The Constitution as an Obstacle

The binary distinction between “Normativism” and “Anti-Normativism” may fall short of serving as a stable foundation upon which the character of constitutional law is to be assessed. While an appealing heuristic , it often oversimplifies rather complex discussions underlying the question as to the specific properties of rules and ruleness, of power and authority on the constitutional level. At the same time it tends to divide what is not necessarily to be separated, such as realist approaches to the application of legal rules and a formalist(ic) understanding of the framework determining this application. This contribution will argue in favor of overcoming the “Normativism”/”Anti-Normativism” division by perceiving constitutional law as a normative (and normatively relevant) obstacle to political action taken even according to realist conceptions.