How Appealing

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

"Justices' First Brush With Global Warming": Linda Greenhouse will have this article Thursday in The New York Times.
Posted at 10:50 PM by Howard Bashman

"Federal Oversight of Banks Risks Abuse, States Argue": The Washington Post on Thursday will contain an article that begins, "All 50 states and the District of Columbia yesterday urged the Supreme Court to overturn lower court rulings that they said would give federal authorities the ability to block states from prosecuting financial institutions for predatory lending practices."
Posted at 10:48 PM by Howard Bashman

"Court considers role of U.S. in regulating emissions; Vote may turn on issue of 'imminent' harm": Joan Biskupic will have this article Thursday in USA Today.

And Bill Mears of reports that "Global warming debate hits Supreme Court."
Posted at 10:44 PM by Howard Bashman

"Judge limits Gates' Iowa visits as trial begins": The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "Microsoft Corp. Chairman Bill Gates must travel to Iowa only once to defend his company in a class-action antitrust case beginning Thursday that accuses him of running a monopoly that overcharged Iowans millions of dollars."
Posted at 10:40 PM by Howard Bashman

"Supreme Court tackles global warming": The San Francisco Chronicle provides this news update.
Posted at 10:33 PM by Howard Bashman

"Court considers if the EPA can regulate greenhouse gas emissions": Stephen Henderson of McClatchy Newspapers provides this report.

And James Rosen of McClatchy Newspapers reports that "Supreme Court referees dispute between Wachovia, state regulators."
Posted at 10:20 PM by Howard Bashman

"The Wronged Man: Unjustly Imprisoned and Mistreated, Khaled al-Masri Wants Answers the U.S. Government Doesn't Want to Give." This lengthy article appears today in The Washington Post.
Posted at 10:15 PM by Howard Bashman

"Financier Armstrong's Contempt Term Upheld; New Judge, Hearing Ordered; Case is second in a year that 2nd Circuit has reassigned from New York judge": provides this report. My earlier coverage is at this link.
Posted at 09:58 PM by Howard Bashman

"Supreme Court Takes up Global Warming Case": This segment (transcript with link to audio) appeared on this evening's broadcast of the PBS program "The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer."
Posted at 09:54 PM by Howard Bashman

"Eyes on Kennedy as Supreme Court Debates Global Warming Case":'s Tony Mauro provides this report.
Posted at 08:00 PM by Howard Bashman

On this evening's broadcast of NPR's "All Things Considered": The broadcast contained audio segments entitled "Supreme Court Hears EPA Auto Emissions Case" (featuring Nina Totenberg) and "Has the Move to Make Cars Greener Stalled?"

RealPlayer is required to launch these audio segments.
Posted at 07:50 PM by Howard Bashman

"U.S. Apologizes to Mistaken Terrorism Suspect": The Washington Post provides a news update that begins, "The U.S. government has agreed to pay $2 million to an Oregon lawyer who was wrongfully arrested as a terrorism suspect because of a bungled fingerprint match and has issued an apology for the 'suffering' inflicted on the attorney and his family."

The newspaper also provides access to the federal government's apology note and a copy of the settlement agreement.
Posted at 07:44 PM by Howard Bashman

"Supreme Court Takes Up Global Warming Case": Linda Greenhouse of The New York Times provides this news update.
Posted at 07:35 PM by Howard Bashman

"Benchwarming: The Supreme Court melts down over greenhouse gasses." Dahlia Lithwick has this Supreme Court dispatch online at Slate.
Posted at 07:30 PM by Howard Bashman

"Justices closely split on greenhouse gases": David G. Savage of The Los Angeles Times provides this news update.

In news coverage and commentary that preceded this morning's U.S. Supreme Court oral argument, The San Diego Union Tribune reports today that "High court dips its toe into global warming; Landmark case may put heat on California."

And The Austin American-Statesman reports today that "Texas backs EPA in high court case; Agency doesn't think it should limit carbon dioxide emissions."

The Sacramento Bee contains an editorial entitled "Supremes take the heat: Court to decide if EPA must regulate CO2."

The San Francisco Chronicle contains an editorial entitled "A global court case."

