How Appealing

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

San Diego Padres 4, Philadelphia Phillies 2: I was at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia this evening with some friends, to watch the Phillies host the Padres on Toyota Jamie Moyer 2007 NL East Champions Bobble Figurine night.

Moyer, who happened to be this evening's starting pitcher for the Phillies, recorded his first base hit of the season. Unfortunately, the Phillies did not win the game, and Moyer took the loss. On the bright side, the Phillies are off to their best start in years and are just one-half game out of first place in the National League East.

You can access the box score of tonight's game at this link, while wraps from MLB.com are available here and here.
Posted at 11:57 PM by Howard Bashman



Fourth Circuit again reinstates "dirty dancing" plaintiff's equal protection claim: Back on October 7, 2005, I had a post titled "Allegedly provocative dancer banished, due to her supposedly suggestive moves, from dances held at town's community center brings federal civil rights claim and wins a portion of her Fourth Circuit appeal from an order dismissing the case" reporting on a ruling that the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit issued that day.

On remand, following discovery, the federal district court granted summary judgment against the plaintiff on her equal protection claim. Today, however, a unanimous three-judge Fourth Circuit panel, by means of a non-precedential ruling, has reversed the grant of summary judgment and has remanded the case for trial. As a result, it appears that the U.S. District Court for the Western District of North Carolina, at Asheville, will soon need to conduct a "dirty dancing"-related trial. And another Fourth Circuit appeal in this case could result therefrom.
Posted at 04:25 PM by Howard Bashman



"US murky on judges' role in reviewing Guantanamo Bay cases": The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "The Bush administration assured the Supreme Court last December that Guantanamo Bay prisoners who felt they were unfairly being detained could have their cases thoroughly reviewed by a federal appeals court. Now, it's not so clear."
Posted at 03:00 PM by Howard Bashman


"Abortion ultrasound bill fails on tie vote": The Miami Herald provides a news update that begins, "A proposed law requiring all Florida women seeking an abortion to have an ultrasound -- then have a chance to view the image and have it explained to her -- failed in a tie vote Wednesday after almost 90 minutes of impassioned debate about privacy, pregnancy and women's rights that crossed party lines."
Posted at 12:47 PM by Howard Bashman


"People of Lesbos take gay group to court over term 'Lesbian'": The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "A Greek court has been asked to draw the line between the natives of the Aegean Sea island of Lesbos and the world's gay women."
Posted at 12:10 PM by Howard Bashman


Best wishes to the anonymous author of the "Decision of the Day" blog: As this post from today indicates, the blog may have reached its conclusion.
Posted at 11:48 AM by Howard Bashman


"Circuit Court will make rare Albany sitting": The Times Union of Albany, New York today contains an article that begins, "Court junkies, take notice. For the first time in recent memory, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit -- an appellate court in the federal system -- is coming to Albany next month to hear cases." According to the article, this marks the first time since 1994 or 1995 that the Second Circuit has heard oral argument outside of New York City.
Posted at 11:22 AM by Howard Bashman


Second Circuit holds that the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act requires dismissal of New York City's lawsuit, against manufacturers and wholesale sellers of firearms, seeking injunctive relief to inhibit the diversion of guns into illegal markets: You can access today's ruling, by a divided three-judge panel, at this link.

At the blog "Wait A Second!" Stephen Bergstein discusses the ruling in a post titled "Statute prohibiting lawsuits against gun industry is constitutional."

Update: The Associated Press reports that "Appeals court tosses out NYC lawsuit against gun industry."
Posted at 11:15 AM by Howard Bashman



"Justices come off the bench to chat; Possibly signaling a new era of openness, Scalia and several court colleagues are granting interviews": James Oliphant has this article today in The Chicago Tribune.
Posted at 11:08 AM by Howard Bashman


"Bin Laden's driver 4th to boycott military trials; Despite a judge's pleas, Osama bin Laden's driver Salim Hamdan apologetically declared a boycott of his trial at Guantanamo Bay": Carol Rosenberg has this article today in The Miami Herald.

The Washington Post reports today that "Guantanamo Detainee Rejects Court Procedure."

And The New York Times contains an article headlined "An Apologetic Boycott in Good-Natured Banter."
Posted at 09:34 AM by Howard Bashman



"Florida abortion bill debate gets hypothetical; The Senate debate over a bill that would require women seeking abortions to first pay for a sonogram turned to hypothetical scenarios": This article appears today in The Miami Herald.
Posted at 09:30 AM by Howard Bashman


"Supreme Court is rejecting broad legal challenges; Its ruling on Indiana's voter ID law signals that the justices want evidence of actual violations of constitutional rights": David G. Savage has this article today in The Los Angeles Times.
Posted at 09:25 AM by Howard Bashman


"State Asks Supreme Court to Permit Execution; Defense Objects to Lethal Drug Protocol": Today in The Washington Post, Robert Barnes has an article that begins, "The U.S. Supreme Court will consider next month whether to allow Virginia to set an execution date for a death row inmate who contends that the commonwealth's lethal injection procedures do not meet the standards that the court recently found constitutional."
Posted at 09:22 AM by Howard Bashman


"Lawyer Urges Canada to Try a Citizen Held by U.S. Forces": This article appears today in The New York Times.

The Toronto Globe and Mail reports today that "Khadr a typical Canadian, lawyer says; In first appearance before parliamentary committee, defence team pushes for repatriation of Canadian accused of killing U.S. soldier."

And The Toronto Star contains an article headlined "Canada is Khadr's 'only hope'; Accused war criminal wouldn't be a risk if returned, his U.S. military lawyer tells Commons committee."
Posted at 09:20 AM by Howard Bashman



"Judge Dismisses Connecticut's Challenge to Education Law": The New York Times today contains an article that begins, "A federal judge has dismissed a closely watched challenge to President Bush's signature education law, ruling that the State of Connecticut failed to prove that federal officials had forced it to spend its own money to comply with the law’s requirements."

And The Hartford Courant reports today that "Last Of State's No-Child Suit Dismissed."

You can access at this link Monday's ruling of the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut.
Posted at 09:12 AM by Howard Bashman



"Montana Museum Board Breached Duty, Court Says": Today's edition of The New York Times contains an article that begins, "The Montana Supreme Court dismissed on Tuesday the board of the Charles M. Bair Family Museum in Martinsdale, Mont., saying it breached its fiduciary duties by closing the museum in 2002."

The Billings Gazette reports today that "Board erred in closing Bair museum, high court rules; Ruling orders trustee to replace board members."

And The Great Falls Tribune reports today that "Ruling will keep Bair home open."

You can access yesterday's ruling of the Supreme Court of Montana at this link. In addition, the briefs filed in the case can be accessed via this link.
Posted at 09:05 AM by Howard Bashman



"Foreign Law and the First Amendment: How British courts threaten free speech in America." Floyd Abrams has this op-ed today in The Wall Street Journal.
Posted at 08:40 AM by Howard Bashman


"Judicial Nominee Argued Against Education Dept." Today in The New York Sun, Joseph Goldstein has an article that begins, "A lawyer who recently argued a case at the U.S. Supreme Court against the city's Department of Education has been nominated for a federal judgeship in New York."

And today in The Salt Lake Tribune, Pamela Manson reports that "Bush picks SLC trial lawyer Waddoups for federal judgeship."

You can view the official announcement of yesterday's federal judicial nominations at this link.
Posted at 08:20 AM by Howard Bashman



"Rambus Wins on Shredding Appeal": law.com provides this report.

And Reuters reports that "Rambus says court sides with it in Samsung suit."

You can access yesterday's ruling of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit at this link.
Posted at 08:15 AM by Howard Bashman



"Tension Mounts Over U.S. Bench Vacancies; A total of 28 nominees await approval; some deals are being made": Pamela A. MacLean has this article in this week's issue of The National Law Journal.
Posted at 08:09 AM by Howard Bashman


"Kennedy v. Louisiana and the Lessons of a Supreme Court Oral Argument": Sherry F. Colb has this essay online today at FindLaw.
Posted at 08:05 AM by Howard Bashman


Tuesday, April 29, 2008

"Port Authority Liable in 1993 Trade Center Attack": The New York Times on Wednesday will contain an article that begins, "A state appeals court ruled on Tuesday that the Port Authority was liable for damages caused by the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, because it knew about but chose to ignore 'an extreme and potentially catastrophic vulnerability that would have been open and obvious to any terrorist who cared to investigate and exploit it.'"

And The Associated Press reports that "Agency loses appeal in 1993 World Trade Center bombing case."

You can access today's ruling of the New York State Supreme Court, Appellate Division, First Department, at this link.
Posted at 11:14 PM by Howard Bashman



"State appeals ceded lands ruling to U.S. Supreme Court": The Honolulu Star-Bulletin provides this news update.

And The Honolulu Advertiser provides a news update headlined "State appeals ceded lands ruling."
Posted at 11:04 PM by Howard Bashman



"Sun-Times, Trib ask court to unseal R. Kelly documents, proceedings": The Chicago Sun-Times today contains an article that begins, "News organizations asked the Illinois Supreme Court on Monday to order a judge to unseal court documents and proceedings in R&B star R. Kelly’s child pornography case."
Posted at 11:00 PM by Howard Bashman


"Judge in veil case to issue written ruling; Woman takes case to federal court; lawyer says rights violated": The Detroit Free Press provides a news update that begins, "A Muslim woman who lost a small-claims suit in Hamtramck district court in 2006 after she refused to remove her religious veil during testimony took her case before a federal judge today, hoping to overturn the district judge's decision and establish precedent in eastern Michigan courtrooms."
Posted at 08:32 PM by Howard Bashman


"A timely reminder from Justice Stevens: Supreme Court's voter ID ruling underscores high stakes for new president." Tom Curry, national affairs writer for MSNBC, provides this report.
Posted at 08:10 PM by Howard Bashman


"Va. Supreme Court to revisit divisive spam case; It upheld convictions but will consider constitutional issue": The Richmond Times-Dispatch today contains an article that begins, "The Supreme Court of Virginia yesterday agreed to a limited rehearing of its closely divided decision upholding the first felony spam convictions in the country."

My earlier coverage of the Supreme Court of Virginia's original 4-3 ruling in this case, issued February 29, 2008, appears here and here.

Yesterday's order granting rehearing on specified issues can be accessed at this link.
Posted at 08:04 PM by Howard Bashman



"O'Connor to hear cases as visiting judge to Hub court; Ex-justice to serve US appeals court": The Boston Globe today contains an article that begins, "She left the nation's highest court two years ago, but retired US Supreme Court justice Sandra Day O'Connor evidently still likes to hear lawyers make arguments before her. And where better than Boston to watch members of the bar mix it up? O'Connor is scheduled to serve as a visiting judge today on the US Court of Appeals for the First Circuit at the John Joseph Moakley Courthouse, said Susan Goldberg, deputy circuit executive."

And today in The Providence (R.I.) Journal, Edward Fitzpatrick reports that "O’Connor back on the bench."
Posted at 07:48 PM by Howard Bashman



"Gettysburg trip changed perspective of Supreme Court justice": Mark Sherman of The Associated Press has a report that begins, "A trip to the Gettysburg battlefield changed Supreme Court Justice David Souter's perspective on handling difficult cases that inevitably come a judge's way. In a rare public address Tuesday, Souter admitted that at least one Supreme Court case -- he didn't name it -- once prompted him to ask, 'Why do I have to resolve that case?'"
Posted at 06:05 PM by Howard Bashman


"Court: FDA should address restaurant calorie listings issue." The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "A federal appeals court said Tuesday it wants to hear the Food and Drug Administration's position on whether its rules permit cities to force restaurants to display calorie counts for their menu items."
Posted at 05:11 PM by Howard Bashman


"Law Restricting College Aid for Drug Offenders Upheld": At "The School Law Blog" of Education Week, Mark Walsh has a post that begins, "A federal appeals court has rejected a constitutional challenge to a federal law that restricts, and in some cases bars, students with drug convictions from participation in federal college aid programs."

You can access today's ruling of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit at this link.
Posted at 05:04 PM by Howard Bashman



"Terror trials rushed, officer charges; Former Pentagon prosecutor testified that political pressure demanded speedier, less transparent trials": Carol Rosenberg has this article today in The Miami Herald.

The Washington Post today contains a front page article headlined "From Chief Prosecutor To Critic at Guantanamo."

And The New York Times reports today that "Ex-Prosecutor Tells of Push by Pentagon on Detainees."
Posted at 10:04 AM by Howard Bashman



"Abortion bill heads to vote; The Florida Senate will decide Tuesday whether ultrasound scans should be required for women seeking abortions": This article appears today in The Miami Herald.
Posted at 10:01 AM by Howard Bashman


"U.S. admits negligence in detainee's death": Today in The San Francisco Chronicle, Bob Egelko has an article that begins, "The federal government has admitted that its negligence was responsible for the death of an illegal immigrant who pleaded during 11 months in custody for treatment for a condition that proved to be terminal penile cancer."
Posted at 10:00 AM by Howard Bashman


"High Court Upholds Indiana Law On Voter ID; 6-3 Ruling Calls Measure Reasonable to Fight Fraud": Robert Barnes has this front page article today in The Washington Post. The newspaper also contains an editorial entitled "Carded at the Polls: Indiana's voter ID law is ruled constitutional; it's still a bad solution to a nonproblem."

Today in The Los Angeles Times, David G. Savage reports that "Voter ID law upheld; The high court's ruling that a photo can be required is a victory for Republicans." The newspaper also contains an editorial entitled "Supreme Court OKs voter ID: By upholding the Indiana law, the court tarnishes its record of promoting democracy."

In USA Today, Joan Biskupic and Richard Wolf report that "Ruling may spur more voter ID laws; Justices uphold Indiana photo requirement."

James Oliphant of The Chicago Tribune reports that "Indiana voter ID ruling is victory for GOP; Critics fear open door to partisan election rules."

Warren Richey of The Christian Science Monitor reports that "U.S. high court upholds voter photo I.D.; Monday's ruling gives a green light to aggressive antifraud efforts often favored by the GOP."

The Boston Globe reports that "Supreme Court upholds voter ID law; Justices say states can make checks at polling places."

law.com's Tony Mauro reports that "Supreme Court Upholds Indiana Voter ID Law."

The Washington Times reports that "Court upholds requisite ID at voter polls."

The Indianapolis Star reports that "High court lets state voter ID law stand; 6-3 decision could pave way for similar rules across U.S."

The Louisville Courier-Journal reports that "Supreme Court backs Indiana's photo ID law for voters; Justices: Photo rule no big burden."

The Fort Wayne Journal Gazette reports that "Voter ID law upheld by justices; Decision avoids rush to rewrite statute before May 6 primary."

The Times of Munster, Indiana reports that "U.S. Supreme Court upholds Voter ID Law."

Yesterday evening's broadcast of the PBS program "The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer" contained a segment entitled "Ruling on Voter ID Law May Spur Tighter State Regulation" (transcript with links to audio and video) featuring Marcia Coyle.

From National Public Radio, today's broadcast of "Morning Edition" contained an audio segment entitled "Supreme Court Upholds Indiana's Voter ID Law" featuring Nina Totenberg. Yesterday evening's broadcast of "All Things Considered" contained an audio segment entitled "High Court Supports Indiana Voter ID Law" also featuring Nina Totenberg. And yesterday's broadcast of "Day to Day" contained an audio segment entitled "Supreme Court Approves Voter ID Requirement" featuring Dahlia Lithwick. RealPlayer is required to launch these audio segments.

In commentary, The New York Times contains an editorial entitled "The Court Fumbles on Voting Rights."

Finally, The Wall Street Journal contains an editorial entitled "Photo Finish," while John Fund has an op-ed entitled "A Victory Against Voter Fraud."
Posted at 09:30 AM by Howard Bashman



"Lawmaker Threatens Subpoenas for Aides; Officials Spurn Hearing on Torture": This article appears today in The Washington Post.
Posted at 09:17 AM by Howard Bashman


"Getting Away With Torture: Legal maneuvering has shielded those responsible for conditions at Guantanamo Bay." Dahlia Lithwick has this essay in the May 5, 2008 issue of Newsweek.
Posted at 09:15 AM by Howard Bashman


"Could Constitutional Flaw Unravel Eight Years of Patent Board Rulings?" Marcia Coyle has this article in this week's issue of The National Law Journal. Via the blog "Patently-O," you can access at this link the petition for writ of certiorari that is the subject of this article.
Posted at 09:10 AM by Howard Bashman


"A New Look at Race When Death Is Sought": Today's issue of The New York Times contains this new installment of Adam Liptak's "Sidebar" column.
Posted at 09:02 AM by Howard Bashman


"Justice lashes out at GOP state senators": The Philadelphia Inquirer today contains a front page article that begins, "State Supreme Court Chief Justice Ronald D. Castille has toughened his criticism of Senate Republicans for not acting on four interim appointments to state appellate courts, and dismissed their arguments about diversity as 'misplaced.'"

And earlier this month, The Patriot-News of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania published an article headlined "Top justice backs Rendell on 4 appellate nominees."
Posted at 08:37 AM by Howard Bashman



Monday, April 28, 2008

"In a 6-to-3 Vote, Justices Uphold a Voter ID Law": Linda Greenhouse will have this article Tuesday in The New York Times.

Tomorrow's newspaper will also contain an article headlined "Decision Is Likely to Spur Voter ID Laws in More States."
Posted at 09:58 PM by Howard Bashman



Parts two and three of National Public Radio's interview with Justice Antonin Scalia: Part two appeared on today's broadcast of "Day to Day" in an audio segment entitled "Justice Scalia: Be Likeable and Avoid Contractions."

And part three appeared on this evening's broadcast of "All Things Considered" in an audio segment entitled "Scalia Vigorously Defends a 'Dead' Constitution."

Both segments featured Nina Totenberg, and RealPlayer is required to launch these audio segments. Earlier today, I linked here to part one of this three-part interview.
Posted at 07:32 PM by Howard Bashman



Carol Rosenberg of The Miami Herald is reporting: Today she has articles headlined "Bin Laden driver scruffy, threatens boycott" and "Alleged al Qaeda plotters consult Navy lawyers."

Update: The Associated Press reports that "Bin Laden former driver refuses to participate in trial."
Posted at 03:20 PM by Howard Bashman



"Supreme Court Upholds Ind. Voter ID Law": Robert Barnes of The Washington Post has this news update.

David G. Savage of The Los Angeles Times has a news update headlined "Supreme Court upholds Indiana's voter ID law; Republicans have pushed for such laws in an effort to combat 'voter fraud'; Democrats have argued they are attempts to discourage elderly and poor people from casting ballots."

Michael Doyle of McClatchy Newspapers has an article headlined "Supreme Court: States can require voter IDs."

The Indianapolis Star provides a news update headlined "Supreme Court upholds Indiana voter ID law."

At "The Swamp" blog of The Chicago Tribune, James Oliphant has a post titled "Supreme Court upholds 'Voter ID' law."

Greg Stohr of Bloomberg News reports that "Voter-Identification Law Upheld by U.S. Supreme Court."

And James Vicini of Reuters reports that "Top court upholds photo ID voting law."
Posted at 03:08 PM by Howard Bashman



"Making Your Case: The Art of Persuading Judges." ABA Journal has posted online at this link substantial excerpts from the new book by Antonin Scalia and Bryan A. Garner.

And ABA Journal has also posted online an mp3 podcast interview with the authors, which you can access online at this link or download for listening later via this link (25.0 MB mp3 audio file).
Posted at 12:15 PM by Howard Bashman



"Justice Scalia, the Great Dissenter, Opens Up": This audio segment (RealPlayer required; view transcript at this link) featuring Nina Totenberg appeared on today's broadcast of NPR's "Morning Edition."

This is the first of a three-part interview that NPR will be broadcasting.
Posted at 11:37 AM by Howard Bashman



"Victims of Genital Mutilation Face Deportation": Today in The New York Sun, Joseph Goldstein has an article that begins, "A federal appeals court in Manhattan will hear arguments tomorrow on whether three women who were forced to undergo genital mutilation in West Africa should be granted safe harbor in America."
Posted at 10:47 AM by Howard Bashman


"Court rejects voter ID challenge; no new grants": Lyle Denniston has this post at "SCOTUSblog."

Today's lone ruling of the U.S. Supreme Court in an argued case issued in Crawford v. Marion County Election Board, No. 07-21. Justice John Paul Stevens announced the judgment of the Court and issued an opinion in which the Chief Justice and Justice Anthony M. Kennedy joined. Justice Antonin Scalia issued an opinion concurring in the judgment, in which Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel A. Alito, Jr. joined. Justice David H. Souter issued a dissenting opinion, in which Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg joined. And Justice Stephen G. Breyer issued a dissenting opinion. You can access the decision at this link and the oral argument transcript at this link.

In early news coverage, Mark Sherman of The Associated Press reports that "Supreme Court upholds photo ID law for voters in Indiana."

And you can access today's Order List at this link.
Posted at 10:10 AM by Howard Bashman



"Suing the DA: Should prosecutors be immune from civil lawsuits?" Online at Reason, Radley Balko has an essay that begins, "Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear the case of Thomas Goldstein, an ex-marine who was convicted of murdering his neighbor."
Posted at 08:57 AM by Howard Bashman


"Unusual Nonsense: The Supreme Court's continued failure to rationalize its decisions about cruel and unusual punishment." Benjamin Wittes has this essay online today at The New Republic.
Posted at 08:55 AM by Howard Bashman


"Lawyers Fear Monitoring in Cases on Terrorism": The New York Times today contains an article that begins, "Thomas Nelson, an Oregon lawyer, has lived in a state of perpetual jet lag for the last two years. Every few weeks, he boards a plane in Portland and flies to the Middle East to meet with a high-profile Saudi client who cannot enter the United States because he faces charges here of financing terrorism. Mr. Nelson says he does not dare to phone this client or send him e-mail messages because of what many prominent criminal defense lawyers say is a well-founded fear that all of their contacts are being monitored by the United States government."
Posted at 08:25 AM by Howard Bashman


"The ABA's 'Diversity' Diktat: How the American Bar Association mandates discrimination in our law schools." Gail Heriot has this op-ed today in The Wall Street Journal.
Posted at 08:20 AM by Howard Bashman


Sunday, April 27, 2008

"Justice Scalia On The Record: 60 Minutes' Lesley Stahl Interviews The Justice About His Life And Career." CBS News has posted online this transcript (for the single-page print version of the transcript, click here) of tonight's interview of Justice Antonin Scalia on "60 Minutes."

CBS News has also posted online the video of this evening's "60 Minutes" interview in two parts: part one and part two.
Posted at 08:50 PM by Howard Bashman



"Scalia opens up on '60 Minutes'": The Associated Press provides this report.

