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Yale Law Journal Forum

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Supreme Court, democracy, structural reforms


Jurisprudence | Law | Supreme Court of the United States


In How to Save the Supreme Court, we identified the legitimacy challenge facing the Court, traced it to a set of structural flaws, and proposed novel reforms. Little more than a year later, the conversation around Supreme Court reform has only grown louder and more urgent. In this Essay, we continue that conversation by engaging with critics of our approach. The current crisis of the Supreme Court is, we argue, inextricable from the question of the Supreme Court’s proper role in our democracy. For those interested in reform, there are three distinct strategies for ensuring the Supreme Court maintains its proper role relative to democracy: internal restraints, external constraints, and structural reforms. We argue that internal restraints and external constraints both suffer from serious drawbacks as strategies for restraining the Court. Structural reforms remain the most promising option for reforming and saving the Supreme Court.



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