This article examines the often-heard claim that textualism in statutory interpretation is mandated by constitutional separation of powers. The claim is examined using both the formalist and the functionalist approaches to separation of powers doctrine under the Federal Constitution. As we shall see, these doctrinal inquiries quickly devolve into examinations of the purposes and justification of textualism, and of separating the three branches of government. The article concludes not only that standing constitutional doctrine fails to support the textualist claim, but also that, as a matter of fact, textualism is a judicial philosophy that runs counter to the most basic principles of constitutional separation of powers.
Ofer Raban, Is Textualism Required by Constitutional Separation of Powers, 49 Loy. L.A. L. Rev. 421 (2016)