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06/20/2014

More Reviews of Murphy on Scalia
Michael Ramsey

Three reviews, none too favorable, of Bruce Allen Murphy's Scalia: A Court of One:

Joshua Hawley (University of Missouri Law School), in the Wall Street Journal: Three decades after Scalia joined the court, originalist analysis is a mainstay of its opinions, among liberal and conservatives.

In the Washington Post, Seth Stern: The conservative justice liberals love to loath.  From the conclusion:

It is still too soon to gauge the full legacy of Scalia, who, at 78, has given no indication that he plans to retire anytime soon. If nothing else, he surely deserves credit as a pitchman for his originalist approach to constitutional interpretation. Whatever you think of its merits, his brand has won in the marketplace of ideas. Major battles, such as the 2008 District of Columbia v. Heller gun rights decision, are often fought on his terms, with both sides arguing over what the founders meant.

Via Ed Whelan at NRO (here and here), who also has a review in the print version of National Review (subscription required for online access, excerpts at NRO here).

RELATED:  In The New Yorker, Jeff Shesol: Scalia's Word Games (principally discussing this week's opinion in Abramski v. United States).  As an aside, Abramski -- which involved the question of what it means to be a "purchaser" of a gun -- seems an especially difficult case that shows textualism cannot make every case an easy one.  No serious textualist thinks otherwise.  Shesol, however, seems to think that makes the whole enterprise of textualism a fraud, as if it were always the case that text could mean anything, according to one's political preferences.