Tag Archives: Circuit Court of Appeals

Judicial Ac-tea-vism

From THE PROGRESS REPORT at THINK PROGRESS:

Yesterday, a conservative district court judge appointed by President Ronald Reagan ruled that the individual mandate in the Affordable Care Act is unconstitutional, arguing further that, since he believes the mandate is “inextricably linked” to the rest of the measure, the entire law must be unconstitutional. “The act, like a defectively designed watch, needs to be redesigned and reconstructed by the watchmaker,” Judge Roger Vinson wrote. The ruling, however, contradicts 14 other court decisions, the opinion of over 100 law professors, not to mention recent polling showing that Americans want the law to be either protected or expanded. There is also a distinctly political aspect to the ruling. Vinson acknowledged borrowing heavily in his opinion from a brief written by the right-wing group Family Research Council, and he seemed to give a shout-out to the Tea Party in his ruling, which has long targeted health care reforms as “economic Marxism.”

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Supreme Wackadoodle

From the ledger-enquirer:

So-called “birther” attorney Orly Taitz has resubmitted an application to the U.S. Supreme Court, asking that $20,000 in sanctions imposed by a federal judge in Columbus be reversed.

Taitz has represented two people in Columbus who questioned their military orders on arguments that President Barack Obama couldn’t legitimately hold office. It was the case of Capt. Connie Rhodes that led U.S. District Court Judge Clay Land to sanction Taitz after he warned her and then gave her a time limit to explain why he shouldn’t fine her.

The sanctions came in October 2009, and Taitz appealed to the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta. That court upheld the sanctions in May, and Taitz sent an application for stay to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas on July 8.

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GOP: How do you solve a problem like Maria? Oops, make that Sonia.

From POLITICO:

President Barack Obama’s first Supreme Court nominee, Second District Appeals Court Judge Sonia Sotomayor, began taking hits from the right as her nomination was announced Tuesday morning, with top conservatives describing her as a hardline liberal who would impose her personal agenda on the Court.

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee called Sotomayor’s appointment “the clearest indication yet that President Obama’s campaign promises to be a centrist and think in a bipartisan way were mere rhetoric.”

(And by the way, kids, he didn’t even get her name right when he started bitching and moaning about her. He called her Maria.)


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Bye Bye Bybee

Jay Bybee has been a federal judge in the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in  Las Vegas for 6 years.  He was little noticed until the release of a memo written by Bybee when he was head of the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel.  The memo gave protection to what the Bush administration called harsh interrogation and what others call torture.  Liberal groups have called for Bybee’s impeachment.

The techniques excused by Bybee included waterboarding, sleep deprivation, beatings, and confinement in small boxes. In 2002, Bybee advised the Central Intelligence Agendy that they could use the tactics against Abu Zubaydah, a leader of al-Qaida.  Bybee said that the techniques were not torture, because there was “no intent to cause severe pain or suffering.”


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The Poop on Justice

From the Los Angeles Times:

A closely watched obscenity trial in Los Angeles federal court was suspended Wednesday after the judge acknowledged maintaining his own publicly accessible website featuring sexually explicit photos and videos.

Alex Kozinski, chief judge of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, granted a 48-hour stay in the obscenity trial of a Hollywood adult filmmaker after the prosecutor requested time to explore “a potential conflict of interest concerning the court having a . . . sexually explicit website with similar material to what is on trial here.”


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