Describes judges who create rights not explicitly stated in the Constitution or overturn laws they deem are unfair. Often used to describe liberal judges, but conservatives practice it, too.
the belief that the Supreme Court should play a role in shaping national policies
when judges aggressively apply their judicial review power to strike down laws, as a means of making policy conform to their own preferences.
Term referring to the Supreme Court's practice of using its power to achieve social goals.
an interpretation of the U.S. constitution holding that the spirit of the times and the needs of the nation can legitimately influence judicial decisions (particularly decisions of the Supreme Court)
A philosophy of decision-making whereby judges allow their personal views about public policy, among other factors, to guide their decisions, usually with the suggestion that adherents of this philosophy tend to find constitutional violations and are willing to ignore precedent. [ Black's Law Dictionary. 7th ed. 1999
A policy that sees the Court as acting rightly and necessarily in a broader political arena in order to achieve desired ends, such as civil liberties protection, equality, social or economic justice.
belief that the Supreme Court has the right or obligation to perform judicial review.
Judicial Activism is the tendency of some judges to take a flexible view of their power of judicial interpretation, especially when such judges import subjective reasoning that displaces objective evaluation of applicable law. The term is usually used pejoratively to describe decisions that are perceived to endorse a particular agenda. Whether a decision is characterized as judicial activism is often a matter of political polemic.
Judicial Activism is said to be the overreaching or incorrect interpretation of the law, which are thought by critics to be a misuse of the power of interpretation of the law by a judge or judges for political or personal reasons.