Anonymous User wrote:A few questions/random interjections:
1. Outside of the "feeder courts," just how difficult is it to get a D.Ct. gig in a major city in a major state? Examples off the top of my head would be L.A., Chicago, Phoenix, Houston, Dallas, Atlanta, and Miami.
2. Does it make any difference whatsoever if one of the above cities happens to house multiple top-ranked law schools? (Chicago and L.A. being the obvious examples)
3. To what extent should one expect to be quizzed about their personal political views? (I'm asking only b/c the death penalty is apparently a "thing")
4. FWIW, I know for a fact that there are *some* federal judges (D.Ct. and magistrate, at least) who haven't even hired anyone for 2014-2015 yet, let alone 2015-2016 (or 2016-2017 - ye gods!). My gf is clerking for a federal magistrate judge. She didn't even start sending in resumes until getting no-offered after her 2L summer (she had two BigLaw SA gigs that were disastrous, for various reasons). This judge is presently interviewing 3Ls to replace her in August.
1. It's difficult to generalize, but it's not super easy.
2. Yes. But even "flyover" (I don't like that term at all since it seems a bit perjorative but it's easy shorthand) clerkship still get dozens if not hundreds of applications from qualified and competitive candidates for each spot.
3. You likely aren't going to get quizzed directly. But it was pretty common to get questions along the lines of "Best SCOTUS decision," "Best SCOTUS decision in the past decade," "Word SCOTUS decision," "Worst SCOTUS decision in the past decade," "Favorite SCOTUS Justice" (Don't think anyone asked me least favorite, as that might be too disrespectful, though I did get asked my thoughts on particular judges who were well-known for their political leanings), "Best/Worst constitutional doctrine," etc. These are very common, I think the vast majority of my interviews had something along these lines. So you could make it into a question about politics very easy. Note that I interviewed mainly with CoA judges so i'm not certain this is representative.
4. Yes, I agree, though they are in the minority. My school's OCS has a blog which lists openings every now and then for judges who still have 2014-15 spots available.