Judicial Pay

There’s a movement to increase the pay of federal judges, currently being lead by Justice Roberts.  I agree that we probably should be paying federal justices competitively.  Here’s why:

The cost of not [addressing the pay disparity] will be a decrease in the quality of an increasingly important judiciary — and a change in its perspective. Fifty years ago, about 65 percent of the federal judiciary came from the private sector — from the practicing bar — and 35 percent from the public sector. Today 60 percent come from government jobs, less than 40 percent from private practice. This tends to produce a judiciary that is not only more important than ever but also is more of an extension of the bureaucracy than a check on it.

Absent competitive pay, the only reason someone has to take a federal judgeship is to power and prestige associated with the position, or a lack of ability in the private sector.  That’s probably the type of person we don’t want sitting on the bench.

2 thoughts on “Judicial Pay”

  1. heaven forbid we should look for competent attorneys and that they should take up the job in public service, and actually serve the public. federal judges are appointed for life, but does that mean they have to serve for life. if they can resign for health reasons or family reasons, why can’t they resign if they feel the need to return to private practice in order fill their retirement fund.

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