As long as every other interested party is weighing in on Pres. Obama's first S.Ct. nomination, the least I can do is endorse Dave Hoffman's proposal for a nominee that, at a minimum, possesses a general familiarity and comfort with empirical methods. Although I can understand it when judges choose to simply ignore salient (and, I hope, well-crafted) empirical evidence brought before them (however much it might pain me), when judges (especially Justices) choose to engage with empirical work, however, they really should avoid botching things. In Exxon, Justice Souter's recent high-profile bungling (or "debacle" as Dave notes here; subsequent scholarly work on the issue is found here) falls below what I expect from my law students. Dave's conclusion warrants repetition:
"The point is that at least some exposure in statistics and social science techniques is quickly becoming part of a well-rounded legal education. It should also be part of what we look for in a Justice."