And at "The BLT: The Blog of Legal Times," Tony Mauro has a post titled "Scalia Speaks Out."
Posted at 08:40 PM by Howard Bashman



Saturday, April 26, 2008

"Sniper Fights Death Sentence; Lawyers Argue Muhammad Had Mitigating Factors": The Washington Post contains this article today.
Posted at 11:54 PM by Howard Bashman


"South Dakota to Revisit Restrictions on Abortion": This article appears today in The New York Times.
Posted at 11:45 PM by Howard Bashman


"Letters Give C.I.A. Tactics a Legal Rationale": The New York Times on Sunday will contain an article that begins, "The Justice Department has told Congress that American intelligence operatives attempting to thwart terrorist attacks can legally use interrogation methods that might otherwise be prohibited under international law."

The letters referenced in the article can be accessed here, here, here, and here.
Posted at 09:32 PM by Howard Bashman



"Top court puts leash on random searches by sniffer dogs": The Toronto Globe and Mail today contains an article that begins, "The Supreme Court of Canada jettisoned evidence of narcotics detected by sniffer dogs at an Alberta bus terminal and an Ontario high school because the individuals involved had a reasonable expectation of privacy. The majority of the court in a pair of 6-3 decisions yesterday said police must have a reasonable suspicion an individual has a narcotic before they can conduct a search with sniffer dogs. The rulings, which featured an unusually factionalized court and starkly differing constitutional visions, provides guidelines to police for sniffer-dog searches in public places such as malls and stadiums."

The Toronto Star reports today that "Random searches curbed; Bringing in sniffer dogs without justification violates privacy rights, Supreme Court rules."

The Sarnia Observer contains articles headlined "Search deemed unlawful" and "Supreme Court got it right; Supreme court says police actions were 'unjustifiable.'"

The London Free Press contains an article headlined "Hands off backpacks."

The Edmonton Sun contains an article headlined "'Power to dealer'; Parents' group slams court ruling on sniffer dogs."

The Vancouver Sun reports that "Muzzling of sniffer dog use won't alter private business; There's still money in detecting illegal materials in buildings, ships, trucks."

Canwest News Service reports that "Supreme Court muzzles sniffer dogs."

CBC News provides a report headlined "Random use of police sniffer dogs breaches charter: top court."

Reuters reports that "Canada's high court limits drug-sniffing dogs."

Bloomberg News reports that "Canadian Police Barred From Random School Searches by Top Court."

And Agence France-Presse reports that "Canada high court rules police dog's sniff is unlawful search."

You can access here and here yesterday's rulings of the Supreme Court of Canada.
Posted at 03:14 PM by Howard Bashman



"John Demjanjuk's lawyer files appeal of deportation with U.S. Supreme Court": This article appears today in The Cleveland Plain Dealer.
Posted at 03:02 PM by Howard Bashman


"Detainees' Mental Health Is Latest Legal Battle": The New York Times today contains a front page article that begins, "Next month, Salim Ahmed Hamdan, a Yemeni who was once a driver for Osama bin Laden, could become the first detainee to be tried for war crimes in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba."
Posted at 11:44 AM by Howard Bashman


Friday, April 25, 2008

"Stock Holdings May Force Justices to Sit Out Apartheid Case": Today in The Daily Journal of California, Brent Kendall has a front page article that begins, "When the U.S. Supreme Court meets today in a private conference, it could face the mother of all recusal problems for justices who own stocks."
Posted at 11:50 PM by Howard Bashman


"Opponents Challenge Death Penalty in Florida": This audio segment (RealPlayer required) appeared on this evening's broadcast of NPR's "All Things Considered."
Posted at 11:40 PM by Howard Bashman


"How Dumb Are We? How long will women shoulder the blame for the pay gap?" Dahlia Lithwick has this jurisprudence essay online at Slate.
Posted at 11:38 PM by Howard Bashman


Reading Phillies 3, Connecticut Defenders 2: My son and I traveled to Reading, Pennsylvania this evening to watch the Reading Phillies -- the AA Eastern League affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies -- host the Connecticut Defenders -- the AA Eastern League affiliate of the San Francisco Giants. Not only did the game feature a Chase Utley bobblehead doll giveaway, but Phillies center fielder Shane Victorino was on rehab assignment to Reading and started the game. As luck would have it, our seats were in the front row along the first base line just past the base, so my son obtained Victorino's signature on a baseball as Shane was heading back to the dugout after his pre-game warmups. Victorino went one-for-three at the plate and tracked down some well-hit balls in the outfield. He did not seem to be experiencing any lingering effects of the leg injury that put him on the disabled list.

Trailing the game 2-1 at the end of the first inning, Reading scored two runs on a home run in the bottom of the 7th inning and held on to win 3-2. You can view the box score at this link, while wraps are available here and here.

My son and I are likely to see Victorino again on Sunday, when we travel to the Allentown, Pennsylvania region to watch the Lehigh Valley IronPigs -- AAA affiliate of the Phillies -- host the Rochester Red Wings -- the AAA affiliate of the Minnesota Twins -- in an International League match-up.

But it won't be until Wednesday that I retrieve our next Phillies-related bobblehead doll. And by then, Shane Victorino should be back with the major league Phillies.
Posted at 11:25 PM by Howard Bashman



"Court says Neuqua student can wear anti-gay T-shirt": This article appears today in The Daily Herald of Arlington Heights, Illinois.

My earlier coverage of Wednesday's Seventh Circuit ruling appears at this link.
Posted at 04:07 PM by Howard Bashman



"Chief Justice Names New Executive Committee Chairman": The Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts today issued a news release that begins, "Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr. has appointed Anthony J. Scirica, the Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, to be chairman of the Executive Committee of the Judicial Conference of the United States."
Posted at 12:05 PM by Howard Bashman


"Official defends VA's mental health effort": Today in The San Francisco Chronicle, Bob Egelko has an article that begins, "The Department of Veterans Affairs' top health official, testifying in a lawsuit by veterans' groups that accuse the VA of inept mental health care, cautioned Thursday against overstating the problem of mental illness among returning troops and said most patients are satisfied with their treatment."
Posted at 10:07 AM by Howard Bashman


"New trial ordered on San Bernardino strip club; The Flesh Club says San Bernardino misled a judge in 1995, leading to an injunction against nude dancing": The Los Angeles Times today contains an article that begins, "The state Supreme Court ruled Thursday that a new trial be held to determine if the city of San Bernardino intentionally misled a judge during its battle to close down a notorious strip club that officials said was actually a brothel."

The Press-Enterprise of Riverside, California reports today that "New hearing ordered for Flesh Club; The court focuses on whether the judge received needed information."

And The San Bernardino County Sun reports that "Flesh Club victory on hold; State high court sends case back to trial court."

You can access yesterday's ruling of the Supreme Court of California at this link.
Posted at 10:05 AM by Howard Bashman



"Effort intensifies for same-sex marriage ban": Today's edition of The San Francisco Chronicle contains an article that begins, "The battle over same-sex marriage in California heated up Thursday, when supporters of an initiative to ban it in the state's Constitution submitted more than 1.1 million signatures in an effort to qualify the measure for the November ballot."
Posted at 10:00 AM by Howard Bashman


"Court reduces Genentech damages in royalty suit": Bob Egelko and Bernadette Tansey have this article today in The San Francisco Chronicle.

And law.com reports that "$300 Million Award Stands Against Genentech, but $200 Million in Punitives Get Tossed; Case drew national attention when jurors hit Genentech with huge damages for allegedly cheating center of billions in royalties."

My earlier coverage of yesterday's ruling of the Supreme Court of California appears at this link.
Posted at 09:57 AM by Howard Bashman



"Domenici Rebuked for Call to U.S. Attorney Before Election": This article appears today in The Washington Post.
Posted at 09:47 AM by Howard Bashman


"The War on Terror Is Not a Crime: Bush antiterror policies have been repeatedly vindicated in the courts." David B. Rivkin Jr. and Lee A. Casey have this op-ed today in The Wall Street Journal.
Posted at 09:35 AM by Howard Bashman


"Damages reach $35 million in '01 Bridgeport fire; The Bridgeport business blaze led to a class-action suit; The last of 16 defendants agreed to settle for $1 million": This article appears today in The Philadelphia Inquirer. Earlier this month, I began working as appellate counsel for what was then the only non-settling defendant in the case.
Posted at 09:27 AM by Howard Bashman


"If a drug has FDA's OK, should you be able to sue? Allow litigation, but make it hard to win cases against drugmakers." USA Today contains this editorial today.

The newspaper also contains an op-ed by Diane Bieri, senior vice president and general counsel of PhRMA, entitled "Let FDA do its job: Exposing drug companies to huge damages is unfair, harms patients."
Posted at 09:22 AM by Howard Bashman



"Does a Minority Religion Have a Right to Join Majority Religions in Placing Its Own Monument in a Public Park? The Supreme Court Opts to Resolve the Question." Vikram David Amar and Alan Brownstein have this essay online at FindLaw.
Posted at 09:05 AM by Howard Bashman


Thursday, April 24, 2008

"New guidelines cut sentences for 3,000 crack offenders": Lara Jakes Jordan of The Associated Press has a report that begins, "More than 3,000 crack cocaine convicts have had their prison sentences cut since the federal government eased harsh penalties for drug crimes overwhelmingly committed by blacks. A U.S. Sentencing Commission study released Thursday says it is not immediately clear how many offenders have actually been released from custody after having their sentences reduced."
Posted at 05:20 PM by Howard Bashman


"Scalia On Bush v. Gore: Get Over It! Supreme Court Justice Tells 60 Minutes It’s Nonsense To Say The Decision Was Politically Motivated." CBS News provides this report. You can view a related video segment by clicking here.

And in related coverage, The Associated Press provides a report headlined "Scalia: I'm conservative, but not biased."

This Sunday's broadcast of "60 Minutes" will feature Lesley Stahl's interview of Justice Antonin Scalia.
Posted at 04:00 PM by Howard Bashman



"How is an immigration judge to sift honest, persecuted aliens from those who are feigning?" Chief Judge Frank H. Easterbrook today issued this quite interesting ruling on behalf of a unanimous three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit.
Posted at 03:55 PM by Howard Bashman


"Court Rules Foreign Prisoners Can't Sue State": Joseph Goldstein of The New York Sun has a news update that begins, "Foreign nationals arrested in New York City but never not told of their right to communicate with their consulate can’t sue for money damages, a federal appeals court ruled this morning."

My earlier coverage of today's Second Circuit ruling appears at this link.
Posted at 03:50 PM by Howard Bashman



Former Illinois state prisoner has a blog, and -- thanks to a ruling that the Seventh Circuit issued today -- he now also has a viable RLUIPA claim against prison officials who refused to accommodate his request for a non-meat diet: You can access today's ruling of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit at this link.

In an entertaining concurring opinion that questions the value of the former prisoner's claim, Circuit Judge Terence T. Evans cites to the plaintiff's blog.
Posted at 03:48 PM by Howard Bashman



"Court spares salmon-scarfing sea lions; A federal appeals court injunction issued Wednesday says Northwest states can trap, but not kill, the animals": The Oregonian today contains this article reporting on an order that a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued late yesterday.
Posted at 02:55 PM by Howard Bashman


"Genentech Must Pay $300 Million Award, Court Rules": Bloomberg News provides a report that begins, "Genentech Inc., the world's second- largest biotechnology company, must pay $300 million to a nonprofit medical research center seeking royalty payments for genetically engineered human insulin, a California court ruled. The California Supreme Court in San Francisco today said the company didn't have to pay another $200 million in punitive damages to City of Hope National Medical Center."

Reuters reports that "Court upholds $300 mln of award against Genentech."

And The Associated Press reports that "Court cuts $200M from royalty judgment against Genentech."

You can access today's ruling of the Supreme Court of California at this link. Earlier today, I previewed the ruling in a post you can access here.
Posted at 02:24 PM by Howard Bashman



"Lawyer fears 9/11 mastermind trial will be 'insanity'": CNN.com provides a report that begins, "Prescott Prince is a small-town lawyer who has never taken a death penalty case to trial. Yet he finds himself involved in one of the biggest capital punishment cases this century: He's defending the alleged mastermind of the September 11, 2001, terror attacks, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed."

And this past Sunday's edition of The Idaho Statesman contained an article headlined "9/11 trial will test Boise attorneys; Defense team members David Nevin and Scott McKay will be ‘making sure the government plays by the rules’ in the case of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed."
Posted at 12:42 PM by Howard Bashman



Second Circuit holds that the United States' alleged violation of the obligation under Article 36 of the Vienna Convention to inform detained aliens of the prospect of consular notification and access cannot be vindicated by a private action for damages: You can access today's ruling at this link.
Posted at 11:30 AM by Howard Bashman


"Accused writer of threatening letters enters not guilty plea": The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "A man suspected of writing racially hateful letters to blacks, including U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas and New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter, pleaded not guilty in federal court Thursday."
Posted at 11:04 AM by Howard Bashman


Supreme Court of California to issue its ruling today in City of Hope Nat. Medical Center v. Genentech, Inc. At issue in the case:
When an inventor or researcher entrusts a new idea or discovery to another under an arrangement providing for the other party to develop, patent, and commercially exploit the idea or discovery in return for royalties to be paid to the inventor or researcher, does a fiduciary relationship arise between the two parties, a breach of which may support tort, and in an appropriate case punitive, damages, or should the arrangement be treated like an ordinary contractual agreement, a breach of which supports only contract and not punitive damages?
After California's highest court agreed to review the case in 2005, Bob Egelko of The San Francisco Chronicle had an article headlined "State's highest court steps in; Genentech dispute over royalties to be heard by justices."

Some additional background on the case can be accessed here and here.

Ironically, the law firm that employs the lawyers who write the "California Punitive Damages" blog represents the plaintiff seeking to uphold an award of $200 million in punitive damages in this case, showing just how difficult it is for a law firm to be anti-punitive damages all day, every day, without exception.
Posted at 10:04 AM by Howard Bashman



"Republican Senators Block Pay Discrimination Measure": This article appears today in The New York Times.

The Washington Post reports today that "Senate Republicans Block Pay Disparity Measure."

The Los Angeles Times reports that "Democrats fall short on pay discrimination bill; They fail to overturn a threatened GOP filibuster in the Senate on legislation that would allow more time for employees to file lawsuits in such cases."

And yesterday evening's broadcast of NPR's "All Things Considered" contained an audio segment entitled "Senate Debates Reversing High Court Pay Ruling" (RealPlayer required).
Posted at 09:55 AM by Howard Bashman



"Bush lawyer tangles with judge over wiretaps; Attorney won't say if Congress can limit president's power": Bob Egelko has this article today in The San Francisco Chronicle.

And The Associated Press reports that "U.S. Islamic group argues against warrantless wiretaps."
Posted at 09:48 AM by Howard Bashman



"Caseload, Marital Problems Raised as Factors in Judge's Tirade Over Courtroom Cell Phone; Attorney: Judge's case is chance for N.Y. high court to address for the first time the issue of 'judicial burnout and stress.'" law.com provides this report.

Yesterday's edition of The Buffalo News reported that "Niagara Falls judge fights to remain on bench; Restaino's attorney argues on his behalf before State Court of Appeals in Albany."

And yesterday's edition of The Niagara Gazette contained an article headlined "Restaino: Awaiting final judgment; State Court of Appeals hears final plea to keep City Court judge on bench."
Posted at 09:44 AM by Howard Bashman



"Court Hears Arguments on Burden of Proof in Age Suits": Linda Greenhouse has this article today in The New York Times.
Posted at 09:35 AM by Howard Bashman


"Would you believe?" The Associated Press reports that "Florida lawmakers debate offering a Christian license plate."

And earlier this month, The Miami Herald reported that "Officials believe new tag should contain cross; Florida lawmakers may approve a new license that includes a cross and the words 'I Believe.'"
Posted at 09:25 AM by Howard Bashman



In the current issue of The Harvard Law Record: The publication contains articles headlined "HLS Wins National Appellate Advocacy Competition" and "ATL's Lat Muses About Professional Responsibility."
Posted at 09:15 AM by Howard Bashman


"Parents of slain boy drop lawsuit against NAMBLA; Witness incompetent to testify, judge rules": Today's edition of The Boston Globe contains an article that begins, "The parents of Jeffrey Curley, the 10-year-old Cambridge boy raped and smothered by two men who lured him into a car, have dropped their federal lawsuit against a group that advocates sex between men and boys, which the parents contended had incited their son's 1997 murder."
Posted at 09:00 AM by Howard Bashman


Second Circuit allows New York City residents to remain fat and stupid, until at least next Tuesday: Today's edition of The New York Times contains an article headlined "City Order to List Calories Is Delayed for Appeal" that begins, "A federal appeals judge on Wednesday delayed the enforcement of new city rules requiring calorie counts to be posted alongside prices in some restaurants. The delay, ordered by Judge Robert A. Katzmann, is only until Tuesday, when he said a three-member panel of the Second Circuit Court of Appeals would hear oral arguments on continuing the delay. The rules had been scheduled to take effect on Saturday."
Posted at 08:52 AM by Howard Bashman


"States rushing to make room for DNA samples; Hiring, building booms precede expansion of genetic collections": This article appears today in USA Today.
Posted at 08:47 AM by Howard Bashman


"Five Decades of Fighting Over the Constitutionality of the Death Penalty: What Can We Learn from This Lengthy War?" Edward Lazarus has this essay online today at FindLaw.
Posted at 08:40 AM by Howard Bashman


"Appeals court hears debate on 'Be Happy, Not Gay' T-shirt": Earlier this month, The Daily Herald of Arlington Heights, Illinois published an article that begins, "A federal appeals court heard arguments from attorneys today that could determine whether a Neuqua Valley High School sophomore will be allowed to wear a previously banned anti-gay T-shirt at school. The expedited appeals hearing was requested because of Alexander Nuxoll's desire to wear a shirt bearing the message 'Be Happy, Not Gay' during April 28's National Day of Truth at his Naperville school. The Christian-based event follows the pro-gay National Day of Silence held this year April 25."

Late yesterday, a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit issued its decision (in typescript format) in the case. By a vote of 3-0, the panel enters a preliminary injunction allowing Nuxoll to wear the T-shirt. The majority, in an opinion by Circuit Judge Richard A. Posner in which Circuit Judge Michael S. Kanne has joined, views the issue of whether to grant a preliminary injunction as presenting a very close call. Circuit Judge Ilana Diamond Rovner, in an opinion concurring in the judgment, writes "I view this as a simple case." Judge Rovner's must-read opinion stands as a ringing endorsement of the First Amendment rights of young adults in a public school setting.

Update: Mark Walsh has this post about yesterday's ruling at "The School Law Blog" of Education Week.
Posted at 08:14 AM by Howard Bashman



Wednesday, April 23, 2008

"CIA Foresaw Interrogation Issues; Agency Considered Investigations 'Virtually Inevitable'": Thursday in The Washington Post, Dan Eggen will have an article that begins, "The CIA concluded that criminal, administrative or civil investigations stemming from harsh interrogation tactics were 'virtually inevitable,' leading the agency to seek legal support from the Justice Department, according to a CIA official's statement in court documents filed yesterday."
Posted at 10:40 PM by Howard Bashman


"Study: Late judge's court contaminated with mold; A study sought by the family of a judge who died of a lung ailment says his courtroom was contaminated with mold spores." Today in The Miami Herald, Jay Weaver has an article that begins, "A lawyer for the family of late U.S. Magistrate Theodore Klein released a critical report Tuesday that says Miami's historic federal courthouse is plagued with dangerous mold spores, citing the evidence as a basis to sue the government for his death."
Posted at 10:17 PM by Howard Bashman


Access online the transcripts of today's U.S. Supreme Court oral arguments: You can access the transcript of argument in Metropolitan Life Ins. Co. v. Glenn, No. 06-923, by clicking here.

And you can access the transcript of argument in Meacham v. Knolls Atomic Power Laboratory, No. 06-1505, by clicking here.
Posted at 07:52 PM by Howard Bashman



"SCOTUS hits primetime . . ." Dahlia Lithwick has this post at Slate's "Convictions" blog.
Posted at 07:44 PM by Howard Bashman


"Another justice sits out another case": Mark Sherman of The Associated Press provides this report.
Posted at 05:17 PM by Howard Bashman


"O'Connor Sees Ethical Deficit in Legal Profession": Josh Gerstein has this article today in The New York Sun.
Posted at 03:42 PM by Howard Bashman


"High court: Do health insurance plans have conflict of interest? MetLife withdrew the long-term disability benefits of an Ohio woman after she got better." Warren Richey has this article today in The Christian Science Monitor.
Posted at 10:57 AM by Howard Bashman


"Court allows search and seizure in Virginia case": The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "The Supreme Court has ruled that police can conduct searches and seizures of evidence after arrests that sometimes violate state law."

And at "SCOTUSblog," Lyle Denniston has a post titled "Court rules on police search."

Today's lone ruling of the U.S. Supreme Court in an argued case issued in Virginia v. Moore, No. 06-1082. Justice Antonin Scalia delivered the opinion of the Court, in which the Chief Justice and Justices John Paul Stevens, Anthony M. Kennedy, David H. Souter, Clarence Thomas, Stephen G. Breyer, and Samuel A. Alito, Jr. joined. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg issued an opinion concurring in the judgment. You can access the decision at this link and the oral argument transcript at this link.
Posted at 10:15 AM by Howard Bashman



"VA faulted in diagnosing suicide candidates": Today in The San Francisco Chronicle, Bob Egelko has an article that begins, "Former soldiers are killing themselves at three to seven times the rate of the general population and the Department of Veterans Affairs is failing to diagnose or treat them effectively, a suicide expert testified Tuesday in a lawsuit challenging the VA's mental health system."
Posted at 09:15 AM by Howard Bashman


"D.C. Circuit Tosses Out FTC's Antitrust Ruling Against Rambus": law.com provides this report on a ruling that the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit issued yesterday.
Posted at 09:14 AM by Howard Bashman


"Judge Dismisses 9/11 Suit Against Former Head of E.P.A." The New York Times contains this article today.

My earlier coverage of yesterday's Second Circuit ruling appears at this link.
Posted at 09:12 AM by Howard Bashman



"Supreme Court hears Los Angeles case on a killer's right to confront his victim; Duane Giles' lawyer says secondhand testimony that he'd threatened his ex-girlfriend wasn't admissible because the dead woman couldn't be cross-examined": David G. Savage has this article today in The Los Angeles Times.

At "SCOTUSblog," Lyle Denniston has a post titled "An old adage may not apply."

