- Subject index
Concerned that scholars in various disciplines were talking past each other and that policy debates concerning judicial independence were impoverished, the editors convened a conference of scholars from the disciplines of law, political science, history, economics and sociology. Judicial Independence at the Crossroads: An Interdisciplinary Approach is a collection of essays reflecting the disciplinary perspectives of the authors and the shared understanding that emerged from the conference.
Chapter 5: Does Judicial Independence Exist?: The Lessons of Social Science Research
Does Judicial Independence Exist?: The Lessons of Social Science Research
Judicial independence is considered to be a norm of vital importance in our legal system. Its goal is impartial, “law-based” decision making by judges and, thus, the certain protection of text-based rights, even those unpopular with current majorities and powerful politicians. Impartiality is secured by freeing judges of popular and partisan pressures—in obtaining their positions, retaining their positions, and making their decisions. Because the people can be confident that judges made their decisions fairly and objectively, compliance with court rulings is thereby assured. High regard for courts continues, as then does their legitimacy, power, and unique ability to protect our treasured rights and liberties.
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