Bork on Barak
Former Supreme Court nominee Robert Bork is opposing Solicitor General Elena Kagan’s nomination to the high court because she admires Aharon Barak – the former chief justice of Israel’s supreme court whom conservatives regard as an activist liberal judge.
In a conference call sponsored by Americans United for Life, Bork said that Kagan’s praise for Barak shows she doesn’t yet have a mature judicial philosophy. He called Barak “the worst judge on the planet,” who touts his own reputation as an activist judge in Israel.
“It’s disqualifying in and of itself,” Bork said of Kagan’s opinion of Barak.
When she introduced him at Harvard Law School in 2006, Kagan reportedly called Barak “her hero” and praised him as “the judge who has best advanced democracy, human rights, the rule of law and justice.”
I haven’t read much of Aharon Barak’s decisions, but I found his theoretical writings very interesting and informative. For the life of me I can’t understand why his Judicial Discretion has not been reprinted. In the meantime, try out his The Judge in a Democracy and Purposive Interpretation in Law to get a taste of his writings. As this review points out, while the topics of Barak’s books may be the same in English and Hebrew, they were written for different audiences.