Trump considers Kellyanne Conway's husband for top legal job

© REX/Shutterstock. Trump campaign manager Kellyanne Conway is seen in the lobby of Trump Tower on Dec. 16.
Trump Said to Weigh Aide Conway’s Husband for Top Legal Job

(Bloomberg) -- President-elect Donald Trump is considering George Conway, a long-time corporate lawyer and the husband of senior adviser Kellyanne Conway, to be U.S. solicitor general, the government’s top appellate lawyer, according to two people familiar with the matter.

Conway, who’s spent more than two decades as a partner at New York corporate legal powerhouse Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz, has made a career representing high-profile clients from the National Football League to tobacco maker Philip Morris, according to his biography on the firm’s website. He wasn’t directly involved in Trump’s presidential campaign, which was managed by his wife.

George Conway didn’t immediately respond to a telephone and e-mail message seeking comment.

Conway is a 1987 graduate of Yale Law School, where he was editor of the Yale Law Journal. According to his biography he was a law clerk to federal appeals court Judge Ralph K. Winter Jr.

He had a minor role in the 1998 impeachment of President Bill Clinton, the husband of Trump’s election opponent, Hillary Clinton. According to an October profile of Kellyanne Conway in the New Yorker, George Conway wrote a Supreme Court brief in the case involving Paula Jones’s sexual harassment suit against Clinton. That opened the path to Clinton’s impeachment on charges of perjury and obstruction of justice. He was acquitted by the Senate.

The solicitor general reports to the attorney general and the post is subject to Senate confirmation.

Conway would represent an unusual choice for solicitor general. His law firm biography lists only one Supreme Court case he has argued -- a 2010 dispute involving the overseas reach of federal securities law. People who have held the post previously have generally had extensive Supreme Court experience, or, like former Harvard Law School Dean Elena Kagan, served in a prominent academic position.

Conway’s appointment also would raise questions about the level of White House involvement with the solicitor general’s office given his wife’s position in a Trump administration. Although solicitors general ultimately answer to the president, they traditionally make most of their decisions independently of the White House.


Trump Said to Weigh Aide Conway’s Husband for Top Legal Job

President-elect Donald Trump is considering George Conway, a long-time corporate lawyer and the husband of senior adviser Kellyanne Conway, to be U.S. solicitor general, the government’s top appellate lawyer, according to two people familiar with the matter.

Conway, who’s spent more than two decades as a partner at New York corporate legal powerhouse Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz, has made a career representing high-profile clients from the National Football League to tobacco maker Philip Morris, according to his biography on the firm’s website. He wasn’t directly involved in Trump’s presidential campaign, which was managed by his wife.

George Conway didn’t immediately respond to a telephone and e-mail message seeking comment.

Conway is a 1987 graduate of Yale Law School, where he was editor of the Yale Law Journal. According to his biography he was a law clerk to federal appeals court Judge Ralph K. Winter Jr.

He had a minor role in the 1998 impeachment of President Bill Clinton, the husband of Trump’s election opponent, Hillary Clinton. According to an October profile of Kellyanne Conway in the New Yorker, George Conway wrote a Supreme Court brief in the case involving Paula Jones’s sexual harassment suit against Clinton. That opened the path to Clinton’s impeachment on charges of perjury and obstruction of justice. He was acquitted by the Senate.
The solicitor general reports to the attorney general and the post is subject to Senate confirmation.

Conway would represent an unusual choice for solicitor general. His law firm biography lists only one Supreme Court case he has argued -- a 2010 dispute involving the overseas reach of federal securities law. People who have held the post previously have generally had extensive Supreme Court experience, or, like former Harvard Law School Dean Elena Kagan, served in a prominent academic position.

Conway’s appointment also would raise questions about the level of White House involvement with the solicitor general’s office given his wife’s position in a Trump administration. Although solicitors general ultimately answer to the president, they traditionally make most of their decisions independently of the White House.


Kellyanne Conway’s Husband Could Become Donald Trump’s Top Supreme Court Lawyer

George Conway, the husband of Donald Trump’s top adviser Kellyanne Conway, is reportedly being considered for the post of U.S. solicitor general, the federal government’s lead lawyer before the Supreme Court.

CNN also reported that George Conway would accept the job if selected for the post, and that Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), the president-elect’s choice for attorney general, has interviewed him. The news of Conway’s possible nomination was first reported by Bloomberg.

If nominated and confirmed, Conway would defend the Trump administration’s positions before the nation’s high court and also decide what to do with top litigation priorities for the Obama administration in lower courts ― including pending disputes over the Affordable Care Act, transgender rights and immigration.

Conway is a partner at a top New York law firm, where he has worked for nearly 30 years and has garnered extensive litigation and appellate experience. After graduating from Yale Law School, he clerked for a federal appeals judge in Manhattan.

He has argued once before the Supreme Court, in a 2010 securities case, but his most high-profile work before the justices may be his involvement in the Paula Jones case against then-President Bill Clinton.

According to a profile of his wife in The New Yorker, Conway played a lead role writing the legal brief urging the Supreme Court to rule, in a landmark 1997 decision, that the president can be sued in his personal capacity for actions he took before taking office. But a 1999 article in The New York Times revealed that Conway’s ties to the case ― and ill feelings toward Clinton ― ran much deeper.

As legal twists would have it, one early test for Conway as solicitor general might be to push back against any and all challenges to Trump’s potential business conflicts while in office. Legal and ethics experts have argued that the president-elect’s vast business holdings raise conflicts of interest that could run afoul of the Constitution, which in turn could lead to court challenges.

Conway is listed as an expert on the website of The Federalist Society, the conservative legal group that handpicked some of the names on Trump’s Supreme Court shortlist. He once co-authored a paper for the collective supporting felon disenfranchisement laws.

Under federal law, the only requirement for a solicitor general is to be “learned in the law.” The official reports to the attorney general and is ultimately answerable to the president, but in much of his or her work the solicitor general, who also has an office in the Supreme Court building, is expected to exercise independence in legal judgment.

Donald Verrilli, President Barack Obama’s long-serving solicitor general, told The Huffington Post in September he viewed his role as standing up for the country’s interests in the courts.

“When I was in the government, I tried to represent my client, which was the United States, to the very best of my ability, every day,” Verrilli said. He stepped down in June, following a five-year tenure that included his successful defense ― twice ― of Obama’s health care law.

A number of notable solicitors general in history went on to become Supreme Court justices, including Elena Kagan and the late Robert Jackson and Thurgood Marshall. The latter once called the gig “the best job I’ve ever had.”

0 Response to "Trump considers Kellyanne Conway's husband for top legal job"