David Tatel, Guido Calabresi, Harry Edwards, New York Times, Supreme Court Clerks, Weddings

Legal Eagle Wedding Watch 06.25: Animal Attraction

Legal%20Eagle%20Wedding%20Watch%20NYT%20wedding%20announcements%20Above%20the%20Law.jpgIt’s fitting that on this, the last week of the Supreme Court term, LEWW is considering a major test case. The issue: One couple has a Rhodes Scholarship, one has a SCOTUS clerkship, and one has two YLS degrees. How do we rank them?
Throw in a divorce, a famous grandparent, a couple of PhDs, a blog, three Courts of Appeals officiants, and a dash of “flava“, and we’ve got lots of credentials to chew up and spit out.
Here are the candidates:

1. Jean Galbraith and Jeremy Tobacman
2. Damara Crawley and Kevin Chambers
3. Catherine Roach and Joshua Chafetz

Read on to see which couple will emerge with the sweaty flush of victory!

1. Jean Galbraith and Jeremy Tobacman
Donate to a charity in their honor.
The Case:
– Obligatory Article III officiant: Judge David Tatel of the DC Circuit.
– Jean and Jeremy both graduated from Harvard. Jeremy hung around in Cambridge for a PhD in economics; Jean has a JD from Berkeley.
– Jean is a member of the Elect! After clerking for Judge Tatel, she was a Stevens clerk in OT ’05.
– Jeremy’s economics friends at Oxford (where he’s a postdoctoral fellow) will doubtless be impressed that he’s married into economics royalty. Jean is the granddaughter of John Kenneth Galbraith, the famous economist — a man William F. Buckley called “the most influential U.S. intellectual of the 20th century.” Of course, Galbraith probably paid him to say that; he famously believed that “Humility is not always compatible with truth.” (There’s a nugget of wisdom lawyers can get behind!) Jean’s father also lacks any excuse to be humble; he’s a partner at Williams & Connolly.
The Case Against:
– Brain drain! Instead of using her SCOTUS experience for the betterment of America’s economy like a good Scalia clerk would, Jean has decamped to the Hague to help prosecute Yugoslavian war criminals. Those Stevens clerks and their wacky fascination with international law!
2. Damara Crawley and Kevin Chambers
(Buy them a rice cooker.)
The Case:
– Obligatory Article III officiant: Senior Judge Harry T. Edwards, who sits on what the NYT cluelessly calls “the Federal Court of Appeals in Washington” (they mean the DC Circuit, not that other one).
– Unlike the other two couples, this is a lawyer-lawyer pairing. And what lawyers they are! They met at Yale Law School (Damara did her undergrad at Georgetown; Kevin was at SUNY Albany). Damara is an associate at Covington & Burling, and Kevin is clerking for Judge Edwards. Damara was also in the Navy for six years!
– Serious bonus points here for the visuals. LEWW was in law school with these two, and we can confirm the major-league attractiveness that their picture suggests. Damara is easily as beautiful in person as she appears here, and in Kevin’s case, we actually don’t think the picture does him justice.
The Case Against:
– The bride’s first marriage ended in divorce. There has been some discussion in the comments about whether previous marriages should count against LEWW candidates. We don’t believe divorces should be disqualifying, of course, but upon reflection, we can see the case for deducting a point or two (which wouldn’t have changed last week’s outcome, by the way). Overall, we try to be understanding. Law school can be very hard on a marriage (particularly Yale Law School — much safer to enter that luscious man-bazaar sans husband!).
3. Catherine Roach and Joshua Chafetz
(Buy them a garment bag.)
The Case:
– Obligatory Article III officiant: The Dark Elf himself, Judge Guido Calabresi of the Second Circuit!
– She was summa at Yale, and he was only magna — but he was the one who nabbed a Rhodes Scholarship. From Oxford he followed the well-worn path back to YLS, while Catherine pursued a doctorate in art history at Columbia.
– Josh is the founder of Oxblog, a popular wonky blog. (But he isn’t blogging anymore, and he seems to have hidden all his old posts — by order of the Dark Elf, possibly?) Says one of his former co-bloggers:

“Josh is an animal. He’s capable of spending 16 hours a day online. … Josh and David [Adesnik, another OxBlog author] will blog even when they’re on vacation. It’s like an IV or something.”

Leaving aside the question of what species of animal spends 16 hours a day online, all we can say is Catherine, honey — yank that IV out!
– The aforementioned Adesnik had this to report from the wedding:

During the ceremony, as Josh held the hands of his lovely bride Kate, it seemed as if he could barely believe that one human being is entitled to so much good fortune. The expression on Josh’s face was one of pure joy, of receiving a gift so wonderful and complete that he could ask for nothing more in this lifetime.

Good for Josh and Kate — but we’re more blown away by this Danielle Steele-worthy write-up of their momentous occasion. Good thing they didn’t allow David to file a report from the honeymoon suite!
The Case Against:
– They have three degrees from Yale, both of Catherine’s parents are professors at Yale, and they had an officiant who’s batty about Yale (if only because it produced … him). But brace yourself: The nuptials took place in the Yale Law School auditorium. Look — we have several romantic memories of the YLS building ourselves. But we’re struggling to understand why 127 Wall Street is the new Magic Kingdom of wedding destinations. Does Guido turn back into a pumpkin if you take him 100 yards away from a Yale building? In any event, we trust that Dean Koh is charging double for weddings like every other wedding facility.
The Verdict:
Ouch! This one is hurting our pretty little head. There’s no question that this is the closest LEWW in recorded history.
It all comes down to this: If Josh Chafetz had secured a SCOTUS clerkship, as most Rhodes Scholars do, Team Roach-Chafetz would take home the prize. But we can find no evidence that Josh has joined the Elect. Either he’s a very modest boy, or the chambers of the Dark Elf have suffered another embarrassing failure (bread and water for the rest of the summer, boys!).
With the only confirmed SCOTUS clerkship, Team Galbraith-Tobacman is therefore the winner. The thorny question of who takes second place is not before us, though will say that Rhodes Scholar with no picture versus double YLS with hot picture is a very, very close call. (Whoa, did we just issue dicta?) Congratulations to the winners!

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