In many ways, Barrett’s resume is a testament to the trail blazed by Ginsburg. Like the late justice, Barrett graduated at the top of her law school class and served as a judicial clerk, first for federal appellate judge Laurence Silberman and then for Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. After a stint in private practice, Barrett joined the faculty at Notre Dame Law School, where she was named “distinguished professor of the year” three times.
Barrett has earned lavish praise from colleagues across the ideological spectrum. In 2017, when Trump nominated Barrett to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, her Notre Dame colleagues unanimously supported her in a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee. The law professors wrote that they had a “wide range of political views” but were “united however in our judgment about Amy.” She was also endorsed in a letter signed by every former Supreme Court law clerk who clerked while Barrett worked for Justice Scalia. The former clerks’ letter described Barrett as a “woman of remarkable intellect and character,” as someone who “conducted herself with professionalism, grace, and integrity” and “was able to work collaboratively with her colleagues (even those with whom she disagreed) on challenging legal questions.” Barrett was ultimately confirmed to the Seventh Circuit with bipartisan support.