The Dallas Morning News contains an editorial entitled "Justices: Compel EPA to enforce Clean Air Act."

In The Denver Post, columnist Al Knight has an op-ed entitled "Colo. stands by in global warming case."

In The Daily Journal of California, Timothy J. Dowling has an op-ed entitled "Court Must Make EPA Do Its Job on Global Warming."

And CBS News legal analyst Andrew Cohen has a post-argument essay entitled "Not So Hot To Trot: Supreme Court Wraps Up Unpromising Showdown Over EPA Regulation Of Greenhouse Gases."
Posted at 05:48 PM by Howard Bashman

Second Circuit rejects Fourth Amendment challenge asserted by ferry riders commuting between Grand Isle, Vermont and Plattsburgh, New York to practice of searching carry-on baggage of randomly selected passengers and inspecting randomly selected vehicles, including their trunks, pursuant to federal Maritime Transportation Security Act of 2002: You can access today's ruling of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit at this link.
Posted at 05:05 PM by Howard Bashman

"'Borat' proves unlucky for real Kazakh TV crew": The Cleveland Plain Dealer today contains an article that begins, "It wasn't funny being a real TV reporter from Kazakhstan trying to cover Ohio's recent elections - at a time when the nation's top box-office comedy featured a fake Kazakh TV reporter humiliating Americans." The article goes on to note that "It didn't help that the Kazakh cameraman's first name was 'Bolat.'" (Via "Obscure Store").
Posted at 04:10 PM by Howard Bashman

"Supreme Court Hears Global Warming Arguments": This audio segment (RealPlayer required) featuring Dahlia Lithwick appeared on today's broadcast of NPR's "Day to Day."
Posted at 03:55 PM by Howard Bashman

"[T]he stated position of the Executive Branch is that due process is satisfied so long as it tells you the law; trust it, for it is under no obligation to show you the law." Counsel for John Gilmore today filed the Reply Brief for Petitioner in support of the pending petition for writ of certiorari in Gilmore v. Gonzales, a case that you can learn much more about at this link.

According to the Reply Brief filed today:

The brief in opposition is one part legal argument, and nine parts obfuscation. The legal argument only serves to emphasize the importance of the question presented: the stated position of the Executive Branch is that due process is satisfied so long as it tells you the law; trust it, for it is under no obligation to show you the law. BIO 12-13. That is not correct: due process requires publication of the law itself. The disagreement framed by the case over whether the legal rule must be published or may be conveyed less formally is clear; certiorari should be granted here to decide the issue.
Additional legal documents, including the federal government's Brief in Opposition, can be accessed via this link.
Posted at 03:50 PM by Howard Bashman

Third Circuit rejects "alter ego" test, in favor of applying "functional" test, in evaluating claims of absolute legislative immunity: Today's ruling affirms a federal district court's refusal to dismiss on defendants' motion for judgment on the pleadings, based on the defense of common law legislative immunity, a woman's suit alleging that she was discharged from her position as a legislative assistant to a state representative in violation of her First and Fourteenth Amendment rights. Circuit Judge D. Brooks Smith delivered the opinion of the court.
Posted at 03:24 PM by Howard Bashman

Access online the transcript of today's U.S. Supreme Court oral argument in Watters v. Wachovia Bank, N.A., No. 05-1342: The transcript can be accessed at this link.
Posted at 03:08 PM by Howard Bashman

"Supreme Court takes up global warming case": The Boston Globe provides this news update.

And Frank Davies of the MediaNews Washington Bureau reports that "Supreme Court gingerly enters global-warming debate."
Posted at 03:04 PM by Howard Bashman

Forthcoming speaking appearance: On Tuesday, December 5th, 2006, I'll be at Yale Law School in New Haven, Connecticut to speak at a Federalist Society-hosted panel on law blogging. Also scheduled to speak at the event are Law Professor Jack M. Balkin, of "Balkinization," and Law Professor Glenn Harlan Reynolds, of "Instapundit."

