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COOPER INDUSTRIES, INC. V. LEATHERMANTOOL GROUP, INC. (99-2035) 532 U.S. 424 (2001)
205 F.3d 1351, vacated and remanded.
Syllabus
 
Opinion
[ Stevens ]
Concurrence
[ Thomas ]
Concurrence
[ Scalia ]
Dissent
[ Ginsburg ]
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Scalia, J., concurring

SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES


No. 99—2035

COOPER INDUSTRIES, INC., PETITIONER v. LEATHERMAN TOOL GROUP, INC.

ON WRIT OF CERTIORARI TO THE UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE NINTH CIRCUIT

[May 14, 2001]

    Justice Scalia, concurring in the judgment.

    I was (and remain) of the view that excessive punitive damages do not violate the Due Process Clause; but the Court held otherwise. See BMW of North America, Inc. v. Gore, 517 U.S. 559 (1996); id., at 598 (Scalia, J., dissenting). And I was of the view that we should review for abuse of discretion (rather than de novo) fact-bound constitutional issues which, in their resistance to meaningful generalization, resemble the question of excessiveness of punitive damages–namely, whether there exists reasonable suspicion for a stop and probable cause for a search; but the Court held otherwise. See Ornelas v. United States, 517 U.S. 690 (1996); id., at 700 (Scalia, J., dissenting). Finally, in a case in which I joined a dissent that made it unnecessary for me to reach the issue, the Court categorically stated that “the question whether a fine is constitutionally excessive calls for … de novo review.” United States v. Bajakajian, 524 U.S. 321, 336—337, n. 10 (1998); see id., at 344 (Kennedy, J., joined by Rehnquist, C. J., and O’Connor and Scalia, JJ., dissenting). Given these precedents, I agree that de novo review of the question of excessive punitive damages best accords with our jurisprudence. Accordingly, I concur in the judgment of the Court.