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Full-Text Articles in Law

Doctrinal Reasoning As A Disruptive Practice, Jessie Allen Jan 2018

Doctrinal Reasoning As A Disruptive Practice, Jessie Allen

Articles

Legal doctrine is generally thought to contribute to legal decision making only to the extent it determines substantive results. Yet in many cases, the available authorities are indeterminate. I propose a different model for how doctrinal reasoning might contribute to judicial decisions. Drawing on performance theory and psychological studies of readers, I argue that judges’ engagement with formal legal doctrine might have self-disrupting effects like those performers experience when they adopt uncharacteristic behaviors. Such disruptive effects would not explain how judges ultimately select, or should select, legal results. But they might help legal decision makers to set aside subjective biases.


Blackstone, Expositor And Censor Of Law Both Made And Found, Jessie Allen Jan 2017

Blackstone, Expositor And Censor Of Law Both Made And Found, Jessie Allen

Book Chapters

Jeremy Bentham famously insisted on the separation of law as it is and law as it should be, and criticized his contemporary William Blackstone for mixing up the two. According to Bentham, Blackstone costumes judicial invention as discovery, obscuring the way judges make new law while pretending to uncover preexisting legal meaning. Bentham’s critique of judicial phoniness persists to this day in claims that judges are “politicians in robes” who pick the outcome they desire and rationalize it with doctrinal sophistry. Such skeptical attacks are usually met with attempts to defend doctrinal interpretation as a partial or occasional limit on …


Forum, Federalism, And Free Markets: An Empirical Study Of Judicial Behavior Under The Dormant Commerce Clause Doctrine, Mehmet K. Konar-Steenberg, Anne F. Peterson Jan 2011

Forum, Federalism, And Free Markets: An Empirical Study Of Judicial Behavior Under The Dormant Commerce Clause Doctrine, Mehmet K. Konar-Steenberg, Anne F. Peterson

Faculty Scholarship

This study examines judicial behavior under the dormant Commerce Clause doctrine by drawing on an original database of 459 state and Federal appellate cases decided between 1970 and 2009. The authors use logit regression to show that state judges are more likely to uphold state and local laws against dormant Commerce Clause attack than their Federal judicial counterparts, a result that is consistent with the interstate rivalry issues animating the doctrine. The study also finds that Republican-dominated judicial panels at the state level are more likely to side with tax challengers invoking the dormant Commerce Clause doctrine than are Democratic …


The Dynamics And Determinants Of The Decision To Grant En Banc Review, Tracey E. George Jan 1999

The Dynamics And Determinants Of The Decision To Grant En Banc Review, Tracey E. George

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

The ability of U.S. Courts of Appeals to control the development of law within their respective circuits has been strained by the practice of divisional sittings, the growing caseload at the circuit court level, the increasing number of judges sitting within each circuit, and the decreasing probability of Supreme Court intervention. The primary method of maintaining coherence and consistency in doctrinal development within a federal circuit is en banc review. Yet, many critics contend that en bane rehearing is a time-consuming, inefficient procedure that fails to serve its intended purpose and too often is abused for political ends. This Article …