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The Kind of Judge We Need

Jan 17, 2019 - The New York Times

“Why do judges write?” Judge Patricia Wald asked in a 1995 article. “Why do we not simply decree results in individual cases and, as necessary, announce broader commandments about what the law requires?”

Judge Wald, who at the time was a former chief judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, proceeded to answer her own questions. Explaining “why we decide as we do,” she wrote, was “one of the few ways we have to justify our power.” Fu...