Wednesday, November 1, 2006
"Court to reconsider huge tobacco lawsuit": Claire Cooper, legal affairs writer for The Sacramento Bee, provides a news update that begins, "The California Supreme Court said Wednesday it will consider reinstating a massive lawsuit to force the nation's leading tobacco companies to refund almost a decade's worth of proceeds from cigarette sales in the state."
Posted at 11:40 PM by Howard Bashman
"Ten Ways Blogs Boost a Law Firm's Image": Edward Poll has this essay online at law.com.
Posted at 11:38 PM by Howard Bashman
"Hecht joins state's top court": The Quad-City (Iowa) Times today contains an article that begins, "Gov. Tom Vilsack installed Daryl L. Hecht as the state’s 105th Supreme Court justice as friends and family watched him take oath of office and don his new robe in a solemn ceremony."
Posted at 11:37 PM by Howard Bashman
"Tydingco-Gatewood sworn in": The Pacific Daily News of Guam yesterday contained an article that begins, "Chief Judge Frances Tydingco-Gatewood, who was sworn in during a ceremony yesterday morning in the courtroom of the District Court of Guam, said she would like to strengthen the relationship between the federal and local court system on Guam, including joint training for court employees and the formation of joint task forces to track down fugitives and sexual predators."
Yesterday's newspaper also contained an editorial entitled "Kudos: Tydingco-Gatewood will do us all proud as District Court judge."
"High court questions Duke on pollution': The Charlotte Observer provides this news update.
Reuters reports that "US Supreme Court hears utility emission case."
Bill Mears at CNN.com provides a report headlined "Duke Energy dukes it out in Supreme Court; Company contends government pollution-control rule changes over past 25 years were 'arbitrary.'"
And MarketWatch reports that "Duke Energy defends plant upgrades before Supreme Court."
"Court wary of limit on punitive awards": Patti Waldmeir has this article today in Financial Times.
Posted at 11:22 PM by Howard Bashman
"From Bricks to Pajamas: The Law and Economics of Amateur Journalism." Law Professor Larry E. Ribstein has posted this article (abstract with link for download) at SSRN. The article's abstract begins, "Weblogs have proliferated rapidly in recent years, attracting significant attention and generating important legal issues. Yet there is so far no coherent economic framework for addressing these issues. This article begins to develop such a framework."
Posted at 06:35 PM by Howard Bashman
"The South Dakota Referendum on Abortion: Lessons from a Popular Vote on a Controversial Right ." Law Professor Dale A. Oesterle has this essay online at the Yale Law Journal's Pocket Part web site.
Also available online from the Pocket Part, Law Professor Richard L. Hasen has an essay entitled "Ending Court Protection of Voters from the Initiative Process."
"Detainees Challenge Military Trials Law": The AP provides this report.
Posted at 06:28 PM by Howard Bashman
The Associated Press is reporting: Now available online are articles headlined "Justices Question Clean-Air Plan" and "Supreme Court Ponders Retroactive Ruling."
Is the so-called "exclusionary rule" for unlawful searches and seizures too exclusionary? In an opinion issued today on behalf of a unanimous three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, Circuit Judge Frank H. Easterbrook argues "yes." Nevertheless, the opinion recognizes that "whether to trim the exclusionary rule in this fashion is a decision for the Supreme Court rather than a court of appeals."
Posted at 03:54 PM by Howard Bashman
"This appeal presents the issue of whether a foreign state's offer of a reward in return for information enabling it to locate and capture a fugitive falls within the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act's commercial activity exception to sovereign immunity. For the reasons that follow, we conclude that it does." So begins an interesting opinion that Circuit Judge Ed Carnes issued today on behalf of a unanimous three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit.
In the opinion, Judge Carnes writes: "Although our decision is not based on policy grounds, we think it worth noting that this is an instance in which the result the law requires coincides with good policy. Accepting Peru's position, dressed though it is in the clothing of sovereignty, would frustrate rather than further the ability of countries to carry out their sovereign functions. Anything that makes it easier for countries to welch on their promises to pay for information decreases the real value of any reward they offer and makes it less likely that an offer will be accepted. As Guevara has learned up to this point in the litigation, the promise of a multimillion dollar reward means little or nothing to an informant if the country offering the reward cannot be made to pay it. The holding Peru asks us to reach would jeopardize not only its vital interests but those of every country that offers rewards for information, including this country."
Today's decision reinstates a lawsuit filed in federal court in south Florida seeking recovery of a $5 million (USD) reward that the Republic of Peru had promised to pay for information leading to the capture of a fugitive from justice.
"Commentary: Crawford grows in stature?" Lyle Denniston has this post at "SCOTUSblog."
Posted at 02:55 PM by Howard Bashman
"High Court Appears Reluctant To Alter Punitive-Damage Law; Several Justices Suggest Philip Morris's Appeal Be Returned to Lower Court": Jess Bravin has this article (pass-through link) today in The Wall Street Journal.
