The Supreme Court Will Always Split 5-4

About a third of U.S. Supreme Court decisions are always 5-4 -- no matter how ideologically divided the court is. Here's why.
It's a matter of balance.                                                                                         

Everyone knows that under Chief Justice John Roberts, the U.S. Supreme Court often divides 5-4 -- an even split between liberals and conservatives, with Justice Anthony Kennedy providing the swing vote. But here's a puzzle. Over recent decades, and under many different chief justices, the share of 5-4 splits in the Court's docket has been fairly constant -- on average, in the vicinity of 20 percent.

To continue reading this article you must be a Bloomberg Professional Service Subscriber.