Casey Mattox discusses Houston subpoenas and the SCOTUS same-sex marriage issue with Matthew Hawkins and Andrew Walker (audio)alliancealert.org
AbovetheLaw: Crain’s New York Business has a story about the new two-year program at New York Law School. NYLS is offering a two-year program that will charge (wait for it) two years’ worth of tuition to complete . . .
Ed Whelan at NRO: He [Ted Cruz] then asked Pillard whether “you were arguing that if a State decides to teach abstinence-only, that that decision by State and local officials in your judgment may well be unconstitutional and it is an appropriate role for a Federal court to strike down a State or local government’s decision to teach abstinence-only” (58:5-10). Pillard’s flat—and brazenly false—answer: “No, Senator Cruz.” (58:11)
TaxProf Blog: The sky is falling on legal education say the pundits, and preparing “practice ready” graduates is the best strategy for surviving the fallout. This is a millennialist version of the argument for clinical legal education that dominated discussion in the law schools in the 1960s and 1970s.
Will Baude at the Volokh Conspiracy: Last week I asked whether Presidents have a stronger obligation to obey domestic law than they do to obey international law, and suggested at least one argument for that view.
California Lawyer: But rather than take the case to a conventional lawyer, Gallucci decided instead to work with Stanford Law School, which had just started a first-of-its-kind Religious Liberty Clinic.
Adam Liptak at NY Times: The San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus sang “Give ’Em Hope” for a revered and in some ways surprising guest who shared a California stage with them last month: Justice Anthony M. Kennedy.
AP: Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is performing a same-sex wedding this weekend in what is believed to be a first for a member of the nation’s highest court.
Volokh Conspiracy: At the Originalism Blog, Prof. Michael Ramsey, a leading academic expert on constitutional war powers, has an excellent post on the implications of the original meaning for the constitutionality of an attack on Syria without congressional authorization (quoting, in part, from a 2011 post he wrote during the debate over the Libya conflict) . . .
The Hill: President Obama’s frequently rocky relationship with the judicial branch has emerged as a major obstacle to his second term goals.
WTOP.com: A federal judge has ordered the Pittsylvania County Board of Supervisors to pay a woman’s legal fees in her battle over prayers at public meetings.
Omaha.com: One of three finalists for the Iowa Court of Appeals faced an unusual — critics say inappropriate — question during a public interview: Had she violated marriage vows made to her husband, former State Auditor David Vaudt?
NewsObserver.com: State appeals court Judge Sam Ervin IV – who fought an extremely expensive but unsuccessful campaign against incumbent N.C. Supreme Court Justice Paul Newby last year – announced Tuesday his candidacy for another seat on the Supreme Court.
Allied Attorney Bill Becker appeared on Dr.James Dobson’s Family Talk Radio: You may not see them, but every day there are people on the front lines defending the rights of Christians in the public square. Hear from an attorney who is dedicated to fighting for religious liberty in the courts. Be encouraged by his quest to uphold America’s foundational freedoms and learn how to defend your family’s rights!
Bloomberg: Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg hailed the U.S. Supreme Court’s incremental approach on gay marriage, blamed her colleagues for inviting a deluge of political spending — and suggested she’s ready to spar over those issues for years to come.
AP: Obama says students do most of their classroom learning in the first two years of law school. He says the third year would be better spent clerking for a judge or working in a law firm.
National Review Bench Memos: Kansas governor Sam Brownback has nominated his chief counsel, Caleb Stegall, to fill an opening on the Kansas Court of Appeals. The Kansas City Star reports . . .
Law.com: Chapman University School of Law is being renamed The Dale E. Fowler School of Law following a $55 million donation from its new namesake. The gift appears to be the second-largest ever to a U.S. law school, after a donation of more than $100 million to the University of Arizona’s law school in the late 1990s by alumnus and broadcasting executive James E. Rogers.
