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When a law is passed there are usually public deliberations over the law and drafts of the law are sometimes accompanied by legislative position papers explaining the intent and purpose of the law. Most famous of these, of course, are the Federalist Papers, especially those written by James Madison which in some cases explain the intent and purpose of the various provisions of the Constitution of the United States.

Are such legislative documents and papers admissible in court as evidence for the interpretation of the law? In other words, is legislative intent respected in US legal theory and court practice?

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Are such legislative documents and papers admissible in court as evidence for the interpretation of the law?

Such arguments are allowed if they are relevant although strictly speaking, they are not evidence.

In other words, is legislative intent respected in US legal theory and court practice?

Founder's Intent or Original Meaning is an accepted method of judicial interpretation. However, the extent to which it is used or persuasive is a matter for the individual justices.

This paper will likely give you more information than you want about judicial interpretation.

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