The late Justice Antonin Scalia of the US Supreme Court had a massive influence on interpretation1. At a 2011 conference, Pagone J said it was a ‘daunting privilege’ to introduce the American judge2. His ‘originalist’ ideas on how the US constitution should be read3 – what framers meant at the time – now dominates debate. Our High Court, however, generally rejects ‘trapped-in-time’ approaches to the Australian constitution. Scalia J was also highly influential on statutory interpretation, to which he applied his strict ‘textualism’4. We have not embraced this in Australia either, where a purposive approach has long been required. iTip – as a Scalia J sampler, try his ground-shaking majority opinion in the 2008 gun rights case, District of Columbia v Heller5.
Jeremy Geale – Tax Counsel Network
See here for the official PDF of interpretationNOW! Episode 9
In this episode:
Writer – Gordon Brysland, Producer – Michelle Janczarski.
1 Biskupic, American Original (2009) – biography.
2 Pagone J, Introducing Justice Scalia (2011).
3 Scalia, A Matter of Interpretation (1997).
4 Scalia & Garner, Reading Law (2012).
5 District of Columbia v Heller 554 US 570 (2008).