From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Sunstein is among this country's most respected legal scholars [and] One Case at a Time reflects [his] mastery of Supreme Court law, of constitutional theory and of political science...One Case at a Time presents a fascinating argument: that there is a hidden majority of [judicial minimalist] Justices, that it is right in what it is doing and that it is adjudicating in a way that moves beyond the recent ideological stalemate about the Supreme Court's role...[Sunstein's] book demonstrates what a shame it is that the Clinton White House hasn't picked him to serve as a Federal judge. The Reagan and Bush Administrations put accomplished legal theorists on the bench to turn their conservative vision into legal reality. But the Clinton team has failed to follow the Reagan-Bush lead... One Case at a Time makes that reluctance look like a significant lost opportunity. Respectful of the political branches, mindful of the role of the Supreme Court in the whole of American government, this admirable book makes a judicious case for a philosophy of judging as a humble, difficult, essential art. The book also demonstrates that Sunstein would practice that art well. (Lincoln Caplan New York Times Book Review)
In a lucid examination of specific cases, Mr. Sunstein demonstrates how [judicial minimalism] should be done and achieves what has so far been elusive, a genuine theory of judicial minimalism, which many judges strive for but often have difficulty describing or justifying. (The Economist)
With One Case at a Time, Cass Sunstein may well become known as the Nathan Detroit of constitutional law. For this is a shrewd and clever book. (Gary McDowell Washington Times)
In One Case at a Time, Sunstein describes the current Supreme Court's 'judicial minimalism'--deciding cases as narrowly as possible, without widely applicable rules. This position, he urges, can support deliberative democracy, particularly if the issues involved are complex and no citizen consensus has emerged. Sunstein outlines his arguments and applies it in analyzing recent decisions on 'affirmative action, discrimination on the basis of sex and sexual orientation, the right to die, and new issues of free speech raised by...communications technologies.' He then addresses alternatives to minimalism, mainly Justice Scalia's 'democratic formalism' and the complaint that minimalist decisions lack theoretical depth as well as breadth, concluding by summarizing his view of the place of judicial minimalism in a democracy. (Mary Carroll Booklist)