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Mark Tushnet, Alternative Forms of Judicial Review, 280 Revista de Direito Administrativo 15 (2021).

Abstract: The invention in the late twentieth century of what I call weak-form systems of judicial review provides us with the chance to see in a new light some traditional debates within U.S. constitutional law and theory, which are predicated on the fact that the United States has strong-form judicial review. Strong- and weak-form systems operate on the level of constitutional design, in the sense that their characteristics are specified in constitutional documents or in deep-rooted constitutional traditions. After sketching the differences between strong- and weak-form systems, I turn to design features that operate at the next lower level. Here legislatures or courts specify whether their enactments or decisions will receive strong- or weak-form treatment. I examine examples of legislative allocations of issues to strong- and weak-form review and identify some practical and conceptual problems with such allocations. Then I examine judicial allocations — of the courts’ own decisions — to Strong- or weak-form categories. Here I consider Thayerian judicial review and what Professor Dan Coenen has called semisubstantive doctrines as examples of judicial choices to give their decisions weak-form effects. My conclusion is that these allocation strategies reproduce within strong- and weakform systems the issues that arise on the level of constitutional design. Weak-form systems and allocation may seem to alleviate some difficultiesassociated with strong-form systems in constitutional democracies. My analysis suggests that those difficulties may persist even when alternatives to strong-form judicial review are adopted.