In December Vanity Fair writer Nell Scovell asked Anita Hill, currently a law professor at Brandeis University, whether she had considered the notion of being appointed to the Supreme Court.
Hill, much to my surprise, responded to the question:
Dear Ms. Scovell:
My mother would have warned me against answering your e-mail and participating in the kind of "devilment" you are up to. Last month I was speaking in Maine and was asked about being appointed to the Court. I responded, "That would be awkward, don't you think?" After all, there ought to be some level of civility, if not camaraderie, among The Nine. I'm very excited about Barack Obama's presidency and its potential for healing, but I don't think this is one that he can, or should try to, pull off.
Not that you asked, but high on my list of people Obama ought to consider for the Supreme Court are Dean Harold Koh of Yale Law School (international law specialist) and Lani Guinier at Harvard. (She never had her chance to prove herself before the Judiciary Committee.) I'd also like for him to go outside the Northeast corridor and Ivy League Schools for someone who has been on a state supreme court deciding significant social/economic issues.
I don't think that President Obama would consider appointing Hill -- Robert Bork has a better shot -- but it's an amusing line of thought. If anyone deserves to endure an uncomfortable workplace ...