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The role of qualifications in the confirmation of nominees to the U.S. Supreme Court

Epstein, Lee, Segal, Jeffrey A., Staudt, Nancy and Lindstadt, Rene 2005. The role of qualifications in the confirmation of nominees to the U.S. Supreme Court. Florida State University Law Review 32 (4) , pp. 1145-1173.

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In light of concerns that politics, philosophy, and ideology now dominate the federal judicial appointment process — a process that many claim should emphasize ethics, competence, and integrity — scholars have offered a range of proposals. A considerable number, though, aim to compel elected actors to focus on the candidates’ qualifications rather than on their political preferences. Without taking a normative position on these sorts of proposals, we demonstrate empirically that the process leading to the appointment of (at least) Supreme Court Justices may not be the “mess” that the proposals suggest. While it is true that U.S. Senators are more likely to cast votes for nominees who are ideologically proximate to them, qualifications also play a significant role in accounting for the choices Senators make.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Department of Politics and International Relations (POLIR)
Subjects: J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
J Political Science > JK Political institutions (United States)
K Law > K Law (General)
ISSN: 0096-3070
Last Modified: 09 Jun 2020 01:43

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