February 28, 1967. LBJ announces that he will nominate Ramsey Clark as the new Attorney General. Ramsey Clark’s father, Tom Clark, is currently a Supreme Court Justice: in a conversation with Ramsey Clark last month, on January 25, the President asks point blank (at about 4:01): “Do you think you can be Attorney General with your daddy on the Court?”
Tom Clark will resign shortly after the President announces the appointment of his son. LBJ now has a vacant spot to fill. The same January 25 telephone conversation hints strongly at his likely choice: Solicitor General Thurgood Marshall.
Ramsey Clark speaks highly of Marshall. That part of the conversation begins around 1:59, when LBJ asks about Marshall’s record and Clark explains that the Solicitor General considers it part of his job to argue “even the losers.” They go on to discuss the kind of Supreme Court Justice that Marshall would be, whether he would be “in the pocket of the liberals, 100% of the time,” to which Clark replies that on some kinds of cases, other than civil rights, Marshall would likely reflect “an older generation’s attitudes.”