Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Do Liberal Law Professors Make Liberal Lawyers?

According to a new study to be published in the Georgetown Law Journal, law professors in America contribute overwhelmingly to Democrats, says a recent NY Times article. At Redstate this is being taken as just more evidence that academia is biased. However, the Times also reports:

If the liberal law professors mean to indoctrinate students, though, they have failed spectacularly in some notable cases. The United States Supreme Court's two most conservative members, Justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas, are products of Harvard and Yale, respectively. And if John G. Roberts Jr., another conservative, is confirmed this fall, another conservative graduate of Harvard Law will be added to the court.

Whatever may be said about particular schools and students, professors and deans of all political persuasions agreed that the study's general findings are undeniable...

Law professors' politics may be similar to those of other academics, but they are not representative of people with similar credentials and incomes. In the 2000 election cycle, according to data from the National Election Study produced at the University of Michigan, 34 percent of people with advanced degrees and 44 percent of those earning $95,000 to $200,000 gave exclusively to Democratic candidates. For law professors, the new study finds, it was 78 percent.

The figures suggest that liberal law professors do not always produce liberal lawyers.

In other words, lawyers as a whole are not as liberal as law professors. Most people's politics are fairly well formed before they get to law school--it's not surprising that law professors have so little influence on lawyers' ultimate political views. What's more, in an era where conservatism is on the ascendency, it's baffling that conservatives still are upset with the liberals' hold on college faculties, since this obviously has not swayed most Americans to become liberal.

Holding a liberal establishment in contempt is so central to neoconservative solidarity that they are compelled to magnify the pervasiveness of that establishment in academia and the media consistantly, until their histrionics become patently absurd.


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