The event is slated to begin at 6:10 p.m. next Tuesday and is open to the public. I've made plenty of blog-related trips up to Harvard Law School, but this is my first to Yale, so I'm especially looking forward to it.
Posted at 02:48 PM by Howard Bashman

Get your global warming oral argument transcript, hot off the press: The transcript of today's U.S. Supreme Court oral argument in Massachusetts v. EPA, No. 05-1120, can be accessed at this link.
Posted at 02:18 PM by Howard Bashman

"Global Warming Dispute Divides U.S. Supreme Court": Greg Stohr of Bloomberg News provides this report.

And Reuters reports that "Supreme Court hears first global warming case."
Posted at 02:15 PM by Howard Bashman

The Associated Press is reporting: Now available online are articles headlined "Court Debates National Bank Regulation"; "Court: Ex-Ill. Gov. Free During Appeal"; and "Wrongly Accused Man Settles Bomb Suit."
Posted at 02:05 PM by Howard Bashman

"Are we being fusspots and nitpickers in trying (so far with limited success) to enforce rules designed to ensure that federal courts do not exceed the limits that the Constitution and federal statutes impose on their jurisdiction?" So asks Seventh Circuit Judge Richard A. Posner today in an opinion issued on behalf of the majority on a three-judge panel.

In a portion of the ruling in which only Judge Posner and now-Chief Judge Frank H. Easterbrook have joined, Judge Posner writes:

[T]he lawyers have wasted our time as well as their own and (depending on the fee arrangements) their clients' money. We have been plagued by the carelessness of a number of the lawyers practicing before the courts of this circuit with regard to the required contents of jurisdictional statements in diversity cases. It is time, as we noted in BondPro, that this malpractice stopped. We direct the parties to show cause within 10 days why counsel should not be sanctioned for violating Rule 28(a)(1) and mistaking the requirements of diversity jurisdiction. We ask them to consider specifically the appropriateness, as a sanction, of their being compelled to attend a continuing legal education class in federal jurisdiction.

Are we being fusspots and nitpickers in trying (so far with limited success) to enforce rules designed to ensure that federal courts do not exceed the limits that the Constitution and federal statutes impose on their jurisdiction? Does it really matter if federal courts decide on the merits cases that they are not actually authorized to decide? The sky will not fall if federal courts occasionally stray outside the proper bounds. But the fact that limits on subject-matter jurisdiction are not waivable or forfeitable--that federal courts are required to police their jurisdiction--imposes a duty of care that we are not at liberty to shirk. And since we are not investigative bodies, we need and must assure compliance with procedures designed to compel parties to federal litigation to assist us in keeping within bounds. Hence Rule 28 and hence the responsibility of lawyers who practice in the federal courts, even if only occasionally, to familiarize themselves with the principles of federal jurisdiction. It would be delightful, but irresponsible in the extreme, for us to ignore the limits on our jurisdiction, forget the rules intended to prevent us from ignoring those limits, direct the Clerk of the court to tear out the parties' jurisdictional statements before distributing the briefs to us, and jump directly to the merits of any case that the parties would like to litigate in federal court.

In a separate opinion concurring in the judgment on the merits, Circuit Judge Terence T. Evans writes:
I decline to join the court's stinging criticism of the attorneys regarding their less-than-perfect jurisdictional statements. Sure, the plaintiffs should have said the amount in controversy exceeds $75,000, not that it is $75,000. And sure, both sides stumbled on their declarations regarding the dual citizenship of the corporate defendants. But, at best, these are low misdemeanors; yet the court treats them like felonies. I would not label these minor flaws as "blunders," nor would I come close to saying this is "malpractice" which must be stopped. Also I would not issue an order to show cause, and I certainly would not suggest that an appropriate sanction might be to compel the lawyers' attendance at "a continuing legal education class on federal jurisdiction."

What happened in this case is not particularly unusual. The plaintiffs, represented by what appears to be a small law firm, filed this suit almost five years ago in state court where jurisdictional requirements are easily satisfied and rarely questioned. The defendants, represented by a "national law firm with lawyers in 27 offices coast-to-coast" (according to the firm's Web site) removed the case to federal court. That there is diversity jurisdiction has never been questioned by anyone, including at least two district court judges who issued written decisions as the case poked along for four years through discovery and several in-court proceedings. The plaintiffs then lose their case on summary judgment and file an appeal raising the issue that cuts to the very heart of their suit. Given this situation, when all eyes are really on the guts of the case, I think we should be more tolerant of the jurisdictional statement hiccups that have occurred here.

