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What is the Rule of Law?

If you agree with the statement that no one should be “above the law,” then you already have an understanding of what the Rule of Law means. In general terms, the Rule of Law is the principle that all people and institutions (including the government) must follow and be accountable to rules of conduct that are applied and enforced in a fair and consistent manner. It is the core value behind the American concept of “government of law, not of men.”

In the context of our court system, the Rule of Law requires court decisions to be made according to the fair and equal application of the law to all people, and not according to the political standing or wealth of the people being judged. In other words, no one should receive favorable treatment in court because of who that person is.

When a person who is famous, popular, wealthy, or socially or politically powerful asks, “Do you KNOW who I am?” The law plainly answers, “No, I do not.”

For more discussion about the Rule of Law, see this article from the American Bar Association.


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