Why did you choose those specific legal topics?
We can only rate a judge on a particular topic if there are enough decisions in that area to determine voting patterns. We used almost twice as many categories when examining each of the cases, but many of them had so few decisions that it was impossible to draw any conclusions about the candidate’s political or ideological preferences.
We realize that the list of legal topics that we cover does not include some popular political/legal issues such as gay marriage, abortion, or gun rights. Unfortunately, state court judges very rarely deal with these issues, and so there is no way to predict—using our methodology—how they will vote on close cases involving these issues. Of course, the fact that state court judges very rarely deal with these issues also means that they may not be the most important factors to consider when voting for a judge.