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Law without Future: Anti-Constitutional Politics and the American Right, Jack Jackson

Reviewed by Kathleen Tipler

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The years of the Donald J. Trump administration have been unusually chaotic. Amid this chaos, the political left has bemoaned Trump’s disregard for constitutional norms. In these criticisms of the Trump administration, the left has become—consciously or not—a vocal defender of law and the Constitution. Jack Jackson aims to provoke a careful examination of this situation: of how the political right developed what Jackson argues is an anti-constitutional politics, and of the implications of the left’s recent embrace of constitutionalism.

Jackson makes many claims in this short book. One of his central claims is that the current administration’s approach to the Constitution is not a departure for the contemporary political right. In the first substantive chapter of the book, Jackson argues that while criticisms of the right’s apparent anti-constitutionalism appeared widely after September 11 and the war on terror, the right’s anti-constitutionalism emerged well before then. Jackson makes this argument with an analysis of Bush v. Gore, which has been widely criticized as a “political” opinion (as opposed to a well-crafted and principled “legal” opinion). Jackson argues that the problem with Bush v.

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