Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Theories of Judicial Review

An interesting article by Christopher Wolfe (Political Science, Marquette) titled From Constitutional Interpretation to Judicial Activism: The Transformation of Judicial Review in America. Fxs

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Judicial review has really been three different sorts of power, during three distinct eras of American judicial history... The first or “traditional” period, from the birth of the Constitution until the end of the 19th century, embraced a notion of interpretation based on the “fair reading” of the document and a moderate form of judicial review. The second or “transitional” period, from the end of the 19th century until 1937, maintained the theory of the traditional era while in practice giving birth to a more activist form of judicial review. The third or “modern” period, from 1937 until the present, developed new activist theories of constitutional interpretation and judicial review.

For the first time in several generations, however, there is at least something of a possibility that a new era could be in the offing.

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