Supreme Individual Court: how the Ministers’ non-decision affects Democracy

The judicialization of politics is a growing phenomenon in Brazil, with each STF Minister giving his particular rhythm to the analysis of cases. This essay intends to analyze to what extent an individual Minister can interfere in the results of relevant judgments, as it is not uncommon to observe episodes in which the Minister asks for more time to examine the case and indefinitely puts a halt in the proceeding’s conclusion. What is the impact of not returning the cases? We face the hypothesis that the “request for examination” is an instrument deliberately used by magistrates with the purpose of preventing the finalization of a court decision. To analyze this hypothesis, based on data made available by the Supreme Court itself, we gathered a quantitative analysis of cases that were awaiting the return of the request for examination at the STF in April 2021 and categorized how long these cases have been awaiting trial and which cases are awaiting trial for the longest time.