A Friday Potpourri
From the crap tables of Las Vegas to the corridors of power in Washington; from North Carolina's lacrosse fields to a federal courthouse in Tampa, Bench Conference brings you today the world of the law, such as it is. No single major story worth a half-dozen graphs of coverage of commentary. But there was this....
The Los Angeles Times' second of a three-part series on judicial ethics-- or the lack thereof in Las Vegas-- is just as powerful as Part I was yesterday. Today's piece focuses upon federal judge James C. Mahan who, according to the fine reportage of Michael J. Goodman and William C. Rempel of the Times, "first as a state judge and now as a federal judge, he has approved more than $4.8 million in judgments and fees during more than a dozen cases in which a recent search of court records found no statement that he disclosed his relationships with those who benefited from his decisions." Can you imagine what folks must be talking about in the corridors of Nevada"s courthouses?
Meanwhile, the Washington Post has a story this morning advancing the battle between Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Arlen Specter (R-Pa.) and Vice President Dick Cheney, who responded to the former's angry letter earlier this week with a snippy letter of his own on Thursday. And despite the big hint from the White House that he ought to buzz off, Sen. Specter is still trying to get Congress onto the scoreboard in the domestic surveillance arena, offering the White House a compromise that some critics no doubt will see as a cave-in.
Also, there is another wave of defense spin in the Duke Lacrosse rape case. Attorneys for the accused including in a court filing yesterday plenty of nuggets designed to make front-page news in the area from which potential trial jurors will be culled. The defense claims that prosecutors misled the judge about the strength of the case. Prosecutors haven't yet responded, either in court or in public.
And, finally, there is the cute legal story making the rounds about a federal judge in Tampa who is making attorneys in a civil case play the children's game of "rock, paper, scissors" to determine where a deposition ought to be held. Now, if we could get Cheney and Specter to play a high-stakes game of "rock, paper, scissors" to determine the scope of the NSA's surveillance program we'd really have something. Bet it would be huge on cable.
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Posted by: SandyK | June 9, 2006 08:00 PM
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