In addition, "The Confrontation Blog" has posted two (arguably partisan) accounts of yesterday's oral argument here and here.
Posted at 09:03 AM by Howard Bashman



"After Court Ruling, States to Proceed With Executions": This article appears today in The Washington Post.
Posted at 08:50 AM by Howard Bashman


"Justices Hear Case of the 'Millionaire's Amendment'": Adam Liptak has this article today in The New York Times.

Today in The Washington Post, Robert Barnes reports that "Justices Assail 'Millionaires' Amendment'; Whether Majority Will Junk Measure Is Not Yet Clear."

David G. Savage of The Los Angeles Times reports that "Supreme Court considers the 'millionaire's amendment'; The campaign finance law provision was intended to level the playing field in political races; A decision in June could affect the fall campaign."

In USA Today, Joan Biskupic reports that "Justices split over campaign financing; '02 law challenged as free speech violation."

law.com's Tony Mauro reports that "Supreme Court Justices Appear Torn Over 'Millionaires' Amendment.'"

And The Wall Street Journal contains an editorial entitled "The Millionaire Ruse."
Posted at 08:47 AM by Howard Bashman



"ACLU wins Bible lawsuit; Judge: Distribution during school hours unconstitutional." The Advocate of Baton Rouge, Louisiana today contains an article that begins, "The Tangipahoa Parish School Board violated the First Amendment by allowing Gideons International to pass out pocket Bibles to Loranger fifth-graders during school hours in May, a federal judge ruled Tuesday. Just hours after the decision became public, the School Board voted 8-0 to seek an appeal to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals."

You can view yesterday's ruling of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana at this link.
Posted at 08:37 AM by Howard Bashman



"G.O.P. Set to Block Bill Easing Limits on Pay Discrimination Suits": The New York Times today contains an article that begins, "Senate Republicans said on Tuesday that they were confident they would be able to block legislation intended to reverse a Supreme Court ruling last year that established tight time restrictions on lawsuits over pay discrimination." The newspaper also contains an editorial entitled "Pass the Fair Pay Act."

The Washington Post reports today that "White House Threatens to Veto Discrimination Bill." The newspaper also contains an editorial entitled "Fair Pay, Fair Play: The Senate should restore workers' ability to sue over pay discrimination, whenever the injustice is discovered."

And The Los Angeles Times contains an editorial entitled "Congress fights for fair pay: Proving job discrimination is tough, thanks to the Supreme Court; Lawmakers aim to change that."
Posted at 08:25 AM by Howard Bashman



"Serial killer Daniel Siebert dies of pancreatic cancer on Alabama's Death Row; Daughter of New Jersey victim says justice not served": This article appears today in The Birmingham News.

And The Associated Press reports that "Alabama death row inmate who challenged protocol dies."
Posted at 08:22 AM by Howard Bashman



"Court to hear case that could help workers claim benefits": The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "When Wanda Glenn first sought disability benefits from MetLife Inc. in 2000, she 'never in a million years' expected it would end up as a Supreme Court case. But on Wednesday, the justices will hear oral arguments in a dispute that is being closely watched by insurance companies and business groups. Depending on how the justices rule, the case could make it easier for employees to win health and disability benefit payments in court."
Posted at 08:20 AM by Howard Bashman


"Cruel and Unusual History: The Supreme Court has repeatedly ignored the barbaric history of the death penalty." Gilbert King has this op-ed today in The New York Times.
Posted at 08:07 AM by Howard Bashman


"Inmate Count in U.S. Dwarfs Other Nations'": Adam Liptak has this article today in The New York Times.
Posted at 08:05 AM by Howard Bashman


"Butt out, Judicial Qualifications Commission tells high court": Saturday's edition of The St. Petersburg Times contained an article that begins, "No court, not even the state's highest court, can intervene in the affairs of the Judicial Qualifications Commission, attorneys for the JQC said in a sharply worded brief filed Friday with the Florida Supreme Court. The JQC was responding to an unprecedented effort to get the high court to intervene and block the JQC from proceeding against 1st District Court of Appeal Judge Michael E. Allen."

You can view the court filings that are the subject of that article here and here.
Posted at 08:00 AM by Howard Bashman



"Springtime for Judges: Democrats are trying to run out the clock on Bush's nominees." This editorial appears today in The Wall Street Journal.
Posted at 07:58 AM by Howard Bashman


"How to open up our court: Justice Scalia will make a rare TV appearance -- but only to peddle his book; The Supreme Court needs to find more innovative ways to lift its cloak of secrecy." Tony Mauro has this op-ed today in USA Today.
Posted at 07:48 AM by Howard Bashman


Tuesday, April 22, 2008

"Justices Hear Campaign Finance Case": This audio segment (RealPlayer required) featuring Nina Totenberg appeared on this evening's broadcast of NPR's "All Things Considered."
Posted at 10:07 PM by Howard Bashman


A motion for reconsideration of an order denying or granting class certification, if filed more than ten days after the issuance of that order, does not extend the time for seeking interlocutory appellate review of the order: A three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit issued this ruling today.
Posted at 08:15 PM by Howard Bashman


"U.S. justices question law on self-funded candidates": James Vicini of Reuters provides this report.
Posted at 05:50 PM by Howard Bashman


"'Millionaire Amendment' in trouble?" Lyle Denniston has this post at "SCOTUSblog."

At his "Election Law" blog, Law Professor Rick Hasen has a post titled "Davis v. FEC: Splitting the Baby?"

And at "The BLT: The Blog of Legal Times," Tony Mauro has a post titled "Justice Scalia and the Price of Homes."
Posted at 05:22 PM by Howard Bashman



"Court overturns government's ruling against Rambus": The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "An appeals court on Tuesday overruled a decision by the Federal Trade Commission that Rambus Inc. violated antitrust law, sending the computer-chip designer's shares up almost 4 percent."

You can access today's ruling of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit at this link.
Posted at 02:55 PM by Howard Bashman



The Associated Press is reporting: Mark Sherman reports that "Supreme Court reviews 'millionaire's amendment.'" The U.S. Supreme Court has posted online at this link the transcript of today's oral argument in Davis v. Federal Election Comm’n, No. 07-320.

And Pete Yost reports that "Justices question use of dead woman's statements at trial." The U.S. Supreme Court has posted online at this link the transcript of today's oral argument in Giles v. California, No. 07-6053.
Posted at 02:40 PM by Howard Bashman



Better late than never? A three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit today issued an order that states, in full:
The Government's unopposed motion to amend the opinion is GRANTED. The opinion published at 451 F.3d 578 (9th Cir. 2006) is amended to delete all mentions of the name "Keith Vercauteren." Accordingly, the phrase "In September 2003, Assistant United States Attorney Keith Vercauteren ("AUSA Vercauteren") . . . " shall be amended to read, "In September 2003, an Assistant United States Attorney ("the AUSA") . . . " All subsequent references to "AUSA Vercauteren" shall be amended to read, "the AUSA."
As that order reveals, the opinion being amended today issued in 2006 (June 26, 2006, to be precise), and therefore presumably thousands of bound versions of the Federal Reporter (Third Series) permanently contain (and will continue to contain, despite today's order) Keith Vercauteren's name. Until today, however, his name had not previously appeared here at "How Appealing."
Posted at 02:35 PM by Howard Bashman


"Supreme Court - The Hottest Docket in Town; Firms Clamor to Be Among the Few To Go Before the Nation's Final Arbiter": Brent Kendall has this very interesting front page article today in The Daily Journal of California.
Posted at 12:14 PM by Howard Bashman


"NY appeals court: Whitman not liable in Sept. 11 air case." The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "Former EPA chief Christine Todd Whitman cannot be held liable for telling residents near the World Trade Center site that the air was safe to breathe after the 2001 terrorist attacks, a federal appeals court said Tuesday."

And at the blog "Wait A Second!" Stephen Bergstein has a post titled "9/11 health claim against Whitman fails."

You can access today's ruling of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit at this link.
Posted at 11:50 AM by Howard Bashman



"Laptops fair game for airport customs searches": Today in The San Francisco Chronicle, Bob Egelko has an article that begins, "Customs agents at U.S. airports don't need any evidence of wrongdoing to search the contents of passengers' laptop computers, a federal appeals court ruled Monday. Reinstating child pornography evidence against a passenger at Los Angeles International Airport, the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco said a computer is no different from a suitcase, a car or any other piece of property subject to search at an international border."

And law.com reports that "9th Circuit OKs Border Guards' Search of Traveler's Laptop."

My earlier coverage of yesterday's Ninth Circuit ruling appears at this link.
Posted at 08:54 AM by Howard Bashman



"VA stalling on care, judge told at S.F. trial": Bob Egelko has this article today in The San Francisco Chronicle.

The Los Angeles Times reports today that "Class-action suit against Veterans Affairs opens; E-mails noting high rate of veteran suicide are shown, but agency says it is doing its best to provide healthcare."

And The New York Times contains an article headlined "In Federal Suit, 2 Views of Veterans' Health Care."
Posted at 08:50 AM by Howard Bashman



"Justices Turn Down 11 Death Row Appeals": This article appears today in The New York Times.
Posted at 08:45 AM by Howard Bashman


"High Court to Hear Uranium Case; Bethesda's USEC Argues to Impose Anti-Dumping Duties on French Firm": Robert Barnes has this article today in The Washington Post.
Posted at 08:44 AM by Howard Bashman


"Detainees Allege Being Drugged, Questioned; U.S. Denies Using Injections for Coercion": The Washington Post today contains a front page article that begins, "Adel al-Nusairi remembers his first six months at Guantanamo Bay as this: hours and hours of questions, but first, a needle."
Posted at 08:37 AM by Howard Bashman


"Appellate Argument: An Artist's View." Today's edition of The New York Times contains this new installment of Adam Liptak's "Sidebar" column. It begins, "For three days last week, Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. heard arguments in a real court in Washington. Then he came to New York to preside over a fake one -- the finals of the moot court competition at Columbia Law School."
Posted at 08:34 AM by Howard Bashman


"4th Circuit Ruling Stalls Probe of Saudi Money Transfer": Joseph Goldstein has this article today in The New York Sun.

You can access at this link yesterday's non-precedential ruling of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.
Posted at 08:30 AM by Howard Bashman



"High Court Weighs Campaign Finance Amendment": This audio segment (RealPlayer required) featuring Nina Totenberg appeared on today's broadcast of NPR's "Morning Edition."

Today in The New York Sun, Josh Gerstein reports that "9 Will Hear Campaign-Finance Case."

And The Washington Post contains an editorial entitled "No Seats for Sale: The Supreme Court should uphold the 'Millionaires' Amendment' governing congressional races."
Posted at 08:12 AM by Howard Bashman



"A defendant's right to confront accusers: How far does it extend? The Supreme Court's answer could affect some murder, domestic-abuse, and child-molestation cases." Warren Richey has this article today in The Christian Science Monitor.
Posted at 08:07 AM by Howard Bashman


"Justice Thomas, Husker Helper": Tony Mauro has this post (accompanied by this photo) at "The BLT: The Blog of Legal Times."
Posted at 07:55 AM by Howard Bashman


Monday, April 21, 2008

"Supreme Court rules Internet user has right to privacy": The Newark (N.J.) Star-Ledger provides a news update that begins, "The state Supreme Court ruled today that under the New Jersey Constitution an Internet user has the right to privacy in the subscriber information maintained by the individual's Internet service provider."

And The Associated Press reports that "NJ court requires subpoena for Internet subscriber records."

You can access today's ruling of the Supreme Court of New Jersey at this link.
Posted at 04:37 PM by Howard Bashman



Access online the transcript of today's U.S. Supreme Court oral argument in Sprint Communications Co. v. APCC Services, Inc., No. 07-552: The Court has posted it at this link.

Update: The Court has now also posted online at this link the transcript of today's oral argument in Engquist v. Oregon Dept. of Agriculture, No. 07-474.
Posted at 02:45 PM by Howard Bashman



"NBC game show may prevail despite couple's lawsuit; Georgia Supreme Court says 'Deal or No Deal' is not illegal gambling": Bill Rankin of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution provides this news update.

And The Associated Press reports that "Court throws out lawsuit challenging NBC's 'Deal or No Deal.'"

You can access today's ruling of the Supreme Court of Georgia at this link.
Posted at 02:40 PM by Howard Bashman



Ninth Circuit reinstates putative class action alleging that Gerber Products Company deceptively marketed its "Fruit Juice Snacks" as healthy for children: You can access today's ruling at this link. The district court, in a ruling that the Ninth Circuit has reversed today, had granted Gerber's motion to dismiss the action for failure to state a claim.
Posted at 02:37 PM by Howard Bashman


"We must decide whether customs officers at Los Angeles International Airport may examine the electronic contents of a passenger's laptop computer without reasonable suspicion." So begins the opinion that a unanimous three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued today.

Based on that examination, the passenger was later charged with possessing and transporting child pornography. U.S. District Judge Dean D. Pregerson, however, granted the passenger's motion to suppress the evidence discovered during the examination of the laptop.

Today's Ninth Circuit ruling describes the passenger's arguments on appeal as follows:

Arnold argues that the district court was correct in concluding that reasonable suspicion was required to search his laptop at the border because it is distinguishable from other containers of documents based on its ability to store greater amounts of information and its unique role in modern life.

Arnold argues that "laptop computers are fundamentally different from traditional closed containers," and analogizes them to "homes" and the "human mind." Arnold's analogy of a laptop to a home is based on his conclusion that a laptop's capacity allows for the storage of personal documents in an amount equivalent to that stored in one's home. He argues that a laptop is like the "human mind" because of its ability to record ideas, e-mail, internet chats and web-surfing habits.

Despite the creativity of these arguments, today's Ninth Circuit ruling reverses the district court's suppression order, thereby paving the way for the child pornography prosecution to go forward.
Posted at 02:22 PM by Howard Bashman


"Court lifts stays of execution for 3 death row inmates": Mark Sherman of The Associated Press provides this report.
Posted at 12:04 PM by Howard Bashman


"Court to hear anti-dumping, sentencing cases": Lyle Denniston has this post at "SCOTUSblog."

You can access today's Order List of the U.S. Supreme Court at this link.
Posted at 10:11 AM by Howard Bashman



"Which came first: memos or torture? John Yoo's legal opinions and questions about culpability and timing." Scott Horton has this op-ed today in The Los Angeles Times.
Posted at 09:20 AM by Howard Bashman


"Guantanamo commute is a real trial; For the lawyers and others involved in the war crimes tribunal, getting there and back is increasingly difficult": Carol J. Williams has this article today in The Los Angeles Times.
Posted at 09:15 AM by Howard Bashman


"Justices to Hear Challenge of Law That Affects Self-Funded Candidates": Robert Barnes has this article today in The Washington Post.
Posted at 09:12 AM by Howard Bashman


"From DNA of Family, a Tool to Make Arrests; Privacy Advocates Say the Emerging Practice Turns Relatives Into Genetic Informants": The Washington Post contains this front page article today.
Posted at 09:10 AM by Howard Bashman


"Few Clear Wins in U.S. Anti-Terror Cases; Moving Early on Domestic Suspects Often Does Not Bring Convictions": This front page article appears today in The Washington Post.
Posted at 09:08 AM by Howard Bashman


"States of Nature: How George Bush's legal war against the environment backfired." Law Professor Jeffrey Rosen has this essay online at The New Republic.
Posted at 08:54 AM by Howard Bashman


"White House challenges release of visitor logs": The Associated Press provides this report on a case scheduled for argument today in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.
Posted at 08:37 AM by Howard Bashman


"Can murder victim's statements be used at trial?" Mark Sherman of The Associated Press provides this report.

And Law Professor Richard D. Friedman -- author of "The Confrontation Blog" -- has a preview of the case headlined "Does an Accused Forfeit the Confrontation Right by Murdering a Witness, Absent a Purpose to Render Her Unavailable?"
Posted at 08:22 AM by Howard Bashman



"Millionaires' Amendment: The Supreme Court should uphold Congress's modest effort to help candidates who rely on outside contributions get their messages out to the voters." This editorial appears today in The New York Times.
Posted at 08:15 AM by Howard Bashman


"Fieger legal team a dream; Big-time criminal attorneys known for winning high-profile cases across nation": David Ashenfelter has this article today in The Detroit Free Press.
Posted at 08:14 AM by Howard Bashman


"Neither side relishing retrial in Wecht case": This article appeared yesterday in The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
Posted at 08:12 AM by Howard Bashman


"Porteous defense says dissenting judges don't believe punishment fits the crime": One week ago today, The Times-Picayune of New Orleans published an article that begins, "The transcripts and legal opinions locked away in the judicial complaint file of U.S. District Judge Thomas Porteous are so ultra-secret that not even the embattled jurist can share the documents shielded from public view by a policy designed to protect him. When the 5th Circuit Court of Appeal recommended Porteous for impeachment in December, it released six pages describing in broad strokes the charges against him. It did not, however, allow the public to read a nearly 50-page dissent written by four judges who heard the same evidence but didn't consider the misdeeds worthy of the judiciary's ultimate punishment for misconduct on the bench. The 5th Circuit does not acknowledge that the dissent exists, but Porteous' newly hired defense team said the document contains critical arguments that it wishes it could make public."
Posted at 06:50 AM by Howard Bashman


"How the Supreme Court's Lethal Injection Ruling Elevates Appearances Over Reality": Michael C. Dorf has this essay online today at FindLaw.
Posted at 06:44 AM by Howard Bashman


"State Secrets: A government misstep in a wiretapping case." Patrick Radden Keefe has this article in the April 28, 2008 issue of The New Yorker.
Posted at 06:42 AM by Howard Bashman


Sunday, April 20, 2008

"Immunity for prosecutors: Miscarriages of justice cannot be rectified by allowing lawsuits against prosecutors." Yesterday's edition of The Los Angeles Times contained this editorial.
Posted at 11:25 PM by Howard Bashman


"DNA Tests Offer Deeper Examination Of Accused; Biological, Emotional States Scrutinized": This front page article appears today in The Washington Post.
Posted at 11:15 PM by Howard Bashman


"Self-funded candidate rule brings campaign finance to court; A part of the McCain-Feingold reform law is being contested on behalf of wealthy candidates running for Congress": Warren Richey will have this article Monday in The Christian Science Monitor.
Posted at 04:10 PM by Howard Bashman


"Military medical malpractice: Seeking recourse; Outrage over a recent spate of incidents spurs fresh efforts to overturn the Feres doctrine, a 1950 Supreme Court decision denying active-duty service members the right to sue over medical errors." This article appears today in The Los Angeles Times.
Posted at 04:05 PM by Howard Bashman


Friday, April 18, 2008

"Federal Circuit Tosses Out $104 Million Patent Verdict in DirecTV Case": law.com provides this report on a ruling that the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit issued today.
Posted at 11:04 PM by Howard Bashman


"States React to Court's Lethal Injection Ruling": This audio segment (RealPlayer required) appeared on this evening's broadcast of NPR's "All Things Considered."
Posted at 08:28 PM by Howard Bashman


Programming note: I will be in court this morning on a client matter. Additional posts will appear here this afternoon.
Posted at 07:58 AM by Howard Bashman


"Capital punishment common sense: The Supreme Court didn't end capital punishment, but it may have started the U.S. down that road." This editorial appears today in The Los Angeles Times.
Posted at 07:57 AM by Howard Bashman


"Chief Justice Weighs In at Columbia Moot Court": Joseph Goldstein has this article today in The New York Sun.

The Associated Press reports that "Chief Justice Roberts presides at Columbia moot court."

And Columbia Law School has issued this news release about the event.
Posted at 07:55 AM by Howard Bashman



"Tapes Not Part of Court Order, C.I.A. Insists": Today's edition of The New York Times contains an article that begins, "A records search by the Central Intelligence Agency has found no evidence that the agency violated a judge's order when, in 2005, it destroyed videotapes that showed harsh interrogations, the C.I.A. said in a court declaration this week."
Posted at 07:52 AM by Howard Bashman


"Professor in Deadlocked Terrorism Case Could Face a New Indictment": The New York Times today contains an article that begins, "Sami al-Arian, a computer science professor imprisoned for more than five years after pleading guilty to a single terrorism-related charge when his trial deadlocked, is back in legal limbo this week. He faces either deportation or a new indictment that could extend his incarceration for years."
Posted at 07:48 AM by Howard Bashman


"Justice Stevens Renounces Capital Punishment": Linda Greenhouse has this article today in The New York Times.
Posted at 07:45 AM by Howard Bashman


"Scalia, long shy of news media, now more open; Justice's views of law to go out to wider audience": Joan Biskupic has this article today in USA Today.
Posted at 06:45 AM by Howard Bashman


Thursday, April 17, 2008

Available online from National Public Radio: Today's broadcast of "Morning Edition" contained an audio segment entitled "Executions Poised to Resume After Court Ruling" featuring Nina Totenberg.

And today's broadcast of "All Things Considered" contained an audio segment entitled "Former CIA Official Under Investigation over Tapes."

RealPlayer is required to launch these audio segments.
Posted at 10:30 PM by Howard Bashman



"Verdict on Tennessee Plan may require a jury: For now, appellate judges are appointed; Perhaps it's time that judicial selection involved not just lawyers, but all of us." Law Professor Brian T. Fitzpatrick had this op-ed yesterday in The Memphis Commercial Appeal.
Posted at 10:23 PM by Howard Bashman


"The Justices Deliver Fuzzy Ruling: Supreme Court's 9 Judges Offer 7 (Weak) Opinions On Lethal Injection Case." CBS News legal analyst Andrew Cohen has this essay.
Posted at 10:20 PM by Howard Bashman


Two reviews of two recent books written by Seventh Circuit Judge Richard A. Posner: Today at National Review Online, Edward Whelan has an essay entitled "How Judge Posner Thinks Judges Should Think: An unpersuasive case for pragmatism." Ed's essay reviews Judge Posner's newest book, "How Judges Think." You can access a lengthy excerpt from the book by clicking here.

And in the April 2008 issue of the Michigan Law Review, Ninth Circuit Judge Stephen Reinhardt has this review of Judge Posner's book, "Not a Suicide Pact: The Constitution in a Time of National Emergency."
Posted at 04:33 PM by Howard Bashman



The Associated Press is reporting: Now available online are articles headlined "CIA: Destroyed videos likely not covered by court order" and "Wis. Supreme Court lets 'shaken baby' ruling stand."
Posted at 03:47 PM by Howard Bashman


"Case and law hinge on taped words; SJC ruling could shift wiretap limits": This article appears today in The Boston Globe.
Posted at 11:34 AM by Howard Bashman


"Wecht judge says he won't step aside; Criticizes defense attorneys and refuses to delay retrial": The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette today contains an article that begins, "The federal judge presiding in the case against Dr. Cyril H. Wecht yesterday refused to delay a retrial and said he would not recuse himself. In his order, U.S. District Judge Arthur J. Schwab also defended his conduct during the first trial while lambasting defense attorneys for theirs since the jury deadlocked last week and a mistrial was declared."

