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Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.)



First Advisor

Malcolm R. Eiseler


It is a well known fact that in recent years the United States Senate has increasingly become more critical of presidential appointments to the Supreme Court branch. In this thesis the author has undertaken an intensive study of the several cases between 1916 and 1930 in which, serious opposition developed to the confirmation of Supreme Court appointments. Within this period fall the unsuccessful fights against Justices Brandeis,Taft, Butler, Stone,and Hughes,and the successful opposition to Judge Parker. In each case an effort has been made to bring out the forces and arguments operative on either side of the controversy, and to establish the fundamental motivation underlying these several manifestations of senatorial discontent.

The intensive study of this question has been limited to the period from 1916 to 1930. As a preliminary background, however chapter one has been devoted to a rapid survey of the confirmation struggles arising over Supreme Court appointments of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries and in the concluding chapter, brief reference has been made to the subsequent record of Chief Justice Hughes, to illustrate the false premise upon which some of the struggles have been founded. In the concluding lines,the author has attempted to state what he believes to be the only justifiable grounds for future attacks upon presidential nominees to the Supreme Court of the United States.





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