American Bar Association Will Not Vet Biden’s Judicial Nominations
For the past 70 or so years, the American Bar Association has rated federal judicial nominations. For most of that time, the ABA has conducted its evaluations prior to nomination. That is, the White House has provided the ABA with the names it was considering, and the ABA provided its evaluation privately. In some cases, a “Not Qualified” rating would discourage the White House from going forward with the nomination, other times not.
The George W. Bush administration broke with this tradition, in part due to empirical evidence that the ABA graded on a curve, giving prospective conservative nominees poorer evaluations than prospective liberal nominees with equivalent experience. The Trump Administration likewise did not allow for pre-nomination ABA evaluation, while the Obama Administration did.
The Biden Administration will follow the lead of Bush and Trump, rather than Obama, when it comes to the ABA’s role in the judicial nomination process. As first reported by the Washington Post, the Biden Administration is c
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