Welcome, dear readers, to the First Monday ... of the Post-Souter World. What's that, you say? Do I hear the Groupie contingent gently reminding Clerquette that Justice Souter is, for the time being, still a member of The Supremes?
Clerquette thanks you for your commitment to accuracy, and assures you: she is well aware that Justice Souter remains ensconced in his dimly lit chambers at One First Street. But (Clerquette noticed over the weekend) in addition to the sudden crop of bettors on the Souter replacement (present company proudly included!), a crowd has gathered to essentially eulogize Justice Souter, and to praise or criticize his contribution to the Court.
Of course, Clerquette was pleased to read the many, thoughtful analyses of Justice Souter's jurisprudential legacy, which was not unlike a short, mental journey back to Con Law class. But Clerquette was downright delighted by some of the more personal tidbits about the Justice -- the Souter trivia, rendered, in some cases, by those who know him best. Clerquette is referring, of course, to the Souter branch of The Elect.
Past clerks are, of course, generally respectful of their Supreme benefactors' privacy (does that sound too "Axis of Evil"? Clerquette means "the Justice for whom they clerked") and not inclined to dish dirt. Propriety does not, however, militate against the disclosure of endearing, quirky details about the Supremes, which are like chicken soup for the Article III groupie's soul.
A particularly fine piece, which included both a summary of Justice Souter's professional accomplishments and a delicious helping of Souter trivia, is Kermit Roosevelt's comparison, in Slate, of Justice Souter to Cinncinatus. And another former clerk, Heather Gerken, offered more general praise for a man she calls a "judge's judge," and a "courtly lawyer" in the NYT. Although many Court-watchers have long been aware of the Justice's aversion to technology (and resultant practice of writing opinions in longhand), we have been treated some other delectable pieces of Souter trivia, old and new. See, e.g.,
- The ever-thrifty Justice Souter was, at times, known to read by natural (though sub-optimal) light, rather than wasting electricity;
- Justice Souter brought his lunch, consisting of a yogurt and apple, every day; and
- was known to reheat yesterday's coffee in the microwave. (Aha! One technological innovation that the Justice did partake of!)
Clerquette loves the personal quirks and delicious details of the Article III personality ... and The Supremes in particular! That is a not-so-subtle hint, dear readers, for a bit more fodder to feed this groupie's soul.
In the meantime, Clerquette's eye remains on the SCOTUS Leaderboard ...