How Appealing

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

"[M]ore research will be needed to establish whether failures to report or return have properly been categorized by this and most other courts as crimes of violence." Is failing to report to jail on time to begin serving a criminal sentence a "crime of violence"? Circuit Judge Richard A. Posner today issued this interesting opinion on behalf of a unanimous three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit.
Posted at 11:58 PM by Howard Bashman


"CIA Defends Document Secrecy at Trial": The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "The CIA cannot reveal 'alternative interrogation methods' used on terrorists because doing so would cause exceptionally grave damage to national security by telling enemies how the agency gathers intelligence, the government has told a judge."
Posted at 11:42 PM by Howard Bashman


On this evening's broadcast of NPR's "All Things Considered": The broadcast contained audio segments entitled "University of Michigan Head Balances Law, Diversity" and "Michigan School Announces New Admissions Rules" (RealPlayer required).
Posted at 11:40 PM by Howard Bashman


"5 years after detainees' arrival, policy questions remain": Carol Rosenberg of McClatchy Newspapers provides a report that begins, "Only a few reporters and military escorts were allowed to observe the airstrip at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, the afternoon of Jan. 11, 2002, when the U.S. military cargo plane touched down bearing its bizarre and scary cargo: 20 men in day-glo orange jumpsuits, chains and masks."
Posted at 11:34 PM by Howard Bashman


"Rights of Unions and Nonmembers Vie at Court": Linda Greenhouse will have this article Thursday in The New York Times.

In Thursday's edition of The Washington Post, Robert Barnes will report that "Justices Hear Case on Right of Unions to Use Nonmembers' Dues."

Stephen Henderson of McClatchy Newspapers reports that "Court unlikely to grant 1st Amendment rights to union political activity."

And at law.com, Tony Mauro reports that "Supreme Court Shows an Anti-Union Hand."
Posted at 11:25 PM by Howard Bashman



Excellent news from the D.C. Circuit: This evening, the following email arrived from Chief Judge Douglas H. Ginsburg of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit:
On November 22, 2006 your blog "How Appealing" called our attention to the confusion surrounding the D. C. Circuit's resolution of the rehearing petition filed in Abigail Alliance for Better Access to Dev. Drugs v. Von Eschenbach, 445 F.3d 470 (D.C. Cir.), panel reh'g denied, 469 F.3d 129 (D.C. Cir.), judgment vacated and reh'g en banc granted, No. 04-5350 (D.C. Cir. Nov. 21, 2006). You correctly observed that the published panel decision denying rehearing was immediately available on the Court's website but the unpublished en banc Court's order granting rehearing was not readily available to the public until the following day and then only to those who have accounts with the federal judiciary's PACER electronic docket service and pay a fee.

As a result of your blog, I asked the Court at a recent meeting to change our practice. I am pleased to report that the Court adopted a policy of publishing all orders that grant panel rehearing or that grant rehearing en banc. Consequently, in the future, such orders will be available to the public, immediately and without charge. Thank you for bringing this matter to the attention of the court.

This is truly excellent news, and I thank Chief Judge Ginsburg for bringing this change in practice to the attention of this blog's readers. My post from November 22, 2006 refereced in Chief Judge Ginsburg's email can be accessed at this link.
Posted at 11:20 PM by Howard Bashman


Thanks for a wonderful evening: Just wanted to thank my dinner and pre-dinner companions for a wonderful evening here in Washington, DC.
Posted at 11:12 PM by Howard Bashman


The Associated Press is reporting: An article reports that "Appeals Court to Hear S.D. Abortion Case." My earlier coverage of yesterday's development appears at this link.

And an article reports that "Federal Court Says 'Alpha Dog' Can Open."
Posted at 04:38 PM by Howard Bashman



"Supreme Court Considers Union Spending": This audio segment (RealPlayer required) featuring Dahlia Lithwick appeared on today's broadcast of NPR's "Day to Day."
Posted at 04:33 PM by Howard Bashman


"The Brennan Memos: Brennan on abortion." Jim Newton has this jurisprudence essay online today at Slate.
Posted at 04:30 PM by Howard Bashman


Greetings from Washington, DC: The U.S. Supreme Court has posted online at this link its ruling today in Norfolk Southern R. Co. v. Sorrell, No. 05-746.

