That might be as a chief justice, associate justice, clerk or advocate before the high court.
Many recall in "Zero to One," how venture capitalist Peter Thiel recounted the blow it was not to be offered a clerkship by the two justices he interviewed with. One had been Antonin Scalia.
Robert Bork's legacy is not being admitted to the court.
Law firm Jones Day pays up to a $300,000 sign-on bonus for former SCOTUS clerks.
But there have also been some who didn't assess serving on the court as an associate justice the pinnacle of a career.
On Abovethelaw, lawyer-journalist Joe Patrice reports that Charles Evans Hughes left the job to take a shot at defeating the current U.S. president Woodrow Wilson in his re-election campaign. Here is that coverage.
As many recall, that didn't work out so hot. Wilson a won by a narrow margin. But politics is binary. There are wins and losses. Hughes, a former governor of New York, lost.
But all was not lost. Years later Hughes was appointed to be the chief justice on the high court. Perhaps the universe thought it owed him one.
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