Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Only Attorneys Need Apply? Democratic Party = "Lawyers' Party?"

With the selection of the Clinton/Kaine ticket, EVERY Democratic nominee for President/Vice President since 1984 has been a lawyer (attended law school), according to our review of public bios (See chart below.). [BTW, Bernie Sanders did not attend law school, according to public bios.]

During that same time period, most Republican nominees have NOT been lawyers (some exceptions: Pence this year; Romney, if you count his joint MBA/Juris degrees received before he went into finance; Quayle and Dole).

By the numbers, 100% of Democrats attended law school (of 18 nominee slots, eg President/Vice President in an election cycle & 13 people, because some "filled a slot" more than once -- Al Gore filled slots three times, for example, during two VP runs and one Presidential run.). For the Republicans, app. 22% of the slots were filled by those who attended law school & app. 31% of the people nominated (some more than once) had attended law school.
We thought to check this after considering the different "word clouds" from ‪#‎RNCinCleveland‬ (heavy on "ISIS," "military," etc) and ‪#‎DNC2016‬, where "public service/servant" has been used extensively, often referring to lawyers.
Obviously, given the different views of the two political groups on government regulation, it's not surprising that being a lawyer now appears a requirement for making the Dem national ticket (btw, last Dem non-lawyer we could find was Jimmy Carter, a Navy officer and farmer before entering politics and being elected president in 1976 and then running unsuccessfully for reelection in 1980.)

FYI, there are roughly 3X as many "top executives" as lawyers in the American workplace, according to government labor statistics, and lawyers are outnumbered by other professions such as farmers/ranchers and high school teachers.

We've got our opinions on teams of lawyers, especially those with limited experience in business or even private practice, running a country that depends on a vibrant business environment. What do you think? Please let us know in the comments.

"There is no shortage of lawyers in Washington, DC. In fact, there may be more lawyers than people:" attributed to Sandra Day O'Connor

Attended Law School                         Non-Law School Grad/Profession Before Politics
Ronald Reagan (Calif.) actor/union official/corporate spokesman– George H. W. Bush (Tex.) businessman, gov official
George H. W. Bush (Tex.) businessman Dan Quayle (Ind.)
Bob Dole (Kans.) – Jack Kemp pro athlete (N.Y.)
George W. Bush (Tex.) – Dick Cheney (Wyo.) gov official
John McCain Navy officer (Ariz.) – Sarah Palin (Alaska)broadcaster 
Mitt Romney (Mass.) – Paul Ryan (Wis.) Cong. staffer
Donald Trump businessman (N.Y.) – Mike Pence (Ind.)

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