Law.com: The country’s newest law school is welcoming its inaugural class of students. Orientation at the Indiana Tech Law School kicks off on Wednesday, when the students will show up at a new $15 million building on the university’s Fort Wayne campus.
Providence Journal: With an easy conversational style and good humor, Kagan told of the justices not being technologically sophisticated themselves. They communicate by memo on thick, ivory paper that is delivered by chambers aides. “The court hasn’t even gotten to email.” The court reaches decisions around a table in a conference room referred to as the “black box” because not even clerks are allowed inside, she said.
Blog of the Legal Times: After a year clerking for a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, Philip Alito, son of Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito Jr., will begin as an associate at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher this fall.
AP: . . . NAACP President and CEO Benjamin Jealous said a broader coalition is needed to fight the civil rights battles of the 21st century. “Last century we needed lawyers; this century we need big, broad coalitions,” he said.
Tax Prof Blog: As of 08/08/13, there are 385,358 Fall 2013 applications submitted by 59,426 applicants. Applicants are down 12.3% and applications are down 17.9% from 2012.
Atlanta J. Constitution: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
NJ.com: Gov. Chris Christie’s newest nominee to the state Supreme Court can expect to get a hearing in the state Senate, though no date has been set, Senate President Stephen Sweeney said today.
Law.com: The American Bar Association is loosening its reins on law schools following years of criticism that its myriad rules have driven up the cost of a legal education and discouraged experimentation.
AP: The U.S. Supreme Court is making decisions that should be left to Congress or the people, from wiretapping to “inventing” new classes of minorities, Justice Antonin Scalia said Monday.
Jonathan Adler at the Volokh Conspiracy: UNC’s Bernard Burk has an interesting new paper on changes to the legal profession and legal job market, “What’s New About the New Normal: The Evolving Market for New Lawyers in the 21st Century.” Here’s the abstract . . .
Jonathan Adler at Volokh Conspiracy: Earlier this summer, the Environmental Law Institute’s Environmental Forum featured a cover story on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit by Doug Kendall and Simon Lazarus of the Constitutional Accountability Center entitled “Broken Circuit.” As the sub-head promised, this article made the case that “A new breed of activism on the Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit — for environmental cases second in importance only to the Supreme Court and the central venue for high-profile lawsuits — threatens decades of progress.”
Corley, Pamela, Collins, Paul M. and Hamner, Jesse, The Influence of Amicus Curiae Briefs on U.S. Supreme Court Opinion Content (2013). APSA 2013 Annual Meeting Paper. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2300505
FedSoc Blog: The president’s proponents hope that if he succeeds in staffing the court with enough judges of his own choosing, then he may not only preserve his regulatory agenda for the next three years, but perhaps even entrench a progressive regulatory zeitgeist in the court for years to come.
Blog of the Legal Times: For the second year in a row, the District of Columbia court system’s annual Law Day festivities on May 1 included an hour-long Twitter Q&A session with the chief judges of the city’s trial and appellate courts. A new survey shows local judges aren’t alone in getting more comfortable with social media, although they aren’t in the majority, either.
The Recorder: Attorneys for both Abbott Labs and SmithKline Beecham filed new briefs Wednesday on whether gays and lesbians can be excluded from juries via peremptory challenge.
Politico: The U.S. government has appealed a district court ruling that struck down the Supreme Court’s ban on protests on court grounds.
National Review Bench Memos: Away on the National Review cruise to Norway, I noted with interest that President Obama nominated to the Ninth Circuit two lawyers from the Munger, Tolles & Olson law firm, Michelle T. Friedland and John B. Owens. As this article notes, a previous Obama appointee to the Ninth Circuit, Paul J. Watford, was also at Munger, Tolles & Olson when he was nominated.
AP: In her order, Ballew explained the change by saying that “`Messiah’ is a title that is held only by Jesus Christ.”
NJ.com: Gov. Chris Christie said today he will not renominate New Jersey Supreme Court Justice Helen Hoens because he expected legislative Democrats would have kept her in limbo or blocked her altogether. In a surprise move, Christie appointed Camden County Superior Court Assignment Judge Faustino J. Fernandez-Vina to replace Hoens.
