Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=2478908
 


 



An Empirical Study of Political Bias in Legal Scholarship


Adam S. Chilton


University of Chicago - Law School

Eric A. Posner


University of Chicago - Law School

August 11, 2014

University of Chicago Coase-Sandor Institute for Law & Economics Research Paper No. 696

Abstract:     
Law professors routinely accuse each other of making politically biased arguments in their scholarship. They have also helped produce a large empirical literature on judicial behavior that has found that judicial opinions sometimes reflect the ideological biases of the judges who join them. Yet no one has used statistical methods to test the parallel hypothesis that legal scholarship reflects the political biases of law professors. This paper provides the results of such a test. We find that, at a statistically significant level, law professors at elite law schools who make donations to Democratic political candidates write liberal scholarship, and law professors who make donations to Republican political candidates write conservative scholarship. These findings raise questions about standards of objectivity in legal scholarship.

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Date posted: August 12, 2014  

Suggested Citation

Chilton, Adam S. and Posner, Eric A., An Empirical Study of Political Bias in Legal Scholarship (August 11, 2014). University of Chicago Coase-Sandor Institute for Law & Economics Research Paper No. 696. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2478908

Contact Information

Adam S. Chilton (Contact Author)
University of Chicago - Law School ( email )
1111 E. 60th St.
Chicago, IL 60637
United States
Eric A. Posner
University of Chicago - Law School ( email )
1111 E. 60th St.
Chicago, IL 60637
United States
773-702-0425 (Phone)
773-702-0730 (Fax)
HOME PAGE: http://www.law.uchicago.edu/faculty/posner-e/
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