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Althouse: Why cameras belong in the Supreme Court

Ann Althouse wrote this terrific post Saturday on why she has changed her mind about Sen. Arlen Specter's pending legislation to force the camera eye into the nation's high court. In a long post where she links Dahlia Lithwick's description of John Roberts and confesses she herself wants to watch the oral arguments on television, Althouse adds:

"[T]he cameras would expose the Justices who cling to their seats despite declining ability. It is true that the journalists in the courtroom might tell us if a Justice no longer manages to sit upright and look alert. But the regular gaze of the television cameras would create a permanent but subtle pressure on the Justices to think realistically about whether they still belong on the Court. Self-interest would motivate them to step down gracefully and not cling too long to the position of power the Constitution entitles them to. I think this new pressure would serve the public interest. It would institute a valuable check on the life tenure provision, which has, in modern times, poured too much power into the individuals who occupy the Court."

What do you think? Would the pressure help the courts? Would it improve the quality of court-centric journalism? My inclination is yes.

Posted by Laurel Newby on December 12, 2005 at 02:31 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

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