Report Says Harvard Law Is Asking Its Students To Apply For Clerkships With Trump’s Judges, But There Don’t Seem To Be Any Takers

Some of them have standards, after all.

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I guess you can’t really hire “the best people” if the best people don’t want the job, right?

That’s what judges appointed by Donald Trump across the nation are finding out after having been part of the sudden, drastic push by Republicans to swing the country’s judiciary hard to the right by stacking courts with Heritage Foundation, American Enterprise Institute, and Federalist Society picks to line the benches.

The massive undertaking by Mitch McConnell, the Senate Majority Leader who famously made it his mission to deny Barack Obama a Supreme Court nomination before he left office, has produced one nominee after another rated “not qualified” by the American Bar Association for any number of reasons up to and including some who have never tried any case, ever.


One thing, however, that these judges eager to be part of the new face of conservative activism in America’s justice system may not have considered is that people won’t want to work with them. And it’s an understatement to say that federal judges do not work alone. To use a sports analogy, a judge is almost just a quarterback — without a line protecting them they’d get clobbered by the defense.

Harvard has apparently heard from some of these judges who are desperately seeking clerks, and issued a statement — almost a job opening posting — for its law students who normally would be clamoring for a clerk position with almost any federal judge. But not these judges.

If you recognize some of those names, that’s because those ones were bad enough candidates to warrant national attention as they underwent the confirmation process. Sarah Pitlyk, for example, now seated in the Eastern District of Missouri, calls abortion “racist” and opposes in vitro fertilization on the grounds that it cheapens “real” motherhood, a position that actually makes me physically ill. That Appeals judge in Reno, Lawrence VanDyke? People who have worked with him in the past have called him a “lazy, arrogant ideologue” who lacks the ability to even try cases impartially.

Students at Harvard still aren’t champing at the bit, however.

It might surprise the Board at Harvard to find out that the nation’s next generation of lawyers and law clerks have no interest in selling their souls to climb the judicial ladder more quickly.

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