The Missouri Times: Mary Rhodes Russell began her two-year term as Chief Justice of the Missouri Supreme Court in July. The Missouri Times sat down with Russell for a Q&A about her background, her thoughts about the office, as well as her ideas for improving Missouri’s court system.
Ryan T. Anderson Christian Post: The Court got the case wrong. While there is little of value in the majority opinion, the three dissenting opinions signal the path that marriage proponents should take from here.
Tennessean: Hedy Weinberg, executive director of the ACLU of Tennessee said that a Tennessee judge should not have barred a couple from naming their child “Messiah.”
Daily Journal: The legal community isn’t doing enough to attract the country’s finest into its ranks, said U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony M. Kennedy in a speech Saturday evening in San Francisco.
Alan Sears at Charisma News: These are the victories that are subtly shaping what tomorrow will look like in the world where our children and grandchildren live out their lives and faith. Please join me in praying for our attorneys and for all those standing firm—in cases “big” and “small”—for the right to live openly, gracefully and thoughtfully for Christ in their community.
Des Moines Register: A national organization that opposes same-sex marriage may have violated state law by not disclosing its donors in its fight to oust Iowa Supreme Court justices, ethics officials said Thursday.
Linda Greenhouse at NY Times: Americans have undoubtedly learned more in the past couple of months about the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court and its extensive powers than in the previous 35 years of the court’s existence. But it shouldn’t have taken the renegade intelligence analyst Edward J. Snowden to let us in on a fact that, while hardly secret, had been little noticed: in establishing the court, Congress gave the authority to name its judges to one individual, the chief justice of the United States.
Blog of the Legal Times: Shon Hopwood’s unique career in the law has taken a dramatic new turn. The onetime jailhouse lawyer who served time in federal prison for robbing banks has been hired as a 2014 law clerk for Judge Janice Rogers Brown of the prestigious U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.
NewsAdvance.com: A magistrate judge has recommended that the county award Barbara Hudson $53,230 in attorney’s fees from the case. U.S. Magistrate Judge Robert S. Ballou made the recommendation to Federal Judge Michael Urbanski in a report last week. The American Civil Liberties Union of Virginia defended Hudson in the case that was brought last year.
SCOTUS Blog: Mounting a strong counter-attack to attempts by the Obama administration and others to give federal courts new powers of supervision over Texas voting laws, officials of the Lone Star State have told a three-judge district court in San Antonio that it cannot impose that regime at this stage, or at any point unless there is new proof of “rampant” racial bias in election procedures in the state.
Trial Insider: Idaho’s Republican Senator Mike Crapo “was not consulted on the decision and is not happy with the nomination,” said Judd Deere, Crapo’s spokesman. [update] Deere says both he and Sen. James Risch, R-Idaho, are “evaluating” how to proceed.
Washington Times: Sen. Tom Coburn, Oklahoma Republican and Congress‘ top waste-watcher, said 150 judges for the federal appeals court based in Richmond last month held their conference at the Greenbrier resort in West Virginia, spending $270 a night per room — and, Mr. Coburn said, leaving the court closed for business on a Friday.
Wendy McElroy at the Future of Freedom Foundation: California Senate Bill 131 is the latest volley in the political campaign against religious and private educational institutions, especially Catholic ones.
Wall Street Journal (via Google): Hell hath no fury like a lawyer scorned, or so it seems in Kansas, where Republican Gov. Sam Brownback is taking abuse for having the temerity to select a judicial nominee for a vacancy on the state’s Court of Appeals. According to the state bar association and its allies at the George Soros-funded Justice at Stake, Mr. Brownback should have to broadcast his shortlist of judicial nominees before he makes a selection.
