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12 October 2006


William Henderson


As someone who has observed the workings of the Federalist Society at Chicago (and noting also that some of my former classmates have, in fact, obtained key executive and judicial branch positions), I think your explanation holds together very well. The comparison to the New Deal era is particularly apt.

However, it would be great to explore the vision and ambitions of some of the Federalist Society founders and chapter leaders. To me, it is interesting to observe that ideas may, in fact, matter a great deal. And this epistemic community--the Federalist Society--has buttressed the conservative movement.

One last note: It is possible that the Federalists are disproportionately represented at elite law schools--but why? I cannot help but believe that Harriet Miers was done in, in part, by her SMU credentials--I suspect the vast majority of active and prominent Federalists, particularly in Washington, attended elite law schools. Hence, why was Bush picking such a lightweight? But I could be wrong.

Some empirical work would fill out this picture. Thanks for a interesting set of posts, bh.

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