The Champion

November 2006 , Page 44 

Search the Champion Looking for something specific?

Preview of Member Only Content

For full access: login or Become a Member Join Now

Active Liberty

By Richard J. Blaustein

Read more Book Review columns.

Active Liberty:
Interpreting Our Democratic Constitution
By Justice Stephen Breyer
Published by Alfred A. Knopf 2005
161 pages (including index)

The January 2005 Supreme Court case of Booker v. United States still perplexes criminal defense lawyers, not only because the two parts of the decision, unidentical 5-4 majorities, do not mesh together all that well, but also because it piques legal curiosity as to what was behind Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer’s thinking when he wrote to overturn the mandatory nature of the federal sentencing guidelines. Whereas Justice Stevens, who wrote the first part of the decision, basically interprets the historic right to a jury trial as applied to a jury’s deciding on facts pertinent to sentencing, Breyer’s decision stresses the rationale and the manner for the Court’s reading of Congress’ fundamental intentions in its legislating mandatory sentencing guidelines. Needless to say, of the two parts, Breyer’s decision has the more arcane aura to it

Want to read more?

The Champion archive is reserved for NACDL members.

NACDL members, please login to read the rest of this article.
login

Not a member? Join now.
Join Now
Or click here to see an overview of NACDL Member benefits.

See what NACDL members say about us.

To read the current issue of The Champion in its entirety, click here.

  • Media inquiries: Contact NACDL's Director of Public Affairs & Communications Ivan J. Dominguez at 202-465-7662 or idominguez@nacdl.org
  • Academic Requests: Full articles of The Champion Magazine are available for academic and research purposes in the WestLaw and LexisNexis databases.

In This Section

Advertisement Advertise with Us
ad