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Judges, politics and the Irish Constitution$
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Laura Cahillane, James Gallen, and Tom Hickey

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781526114556

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9781526114556.001.0001

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In defence of judicial innovation and constitutional evolution

In defence of judicial innovation and constitutional evolution

Chapter:
(p.9) 1 In defence of judicial innovation and constitutional evolution
Source:
Judges, politics and the Irish Constitution
Author(s):

Fiona de Londras

Publisher:
Manchester University Press
DOI:10.7228/manchester/9781526114556.003.0002

Fiona de Londras’ chapter argues that judicial innovation is an important and legitimate part of constitutional evolution, taking into account the broader constitutional tradition and structure within which Irish superior courts operate. de Londras defends judicial power generally based on her claims that it leads to better outcomes and that it should be understood as just one part of a broader and ongoing constitutional ‘eco-system’. This chapter mounts a defence of such innovation, arguing that persistent discomfort is founded on (a) an over-weighting of the role of the courts and failure to recognise the ecosystemic nature of constitutional interpretation, (b) a restricted conception of the constitution that underplays its teleological nature, and (c) a misrecognition of judicial pronouncements as ‘the final word’.

Keywords:   Judicial innovation, judicial legitimacy, constitutional interpretation

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