In news coverage, The Associated Press reports that "High Court Rules on Railroad Negligence."

Today's oral argument transcript in Zuni Public School Dist. v. Department of Education, No. 05-1508, can be accessed here.

And today's oral argument transcript in Davenport v. Washington Ed. Assn., No. 05-1589, can be accessed here.

In news coverage, The AP reports that "Supreme Court Hears Union Fees Lawsuit."
Posted at 04:20 PM by Howard Bashman



Programming note: I'll be traveling to Washington, DC this afternoon in connection with a work-related matter that will require my presence there on Thursday and Friday. This evening, I'll be visiting with a couple of friends in the mainstream media, one of whom was so kind as to pick up my Justice Anthony M. Kennedy bobblehead doll from The Green Bag's headquarters in Virginia.

Additional posts will appear online later today.
Posted at 12:30 PM by Howard Bashman



The Daily Journal of California is reporting: In today's newspaper, Lawrence Hurley reports that "9th Circuit Renomination Prolongs Calif., Idaho Battle."

And Brent Kendall reports that "Justices Reject 'Blakely' Follow-Up."
Posted at 11:10 AM by Howard Bashman



"Ninth Circuit asked to rehear Boy Scout appeal en banc": The Boy Scouts of America organization has issued this press release. You can access the rehearing petition at this link.

My earlier coverage of the divided three-judge panel's decision in the case can be accessed here. On December 26, 2006, the three-judge panel issued an order suggesting that at least one judge on that court believes that the case may be a good candidate for rehearing en banc.
Posted at 10:35 AM by Howard Bashman



Today's opinions of note from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit: Circuit Judge Martha Craig Daughtrey is the author of all three for-publication opinions that the Sixth Circuit issued today.

In the first of those three decisions, the Sixth Circuit has ruled that the so-called "ministerial exception" precludes subject matter jurisdiction over a woman's claim that her termination from employment as a resident in a hospital's Clinical Pastoral Education program violated the Americans with Disabilities Act. You can access the decision at this link.

A second decision addresses when the equitable doctrine of laches may be raised as a defense in a copyright infringement suit given that Congress has prescribed a specific limitations period during which actions under the statute may be brought. The Sixth Circuit's answer is that laches may sometimes, if only rarely, be raised as a defense to an otherwise timely copyright infringement lawsuit. You can access the decision at this link.

The third and final decision issued today overturns the dismissal on summary judgment of a lawsuit alleging that a Michigan police officer violated the federal civil rights of a man, while placing him under arrest, when applying a choke hold that caused the man's death. The second to last paragraph of the opinion states, "When the facts in this case are viewed in the light most favorable to the plaintiff, it is clear that Partee posed no threat to the officers or anyone else. It follows that the use of the neck restraint in such circumstances violates a clearly established constitutional right to be free from gratuitous violence during arrest and is obviously inconsistent with a general prohibition on excessive force." You can access the opinion at this link.
Posted at 10:28 AM by Howard Bashman



"Smuggling Deaths Deliberations to Resume": The Associated Press provides this report from Houston.
Posted at 10:14 AM by Howard Bashman


"High Court Sorts Through Challenge on Union Fees": This audio segment (RealPlayer required) featuring Nina Totenberg appeared on today's broadcast of NPR's "Morning Edition."
Posted at 10:12 AM by Howard Bashman


"Court rules on rail injury dispute": Lyle Denniston has this post at "SCOTUSblog."

According to Lyle's post, the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling today in Norfolk Southern R. Co. v. Sorrell, No. 05-746, was the only decision issued today in an argued case. The case was argued on October 10, 2006, and you can access the oral argument transcript at this link.

