[Ed. Note: Also read our follow-up post “Four Coolest Male TV News Lawyers.”]
There are a lot of lawyers who have turned in their bar cards for jobs in the media. And let’s face it, if you were good-looking enough, you’d probably do it too. But while a lot of lawyers have the brains to be talking heads, few attorneys have the goods in the eye candy department.
That’s why we wanted to know which female lawyers-turned-TV-journalists were most capable of bringing the hotness. And after some taxing research, the establishment of some official criteria, and much contentious debate, we let the numbers do the talking and arrived at our top four.
Judging hotness isn’t easy. Fun, yes. Easy, no. But we came up with the following methodology. Each candidate was awarded a score in six categories on a ten-point scale, for a total possible score of 60. If you don’t like our methodology, or didn’t find your favorite on the list, start your own damn website.
Law School: Most agree that looks and rank of law school are inversely proportional. Accordingly, the point delegation is as follows (according to U.S. News’ current rankings): T14 graduates are awarded 2 points; Tier-1 graduates of schools ranked 15-50 receive 4 points; Tier-2 graduates are awarded 6 points; TTT graduates get 8 points; Those from Tier-4 or ABA-unaccredited schools get a perfect 10.
Undergraduate Degree: Is a woman from Florida State hotter than a woman from Amherst? You better believe it. Undergraduate schools are a proxy for wildness. Just ask Joe Francis; he never rolled the “Girls Gone Wild” bus into New Haven, which is why we’re awarding “party school” points.
Talking Head: Here we’re awarding points based on the candidate’s total value as a media property. Their background, their on-air persona as well as the kinds of assignments they take all factor into the total point score.
Company She Keeps: Successful, powerful men get hot chicks, so it’s only fair to judge these women by their romantic links. We’re awarding points based on their companions’ level of power and success.
Buzz: Hotness begets hotness. So we’re crowd sourcing this one and awarding points based on the quantity and quality of the general media hype surrounding the hottie.
Facial Symmetry: Scientists have weighed in on symmetry, and balanced proportions are the key to detecting hotness. So, we’ll be awarding points based how well the left matches the right. Let’s just say that Photoshop and the metric system are involved. And our friends at Symmeter.com helped. Lowball symmetry is 90, so we’re awarding a point per percent above 90, rounding up on .5 or higher.
4. Savannah Guthrie (MSNBC)
Law School: Georgetown University Law Center (Rank 14 = T14)
Undergrad: University of Arizona. Playboy ranked The University of Arizona as the #5 top party school in 2009, and Hef’s word is good enough for us.
Talking Head: After receiving the top score on the Arizona bar exam in 2002, Guthrie began her media career with Court TV after serving as an associate at Akin Gump. She now works for NBC and has this month was upped to chief White House correspondent. All of this bodes well for a career as a serious journalist, and Bitter Lawyer has no doubt that she’s an accomplished intellect, but absolutely nothing on her resume screams hottie, and that’s a damn shame.
Company She Keeps: Guthrie is the second wife to English-born BBC presenter Mark Orchard, who she met covering the Michael Jackson trial. We don’t know much about him, but given the fascination most American women have with Brits, we’re willing to throw Guthrie a few extra points on the hottie scale.
Buzz: With more than seven-million Google results for Guthrie, there’s certainly a good amount of internet buzz about her. But little of it mentions her hotness. That’s surprising, given her girl-next-door good looks, but when it comes to dissecting hotness, the web doesn’t lie.
Facial Symmetry: 98.95384709384
Total Score: 34
3. Ann Coulter (AnnCoulter.com)
Law School: University of Michigan. (Rank 9 = T14)
Undergrad: Cornell. While some people say Cornell is one of the best party schools in the Ivy League, we feel confident in concluding that such a distinction is about as promising as being named the smartest lawyer…in North Dakota.
Talking Head: After clerking for a federal judge, working as a corporate lawyer and lending a hand to the Senate Judiciary Committee, Coulter’s first TV gig on MSNBC gives us a window into her hotness. According to a Time magazine article, Coulter was fired, not once, but twice from MSNBC in the ‘90s. Apparently, the network just couldn’t get enough of her, and the same can be said for audiences today who either love her, love to hate her, or hate that they kind of think she’s hot.
