How Political Ideology Undermines Racial and Gender Diversity in Federal Judicial Selection: The Prospects for Judicial Diversity in the Trump Years

Kevin Johnson
Published in
Wisconsin Law Review    

Johnson's essay considers the relationship between efforts to increase the racial and gender diversity of the federal judiciary and the contemporary contentiousness of the Senate judicial confirmation process. Part I briefly evaluates the benefits of a diverse federal judiciary and summarizes the relatively successful efforts of President Obama—the nation’s first African- American president—to increase racial and gender diversity among the nation’s federal judges. Part II analyzes the diversity costs of an ideologically-driven confirmation process in the United States Senate. Part III suggests that President Trump’s suspicions that racial minorities are naturally biased do not bode well in terms of his commitment to diversity.