Let's kill all the law clerks

+ More

Stuart Taylor of National Journal and Benjamin Wittes of the Washington Post have an interesting article in the forthcoming Atlantic arguing that Supreme Court justices should be deprived of their law clerks. Taylor and Wittes are not cranks; far from it. Taylor is a very widely respected legal commentator, and Wittes has written thoughtfully on legal issues in the Post's editorial and opinion pages. They note that the court's caseload is far lower than it was before the 1980s and that justices have far more clerks—four each—than they used to have. Clerks are typically recent law school graduates who have made very high grades but who, at age 25 or so, have very limited experience. I have made a similar argument myself.