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Even Former Attorneys General Can't Find Jobs in This Economy

It's been over a year since Alberto Gonzales' September 2007 resignation as Attorney General, yet like many of his fellow lawyers, he remains unemployed. According to an interview with the Austin American-Statesman, Gonzales is blaming the economy for his inability to find gainful employment:

"It's a rough economy right now, and it's a tough time for a lot of law firms right now. Obviously they are very careful about bringing on new people, and they are going to be careful about bringing on people where there are questions about things that may have happened in their past," he said. "Over time, I'm confident those things will be resolved, and things will work themselves out."

To paraphrase James Carville, this time, it's not the economy, stupid. Instead, Gonzales is simply getting a first-hand taste of his own employment policies. Recall that under Gonzales' watch at Justice, his underlings unlawfully politicized the DOJ hiring process, rejecting eminently qualified candidates because of their perceived political leanings. Likewise, many firms may be unwilling to touch Gonzales, not just because of questions about his past, but also because of his political views. After all, many of the nation's top firms, where Gonzales presumably hoped for employment, are also representing Guantanamo detainees in habeas proceedings. Given Gonzales' approach to detainees while at DOJ, it's not surprising that these firms wouldn't feel comfortable working with him.

Of course, there's one major difference between law firms' rejection of Gonzales for his political positions and the DOJ's rejection of otherwise qualified, but politically incompatible job applicants: Law firms can do it lawfully, the DOJ can't.

Posted by Carolyn Elefant on January 9, 2009 at 02:22 PM | Permalink | Comments (1)


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