In The FederalistNo. 78, Alexander Hamilton examined the judicial department. He relied on that branch to safeguard the limitations drafted into the Constitution. While the judiciary is "incontestably" and "beyond comparison the weakest of the three departments of power," he conceded, nonetheless, the constitutional limitations on legislative excess "can be preserved in practice no other way than through the medium of courts of justice; whose duty it must be to declare all acts contrary to the manifest tenor of the constitution void."
Ronald D. Rotunda,
The Role of the Modern Supreme Court,
U. Rich. L. Rev.
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