For decades, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has been widely regarded as an extremely liberal federal appellate court. But just how accurate is the label?

In a new study in the William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal, University of Pittsburgh law professor Arthur Hellman looked at en banc polling in the Ninth Circuit to get a better idea of whether the court lives up to its reputation. His finding: the court is predominantly liberal, but in some areas of the law more than others—plus, prominent conservative dissents have also helped typecast the circuit.