Anonymous User wrote:For a cover letter, I just wouldn't mention this at all. You're much more likely to hurt your chances than to help them by including superfluous stuff in a cover letter, and a made-up reason for wanting to work in a geographic region is superfluous and has the potential to just make you look insincere.
If you get an interview, it might come up. If you're interviewing in the judge's home chambers, you can hopefully say something positive that you've noticed about the city so far on your interview trip. You can also say something about how you're open to living someplace new and exploring a new region. For my judge, at least, he's very aware that a clerkship is a great opportunity that people are happy to get, so he's not going to be concerned about your connections to the region. As long as you'll be content living in his city for your clerkship year, regional ties really don't matter to him.
I agree with this - there are judges who do care about ties, but if they do, and you genuinely don't have any, they're not likely to interview you regardless. But lots of judges don't care, and recognize that people are often happy to spend a year somewhere new for a cool job. They'll hire you because they think you look interesting/qualified, and presume that if you applied you were willing to go there.
If there is something distinctive about the location/jurisdiction that does appeal to you, feel free to mention it (if that court is known for certain kinds of cases, for instance), but I don't think it's necessary to force it.