How is it possible, in principle, for SCOTUS justices to interpret the law without also legislating from the bench?

Republican Sen. Mike Braun says Supreme Court was wrong to legalize interracial marriage

“She seems well-qualified. But whenever I vote for a Supreme Court justice it’s going to be, basically, how are you going to interpret the law,” Braun said. “If your record shows that you’re going to be kind of an activist there, I don’t think that’s good, and I don’t think the Founders intended it that way.”

He continued: “Stick with interpreting the law. Don’t legislate from the bench.

Given how legal interpretation works how is it possible, in principle, for a SCOTUS justice to interpret the law without also legislating from the bench?

  • What is the eidos of legislating from the bench?

  • What is the eidos of interpreting the law?

  • What do you consider to be examples of legislating from the bench?

  • What do you consider to be examples of interpreting the law without also legislating from the bench?

Is Shelby County v. Holder an example of interpretation, or legislating from the bench, or both?

Striking down an Act of Congress “is the gravest and most delicate duty that this Court is called on to perform.” Blodgett v. Holden, 275 U. S. 142, 148 (1927) (Holmes, J., concurring). We do not do so lightly. That is why, in 2009, we took care to avoid ruling on the constitutionality of the Voting Rights Act when asked to do so, and instead resolved the case then before us on statutory grounds. But in issuing that decision, we expressed our broader concerns about the constitutionality of the Act. Congress could have updated the coverage formula at that time, but did not do so. Its failure to act leaves us today with no choice but to declare §4(b) unconstitutional. The formula in that section can no longer be used as a basis for subjecting jurisdictions to preclearance.

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