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September 21, 2005

Will the next SCOTUS nominee have any criminal law background?

As evidenced by articles at Slate and from the AP, the beltway buzz over the possible next Supreme Court nominee is starting to grow.  And if past is prologue, we should expect a nominee from the White House soon: President Bush announced John Roberts' nomination 18 days after Justice O'Connor announced her retirement, and Wednesday marks 18 days since Chief Justice Rehnquist passed away.

In the run up to the selection of John Roberts, I spotlighted in a series of posts the limited trial court experience and criminal law experience among the current Justices.  And, because Judge Roberts is lacking in both these areas, I am especially hopeful — though not particularly optimistic — that the name which emerges from the White House short list might contribute to SCOTUS diversity across these important dimensions.

Some prior related posts:

UPDATEThis Washington Times article states that a "new name has emerged on the longer list of candidates — Judge Consuelo M. Callahan of the Ninth Circuit."  As detailed in this press release at the time of her confirmation to the Ninth Circuit, Judge Callahan was a state prosecutor for 10 years and also a state trial judge for 4 years.  And, interestingly, this DOJ bio indicates that Judge Callahan worked for the Sacramento County Public Defender's Office while attending McGeorge School of Law.  Also, thanks to this playful profile by A3G, I see that a story about Judge Callahan ran in last November's Daily Journal under the title "Tough Customer: 9th Circuit Judge Consuelo Callahan Has a Playful Side But Not When It Comes to Sentencing."

September 21, 2005 at 01:27 AM | Permalink

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Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Will the next SCOTUS nominee have any criminal law background?:

» What Expertise Should O'Connor's Replacement Have from ProfessorBainbridge.com
Doug Berman of the Sentencing Law and Policy Blog points out the limited criminal law experience of the sitting Supreme Court justices and expresses the hope that O'Connor's replacement will be chosen to fill out the Court's expertise in that [Read More]

Tracked on Sep 21, 2005 3:27:55 PM

» What Expertise Should O'Connor's Replacement Have from ProfessorBainbridge.com
Doug Berman of the Sentencing Law and Policy Blog points out the limited criminal law experience of the sitting Supreme Court justices and expresses the hope that O'Connor's replacement will be chosen to fill out the Court's expertise in that [Read More]

Tracked on Sep 21, 2005 3:29:44 PM

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