By Lee Epstein
From Louis Brandeis to Robert Bork to Clarence Thomas, the nomination of federal judges has generated extreme political clash. With the arriving retirement of 1 or extra ideal courtroom Justices--and threats to filibuster reduce courtroom judges--the choice method might be, once more, the heart of red-hot partisan debate. In recommendation and Consent, top criminal students, Lee Epstein and Jeffrey A. Segal, provide a quick, illuminating Baedeker to this hugely vital method, discussing every thing from constitutional historical past, to an important variations within the nomination of judges and justices, to the function of the Judiciary Committee in vetting nominees. Epstein and Segal make clear the function performed by way of the media, by way of the yank Bar organization, and by means of certain curiosity teams (whose efforts helped defeat pass judgement on Bork). although it's always assumed that political clashes over nominees are a brand new phenomenon, the authors argue that the appointment of justices and judges has continuously been a hugely contentious process--one mostly pushed through ideological and partisan matters. The reader discovers how presidents and the senate have attempted to remake the bench, starting from FDR's debatable "court packing" scheme to the Senate's production in 1978 of 35 new appellate and 117 district courtroom judgeships, permitting the Democrats to form the judiciary for years. The authors finish with attainable "reforms," from the so-called nuclear alternative, wherein a majority of the Senate may perhaps vote to ban filibusters, to the much more dramatic advice that Congress get rid of a judge's existence tenure both via time period limits or obligatory retirement. With key appointments looming at the horizon, suggestion and Consent offers every thing involved voters want to know to appreciate the partisan rows that encompass the judicial nominating method.
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Extra resources for Advice and Consent: The Politics of Judicial Appointments
Byron White (1962–1993) Just six months after Clinton’s inauguration, the Democrat White retired. He had long said he wanted to leave the bench when a Democrat occupied the White House. Harry A. Blackmun (1970–1994) Though appointed by Nixon, Blackmun moved increasingly to the left during his years on the Court. Wanting to ensure that his replacement would also be a liberal, he waited until a Democrat won the presidency. Sandra Day O’Connor (1981–2005) The press reported that O’Connor was disappointed when she thought Al Gore won the presidential election of 2000.
More likely, contemporary victims of impeachment have committed serious ethical or legal transgressions. Paul N. ) made this very point in a speech responding to then-Representative Gerald Ford’s call for the impeachment of Douglas. “The bulk [of impeachments concern] . . judicial misconduct, with scattered instances of non-judicial behavior,” Representative McCloskey said. “In all cases . . 1). 1 When Politics Can Be Deadly: Departures from the Bench in Some Other Countries To say that political considerations may drive departures from the bench is not to equate American practice with norms in other societies.
Unlike judicial salaries, which the Constitution prohibits legislators from decreasing, retirement benefits are subject to adjustment—and adjust Congress has done. Prior to 1869, the legislature made no allowance for pensions. When judges and justices died or resigned, they ceased receiving any salary from the federal government. Not surprisingly, horror stories abound of nineteenth-century judges remaining in their jobs well after their mental capacities and health had long diminished. ” Surely among the one-third was Justice Robert Grier (1846–1870), who, at seventy-five years of age in 1869, was just barely hanging on.