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The ABA's Role in Evaluating Supreme Court Nominees

July 03, 2008
For several decades, the American Bar Association’s Standing Committee on the Federal Judiciary offered its assessment of federal judicial nominations to the Executive Branch and the United States Senate before the nominations were announced to the public. The practice, adopted by the Senate Judiciary Committee in 1948 and by the Executive Branch during the Eisenhower Administration, gave the ABA a quasi-official role in the nominations process. The Association’s ratings, which were based on nominees’ integrity, professional competence, and judicial temperament, became crucial to their successful confirmation.