The Court's recent ACA decision propelled attention to perceptions of Court legitimacy. Erik Girvan (Oregon) pointed me to a post by a pair of political scientists at Duke, Chris Johnston and D. Sunshine Hillygus, who consider "Given that the Court ruled in favor of the constitutionality of the ACA bill, we were interested to see how Court legitimacy would vary across Democrats and Republicans. Would Democrats show higher levels of legitimacy because of the ruling? Conversely, would Republicans show higher legitimacy in spite of the ruling, because the Court remains relatively conservative overall?"
According to Johnston and Hillygus, "the present data support the conclusion that Supreme Court legitimacy is, to a meaningful extent, conditional on political predispositions as they relate to the output of the Court; however, what matters is how citizens perceive the Court’s output, and whether those perceptions are in line with their own preferences or not."