Accessible Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter July 8, 2017

The Power to Judge, the Power to Act: the Argentine Supreme Court as a Policymaker

Mario Campora

Abstract

Even though the role of courts to enforce economic, social and cultural rights through structural remedies is well established, the implementation stage of rulings following successful litigation seems to be an area of research still in the making. In the Global South, certain constitutional courts have taken on such litigation as a way to advance economic and social rights. The Judiciary Power thus became a key actor in the framing and execution of public policies. This paper examines how the Argentine Supreme Court has intervened after 2001 in public policies regarding the enforcement of social security, environmental and human rights.

Acknowledgments

This paper benefitted from discussions at the 2017 Law and Development Conference in Buenos Aires, Argentina, where an early version was presented. The author is grateful to the anonymous reviewer for his/her constructive comments. Yet the views expressed herein, as well as any errors or omissions, should be attributed solely to the author.

References

Addresses and Papers of Charles Evans Hughes, Governor of New York, 1906–1908 (New York and London: G. P. Putnam’s sons, 1908). Search in Google Scholar

Alston, P. and G. Quinn, The Nature and Scope of States Parties’ Obligations under the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, 9 Human Rights Quarterly, no. 2 (1987), 156–229.10.2307/762295 Search in Google Scholar

Argentine Federal Laws 24.241 (1993); 25.561 (2001); 25.972 (2004); 26.077 (2006); 26.204 (2006); 26.339 (2008); 26.456 (2008); 26.563 (2009); 26.729 (2011); 26.896 (2013); 27.200 (2015). Search in Google Scholar

Argentine Federal Constitution, available at: <http://www.biblioteca.jus.gov.ar/Argentina-Constitution.pdf>, accessed 10 May 2017. Search in Google Scholar

Bidart Campos, G., Manual de la Constitución Reformada (Buenos Aires: Ediar, 1997). Search in Google Scholar

Constitution of India, available at: <http://indiacode.nic.in/coiweb/welcome.html>, accessed 10 May 2017. Search in Google Scholar

Constitutional Court of South Africa, Government of the Republic of South Africa and Others v Irene Grootboom and Others, 2001 SA 46 (CC), 4 October 2000. Search in Google Scholar

Constitutional Court of South Africa, Minister of Health vs Treatment Action Campaign (5) sa 721 (CC) (2002). Search in Google Scholar

Courtis, C., Courts and the Legal Enforcement of Economic, Social and Cultural Rights: Experiences of Justiciability (Geneva: International Commission of Jurists, 2008). Search in Google Scholar

Dahl, R.A., Decision-Making in a Democracy: The Supreme Court as a National Policy-Maker, Journal of Public Law, no. 6 (1957), 279–295. Search in Google Scholar

de Moerloose, S., The World Bank´S Sustainable Development Approach and the Need for a Unified Field of Law and Development Studies in Argentina, 8 Law and Development Review, no. 2 (2015), 361–388. Search in Google Scholar

Dugard, J., “Courts and Structural Poverty in South Africa: To What Extent Has the Constitutional Court Expanded Access and Remedies to the Poor”, in D.B. Maldonado (ed.), Constitutionalism of the Global South, the Activist Tribunals of India, South Africa and Colombia (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2013). Search in Google Scholar

Federal Courts of the United States, Wyatt v Stickney, 344F. Supp. 373 (M.D. Ala. 1972). Search in Google Scholar

Ferreyra, R.G., Fundamentos Constitucionales (Buenos Aires: Ediar, 2013). Search in Google Scholar

Fiss, O.M., Foreword: The Forms of Justice, 93 Harvard Law Review, no. 1 (1979), 1–58. Search in Google Scholar

Gargarella, R., P. Domingo and T. Roux (eds.), Courts and Social Transformation in New Democracies. an Institutional Voice for the Poor? (Farnham: Ashgate, 2006). Search in Google Scholar