I have posted online at this link yesterday's ruling of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania.

And today in The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, Jason Cato reports that "Coalition urges end to Wecht case." You can view the group's letter at this link.
Posted at 09:15 AM by Howard Bashman



"White House backs appeal on S.F. health care": Today in The San Francisco Chronicle, Bob Egelko has an article that begins, "The Bush administration is backing restaurant owners in their challenge to San Francisco's groundbreaking health coverage program before a federal appeals court that will hear the case today."
Posted at 09:08 AM by Howard Bashman


"Supreme Court debates execution in child rape case": This article appears today in The Times-Picayune of New Orleans.

Michael Doyle of McClatchy Newspapers reports that "Supreme Court ponders death for rapists of children."

And at FindLaw, Marci Hamilton has an essay entitled "The Supreme Court Considers Whether Imposing the Death Penalty for Child Rape Is Constitutional: The Arguments For and Against the Penalty."
Posted at 08:34 AM by Howard Bashman



"Definition of rape widened; Consent can be revoked in mid-act, judges rule": The Baltimore Sun today contains an article that begins, "The state's highest court ruled yesterday that a man can be charged with rape if he ignores a woman's calls to stop - even if she had previously consented to sex. With this expansion of the legal definition of rape, Maryland joins seven other states whose courts have determined that a woman can revoke her consent after intercourse begins."

And The Washington Post reports today that "In Reversal of '06 Decision, Rape Can Be Charged if Consent Is Withdrawn."

My earlier coverage of yesterday's ruling of the Court of Appeals of Maryland appears at this link.
Posted at 08:30 AM by Howard Bashman



"U.S. to Expand Collection Of Crime Suspects' DNA; Policy Adds People Arrested but Not Convicted": This front page article appears today in The Washington Post.
Posted at 08:27 AM by Howard Bashman


"ACLU gets damages over portrait; Group also awarded fees in Slidell case": The Times-Picayune of New Orleans today contains an article that begins, "A federal judge on Wednesday agreed with the American Civil Liberties Union of Louisiana that a decision by Slidell officials to hang a portrait of Jesus on the wall at Slidell City Court was unlawful. It awarded the organization nominal damages as well as attorneys fees for its role in a lawsuit filed last summer. The ruling by U.S. District Court Judge Ivan L.R. Lemelle provides the ACLU with $1 in damages and paves the way for the ACLU to collect the fees it incurred when it sued the court, Judge Jim Lamz, the city of Slidell and St. Tammany Parish."

I have posted online at this link yesterday's ruling of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana.
Posted at 08:15 AM by Howard Bashman



"Justices Uphold Lethal Injection in Kentucky Case": Linda Greenhouse has this article today in The New York Times. Adam Liptak reports that "Challenges Remain for Lethal Injection." The newspaper also contains an editorial entitled "The Supreme Court Fine-Tunes Pain."

Today in The Washington Post, Robert Barnes has articles headlined"Justices Uphold Lethal Injection Procedure; Split Reasoning Opens Door to New Challenges" and "In Reversal, Stevens Says He Opposes Death Penalty."

In The Los Angeles Times, David G. Savage reports that "Supreme Court finds lethal injections a humane means of execution; The 7-2 ruling shows strong support for the death penalty among justices and sets a high bar for future challenges." And Maura Dolan reports that "Executions still on hold in California; The U.S. Supreme Court ruling aside, the state faces a number of legal hurdles before it can resume capital punishment."

In USA Today, Joan Biskupic reports that "Justices split hairs over death penalty case; Ky. ruling leaves room for future tests of issue." The newspaper also contains articles headlined "High court clears way to restart lethal injections" and "States move on executions; Ala., Va. could resume penalty in about a month."

Warren Richey of The Christian Science Monitor reports that "Court upholds lethal injection; The 7-to-2 ruling is expected to end a de facto moratorium on executions nationwide."

Jess Bravin of The Wall Street Journal reports that "Supreme Court Upholds Lethal Injections."

Bob Egelko of The San Francisco Chronicle reports that "Lethal injections ruled not cruel punishment."

law.com's Tony Mauro reports that "Supreme Court Upholds Kentucky's Lethal Injections; Stevens becomes first member of high court to openly oppose capital punishment since Blackmun's 1994 retirement."

The Washington Times reports that "Court upholds lethal injection."

The Louisville Courier-Journal contains an article headlined "States can resume executions after ruling; Court: Punishment isn't cruel, unusual."

The Lexington Herald-Leader reports that "Lethal injection method upheld; Kentucky inmates' appeal rejected."

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports that "Executions likely to resume soon; Governor lifts moratorium after court rejects challenge to lethal-injection method."

The Baltimore Sun reports that "Justices uphold lethal method; Republican leaders urge O'Malley to act on Md. executions."

Howard Mintz of The San Jose Mercury News reports that "Justices' decision won't end debate over lethal injection in California; Supreme Court upholds method used in state."

The Sacramento Bee reports that "Supreme Court backs death penalty, but outcome for California is unclear."

The Press-Enterprise of Riverside, California reports that "High court permits lethal injection; Supreme Court decision ends a moratorium in many states -- but not this one."

The Houston Chronicle reports that "Harris County gets ready to execute 6 killers."

The Austin American-Statesman reports that "Texas' death chamber expected to reopen quickly; High court ruling in Kentucky case upholds use of lethal injections."

The Dallas Morning News reports that "Supreme Court clears way for lethal injections to resume."

The Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports that "High court ruling sets stage for executions to resume in Texas."

The Miami Herald reports that "Death Row executions to proceed; Florida officials rushed to ramp up executions in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court ruling in a Kentucky case that upheld lethal injections."

The St. Petersburg Times reports that "U.S. Supreme Court upholds lethal injection."

The Birmingham News reports that "Alabama Attorney General Troy King says he'll move quickly to resume executions."

The Mobile Press-Register reports that "Death penalty method upheld; Alabama, other states could soon resume lethal injections after ruling by U.S. Supreme Court."

The Arizona Republic reports that "High court clears way to resume executions."

The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports that "Death penalty method upheld."

And James Oliphant of The Chicago Tribune reports that "Stevens new foe of death penalty; Senior justice voices doubt that executions act as a deterrent."
Posted at 08:07 AM by Howard Bashman



"The Democrats and Gun Control: Don't believe it when Barack and Hillary say they respect the Second Amendment." David Kopel has this op-ed today in The Wall Street Journal.
Posted at 07:55 AM by Howard Bashman


"No need for a shield: Bill would put reporters above the law, cause 'grave consequences.'" Attorney General Michael B. Mukasey has this op-ed today in USA Today.

And today in The Washington Post, columnist Robert D. Novak has an op-ed entitled "On the Shield Law, Good News and Bad."
Posted at 07:50 AM by Howard Bashman



Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Available online from National Public Radio: This evening's broadcast of "All Things Considered" contained an audio segment entitled "Justices Rule Lethal Injection Is Constitutional" featuring Nina Totenberg.

Today's broadcast of "Day to Day" contained an audio segment entitled "Supreme Court Upholds Lethal Injection" featuring Dahlia Lithwick.

And today's broadcast of "Morning Edition" contained an audio segment entitled "High Court Upholds Kentucky's Execution Injections."

RealPlayer is required to launch these audio segments.
Posted at 11:15 PM by Howard Bashman



"Supreme Court Allows Lethal Injection for Execution": Linda Greenhouse will have this article Thursday in The New York Times.
Posted at 10:07 PM by Howard Bashman


"The Capital Gang: The Supreme Court jump-starts the machinery of death." Dahlia Lithwick has this Supreme Court dispatch online at Slate.
Posted at 08:45 PM by Howard Bashman


"Top Md. court rules on sexual consent case; Rape charge can be brought if consent is withdrawn during sex, court rules": The Baltimore Sun provides a news update that begins, "The state's highest court ruled this morning that a man can be charged with rape if he ignores a woman's calls to stop -- even if she had previously consented to the sex. Maryland now joins seven other states whose courts have concluded that a woman can revoke her consent after intercourse begins. The Court of Appeals' conclusion on the controversial matter -- one paragraph of a 76-page ruling in a complex rape case from Montgomery County -- overturns existing common law and its own 1980 opinion."

You can access today's ruling of the Court of Appeals of Maryland at this link.
Posted at 08:42 PM by Howard Bashman



"Justices skeptical of challenge to La. child rape law": The Times-Picayune of New Orleans provides this news update.

And at "SCOTUSblog," Lyle Denniston has a post titled "Limit may be imposed on death penalty for child rape."
Posted at 05:25 PM by Howard Bashman



"Supreme Court allows lethal injection in executions": Michael Doyle of McClatchy Newspapers provides this report.

The Louisville Courier-Journal provides a news update headlined "High court upholds Ky. lethal injection method."

Adam Liptak of The New York Times has a news update headlined "Litigation Assured in Wake of Decision."

Maura Dolan of The Los Angeles Times has a news update headlined "California may resume executions by year's end; The Supreme Court's ruling that lethal injections can be used on inmates could speed up some proceedings in the state; California's last execution was in early 2006."

Bob Egelko of The San Francisco Chronicle has a news update headlined "High court ruling could clear way for California executions to resume."

And The Washington Post provides a news update headlined "Va. Governor Reinstates Executions After Ruling."
Posted at 05:24 PM by Howard Bashman



"Stevens declares opposition to death penalty": Mark Sherman of The Associated Press provides this report.
Posted at 03:20 PM by Howard Bashman


Two judges dissent from the First Circuit's denial of rehearing en banc to consider whether AEDPA unconstitutionally limits a federal court's ability to grant habeas relief: You can access today's order of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit denying rehearing en banc, and the dissent from that order, at this link.
Posted at 03:10 PM by Howard Bashman


Access online the transcript of today's U.S. Supreme Court oral argument in Kennedy v. Louisiana, No. 07-343: The Court has posted it online at this link.

In coverage of the oral argument, Pete Yost of The Associated Press reports that "Seemingly divided court considers death for child rapists."
Posted at 02:10 PM by Howard Bashman



"Justice Stevens Turns Against Capital Punishment": Tony Mauro has this post at "The BLT: The Blog of Legal Times."

And at "The Swamp" blog of The Chicago Tribune, James Oliphant has posts titled "Justice Stevens' change of heart" and "Court rules injection method legal."
Posted at 01:55 PM by Howard Bashman



"Should child rapists face death penalty? The high court will decide if execution for a Louisiana child rapist is constitutional." Warren Richey has this article today in The Christian Science Monitor.
Posted at 12:05 PM by Howard Bashman


"Supreme Court upholds executions by lethal injection; The decision, supported by a majority of the justices, clears the way for such methods to resume across the country": David G. Savage of The Los Angeles Times has this news update.

The Washington Post provides a news update headlined "Supreme Court Upholds Use of Lethal Injection."

Greg Stohr of Bloomberg News reports that "U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Use of Lethal Injection."

And James Vicini of Reuters reports that "Supreme court clears way for executions to resume."
Posted at 12:03 PM by Howard Bashman



The Associated Press is reporting: Mark Sherman reports that "Supreme Court upholds Kentucky's use of lethal injections."

The AP also provides articles headlined "Court rules DUI does not count as violent felony"; "Court rules in favor of prosecutors in cocaine case"; and "5 Supreme Court justices on White House guest list."
Posted at 10:33 AM by Howard Bashman



Access online today's rulings of the U.S. Supreme Court: The Court today issued three opinions in argued cases.

1. Justice Stephen G. Breyer delivered the opinion of the Court in Begay v. United States, No. 06-11543. The Chief Justice and Justices John Paul Stevens, Anthony M. Kennedy, and Ruth Bader Ginsburg joined in the opinion of the Court. Justice Antonin Scalia issued an opinion concurring in the judgment. And Justice Samuel A. Alito, Jr. issued a dissenting opinion, in which Justices David H. Souter and Clarence Thomas joined. You can access the decision at this link and the oral argument transcript at this link.

2. Justice Ginsburg delivered the opinion for a unanimous Court in Burgess v. United States, No. 06-11429. You can access the decision at this link and the oral argument transcript at this link.

3. Today's third and final opinion issued in the case of Baze v. Rees, No. 07-5439. The Chief Justice announced the judgment of the Court and delivered an opinion in which Justices Kennedy and Alito joined. Justice Alito also filed a concurring opinion. Justice Stevens filed an opinion concurring in the judgment. Justice Scalia filed an opinion concurring in the judgment, in which Justice Thomas joined. Justice Thomas also filed an opinion concurring in the judgment, in which Justice Scalia joined. Justice Breyer filed an opinion concurring in the judgment. And Justice Ginsburg filed a dissenting opinion, in which Justice Souter joined. You can access the decision at this link and the oral argument transcript at this link. And via C-SPAN, you can access the audio of this oral argument by clicking here (RealPlayer required).
Posted at 10:25 AM by Howard Bashman



"Lethal injection allowed": At "SCOTUSblog," Lyle Denniston has a post that begins, "In a widely splintered decision, the Supreme Court cleared the way for executions to resume across the country, concluding that the most common method of lethal injection does not violate the Constitution."
Posted at 10:15 AM by Howard Bashman


"Court: Drunk driving not a violent felony." Lyle Denniston has this post at "SCOTUSblog."
Posted at 10:08 AM by Howard Bashman


Available online from National Public Radio: Today's broadcast of "Morning Edition" contained an audio segment entitled "Justices Weigh Death Penalty for Child Rape" featuring Nina Totenberg.

Yesterday's broadcast of "Day to Day" contained an audio segment entitled "Supreme Court Weighs Death Penalty for Rapists" featuring Dahlia Lithwick.

And yesterday's broadcast of "Morning Edition" contained an audio segment entitled "Justices Weigh Deviation from Sentencing Guidelines" featuring Nina Totenberg.

RealPlayer is required to launch these audio segments.
Posted at 09:20 AM by Howard Bashman



"Court upholds female guard's harassment award": Today in The San Francisco Chronicle, Bob Egelko has an article that begins, "A federal appeals court has upheld $600,000 in damages to a state prison guard who said she was fired after complaining that she was being harassed by naked male inmates."

Last Friday's non-precedential ruling of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit consisted of both a majority opinion and a dissenting opinion.
Posted at 09:10 AM by Howard Bashman



"Bush, Mich. senators end fed judge fight": The Detroit News contains this article today.

And The Detroit Free Press reports today that "White House nominates 2 for courts."
Posted at 09:05 AM by Howard Bashman



"The Free Flow of Information: It's time for a vote on a federal shield law." This editorial appears today in The Washington Post.
Posted at 08:55 AM by Howard Bashman


"Praying coach is rebuffed by court; Federal appellate judges support East Brunswick": The Newark (N.J.) Star-Ledger today contains an article that begins, "A decision by East Brunswick's football coach to bow his head and kneel during student-led pre-game prayers represents an endorsement of religious activity at a public school event and the township's board of education was justified in stopping him, a federal appeals court ruled yesterday."

The New York Times reports today that "Coach in New Jersey Cannot Pray With Players."

The Home News Tribune of Neptune, New Jersey reports that "Football coach may take prayer fight higher."

And The Associated Press reports that "Court says coach can't kneel, bow head as team prays."

My earlier coverage of yesterday's Third Circuit ruling appears at this link.
Posted at 08:18 AM by Howard Bashman



"All Rise! A Centenarian Will Analyze the Supreme Court." In today's edition of The New York Times, Jim Dwyer has this installment of his "About New York" column.
Posted at 08:11 AM by Howard Bashman


"Supreme Court Restricts the Taxation of Income of Companies Based Out of State": Linda Greenhouse has this article today in The New York Times.
Posted at 08:07 AM by Howard Bashman


"The Limits of the Death Penalty": This editorial appears today in The New York Times.

Today's edition of The Washington Post contains an editorial entitled "A Crime and Its Punishment: Is the death penalty the right response to the horror of child rape?"

And The Los Angeles Times contains an editorial entitled "No death penalty for rapists: Louisiana wants to execute a child rapist; The crime is heinous, but the death penalty is too harsh."
Posted at 08:05 AM by Howard Bashman



Available online from law.com: Tony Mauro reports that "Supreme Court Sends Tax Case Back to Illinois; Also, justices rule in Clintwood Elkhorn Mining case."

Shannon P. Duffy has an article headlined "3rd Circuit: Coach's Moment of Silence Constitutes Endorsement of Religion." My earlier coverage of yesterday's Third Circuit ruling appears at this link.

And in other news, "11th Circuit Tackles Trademarks, Internet; Medical product manufacturer's use of competitor's trademarked terms in Web site's embedded information is misleading."
Posted at 07:53 AM by Howard Bashman



Tuesday, April 15, 2008

"Fieger unsuccessful in attempt for mistrial; Defense accuses prosecution of breaking gag order": The Detroit Free Press provides this news update. Today's print edition contains a related article headlined "Hunt for impartial jurors begins in Fieger's trial."

The Detroit News provides an update headlined "Judge says no to Fieger mistrial request." Today's print edition contains an article headlined "Juror pool expands in Fieger trial; District judge wants at least 40 prospective jurors to be called before seating panel of 16 by week's end."

And The Associated Press reports that "Fieger calls campaign finance case 'a joke.'"
Posted at 08:54 PM by Howard Bashman



"Bush nominates Michigan appellate judge to 6th Circuit": The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "President Bush nominated a Michigan appellate judge and a federal prosecutor to the federal bench Tuesday in a deal with the state's Democrats that will break a long impasse over judicial nominations. Bush nominated Michigan Court of Appeals Judge Helene White to serve on the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and U.S. Attorney Stephen J. Murphy of Detroit to fill the vacancy on the U.S. District Court for Michigan's Eastern District. As part of the compromise, the White House withdrew Murphy's nomination to the 6th Circuit and nominated White for that post. Murphy was then nominated to the district court seat. White, Murphy and Raymond Kethledge, a Troy, Mich., lawyer who was previously nominated to fill another vacancy on the 6th Circuit, are expected to be considered by the Senate Judiciary Committee."

And The Detroit News provides a news update headlined "U.S. Attorney in Detroit nominated to federal bench."

The White House today issued this statement of "Nominations and Withdrawal Sent to the Senate."
Posted at 08:33 PM by Howard Bashman



"Specter queries White House hopefuls on judges": The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "Republican Sen. Arlen Specter has a suggested question for Wednesday's Democratic presidential debate: Ask the candidates if they support faster confirmation of judicial nominations."
Posted at 04:40 PM by Howard Bashman


"Friends of the Supreme Court": Tony Mauro has this new post at "The BLT: The Blog of Legal Times."
Posted at 04:38 PM by Howard Bashman


Access online the transcripts of today's U.S. Supreme Court oral arguments: You can access at this link the transcript of oral argument in Greenlaw v. United States, No. 07-330.

And you can access at this link the transcript of oral argument in Irizarry v. United States, No. 06-7517.
Posted at 04:10 PM by Howard Bashman



The Associated Press is reporting: An article headlined "Canadian detainee asks US court to intervene in terror case" reports on a case argued today before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.

And in other news, "Some gay couples are having trouble obtaining divorces."
Posted at 02:35 PM by Howard Bashman



Third Circuit rejects high school football coach's constitutional challenge to East Brunswick (N.J.) School District's policy prohibiting faculty participation in student-initiated prayer: You can access today's lengthy ruling at this link. Today's decision overturns a federal district court's ruling, which had found the policy to be unconstitutional.
Posted at 02:30 PM by Howard Bashman


"Rape a child, pay with your life, Louisiana argues": Bill Mears of CNN.com provides this report.
Posted at 01:42 PM by Howard Bashman


The Associated Press is reporting: Now available online are articles headlined "Court returns tax dispute in Lexis/Nexis sale to Illinois" and "Justices: Mining firms to get only partial tax refunds."
Posted at 11:54 AM by Howard Bashman


D.C. Circuit affirms the dismissal of Jennifer Harbury's common law tort claims against various U.S. Government officials alleged to be legally responsible for the physical abuse and death of her husband during Guatemala's civil war: You can access today's ruling of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit at this link.
Posted at 11:45 AM by Howard Bashman


"Court rules on two tax cases": Lyle Denniston has this post at "SCOTUSblog."

The U.S. Supreme Court today issued a decision today in MeadWestvaco Corp. v. Illinois Dept. of Revenue, No. 06-1413. You can access the opinion at this link and the oral argument transcript at this link. Justice Samuel A. Alito, Jr. delivered the opinion for a unanimous Court, and Justice Clarence Thomas issued a concurring opinion.

And the Court today also issued a decision in United States v. Clintwood Elkhorn Mining Co., 07-308. You can access the opinion at this link and the oral argument transcript at this link. The Chief Justice delivered the opinion for a unanimous Court.
Posted at 10:15 AM by Howard Bashman



"Supreme Court to hear Los Angeles County district attorney immunity case; Justices will consider whether ex-D.A. John Van de Kamp can be sued over the conviction of Thomas L. Goldstein, who was freed after 24 years": David G. Savage has this article today in The Los Angeles Times.
Posted at 09:00 AM by Howard Bashman


In the current issue of The Harvard Law Record: The publication contains articles headlined "Judge Ginsburg Reflects on Law and Economics" and "Whelan Criticizes Approach to Judicial Nominations."
Posted at 08:58 AM by Howard Bashman


Plot to use obscure words to thwart wiretaps is foiled: Yesterday in The Providence (R.I.) Journal, Edward Fitzpatrick had an article headlined "Selya is named top judge on U.S. wiretap court" that begins, "A federal judge from Rhode Island, Bruce M. Selya, will soon be the top judge of a secretive federal court that hears appeals involving wiretaps of suspected spies and terrorists. Selya, a senior judge on the Boston-based 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, has been a member of the U.S. Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court of Review since 2005. Now, Chief Justice of the United States John G. Roberts Jr. is making Selya the court's presiding judge. The designation, which Roberts signed March 27, takes effect May 19."
Posted at 08:52 AM by Howard Bashman


"Bible quotes don't merit capital case's review": Today in The San Francisco Chronicle, Bob Egelko has an article that begins, "The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday rejected a convict's last remaining challenge to his death sentence for the murder of a student librarian at the University of Southern California in 1978, one of the oldest cases on California's Death Row."
Posted at 08:50 AM by Howard Bashman


"John McCain 'narrowly' backs law to shield journalists; His stand puts him at odds with the White House, which says protection of reporters' sources threatens national security": This article appears today in The Los Angeles Times.

USA Today reports today that "McCain, Obama back law for reporters; But secret sources can do harm, Republican says."

