The elite law firm King & Spalding has ordered one of its top attorneys, former U.S. Solicitor General Paul Clement, to suspend his work on behalf of the Defense of Marriage Act. This in response to political pressure from the gay lobby and other left-wing interest groups that would like to kill the institution of marriage and replace it with something more nebulous and ill-defined.
Clement, to his personal and professional credit, has resigned from King & Spalding so that he can continue to represent the House of Representatives in this important legal case.
But what’s notable is the blatant politicization of the legal profession that this turn of events epitomizes. Elite law firms traditionally have said that they represent unsavory clients and unpopular causes not because they necessarily like these clients or agree with these causes, but because significant legal principles and the rule of law are at stake.
In the United States everyone has a constitutional right to legal representation. In our adversary legal system, justice and the rule of law depends upon effective legal counsel in the courtroom.
That’s why, we were lectured, back during the Bush administration, top law firms were practically falling over themselves to represent terrorist suspects at Gitmo. But apparently, some causes, such as traditional marriage, are just too “extreme” and beyond the pale to warrant legal representation.
I mean, come now: The nation’s top law firms do have their limits! Such is the Orwellian world in which we now live.
Equally ironic is that King & Spalding brags about its commitment to “diversity.” But of course, by this they mean racial and gender diversity. Diversity of thought and legal representation is an altogether different and unheralded matter. Diversity there doesn’t count and, in fact, is to be shunned and denied. Orwellian indeed.