Americas

The Post-Protestant Supreme Court

Christians weigh in on whether it matters that the high court will likely lack Protestant representation.

Justice John Paul Stevens, described in media reports as the last remaining Protestant on the Supreme Court, announced Friday that he would retire.

In 2006, the court began to have a Catholic majority. Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, and Samuel Alito tend to fall on the conservative side of the court compared to fellow Catholic Justices Sonya Sotomayor and Anthony Kennedy. Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Stephen Breyer are Jewish.

"If religion is a factor, it's not going to be in the top five by any means," said Carl Esbeck, a law professor at the University of Missouri. "That said, one's religious faith or absence thereof says a lot about your worldview, which affects your work. You want a variety of worldviews on the court."

Non-evangelicals have done much of the heavy hitting for evangelicals in the law, said Notre Dame history professor Mark Noll. "Witness intense evangelical support for the George W. Bush Catholic nominees to the Supreme Court," ...

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