Since the end of the cold war the proliferation of international institutions and courts have strengthened the rule of law at the international level. Today, however even liberal-democratic states question the liberal internationalism on which the international legal system has been based. I argue that the United States, South Africa and India justify the exit from or ignorance of multilateral treaties, institutions and international courts in two ways: first, the multilateral frameworks are said to be illegitimate because they only represent the interests of some states and not of a particular country or region. Second, the institutions (especially courts) are said to take a false legal approach by granting primacy to human rights over state sovereignty. Furthermore, I assess whether and how public law theories like Global Constitutionalism, Global Administrative Law and International Public Authority address these arguments.