Assumption the careers of justices prior to their

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assumption, the careers of justices prior to their confirmation were examined, and the results largely support this assumption. Table 2 displays the percentages of justices who had various political experience. 29 In each political experience category (except for executive-US experience), justices nominated prior to 1930 had considerably more political experience. In the case of state legislative experience, justices in the pre-1930 group were considerably more likely to have such experience, when compared to the post-1930 group of justices. Although the post-1930 group had more federal, executive experience (40.0% compared to 26.7% for the pre-1930 group), that result may be slightly misleading. Executive-US experience included positions such as Attorneys General and Solicitors General, who must be qualified lawyers, even though they work in the executive branch. This result shows that among justices in the post-1930 group, when they had political experience, such experience was most likely in the executive branch and was related to the law in some capacity. On the other hand, when justices in the pre-1930 group had political experience, it was most likely in the form of state legislative experience. Because the earliest justices in the sample participated in the U.S. Constitution‘s 29 Executive-US experience includes federal Attorneys General and Solicitors General, as well as various cabinet positions. Executive-State experience also includes Attorneys and Solicitors General, as well as state governors. Legislative-US experience includes Senators and Congressmen, as well as experience in the early Continental Congresses. Legislative-State experience includes state senators or representatives, as well as participation in state ratifying conventions or participation in state assemblies. Table 2 Political Experience Executive- US Executive- State Legislative- US Legislative- State Pre-1930 n=30 26.7% n=8 10.0% n=3 26.7% n=8 50.0% n=15 Post-1930 n=20 40.0% n=8 5.0% n=1 20.0% n=4 10.0& n=2
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56 ratification process via state ratifying conventions, the prevalence of state legislative experience among the pre-1930 group is high. Judicial Experience In contrast to the earlier justices political experience, later justices had more judicial experience; the current Court is the first to be comprised of only federal appellate court judges. Although, throughout history, some members of the Court have always been former judges, only recently has the number of former judges on the Court outnumbered members with other, usually political, experience. To test this assumption and to check the validity of the sample, the mean number of years of total judicial experience (for both state and federal courts) was found for the entire population, and then compared to the mean years of judicial experience for the sample.
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