In the Beginning: Robert Bork and Other Originalists

in Desperately Seeking Certainty

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print May 2002 | ISBN: 9780226238081
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226238104 | DOI:
In the Beginning: Robert Bork and Other Originalists

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This chapter focuses on Robert Bork' theory and the theories of several other scholars who are foundationalists like Bork who endorse the simplest form of originalism and believe that the Constitution should be interpreted to reflect the public intentions of those who drafted and ratified it. Like most scholars, Bork is drawn to originalism primarily as a method of constraining judges from imposing their own values on democratic majorities. Judges should be guided by the original meaning of the Constitution in all future cases, but need not always overrule past cases even if those cases conflict with the true meaning of the Constitution. Thus, originalist theory requires radical changes in current constitutional law on the basis of a need to prevent judges from imposing their own values.

Keywords: Robert Bork; foundationalist; originalism; judges; originalist theory; Constitution

Chapter.  8152 words. 

Subjects: Constitutional and Administrative Law

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