Company She Keeps: Coulter has never been married and isn’t known for dating the most powerful men, but there’s always a naughty factor to her relationships, which we like. According to Salon.com, she’s been linked to Spin Magazine founder Bob Guccione, Jr. (son of Penthouse founder Bob Guccione). And anyone who has seen Coulter on Real Time With Bill Maher knows there is a serious flirtation between Coulter and Maher. Plus, Coulter dated New York politician Andrew Stein. While Stein is a noted liberal, he told The New York Post that “opposites attract!” Hell, yeah they do, Andy. And there’s something hot about that kind of tension. Also a half point for being single.
Buzz: There’s a lot of information out there about Coulter and her sexiness. Hell, Google spat back nearly three-million results when we asked about her. But we thought the most telling entry was when Gawker blogged about the fact that Coulter had been named Ms. September in the Clare Boothe Luce Policy Institute’s pinup calendar. Bang!
Facial Symmetry: 95.56512044983359
Total Score: 35.5
2. Kimberly Guilfoyle (Fox News)
Law School: University of San Francisco Law School (Rank 98 = T2)
Undergrad: UC Davis. While Davis isn’t the best school in the country—or even in California—it isn’t a “party school” either. Davis doesn’t appear on any of the accredited party school lists. And then there’s this piece of sour news from the college kids: “Davis [does] not have the reputation for being [a] party school,” writes a poster. “[I]f you are looking for a [hard]core party school, I wouldn’t recommend going to Davis.” But it’s a state school nonetheless.
Talking Head: Starting her career as an ADA in the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office, she’s much more than a legal babe. Sure, Fox News pays her to look good and take firm positions on hot topics, but the winning tidbit is this: It’s been widely reported that while in law school, Guilfoyle did modeling for Macy’s and Victoria’s Secret. ‘Nuff said.
Company She Keeps: Guilfoyle used to be married to San Francisco mayor, one of MSN’s sexiest man and rising political star, Gavin Newsom. She divorced Newsom and married Eric Villency, a wealthy businessman and CEO of contemporary furniture company Maurice Villency. But now it looks like Guilfoyle’s second marriage is coming to an end. We’ll award her nine points for bagging two powerful dudes, and a half point because she’s practically single.
Buzz: Appreciated for her tongue action, it’s worth noting that a website called “Foxy Guilfoyle” exists. Also, Guilfoyle received a prominent mention in the acknowledgments of The ABS Diet: 6-Minute Meals for 6-Pack ABS book. We’re not sure why, but we’re pretty sure that a publisher selling a fitness book would be quick to excise celebrities who weren’t up to snuff.
Facial Symmetry: 94.99021278086141
Total Score: 43.5
1. Megyn Kelly (Fox News)
Law School: Albany Law School (Rank Tier 3 = TTT)
Talking Head: A litigation associate at Jones Days in D.C., Kelly broke into journalism and rose quickly. She’s done her fair share of local and national reporting for Fox News but hasn’t managed to get beyond the legal stories. She’s covered notable events like the indictment of Scooter Libby and the confirmation hearings of Samuel Alito, John Roberts, and even had a lookalike dress-up day during Judge Sotomayor’s confirmation hearings. Fox knows the more they play up her legal background, the less hot she is, so sometimes she’s just an everyday, girl-fighting cheerleader.
Company She Keeps: Kelly has been divorced once, but there’s little information on her first husband. She then got remarried to her current hubby, Douglas Brunt, CEO of Authentium, a high-level internet security company. Normally, that wouldn’t get you very far on the hotness front, but in the digital age, computer geeks get some of the best babes.
Buzz: It’s Megyn with a “y,” and she has an f/k/a of Megyn Kendall, which is definitely hot. Then we’re going straight to the videotape. Exhibit A: One rather creepy clip collection of Kelly’s work on Fox.
Facial Symmetry: 97.26734048651092
Total Score: 44
Congrats to Ms. Kelly.
Check out other lists, tallies and scores to settle in Bitter by Numbers.