How Appealing

Monday, November 17, 2008

“Brown, Prop. 8 forces urge court to hear suits that would toss measure”: Bob Egelko of The San Francisco Chronicle has a news update that begins, “The likelihood of a final California Supreme Court showdown over same-sex marriage increased dramatically Monday when Attorney General Jerry Brown and the pro-Proposition 8 campaign urged the justices to decide whether the voter-approved ballot measure is constitutional.”

And Maura Dolan of The Los Angeles Times has a news update headlined “Atty. Gen. Jerry Brown urges high court to let Prop. 8 take effect; Brown’s office, which has the responsibility of defending the initiative, said it’s in the ‘public interest’ to let the gay-marriage ban take effect while lawsuits are reviewed.”

Posted at 10:44 PM by Howard Bashman

“Closing Guantanamo prison may force new rules for trying terrorists; Obama will have to find a new balance between civil liberties and national security”: Warren Richey will have this article Tuesday in The Christian Science Monitor.

Posted at 10:30 PM by Howard Bashman

“Human drama fills case called landmark on Internet”: The Associated Press provides a report that begins, “The case of U.S. vs. Lori Drew is viewed in legal circles as landmark Internet law, but as outlined in government documents with its neighborhood feuds and a teen’s suicide, it reads more like a plotline for a made-for-TV drama.”

Posted at 8:25 PM by Howard Bashman

“Judges throws out contempt order against reporter”: The Associated Press provides a report that begins, “A federal appeals court has thrown out a contempt order against a former USA Today reporter who refused to identify sources for stories about the 2001 anthrax attacks. Toni Locy has been appealing a judge’s order in March that required her to pay up to $5,000 a day unless she identified officials who discussed Steven J. Hatfill. That contempt order was thrown out Monday by a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.”

I have posted online at this link today’s order of the D.C. Circuit.

Posted at 6:15 PM by Howard Bashman

“Jury to start deliberating in Joyce case on Tuesday”: The Erie (Pa.) Times-News has an update that begins, “The case against former state Superior Court Judge Michael T. Joyce is now in the hands of the jury. However, the panel will not begin its deliberations until Tuesday morning.”

And The Associated Press provides a report headlined “Jury must decide if retired Pa. judge was injured” that begins, “A federal jury considering an insurance fraud case against a since-retired state appellate judge will have to decide if he lied about being injured in a car accident, suffered permanent damage or is a ‘hypersensitive’ patient who truly believed his life would never be the same.”

Posted at 5:47 PM by Howard Bashman

“Five Oral Argument Tips–For Judges”: After sitting by designation with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, U.S. District Judge Michael W. Mosman of the District of Oregon wrote a short article about how judges might improve their own performance at appellate oral argument.

The article appeared in the October 2008 issue of The Federal Lawyer, and Judge Mosman has kindly sent along an electronic copy of the article, which you can access by clicking here.

Posted at 3:42 PM by Howard Bashman

Access online the document by means of which “Porn Prosecutors Seek Recusal of Entire 9th Circuit”: In the November 7, 2008 issue of The Daily Journal of California, John Roemer had an article that begins, “Federal prosecutors have written to all 50 judges on the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, asking them to consider recusing themselves from hearing accused pornographer Ira Isaacs’ appeal. The rare move is further fallout from the disclosure in June that Chief Judge Alex Kozinski’s Web site contained sexually explicit images.”

When I had this post noting the existence of that article on November 7, 2008, I wrote: “If I can obtain electronic copies of the parties’ Ninth Circuit filings on the recusal issue, I will post them online.”

Although counsel for the parties in the United States v. Isaacs appeal have been particularly unhelpful in supplying me with these documents, I have managed to obtain two of the three relevant documents via other means.

