Barry McDonald for CNN: “Supreme Court Justices: Are they supposed to be politicians in black robes?”

October 31, 2016 — An op-ed by Professor Barry P. McDonald titled “Supreme Court Justices: Are they supposed to be politicians in black robes?” has been published by CNN.  The article considers the role of the Supreme Court justices in interpreting and applying the law of the Constitution.

Excerpt from “Supreme Court Justices: Are they supposed to be politicians in black robes?”

As a professor who teaches constitutional law, last week’s final presidential debate disturbed me. And it was not necessarily the prospect of having a particular candidate elected who I’m concerned about. It was the back and forth on the Supreme Court.

It started with one of Chris Wallace’s first questions: “[W]here do you want to see the court take the country?”

Excuse me? This sounded like an inquiry about political leadership that should have been addressed to the candidates themselves.

Since when did an institution that is supposed to apply neutral principles of law to resolve disputes become a third political branch of our government? And when did judges who have built-in protection from being politically accountable to the people — such as lifetime jobs and salary protections — become our new political leaders?

Read the complete article at www.cnn.com

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