The U.S. Supreme Court relies on other branches of government to enforce its decisions, but such compliance may not be readily forthcoming. This chapter examines the politics of compliance and resistance in implementing Supreme Court decisions. There are formal mechanisms by which Congress can seek to overturn judicial interpretations of the Constitution of which they disapprove. Although the Court has the final word on the meaning of the Constitution and the policies it mandates, it is the attitudes, beliefs and actions of legislatures, executive branches, interest groups, legal scholars and citizens that form the substance of Court cases. The chapter enquires into the conditions that are likely to give rise to a serious effort to thwart the Court and engage in non-compliance. It presents the issue of abortion as a case study of compliance and impact, and briefly explains Gerald Rosenberg's rival concepts of dynamic court and constrained court.
The single currency was overtly designed to lock a newly united Germany into a common monetary union in which it would act in concert with countries possessing less powerful economies rather than dominate them outright. This chapter focuses on the evolution of the crisis in the eurozone and the shortcomings which have impeded the EU from bringing it under control. The financial sector had not become a protected zone of the eurozone overnight. Ever since the passing of the Single European Act in 1986, its perceived needs had come to shape the concerns of EU decision-makers to an increasing degree. EU decision-makers at the centre of a marathon economic crisis are increasingly insistent that there is no way out except for a union adopting full political and economic standardisation.
This chapter brings the U.S. Supreme Court's political and legal dimensions, its powers and limitations, and the resulting controversies, together and addresses the ultimate issue of the role of the Court. It deals with the role played by the Court in allocating power between the different branches of the U.S. government and between the government and the people. The Court is also responsible for amending the U.S. Constitution as it retains its role as the prime legitimator of political change in the country and plays an important role in making national policy. The chapter also discusses the role of the Court in conflict resolution and ensuring political stability. The most valued role performed by the Court is that of defender of civil liberties against majoritarian or governmental power. The chapter also mentions three versions of Court's role and power: the minimal court, the unlimited court, and the realistic court.
This chapter looks at an explanation that can be employed to account for Trump's eventual victory. It assesses Trump's ascendancy as a function of, and reaction to, the strategies and discourses pursued in the years preceding 2016 by Republican Party elites. It may be that Republican elites, through the discourses that they adopted in pursuit of given electoral logics, set off particular sets of reactive sequences that culminated, over time, in the emergence of the Trump campaign. Arguably, Republican members of Congress, those who served in state legislatures, and the party's elites increasingly turned to electoral strategies structured around 'base mobilization'. There was a marked shift rightwards in the composition of the Republican caucus serving in the House of Representatives although the process of change took longer, amongst Republicans in the Senate.
One of the chief casualties of the extended economic crisis in the EU has been democratic politics. The EU's own mechanisms for decision-making have been set aside at particular moments; a core group of countries has assumed responsibility for crisis management. This chapter examines the increasingly strained relationship between the EU and the democratic process. It argues that ethical standards and competent decision-making are becoming casualties of the democratic deficit. The crisis which rocked the EU at the end of the 1990s briefly brought to the surface the view that the then thirteen-member EU was divided on a North-South basis in its attitude to public morality. The European Parliament, briefly emboldened by having taken resolute action against abuses inside the Commission, slumped back into torpor despite acquiring some increased powers as a result of the Maastricht Treaty.
This book explores how a candidate who broke with almost every single norm governing candidate behaviour, appeared to eschew the professionalised forms of campaigning, and who had been more or less disowned by Republican elites, prove victorious? The focus is on Trump and his campaign; the account does not go beyond the November election and its immediate aftermath. The book argues that the Trump campaign, like earlier populist insurgencies, can be explained in part by considering some defining features of US political culture and, in particular, attitudes towards government. It explains the right-wing populism that has been a recurrent and ingrained feature of the political process over a long period. The book discusses structural characteristics of the American state that appear to be of particular significance in shaping attitudes, as well as some other ideas and frames brought to the forefront by the Trump campaign during the course of 2015 and 2016. It also considers the shifts and swings amongst voters and suggests that these, alongside ideas about the state and the 'entrepreneurial' efforts of the campaign, form part of the explanation for Trump's eventual victory. The book assesses Trump's ascendancy as a function of, and reaction to, the strategies and discourses pursued in the years preceding 2016 by Republican Party elites. 'Trumpism' and European forms of populism are still in some ways weakly embedded but they may intensify the battles and processes of group competition between different constituencies.
Within the broad context of generalised anti-government ideas and entrenched populist sentiments, other ideas and frames were brought to the forefront by the Trump campaign during the course of 2015 and 2016. Although certainly 'unmoored' as National Review asserted, the Trump campaign's thinking, the frames around which it mobilised, and the ideas that secured its votes had a degree of order as well as roots and association, all of which bear analysis. American conservatism and the Republican Party were transformed over the four decades that preceded the 2016 election. For its part, neo-conservatism or 'national security conservatism' pointed to the political and philosophical principles upon which the US was constructed and encapsulated in founding documents such as the Declaration of lndependence. Alongside populism, Trump's thinking appears at times to owe a debt to ideas traditionally associated with paleo-conservatism, the 'Alt-Right', and to some degree the white nationalist right.
The United States Supreme Court is an important, exciting and controversial institution. This book includes the major decisions of the 2014 and 2015 Supreme Court Term. It examines some of the fascinating policy issues that are central to the Court by examining its contemporary agenda. The book analyses the Court's major decisions on controversial issues such as race, abortion, capital punishment and gay rights. It explains the ideas that underpinned the creation of the Supreme Court in the first place and how and why it has changed over the years. The book then investigates how the framers of the Constitution envisaged the nature and the role of the Supreme Court, and how and why these have evolved. With examples, it also explains the process by which the personal, the judicial and the political are interwoven in some of the Court's most important cases. Next, the book takes up the specifically judicial and legal basics of the Court's structure and processes and looks at the rules and procedures that govern the Justices' work. The key concept of judicial review, the source of the Court's power is then examined. The book moves on to analyse one of the most controversial features of the contemporary Supreme Court, the process of appointing new Justices, and examines the politicisation of the appointment process. Finally, it explores how powerful is the Court and what is its role in American government and politics.
This chapter considers the shifts and swings amongst voters and suggests that these, alongside ideas about the state and the 'entrepreneurial' efforts of the campaign, form part of the explanation for Donald Trump's eventual victory. Whatever their limits and flaws, the exit polls provide the most helpful starting point for a discussion. The results reveal that the Trump electorate was significantly more male (53 per cent of men supported Trump) than female (42 per cent). More importantly, while some of the figures have been fiercely contested, and although Hillary Clinton won very large majorities amongst the minority electorate, the exit polls suggest some significant swings to the Republicans among minorities when set against the 2012 presidential election. Clinton not only represented 'big government' and the status quo, but also the elites that promoted trade liberalisation, financialisation and the politics of the 'new economy' that had so brutally displaced the old.
Within Parliament, both House of Commons and House of Lords were for most purposes co-equal, but in matters of money the Commons asserted the right to initiate taxation. Under the Parliament 1911 Act, a money bill becomes law one month after leaving the Commons, whether approved by the Lords or not. The Act also reduced the maximum life of a Parliament from seven years to five. The Parliament Acts deal exclusively with powers. Following the rejection of the 1909 budget, it was Conservative peers who argued for a reform of composition: they preferred that to limiting the powers of the House. The fate of the House of Lords Reform Bill in 2012 meant that reform of the Lords was off the government's agenda for the rest of the Parliament and, in the eyes of many politicians, for the foreseeable future.