And The New York Sun reports that "McCain Backs Shield Law for Journalists."
Posted at 08:44 AM by Howard Bashman



"Judges, and Justice, Delayed: The Senate needs to move faster on court nominations." The Washington Post contains this editorial today.
Posted at 08:40 AM by Howard Bashman


"Lawmakers Want FBI Access to Data Curbed": This article appears today in The Washington Post.
Posted at 08:35 AM by Howard Bashman


Bloomberg News is reporting: Greg Stohr has an article headlined "Child-Rape Case at Top Court May Let States Execute Non-Killers."

And in other news, "Abortions Drop 24% as U.S. Teen Pregnancies Dropped."
Posted at 08:32 AM by Howard Bashman



"The Selling of the Judiciary: Campaign Cash 'in the Courtroom.'" Dorothy Samuels has this "Editorial Observer" essay today in The New York Times.
Posted at 08:22 AM by Howard Bashman


"The Verge of Expulsion, the Fringe of Justice": Today's installment of Adam Liptak's "Sidebar" column begins, "Federal appeals are not usually a volume business. Even fancy Manhattan firms with hundreds of lawyers seldom have more than a handful of cases pending in the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, which is known for its august history, superior judicial craftsmanship and special expertise in commercial and securities case."
Posted at 08:20 AM by Howard Bashman


"Court cuts MOVE damages; An appeals panel reduced to $150,000 the award to each of 24 homeowners who sued over rebuilding problems": This article appears today in The Philadelphia Inquirer.

And today in The Legal Intelligencer, Shannon P. Duffy reports that "MOVE Fire Verdict Slashed Again; 3rd Circuit cuts amount to $3.6 million; no ruling yet on $2.4 million in due process awards."

You can access yesterday's ruling of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit at this link.
Posted at 07:55 AM by Howard Bashman



Monday, April 14, 2008

"Gibson Dunn Helps to Shape the Supreme Court": law.com provides this report.
Posted at 11:33 PM by Howard Bashman


Linda Greenhouse is reporting: Tuesday in The New York Times, she will have articles headlined "Justices Accept Question of Prosecutors as Lawyers or Managers" and "Court Sets Fall Debate on Standards of Water Act."
Posted at 11:24 PM by Howard Bashman


"At State Level, More Attempts to Limit Guns": This article will appear Tuesday in The New York Times.
Posted at 11:20 PM by Howard Bashman


"Pre-Teen Killer Rejected by Top U.S. Court on 30-Year Sentence": Greg Stohr of Bloomberg News provides this report.
Posted at 08:44 PM by Howard Bashman


James Vicini of Reuters is reporting: He has articles headlined "Justices to hear power plant cooling water rule" and "Justices let stand youth's 30-year prison term."
Posted at 08:42 PM by Howard Bashman


Carol Rosenberg of The Miami Herald is reporting: Today she has articles headlined "Boycotting detainees create legal conundrum" and "Idaho attorneys to assist al Qaeda kingpin."
Posted at 08:40 PM by Howard Bashman


"Should child rapists be executed? Supreme Court to decide." Michael Doyle of McClatchy Newspapers provides this report.
Posted at 08:34 PM by Howard Bashman


The Associated Press is reporting: Now available online are articles headlined "Death Penalty for Child Rape Is Fought" and "Va. Justices Hear Coeducation Cases."
Posted at 03:32 PM by Howard Bashman


Access online the transcript of today's U.S. Supreme Court oral argument in Plains Commerce Bank v. Long Family Land & Cattle Co., No. 07-411: The Court has posted the transcript at this link.

And at "The BLT: The Blog of Legal Times," Tony Mauro has a related post titled "And What Would the Scalia-Alito Corporation Sell?"

Update: You can now access online at this link the transcript of today's other U.S. Supreme Court oral argument, in Bridge v. Phoenix Bond & Indemnity Co. Long Family Land & Cattle Co., No. 07-210.
Posted at 03:30 PM by Howard Bashman



"Supreme Court to hear appeal in immunity case; Los Angeles prosecutors are urging justices to overrule the 9th Circuit's decision allowing a man who was wrongly convicted of murder to sue the case supervisors": David G. Savage of The Los Angeles Times has this news update.
Posted at 03:02 PM by Howard Bashman


"Supreme Court turns down boy killer's appeal": Bill Mears of CNN.com provides this report.
Posted at 03:00 PM by Howard Bashman


"Is death fitting for rape of child? Justices to rule on whether Louisiana statute may allow execution for lesser crime than murder." James Oliphant has this article today in The Chicago Tribune.
Posted at 12:21 PM by Howard Bashman


"Court grants two cases, denies review on youth sentences": Lyle Denniston has this post at "SCOTUSblog."

And The Associated Press provides reports headlined "Court Will Hear Wrongful Conviction Case" and "Court Won't Hear Young Killer's Appeal."

You can access today's Order List of the U.S. Supreme Court at this link.
Posted at 11:48 AM by Howard Bashman



"Indecency cases stuck in legal limbo at FCC; A rebuke in federal court, a pending Supreme Court decision and broadcasters' resistance put enforcement efforts in limbo": Jim Puzzanghera has this article today in The Los Angeles Times.
Posted at 08:44 AM by Howard Bashman


"Guantanamo closure no simple prospect: The three presidential candidates have all said they'd abolish the military prison; But where would the detainees go? And what rights would they have on U.S. soil?" This article appears today in The Los Angeles Times.
Posted at 08:40 AM by Howard Bashman


"Va. Weighs Its Cap on Negligence Payments": The Washington Post today contains an article that begins, "Several Virginia legislators are questioning whether the limits on the state's liability in cases of negligence should be increased after the Virginia Tech shootings. Virginia's $100,000 limit on tort claims against the state hasn't been raised since 1993, making it one of the most restrictive caps in the nation."
Posted at 08:35 AM by Howard Bashman


"Child Rape Tests Limits Of Death Penalty; La. Law Spurs Review Of Eighth Amendment": Robert Barnes has this front page article today in The Washington Post.
Posted at 08:32 AM by Howard Bashman


"The Dangers in Pre-emption: If the perverse legal doctrine of federal pre-emption continues to spread, the public will be deprived of a vital tool for policing companies." This editorial appears today in The New York Times.
Posted at 08:22 AM by Howard Bashman


"How to Judge a Would-Be Justice": The New York Times contains this editorial today.
Posted at 08:20 AM by Howard Bashman


"States expand taking of DNA; All felony suspects fair game in some": This front page article appears today in USA Today.
Posted at 08:04 AM by Howard Bashman


Sunday, April 13, 2008

"Supreme Court Justices Turn to Ex-Clerks for Unusual Role; Former clerks tapped to make the arguments others have abandoned": law.com's Tony Mauro provides this report.
Posted at 11:33 PM by Howard Bashman


"Afghan Detainees Sent Home to Face Closed-Door Trials": The Washington Post contains this front page article today.

And The New York Times on Saturday contained an article headlined "Guantanamo Judge Is Urged to Get On With Proceedings."
Posted at 11:22 PM by Howard Bashman



"Don't keep blocking judges: A Senate logjam holding up nominations for federal judgeships has started to break, as it should." This editorial appeared Saturday in The Los Angeles Times.
Posted at 10:58 PM by Howard Bashman


"Administration Set to Use New Spy Program in U.S.; Congressional Critics Want More Assurances of Legality": Saturday's edition of The Washington Post contained this article.
Posted at 10:50 PM by Howard Bashman


"Former Ala. Governor Turns Tables on Justice Department; Siegelman Connects His Case to Accusations of Interference": This article appears today in The Washington Post.
Posted at 10:40 PM by Howard Bashman


"In Searching for New Job, Gonzales Sees No Takers": Today in The New York Times, Neil A. Lewis has an article that begins, "Alberto R. Gonzales, like many others recently unemployed, has discovered how difficult it can be to find a new job. Mr. Gonzales, the former attorney general, who was forced to resign last year, has been unable to interest law firms in adding his name to their roster, Washington lawyers and his associates said in recent interviews."
Posted at 10:20 PM by Howard Bashman


"Justices to rule if child rape can merit execution; Relative who assaulted girl, 8, faces death penalty": This article appears today in The Houston Chronicle.
Posted at 05:35 PM by Howard Bashman


"Court withdraws couple's asylum eligibility": Yesterday in The San Francisco Chronicle, Bob Egelko had an article that begins, "A federal appeals court withdrew its ruling Friday that declared a Fresno couple eligible for political asylum in the United States despite the husband's background as a guard in a Cambodian prison where inmates were allegedly persecuted."

Friday's order of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit withdrew a ruling that the Ninth Circuit issued in August 2007.
Posted at 05:34 PM by Howard Bashman



"Cantero to leave state Supreme Court": The Miami Herald yesterday contained an article that begins, "Raoul Cantero III, the first Cuban-American justice of the Florida Supreme Court, announced his resignation Friday, saying his daughter's recent illness helped persuade him and his family to move closer to their relatives back home in Miami."

And The Associated Press reports that "Florida's first Cuban-American Supreme Court Justice, Cantero, to quit."
Posted at 05:23 PM by Howard Bashman



In jurisprudence essays from Dahlia Lithwick available online at Slate: She has new essays entitled "Courting Change: Rethinking the Supreme Court press corps for a new era" and "Trend It, Don't End It: Tracking the inscrutable social consensus on capital punishment for rapists."

The second of those essays also appears in the April 21, 2008 issue of Newsweek bearing the headline "The Supreme Penalty for Rape: We are witnessing either a burgeoning new trend for executing rapists--or the last gasps of capital punishment."
Posted at 11:17 AM by Howard Bashman



"Lawsuit challenges prosecutors' immunity; The Supreme Court has been asked to rule where responsibility lies in instances of wrongful convictions": David G. Savage has this article today in The Los Angeles Times.
Posted at 11:15 AM by Howard Bashman


"Court to consider death penalty for child rape": James Vicini of Reuters provides this report.
Posted at 11:12 AM by Howard Bashman


Friday, April 11, 2008

Federal Circuit decides appeal in a lawsuit involving alleged patent infringement of anti-virus software: You can access today's ruling at this link.
Posted at 04:55 PM by Howard Bashman


The Associated Press is reporting: Now available online are articles headlined "US Court Denies Dish Patent Appeal" and "New 'Friendly Fire' Theory in Gitmo Case."
Posted at 04:54 PM by Howard Bashman


Unanimous three-judge Fifth Circuit panel returns Carl Wayne Buntion to Texas's death row, finding that the trial judge's behavior -- which led to the imposition of discipline -- did not rise to the level of bias deserving of remedy under the AEDPA: You can access today's ruling of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit at this link.

On May 2, 2006, Harvey Rice of The Houston Chronicle had an article headlined "Judge overturns conviction of man who killed officer; He says there was a 'vocal bias' against defendant" reporting on the federal district court's ruling. That same day, Tom Kirkendall, at his "Houston's Clear Thinkers" blog, had a post titled "The ugly case of Carl Wayne Buntion." Tom's post provides access to the federal district court's ruling. And the ABC News affiliate KTRK in Houston reported in late April 2006 that "Admitted cop killer on death row could get new trial or go free."
Posted at 04:25 PM by Howard Bashman



"Scalia: Church, state not always separate." This article appears today in The Daily Progress of Charlottesville, Virginia.

The Hook reports that "Scalia talks church and state at UVA."

And The Associated Press reports that "Justice Scalia says rule-making judges should yield to Constitution."

Justice Antonin Scalia was at the University of Virginia yesterday to receive the 2008 Thomas Jefferson Foundation Medal in Law.
Posted at 09:22 AM by Howard Bashman



"Third detainee snubs trial, fires lawyer; A third terrorism defendant fired his lawyer and refused to offer a defense against al Qaeda conspiracy charges": Carol Rosenberg has this article today in The Miami Herald.

Today in The Los Angeles Times, Carol J. Williams reports that "3rd Guantanamo detainee to boycott trial; The prisoner says that his only crime is being Sudanese and that the 9/11 attacks exposed U.S. 'hypocrisy.'"

And The New York Times reports that "U.S. Detainee Says He’ll Boycott His Trial."
Posted at 09:14 AM by Howard Bashman



"Pentagon delays report on FBI role in detainee abuse": Marisa Taylor of McClatchy Newspapers provides this report.
Posted at 09:10 AM by Howard Bashman


"What's a Secret? The attorney general balks at a reasonable check on a power of the executive branch." This editorial appears today in The Washington Post.
Posted at 09:07 AM by Howard Bashman


"Mukasey Distances Himself From a Memo on Searches": The New York Times contains this article today.

The Washington Post reports today that "Constitutional Exception Not Valid, Mukasey Says."

And Bob Egelko of The San Francisco Chronicle reports that "Mukasey asked to explain terror call remarks."
Posted at 09:00 AM by Howard Bashman



"Judge sues for pay raises; State's top jurist says lack of salary hikes violates constitution": This article appears today in The Times Union of Albany, New York.

The New York Times reports today that "New York's Top Judge Sues Over Judicial Pay."

And in The New York Sun, Joseph Goldstein reports that "Judges Go To Court for Higher Pay; It's a Conflict of Dignity, a Lawyer Says." The newspaper also contains an editorial entitled "Judge Sues for a Raise."
Posted at 08:45 AM by Howard Bashman



"Justices back hockey team on injury suit": The Newark (N.J.) Star-Ledger today contains an article that begins, "Ruling against a Mercer County woman who was struck in the forehead by a ricocheting puck while in the stands during a warm-up before a Trenton Titans' hockey game in 2003, the state Supreme Court said yesterday a spectator assumes some risk attending a sports event."

My earlier coverage of yesterday's New Jersey Supreme Court ruling appears at this link.
Posted at 08:28 AM by Howard Bashman



"Prison Trauma: The epitome of cruel and unusual punishment." Emily Bazelon has this jurisprudence essay online at Slate.

My earlier coverage appears at this link.
Posted at 08:20 AM by Howard Bashman



"Are Courts the Right Place to Address Large-Scale Corporate Wrongdoing? The 'Light' Cigarette Case as an Example of the Limits of Law." Edward Lazarus has this essay online today at FindLaw.
Posted at 08:15 AM by Howard Bashman


"Federal Circuit's Chief Judge Criticizes Stumbling Patent Reform Effort": Lawrence Hurley has this front page article today in The Daily Journal of California.
Posted at 08:05 AM by Howard Bashman


Thursday, April 10, 2008

"Law Firms Help Clinics Get Students to Supreme Court; Budding lawyers don't have to wait for a shot at the high court": The National Law Journal provides this report.

And the University of Texas at Austin today issued a news release headlined "Supreme Court Clinic at The University of Texas School of Law to Represent Members of South Dakota Tribe at U.S. Supreme Court."
Posted at 11:17 PM by Howard Bashman



"FBI Spent Years Looking for Threat Maker": The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "Authorities searched for years for the source of racially hateful letters, including one threatening to blow up the U.S. Supreme Court, before charging a suburban Cleveland man this week."

My earlier coverage appears at this link.
Posted at 11:12 PM by Howard Bashman



"Time running out in fight for embryos; Would-be mom asks U.S. Supreme Court to reconsider and hear her arguments": This article appears today in The Houston Chronicle.
Posted at 11:07 PM by Howard Bashman


"Senate approves Texan for appeals court": The Associated Press has a report that begins, "The Senate has given Dallas lawyer Catharina Haynes its approval to serve on the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Haynes won confirmation on a voice vote Thursday to the appellate court that takes cases from Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi. She was nominated by President Bush on July 17."

CQ Today reports that "Senate Tiff Over Judges Gets Personal."

And The Hill reports that "Fight over judges could stall patent bill."
Posted at 10:30 PM by Howard Bashman



"Jim Ho Replaces Ted Cruz as Texas SG": David Lat has this post at "Above the Law." And you can view the official press release from the Attorney General of Texas at this link.
Posted at 08:37 PM by Howard Bashman


"Chief Judge Sues for Boost in Judicial Pay": Joseph Goldstein of The New York Sun has a news update that begins, "Chief Judge Judith Kaye is filing a lawsuit today seeking a pay raise for all state judges, a court official told The New York Sun."

And The Associated Press reports that "NY's chief judge is suing state over NY judges' pay."

Via Eric Turkewitz's "New York Personal Injury Law Blog," you can access the summons and complaint at this link.
Posted at 02:35 PM by Howard Bashman



By a vote of 4-3, the Supreme Court of New Jersey rules against the claim of a woman who sued for damages after being injured by a hockey puck that entered the stands during the warm-up preceding a professional hockey game: You can access today's ruling at this link.
Posted at 10:15 AM by Howard Bashman


"Starcher cancels hearing on recusal; Court denies Massey petition to bar action": The Charleston (W. Va.) Gazette today contains an article that begins, "State Supreme Court Justice Larry Starcher canceled a public hearing scheduled for today on whether he should recuse himself from a multimillion-dollar appeal involving Massey Energy. Wednesday's cancellation came after the court voted 5-0 to deny a petition by Massey to prevent Starcher from holding the hearing. The two actions - the denial of the Massey petition and Starcher's cancellation of the hearing - were announced in the same order from the court."
Posted at 08:54 AM by Howard Bashman


"High court won't reconsider electrocution ruling": The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "The Nebraska Supreme Court on Wednesday refused to reconsider its decision that electrocution is unconstitutional." According to the article, the Attorney General of Nebraska now plans to ask the U.S. Supreme Court to hold that using the electric chair to conduct executions is not cruel and unusual punishment.
Posted at 08:50 AM by Howard Bashman


"Ohio Supreme Court justices weigh gun ordinances for cities": Jim Provance has this article today in The Toledo Blade.

And The Columbus Dispatch reports today that "Limits on guns in parks argued."
Posted at 08:47 AM by Howard Bashman



"Judge's surprise retirement leaves 'serious void'; Mr. Justice Michel Bastarache, 59, to step down June 30; replacement from Atlantic provinces is likely": The Toronto Globe and Mail today contains an article that begins, "One of the Supreme Court of Canada's most senior and prolific judges, Mr. Justice Michel Bastarache, shocked the legal world yesterday by announcing his impending retirement at the end of the court's spring session in June."

The Toronto Star reports today that "Supreme Court loses its expert on languages; After Bastarache retires, Harper has second opportunity to name a judge to top court following new nomination procedure."

The Daily Gleaner of Fredericton, New Brunswick reports that "N.B. man to step down from Supreme Court."

And Bloomberg News reports that "Canadian Supreme Court Justice Bastarache to Retire This Year."
Posted at 08:44 AM by Howard Bashman



"With a Book Coming Out, Scalia Is All Talk -- Even With the Media": Robert Barnes has this article today in The Washington Post.

Yesterday, as I previously noted in this post, Justice Antonin Scalia appeared live on C-SPAN to answer the questions of a group of high school students. You can view the appearance by clicking here (RealPlayer required).
Posted at 08:24 AM by Howard Bashman



"Afghans Hold Secret Trials for Men That U.S. Detained": This article appears today in The New York Times.
Posted at 08:12 AM by Howard Bashman


"Man indicted for making threats to Justice Clarence Thomas": CNN.com provides this report.

And The Associated Press provides a report headlined "Feds: Man Threatens Black Celebrities."

The United States Attorney's Office for the Northern District of Ohio issued this news release and has posted online the indictment.
Posted at 08:08 AM by Howard Bashman



Wednesday, April 09, 2008

"Court Tosses Suit Over School Speech": The Associated Press provides this report.

My earlier coverage of today's Sixth Circuit ruling appears at this link.
Posted at 11:40 PM by Howard Bashman



Available online from law.com: Shannon P. Duffy reports that "$412 Million in Attorney Fees Awarded to Plaintiffs Lawyers in Fen-Phen Litigation."

And in other news, "Bush Lawyers Seek the Next Soft Landing; While some Bush lawyers nab law firm jobs, others eye options."
Posted at 11:37 PM by Howard Bashman



"S.F. ban on handguns dealt a final defeat": Bob Egelko of The San Francisco Chronicle has a news update that begins, "The state Supreme Court dealt a final blow Wednesday to San Francisco's voter-approved ban on handguns, rejecting the city's appeal of a lower-court ruling that sharply limited the ability of localities to regulate firearms."
Posted at 11:32 PM by Howard Bashman


"Memo Proves Detention Is Illegal, Attorneys Say": The Washington Post today contains an article that begins, "An accused 'enemy combatant' told an appellate court yesterday that a controversial Justice Department memorandum exploring the legal boundaries of military interrogations proves that his detention was illegal."

Yesterday, "SCOTUSblog" posted the court filing at this link.
Posted at 11:08 PM by Howard Bashman



"New Roadblocks Delay Tribunals at Guantanamo": This article will appear Thursday in The New York Times.

Carol Rosenberg of The Miami Herald has a news update headlined "Saudi terror suspect: Military trials a 'sham.'"

And Carol J. Williams of The Los Angeles Times provides a news update headlined "Guantanamo prisoner denounces war-crime trial; The brother-in-law of a 9/11 hijacker tells a military judge that the terror conspiracy case against him is a sham and has himself removed from the courtroom."
Posted at 10:55 PM by Howard Bashman



"Majority thought Wecht was innocent, juror says": Jason Cato has this article today in The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.

Today's edition of The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette contains articles headlined "Many questions surround Wecht retrial, set for May" and "Wecht supporters criticize prosecution decision to retry."

And The New York Times today contains an article headlined "Hung Jury in Case of Noted Coroner, but He'll Be Retried."
Posted at 10:48 PM by Howard Bashman



"Set to Return, Chief Justice Creates a Test for Pakistan": This article appears today in The New York Times.
Posted at 10:40 PM by Howard Bashman


Over the dissent of seven judges, Ninth Circuit rejects rehearing en banc of decision immunizing from prosecution under 18 U.S.C. sec. 1001 false statements made by a criminal defendant to a probation officer preparing that defendant's presentence report: You can access today's order denying rehearing en banc, accompanied by a concurrence and two dissents, by clicking here.

My coverage of the original divided three-judge panel's ruling, from July 2007, appears at this link.
Posted at 06:15 PM by Howard Bashman



Federal Circuit rejects claim for overtime pay sought by federal Bureau of Prisons employees: You can access today's ruling at this link.
Posted at 06:10 PM by Howard Bashman


"In a wide-ranging discussion with seniors from the Thomas Jefferson High School in Alexandria, VA, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia reiterates his opposition to cameras in the U.S. Supreme Court": C-SPAN has made available for on-demand viewing (click here; RealPlayer required) today's appearance by Justice Antonin Scalia as part of that network's "Students and Leaders" program.

Joan Biskupic of USA Today provides a news update headlined "Scalia tells students he kept 'nose to the grindstone.'"

