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Report: Yale Students Told Kavanaugh Favored a 'Look'

Yale professor Amy Chua said to give 'off-putting' advice to would-be clerks
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 21, 2018 6:25 AM CDT
Updated Sep 21, 2018 6:45 AM CDT
In this Thursday, Sept. 6, 2018 file photo made with a slow shutter speed and a zoom lens, President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee...   (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

(Newser) "Tiger Mom" Amy Chua is in the news again, though not because of her parenting. Rather, she's become ensnared in the latest coverage of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh and his interaction with women. The Guardian reports that Chua, a Yale professor, "played an outsized role in vetting" the clerks who worked for Kavanaugh, as many of them came from Yale, Kavanaugh's alma mater. The unnamed sources the paper spoke with described receiving advice from Chua and her husband, Jed Rubenfeld, also of Yale, about the "look" Kavanaugh favored. There are no allegations of improper behavior between Kavanaugh and his clerks, but some found Chua and Rubenfeld's "counsel off-putting," per the HuffPost's source, who says the advice she received was "phrased as a warning."

The Guardian reports the couple's tendency to raise the issue of looks didn't extend to other judges. One student who was advised by the couple says, "I have no reason to believe [Kavanaugh] was saying, 'Send me the pretty ones,' but rather that he was reporting back and saying, 'I really like so and so,' and the way he described them led them to form certain conclusions." Those conclusions allegedly included Chua telling students it was "no accident" the women who clerked for Kavanaugh "looked like models," and Rubenfeld saying Kavanaugh opted for female clerks "with a certain look." Chua, who is reportedly dealing with a serious illness, said in a statement that the only trait Kavanaugh requires in his clerks is excellence. Yale Law School says it will look into the claims, which it says it had not previously heard. (Read more Brett Kavanaugh stories.)

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