by Shannen W. Coffin

This should add some fuel to the fire of the Ramesh-Andy debate over whether the public really cares about judicial confirmation battles or not. “A national, scientific survey of 800 registered voters reveals that an overwhelming majority of Americans believe that qualified candidates for our nation’s highest courts deserve and up or down vote in the in the US Senate. The survey further revealed that Americans want partisan politics removed from the judicial confirmation process and that our Judges should focus on applying existing laws and not attempt to make new law in the courtroom.” See the Judicial Nomination Network’s website, here.

Among the findings of the poll, conducted by Ayres-McHenry and Associates:

**Eighty-two percent of voters agree that “if a nominee for any federal judgeship is well-qualified, he or she deserves an up or down vote on the floor of the Senate.

**By 78 to 12 percent, voters agree that Senators have a constitutional duty to vote on judicial nominations.

**Seventy-five percent of voters agree that “President Bush should keep his promise made during the campaign to nominate a U.S. Supreme Court justice who will apply existing law, not make new law.

**Overall, 67 percent of voters agree we should take politics out of the courts and out of the confirmation process.

For those who follow this sort of thing, demographics of the sample: By gender, 48 percent of the respondents are male and 52 percent are female. By political party, 35 percent are Republican and 33 percent Democrat, with the remainder Independent or other. By race, the sample is 80 percent white, 10 percent African-American, 8 percent Hispanic, and 1 percent Asian.

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