Thursday, May 28, 2009

Judging Sotomayor (in One Sentence or Less)

Scholars, lawyers and even one of our favourite U.S. law bloggers weigh in on Justice Sotomayor's judicial record in a New Yok Times article today.

See Sotomayor’s Appellate Opinions Are Unpredictable, Lawyers and Scholars Say.

The article falls quite a bit short.

Reducing complex appellate judicial opinions into single sentence decision-bites for the purpose of pigeonholing "whose side a judge is on" strikes me as neither an illuminating nor academically honest pursuit.

It may simply be an American rite-of-passage around Supreme Court nominations, but as Walter Olsen correctly implies in the Times article, such analysis is unlikely to lead to much more than uninformed caricature attacks. 

This brand of commentary is, of course, not without its own irony, given the ready propensity of Justice Sotomayor's critics to cast aspersions on the nominee's own intellectual depth.

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