Justice Scalia admitted, however, that one of his best clerks, now 6th Circuit Judge Jeffrey Sutton, was a graduate of wait for it . . . "The" Ohio State University (Law School). Scalia noted, of course, that he would not have hired Jeff Sutton if he had applied directly. Instead, Judge Sutton "snuck" into his chambers after his Justice, Lewis Powell, resigned before he could begin his clerkship. Scalia's explanation speaks for itself:
"[I] wouldn’t have hired Jeff Sutton. For God’s sake, he went to Ohio State! And he’s one of the very best law clerks I ever had."Okay. So Justice Scalia does not think it prudent to hire clerks from "non-top" law schools, but one of his best clerks ever was a graduate of (what Justice Scalia considers to be) such a law school? Am I missing something?
I understand the rationale for hiring clerks from the top law schools in the country, but holding a strict myopic view in this regard will (inevitably, I think) cause Judges to miss out on great talent.