Edith Jones and Theodore Olson: As Washington Convulses over Senate Approval of Judicial Nominations, We Talk Law and Judges with Two of America's Top Legal Figures: Former Solicitor General Theodore Olson, and Federal Judge Edith Jones

The American Enterprise, June 2005 | Go to article overview

Edith Jones and Theodore Olson: As Washington Convulses over Senate Approval of Judicial Nominations, We Talk Law and Judges with Two of America's Top Legal Figures: Former Solicitor General Theodore Olson, and Federal Judge Edith Jones


Ted Olson is one Of America's pre-eminent lawyers, having argued more than 40 cases before the Supreme Court. As U.S. solicitor general from 2001 to 2004, he represented the nation in arguments deciding affirmative action policies, U.S. campaign finance laws, the legal treatment of terrorists, and other hot-button topics. Before that, Olson successfully represented George W. Bush in Bush v. Gore, the climactic Supreme Court decision on Election 2000. On September 11, 2001, Olson's life was touched by tragedy: his wife Barbara, an attorney and bestselling author, perished in the plane crashed against the Pentagon by terrorists. In 2004, Olson government service for private practice.

Edith Jones (whose remarks begin on page 16) was appointed by President Reagan to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, and has since earned consideration as a possible appointee to the Supreme Court. Judge Jones was a bankruptcy lawyer and an authority on business law, but has perhaps received more attention for her bold opinions on social issues and criminal law. Size argues that morality and legal restraint are essential to a well-functioning court system. Edith Jones and Theodore Olson were interviewed by TAE contributor and attorney Susanna Dokupil--Olson in Washington, D.C., and Jones in Houston, Texas.

TED OLSON

TAE: Tell us about how you grew up.

OLSON: My family moved to California--the Bay area--when I was seven or eight years old. My father was with United Airlines. I went to public schools in California and eventually law school in Berkeley.

TAE: How did you choose Berkeley?

OLSON: I was the oldest of five kids and my family was not in a position to spend a lot of money to send me to law school. Berkeley was very inexpensive. And it was a good school, close to home. That was a great time to be a Republican in Berkeley, amidst Barry Goldwater's campaign! Those were years upheaval and revolt, and Berkeley was a very radical place. I think there were fewer than ten of us in the Republican group at the law school.

TAE: Was your family politically active?

OLSON: No. My mother was primarily a housewife until my brother and sisters were grown up. Then she went to college; she was never active in politics. My father was an engineer and he wasn't involved in politics either. But they were both what you would call conservatives today. My father's family owned a little general store in northern Wisconsin and my mother grew up on a dairy farm there, and they were hard-working salt-of-the-earth people.

TAE: What brought you to Washington?

OLSON: After I graduated I practiced law in Los Angeles for 16 years in a firm where I got to know William French Smith, who was part of Ronald Reagan's "kitchen cabinet." He helped talk Reagan into running for office after hearing his speeches in support of Barry Goldwater. I wound up representing Ronald Reagan in his personal life" and political work. When William French Smith was appointed as Reagan's attorney general he brought me into the Justice Department.

TAE: Do you have some favorite memories of Ronald Reagan?

OLSON: Lots. You could not work with him without developing great affection and admiration for the man. He was probably the most easy-to-get-along-with client I've ever had. He was very gracious in his dealings with people. He had a way of making people feel at ease. After he left office I became his private lawyer.

TAE: How would you compare Reagan with George W. Bush, whom you've had the chance to work closely with over the last few years?

OLSON: They both have broad ideas about the role of the President in solving great issues. Both avoided getting too deeply involved in specificity. President Clinton was a very detail-oriented person who would start talking about an issue, and it would go on and on and on, because he knew so much. President Bush and Ronald Reagan focused on the basics of the message. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Edith Jones and Theodore Olson: As Washington Convulses over Senate Approval of Judicial Nominations, We Talk Law and Judges with Two of America's Top Legal Figures: Former Solicitor General Theodore Olson, and Federal Judge Edith Jones
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.