Originalism in Puerto Rico: Original Explanation and its Relation with Clear Text, Broad Purpose and Progressive Policy

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Professor Farinacci Fernós affirms that while never formally adopted, Puerto Rico has always had a unique form of originalist constitutional interpretation that differs from that of the United States. To analyze Puerto Rican originalism, Farinacci Fernós conducts a case study of Ex parte AAR, in which an originalist approach was used in a conservative fashion to deny rights despite the fact that originalism has been distinctively progressive in Puerto Rico. Farinacci Fernós proceeds to discuss substantive constitutionalism, emphasizing the elements that distinguish that of Puerto Rico, specifically clear text, authoritative history and progressive policy provisions, and the different methodologies utilized by Puerto Rico’s Supreme Court. Farinacci Fernós suggests that given the progressive nature of the contents of Puerto Rico’s Constitution as well as the selection of its Framers’, an originalist methodology could be used to guarantee constitutional rights.

Cita: Jorge M. Farinacci Fernós, Originalism in Puerto Rico: Original Explanation and its Relation with Clear Text, Broad Purpose and Progressive Policy, 85 Rev. Jur. UPR 203 (2016).

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