We’re with three more of Judge Alito’s former law clerks: Jeffrey Wasserstein (1997-98), Keith Levenberg (2002-03) and David Moore (2000-01). Wasserstein is a DC attorney in private practice and describes himself as a liberal Democrat. He stands up for Judge Alito as an incredibly fair-minded man. He believes that the judge sets aside his biases and reserves judgment until he has fully studied and reflected on a given case, after oral argument.
As a Democrat, he observed no ideological predisposition or ideology at work in the resolution of the cases. He is one of several liberal Democrats who clerked for Judge Alito and who supports his confirmation; every one of the judge’s former clerks who has been able to state his or her opinion supports Judge Alito’s confirmation. He thinks the judge’s prosecutorial experience will add a valuable persepctive to the Supreme Court. Wasserstein clerked for the judge during the Monica Lewinsky era of the Clinton administration. Although the clerks argued about related issues, the judge never discussed it. The judge does not think in terms of groups; he thinks about individuals and individual cases. He thinks that Judge Alito is apolitical — “the consummate judge.” Judge Alito is the “straightest of the straight arrows.” Attacking Judge Alito’s integrity is “appalling.” He points to the judge’s former minority and female law clerks as rebutting the Democratic defamation of Judge Alito.
David Moore teaches international law and human rights at the University of Kentucky Law School. Like the other clerks, Moore was unaware of the judge’s politics. He doesn’t bring politics to his chambers or his judging. Professor Moore notes that the judge has forthrightly answered almost all questions and deferred answering very few; he observes that the senators are playing to their constitituencies. He states that in his personal behavior Judge Alito is committed to honesty, humility, and kindness. Professor Moore admires Judge Alito as a man.
Keith Levenburg is an attorney in private practice in New York. He believes that Judge Alito has interest and expertise in securities law; this nomination presents a major upgrade in business law on the Supreme Court. He notes that the judge has also taught a class in legal issues related to the war on terrorism; he thinks that this too adds valuable expertise. He compares Judge Alito’s demeanor and respect for judicial office to President Reagan’s refusal to take off his suitcoat in the Oval Office. Judge Alito checks his politics at the door. He is most disappointed by the “smear tactics” related to the judge’s former membership in the Concerned Alumni of Princeton; “it’s easier to tell a big lie than a small lie.”
Do you notice a pattern here?
UPDATE: At Reasoned Audacity Charmaine Yoest has a photo and additional commentary in this post.
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