Chief justice vexed by politics of judicial confirmations

Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr. expressed concern that the process of confirming federal judges has become too politicized.

cjrobertsSpeaking at the University of Arizona’s law school Wednesday, Roberts said that the judiciary operates completely independent of the politics that are involved in both the executive and legislative branches. Politicized confirmation processes threaten that independence, Roberts said.

“I think we need to have a broader recognition that we are not part of the political process, that we are not representatives of either an administration or a confirming Senate on the court,” Roberts said, according to an AP report. “Your perspective on everything changes the moment you take the judicial oath.”

He said he is not alone in his worry over partisan judicial confirmations. “The courts as a whole are very concerned about partisanship, politicization, seeping into the judicial branch,” he said.

Roberts did add that he thinks his own Senate confirmation was fair, noting that he received “significant support from both sides of the aisle. But that’s not always the case, and what do we do about it?”

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