Should Judges Make Laws?

Attorney Leland Chan

October 28, 2018

Note: This Forum will be held at Hacker Dojo, 3350 Thomas Road, Suite 150, Santa Clara, CA 95054. Click here for a map.

The contested nomination of Brett Kavanaugh highlights the fact that many Americans on the left and the right look to the Supreme Court to decide some of society’s big questions: whether abortion should be legal, whether corporations can spend freely on elections, whether all citizens who are real persons have the right to vote.

Why do we invest so much power in the “third branch of government,” the one that Alexander Hamilton referred to in Federalist Papers No. 78 as the “weakest” branch because it had “no influence over either the sword or the purse”? Is it because of judicial activism? Are we better off with original intent or living constitutionalism? Or should we just abandon judicial philosophy – in other words just accept the reality that judges are political and be sure we get the right ones in order to get the right results?

We will examine these intriguing questions in the next segment of the Mini Law School.

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