Above the Law: The top-line findings of the ABA draft report hit on pretty much all of the problems with legal education. But it’s still an open question whether the ABA will actually do anything about this report. I’ll tell you what I find out while I’m at their annual meeting next week, assuming I make it back alive… The ABA Journal summarizes the draft of the Task Force report. All your favorite law school memes are here . . .
Blog of the Legal Times: The Senate and the White House used the last day before the month-long summer congressional recess to move on a slate of judicial and U.S. Justice Department positions, including Stuart Delery to lead the DOJ Civil Division.
Topeka Capitol Journal: Nancy Moritz, a Kansas Supreme Court justice from Topeka, has been nominated by the Obama administration for a position on the Denver-based 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. | Official Bio and list of opinions | Hat tip: How Appealing
Washingtonian: The signing bonus for clerks at major firms is $280,000. Most start at the third-year-associate level or higher, bringing their base salaries close to $200,000. Not including the vast resources firms dedicate to training them, that means each is a nearly half-million-dollar gamble—and not a very safe one.
The Recorder (Law.com): Obama nominated Munger partners Michelle Friedland, 41, and John Owens, 42, to the Ninth Circuit on Thursday.
Wall Street Journal: Senate Panel Splits on Judge Nominee
Daniel Henninger at Wall Street Journal: The U.S. has a system of checks and balances. Mr. Obama is rebalancing the system toward a national-leader model that is alien to the American tradition. To create public support for so much unilateral authority, Mr. Obama needs to lessen support for the other two branches of government—Congress and the judiciary. He is doing that.
The Hill: Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) is planning to block a top executive nomination over concerns about how ObamaCare will apply to Capitol Hill.
The Hill: House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) slammed Attorney General Eric Holder after an investigation by Goodlatte’s committee reported discrepancies between Holder’s congressional testimony and decision to approve a search warrant for emails from Fox News Correspondent James Rosen.
AP: The Senate is ready to approve President Barack Obama’s choice to be the next ambassador to the United Nations, a day after a nail-biting marathon vote frayed but kept intact the chamber’s recent bipartisan spirit toward nominations.
ABC27.com: Attorney General Kathleen Kane is firing back at Gov. Tom Corbett over the defense of Pennsylvania’s law that effectively bans same-sex marriage and says it isn’t the governor’s job to tell the attorney general what the office’s duties and obligations are.
David Davenport writes at Forbes: The Supreme Court’s Gay Marriage Decisions Reverberate Through The States
NY Times: Here’s one: May gays be excluded from juries on account of their sexual orientation? The federal appeals court in California will soon decide the issue, which turns out to be surprisingly knotty.
Simon Lazarus at the New Republic: On its final two days, June 25 and 26, Chief Justice John Roberts and his colleagues—”the most conservative” set of justices ever—delivered four intensely anticipated decisions. When the dust settled, progressives had scored two unambiguous wins: The Court struck down the Federal Defense of Marriage Act, and it left standing a lower court’s decision striking down California’s ban on same-sex marriage. A third case yielded a stand-off that felt like a win, because a huge loss had been expected: The University of Texas’ race-conscious admissions regime was remanded for further review . . .
AP: Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg says she’s not surprised that Southern states have pushed ahead with tough voter identification laws and other measures since the Supreme Court freed them from strict federal oversight of their elections.
Above the Law: Who will follow in their footsteps? We have some new goodies for devotees of SCOTUS law clerk hiring. Keep reading for a look at (1) the official list of Supreme Court clerks for October Term 2013, courtesy of the Court itself; (2) our unofficial list of OT 2013 clerks, with law school and prior clerkship information; and (3) an updated list of October Term 2014 hires thus far. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has hired multiple clerks for OT 2014, suggesting that she’s not going anywhere….
Carrie Severino at NRO Bench Memos: As I have written before, and Ed Whelan has documented in detail, President Obama’s ongoing effort to confirm three new judges to the D.C. Circuit is little more than a naked attempt to pack the Court with activists who will rubber stamp his unconstitutional administrative agenda. The Court already has the lowest caseload in the nation, and, if anything, trends show that their workload is decreasing.