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#81560
Complete Question Explanation

The correct answer choice is (A).

Answer choice (A): This is the correct answer choice.

Answer choice (B):

Answer choice (C):

Answer choice (D):

Answer choice (E):

This explanation is still in progress. Please post any questions below!
 kmpaez
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#42859
I correctly chose answer choice A, but do not fully understand why answer choices C and D are incorrect?
 Adam Tyson
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#43019
There are at least two problems with answer C, kmpaez, and one of those is the word "most" - there is no evidence in the passage to support the claim that most laws are applied based on substantive, rather than formal, reasoning. They are more common in the U.S. than in England, but that doesn't get us anywhere near "most". The second problem is perhaps a bigger one, and that is that substantive reasons are NOT legal in nature, but according to the passage "are based on moral, economic, political, and other considerations." They supplement our understanding of the law, but they are not themselves the law.

As to answer D, there is nothing in the passage that suggests anything about how often judges get their specific rationale from substantive reasoning, nor is there any suggestion that substantive reasoning is ever used to support a complete disregard of the law. Instead, the suggestion is that substantive reasoning is used to interpret and apply the law in ways that may not comply with the formal language of the law, but instead with the underlying intent or purpose of the law. Judges who follow substantive reasoning rather than formal reasoning may come to a decision that appears to be contradictory to the formal letter of the law, but that doesn't mean they are disregarding the law, but instead interpreting it in a particular way. That's the difference between the formal and substantive approaches - both are about following the law, but with potentially opposite results.
 flowskiferda
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#82888
I also chose A correctly, but I still do not quite see why D is wrong. You write that there is no "suggestion that substantive reasoning is ever used to support a complete disregard of the law." Yet line 55 states that substantive reasoning "has resulted in statutory interpretations so liberal that the texts of some statutes have been ignored altogether." This, to me, seems like a good match for the "specific rationale for disregarding the the laws of the land" in choice D. Is this wrong because "the law" would also include the substantive reasons that have been used to ignore the written texts, meaning part of the law is not ignored?
 Adam Tyson
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#83392
I think that's a good way of looking at it, flowskiferda. To the judge applying substantive reasoning, they are following the law rather than disregarding it, even if their decision appears to conflict with the actual text.

And then there is the problem in answer D with the word "often." The line you cited might support that such decisions sometimes happen, but it would be too much of a stretch for this Must Be True question to say this happens often. Much like the word "most" in answer C, this word should raise suspicion and is ultimately enough to call the answer a loser.

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