Posted at 12:08 PM by Howard Bashman
"Withdrawing Consent in Maryland": This post appears today at the new law blog "Sex Crimes." My earlier coverage can be accessed at this link.
Posted at 10:55 AM by Howard Bashman
"Voter-ID case remains a mess as election nears": This article appears today in The Columbus Dispatch.
And The Cleveland Plain Dealer reports today that "Ohio voter ID law back in court today."
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit has now made its ruling yesterday on this subject, consisting of a separate opinion from each judge on the three-judge panel, available for download as a single PDF file.
"Reaching this new chapter in our death-penalty history, the majority decision cannot be reconciled with established precedent. It certainly fails the Constitution. This Court's seven to seven stalemate regarding the en banc petition, however, leaves this precarious decision intact." So writes Circuit Judge R. Guy Cole, Jr., in an opinion dissenting from an order denying rehearing en banc that the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit issued today. A total of five judges joined in that dissent. Ordinarily, federal appellate courts do not reveal the precise vote by which a petition for rehearing en banc was granted or denied.
"Supreme Court Hears Arguments in Air Pollution Case": This audio segment (RealPlayer required) featuring Nina Totenberg appeared on today's broadcast of NPR's "Morning Edition."
Posted at 10:04 AM by Howard Bashman
"Padilla Claims Military Gave Him LSD; So-Called 'Dirty Bomber' Accuses Government of Torture": ABC News provides this report.
Posted at 10:01 AM by Howard Bashman
"Justices support colleague at Kane defamation trial": The Chicago Tribune today contains an article that begins, "In a rare appearance as witnesses in a defamation trial, three Illinois Supreme Court justices and a former chief justice Tuesday rejected a newspaper's charges that a colleague inappropriately traded his vote for a political favor in a 2003 case."
The Chicago Sun-Times reports today that "Justices support chief in libel lawsuit; Columns called 'outrageous,' but testimony differs."
"Full appeals court hears McDermott taped-call dispute": The Associated Press provides this report.
Posted at 08:30 AM by Howard Bashman
"Law dean is smart, sexy": This article appears today in The Yale Daily News.
Posted at 08:15 AM by Howard Bashman
"U.S. officials to seek return of sex offender": The Toronto Globe and Mail today contains an article that begins, "The case involving an American convicted sex offender at the centre of a cross-border row will be in court again as justice officials seek to have him serve his sentence in his own country instead of Canada."
Posted at 08:14 AM by Howard Bashman
"Pelosi's Unintelligent Choice": U.S. Rep. Alcee L. Hastings (D-FL), removed from office as a federal district judge as a result of congressional impeachment, is the subject of this op-ed by columnist Ruth Marcus in today's issue of The Washington Post.
Posted at 08:07 AM by Howard Bashman
"Kansas AG Gets Abortion Clinic Records": The AP provides this report.
The Kansas City Star today contains an article headlined "Abortion politics a part of attorney general race; Reports show spending of almost $500,000 in efforts to oust Kline."
"Groups Defend Clinton-Era Air Program": The Associated Press provides this preview of the cases to be argued today in the U.S. Supreme Court.
Posted at 07:48 AM by Howard Bashman
In today's issue of The New York Sun: Josh Gerstein has an article headlined "New Battle Over Executive Privilege Is Looming in Washington" that begins, "A new executive privilege battle is looming in Washington as a federal appeals court considers whether to intervene in an election-eve dispute over records of visitors to Vice President Cheney's home at the Naval Observatory, as well as his offices in the White House complex."
Joseph Goldstein reports that "Debate Erupts Over Timing of Ruling On Gay Rites by Court in New Jersey."
And Thomas Bray has an op-ed entitled "Back to First Principles" that begins, "In 2003 the U.S. Supreme Court, in a split decision, ruled that the University of Michigan's undergraduate admissions systems amounted to an unconstitutional racial quota."
"What's The Matter With a False Arrest? The Supreme Court Considers the Statute of Limitations Defense." Sherry F. Colb has this essay today at FindLaw.
Posted at 07:33 AM by Howard Bashman
"High court debate could put cap on punishing jury awards; The outcome is likely to ride on justices Roberts and Alito, experts say": David G. Savage has this article today in The Los Angeles Times.
Today in USA Today, Joan Biskupic reports that "Supreme Court hears appeal of $79.5M judgment." In addition, the newspaper contains an editorial entitled "Let states regulate damages; Supreme Court treads on uncertain territory in curbing large payouts," while Robin S. Conrad has an op-ed entitled "Standards are essential; As lower courts fail to restrict outsized awards, ruling is needed."
And The Oregonian reports today that "High court weighs verdict in Oregon; The U.S. Supreme Court hears a smoker's case that could limit awards."