The Law: A Dressing Down for Not Dressing Up

When such weighty concerns as inept trial lawyers are not on his mind, Chief Justice Burger can get his pique up about remarkably picayune matters. Lately he and some fellow Justices have been smoldering about the attire of attorneys appearing before the Supreme Court.

Burger was particularly upset by an incident in October. A woman lawyer about to argue a case told Court Clerk Michael Kodak, "All I own are pantsuits. Should I go out and buy a dress?" Rodak checked with Burger and reported back that the Chief had said "no to pantsuits in...

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