And at "The Swamp" blog of The Chicago Tribune, James Oliphant has a post titled "No to cameras, yes to '60 Minutes.'"
Posted at 06:01 PM by Howard Bashman



Seventh Circuit holds that Arthur Andersen is not entitled to insurance coverage for lawsuits brought by retirees seeking to enforce pension benefit rights: Chief Judge Frank H. Easterbrook issued this decision today on behalf of a unanimous three-judge panel.
Posted at 05:54 PM by Howard Bashman


"Ky. District Wins Challenge to Anti-Harassment Policy": Mark Walsh has this post today at "The School Law Blog" of Education Week.

Today's ruling of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, by a 2-1 margin, reaches an opposite result from the one that the same three-judge panel reached in the same case, by a 2-1 margin, in October 2007. My coverage of the October 2007 ruling can be accessed here. On panel rehearing, a U.S. District Judge sitting by designation changed his mind regarding the outcome of the case.
Posted at 05:17 PM by Howard Bashman



Programming note: I will be in court this morning on a client matter. Additional posts will appear here this afternoon.
Posted at 07:48 AM by Howard Bashman


"Supreme Court Muni-Bond Delay Has Lawyers, Markets Puzzling": Greg Stohr of Bloomberg News provides this report.
Posted at 07:34 AM by Howard Bashman


"Appellate ruling favors drug firms in lawsuits": The Philadelphia Inquirer today contains a front page article that begins, " federal appeals panel in Philadelphia backed the pharmaceutical industry's arguments yesterday that it should be insulated from certain lawsuits. The 2-1 opinion said drugmakers could not be blamed for the suicides of two people on antidepressants whose families claimed that the drug's warning labels were not strong enough. While narrowly written, the decision was a clear victory for drugmakers and Bush administration officials, who want scientists at the Food and Drug Administration, not lay juries, deciding what drug labels should say. Lawyers for the plaintiffs countered that the FDA was outgunned and poorly funded at best and that lawsuits represented an important check on the system and a last attempt for injured victims to get redress."

My earlier coverage of yesterday's Third Circuit ruling appears at this link.
Posted at 07:33 AM by Howard Bashman



Tuesday, April 08, 2008

"State Supreme Court sides with insurance companies": The Times-Picayune of New Orleans provides a news update that begins, "The Louisiana Supreme Court on Tuesday rejected arguments that homeowner insurance policies should have covered damages caused by levee breaches during Hurricane Katrina, saying the disaster clearly involved a 'flood' not covered by such policies."

And Reuters reports that "Louisiana Supreme Court upholds Katrina flood exclusions."

You can access today's ruling of the Supreme Court of Louisiana at this link.
Posted at 11:42 PM by Howard Bashman



"State Supreme Court questions charges filed against judge's opinion": The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "The Florida Supreme Court has asked a judicial panel to explain why it filed ethics charges, apparently for the first time in the state's history, against a judge because of what he wrote in an opinion."

My most recent earlier coverage appears at this link.
Posted at 11:35 PM by Howard Bashman



"Barzee meds on hold until U.S. Supreme Court weighs in": The Salt Lake Tribune contains this article today.

And The Deseret Morning News reports today that "Court extends stay on medicating Barzee."
Posted at 11:30 PM by Howard Bashman



"Kansas Supreme Court hears arguments about grand jury's bid for abortion provider's records": This article will appear Wednesday in The Kansas City Star.
Posted at 11:27 PM by Howard Bashman


Available online from law.com: Shannon P. Duffy reports that "Suicide Warning Suits Pre-Empted; Makers of Paxil, Zoloft Win." My earlier coverage of today's Third Circuit ruling appears at this link.

In other news, "9th Circuit Judges Blast Order Barring ADA Lawyer." My earlier coverage of yesterday's Ninth Circuit denial of rehearing en banc appears at this link.

And Carl W. Hittinger and Jarod M. Bona have an essay entitled "Recent High Court Rulings Don't Deserve 'Pro-Business' Label."
Posted at 11:12 PM by Howard Bashman



"As many crack convicts are freed early, will crime rise? Of the 19,500 drug offenders eligible over the next 30 years to apply for early release, 3,417 have had their sentences reduced as of Monday." This article will appear Wednesday in The Christian Science Monitor.
Posted at 11:07 PM by Howard Bashman


"Congress Considers Federal Shield Law": This audio segment (RealPlayer required) featuring Toni Locy and Matt Cooper appeared on today's broadcast of NPR's "Talk of the Nation."
Posted at 11:02 PM by Howard Bashman


"Record Shopping: The antiquated Kansas law that abortion opponents are using to pry into women's medical histories." Emily Bazelon has this jurisprudence essay online at Slate.
Posted at 10:22 PM by Howard Bashman


"Mistrial declared in Wecht case; new trial set for May 27": The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette provides a news update that begins, "The jury in the public corruption trial of former Allegheny County Coroner Cyril Wecht has failed to reach a verdict on any of the federal charges against him, and a judge today declared a mistrial. U.S. District Judge Arthur Schwab made the announcement at 9:25 a.m. today after the jury told him it remained hopelessly deadlocked following 10 days of deliberations. The government immediately announced it would try the case again and Judge Schwab set May 27 for the start of a new trial."

And Jason Cato of The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review provides a news update headlined "Wecht trial over; feds to try again."
Posted at 03:20 PM by Howard Bashman



"Scalia to Plug Book on '60 Minutes'": Mark Sherman of The Associated Press provides this report.
Posted at 02:57 PM by Howard Bashman


"[I]f we know both the probability of a fatal accident and the benefit that a person would demand to bear it we can estimate a value of life and use that value to calculate damages in wrongful death cases." Circuit Judge Richard A. Posner, on behalf of a unanimous three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, issued this decision today in a medical malpractice-wrongful death case.
Posted at 02:05 PM by Howard Bashman


"Santeria Rights Defended": The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty today issued a news release that begins, "An appeal was filed against the city of Euless, Texas, today by the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, which represents Jose Merced, a Santeria priest. Merced is seeking the right to practice his religion, which includes animal sacrifice. The appeal is to the federal Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans."
Posted at 12:32 PM by Howard Bashman


In today's mail: A review copy of Seventh Circuit Judge Richard A. Posner's new book, "How Judges Think." I'm really looking forward to reading this.
Posted at 12:17 PM by Howard Bashman


Divided three-judge Third Circuit panel issues FDA preemption ruling in cases alleging a failure to warn of increased risk of suicide for patients taking Paxil or Zoloft: By a vote of 2-1, today's ruling (in which a visiting judge provides the deciding vote) holds that the plaintiffs' state law claims are preempted by federal law. Because the decision is not yet available over the Third Circuit's web site, I have posted the ruling at this link. [Update: The Third Circuit has now posted its decision here.]

After this case was argued in December 2007, Shannon P. Duffy of The Legal Intelligencer had an article headlined "Pre-emption Issue Weighed in Label Cases; 3rd Circuit hears arguments on antidepressant warnings."
Posted at 11:55 AM by Howard Bashman



"Ten Commandments back in court: The Supreme Court will consider whether putting them in a park means giving other religions a place in the sun too." The Los Angeles Times contains this editorial today.
Posted at 10:58 AM by Howard Bashman


"UT sued for considering race in admissions; Rejected student, who is white, contends university discriminated": This article appears today in The Austin American-Statesman.

The Houston Chronicle reports today that "White teen sues UT over admissions policy; Sugar Land student, in top of class, challenges racial preferences."

And The Daily Texan reports that "UT faces suit for use of race in admissions."

My earlier coverage of the lawsuit, filed yesterday, appears at this link.
Posted at 10:22 AM by Howard Bashman



"Scalia Goes on '60 Minutes' - Voluntarily": This morning at "The BLT: The Blog of Legal Times," Tony Mauro has a post that begins, "We've just confirmed an extraordinary bit of news from an unimpeachable but anonymous source: Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia will be featured on the CBS News show '60 Minutes' April 27 in connection with the publication the next day of the new book he has co-authored, called Making Your Case: The Art of Persuading Judges."
Posted at 09:48 AM by Howard Bashman


"At Justice, New Pressure To Release Documents": This article appears today in The Washington Post.
Posted at 08:28 AM by Howard Bashman


"Facebook Reportedly Near Accord Over Origin": The New York Times today contains an article that begins, "Facebook may soon close an uncomfortable chapter in its brief history: a legal dispute over its origins."

And The Harvard Crimson reports today that "Facebook Lawsuit To Come To End."

As I previously noted in this post, last week the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit issued this decision in that lawsuit.
Posted at 08:25 AM by Howard Bashman



"Challenges Arise to Border Fence Project": Today in The New York Times, Adam Liptak has this new installment of his "Sidebar" column.
Posted at 08:17 AM by Howard Bashman


"Alleged 9/11 plotters get military attorneys": Carol Rosenberg has this article today in The Miami Herald.
Posted at 08:14 AM by Howard Bashman


"Wecht waits another day": Today in The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, Jason Cato has an article that begins, "On one of the warmest days of the year, with PNC Park packed for the Pirates home-opener, jurors in Dr. Cyril H. Wecht's federal public corruption trial called it a day before lunch. The six women and five men, who have told the judge they are hopelessly deadlocked, met Monday from 8 a.m. until 11:55 a.m. before deciding that Wecht, the former Allegheny County coroner, will have to wait at least one more day before learning his fate. The jurors will resume deliberations this morning."
Posted at 08:07 AM by Howard Bashman


Available online from law.com: An article reports that "In Long-Awaited Ruling, Calif. High Court Sends Medical Leave Case Back." You can access yesterday's ruling of the Supreme Court of California at this link.

And today's installment of my "On Appeal" column is headlined "Dissent Without Limits: Can You Vote Against Something That You Can't Vote For?"
Posted at 08:02 AM by Howard Bashman



"The law according to Justice Scalia": Edward Fitzpatrick has this article today in The Providence (R.I.) Journal.
Posted at 07:58 AM by Howard Bashman


"High court considers death penalty in child rape; Man convicted of raping 8-year-old stepdaughter": Joan Biskupic has this article today in USA Today.
Posted at 07:50 AM by Howard Bashman


"The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit Deals a Severe Blow to the Plaintiffs in a Class Action Involving Allegations of Fraud Relating to 'Lights' Cigarettes": Anthony J. Sebok has this essay online today at FindLaw.
Posted at 07:40 AM by Howard Bashman


Monday, April 07, 2008

"Scalia: Court confirmation process has changed." The Providence (R.I.) Journal provides this news update.

And The Associated Press reports that "Scalia says he'd have difficulty winning confirmation now."

Elsewhere, Broadcasting & Cable reports that "Scalia to Appear on Camera for C-SPAN; Supreme Court Justice to Make Rare On-Camera Appearance for Cable Public-Affairs Network’s Students and Leaders Series."
Posted at 08:54 PM by Howard Bashman



Lawsuit filed in federal court alleging that the University of Texas at Austin unlawfully uses race in admissions decisions to fill the remainder of its incoming freshman classes after applying Texas's "top ten percent" law: I have posted online at this link a copy of the complaint filed today initiating suit in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas. The plaintiff is a Caucasian woman who, at the time of her application to UT Austin, ranked in the top twelve percent of her high school class.

Please note: I have corrected the title of this post to more accurately reflect the claim being asserted in the lawsuit.

Update: "The lowdown on higher education" blog of The Austin American-Statesman has a post titled "UT sued for considering race in admissions."

And The Associated Press reports that "Federal lawsuit filed over UT race-based admissions policies."
Posted at 04:45 PM by Howard Bashman



Nine Ninth Circuit judges dissent from the denial of rehearing en banc in case where a district court entered an order declaring the plaintiff a vexatious litigant and requiring him to obtain leave of the court before filing another similar action in the Central District of California: You can access today's dissents from the denial of rehearing en banc at this link. Last August, a unanimous three-judge Ninth Circuit panel issued a decision affirming the so-called "pre-filing order."
Posted at 04:37 PM by Howard Bashman


In the latest installment of Ballard v. Commissioner, the Eleventh Circuit orders reinstated the findings of the tax court's special trial judge in favor of the taxpayers: You can access today's ruling of a unanimous three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit at this link.

The U.S. Supreme Court issued a ruling in this case in March 2005.
Posted at 04:24 PM by Howard Bashman



"Court OKs enhanced sentence legislation": The Honolulu Advertiser today contains an article that begins, "The Hawai'i Supreme Court has approved a new state law, passed by the Legislature in special session last year, that changes procedures for imposition of 'enhanced' sentences of criminals identified as dangers to the community."

Last week's ruling of the Supreme Court of Hawaii consists of a majority opinion; an opinion concurring and dissenting; and a dissenting opinion.
Posted at 11:40 AM by Howard Bashman



"Alaska organization weighs in on Supreme Court gun decision": This article appears today in The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner.

And today in The Scotsman, Stephen McGinty has an op-ed entitled "Gunning for the right to bear arms."

Finally, in somewhat related news, The Toledo Blade today contains an article headlined "Concealed carry: Ohio justices to enter fray over gun laws; High court to decide home-rule authority." The case is scheduled to be argued Wednesday before the Supreme Court of Ohio. That court's own preview of the case is headlined "Does State 'Concealed Carry' Law Preempt Local Ordinance Banning Weapons In City Parks?"
Posted at 11:03 AM by Howard Bashman



"Motorists who paid abusive driver fines to be offered refunds": The Virginian-Pilot today contains an article that begins, "The Virginia Supreme Court will send letters this week to some of South Hampton Roads' worst drivers, offering them refunds for drunken- and reckless-driving fees."
Posted at 10:57 AM by Howard Bashman


"Expert who changed mind claims immunity, but plaintiffs still sue": American Medical News, a publication of the American Medical Association, provides this report on a case that produced a ruling from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit last month.
Posted at 10:55 AM by Howard Bashman


"Costco, Kinko's Battle Trial Lawyers Over Credit-Card Receipts": Cynthia Cotts of Bloomberg News has a report that begins, "Costco Wholesale Corp., FedEx Corp.'s Kinko's unit and scores of other retail companies are under siege by lawyers pursuing them for billions of dollars in damages through a new federal identity-theft law. Lawyers are filing suits that put retailers at such financial risk, to the point of threatening bankruptcy, that some judges are refusing to certify them as class actions."

According to the article, one such case is now pending on appeal before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
Posted at 10:34 AM by Howard Bashman



"Blawg Review #154": Posted today, at ""HealthBlawg."
Posted at 08:52 AM by Howard Bashman


"Judge strips Texas of its 'pole tax'; The Legislature's imposition of a $5-per-patron fee on strip clubs is declared unconstitutional": The Los Angeles Times contains this article today.
Posted at 08:50 AM by Howard Bashman


"Could a hung jury force second Wecht trial?" This article appears today in The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

And yesterday in The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, Jason Cato reported that "Cost of Wecht's case put at $204,000."
Posted at 08:47 AM by Howard Bashman



"Obama's Second-Amendment Dance": Columnist Robert D. Novak has this op-ed today in The Washington Post.
Posted at 08:44 AM by Howard Bashman


"Judge asks state's high court to block case against him": Last Wednesday, The St. Petersburg Times published an article that begins, "Attorneys for 1st District Court of Appeal Judge Michael E. Allen on Tuesday asked the Florida Supreme Court to block the Judicial Qualifications Commission from proceeding against him. It marks the first time a judge has asked the high court to step in and stop the JQC. Allen's attorney, Bruce Rogow, said the unprecedented step is called for because what the JQC is doing to Allen itself is unprecedented."

And The News-Press of Fort Myers, Florida reported last week that "Judge asks state justices to throw out disciplinary proceeding."

You can access the judge's Quo Warranto Petition, filed last Tuesday in the Supreme Court of Florida, at this link. And on Friday of last week, Florida's highest court ordered that a response be filed.

I discussed this case in the May 14, 2007 installment of my "On Appeal" column for law.com, headlined "When Should a Judge Face Discipline for What an Opinion Says?"
Posted at 08:34 AM by Howard Bashman



"Another Test for Habeas Corpus: Supreme Court justices should rule that two American civilians held in Iraq have a right to review by a United States court." This editorial appears today in The New York Times.
Posted at 08:17 AM by Howard Bashman


"The School Crotch Inspector: Fighting the Advil menace, one strip search at a time." Jacob Sullum has this essay online at Reason. Sullum's essay focuses on a decision that a divided three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued last September. My earlier coverage of that ruling appears at this link.

The case was reargued before an eleven-judge en banc Ninth Circuit panel late last month. You can access the en banc oral argument audio via this link (9.27MB Windows Media audio file).
Posted at 08:07 AM by Howard Bashman



"Yoonited States of America: The Bush 'torture memo' released this week is getting a lot of attention--but for the wrong reasons." Benjamin Wittes has this essay online at The New Republic.
Posted at 08:00 AM by Howard Bashman


"Kansas Court Weighs Health Records in Abortion Case": This audio segment (RealPlayer required) appeared on today's broadcast of NPR's "Morning Edition."

And The Lawrence Journal-World reports today that "Half of Kansas abortions on visitors; Many women cross state line for procedure, especially in late term."
Posted at 07:58 AM by Howard Bashman



"Ohio's Lethal Injection Rules Questioned": The Associated Press provides this report.
Posted at 07:50 AM by Howard Bashman


"Neutrality and Justice": This editorial, which begins with a quote from a Ninth Circuit opinion, appears today in The New York Sun.
Posted at 07:44 AM by Howard Bashman


"A Small Religion Brings a Big First Amendment Question to the Supreme Court: When Does Private Religious Speech Become Government Speech?" Michael C. Dorf has this essay online today at FindLaw.
Posted at 07:40 AM by Howard Bashman


"Camp Justice: Everyone wants to close Guantanamo, but what will happen to the detainees?" Jeffrey Toobin has this Annals of Law article in the April 14, 2008 issue of The New Yorker.
Posted at 07:35 AM by Howard Bashman


Sunday, April 06, 2008

"Permissible Assaults Cited in Graphic Detail; Drugging Detainees Is Among Techniques": Today in The Washington Post, Dan Eggen has an article that begins, "Thirty pages into a memorandum discussing the legal boundaries of military interrogations in 2003, senior Justice Department lawyer John C. Yoo tackled a question not often asked by American policymakers: Could the president, if he desired, have a prisoner's eyes poked out?"
Posted at 10:54 PM by Howard Bashman


"Supreme Court to hear appeal in libel case": The Ottawa Citizen on Thursday contained an article that begins, "The Supreme Court of Canada has agreed to hear an appeal of an Ottawa Citizen libel case that could greatly expand legal protection for journalists who responsibly report stories in the public interest."
Posted at 04:08 PM by Howard Bashman


"Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia to visit R.I." The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia is preparing to visit Rhode Island. Scalia will visit the Roger Williams University law school on Monday, where he'll host an hourlong question-and-answer session with students and faculty. He'll also teach a class on constitutional law."
Posted at 04:00 PM by Howard Bashman


"Nottingham is being viewed from both sides": Tuesday's edition of The Denver Post contained an article that begins, "Since Chief U.S. District Judge Edward W. Nottingham Jr. slammed his gavel down at former Qwest chief executive Joe Nacchio in July and lectured him on morality, the focus has turned to the judge's own behavior on and off the bench."

And Wednesday's edition of The Rocky Mountain News contained an editorial entitled "Judge on the hot seat: Public should learn if Nottingham is punished."
Posted at 02:08 PM by Howard Bashman



"Where's the justice in this department?" Columnist Robyn E. Blumner has this op-ed today in The St. Petersburg Times.
Posted at 02:00 PM by Howard Bashman


"Drug Makers Near Old Goal: A Legal Shield." The New York Times today contains an article that begins, "For years, Johnson & Johnson obscured evidence that its popular Ortho Evra birth control patch delivered much more estrogen than standard birth control pills, potentially increasing the risk of blood clots and strokes, according to internal company documents. But because the Food and Drug Administration approved the patch, the company is arguing in court that it cannot be sued by women who claim that they were injured by the product -- even though its old label inaccurately described the amount of estrogen it released. This legal argument is called pre-emption. After decades of being dismissed by courts, the tactic now appears to be on the verge of success, lawyers for plaintiffs and drug companies say."
Posted at 01:45 PM by Howard Bashman


"Deposed, not composed; Under oath, he swore, and swore": Today's edition of The Philadelphia Inquirer contains an article that begins, "Maybe a bar of soap would work better. A federal judge in Philadelphia has fined a foul-mouthed CEO and his lawyer $29,323 for making a 'spectacular failure' out of a court-related proceeding in what has become a most uncivil civil case. Over 12 hours on two days in the fall, Aaron Wider, a mortgage company owner from Long Island, N.Y., launched the F-bomb or some variation 73 times. Wider's expletive-spewing rants forced his deposition to a premature end, and shocked U.S. District Court Judge Eduardo Robreno, who later said he had never seen anything like it in his three decades in the legal profession. Now Wider's testimony has become an Internet hit with financial and legal bloggers who have dubbed it 'The Deposition From Heck.'"

The article provides access to video from the deposition.
Posted at 01:37 PM by Howard Bashman



"Evidence the Pa. death penalty is punishment existing in name only": Columnist Michael Smerconish has this op-ed today in The Philadelphia Inquirer.
Posted at 01:22 PM by Howard Bashman


"High court victory may give bench new bent; Balance shift likely with conservative's 10-year term": This article appears today in The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. In addition, columnist Eugene Kane has an op-ed entitled "Butler lost court race but not his integrity," while columnist Patrick McIlheran has an op-ed entitled "Next time, vote as you're told."

And The Wisconsin State Journal today contains an article headlined "High court races as barroom brawls."
Posted at 09:22 AM by Howard Bashman



"Police not required to show search warrant right away": Today in The Providence (R.I.) Journal, Edward Fitzpatrick has an article that begins, "On television, when the police are going to search a house, they immediately show a search warrant to the homeowner. But when the state police raided the Narragansett Indian smoke shop, a trooper kept the warrant in his back pocket and did not display a copy for somewhere from 10 to 30 minutes into the raid -- after tribe members had been arrested and after Chief Sachem Matthew Thomas had repeatedly asked for a warrant."
Posted at 09:17 AM by Howard Bashman


"A Supreme Court in thrall to casinos": This editorial appears today in The Philadelphia Inquirer.
Posted at 09:15 AM by Howard Bashman


"Cobb hews close to Supreme Court majority": Today's edition of The Mobile Press-Register contains an article that begins, "Since breaking onto the all-Republican Alabama Supreme Court in 2007, Democratic Chief Justice Sue Bell Cobb has sided with her GOP brethren more than 90 percent of the time. But that has done little to mollify some of her fiercest critics."
Posted at 09:12 AM by Howard Bashman


"Wyo: Toss Montana's lawsuit." The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "Wyoming's attorney general asked the U.S. Supreme Court on Friday to dismiss a lawsuit alleging the state's agriculture and energy industries are using too much water in violation of an interstate agreement."
Posted at 09:10 AM by Howard Bashman


Saturday, April 05, 2008

"In Web World of 24/7 Stress, Writers Blog Till They Drop": This article will appear Sunday in The New York Times.
Posted at 11:05 PM by Howard Bashman


"A successor to Greenhouse": At "SCOTUSblog," Lyle Denniston has a post that begins, "The New York Times indicated on Friday that its new Supreme Court reporter will be Adam Liptak, succeeding Linda Greenhouse, who is headed for an academic appointment at Yale Law School."
Posted at 03:35 PM by Howard Bashman


"Retired Justice's Focus Now on Civic Education Project": Mark Walsh has this article in the April 9, 2008 issue of Education Week.
Posted at 03:34 PM by Howard Bashman


"Wisconsin's Judicial Revolution": Columnist John Fund has this op-ed today in The Wall Street Journal.
Posted at 03:32 PM by Howard Bashman


"ACLU taps legal talent to defend alleged terrorists": Carol Rosenberg has this article today in The Miami Herald.

