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Courts

2008

Selected Works

Matthew W. Wolfe

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Full-Text Articles in Law

Comparing Judicial Compensation: Apples, Oranges, And Cherry-Picking, Matthew W. Wolfe, Reed Watson Mar 2008

Comparing Judicial Compensation: Apples, Oranges, And Cherry-Picking, Matthew W. Wolfe, Reed Watson

Matthew W. Wolfe

United States Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts describes the American judiciary as the envy of other constitutional democracies. But in one respect, the judiciary apparently trails others: judicial pay. Citing higher salaries of judges in other countries, Chief Justice Roberts and Associate Justices Stephen Breyer and Samuel Alito have all argued that inadequate judicial pay leads to a decline in judicial performance and quality. Judicial pay advocates apparently make these comparisons to emphasize that low judicial salaries “threaten” judicial quality and independence or, alternatively, that high judicial salaries “ensure” quality and independence. But the argument is incomplete, relying upon ...