If Kavanaugh joins the Court, his opinions will undoubtedly be clearer and intellectually consistent. Long-term, this is no small achievement. When the Court considers overturning its own precedent, the most pressing questions are whether or not the precedent is poorly reasoned and proves unworkable.
For 12 years, Judge Kavanaugh has served on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, often considered the “second-highest court in the land” because of its heavy portion of constitutional and regulatory cases. On those issues, Kavanaugh has become the intellectual leader of his generation of judges on the lower courts. And the best evidence of this are those cases in which Judge Kavanaugh’s analysis was adopted by the Supreme Court even after Kavanaugh’s colleagues on the D.C. Circuit rejected it.