And The New York Times reports today that "A Legal Filing Alleges a Detainee Was Abused."
Posted at 03:30 PM by Howard Bashman



"Thomas found guilty of lying in BALCO probe": Today in The San Francisco Chronicle, Lance Williams has an article that begins, "In a case that could prefigure the upcoming trial of ex-Giants slugger Barry Bonds, a former bicycle racing champion caught up in the BALCO steroid scandal was found guilty in San Francisco on Friday of lying to a federal grand jury about her use of banned drugs." In addition, columnist Gwen Knapp has an op-ed entitled "Bonds needn't worry too much about cyclist's conviction."

The New York Times reports that "Thomas Is Found Guilty in First Trial Linked to Balco Case."

And The Associated Press reports that "Cyclist Thomas Found Guilty of Perjury."
Posted at 03:27 PM by Howard Bashman



"Mukasey Adjusting Slowly to Atty Gen Job": Lara Jakes Jordan of The Associated Press provides this report.
Posted at 03:20 PM by Howard Bashman


Friday, April 04, 2008

"Illinois Supreme Court denies appeal in AIDS infection suit": The Chicago Tribune today contains an article that begins, "A Chicago woman who sued her fiance's parents for allegedly covering up that he was dying of AIDS is not entitled to a $2 million jury award she received in 2004, the Illinois Supreme Court ruled Thursday."

And The Daily Herald of Arlington Heights, Illinois reports that "Court rules family not liable for woman's AIDS."

You can access Thursday's ruling of the Supreme Court of Illinois at this link.
Posted at 11:58 PM by Howard Bashman



"Professor Answers Justice Breyer's Wish for Study on Pro Se; 2007 report contradicts belief that defendants are harmed by self-representation; U.S. Supreme Court's Breyer praises work": law.com provides this report.
Posted at 11:57 PM by Howard Bashman


"Elections for Judges Are Getting Nastier; The Wisconsin Supreme Court race is just one example of what's ahead": Emma Schwartz has this article online at the web site of U.S. News & World Report.

And in somewhat related news, The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports today that "Abrahamson plans for re-election run; Chief justice says she believes in system."
Posted at 11:54 PM by Howard Bashman



"Networks Say Live TV Is at Stake in Fox Decency Case": This article will appear Saturday in The Washington Post.
Posted at 11:50 PM by Howard Bashman


"US Defends Detention of Chinese Muslim": The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "The Bush administration argued Friday that when Congress authorized military action against the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorists, it also gave the president the power to detain people who never took up arms against the U.S."

The case was argued today before a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.
Posted at 02:15 PM by Howard Bashman



Eighth Circuit holds that Arkansas law does not permit the police to arrest someone merely for refusing to identify himself: Today's ruling, by a unanimous three-judge Eighth Circuit panel, addresses "whether Arkansas law permits a police officer to arrest a person for refusing to identify himself when he is not suspected of other criminal activity and his identification is not needed to protect officer safety or to resolve whatever reasonable suspicions prompted the officer to initiate an on-going traffic stop or Terry stop."
Posted at 11:33 AM by Howard Bashman


"Facebook Must Defend Code-Theft Lawsuit, Appeals Court Rules": Bloomberg News provides a report that begins, "Facebook Inc., the social-networking Web site, must defend against a lawsuit that accuses founder Mark Zuckerberg of stealing computer code, an appeals court ruled. Yesterday's decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals in Boston revived a 2004 suit by ConnectU Inc. founders Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss that was dismissed last year on procedural grounds."

My earlier coverage of yesterday's First Circuit ruling appears at this link.
Posted at 09:18 AM by Howard Bashman



"Music downloaders win round in court": The Boston Globe today contains an article that begins, "Boston University students have won what one lawyer hailed as a 'David and Goliath' victory after challenging one of the recording industry's most aggressive tactics: lawsuits targeting people who illegally download music. US District Judge Nancy Gertner ruled this week that the university cannot turn over the names of students to several major record companies that sued for the information until she can do a more in-depth review. The ruling, for the moment, quashes the companies' efforts to hold the students liable for copyright infringement, which could have resulted in thousands of dollars in fines. Lawyers who supported the students said the decision would make it harder for record companies to win some 20,000 similar cases they have brought nationwide."

You can access Monday's ruling of the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts at this link.
Posted at 09:15 AM by Howard Bashman



"Calif. Supreme Court Ruling Gives Manufacturers Added Protection From Lawsuits": law.com provides a report that begins, "Manufacturers got added protection from lawsuits Thursday when the California Supreme Court ruled they can't be held liable for not warning specialists about product dangers that should be well known within their professions."

My earlier coverage of yesterday's ruling appears at this link.
Posted at 09:09 AM by Howard Bashman



"Judge OKs $24 million award to injured railroad trespassers": The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "A judge upheld a jury's $24 million award to a pair of teens who were severely burned by electrical wires when they climbed atop a rail car."

And Wednesday's edition of The Lancaster New Era reported that "$24M verdict upheld in railroad burn case."

You can access Monday's ruling of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania at this link.
Posted at 09:07 AM by Howard Bashman



"Defense in Wecht trial cheers apparent hung jury": Jason Cato has this article today in The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports today that "Wecht jury deadlocked; judge says to go on."

And The Associated Press reports that "Celebrity Pathologist Jury Stuck."
Posted at 09:01 AM by Howard Bashman



"W.Va. Supreme Court overturns Massey verdict": The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "Four months, two recusals and numerous national headlines later, West Virginia's Supreme Court has echoed its earlier conclusion vacating a $76.3 million judgment against Massey Energy Co. in a coal contract dispute. As it had in November, the court voted 3-2 to overturn a 2002 Boone County verdict that Harman Mining Co., and its president had won against the competing coal producer."

The Charleston (W. Va.) Gazette reports today that "Court sides with Massey; Brent Benjamin breaks tie in 3-2 decision."

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette today contains an article headlined "W.Va. ruling faces appeal to top court; Mining firm claims bias in favor of Massey" that begins, "Two Pittsburgh attorneys whose clients were on the losing end of the West Virginia Supreme Court's decision overturning a $77 million judgment against Massey Energy will appeal the ruling -- and how the court reached it -- to the U.S. Supreme Court."

The Wall Street Journal reports that "Massey Wins Latest Round With Harman."

Yesterday's 3-2 ruling of the Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia consisted of a majority opinion (available in both HTML and PDF formats) and a dissenting opinion (available in both HTML and PDF formats, with appendix).

In a related development, ABC News yesterday posted online a report headlined "Coal Boss: If You Take Photos, 'You're Liable to Get Shot'; Don Blankenship Grabbed an ABC News Reporter's Camera During the Incident."

And in other coverage, The AP reports that "ABC News says Massey chief threatened producer; Network to air footage Monday."
Posted at 08:50 AM by Howard Bashman



"Roommates.com can be sued for violating fair housing laws, court rules; The website requires users to provide information, including their race and sexual orientation, which could foster housing discrimination": Maura Dolan has this article today in The Los Angeles Times.

Adam Tanner of Reuters has a report headlined "Straight or gay? U.S. court says Web site can't ask."

law.com provides a report headlined "9th Circuit: No Immunity for Roommates.com Under Communications Decency Act; Dissenting judge: 'the majority has dramatically altered the landscape of Internet liability.'"

And at Wired.com's "Threat Level" blog, Ryan Singel has a post titled "Roommates.com Not Immune From Discrimination Lawsuit, Appeals Court Rules."

My earlier coverage of yesterday's en banc Ninth Circuit ruling appears at this link.
Posted at 08:40 AM by Howard Bashman



"Administration Asserted a Terror Exception on Search and Seizure": Dan Eggen and Josh White have this article today in The Washington Post.
Posted at 08:24 AM by Howard Bashman


"Widower of J&J heiress wins right to part of $360M trust; State justices side with Broadway producer": Today's edition of The Newark (N.J.) Star-Ledger contains an article that begins, "A Broadway producer who married the now-deceased daughter of J. Seward Johnson Sr. -- a scion of the Johnson & Johnson pharmaceutical empire -- is entitled to a portion of the $360 million trust fund Johnson set up, the state Supreme Court ruled yesterday."

And The New York Times reports today that "New Jersey Court's Ruling Ends 12-Year Fight Among Johnson & Johnson Heirs."

You can access yesterday's 5-2 ruling of the Supreme Court of New Jersey at this link.
Posted at 08:10 AM by Howard Bashman



"Thomas Jury Deliberations to Continue": The New York Times today contains an article that begins, "A federal jury completed its first day of deliberations Thursday without reaching a verdict in the case of the former cyclist Tammy Thomas, who is on trial charged with making false statements under oath about her use of performance-enhancing drugs."
Posted at 08:05 AM by Howard Bashman


"Appeals Court Panel Throws Out Class Action Over Light Cigarettes": This article appears today in The New York Times.

Today in The New York Sun, Joseph Goldstein reports that "Judge Stamps Out a Cigarette Class Action."

And law.com reports that "2nd Circuit Decertifies Light Cigarette Class."

My earlier coverage of yesterday's Second Circuit ruling appears at this link.
Posted at 07:57 AM by Howard Bashman



"There Were Orders to Follow": The New York Times today contains an editorial that begins, "You can often tell if someone understands how wrong their actions are by the lengths to which they go to rationalize them. It took 81 pages of twisted legal reasoning to justify President Bush's decision to ignore federal law and international treaties and authorize the abuse and torture of prisoners."

Today's edition of The Washington Post contains an editorial entitled "Tortured Logic: An infamous memo gets a public vetting -- five years too late."

And The Los Angeles Times contains an editorial entitled "The torture memos, declassified: How did we get here? Justice Department writings reveal the origins of 'enhanced' interrogation."
Posted at 07:53 AM by Howard Bashman



"Airline Passengers, Beware: The Government Does Not Protect Your Rights When You Fly, As a Recent Federal Appellate Decision Attests." John W. Dean has this essay online today at FindLaw.
Posted at 07:35 AM by Howard Bashman


Thursday, April 03, 2008

"Bush Officials Oppose Media Shield Bill": Pete Yost of The Associated Press provides this report.
Posted at 10:37 PM by Howard Bashman


"Appeals Court Upholds Court's Word Ban": The AP provides a report that begins, "An appeals court on Thursday upheld the dismissal of a lawsuit against a judge who banned 'rape' and other words in a sexual assault trial."

You can access today's ruling of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit at this link.
Posted at 10:35 PM by Howard Bashman



"Appeals court: Fla. can enforce anti-voter fraud law for now." The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "Florida can temporarily enforce a law that disqualifies any voter registration where the Social Security or driver license number on the application can't be matched with government databases, an appeals court ruled Thursday."

You can access today's ruling of a divided three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit at this link.
Posted at 10:30 PM by Howard Bashman



Does the rule requiring that a federal district court's subject-matter jurisdiction be evaluated as of the time the lawsuit was filed prohibit the plaintiff from relying on an amended complaint filed as of right that asserts a valid jurisdictional basis lacking from the original complaint? Senior Circuit Judge Bruce M. Selya issued this ruling today on behalf of a unanimous three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit in a contentious dispute over who invented the idea behind the Facebook web site. Today's ruling holds that where an amended complaint filed as of right supplies a viable jurisdictional basis, the lawsuit cannot be dismissed merely because the district court lacked subject-matter jurisdiction over the original complaint.
Posted at 10:14 PM by Howard Bashman


The Supreme Court of California unanimously adopts the "sophisticated user" defense to negate a manufacturer's duty to warn of a product's potential danger when the plaintiff has (or should have) advance knowledge of the product's inherent hazards: You can access at this link today's ruling from California's highest court.
Posted at 02:52 PM by Howard Bashman


"Jurors in Wecht case tell judge they're deadlocked": The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette provides a news update that begins, "The jury in the Dr. Cyril H. Wecht trial told U.S. District Judge Arthur J. Schwab they were deadlocked, but the judge told them to keep deliberating anyway. The jury sent a note at 1:40 p.m. to Judge Schwab that read, in part, 'We agree that additional deliberations would not be helpful.' The judge then polled jurors individually, and all agreed they would be unable to reach a unanimous verdict on any of the 41 charges the former county coroner faces."

And Jason Cato of The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review provides a news update headlined "Wecht jurors say they are deadlocked."
Posted at 02:42 PM by Howard Bashman



"Justices Kennedy & Thomas on the SCOTUS 2009 Budget": You can view this past Saturday's broadcast of C-SPAN's "America & the Courts" by clicking here (RealPlayer required).
Posted at 02:38 PM by Howard Bashman


"Judge in DUI case buoyed by support; Letter-writing effort shows perspective shift": This article appears today in The Boston Globe.
Posted at 02:32 PM by Howard Bashman


"Suit on Light Cigarettes Is Thrown Out": The New York Times provides a news update that begins, "The tobacco industry scored a legal victory on Thursday when a federal appeals court threw out an $800 billion class-action lawsuit on behalf of smokers of light cigarettes who said they were misled to believe the cigarettes were safer than regular ones."

Reuters reports that "Appeals court tosses $800 billion tobacco suit."

Dow Jones Newswires report that "Appeals Court Rejects Class Action In 'Light' Cigarettes Marketing Case."

And The Associated Press reports that "Court Overturns Tobacco Suit Ruling."

My earlier coverage of today's Second Circuit ruling appears at this link.
Posted at 02:27 PM by Howard Bashman



Eleven-judge en banc panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issues its ruling in Fair Housing Council v. Roommates.com: You can access today's 8-3 ruling at this link.

Chief Judge Alex Kozinski, who had written the majority opinion on behalf of a divided three-judge panel in this case, wrote today's en banc majority opinion. Circuit Judge M. Margaret McKeown wrote a spirited dissent from today's ruling, and Circuit Judges Pamela Ann Rymer and Carlos T. Bea joined in the dissent.

My extensive earlier coverage of the three-judge panel's ruling in this case can be accessed via posts that appear here and here. And the May 21, 2007 installment of my "On Appeal" column for law.com was headlined "When Should a Commercial Web Site Be Held Liable for User-Generated Content?"
Posted at 01:32 PM by Howard Bashman



U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit reverses U.S. District Judge Jack B. Weinstein's class action certification of an action brought by cigarette smokers allegedly deceived into believing that "light" cigarettes were healthier than "full-flavored" cigarettes: You can access today's ruling, by a unanimous three-judge panel, at this link.

Today's Second Circuit decision overturns a 540-page ruling issued on September 25, 2006. My earlier coverage of that ruling appeared here and here.

Update: Joseph Goldstein of The New York Sun reports that "$800 Billion Tobacco Lawsuit Is Thrown Out."
Posted at 11:18 AM by Howard Bashman



"Prosecutor says cyclist hampered BALCO case": Today in The San Francisco Chronicle, Lance Williams has an article that begins, "Authorities were unable to close the deal and indict a chemist who played a key role in the BALCO steroids scandal, because a former cycling champion lied about the drugs she obtained from him, a federal prosecutor declared Wednesday. But a lawyer for perjury defendant Tammy Thomas, a former high-profile bicycle racer, retorted that his client's only offense was to refuse to 'confess her sins' to government investigators whom the attorney characterized as being bent on driving steroids from elite sports rather than prosecuting real crime."
Posted at 09:55 AM by Howard Bashman


"Behind the Scenes of Secret Surveillance and Its Public Unmasking": Today in The New York Times, Law Professor Jeffrey Rosen has this review of Eric Lichtblau's new book, "Bush's Law: The Remaking of American Justice."
Posted at 09:44 AM by Howard Bashman


"Legal Bondage: Why we like restrictions on sex." Online at The New Republic, Law Professor Jeffrey Rosen has an essay that begins, "The day of Eliot Spitzer's ignominious resignation, I reread one of the most splenetic dissents in the recent history of the Supreme Court: the jeremiad Antonin Scalia wrote in response to the Lawrence v. Texas ruling that legalized sodomy."
Posted at 09:40 AM by Howard Bashman


"How To Write An Effective Torture Memo; After Years Of Legal Wrangling, An Infamous Document Is Finally Made Public": CBS News legal analyst Andrew Cohen has this "CourtWatch" column.
Posted at 09:38 AM by Howard Bashman


"Focus on 'honest services'; Pros, cons of argument take center stage in Skilling's appeal": The Houston Chronicle contains this article today.

The Times-Picayune of New Orleans reports today that "Enron appeal is argued in N.O.; U.S. jurists weigh former CEO's case."

And Texas Lawyer reports that "Skilling's Lawyer Stresses Honest-Services Issue at 5th Circuit."
Posted at 09:35 AM by Howard Bashman



"A warrant for William Jefferson: Members of Congress should be subject to warrants, just like any other American citizen." This editorial appears today in The Los Angeles Times.
Posted at 09:32 AM by Howard Bashman


"Weiss of Milberg Weiss Enters Guilty Plea in Deal": Josh Gerstein has this article today in The New York Sun.

The Associated Press reports that "Weiss Pleads Guilty in Kickback Case."

Reuters reports that "Class action king pleads guilty to racketeering."

And Bloomberg News reports that "Mel Weiss Pleads Guilty to Paying Clients Kickbacks."
Posted at 09:30 AM by Howard Bashman



"Quilt Show Bumps Ex-Soldier's Trial": In news from Paducah, Kentucky (which I once had to visit for work, many years ago), The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "The trial of a former Fort Campbell soldier charged with raping a 14-year-old Iraqi girl and murdering her and her family has been delayed by two weeks because of a quilt show."
Posted at 09:23 AM by Howard Bashman


"Freedom eludes many crack inmates; Though new rules have reduced sentences for some, others remain behind bars because of bureaucratic delays and Justice Department opposition": The Los Angeles Times contains this article today.
Posted at 09:17 AM by Howard Bashman


"Memo Sheds New Light on Torture Issue": This article appears today in The New York Times.
Posted at 09:15 AM by Howard Bashman


"Gitmo tribunal rules limit evidence disclosures; As the Guantanamo war court edges toward full-blown trials, closures, censorship and document delays cloud transparency": Today in The Miami Herald, Carol Rosenberg has an article that begins, "A defense lawyer lets slip at the war court convening here that a battlefield commander changed an Afghanistan firefight report in a way that seemed to help a U.S. government murder case. Reporters hear the field commander's name but are forbidden to report it. In another case, a judge approves the release of a captive's interrogation video showing the blurred face of an American agent. But a federal prosecutor on loan to the Pentagon withholds it 'out of an abundance of caution.'"

The newspaper has also posted online a 12-page document entitled "Media Policy and Ground Rules for Naval Station Guantanamo Bay, Cuba." I guess this would be useful reading material for anyone hoping to be included in a possible law bloggers' tour of Guantanamo.
Posted at 09:14 AM by Howard Bashman



"Florida abortions may require ultrasound; The House passed a bill to mandate ultrasounds for all abortions while critics called it a barrier to abortion access": The Miami Herald contains this article today.

The South Florida Sun-Sentinel reports today that "Florida House votes to require ultrasound before all abortions."

The Tampa Tribune reports that "House Votes To Require 1st Trimester Ultrasound."

The St. Petersburg Times reports that "House votes to add abortion rule."

The Tallahassee Democrat reports that "Florida House debates, OKs abortion bill."

And The Ledger of Lakeland, Florida reports that "Abortion Bill Would Require Ultrasound; State House OKs plan; Senate may hear the proposal next week."
Posted at 09:08 AM by Howard Bashman



"Lawyers Fight DNA Samples Gained on Sly": This article appears today in The New York Times.
Posted at 08:50 AM by Howard Bashman


"After bitter race, calls for reform; Election's tone hurt high court's standing, some say": The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel today contains an article that begins, "The bitter race between Louis Butler and Michael Gableman for the state Supreme Court turned what was supposed to be a nonpartisan contest into a partisan battle that former justices and others said tattered the court's reputation."

Relatedly, The Wall Street Journal today contains an editorial entitled "The Wisconsin 'Tragedy': A state Supreme Court justice is ousted by referendum; Too bad more states can't hold their judges to account."

And in other news from Wisconsin, The New York Times today contains an article headlined "Wisconsin Voters Excise Editing From Governor's Veto Powers" that begins, "Wisconsin governors have long been allowed to sign off on budget bills but do some tricky erasing first. They could delete words, numbers, sentences, paragraphs or some combination of all of those, to create entirely new meanings never intended by the original authors -- a legislative twist on the game of Mad Libs." Those interested in this issue won't want to miss the "VetoMatic" web site.
Posted at 08:33 AM by Howard Bashman



"Wecht lawyer objects to ill juror's dismissal; Ex-coroner's attorney wants judge to halt deliberations in case": The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette contains this article today.

And today in The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, Jason Cato has an article headlined "Defense moves to halt jury deliberations" in which I am quoted.
Posted at 08:22 AM by Howard Bashman



"Kelo and Us": This editorial appears today in The New York Sun.
Posted at 07:58 AM by Howard Bashman


Wednesday, April 02, 2008

"Baboon provided needed link in BALCO test": Lance Williams has this article today in The San Francisco Chronicle.

And this evening, The Associated Press reports that "Jury Gets BALCO Case."
Posted at 09:05 PM by Howard Bashman



"Yoo Talkin' to Me? Plausible deniability, and other reasons why warfare by midlevel legal memoranda is a really bad idea." Dahlia Lithwick has this jurisprudence essay online at Slate.
Posted at 08:57 PM by Howard Bashman


"Memo Justified Warrantless Surveillance": The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "For at least 16 months after the Sept. 11 terror attacks in 2001, the Bush administration believed that the Constitution's protection against unreasonable searches and seizures on U.S. soil didn't apply to its efforts to protect against terrorism. That view was expressed in a secret Justice Department legal memo dated Oct. 23, 2001. The administration on Wednesday stressed that it now disavows that view."

