Scholars who study the United States Supreme Court face special challenges in seeking to gain the information necessary for a comprehensive understanding of the high court's decision making. The justices who serve on the Supreme Court issue written opinions that formally present the Court's decisions and reasoning. However, these written opinions do not provide a complete picture of judicial decision-making processes. In order to protect the image and legitimacy of the judicial branch, the justices remain cloistered behind their marble columns and velvet curtains as they seek to perpetuate the myth that they merely interpret law rather than create public policy. Scholars are well aware that the justices do much more than interpret law. The papers and autobiographies of deceased justices, comments to the press by anonymous law clerks, and occasional anecdotes revealed by the justices themselves all provide clues about the interactions, strategic and otherwise, that shape Supreme Court decisions as the justices seek to persuade each other about desirable outcomes. The black robes of judicial office cannot eliminate the human attributes and motivations of the people appointed to sit on the nation's most authoritative court. However, because these human beings strive to remain
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Publication information: Book title: Justice Antonin Scalia and the Supreme Court's Conservative Moment. Contributors: Christopher E. Smith - Author. Publisher: Praeger Publishers. Place of publication: Westport, CT. Publication year: 1993. Page number: ix.
This material is protected by copyright and, with the exception of fair use, may not be further copied, distributed or transmitted in any form or by any means.