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Great Gender Parity for D.C. Circuit Arguments vs. SCOTUS, But Not By Much and Still Too Low

A new Fix the Court analysis has found that during the last year of arguments before the D.C. Circuit, a female attorney argued 28.3 percent of the time, which compares favorably to the previous term at the Supreme Court, where female attorneys argued only 24.5 percent of the time.

In raw numbers, of the 456 D.C. Circuit arguments, 327 of them were made by 290 different male attorneys, and 129 arguments were made by 112 different female attorneys.

These are still pathetically low numbers.

The D.C. Circuit numbers were compiled by Fix the Court intern Elise Spenner, who also crunched the Supreme Court data for the High School SCOTUS site back in June.

One somewhat bright spot, though, comes from federal government, where female advocates had a 54 percent greater chance of getting the opportunity to argue than female attorneys in private practice.

The number of private practice arguments in the circuit’s last term was 301, with women arguing 23.9% of the time, whereas the number of government arguments was 155, with women arguing 36.8% of the time.

The data compiled by Spenner can be found here.

It includes a list of every attorney who argued before the D.C. Circuit from Sept. 2022 to May 2023 and various stats gleaned from the data, including those noted above and others, such as: of the nine attorneys who argued three or more times, only one was female.

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