In the latest issue of the Green Bag, David Garrow has a very interesting discussion of the ideological leanings of feeder judges and the impact they may have on the internal workings of the Supreme Court. (Feeder judges, for those unfamiliar with the term, are lower court judges whose clerks often go on to clerk for the Supreme Court.) Garrow notes that many feeder judges are considerably more ideological -- that is, less politically centrist -- than is typical for appellate judges. Garrow writes:
[I]n recent decades virtually every [feeder judge] has been either exceptionally liberal or highly conservative and almost none have been politically difficult to pigeonhole.