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Judicial Activism

Judicial activism occurs when judges write subjective policy preferences into the law rather than apply the law impartially according to its original meaning. As such, activism does not mean the mere act of striking down a law.

Cases of Judicial Activism

  • Playing Legislator

Playing Legislator

Judges weigh policy considerations above the requirements of law.

Decision Date Court Types of activism
Austin v. Michigan Chamber of Commerce 03/27/1990 Supreme Court Playing Legislator
BMW v. Gore 05/20/1996 Supreme Court Living Constitutionalism, Playing Legislator
Flast v. Cohen 06/10/1968 Supreme Court Judicial Imperialism, Playing Legislator
Griswold v. Connecticut 06/07/1965 Supreme Court Living Constitutionalism, Playing Legislator
Hamdan v. Rumsfeld 06/29/2006 Supreme Court Contorting Text, Judicial Imperialism, Playing Legislator
Hunter ex rel. Brandt v. The Regents of the University of California 09/09/1999 Ninth Circuit Abusing Precedent, Contorting Text, Playing Legislator
Lemon v. Kurtzman 06/28/1971 Supreme Court Playing Legislator
Mapp v. Ohio 06/19/1961 Supreme Court Abusing Precedent, Playing Legislator
Missouri v. Jenkins 04/18/1990 Supreme Court Judicial Imperialism, Playing Legislator
Rasul v. Bush 06/28/2004 Supreme Court Abusing Precedent, Judicial Imperialism, Playing Legislator
Roper v. Simmons 03/01/2005 Supreme Court Importing Foreign Law, Living Constitutionalism, Playing Legislator
United States v. Virginia 06/26/1996 Supreme Court Playing Legislator
Weeks v. United States 02/24/1914 Supreme Court Playing Legislator