Is the Roberts Court Really a Court?

16 Pages Posted: 2 May 2011

See all articles by Eric Segall

Eric Segall

Georgia State University College of Law

Date Written: 2011


When facing a question that the law does not clearly answer, courts are generally obligated to resolve legal disputes by examining, interpreting, and applying prior positive law such as text and precedent. This Article argues that three cases decided by the Roberts Court – Gonzales v. Carhart, District of Columbia v. Heller, and Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission – exemplify the Supreme Court’s propensity for disregarding prior positive law when deciding cases. The Author contends that the Roberts Court, quite possibly like all the Supreme Courts before it, is not a “court” at all because it does not take prior law seriously and does not transparently provide true justifications for its conclusions.

Keywords: Supreme Court, SCOTUS, Citizens United, John Robets, Precedent, Stare Decisis, Judicial Review

JEL Classification: K00, K30, K40

Suggested Citation

Segall, Eric, Is the Roberts Court Really a Court? (2011). Stetson Law Review, Vol. 40, p. 1, 2011, Georgia State University College of Law, Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2011-10, Available at SSRN:

Eric Segall (Contact Author)

Georgia State University College of Law ( email )

P.O. Box 4037
Atlanta, GA 30302-4037
United States

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