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BOOK REVIEW: THE IMPEACHMENT OF CHIEF JUSTICE DAVID BROCK – JUDICIAL INDEPENDENCE AND CIVIC POPULISM

Author:

Markus Zimmer

Founding President of IACA, President of IACA Advisory Council, US
About Markus

Ed.D.  Harvard University

Ed.M.  Harvard University

Fulbright Scholar, University of Zuerich

M.A.  University of Utah

B.A.  University of Utah

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Abstract

This article reviews The Impeachment of Chief Justice David Brock – Judicial Independence and Civic Populism, published in 2018 by Lexington Books, co-authored by John Cerullo and David C. Steelman. The book is an historic chronicle and analysis of events in the increasingly fractious relationship between the legislative and judicial powers of state government in the last four decades in the U.S. state of New Hampshire that culminated in an effort by the Senate Judiciary Committee to impeach Chief Justice David A. Brock. The narrative identifies, traces and documents the meandering sources of that effort against a national movement emphasizing enhanced institutional independence within state judicial systems by shedding the traditional constraints and controls over state courts exercised by elected bodies. Simultaneously, it scrutinizes growing resistance within populist pockets of the New Hampshire State Legislature in particular and the state’s population in general against the presumptive hubris of the state judiciary to arrogate unto itself far-reaching decision-making authority and to demonstrate in its internal affairs a clear disregard of and even contempt for basic canons of judicial ethics. These tendencies are viewed as particularly egregious in the Supreme Court of New Hampshire as it migrates from adjudicating narrowly defined issues of law and fact on appeal to drafting judgments mandating, for example, broad public education funding initiatives grounded in its own views of what constitute fundamental human rights and the social policies that flow from them. Other misbehavior touching on judicial conduct prohibitions culminated in a variety of disciplinary proposals, including impeaching Chief Justice David Brock, and other initiatives seeking to rein in the excesses of the state judiciary.
How to Cite: Zimmer, M., 2018. BOOK REVIEW: THE IMPEACHMENT OF CHIEF JUSTICE DAVID BROCK – JUDICIAL INDEPENDENCE AND CIVIC POPULISM. International Journal for Court Administration, 9(2), pp.43–44. DOI: http://doi.org/10.18352/ijca.261
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Published on 17 Jul 2018.

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