The premise that the U.S. Supreme Court never veers too far off from the dominant national political coalition (Dahl, 1957) has become widely accepted among social scientists today. To fulfill that promise, however, the confirmation process for justices must serve as a plebiscite through which the public can ratify or reject future justices based on their views. Unfortunately, modern confirmation hearings have become an exercise in obfuscation, providing little meaningful dialogue on important issues. Because conservative Republican presidents have made the lion's share of appointments in recent times, social conservatives have most often benefited from a process that has severed the link between Supreme Court nominees and the polity they must serve.
Yalof, D.A. (2008), "Confirmation obfuscation: Supreme Court confirmation politics in a conservative era", Sarat, A. (Ed.) Special Issue Constitutional Politics in a Conservative Era (Studies in Law, Politics, and Society, Vol. 44), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 141-171. https://doi.org/10.1016/S1059-4337(08)00805-3
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