SCC as Greater Influence on Foreign Law Than the US Supreme Court

That’s the proposition advanced in an interview with Justice Ginsburg reported in the NYT and the Post yesterday. She comments on the comparative law question:

“Why shouldn’t we look to the wisdom of a judge from abroad with at least as much ease as we would read a law review article from a professor?”

For Slaw readers, the most interesting line is:

The Canadian Supreme Court, she said, is “probably cited more widely abroad than the U.S. Supreme Court.” There is one reason for that, she said: “You will not be listened to if you don’t listen to others.”

This sounds right for a number of reasons, but is there any statistical evidence that it’s true? Any readers seen any such data?


  1. If indeed our our Supreme Court is more influential in foreign jurisprudence than its U.S. counterpart, it is flattering to think that this is a result of greater merit — as Justice Ginsberg seems to imply — but hard not to think that our participation in Commonwealth jurisprudence hasn’t at least as much to do with it.