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With the nomination of Elena Kagan to the U.S. Supreme Court, there is a great deal of discussion about the proper role of the courts in general, and "judicial activism" in particular. But what, precisely, is judicial activism? Is the term useful in discussing the decisions of the Court? Is the term invoked unfairly or unevenly by critics of the Court from all sides? Is there a more useful term? These and other questions will be addressed by our panel of experts.


  • Prof. Randy E. Barnett, Carmack Waterhouse Professor of Legal Theory, Georgetown University Law Center
  • Dean Erwin Chemerinsky, Founding Dean, University of California, Irvine School of Law
  • Prof. Pamela S. Karlan, Kenneth and Harle Montgomery Professor of Public Interest Law and Co-Director, Supreme Court Litigation Clinic, Stanford Law School
  • Mr. M. Edward Whelan III, President, Ethics and Public Policy Center
  • Moderator: Dr. John Eastman, Candidate for California State Attorney General and former Dean, Chapman University School of Law