Nonlawyers On The Supreme Court?

As it turned out, President Obama has nominated Sonia Sotomayor, a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals, to fill a soon-to-be-vacant seat on the Supreme Court. But he could have picked someone with no legal experience at all.

And that leads to this question from Allen Ayers of Williamsburg, Va.:

The United States Constitution contains no prerequisites for appointment to the Supreme Court. How many U.S. Supreme Court justices have not been lawyers and what were their names?

You are certainly correct about qualifications (or lack of same) to be considered for the Supreme Court. But every single justice on the court, dating back to John Jay, has been a lawyer; each one either attended law school, took law classes, was admitted to the bar, or practiced law.



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