You can access the complete ruling at this link

If you'd like to link directly to this Seventh Circuit ruling but are unfamiliar with the unique difficulties inherent in linking directly to that court's decisions, please refer to the specific instructions I provided in this recent earlier post.
Posted at 01:22 PM by Howard Bashman

"Analysis: Kennedy key to global warming challenge." Lyle Denniston has this post online at "SCOTUSblog."
Posted at 01:12 PM by Howard Bashman

"Alleged Torture Victim Speaks to Press": The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "Khaled el-Masri, who claims the CIA tortured him at a prison in Afghanistan, said Wednesday he believes an explanation of what happened to him by the U.S. government would help prevent others from suffering a similar fate."

The article goes on to note that "A federal appeals court in Richmond, Virginia, heard arguments Tuesday by his attorneys that a lawsuit he filed against the former head of the CIA should be reinstated."
Posted at 11:45 AM by Howard Bashman

"Court allows suit over e-mails": The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today contains an article that begins, "In a legal decision that troubles some free-speech advocates, the Georgia Supreme Court has ruled against a woman who complained in e-mails about the care her mentally disabled son was receiving through a nonprofit organization that provides resources to families with disabled members. In a 4-3 decision, the court ruled that the Georgia Community Support and Solutions Inc. lawsuit against Shirley Berryhill can proceed and that her e-mails criticizing the organization are not protected by Georgia's anti-SLAPP (Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation) statute, which is intended to shield whistleblowers and people who speak up at public forums."

You can access yesterday's ruling of the Supreme Court of Georgia at this link.
Posted at 11:40 AM by Howard Bashman

"End Unfair Limits On Prisoner Lawsuits": The Detroit Free Press today contains an editorial that begins, "Federal laws have made it unreasonably difficult, and sometimes impossible, for Michigan prison inmates to file successful civil rights lawsuits in federal court. The U.S. Supreme Court recently heard arguments on appeals from three inmates that could strike down some of the worst restrictions."
Posted at 11:33 AM by Howard Bashman

"High Court Takes Up Global Warming Case": The Associated Press provides this early report on this morning's recently-concluded oral argument.
Posted at 11:32 AM by Howard Bashman

"City Wants Out from Cross Case": The Voice of San Diego today provides a report that begins, "The city of San Diego is asking a federal judge to extricate it from the latest skirmish in the 17-year legal battle over the fate of the Mount Soledad cross. In court papers filed earlier this month, the city asked U.S. District Court Judge Barry Ted Moskowitz to dismiss it as a defendant in a lawsuit that claims the transfer of the cross to the federal government is unconstitutional."
Posted at 11:30 AM by Howard Bashman

"Ginsburg in the nude?" Syndicated columnist James J. Kilpatrick today has an essay that begins, "Let us suppose, to be supposing, that an enterprising pornographer decides to seek a new market for his dirty pictures. He surmises, correctly, that law students have minds as dirty as the minds of, say, journalism students. So he puts together a law review filled with photographs of nekkid ladies."
Posted at 11:25 AM by Howard Bashman

"Inmate abortion access parsed; Court appeal looks at transportation rules": This article appears today in The Arizona Republic.

And The Arizona Daily Star today contains an article headlined "Arpaio's lawyer: Jail can refuse rides for abortions; Wants court to restore county transport policy."
Posted at 11:20 AM by Howard Bashman

"U law school roiled by professor's hiring; Work as federal lawyer on terror memo cited": The St. Paul Pioneer Press today contains an article that begins, "Robert Delahunty looked like the perfect fill-in to teach a constitutional law class next term at the University of Minnesota. He had broad federal legal experience, and an impressive resume and was available in a pinch. But U officials apparently didn't realize that Delahunty also co-authored one of the most controversial legal opinions from the nation's war on terror and that hiring him could prompt criticism on campus. Now, some U students and professors are questioning Delahunty's selection to teach next term. Law school leaders plan to meet today with students but made clear on Tuesday that Delahunty is their choice."

