For Less Judicial Ideology, Shorten Government Reach
Something about this line of thinking, in an AP essay about the Supreme Court by Mark Sherman, doesn’t sit right:
As in dozens of earlier cases, Kennedy was in the majority each time. He was the author of the campaign finance decision.
The rulings demonstrate the extent to which ideology — not fidelity to precedent or a particular interpretation of the Constitution — is the driving force on the court.
The immediate peculiarity is the failure to comprehend that ideology affects methods of interpreting the Constitution, and vice versa. That isn’t to say that judges will necessarily choose the interpretation that best suits whatever their ideology dictates on an issue-by-issue basis, but that beliefs about the role of government will lend themselves toward certain approaches to the law.
The larger point that ought to be made, however, is that the underlying problem is the reach of the government overall. If every aspect of American life, and all tiers of government, were not relevant to the Supreme Court, ideological factions wouldn’t have the incentive to put so much emphasis on procuring “the right kind” of judges. Moreover, ideology would be less relevant.