Alito Clerks Have Arrived

By January 11, 2006Judicial Nominations

Three Alito clerks have arrived: Keith Levenberg, David Moore and Jeff Wasserstein.

Jeff Wasserstein: 97-98 : I consider myself a fairly liberal Democrat. Judge Alito does not judge with any ideological bias. Given the perceptions of Judge Alito as a conservative and my own liberal views, you would think there would be a conflict, but there wasn’t. We agreed 95% of the time. All the clerks with liberal leanings did not see the ideologue that he’s been characterized as. A former chief prosecutor made sure criminal defendants received fair hearings before the court. People have a hard time understanding that you an set aside your biases. He doesn’t make up his mind until after argument, after he’s researched it fully. I clerked for him during the Monica Lewinsky scandal. The judge never entered into the clerks’ banter, never expressed an opinion. I was identified to the judge by a colleague as “a flaming liberal.”

Said the Judge: “So what?” He thinks about individuals, thinks about individual cases. Judge Alito is the consummate judge.

David Moore: 2000-2001, currently a professor at the University of Kentucky Law School: After a year of working for him, we didn’t have a sense of what his politics were. I worked for him during Bush v. Gore, but it wasn’t something he brought to chambers or to his judging. He is very open-minded.

Keith Levenberg, 2002-2003: This is a nomination that the business community can get interested in — particularly because of his expertise. On securities, you’ll look to two Alito opinions in the Third Circuit. The Supreme Court’s been criticized that no one takes these cases, since no one on the court has the interest or expertise to handle them. There are many circuit splits., This is onerous on companies trying to comply with securities laws. This will be a major upgrade in this are for the Supreme Court. Has business law experience, expertise.

Jeff: We don’t have anyone on the court now who has been a US attorney, who is familiar with the day-to-day issues of law enforcement. He approached criminal law cases with expertise and an open mind.