This Day in Liberal Judicial Activism—March 26

by Ed Whelan

 2009—In an academic paper titled “Bias and the Bar:  Evaluating the ABA Ratings of Federal Judicial Nominees,” political scientists Richard L. Vining, Jr., Amy Steigerwalt, and Susan Navarro Smelcer present their statistical findings that “suggest the presence of some systematic bias towards Democratic nominees in the ABA’s ratings.”  Among their findings:  “In sum, when we isolate the effect of ideology, we find that, all else being equal, liberal nominees are more likely to receive the highest possible rating than their conservative counterparts.”