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Constitutional Law

Judicial review

Vanderbilt Law Review

1992

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Quasi-Constitutional Law: Clear Statement Rules As Constitu, William N. Eskridge, Jr., Philip P. Frickey Apr 1992

Quasi-Constitutional Law: Clear Statement Rules As Constitu, William N. Eskridge, Jr., Philip P. Frickey

Vanderbilt Law Review

In one of the most celebrated law review articles of all time, Karl Llewellyn argued that the traditional canons of statutory construction are not reliable guides to predicting judicial interpretations, because for every canon supporting one interpretation there is a counter-canon cutting against that interpretation. He accomplished his tour de force in large part by focusing upon the "referential" canons-rules referring the Court to an outside or preexisting source to determine statutory meaning'-and upon the "linguistic" canons-general conventions of language, grammar, and syntax. Llewellyn did not explore in any detail the "substantive" canons, the clear statement rules or presumptions of …