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Vanderbilt University Law School

Constitutional Law

2016

Justice Scalia

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A Tribute To Justice Scalia: Why Bad Cases Make Bad Methodology, Brian T. Fitzpatrick May 2016

A Tribute To Justice Scalia: Why Bad Cases Make Bad Methodology, Brian T. Fitzpatrick

Vanderbilt Law Review

The Vanderbilt Law Review asked me to write a short memorial tribute to my old boss, Justice Antonin Scalia, and I am fortunate that Dean Chemerinsky's new book provides an apt occasion to do so. To be as blunt as the Justice would have been: he would have hated this book. Not because Dean Chemerinsky is not a gifted writer; he most surely is. But because the entire methodology of the book-a methodology I call "bad-cases" reasoning-was anathema to the Justice. The Justice may not have been right about everything, but he was right about this: bad-cases reasoning is bad …