The Minnesota Daily reported yesterday that "New hire controversial; Delahunty co-authored a memo to President Bush containing legal advice concerning al-Qaida."

And Inside Higher Ed reports that "Appointment Roils a Law School."

You can access Law Professor Robert Delahunty's online bio at this link.
Posted at 11:05 AM by Howard Bashman

"Board settles gender bias suit; Coach to get $50,000, lawyers, $340,000": The Birmingham News today contains an article that begins, "Lawyers for teacher Roderick Jackson and the Birmingham Board of Education settled Tuesday night a 5-year-old gender-discrimination lawsuit that went to the U.S. Supreme Court in 2005, lawyers for both sides said."
Posted at 10:50 AM by Howard Bashman

Blogging about logging: The Seattle Post-Intelligencer today contains an article headlined "Supreme Court hears antitrust suit against Weyerhaeuser" that begins, "The lawyer for a now-defunct sawmill told the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday that timber giant Weyerhaeuser Co. broke federal antitrust laws by overpaying for more logs than it needed and then cutting its prices on the finished lumber used to make guitars and furniture."

And The Oregonian reports today that "High court looks at NW timber bids; Weyerhaeuser appeals ruling that it drove up prices to kill competition."

Yesterday, The Seattle Times previewed the case in an article headlined "Alder case cuts at antitrust."
Posted at 10:45 AM by Howard Bashman

"Harassed worker turns to high court": The Portland Press Herald today contains an article that begins, "A Portland man hopes the U.S. Supreme Court will do what a Maine jury would not, and let him seek damages from his former employer, Jordan's Meats."
Posted at 10:38 AM by Howard Bashman

Duly noted: Having one's blog linked at Slashdot produces lots of visitors in very little time.
Posted at 10:30 AM by Howard Bashman

"Kansas Outlaws Practice Of Evolution": The Onion today provides this report.
Posted at 10:23 AM by Howard Bashman

"Supreme Court to Take Up Global Warming": The Associated Press provides this report.

And on today's broadcast of NPR's "Morning Edition," Nina Totenberg had an audio segment entitled "High Court to Hear Greenhouse-Gas Case" (RealPlayer required).
Posted at 10:20 AM by Howard Bashman

"Lesbian's custody rights are upheld; Virginia backs rulings by Vermont courts in a dissolved civil union": The Los Angeles Times today contains an article that begins, "A Virginia appellate court ruled Tuesday in a closely watched lesbian custody dispute that the biological mother must answer to the laws of Vermont, where she and her former partner entered into a civil union and raised a child together. The ruling skirted a broader question key to the national debate: whether Virginia can be forced to recognize such a union sanctioned in another state."

The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports today that "Va. sends custody fight to Vermont; Civil-union ruling could be appealed to Va. high court."

And The Rutland Herald contains an article headlined "Court: Custody case belongs in Vt."

My earlier coverage appears at this link.
Posted at 08:55 AM by Howard Bashman

"Blind woman sees future in law; UVa student uses technology, smarts in studies": This article appeared Monday in The Daily Progress of Charlottesville, Virginia.
Posted at 08:50 AM by Howard Bashman

"Pelosi Won't Pick Tainted Lawmaker for Key Post ": The New York Times today contains an article that begins, "Representative Nancy Pelosi announced on Tuesday that she would not award the chairmanship of the House Intelligence Committee to Representative Alcee L. Hastings of Florida, who was a leading contender for the post."

The Washington Post today contains a front page article headlined "Hastings, Harman Rejected for Chairmanship; Pelosi Decides Against Both of House Intelligence Panel's Top Two Democrats."

The Los Angeles Times reports that "Hastings won't chair intel panel, Pelosi says; With top Democrats out, an outsider may be named to the key post."

The Wall Street Journal reports "Pelosi Moves to End Quarrel Over Intelligence Post; Speaker-in-Waiting Says She Won't Name Hastings, Who Was Once Impeached" (free access).

Josh Gerstein of The New York Sun reports that "Pelosi Rejects Hastings as Intelligence Chairman."

