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Sheldon Whitehouse

Battle over Scalia's seat feeds perception that Supreme Court is less neutral and more partisan

Battle over Scalia's seat feeds perception that Supreme Court is less neutral and more partisan

The coming partisan battle over who will fill the seat of the late Justice Antonin Scalia is certain to fuel growing public perceptions that the Supreme Court is becoming more of a political body than a neutral forum for deciding cases based on the law.

The court has long tried to maintain the image of being distinct from the expressly political branches of the government. Although legal scholars disagree about how much the justices’ political views determine their decisions, the justices themselves have taken pains to insist that they don’t.

But repeated political battles over confirmations and the partisan forces that have swirled around Congress and the White...

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