Two Observations About the Kavanaugh Hearings (So Far)

  1.  Whatever you think of the protests in the hearing, you can understand why the Justices are unwilling to allow television cameras in oral argument. They probably think (and perhaps with some justification) that some cases will be unable to proceed in an orderly manner if people can get on TV for shouting during argument.
  2. There is a basic connect between the way people talk about constitutional interpretation and its practice. For instance, originalism get praised a lot. But then when people talk about the best or most important Justices, they invariably name Justice Robert Jackson.  (Judge Cavanaugh did this today.) Justice Jackson, though, was the furthest thing from an originalist, as he said in a number of opinions. How can this be reconciled? I don’t know.

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3 Responses

  1. Joe says:

    [1] Audio isn’t live audio. It’s released at the end of the week. So, why can’t they do that with cameras and can edit out protests? They manage to do that with sports events where people run on the field or the like and there is is a live broadcast. Anyway, to some extent, we can live with that. Plus, with media there as is, there would seem to be some incentive, but rarely do protests occur.

    [2] It kinda can’t be reconciled on some level. But, anyway, originalism is more of a sentiment than something purely upheld. On some level, that’s realistic. No one thing is going to control the day especially in a multimember court.

  2. Joe says:

    Also, “best” and “important” doesn’t necessarily mean they like everything about him.

    Kavanaugh cited Thurgood Marshall as a hero. I gather he is somewhat critical about his jurisprudence.

  3. Brett Bellmore says:

    Ideally judges and justices should be so unimportant that we don’t even know their names, just like there aren’t trading cards of sports umpires. Judges and justices tend to become important by being bad judges and justices.