Defenders of Liberty or Champions of Security?: Federal Courts, the Hierarchy of Justice, and U.S. Foreign Policy

Defenders of Liberty or Champions of Security?: Federal Courts, the Hierarchy of Justice, and U.S. Foreign Policy

by Kirk A. Randazzo

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Examines the critical role assumed by the U. S. judiciary in balancing concerns about national security with the protection of liberty after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.

The terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, and the subsequent responses by the U.S. federal government have raised fundamental questions about civil liberties in both domestic and international laws. As a result, the U.S. judiciary, out of its responsibility for interpreting the Constitution, has assumed a crucial role in defining boundaries of domestic and foreign policy, and in balancing concerns about security with the protection of liberty. Utilizing a sophisticated blend of quantitative and qualitative analysis, Kirk A. Randazzo examines two main questions: To what extent do federal judges defend liberty or champion security when adjudicating disputes? And to what extent does the hierarchal structure of the federal judiciary influence decisions by lower court judges? There are, he argues, disturbing indications that the federal judiciary as a whole are not defenders of liberty. Furthermore, lower court judges strategically anticipate the decisions of higher courts and constrain their behavior to avoid reversal.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781438430485
Publisher: State University of New York Press
Publication date: 01/02/2011
Series: SUNY series in American Constitutionalism Series
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 138
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.40(d)

About the Author

Kirk A. Randazzo is Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of South Carolina.

Table of Contents

List of Figures vii

List of Tables viii

Acknowledgments ix

Introduction 1

A Historical Look at the Federal Courts and U.S. Foreign Policy 3

The Scope of the Project 6

Organization of the Book 7

Chapter 1 Theoretical Foundations 9

Definitions of U.S. Foreign Policy 9

Types of Foreign Policy Cases Adjudicated in Federal Courts 11

Constitutional/Legal Theories 12

International Relations/Foreign Policy Theories 14

Theories of Judicial Politics 16

Conclusions 19

Chapter 2 Individual Examinations 21

The Paradox of Foreign Affairs Litigation 22

Theoretical Expectations 25

Research Design and Methods 28

Empirical Results 31

Conclusions 34

Chapter 3 The Hierarchy of Justice and the Courts of Appeals 36

Historical Development of the Federal Judiciary 37

Theories of Judicial Compliance and Structural Hierarchies 38

Formal Model of Appeals Court Decision Making 42

Research Design and Methods 51

Empirical Results 53

Conclusions 58

Chapter 4 The Hierarchy of Justice and the District Courts 60

Historical Development of the District Courts 61

Policy Making in a Judicial Hierarchy 62

Formal Model of District Court Decision Making 65

Research Design and Methods 70

Empirical Results 73

Conclusions 77

Chapter 5 Defenders of Liberty or Champions of Security? 79

Analytical Contributions 80

Civil Liberties Protection in a Post-September 11 Environment 82

Quantitative Analysis of Lower Courts 83

Qualitative Analysis of the Supreme Court 85

Conclusions 89

Appendices 91

Appendix 1 Coding Rules 91

Appendix 2 Litigant Codes 98

Appendix 3 Issue Codes 106

Notes 109

References 114

Index 123

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