Lawyers vs. non-lawyers

September 4, 2008
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The race for the next president of the United States is Democrats vs. Republicans, but it’s also lawyers vs. non-lawyers.

Both Democratic Sens. Barack Obama and Joe Biden have law degrees, whereas on the Republican side Sen. John McCain and Gov. Sarah Palin never went to law school.

It seems nearly every party-nominated candidate for president has either a law degree or a military background (which, to me, makes Gov. Palin an even more interesting choice for veep because she has neither).

Looking back at the candidates running for both parties in the primaries, the overwhelming majority held law degrees. It’s kind of like the question, “Which came first, the chicken or the egg?” Do those who have political aspirations choose law school as a career boost, or do those who become lawyers later decide to enter politics?

When it comes to elections, does attending law school and practicing law give some candidates an edge over others? Are attorneys considered more qualified by the general public to go into politics than someone who has a business degree or communications degree but works his or her way up through the political ranks to become a governor, representative, or senator?
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