How Appealing

Saturday, January 3, 2009

“Court action sought on Massey-Benjamin; Brief asks justices be barred from voting on cases involving large campaign contributors”: Wednesday’s edition of The Charleston (W. Va.) Gazette contained an article that begins, “In a brief filed this week, a coal company owner and his company asked the U.S. Supreme Court to make it illegal for a state Supreme Court justice to accept millions in campaign contributions from an individual and then vote on legal decisions involving that same individual.”

You can view the Brief for Petitioners, filed on Monday of this week, by clicking here.

Posted at 10:42 PM by Howard Bashman

“I’ll Have to Call My Lawyer”: The New York Times today contains an editorial that begins, “‘Good Samaritan’ laws give legal protection to bystanders who courageously come to the aid of people in emergencies. Last month, the California Supreme Court gave its state law a disturbingly narrow interpretation that could discourage future good Samaritans from providing help out of fear of being sued.”

Posted at 10:40 PM by Howard Bashman

“US appeals court pulls ruling on mirror ornaments”: The Associated Press provides a report that begins, “In an unusual move, a federal appeals court has withdrawn a decision that struck down a Michigan law aimed at restricting what can hang on rearview mirrors.”

Posted at 10:37 PM by Howard Bashman

“High court: Yelling at cops was protected speech.” The Associated Press provides a report that begins, “A man who yelled the ‘f’ word and other profanities at passing police officers did not commit a crime because he was protected by the constitutional guarantee of free speech, the South Dakota Supreme Court ruled Wednesday.”

And online at the First Amendment Center, David L. Hudson Jr. has an essay entitled “S.D. high court rules man’s cursing at cops was free speech.”

You can access Tuesday’s ruling of the Supreme Court of South Dakota at this link.

Posted at 10:35 PM by Howard Bashman

“Friends Mourn Death of Barbara McDowell of D.C. Legal Aid Society”: Tony Mauro has this post today at “The BLT: The Blog of Legal Times.”

Posted at 10:20 PM by Howard Bashman

“Scouts case sent to state high court; Leases with city are at center of dispute”: Today in The San Diego Union-Tribune, Greg Moran has an article that begins, “The state Supreme Court, after a nearly two-year delay, will be asked to determine whether city of San Diego leases of Balboa Park land violate the state constitution’s ban on government preference for religious groups. The move Wednesday by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which is hearing a lawsuit challenging the leases, is the latest turn in the long-running case. The appeals court action came with a scathing dissenting opinion warning that the court had made a serious and far-reaching error.”

My earlier coverage of Wednesday’s Ninth Circuit order appears at this link.

Posted at 10:15 PM by Howard Bashman

“Law Deans Are Said to Be Top U.S. Solicitor General Candidates”: Greg Stohr and James Rowley of Bloomberg News have a report that begins, “The first female deans of the Harvard and Stanford law schools are the top candidates to serve as Barack Obama’s voice at the U.S. Supreme Court, according to people familiar with the selection process. Harvard Law School Dean Elena Kagan, 48, and former Stanford Law School Dean Kathleen Sullivan, 53, are the two leading contenders for the position of solicitor general, a position informally known as the ‘tenth justice.’ For either, the job ultimately might be a step toward a seat on the Supreme Court itself.”

Posted at 10:12 PM by Howard Bashman

“Obama’s View on Power Over Detainees Will Be Tested Early”: Today in The New York Times, Adam Liptak has an article that begins, “Just a month after President-elect Barack Obama takes office, he must tell the Supreme Court where he stands on one of the most aggressive legal claims made by the Bush administration — that the president may order the military to seize legal residents of the United States and hold them indefinitely without charging them with a crime.”

Posted at 7:45 AM by Howard Bashman

“Khat — is it more coffee or cocaine? The narcotic leaf is a time-honored tradition in Africa but illegal in the U.S., where demand is growing.” This article appears today in The Los Angeles Times.

Posted at 7:44 AM by Howard Bashman