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The Power of Precedent$
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Michael J. Gerhardt

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780195150506

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2008

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195150506.001.0001

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Nonjudicial Precedent

Nonjudicial Precedent

(p.111) Nonjudicial Precedent 4
The Power of Precedent

Michael J. Gerhardt (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter suggests that precedent is often discounted as a source in constitutional decision making because it is usually understood narrowly as judicial decisions. But it shows that a broader definition of precedent encompasses nonjudicial precedent (any of the past constitutional judgments of nonjudicial actors which judicial or other authorities seek to invest with normative power). It shows how nonjudicial precedent is important not only to courts, but to nonjudicial actors.

Keywords:   precedent, nonjudicial precedent, constitutional law, Supreme Court, presidents, Congress

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