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The Tie Goes to Freedom

Justice Anthony M. Kennedy on Liberty

Helen J. Knowles

At the ideological center of the Supreme Court sits Anthony M. Kennedy, whose pivotal role on the Rehnquist Court is only expected to grow in importance now that he is the lone "swing Justice" on the Roberts Court. The Ties Goes to Freedom is the first book-length analysis of Kennedy, and it challenges the conventional wisdom that his jurisprudence is inconsistent and incoherent.

Using the hot-button issues of privacy rights, race, and free speech, this book demonstrates how Kennedy forcefully articulates a libertarian constitutional vision. The Tie Goes to Freedom fills two significant voids—one examining the jurisprudence of the man at the ideological center of the Supreme Court, the other demonstrating the compatibility of an expansive judicial role with libertarian political theory.
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Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
Pages: 312Size: 6 1/4 x 9
978-0-7425-6257-8 • Hardback • February 2009 • $58.00 • (£39.95) - Currently out of stock. Copies will arrive soon.
978-0-7425-6608-8 • eBook • February 2009 • $57.99 • (£39.95)
Helen J. Knowles is assistant professor of political science at State University of New York at Oswego.
Chapter 1 Introduction. Shall We Call It the Kennedy Court?
Chapter 2 Chapter 1. Justice Kennedy, On Liberty
Chapter 3 Chapter 2. "Speech Is the Beginnng of Thought"
Chapter 4 Chapter 3. If Rational Basis Means Anything . . .
Chapter 5 Chapter 4. When Only Strict Scrutiny Will Do
Chapter 6 Chapter 5. Liberty, Exercised Responsibly
Chapter 7 Conclusion. "It all depends on Justice Kennedy"
This is an extensive, thought-provoking look at judicial decision making that tackles complex issues. Recommended for law and academic libraries.
Library Journal

Knowles presents an impressive discussion of several cases. Another strength of this work is Knowles' ability to buttress her arguments between and among chapters... forming clear connections throughout the book. Knowles' work packs a punch and could be considered required reading for any number of undergraduate and graduate courses. This book is one of the more interesting and well written books that I have read in recent years.
Tobias Gibson, Monmouth College; Journal of Law & Politics

Helen Knowles has done us a great service in deconstructing Justice Kennedy's faint-hearted libertarianism and helping us better understand the "sweet mystery" of his jurisprudence.
Ilya Shapiro; Harvard Journal Of Law and Public Policy

.... [offers] an insightful and careful analysis of [Kennedy's] opinions in important areas of constitutional law. Moreover, in her analysis of those opinions, she does uncover some themes that help explain Kennedy's outcomes. And because Kennedy does, in fact, remain the "man in the middle," it is essential for those of us who care about constitutional law to understand his thinking, whatever it might be.
Geoffrey R. Stone, The University of Chicago Law School; Political Science Quarterly

If one does not have preconceived notions regarding Kennedy, it is hard not to admire him after reading this book. The cases Knowles selects cast Kennedy, who often acts as a swing vote, in a golden light— as a passionate fighter for individual rights, equality, and tolerance. Kennedy's supporters and critics will find the analysis of the justice's jurisprudence provoking; the book, however, has much more to offer than a simple review of case law.... The Ties Goes to Freedom will appeal to readers for these and other intriguing issues that lurk just beneath the surface of Knowles's analysis.

The Tie Goes to Freedom is a...book of...interest to academicians....Knowles’ introduction and conclusion are clear and succinct.
The Federal Lawyer

Everyone who seeks to understand today's Supreme Court—Anthony Kennedy's Supreme Court—will profit from reading Helen Knowles's sympathetic but not uncritical discussion of Justice Kennedy's 'modest libertarianism,' and especially her treatment of Justice Kennedy's concern that liberty be exercised responsibly.
Mark Tushnet, William Nelson Cromwell Professor of Law, Harvard Law School

Despite decades of conservative complaints about judicial activism, the Supreme Court continues to defend constitutional liberty. In a thoughtful and engaging analysis of Justice Kennedy's libertarian constitutional vision, Helen Knowles explains why the tie still goes to freedom.
Thomas M. Keck, Associate Professor of Political Science, Maxwell School of Syracuse University

Justice Kennedy's jurisprudence is of obvious significance and Helen Knowles has done an exceptional amount of research on that jurisprudence. The result is a series of fascinating insights on the most central and centrist thinker on the contemporary Supreme Court. This is the first place to look for hints about how the Supreme Court may respond to a new administration.
Mark Graber, professor of law and government, University of Maryland School of Law