How Appealing

Friday, March 25, 2005

“In Solomon’s Absence: The Schiavo case made bad law and good politics.” Daniel Henninger has this essay today in The Wall Street Journal.

Posted at 10:35 PM by Howard Bashman

Is this stick longer than that rock is heavy? Today, Tenth Circuit Judge Michael W. McConnell issued an interesting concurring opinion in a case that presents the question “whether the State of Kansas may require members of a Kansas Indian tribe to register and title their vehicles with the State if they drive off-reservation on Kansas roads and highways.” The opinion reminds me that you just don’t see that many cars titled in Singapore driving on highways in the United States.

Posted at 10:30 PM by Howard Bashman

Available online from An article reports that “Schiavo Case Demonstrates Growing Tension Between Courts, Congress.”

Tony Mauro reports that “Top Attorneys Tapped for High Court Tech Cases.” According to the article, the lawyers arguing the cases have all either clerked at the U.S. Supreme Court or wirelessly blogged from there. And in related coverage, Marcia Coyle reports that “Broad View of Broadband Sought at High Court.”

Finally, Deborah C. England has an essay entitled “The Nuclear Option: Changing Senate rules on filibusters would be bad policy — and bad law.”

Posted at 10:28 PM by Howard Bashman

“Commandments display OK’d; House endorses them in government, school buildings; Senate will wait for court ruling”: This article appears today in The Detroit News.

Posted at 10:15 PM by Howard Bashman

Don’t digitize the chili: Sure, finding a human finger in a bowl of chili is tasteless, but then so is finding humor in the situation by blending that story (which I haven’t previously mentioned here) with another news story (which I have covered plenty in recent days).

In case others haven’t been following the news out of San Jose closely either, here’s a quick rundown.

On Wednesday, The San Jose Mercury News reported that “Woman claims to find finger in eatery’s chili.” Yesterday, that newspaper reported that “It’s official: That was a finger in chili.” And today, the newspaper provides a news update headlined “Coroner unsure if finger cooked or placed in chili bowl later.”

Meanwhile, The San Francisco Chronicle yesterday contained a front page article headlined “Wendy’s diner finds human finger in her chili.” And today, the newspaper reports that “Authorities seek hand with a missing finger.”

Posted at 9:10 PM by Howard Bashman

“Schiavo’s parents get ’emergency hearing’; Father says she is ‘down to her last hours'”: provides this news update. The emergency hearing referse to a hearing in a state court in Clearwater, Florida scheduled for 5:30 p.m. today.

Posted at 4:58 PM by Howard Bashman

“The Barnes Foundation Seeks Fast Resolution To Anti-Move Appeal”: Today in The Legal Intelligencer, Asher Hawkins has an article (subscription required) that begins, “Seeking to expedite appellate litigation triggered by the appeal of a man previously denied amicus standing in the matter, the Barnes Foundation has filed a King’s Bench petition with the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, asking the justices to assume jurisdiction over the Superior Court appeal of Jay Raymond, a former Barnes student and teacher.”

I am quoted in the article:

Bashman said he intends to respond to the Barnes’ petition once he has had a chance to fully review it.

“The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania is certainly not a trial court, and it sounds like the foundation is trying to bring in, for lack of a better word, evidence that is not subject to cross-examination – allegations that somehow, financial promises [might] not be kept [if Raymond’s appeal continues on its current schedule] – and that evidence has not been tested in any court,” Bashman said.

The King’s Bench petition will only create additional delays in resolution of the matter, Bashman said, as it will create “uncertainty as to where the appeal will be heard.”

After the Superior Court of Pennsylvania on March 8, 2005 issued an order allowing this appeal to be heard on the merits (details here), counsel for The Barnes Foundation was quoted here in The Philadelphia Inquirer as stating that “Nothing that has happened will affect the Barnes Foundation’s ability to move forward.” By contrast, yesterday — sixteen days after the Superior Court denied the motion to quash the appeal — lawyers for The Barnes told Pennsylvania’s highest court that unless the appeal is resolved as soon as possible, The Barnes will face serious financial peril. And for that reason, lawyers for The Barnes argue, Pennsylvania’s highest court should wrest jurisdiction over the case from Pennsylvania’s intermediate appellate court. Ironically, The Foundation’s unsuccessful motion to quash filed in the Superior Court delayed the merits briefing schedule in that court by forty days.

