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The Will of the People: How Public Opinion Has Influenced the Supreme Court and Shaped the Meaning of the Constitution

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The Will of the People: How Public Opinion Has Influenced the Supreme Court and Shaped the Meaning of the Constitution Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

In recent years, the justices of the Supreme Court have ruled definitively on such issues as abortion, school prayer, and military tribunals in the war on terror. They decided one of American historys most contested presidential elections. Yet for all their power, the justices never face election, and hold their offices for life. This combination of influence and apparent unaccountability has led many to complain that there is something illegitimate—even undemocratic—about judicial authority.

In The Will of the People, Barry Friedman challenges that claim by showing that the Court has always been subject to a higher power: the American public. Judicial positions have been abolished, the justices jurisdiction has been stripped, the Court has been packed, and unpopular decisions have been defied. For at least the past sixty years, the justices have made sure that their decisions do not stray too far from public opinion.

Friedmans pathbreaking account of the relationship between popular opinion and the Supreme Court—from the Declaration of Independence to the end of the Rehnquist Court in 2005—details how the American people came to accept their most controversial institution and, in so doing, shaped the meaning of the Constitution.

Synopsis:

In recent years, the justices of the Supreme Court have ruled definitively on such issues as abortion, school prayer, and military tribunals in the war on terror. They decided one of American history's most contested presidential elections. Yet for all their power, the justices never face election, and hold their offices for life. This combination of influence and apparent unaccountability has led many to complain that there is something illegitimate--even undemocratic--about judicial authority.

In The Will of the People, Barry Friedman challenges that claim by showing that the Court has always been subject to a higher power: the American public. Judicial positions have been abolished, the justices' jurisdiction has been stripped, the Court has been packed, and unpopular decisions have been defied. For at least the past sixty years, the justices have made sure that their decisions do not stray too far from public opinion.

Friedman's pathbreaking account of the relationship between popular opinion and the Supreme Court--from the Declaration of Independence to the end of the Rehnquist Court in 2005--details how the American people came to accept their most controversial institution and, in so doing, shaped the meaning of the Constitution.

About the Author

Barry Friedman holds the Jacob D. Fuchsberg Chair at the New York University School of Law. He is a constitutional lawyer and has litigated cases involving abortion, the death penalty, and free speech. He lives in New York City.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780374532376
Author:
Friedman, Barry
Publisher:
Farrar Straus Giroux
Subject:
Constitutional
Subject:
General Law
Subject:
Public opinion -- United States.
Subject:
United States Public opinion.
Subject:
Courts - Supreme Court
Subject:
Government - Judicial Branch
Subject:
Legal History
Subject:
Law-Legal Guides and Reference
Edition Description:
Trade Paper
Publication Date:
20100831
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Includes Notes and an Index
Pages:
624
Dimensions:
8.25 x 5.50 in

Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Law » Constitutional Law
History and Social Science » Law » General
History and Social Science » Law » Legal Guides and Reference
History and Social Science » Politics » General
History and Social Science » US History » General

The Will of the People: How Public Opinion Has Influenced the Supreme Court and Shaped the Meaning of the Constitution New Trade Paper
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Product details 624 pages Farrar Straus Giroux - English 9780374532376 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , In recent years, the justices of the Supreme Court have ruled definitively on such issues as abortion, school prayer, and military tribunals in the war on terror. They decided one of American history's most contested presidential elections. Yet for all their power, the justices never face election, and hold their offices for life. This combination of influence and apparent unaccountability has led many to complain that there is something illegitimate--even undemocratic--about judicial authority.

In The Will of the People, Barry Friedman challenges that claim by showing that the Court has always been subject to a higher power: the American public. Judicial positions have been abolished, the justices' jurisdiction has been stripped, the Court has been packed, and unpopular decisions have been defied. For at least the past sixty years, the justices have made sure that their decisions do not stray too far from public opinion.

Friedman's pathbreaking account of the relationship between popular opinion and the Supreme Court--from the Declaration of Independence to the end of the Rehnquist Court in 2005--details how the American people came to accept their most controversial institution and, in so doing, shaped the meaning of the Constitution.

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