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University of Michigan Law School

Constitutional Law

Constitutionalism

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When Should Original Meanings Matter?, Richard A. Primus Jan 2008

When Should Original Meanings Matter?, Richard A. Primus

Articles

Constitutional theory lacks an account of when each of the familiar sources of authority-text, original meaning, precedent, and so on-should be given weight. The dominant tendency is to regard all sources as potentially applicable in every case. In contrast, this Article proposes that each source of authority is pertinent in some categories of cases but not in others, much as a physical tool is appropriate for some but not all kinds of household tasks. The Article then applies this approach to identify the categories of cases in which original meaning is, or is not, a valid factor in constitutional decisionmaking.


Against Interpretive Supremacy, Saikrishna Prakash, John Yoo May 2005

Against Interpretive Supremacy, Saikrishna Prakash, John Yoo

Michigan Law Review

Many constitutional scholars are obsessed with judicial review and the many questions surrounding it. One perennial favorite is whether the Constitution even authorizes judicial review. Another is whether the other branches of the federal government must obey the Supreme Court's interpretation of the Constitution and what, if anything, the other branches must do to execute the judiciary's judgments. Marbury v. Madison has been a full-employment program for many constitutional law scholars, including ourselves. Larry Kramer, the new Dean of Stanford Law School, shares this passion. He has devoted roughly the last decade of his career, with two lengthy ...


Terry Firma: Background Democracy And Constitutional Foundations, Frank I. Michelman Jan 2001

Terry Firma: Background Democracy And Constitutional Foundations, Frank I. Michelman

Michigan Law Review

Ages ago, I had the excellent luck to fall into a collaboration with Terrance Sandalow to produce a casebook now long forgotten. There could have been no more bracing or beneficial learning experience for a fledgling legal scholar (meaning me). What brought us together indeed was luck from my standpoint, but it was enterprise, too - the brokerage of an alert West Publishing Company editor picking up on a casual remark of mine as he made one of his regular sweeps through Harvard Law School. A novice law professor, I mentioned to him how much I admired a new essay in ...


Losing Faith: America Without Judicial Review?, Erwin Chemerinsky May 2000

Losing Faith: America Without Judicial Review?, Erwin Chemerinsky

Michigan Law Review

In the last decade, it has become increasingly trendy to question whether the Supreme Court and constitutional judicial review really can make a difference. Gerald Rosenberg, for example, in The Hollow Hope, expressly questions whether judicial review achieves effective social change. Similarly, Michael Klarman explores whether the Supreme Court's desegregation decisions were effective, except insofar as they produced a right-wing backlash that induced action to desegregate. In Taking the Constitution Away from the Courts, Mark Tushnet approvingly invokes these arguments (pp. 137, 145), but he goes much further. Professor Tushnet contends that, on balance, constitutional judicial review is harmful ...