Monday, January 17, 2011

Making Our Democracy Work

Breyer on Democracy in America,

In an era characterized by interbranch antagonisms, Breyer’s call for cooperation may sound utopian to some. It also seems at odds with the independence of the judiciary. Yet it is neither a new nor a radical notion. In 1939, Chief Justice Charles Evans Hughes described the judicial branch as “a separate but not an independent arm of government.” “In the great enterprise of making democracy workable,” he argued, “we are all partners.” Breyer traces this view back even further, to the nation’s founding. “The Constitution’s most basic objective,” he writes, is “the creation of a single nation,” a goal it advances “by creating political institutions strong enough to permit the ‘people’ to govern themselves.”

From Jeff Shesol's book review in NYTimesHere's and interview with Breyer from ABC.

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