I have today posted online both the federal government’s “Notice of Potential Need for Circuit-Wide Recusal” and the defendant’s “Opposition to Circuit Wide Recusal Notice.” The federal government also filed a reply to the defendant’s opposition, but I haven’t yet succeeded in obtaining a copy of that pleading. If and when I do obtain that pleading, I will promptly post it online here at “How Appealing.”

As of now, the Ninth Circuit’s electronic docket in the Isaacs appeal shows no sign of any rulings on the federal government’s recusal notice.

Posted at 3:25 PM by Howard Bashman

“Real-life experience: With the ‘four horsemen of addiction’ behind him, newly elected judge says he’s ready.” The Houston Chronicle today contains a front page article that begins, “The devil tattooed on Kevin Fine’s upper arm holds a razor blade, a mirror and an eight ball symbolizing cocaine. His forearm sports a tattoo of Jesus holding up a man who has collapsed amid the waves of a massive storm. Elected by Harris County voters as a state district judge this month, Fine said he’ll draw from his experiences as a cocaine addict who has been clean and sober for 10 years when presiding over felony cases.”

Posted at 2:45 PM by Howard Bashman

“Judge orders Hatfill search warrant made public”: Jesse J. Holland of The Associated Press has a report that begins, “A federal judge on Monday ordered the Justice Department to release the information it used to convince the courts to let it search the home of a former Army scientist who was exonerated in the 2001 anthrax attacks.”

You can access today’s ruling of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia at this link.

Posted at 12:17 PM by Howard Bashman

“Paralyzed Calif. man loses high court appeal”: The Associated Press provides a report that begins, “A paralyzed man who has sued hundreds of businesses over accommodations for the disabled lost his Supreme Court appeal Monday to get out from under a court order requiring special permission to file new lawsuits.”

Posted at 11:44 AM by Howard Bashman

“Court dismisses granted criminal case”: Lyle Denniston has this post at “SCOTUSblog.” Today’s order dismissing the writ of certiorari as improvidently granted in Bell v. Kelly, No. 07-1223, can be accessed here. The U.S. Supreme Court heard oral argument in the case last Wednesday, and you can access the oral argument transcript (which may reveal the reasons for today’s dismissal) at this link.

In addition, you can access at this link today’s Order List.

Posted at 10:09 AM by Howard Bashman

“A federal bailout for Prop. 8: A Colorado battle may offer a means of challenging California’s same-sex marriage ban.” Law Professor Brian E. Gray has this op-ed today in The Los Angeles Times.

Posted at 9:52 AM by Howard Bashman

“Who would Obama pick for the Supreme Court? Liberals hope the president-elect would name someone who could counter the court’s conservative justices; But Obama has hinted that he favors a more moderate choice.” David G. Savage has this article today in The Los Angeles Times.

Posted at 8:37 AM by Howard Bashman

“California death row dysfunction: For two decades, Thomas Francis Edwards has sat on death row for the murder of 12-year-old Vanessa Iberri; The wait is emotional torture for her father.” Carol J. Williams has this front page article today in The Los Angeles Times.

Posted at 8:33 AM by Howard Bashman

“Hub seeks federal judge’s recusal, citing ‘favoritism’; Trying a wrongful conviction lawsuit”: Today’s edition of The Boston Globe contains an article that begins, “Lawyers defending the Boston Police Department in a lawsuit filed by a man wrongly convicted of three rapes want a federal judge to recuse herself, saying remarks she made from the bench revealed ‘deep-seated favoritism and antagonism’ that make it impossible for her to be fair in the civil rights case.”

Posted at 8:02 AM by Howard Bashman

“5 years later, views shift subtly on gay marriage”: The Boston Globe today contains an article that begins, “When the Supreme Judicial Court handed down its landmark decision five years ago tomorrow allowing same-sex couples to wed in Massachusetts, opponents warned that traditional marriage would be endangered, while supporters envisioned an equality movement that would spread across the nation. Over 11,000 same-sex marriages later, neither has happened.”

Posted at 7:55 AM by Howard Bashman