Carol Platt Liebau: More on Results-Oriented Jurisprudence

Thursday, January 26, 2006

More on Results-Oriented Jurisprudence

In this post, I wrote about the Dems' weakness for results-oriented jurisprudence. In his statement, however, Senator Kyl made the same point -- far more eloquently:

Minority members of the Judiciary Committee did not question Judge Alito’s qualifications. Rather, they tried to get him to commit to certain results in cases that are sure to come before the courts. They want to see certain policy goals enacted into law. Now, we all want our policy goals to become law, but our aim should be enacting constitutional legislation, not relying on the courts to enact our policy preferences.

In my September statement supporting Judge Roberts, I explained that this same dynamic had played itself out during his hearings. It is apparent that there is now a fundamental difference between the majority and the minority parties on this matter. We believe the courts should not try to impose policy results in their decisions; they should just decide the questions of statutory interpretation and constitutional meaning. For the Supreme Court, the results are — or should be — simply a function of the proper application of the Constitution and law to the facts of each case.

To the minority, however, that’s not enough. As many minority Senators have expressed, they are not going to vote for a nominee who won’t assure them that he will vote the way they want in future cases. I submit that that is wrong. As Judge Alito testified, “Results-oriented jurisprudence is never justified because it is not our job to produce particular results.”



Blogger LQ said...

Justices are unelected, cannot be fired, their decisions bind future justices and cannot be appealed. They have so much power that they must put aside personal and political views and interpret the law as it is, not as they wish it to be. If the Democrats want certain results, they need to win elections and then write laws or amend the Constitution to reflect their policies, not expect justices to bend the law to reach a desired conclusion.

I believe in equal opportunity for all Americans. The underprivileged, however, should only win when the law is on their side.

7:15 PM  

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