Mark Houston, a third year law student at Albany Law School, graduated from SUNY Buffalo where he studied Anthropology and Geology. Prior to law school, he was a project director for a cultural resource management firm for several years working closely with state, federal, and tribal agencies.
Presently, Mark interns with the Environmental, Health, and Safety Counsel at General Electric Power & Water. He is also the Vice-President for the Pro Bono Program at Albany Law School and an Editor-in-Chief for the student section of the New York State Bar Environmental Section's newsletter, The New York Environmental Lawyer.
Mark wrote this essay for Prof. Bonventre’s Judicial Process Seminar, Fall 2013.
A little over seventy-three years ago, future Supreme Court Justice Robert Jackson presented “A Square Deal for the Court.”[i] While serving as United States Attorney General, Jackson presented his arguments in support of a shift in the Court’s analysis of constitutional issues.[ii]
Specifically, he supported the Court’s shift toward judicial restraint when interpreting legislation related to the “New Deal.”[iii] While defending the Court’s shift, his argument proved oddly prophetic of the views of future justices in defending the court and introspective as to the cyclical nature of the Court.
In his address, Jackson came to the defense of the Court, foreshadowing the behavior of future justices of the Court. His direct defense of the shift in the Court’s ethos has been repeated by many justices after him.