McClatchy Newspapers report that "Pelosi rejects Hastings for leadership position."

The Washington Times reports that "Hastings denied top intelligence seat."

And The South Florida Sun-Sentinel reports that "Hastings loses bid for chairmanship of U.S. House Intelligence commiittee."
Posted at 08:45 AM by Howard Bashman

"Happy ending? Suit over Barney parody is settled." The Los Angeles Times today contains an article that begins, "Barney the purple dinosaur may sing about how much he loves you, but his corporate masters don't care much for Stuart Frankel."
Posted at 08:34 AM by Howard Bashman

"San Quentin's execution team is called incompetent; A brief filed on behalf of killer Michael Morales finds broad problems with death penalty cases": Henry Weinstein has this article today in The Los Angeles Times.
Posted at 08:32 AM by Howard Bashman

"FBI appoints veteran for criminal division": The Washington Times today contains an article that begins, "A veteran FBI supervisor who oversaw the investigation into the high-profile, unsolved death of a federal prosecutor in Baltimore was appointed yesterday to lead the criminal division of the bureau's Washington field office."

Next Monday will mark the three-year anniversary of the discovery of Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonathan Luna's dead body in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. The Baltimore Sun's coverage of the case can be accessed via this link.
Posted at 08:22 AM by Howard Bashman

"Few chances for lawyers to develop trial skills": This article appears today in The Boston Globe.
Posted at 08:15 AM by Howard Bashman

"'Super-Sealed' Excavation": Today in The Hartford Courant, Lynne Tuohy has an article that begins, "Forty court files remain 'super-sealed' four years after revelations that the judicial branch had concealed existence of many lawsuits, enraging lawmakers and the public. But more information about the cases trickled out Tuesday as a judge and lawyers for several litigants who have sued the court system over the practice try to solve the conundrum."
Posted at 08:14 AM by Howard Bashman

"A Slide Toward Segregation": Today in The Washington Post, columnist Ruth Marcus has an op-ed that begins, "A half-century after Brown v. Board of Education, it's come, amazingly, to this: The Supreme Court, in the name of preventing race discrimination, is being asked to stop local schools from voluntarily adopting plans to promote integration."
Posted at 08:07 AM by Howard Bashman

"Supreme Court to hear greenhouse warming case": Reuters provides this report.

The Boston Globe reports today that "High Court to hear case on auto pollution; Mass., other states challenge EPA."

And c|net reports that "Supreme Court to consider climate-change rules."

Meanwhile, in commentary, USA Today contains an editorial entitled "Justices can clear the air by telling EPA to do its job; Bush administration drags feet on climate change; world seeks solutions." In addition, Law Professor Jonathan Adler has an op-ed entitled "It's not up to the EPA; If global warming requires regulation, that is a decision for Congress to make."

And in The New York Sun, Thomas Bray has an op-ed entitled "Environmental Intervention Is In."
Posted at 08:05 AM by Howard Bashman

"Evidence Obtained In Unabomber Case": of San Francisco provides this report.

And The Associated Press reports that "Evidence Offers Insight Into Unabomber."
Posted at 08:00 AM by Howard Bashman

"U.S. Currency Discriminates Against Blind, Judge Rules": This article appears today in The New York Times.

And The Washington Times reports today that "Currency changes ordered to help blind."

My earlier coverage is at this link.
Posted at 07:54 AM by Howard Bashman

"Protecting Reporters' Phone Records": The New York Times today contains an editorial that begins, "A journalist's ability to protect the identity of confidential sources has been further eroded by the Supreme Court's refusal this week to stop a prosecutor from reviewing the telephone records of two New York Times reporters."
Posted at 07:45 AM by Howard Bashman

"Supreme Court Weighs the Meaning of 'Obvious'": Linda Greenhouse has this article today in The New York Times.

And today in The Los Angeles Times, Jim Puzzanghera reports that "High court puts patent standard to the test; Justices ponder the 'obviousness' gauge; Companies and the government take sides."
Posted at 07:44 AM by Howard Bashman

"Justices today tackle consumer protection; State regulators take on banking industry": This article appears today in USA Today.
Posted at 07:35 AM by Howard Bashman

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