Musical Chairs: John Bolton to Kirkland & Ellis

John Bolton Surrender Is Not An Option Above the Law blog.jpgHere’s news of an interesting, high-profile move. Our source offers this preface:

“[A] number of the younger lawyers at K&E tend to be moderate to liberal and have donated a great deal to Obama. Yet K&E seems to be a popular destination for right-wingers nonetheless.”

(Well, that depends on the office. There are lots of moderate to liberal young lawyers in K&E’s New York and Chicago offices. But in the more politically charged Washington office, conservatives dominate the junior ranks as well.)
Oh yes, the move. As reported by James Oliphant — former editor in chief of the Legal Times, who not too long ago went back to reporting, for the Chicago Tribune — in the Tribune’s D.C. blog, The Swamp:

John Bolton, the outspoken former Bush administration official and UN ambassador, is joining Chicago-based Kirkland & Ellis as a senior adviser.

Bolton worked as a senior arms-control policymaker in the State Department and became known for his hawk-like views toward Iraq, Iran and North Korea and a belligerant personal style. His nomination as United Nations ambassador in 2005 became a highly charged affair, largely because Bolton had expressed tremendous antipathy toward the U.N.

He was once quoted as saying that “The Secretariat building in New York has 38 stories. If you lost ten stories today, it wouldn’t make a bit of difference.” Ultimately, he was never confirmed as U.N. ambassador but made a recess appointment by President Bush and again drew criticism for an abrasive manner while in New York.

Interestingly enough, John Bolton was friends during law school with Clarence Thomas, who would also become a target of the left in the years to come. At last year’s book party for Justice Thomas’s memoir, My Grandfather’s Son, Bolton and Thomas were overheard commiserating over how doing audio versions of their books made them hoarse.
John Bolton joins Chicago-based firm [The Swamp / Chicago Tribune]

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