While this is my last planned post on the subject, I continue to welcome comments and suggestions about my attempt to measure judicial ideology. My goal in both my posts here and overall project has been to push forward the effort to better understand the process of judging and the outcomes of judicial decision-making. Judge Richard Posner’s detailed and extremely valuable account of judging in How Judges Think offers one of the most interesting looks into judicial decision-making. However, there has been limited empirical research into the various models of judging like those described by Judge Posner as applied in the real world. Frank Cross has been one of the few that has rigorously tested whether the major models of judging describe judicial behavior for judges at the federal appellate level. There is still an immense amount of work to be done in this area.
Thus far, I have created measures of judicial activism and ideology. I’m currently working on projects to assess the traits of judicial partisanship and independence. My goal is not to just create a typology of judges based upon those measures, but to really have an objective grasp of the differing ways judges in our federal system are reviewing cases. Since I have results based upon my first two measures, I thought it would be worthwhile to consider the Activism and Ideology Scores of a handful of judges.
|Judge||Circuit||Activism Score (Mean = 56.0)||Ideology Score (Midpoint = 0)|
|Deborah L. Cook||6||74.0||77.2|
|Diarmuid F. O’Scannlain||9||57.1||59.7|
|Frank H. Easterbrook||7||33.6||55.8|
|Edith H. Jones||5||68.6||22.0|
|Richard A. Posner||7||68.3||-9.9|
|Jerome A. Holmes||10||89.6||-9.7|
|Ann C. Williams||7||64.1||-31.5|
|Diane P. Wood||7||44.7||-37.2|
|Gilbert S. Merritt, Jr.||6||25.2||-52.4|
|Kim M. Wardlaw||9||92.7||-63.3|