In remarks last week in Arizona and Colorado, Justices Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan ... talk[ed] about how a new colleague could reinforce or disrupt a court that is in some ways exceptionally homogeneous.
“We’re not as diverse as some would like in many important characteristics — educational institutions, religion, places where we come from,” Justice Sotomayor said on Thursday at a judicial conference here.Both Sotomayor and Kagan opined that "more diversity on the court would bolster public confidence in its work." Liptak quotes Justice Kagan:
People look at an institution and they see people who are like them, who share their experiences, who they imagine share their set of values, and that’s a sort of natural thing and they feel more comfortable if that occurs.
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It’s obviously true that people bring their backgrounds and experiences to the job in some sense.