Update: "SCOTUSblog" provides access to the ruling via this link.
Posted at 10:07 AM by Howard Bashman



"Court limits testimony of first live witness in Microsoft trial; A lawyer says the move will not affect the antitrust case against the software giant": This article appeared last Friday in The Des Moines Register. Counsel for the plaintiffs now have a web site providing free access to the trial transcripts from the case.
Posted at 08:32 AM by Howard Bashman


"Prosecutors offer glimpse of People v. Lord Black": The Toronto Globe and Mail contains this article today.
Posted at 08:27 AM by Howard Bashman


"Search stops at teen's skull; The bullet in a suspect's head may link him to a shootout, but Texas police are blocked from retrieving the slug": This article appears today in The Los Angeles Times.
Posted at 08:17 AM by Howard Bashman


"Death row inmate's lawyer says his client was framed; The attorney requests that Kevin Cooper's case be returned to a lower court for further review": Today in The Los Angeles Times, Henry Weinstein has this article about a case argued yesterday before a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
Posted at 08:15 AM by Howard Bashman


"Restore workers' constitutional rights": This editorial about a case to be argued this morning before the U.S. Supreme Court appears today in The Washington Times.
Posted at 08:05 AM by Howard Bashman


"Death Penalty Showdown; Killer's Defense Cleared To Call Prosecutors To Testify In A Legal Test For State's Law": The Hartford Courant today contains an article that begins, "Setting the stage for a unique hearing, defense lawyers for a convicted killer have been given approval to call the state's top prosecutors to the witness stand as part of an effort to show the state's 34-year-old death penalty law is unconstitutional."
Posted at 08:00 AM by Howard Bashman


"[Ana Marie Cox's] alleged elusiveness has triggered yet another delay in the juicy Washingtonienne court case." So reports The Washington Post's Reliable Source column today.
Posted at 07:55 AM by Howard Bashman


"Benched Nominees: President Bush takes a welcome step back from judicial brinkmanship." This editorial appears today in The Washington Post.
Posted at 07:50 AM by Howard Bashman


"Jane Bolin, the Country's First Black Woman to Become a Judge, Is Dead at 98": The New York Times contains this obituary today.
Posted at 07:45 AM by Howard Bashman


"Appeals Court Weighs Padilla Charge": The Associated Press provides a report that begins, "A federal appellate court is weighing whether to restore the only charge against alleged al-Qaida operative Jose Padilla that carries a sentence of up to life in prison. The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals was set to hear arguments Wednesday over the conspiracy charge that was dismissed in August by a judge who ruled it was essentially the same as two other terrorism-support counts against Padilla and two co-defendants."
Posted at 07:42 AM by Howard Bashman


"Supreme Court refuses to rule on man's 47-year sentence for rape": This article appears today in The Seattle Times.
Posted at 07:40 AM by Howard Bashman


"Jersey judge up for circuit court post; Hillman is expected to be Bush's nominee": The Newark (N.J.) Star-Ledger yesterday contained an article that begins, "President Bush is expected to nominate Noel Hillman, a longtime prosecutor and a newly appointed federal judge in New Jersey, to an opening on the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals." You can access the official Federal Judicial Center biography for U.S. District Judge Noel L. Hillman at this link.
Posted at 06:50 AM by Howard Bashman


"High court backs MedImmune; Paying user fees doesn't bar Md. firm from suing patent holder": This article appears today in The Baltimore Sun.
Posted at 06:48 AM by Howard Bashman


"4 white flags fly in courts fight; With the Senate in the hands of Democrats, the most controversial of Bush's judicial nominees are withdrawn": David G. Savage and Henry Weinstein have this article today in The Los Angeles Times.

In The San Francisco Chronicle, Bob Egelko reports today that "Bush's 9th Circuit pick withdraws his nomination; But president bypasses opportunity to end Senate impasse over another court opening."

The Clarion-Ledger of Jackson, Mississippi reports that "Bush selection for federal appeals court post under fire."

The Sun Herald of Biloxi, Mississippi reports that "Bush nominates 2 in Mississippi for judgeships; Cochran, Lott back nominee."

The News & Observer of Raleigh, North Carolina reports that "Bush drops push for Boyle; No renomination to appeals bench."

And The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports that "Face of U.S. court of appeals may shift."
Posted at 06:45 AM by Howard Bashman



"The Harsh Wages of Sin: Why Genarlow Wilson is Languishing in Prison." Sherry F. Colb has this essay online today at FindLaw.
Posted at 06:30 AM by Howard Bashman


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