U.S. Supreme Court

22 former Thomas clerks have landed Trump administration jobs or judicial nominations

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Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.

Justice Clarence Thomas’ former law clerks have a big influence because of hiring and judicial nominations by the Trump administration.

Twenty-two former of Thomas’ former clerks were nominated for judgeships by President Donald Trump or hold appointments in the administration, the Associated Press reports.

Thomas tends to hire clerks with his same views. The story points to a comment Thomas made nearly 20 years ago. “I’m not going to hire clerks who have profound disagreements with me,” he said. “Someone said that it’s like trying to train a pig. It wastes your time, and it aggravates the pig.”

One of the former clerks is Neomi Rao, administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs. The founder of the Center for the Study of the Administrative State at the Antonin Scalia Law School at George Mason University, Rao has overseen plans to eliminate hundreds of regulations.

Former Thomas clerks who were nominated by Trump and confirmed to federal judgeships include Judge Gregory Katsas of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit; Judge Allison Eid of the Denver-based 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals; Judge David Stras of the St. Louis-based 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals; and Judge James Ho of the New Orleans-based 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Former clerks for Justices Samuel A. Alito Jr. and the late Justice Scalia have also done well as a result of Trump’s presidency. About a dozen clerks for each of the justices have landed jobs or judicial nominations in the Trump administration, according to the AP story.

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