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What happened to 2004 SCOTUS clerks? Law prof checks them out

Posted Jun 12, 2014 5:45 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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U.S. Supreme Court law clerks are considered the best and the brightest. Where do their careers take them?

Pepperdine law professor Derek Muller checked out the public records to find out. In a post at Excess of Democracy, he took a look at publicly available material to check out the careers of law clerks from the 2004 October term. Above the Law noted his findings.

Nineteen clerks served for conservative justices (he included Justices Sandra Day O’Connor and Anthony M. Kennedy in the conservative group) and 16 served for liberal justices. He found:

• Eighteen former clerks are still in private practice, 11 worked for conservative justices and seven for liberal justices.

• Only three former clerks are in academia; two of them worked for liberal Justice Stephen G. Breyer

• Fourteen former clerks are in government or public interest jobs. Half worked for conservatives and half for liberals.

Which law firms had the most of the 2004 clerks on board? Bartlit Beck; Munger Tolles & Olson; and WilmerHale had two clerks apiece.

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