Judicial Activism

Length: 5 Pages 1280 Words

Judicial Activism is a doctrine that describes the way a court should actively access its’ power as a check to the activities of governmental bodies, when it is thought that those bodies have exceeded their authority. Roger Clegg, vice president of the National Legal Center for the Public Interest describes his definition a little differently. He writes that it is the act of a judge abusing his/her power by asserting his/her opinion of what the law should be, instead of what it really is. Clegg feels that in its’ history the Supreme Court has often constructed new constitutional rights with no basis from constitutional background. Roger Clegg is a strong opponent of judicial activism. He also feels that judges in today’s courts are setting up policies, which they have no competence in doing, at the state and national level. Clegg says that policymaking needs to be left in the hands of elected officials. Judges are setting up gay-rights ordinances in Colorado and making welfare policy for illegal immigrants in California (Clegg p.246). According to Clegg these are policies that legislative branch should be dealing with, not the judicial branch. When judges take on policymaking they take it out of the hands o Continue...

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He says that an activist court is not one that makes decisions based on the Constitution, but by personal views. However, being an activist means that you are also susceptible to personal, social, and political pressures to refrain from continuing activism. This could possibly be done through joining an interest group or the individual might wish to force change through his or her own views while in a position of power. Also interest groups love to work with only one or two judges to pass a particular policy than working with an entire electorate. They also remove it from the compromising political process. The courts invented the absolute right that slaveholders can do whatever they chose with their property. Often during these times it becomes the vote of Anthony Kennedy. If a court overturns a precedent that it feels to be unconstitutional then it is not being an activist court, because it is doing what it was designed to do. The Judiciary system was designed to be the least dangerous branch (Clegg p. In defense of judicial activism, Clegg writes that there is basic human nature is rooted in wanting to demonstrate personal views. He has made much of his success in cases that dealt with distribution of power between states and the federal government. Some individuals think of activism as being on the ball or energetic. Clegg also writes that many people are confused over the real meaning to the idea of judicial activism. In today's Supreme Court the Chief Justice is William Rehnquist.


Concept of Judicial Activism
Concept of Judicial Activism. Advocates of judicial activism, by contrast, argue that judges should more actively wield their power. (1210 5 )

Judicial Activism
Judicial Activism. Judicial activism is necessary because some issues are just too difficult for the political branches of the government to confront. (1284 5 )

The Controversy over Judicial Review
Many also assert that he established a tradition of judicial activism on the part of the Court, a tradition which has waxed and waned over the decades. (1640 7 )

Legal Principle of Judicial Review The purpose of this research is
accounts of the Supreme Court nominations of Robert Bork and Clarence Thomas cite such terms as strict construction, natural law, judicial activism, each of (4150 17 )

is a tendency for politicians, congresspersons, and justices to take an interpretive point of view toward the constitution and to oppose judicial activism. (988 4 )

History of the US Supreme Court
Another way of categorizing the positions is original intent versus judicial activism, which is the way conservatives see the matter. (1796 7 )