I have a piece up at TAP arguing that, despite inevitable gnashing of teeth you’ll hear from pundits about how the Supreme Court confirmation process has become too “politicized” and is so uncivil it’s making David Broder roll over in his grave, structurally it actually works pretty well. I’m certainly not going to pretend that it’s some sort of national crisis if a lot of Republican Senators vote against Sotomayor when she inevitably gets confirmed, unless someone can explain exactly what’s wrong with it.
I should also add that my argument shouldn’t be read to imply that I expect the hearings to be illuminating. While it would be preferable for hearing to be more candid, since the incentives for nominees to be vacuous is so strong there’s nothing that can be done about it. The best guide to what Sotomayor will do on the bench will be her opinions and other aspects of her record, which suggest that she’ll be a Ginsburg-like moderate liberal.