Antonin Scalia's greatest legacy will be the originalist stamp he put on the Supreme Court, writes CMC Prof. Ralph Rossum in an opinion piece in the Washington Examiner.
Rossum, the Salvatori Professor of American Constitutionalism, noted that briefs citing a constitutional originalist argument went from 7 percent of the total briefs filed to 35 percent in Scalia's two decades on the court.
"Scalia arrived at a Supreme Court where the justices were generally results-oriented, embracing some notion of a "Living Constitution" — the belief that the Constitution is essentially an empty vessel into which they could pour whatever new wine they wished. They saw the Constitution as having no permanent and fixed meaning but rather as a living, evolving document that must be interpreted to conform to the times. Scalia utterly rejected that view. He insisted instead that the times must conform to the Constitution, and he pulled (initially single-handedly and later in tandem with Justice Clarence Thomas) the Court in an originalist direction. "
Read Rossum's full article on the Examiner's site.