Essay on Constitutional Interpretation of Checks and Balances

Essay on Constitutional Interpretation of Checks and Balances

Length: 1683 words (4.8 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Strong Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Constitutional Interpretation of Checks and Balances

The problem of interpreting the Constitution and framer’s intent is a constantly permeating and troublesome question in the minds of Supreme Court Justices, judges, prominent politicians, and policy makers alike. It is a problem that has been pondered for years and years in the courtrooms and on paper with no real conclusion. One such essay arguing this dilemma is “How Not to Read the Constitution” by Laurence H. Tribe and Michael C. Dorf, who explore the questions “Is reading the text just a pretext for expressing the reader’s vision in the august, almost holy terms of constitutional law?” and “Is the Constitution simply a mirror in which one sees what one wants to see?” (Tribe, 49). While Tribe and Dorf begin their article with a seemingly unbiased opinion on the subject, by the end of the essay it is quite clear that the authors believe in the United States Constitution as a living document which is vulnerable to interpretation and changes with the times. There is much research citing evidence which both supports and argues against the idea that the Constitution can be freely interpreted to adjust to modern society. Neither of the two sides have very solid, concrete arguments. The supports are all very porous and can be easily attacked by the other side. Therefore, there is no right answer to the question of Constitutional interpretation.
In order to understand the topic at hand, one must first have a firm grasp on the original framing of the Constitution. The Constitution was written in a time of national turmoil. Bankruptcy and hunger were rampant throughout the country. The Articles of Confederation, written in 1781, proved to be a failure and the politicia...


... middle of paper ...


... and disadvantages. Neither side is “without it warts” as Justice Scalia is fond of saying (Singer 15). The non-originalist point of view is widely accepted in society, but that still does not mean that the originalist point of view is incorrect. Supporters of the living Constitution say that the Constitution is vague, but they just might not fully understand the original intent of the framers. Even though the framers could never comprehend modern issues and technology, the Constitution gives enough information to decide these cases. This is the main problem with the ongoing argument about whether or not, or how the Constitution should be interpreted. As one can see from above, there is a valid response against each argument. This topic will continue to be discussed for some time to come without resolve, until it eventually becomes invalid to even discuss it.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

The Constitutional Convention Drafted the Constitution in 1787 Essays

- After the failure of the Articles of Confederation exemplified by Shay’s rebellion in 1787, the young United States needed a new government with improved policies. The Constitutional Convention drafted the Constitution in 1787 and, after much debate between Federalists and Anti-Federalists, ratified it in 1789 which provided a government of checks and balances between the judiciary, legislative, and executive branches, distributed more power to the federal government, established that the president would not serve for life, and determined that the president would be voted democratically....   [tags: Founding Fathers]

Strong Essays
1945 words (5.6 pages)

Seidman's Senseless Scheme of Constitutional Disobedience Essay

- A “Financial Crisis”, an “Economic disaster on a scale few nations have ever experienced”(1), the “Great Recession”, the “Lesser Depression”, the “Long Recession”, the “Global Recession of 2009”(2) and the “Financial Implosion”(3) are all expressions used to describe the economic situation the United States found itself in 2012. Louis Michael Seidman, a Harvard graduate and Carmack Waterhouse Professor of Constitution Law at Georgetown University Law Center, referred to it as “fiscal chaos”. It is Professor Seidman’s belief that the cause of this great chaos is the “archaic, idiosyncratic and downright evil provisions” of the Constitution....   [tags: financial crisis, economic disasters]

Strong Essays
1060 words (3 pages)

Constitutional, Statutory, Administrative and Common Law Essay

- ... This is through what is called The Commerce Clause, “The Congress shall have power to regulate commerce with foreign nations, and among the several states”, says our Constitution (Beatty, Samuelson, Bredeson 58). Article II of the Constitution refers to the executive branch. This branch is charge enforcing our nation's laws. Here, the president is at the top of chain. He has three main powers: appointment, legislation, and foreign policy. Finally, Article III is dedicated to the judicial branch....   [tags: United States Constituiton]

