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Political Science Commons

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Law

Jurisprudence

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

2003

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Full-Text Articles in Political Science

What Do We Mean By "Judicial Independence"?, Stephen B. Burbank Jan 2003

What Do We Mean By "Judicial Independence"?, Stephen B. Burbank

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

In this article, the author argues that the concept of "judicial independence" has served more as an object of rhetoric than it has of sustained study. He views the scholarly literatures that treat it as ships passing in the night, each subject to weaknesses that reflect the needs and fashions of the discipline, but all tending to ignore courts other than the Supreme Court of the United States. Seeking both greater rigor and greater flexibility than one usually finds in public policy debates about, and in the legal and political science literatures on, judicial independence, the author attributes much of ...