Bench Memos

NRO’s home for judicial news and analysis.

Keep Teaching, Chief


Chief Justice John Roberts, talking to high school students in Bethesda yesterday, told them that “having a ‘judicial philosophy’ is not as important as deciding individual cases based on the law, but said judges should never think they hold the solutions to political problems.”

I hope the chief keeps saying this until he gets through to some of his colleagues on the bench who don’t seem to know it.

Roberts also rejected the televising of Supreme Court arguments: “It’s not our job to educate the public. Our job is to decide vitally important cases under the Constitution.”

This is half right.  It is, in important respects, the job of the Court to educate the public.  That’s one reason it publishes opinions.  But that educational purpose would not be advanced by having TV cameras on during oral argument.  It might even be harmed by it.


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