Strong Essays
734 words (2.1 pages)

The President of the United States of America Essay

- The President of the United States of America, which was established by the U.S. Constitution in 1787, is the head of state and head of U.S. government. The president is also the Commander in chief of Armed Forces of the United States. The president must be a thirty five year-old and natural-born U.S. citizen who has been a permanent resident in the States at least fourteen years. The President of the United States is indirectly elected by the people through Electoral College every four years. It has become a powerful institution throughout those years since the Constitution was founded....   [tags: power, checks, balance, orders]

Strong Essays
1372 words (3.9 pages)

Constitutional History of Pakistan Essays

- CONSTITUTIONAL HISTORY OF PAKISTAN Course Description: Constitutions have come to be regarded as the collective consensus and ultimate reference point of a nation’s aspirations and ideals. They are looked upon as the primary custodians of individual and collective rights and the supreme arbiters in disputes between the organs of a State. They are the mirror to the ideological hopes of the past, the litmus test for the actuality of the present and the looking glass for the future. The alchemy of their creation and interpretation is suffused with politics, and the politics of a nation are greatly influenced by its Constitutional disputes....   [tags: International Studies]

Free Essays
1766 words (5 pages)

Constitutional Changes Made for the Better Essay

- The contentious debate over the replacement of the U.S. Constitution has brought both joy and conflict to America abroad. Many ideals and beliefs that were unable to be settled upon by the noble drafters hundreds of years ago shall be brought back into discussion. As it is obvious that many changes have shaped America to be very different than it was in 1789, many of the principles of democracy in this great article have held up regardless. I believe that our Constitution has more than proved itself to be competent in regards to governing its people, with over 200 years without change....   [tags: U.S. Constitution]

Strong Essays
1026 words (2.9 pages)

Checks and Balances Essay

- The Founding Fathers were the political leaders who took part in the American Revolution and won American Independence from Great Britain in 1776. They also participated in framing and adopting the Constitution in 1788. They are known in our history books as “The Framers” and are responsible for putting the new government, outlined in the new Constitution into effect. The framers were afraid of majority rule, so they created three separate branches of the government; Legislative, Executive, and Judicial....   [tags: US Constitution]

Strong Essays
850 words (2.4 pages)

Checks and Balances Essay

- Checks and Balances When the framers of our revered Constitution came together to produce our governing system, they wanted to avoid the precedent of an all powerful entity that could control its citizens. They broke governments role into three important phases, which were the power to make laws, the power to interpret laws, and the ability to enforce them. To further decentralize these authority holding organizations, they created a system that allowed each of the three sections to have a say in each of the others ability to exercise said authority....   [tags: U.S. Government ]

Strong Essays
1169 words (3.3 pages)

The U.S. Constitution: Checks & Balances Essay examples

- The U.S. Constitution is the foundation of American governance. Since its creation in 1878, the Constitution remains as the foundation of governance for the Republic and stands as the oldest living Constitution in the world. To prevent a tyranny of the majority will – or of one part of governance – it became necessary to ensure the several branches of government remained separate. To ensure that one of these branches did not trump the other branches, the Founders crafted – within the Constitution – a set of checks and balances....   [tags: US Government]

Strong Essays
1277 words (3.6 pages)

Checks and Balances Essay examples

- Checks and Balances The doctrine of separation of powers developed over many centuries. This practice doctrine can be traced to the British Parliament's gradual assertion of power and resistance to royal decrees during the 14th century. Political theorist, John Locke wrote about the concept of separation of powers in his Second Treatise of Government (1690). In the United States, the separation of powers is a fundamental constitutional principle. The framers of this Constitution saw the need to divide power within the government to prevent a single group from ruthlessly taking over the country....   [tags: Papers]

Strong Essays
966 words (2.8 pages)