Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Gerber on William Penn and the Good Behavior Tenure for Judges

Scott D. Gerber, Ohio Northern University Law, has posted William Penn and the Origins of Judicial Tenure During Good Behavior, which also appears in Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography 136 (July 2012): 233.  Here is the abstract:
Credit: Library of Congress
Scholars typically trace the origins of judicial tenure during good behavior to the 1701 British Act of Settlement. This article, published as the lead article in the July 2012 issue of the Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography, maintains that William Penn anticipated by two decades, in organic laws in both New Jersey and Pennsylvania, the 1701 Act on the importance of this most famous of all institutional solutions to the political theory of an independent judiciary. The article concludes that Penn’s call for judicial tenure during good behavior owes much to his celebrated commitment to liberty.

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