You can access at this link the “Emergency Application of The Barnes Foundation for Exercise of King’s Bench and/or Extraordinary Plenary Jurisdiction by this Court” filed yesterday in the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, and the supporting affidavits here, here, and here.

Also yesterday, while simultaneously trying to get the appeal kicked upstairs to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, The Barnes Foundation filed a motion to expedite the briefing schedule on appeal in the Superior Court. The briefing schedule was issued seventeen days ago, and the Brief for Appellant is currently due twenty-three days from today.

Posted at 3:30 PM by Howard Bashman

“Neb. High Court Upholds Infant Blood Tests”: The Associated Press reports here that “The Nebraska Supreme Court upheld a state law Friday that requires mandatory blood testing of newborn babies, rejecting an appeal by a couple who said it violates their religious beliefs.”

You can access today’s ruling of the Supreme Court of Nebraska at this link.

Posted at 3:03 PM by Howard Bashman

BREAKING NEWS — Seventh Circuit holds constitutional the display of the framed text of the King James version of the Ten Commandments as one of nine historical texts and symbols that comprise a “Foundations of American Law and Government Display” in the County Administration Building in Elkhart County, Indiana: You can access today’s ruling of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit at this link.

Circuit Judge Diane S. Sykes wrote the majority opinion, in which Chief Judge Joel M. Flaum joined. Circuit Judge Frank H. Easterbrook dissented on the ground that he would have dismissed the case for want of standing instead of resolving the case on its merits. The beginning of Judge Easterbrook’s dissent, however, makes quite clear that he likely would agree with the majority on the merits if he believed it appropriate to reach the merits.

More background about the case can be found in a newspaper article that The Goshen (Ind.) News published March 30, 2004 under the headline “Ten Commandments ordered removed from county display.”

Some may recall that an earlier Ten Commandments monument in Elkhart County met a different fate in the Seventh Circuit in late 2000.

Posted at 1:35 PM by Howard Bashman

By a vote of 7-4, en banc Ninth Circuit panel rules that an assignee who holds an accrued claim for copyright infringement, but who has no legal or beneficial interest in the copyright itself, cannot institute a lawsuit for infringement: You can access today’s ruling at this link. Interestingly, one of the disagreements between the majority and two of the dissenters is whether today’s ruling creates a circuit split: the majority says “no”; the dissenters say “yes.”

Posted at 1:28 PM by Howard Bashman

The audio files from yesterday’s Ninth Circuit en banc oral arguments are now available online for download: To download the oral argument audio from yesterday’s en banc argument in Yahoo! Inc. v. La Ligue Contre Le Racisme Et L’Antisemitisme, click here (Windows Media format).

And to download the oral argument audio from yesterday’s en banc argument in United States v. Ameline, click here (Windows Media format).

Posted at 11:55 AM by Howard Bashman

“Politically Appealing: Congress gives aggrieved plaintiffs a new last resort.” Jacob Sullum has this essay online today at Reason.

Posted at 11:00 AM by Howard Bashman

BREAKING NEWS — “Federal Judge Nixes Schiavo’s Feeding Tube”: The Associated Press reports here that “A federal judge on Friday refused to order the reinsertion of Terri Schiavo’s feeding tube, yet another setback for the parents of the brain-damaged woman in their battle against her husband to keep her alive.”

You can access this morning’s ruling of the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida at this link.

And via FindLaw, you can access here Michael Schiavo’s successful opposition filed yesterday in the U.S. Supreme Court to Terri Schiavo’s parents’ request for a stay.

Posted at 7:54 AM by Howard Bashman

“Why Schiavo’s Parents Didn’t Have a Case”: CBS News legal analyst Andrew Cohen has this op-ed today in The Los Angeles Times.

Posted at 7:10 AM by Howard Bashman