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Law, Courts and Politics


About the Series

In Democracy in America, Alexis de Tocqueville famously noted that "scarcely any political question arises in the United States that is not resolved, sooner or later, into a judicial question." The importance of courts in settling political questions in areas ranging from health care to immigration shows the continuing astuteness of de Tocqueville’s observation. To understand how courts resolve these important questions, empirical analyses of law, courts and judges, and the politics and policy influence of law and courts have never been more salient or more essential.

Law, Courts and Politics was developed to analyze these critically important questions. This series presents empirically driven manuscripts in the broad field of judicial politics and public law by scholars in law and social science. It uses the most up to date scholarship and seeks an audience of  students, academics, upper division undergraduate and graduate courses in law, political science and sociology as well as anyone interested in learning more about law, courts and politics.

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Creating the Law: State Supreme Court Opinions and The Effect of Audiences

Creating the Law: State Supreme Court Opinions and The Effect of Audiences

1st Edition

Forthcoming

Michael K. Romano, Todd A. Curry
September 24, 2019

Written opinions are the primary means by which judges communicate with external actors. These sentiments include the parties to the case itself, but also more broadly journalists, public officials, lawyers, other judges, and increasingly, the mass public. In Creating the Law, Michael K. Romano and...

States in American Constitutionalism: Interpretation, Authority, and Politics

States in American Constitutionalism: Interpretation, Authority, and Politics

1st Edition

Forthcoming

Bradley D. Hays
May 30, 2019

States in American Constitutionalism: Interpretation, Authority, and Politics examines the often overlooked role that states have played in the development and maintenance of American constitutionalism by examining the purpose and effect of state resolutions on national constitutional meaning. From...

Judicial Review and Contemporary Democratic Theory: Power, Domination, and the Courts

Judicial Review and Contemporary Democratic Theory: Power, Domination, and the Courts

1st Edition

Scott E. Lemieux, David J. Watkins
November 02, 2017

For decades, the question of judicial review’s status in a democratic political system has been adjudicated through the framework of what Alexander Bickel labeled "the counter-majoritarian difficulty." That is, the idea that judicial review is particularly problematic for democracy because it...

Regulating Judicial Elections: Assessing State Codes of Judicial Conduct

Regulating Judicial Elections: Assessing State Codes of Judicial Conduct

1st Edition

C. Scott Peters
September 19, 2017

State judicial elections are governed by a unique set of rules that enforce longstanding norms of judicial independence by limiting how judicial candidates campaign. These rules have been a key part of recent debates over judicial elections and have been the subject of several U.S. Supreme Court...

Varieties of Legal Order: The Politics of Adversarial and Bureaucratic Legalism

Varieties of Legal Order: The Politics of Adversarial and Bureaucratic Legalism

1st Edition

Thomas F. Burke, Jeb Barnes
August 29, 2017

Across the globe, law in all its variety is becoming more central to politics, public policy, and everyday life. For over four decades, Robert A. Kagan has been a leading scholar of the causes and consequences of the march of law that is characteristic of late 20th and early 21st century governance...

EU Treaties and the Judicial Politics of National Courts: A Law and Politics Approach

EU Treaties and the Judicial Politics of National Courts: A Law and Politics Approach

1st Edition

Pablo José Castillo Ortiz
April 13, 2017

Cases such as the Maastricht ruling by the German Federal Constitutional Court or the 'Crotty; decision by the Irish Supreme Court have gone down in the history of European integration as outstanding examples of intervention by judicial actors in important political processes. In this book, Dr....

Judicial Elections in the 21st Century

Judicial Elections in the 21st Century

1st Edition

Chris W. Bonneau, Melinda Gann Hall
December 13, 2016

Leading authorities present the latest cutting edge research on state judicial elections. Starting with recent transformations in the electoral landscape, including those brought about by U.S. Supreme Court rulings, this volume provides penetrating analyses of partisan, nonpartisan, and retention...

Europeanization of Judicial Review

Europeanization of Judicial Review

1st Edition

Nicola Ch. Corkin
November 18, 2016

Europeanization of Judicial Review argues that the higher complexity of the political framework in which laws are made today leads to less well-designed laws and loop-holes, allowing politicians to leave decisions to the courts. The higher complexity of the political framework is a result of the...

Judicial Politics in Mexico: The Supreme Court and the Transition to Democracy

Judicial Politics in Mexico: The Supreme Court and the Transition to Democracy

1st Edition

Andrea Castagnola, Saul Lopez Noriega
October 27, 2016

After more than seventy years of uninterrupted authoritarian government headed by the Partido Revolucionario Institucional (PRI), Mexico formally began the transition to democracy in 2000. Unlike most other new democracies in Latin America, no special Constitutional Court was set up, nor was there...

The Dual System of Privacy Rights in the United States

The Dual System of Privacy Rights in the United States

1st Edition

Mary McThomas
August 12, 2015

Theoretically, the right to privacy is an individual’s right to space away from the public gaze to make life choices that are best for her or him, regardless of the beliefs of the majority. Yet the right to privacy in the United States has proven problematic for both political theorists and...

The Media, the Court, and the Misrepresentation: The New Myth of the Court

The Media, the Court, and the Misrepresentation: The New Myth of the Court

1st Edition

Rorie Spill Solberg, Eric N. Waltenburg
December 02, 2014

The Court’s decisions are interpreted and disseminated via the media. During this process, the media paints an image of the Court and its business. Like any artist, the media has license regarding what to cover and the amount of attention devoted to any aspect of the Court and its business. Some...

Making Law and Courts Research Relevant: The Normative Implications of Empirical Research

Making Law and Courts Research Relevant: The Normative Implications of Empirical Research

1st Edition

Brandon L. Bartels, Chris W. Bonneau
October 02, 2014

One of the more enduring topics of concern for empirically-oriented scholars of law and courts—and political scientists more generally—is how research can be more directly relevant to broader audiences outside of academia. A significant part of this issue goes back to a seeming disconnect between...

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