A.D.A. or Private Law Firm

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A.D.A. or Private Law Firm

Postby ggilbert2008 » Mon May 24, 2010 10:35 pm

My primary goal in my life is to get into politics and become an elected official in my homestate of New York, specifically NYC. That's a long way off now since I'm in my senior year of my undergrad. Which path would lead to a better path to becoming a D.A. or getting into politics. Public Service as an A.D.A. or going into the private service for a few years, building connections, and then running for office.

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Re: A.D.A. or Private Law Firm

Postby blackacre » Mon May 24, 2010 10:51 pm

if you want to get into politics you better keep your nose clean and limit your baggage, as seen with barack. So, I think laying low in a private firm wouldn't hurt but as a DA, you would get your name out there.

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Re: A.D.A. or Private Law Firm

Postby colemf » Mon May 24, 2010 10:54 pm

It depends on what law school your going to and where you end up placing in your class, if your going T20-25 and you do well it might be better do go to a major firm and build connections with those that have what makes politics run($$$$$). On the other hand if your not going to a major law school or you don't do well, an ADA position would likely be the better, although longer, road to take.

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Re: A.D.A. or Private Law Firm

Postby yabbadabbado » Tue May 25, 2010 1:53 pm

Getting elected depends a lot on having money (think millions) and connections (i.e. you come from a prominent business or political family). If you have neither, none of the other stuff is going to matter for several years anyway. You'd essentially be looking at an extreme longshot 20+ years from now if you are lucky.

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Re: A.D.A. or Private Law Firm

Postby LawMuns » Tue May 25, 2010 2:09 pm

This answer is meant to be purely strategic. You are going to need connections from both to get anywhere. Assuming you can get either job with relative ease and the compensation isn't a factor (two large assumptions), I would say start as an ADA. Build a good reputation. Get to know the local powers that be. Figure out who can and will help, and who can't or won't. After a few years, I would go into private practice. You will meet a lot more people in private practice that can help you financially. Figure out who else is out there to challenge you. Position yourself so that you have plenty of local support--both for endorsement and contributions. I agree with a previous reply, that patience is the key. 20 years seems somewhat arbitrary, but the general point that you need to have some accomplishments to talk about is valild.

I worked in politics, and I admire people who don't mind throwing themselves in the fire. Our system needs those people. Think about why you want to run. Do you want to do something or be somebody? It is an important distinction.

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