According to The AP's article, "The 37-page memo is classified and has not been released. Its existence was disclosed Tuesday in a footnote of a separate secret memo, dated March 14, 2003, released by the Pentagon in response to a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit by the American Civil Liberties Union."
Posted at 08:55 PM by Howard Bashman



"Justice Probes Lawyer's Dismissal Amid Gay Rumor": This audio segment (RealPlayer required) appeared on this evening's broadcast of NPR's "All Things Considered."
Posted at 08:50 PM by Howard Bashman


"Wecht defense objects to excusing sick juror": The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette provides a news update that begins, "Attorneys for Dr. Cyril H. Wecht this afternoon filed an emergency motion asking a judge to vacate his order excusing a juror who fell ill yesterday afternoon."

And Jason Cato of The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review has a news update headlined "Wecht jury continues minus-1."
Posted at 08:45 PM by Howard Bashman



"Lawyer to appeals court: Clear Skilling of Enron charges." The Houston Chronicle provides this news update.
Posted at 08:42 PM by Howard Bashman


"Skilling hearing concludes with a smaller audience than expected": The Times-Picayune of New Orleans provides a news update that begins, "A hearing for former Enron chief executive Jeffrey Skilling at the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans this afternoon commanded less of an audience than some of the post-Hurricane Katrina insurance cases heard in New Orleans." According to the article, seats remained in the courtroom where the appeal was being argued, and thus the available overflow courtrooms did not need to be used.

And The Associated Press reports that "Court Hears Appeal of Enron's Skilling."
Posted at 05:21 PM by Howard Bashman



"Enron onlookers bring cocktail party atmosphere to court library": A little earlier this afternoon, The Times-Picayune of New Orleans posted online a news update that begins, "The normally quiet library at the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Camp Street is filled with noisy chatter at this hour as a crowd gathers in anticipation of hearing former Enron Corp. chief executive Jeffrey Skilling's appeal this afternoon."
Posted at 04:37 PM by Howard Bashman


"The Green Light: As the first anniversary of 9/11 approached, and a prized Guantanamo detainee wouldn't talk, the Bush administration's highest-ranking lawyers argued for extreme interrogation techniques, circumventing international law, the Geneva Conventions, and the army's own Field Manual; The attorneys would even fly to Guantanamo to ratchet up the pressure--then blame abuses on the military." Philippe Sands will have this article in the May 2008 issue of Vanity Fair magazine.
Posted at 04:33 PM by Howard Bashman


In the April 2008 issue of ABA Journal magazine: David G. Savage has an article headlined "Death for Rape, an Echo of the Past; In a busy month for criminal cases, SCOTUS looks once more at capital punishment."

And the publication also contains an article headlined "A Cowgirl Rides the Circuits; Retired Justice Sandra Day O'Connor puts her brand on federal appellate courts."
Posted at 04:20 PM by Howard Bashman



"Gableman victorious; Challenger beats Butler in high court race; 1st such ouster since '67": The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel today contains an article that begins, "Burnett County Circuit Judge Michael Gableman won a seat on the Wisconsin Supreme Court by a narrow margin Tuesday, bucking history and becoming the first challenger to knock off an incumbent state Supreme Court justice in more than 40 years. When Gableman takes the seat Aug. 1, it will be the first time in 110 years there hasn't been a justice from Milwaukee."

The Capital Times of Madison, Wisconsin today contains an article headlined "Gableman's victory shifts court to right" and an editorial entitled "Ugly result to ugly race."

And The Associated Press reports that "Wisconsin Justice Ousted in Nasty Race."
Posted at 04:08 PM by Howard Bashman



"Bar wants Scruggs' law license stripped; Formal action would be premature, lawyer's attorney argues": This article appears today in The Clarion-Ledger of Jackson, Mississippi.
Posted at 02:45 PM by Howard Bashman


Unanimous three-judge Ninth Circuit panel recognizes a state convict's limited due process right of access to the evidence, used to convict him of sexual assault, for purposes of post-conviction DNA testing: You can access today's ruling at this link.
Posted at 02:42 PM by Howard Bashman


Seventh Circuit affirms the dismissal of a securities class action and an ERISA class action against Tribune Company arising from fraudulently overstated circulation figures of two newspapers, Newsday and the Spanish-language Hoy: Circuit Judge Terence T. Evans wrote today's opinion on behalf of a unanimous three-judge panel.
Posted at 02:33 PM by Howard Bashman


"Judge Posner's How Judges Think--Part 1": Ed Whelan has this post today at National Review Online's "Bench Memos" blog. [Update: Part 2 of Ed's series of posts on this book has now arrived, and you can access it here.]

Judge Posner's book, published by Harvard University Press, is scheduled to be released on April 15, 2008. You can read an excerpt by clicking here. And you can learn a bit more about the book via a Columbia Law School news release headlined "How Judges Think: U.S. Appellate Judge And Prolific Author Richard Posner Explains The View From The Bench."
Posted at 12:08 PM by Howard Bashman



"Senate Shutdown": The Wall Street Journal today contains an editorial that begins, "It's not every day that a Member of the world's greatest deliberative body stops by to chat about his plans 'to close the Senate down.' Especially if his name is Arlen Specter. But the Pennsylvania Republican tells us he's concluded that this is the only way to prod Democrats to vote on, or even hold confirmation hearings on, President Bush's appeals-court nominees."
Posted at 12:00 PM by Howard Bashman


More information about today's oral argument in the case of United States of America vs. Jeffrey K. Skilling, Appellant, No. 06-20885, before a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit: The Fifth Circuit has issued this notice regarding the oral argument. The oral argument is scheduled to begin at 2 p.m. central time in Room 223 (also known as the East Courtroom) of the John Minor Wisdom United States Court of Appeals Building, 600 Camp Street, in New Orleans. Once all seats are taken in that courtroom, the Fifth Circuit plans to open up additional courtrooms for the expected overflow crowd, and a live audio feed of the oral argument will be transmitted into those additional courtrooms.

The three-judge panel assigned to hear and decide the appeal consists of Circuit Judges Jerry E. Smith and Edward C. Prado, joined by U.S. District Judge Alia M. Ludlum of the Western District of Texas, sitting by designation.

Previewing the oral argument, The Times-Picayune of New Orleans reports that "Enron CEO's appeal to be heard in N.O. today; large crowds expected in court." And yesterday, the newspaper reported that "Ex-Enron exec fighting verdict; 5th Circuit in N.O. braces for crowds." The newspaper has also posted online Skilling's opening Brief for Appellant and the federal government's Brief for Appellee.

Earlier today, I collected additional press coverage in a post that you can access here. Judge Smith, who will preside over the appellate panel this afternoon, was the first interviewee in this blog's "20 Questions for the Appellate Judge" series. You can access his interview by clicking here.
Posted at 10:45 AM by Howard Bashman



"Memo: Laws Didn't Apply to Interrogators; Justice Dept. Official in 2003 Said President's Wartime Authority Trumped Many Statutes." Dan Eggen and Josh White have this front page article today in The Washington Post. The newspaper has posted online the now-infamous memo, by Law Professor John C. Yoo, in two parts: part one and part two.

The New York Times reports today that "'03 U.S. Memo Approved Harsh Interrogations."

And The Wall Street Journal reports that "U.S. 2003 Memo Allowed 'Enhanced' Interrogation."
Posted at 09:17 AM by Howard Bashman



"The Laws in Wartime: Boost trust, Close Guantanamo and establish a national security court." Jack Goldsmith has this essay online today at Slate.

And Slate today has also posted online an essay by Bruce Fein entitled "The Presidency: End the war on terror as a legal paradigm; abolish military commissions, and restore FISA."
Posted at 09:10 AM by Howard Bashman



"Va. Executions Are Put on Hold; Kaine Orders Halt Till U.S. Supreme Court Rules on Lethal Injections": This article appears today in The Washington Post.

And The Times-Dispatch of Richmond, Virginia reports today that "Governor Kaine postpones Bell execution; Executions will be stayed till U.S. high court rules in lethal-injection case."
Posted at 09:05 AM by Howard Bashman



"US judge in DUI rethinks quitting; Arrest, cross-dressing had caused an uproar": The Boston Globe today contains an article that begins, "A federal judge said yesterday that he is reconsidering his resignation, two months after he was charged by New Hampshire authorities with drunken driving. The arrest had caused an uproar, not only because a member of the judiciary had been accused of a crime, but because, as his lawyer confirmed yesterday, US Bankruptcy Court Judge Robert Somma was wearing a woman's dress when he was involved in the car accident that triggered the charges."
Posted at 09:02 AM by Howard Bashman


"Ignoring the Supreme Court: The Bush administration punts on greenhouse emissions." This editorial appears today in The Washington Post.
Posted at 09:00 AM by Howard Bashman


"Antiabortion Ballot Initiative Appears Likely": Today's edition of The Washington Post contains an article that begins, "Abortion opponents in South Dakota filed petitions this week that are likely to put an initiative on November's ballot calling for a near-ban on abortion, renewing a contentious fight over a similar proposal in 2006."

And yesterday's edition of The Argus Leader of Sioux Falls, South Dakota reported that "Backers say ban will pass this time; Groups gear up for abortion fight."
Posted at 08:58 AM by Howard Bashman



"MHSAA ordered to pay legal bill; Judge: Association owes $7.4 million for gender-equity suit." The Ann Arbor News today contains an article that begins, "With the Michigan High School Athletic Association ordered to pay $7.4 million in legal fees and interest, one area athletic director expects member schools will continue to support the governing body. Regardless of the costs, school districts statewide may be asked to cover the bill. On Monday, U.S. District Judge Richard A. Enslen directed the MHSAA to pay $4.4 million in attorneys' fees relating to a 2007 decision that deemed its previous scheduling system discriminatory to some female student-athletes."

The Detroit News reports today that "Michigan prep sports group to pay $7.4M; Court ruling is big financial blow to Michigan High School Athletic Association."

The Detroit Free Press reports that "Judge orders MHSAA to pay $7 million plus."

The Grand Rapids Press contains an article headlined "Judge: MHSAA to pay $4.5 million."

And The Associated Press reports that "Mich. Athletic Group Ordered to Pay $7M."

I have posted online at this link Monday's ruling of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan.
Posted at 08:45 AM by Howard Bashman



"U.S. and Britain at Odds Over Guantanamo Inmate": This article appears today in The New York Times.
Posted at 08:30 AM by Howard Bashman


"Embassy bombings widow criticizes war court": Today in The Miami Herald, Carol Rosenberg has an article that begins, "An American college professor whose Kenyan husband was killed in the 1998 al Qaeda suicide bombing of the U.S. Embassy in Tanzania said Tuesday that a Guantanamo detainee accused in the attack should be tried in a civilian federal court, not by a military commission."
Posted at 08:25 AM by Howard Bashman


"2nd Circuit Allows Bias Claim of White Man With Black Wife": law.com provides this report.

My earlier coverage of yesterday's Second Circuit ruling appears at this link.
Posted at 08:22 AM by Howard Bashman



"Atlantic Yards May Prompt 9 To Revisit Eminent Domain": Today in The New York Sun, Joseph Goldstein has an article that begins, "The proposed Atlantic Yards development near downtown Brooklyn could prompt the U.S. Supreme Court to reconsider when government may use eminent domain to seize private property."

The New York Daily News reports today that "Residents being displaced by Atlantic Yards ask Supreme Court to hear case."

The New York Post reports that "'Yards' case to Supremes."

The Associated Press reports that "Property group appeals to Supreme Court in Atlantic Yards case."

And at "SCOTUSblog," Lyle Denniston has a post titled "Kelo sequel to Court."

You can view the petition for writ of certiorari by clicking here.
Posted at 08:11 AM by Howard Bashman



"Court to Hear Appeal of Enron's Skilling": The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "Former Enron Corp. CEO Jeffrey Skilling's best chance at overturning some of his convictions could hinge on a legal theory by the prosecution, which an appeals court has already decided was flawed. Attorneys for Skilling planned to argue Wednesday before a three-judge panel of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that Skilling's 2006 convictions for his role in Enron's collapse should either be dismissed or he should be retried."

Today's edition of The Houston Chronicle contains articles headlined "Skilling has shot, experts say; 'Honest services' ruling could lead to many convictions being overturned" and "Former Enron boss Skilling brings new strength to appeal."

Bloomberg News reports that "Skilling May Stay in Prison Even If He Wins Enron Fraud Appeal."

And The American Lawyer contains an article headlined "Did Prosecutors Mishandle Skilling Evidence? 5th Circuit to hear latest appeal to overturn former Enron CEO's conviction."
Posted at 08:04 AM by Howard Bashman



"Lethal Injection and Animal Euthanasia: A Fair Comparison?" Sherry F. Colb has this essay online today at FindLaw.
Posted at 07:57 AM by Howard Bashman


Tuesday, April 01, 2008

"Terrorism Interrogators Immune From Prosecution, '03 Memo Says; Since Rescinded, the Document Granted Nearly Unfettered Presidential Power": Dan Eggen and Josh White of The Washington Post have a news update that begins, "Federal laws prohibiting assault and other crimes did not apply to military interrogators who questioned al-Qaeda captives because the president's ultimate authority as commander-in-chief overrode such statutes, according to a newly declassified 2003 Justice Department memo released today."

The newspaper has posted online the memorandum, written by John C. Yoo, in two parts: part one and part two.
Posted at 08:05 PM by Howard Bashman



"ACLU: Military Skirting Law to Spy." The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "The military is using the FBI to skirt legal restrictions on domestic surveillance to obtain private records of Americans' Internet service providers, financial institutions and telephone companies, the ACLU said Tuesday."

The ACLU today issued a news release headlined "Newly Unredacted Documents Confirm Lack Of Oversight Of Military's Domestic Surveillance Powers; Records Released In ACLU's National Security Letters Lawsuit."
Posted at 06:15 PM by Howard Bashman



In the April 2008 issue of The American Lawyer: The magazine contains an article headlined "Empty Chairs: The Pentagon seeks the death penalty but doesn't appoint counsel."

Another article is headlined "For Defendants Alone? The Supreme Court has ruled that FDA approvals preempt many state tort claims, and there may be more preemptions to come."

And my friend Denise Howell, author of the "Bag and Baggage" blog, has an essay entitled "On Life Support: Was the formula for a good work/life balance figured out in the 1970s?"
Posted at 05:04 PM by Howard Bashman



"Public forums at heart of 2 cases": Tony Mauro has this analysis online at the First Amendment Center.
Posted at 03:43 PM by Howard Bashman


"State Courts Unbound": Law Professor Frederic M. Bloom has this interesting article in the March 2008 issue of Cornell Law Review (via "Concurring Opinions").

The article's abstract begins, "We may not think that state courts disobey binding Supreme Court precedent, but occasionally state courts do. In a number of important cases, state courts have actively defied apposite Supreme Court doctrine, and often it is the Court itself that has invited them to."
Posted at 02:34 PM by Howard Bashman



"Bell Atlantic must not be overread." In a decision issued today, Seventh Circuit Judge Richard A. Posner considers the consequences of the U.S. Supreme Court's recent ruling in Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly.

On a related note, in the March 2008 issue of Boston College Law Review, Law Professor A. Benjamin Spencer has an article titled "Plausibility Pleading" (via "Concurring Opinions").
Posted at 02:30 PM by Howard Bashman



"Judge: $1M in Legal Fees for Boehner." The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "A federal judge says House Minority Leader John Boehner can collect more than $1 million in legal fees in his lawsuit against Democratic Rep. Jim McDermott of Washington state. The decision was issued in a decade-long dispute over an illegally taped telephone call. In the 1996 call, Republican leaders discussed an ethics case against then-House Speaker Newt Gingrich, R-Ga. A Florida couple recorded the cell phone call on a radio scanner and McDermott leaked the tape to two newspapers."

You can access yesterday's ruling of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia at this link.
Posted at 12:14 PM by Howard Bashman



Deer, cotton mouse, woodrat, tree-cactus, marsh rabbit, swallowtail butterfly, silver rice rat, and tree snail defeat FEMA and U.S. Department of the Interior on appeal: The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit issued this ruling today. A list of the prevailing parties on appeal can be found in footnote one of the opinion.
Posted at 12:02 PM by Howard Bashman


"We * * * hold that an employer may violate Title VII if it takes action against an employee because of the employee's association with a person of another race." The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit today issued a ruling that vacates the entry of summary judgment against a Title VII claim brought by a white man who alleges that Iona College's decision to terminate his employment as an assistant coach of its basketball team was motivated by his marriage to a black woman.
Posted at 11:48 AM by Howard Bashman


Happy birthday to Justice Samuel A. Alito, Jr. According to the popular "Today in History" feature from The Associated Press, Justice Alito turns 58 years old today. Also celebrating birthdays today, the Hughes brothers turn 36, while rapper-actor Method Man turns 37.
Posted at 09:15 AM by Howard Bashman


"Supreme Court won't hear 7 killers' appeals; Execution dates for Mexicans pending ruling on lethal injection": This article appears today in The Houston Chronicle.

The Monitor of McAllen, Texas reports today that "Supreme Court won't reconsider Mexican nationals death sentences."

Reuters reports that "Mexico protests U.S. ruling on death row case."

And The Associated Press reports that "Condemned Mexican Inmates Denied Appeals."
Posted at 09:10 AM by Howard Bashman



"Supreme Court Rules for Delaware in River Dispute": Linda Greenhouse has this article today in The New York Times.

The Philadelphia Inquirer reports today that "U.S. Supreme Court sides with Delaware in N.J. dispute."

The News Journal of Wilmington, Delaware reports that "Supreme Court backs Del. in river dispute, says state can block N.J. LNG pier; Justices say First State controls river to Garden State's shoreline."

The Newark (N.J.) Star-Ledger reports that "Del. wins border battle over gas pier; Supreme Court upholds block on N.J. project."

The Gloucester County Times contains an article headlined "BP: LNG plan still a go in Logan."

And The Courier-Post of Cherry Hill, New Jersey contains an article headlined "Del. wins fight over Logan gas facility" and an editorial entitled "Congress should split river down the middle."

Coincidentally, the two Justices from New Jersey -- Antonin Scalia and Samuel A. Alito, Jr. -- were the only two Justices to dissent from yesterday's U.S. Supreme Court ruling in favor of Delaware and against New Jersey.
Posted at 09:03 AM by Howard Bashman



"Family Pursues MySpace Sex Assault Suit": The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "The family of a teenage girl who says she was sexually assaulted by a 19-year-old man she met on MySpace.com asked a federal appeals court Monday to revive their lawsuit against the social networking Web site. A federal judge in Austin, Texas, dismissed the $30 million suit in February 2007, rejecting the family's claim that MySpace has a legal duty to protect its young users from sexual predators. U.S. District Judge Sam Sparks also ruled that interactive computer services like MySpace are immune from such lawsuits under the Communications Decency Act of 1996."

My earlier coverage of the trial court's ruling appeared in this post from February 14, 2007.
Posted at 08:51 AM by Howard Bashman



"Supreme Court to consider Ten Commandments vs. 'Seven Aphorisms'; Must a city park that displays one monument also permit others'?" David G. Savage has this article today in The Los Angeles Times.

Today in The Washington Post, Robert Barnes has an article headlined "With the Commandments, Must City Make Room?"

Joan Biskupic of USA Today reports that "Court to consider rules on religious displays."

Pamela Manson of The Salt Lake Tribune reports that "Tenet display dispute heads to high court; Justices to hear Utah city's appeal over exhibition of faith group's monolith."

And The Deseret Morning News reports that "Justices to hear Pleasant Grove tablets case; Top court to decide city's monument dispute."

My most recent post about this dispute, which this blog began covering in July 2002, appeared yesterday at this link.
Posted at 08:42 AM by Howard Bashman



"Judges can still punish acquitted defendants; In refusing to consider a Wisconsin man's appeal, the Supreme Court says jurists can issue prison sentences even if the jury has cleared a defendant of certain crimes": Today in The Los Angeles Times, David G. Savage has an article that begins, "The Supreme Court declined Monday to reconsider a legal rule that might surprise most Americans: Judges can punish defendants for certain crimes even after a jury has acquitted them of those charges."
Posted at 08:34 AM by Howard Bashman


"Gitmo detainee charged in embassy bombings; A military prosecutor swore out new death-penalty charges against a Guantanamo captive for war court trial in a U.S. Embassy bombing in East Africa": Carol Rosenberg has this article today in The Miami Herald. And on Friday of last week, she had an article headlined "Navy Lawyer: Gitmo trials pegged to political campaign."

The New York Times reports today that "Guantanamo Detainee, Indicted in ’98, Now Faces War Crimes Charges."

The Washington Post reports that "Detainee Is Charged With Capital Murder in Embassy Bombing."

And The Los Angeles Times reports that "Pentagon pursues Guantanamo tribunal for embassy bombing suspect; Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani was indicted by a federal grand jury in 1998 -- so why a military trial? critics ask."
Posted at 08:23 AM by Howard Bashman



"Shades of Gray: Barack Obama has gotten past affirmative action. Have we?" Dahlia Lithwick has this jurisprudence essay online at Slate.
Posted at 08:19 AM by Howard Bashman


"Administration Rebuffed on House Office Search": Linda Greenhouse has this article today in The New York Times.

Today in The Washington Post, Robert Barnes and Susan Schmidt report that "As Jefferson Ruling Stands, Prosecutors Feel Stymied; Justices Decline to Review Decision Against FBI Raid on Congressman's Office, Raising Fears Over Other Inquiries."

David G. Savage of The Los Angeles Times reports that "Supreme Court stays out of congressional search dispute; FBI agents had seized documents in Louisiana Rep. William Jefferson's office as part of a graft investigation."

The Washington Times reports that "Supreme Court refuses to listen to Jefferson case."

The Times-Picayune of New Orleans reports that "Court ruling critical of Jefferson raid stands; FBI overstepped its bounds in House."

And at "SCOTUSblog," Lyle Denniston has a post titled "Government rebuffed on Capitol Hill searches."
Posted at 08:13 AM by Howard Bashman



"Colorado Petition Draws Charges of Deception": This article about the Colorado Civil Rights Initiative appears today in The New York Times.
Posted at 08:04 AM by Howard Bashman


"Oral Argument in DC v. Heller: The view from the Counsel Table." David Kopel has this interesting post at "The Volokh Conspiracy."
Posted at 07:58 AM by Howard Bashman


"Bush Softens on Spy Bill; Overhaul of FISA May Rest on Move Toward Compromise": This article appears today in The Wall Street Journal.
Posted at 07:50 AM by Howard Bashman



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Half the Sins of Mankind

Heh. Indeed.

Hit & Run

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