Gloppen, S., Legal Enforcement of Social Right: Enabling Conditions and Impact Assessment, 02 Erasmus Law Review, no. 4 (2009), 465–480. Search in Google Scholar

Guruswamy, M. and B. Aspatwar, “Access to Justice in India: The Jurisprudence (And Self-Perception) of the Supreme Court”, in D.B. Maldonado (ed.), Constitutionalism of the Global South, the Activist Tribunals of India, South Africa and Colombia (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2013). Search in Google Scholar

Herrero, A., La incidencia de la Corte Suprema de Justicia en la formulación de políticas públicas: una exploración empírica del caso argentino, 49 Revista Política, no. 1 (2011), 71–106. Search in Google Scholar

Mate, M., Two Paths to Judicial Power: The Basic Structure Doctrine and Public Interest Litigation in Comparative Perspective, 12 San Diego International Law Journal (2010), 175–222. Search in Google Scholar

Montesquieu, C., The Spirit of Laws (Ontario: Batoche Books, Kitchener, 2001). Search in Google Scholar

Nagel, R.F., Separation of Powers and the Scope of Federal Equitable Remedies, 30 Stanford Law Review (1977–1978), 661–724. Search in Google Scholar

Puthucherril, T.G., “Balancing the Scales of Justice in India: From Parliamentary Supremacy to Judicial Supremacy and Back?”, in R. Devlin and A. Dodek (eds.), Regulating Judges (Edward Elgar Publishing, 2016), 1–19. Search in Google Scholar

Rosenberg, G.N., The Road Taken: Robert A. Dahl´S Decision-Making in a Democracy: The Supreme Court as a National Policy-Maker, 50 Emory Law Journal (2001), 613–630. Search in Google Scholar

Roux, T., Understanding Grootboom – A Response to Cass R. Sunstein, 12 Constitutional Forum, no. 2 (2002), 41–51. Search in Google Scholar

Santiago, A., La Corte Suprema y el control político: función política y posibles modelos institucionales (Buenos Aires: Ábaco, 1999). Search in Google Scholar

Staveland-Sæter, K., Litigating the Right to a Healthy. Environment Assessing the Policy Impact of “The Mendoza Case” (Bergen: CMI, 2010). Search in Google Scholar

Sunstein, C.R., Designing Democracy: What Constitutions Do (New York: Oxford University Press, 2001). Search in Google Scholar

Supreme Court of Argentina CSJN, Fallos: 32:120. CSJN, Fallos: 329:2316. CSJN, Fallos: 329:3089. CSJN, Fallos: 329:3258. CSJN, Fallos: 330:22. CSJN, Fallos: 330:2746. CSJN, Fallos: 330:3663. CSJN, Fallos: 330:4134. CSJN, Fallos: 330:4590. CSJN, Fallos: 330:4866. CSJN, Fallos: 331:1622. CSJN, Fallos: 337:1263. CSJN, Fallos: 337:1564. CSJN, Fallos: 339:1793. Search in Google Scholar

Supreme Court of the United States 347 U.S. 483 (1954); 349 U.S. 294 (1955). 402 U.S. 1 (1971)437 U.S. 678 (1978). Search in Google Scholar

The Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, available at: <http://www.gov.za/documents/ constitution/constitution-republic-south-africa-1996-1>, accessed 10 May 2017. Search in Google Scholar

Tushnet, M., Social Welfare Rights and the Forms of Judicial Review, 82 Texas Law Review (2004), 1895–1919. Search in Google Scholar

United Nations Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR), General Comment No.3, on the nature of States parties obligations (Art. 2, para. 1 of the Covenant) (Fifth session, 1990). Search in Google Scholar

United Nations Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR), General Comment No. 5, on Persons with Disabilities (Eleventh Session, 1994). Search in Google Scholar

Weaver, R., The Rise and Decline of Structural Remedies, 41 San Diego Law Review (2004), 1617–1632. Search in Google Scholar

Published Online: 2017-7-8
Published in Print: 2017-9-26

© 2017 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston