Post-Hiatus Supreme Court Stuff…
It's been a long time, I shouldn't have left you... (Anyone who can finish that sentence wins a prize!) I have been on a bit of a hiatus while I concentrated on completing my fellowship at the Drum Major Institute for Public Policy. I apologize for my unannounced absence! On Monday, I will offer forth a longer reflection about my amazing experience at DMI as their civil justice fellow, and will resume blogging for TortDeform, although it will probably be less frequently than before.
In the mean time, I have come across several really interesting pieces surrounding the Sotomayor nomination, something that has generated a bit of discussion here on TortDeform. I thought I'd share a few highlights as a round up of sorts:
Erick Turkewitz has a few posts on Sotomayor. Most recently, he draws attention to a possible ethics issue from her solo practice years. He also blogs about a case coming to the Second Circuit regarding attorney ads and blogs. Sotomayor was on the panel that heard the case.
Today at ACS Blog, Prof. Kent Greenfield has posted a great piece, Souter and Empathy. He deconstructs the debate about Sotomayor and the empathy factor, based in part on his experience clerking for Souter. He makes the important distinction between how empathy impacts the way a judge feels and how it impacts the way a judge thinks. Obviously we don't want mushy judges who make decisions based on whether they feel sorry for or moved by a particular claimant, rather than based upon the law. But we absolutely do want judges who are able to engage in the intellectual excercise of empathy so as to ensure that the law is being applied in a fair and equitable way. I love this line from the post: "But in the absence of a Supreme Court that looks like America instead of a Harvard Law alumni luncheon, empathy is necessary to reach outcomes that are not only fair but well-reasoned." Check it out.
Ian Millhiser has also taken a brief hiatus from Overruled Blog. But no fear, he's still blogging at Think Progress. In terms of keeping us updated on the Supreme Court nomination he's been downright prolific. Today, he writes about the potential boycott of confirmation hearings and how bogus this is. He explains:
"Far from expediting Sotomayor’s confirmation process, Leahy set a schedule which is virtually identical to that enjoyed by Bush appointee John Roberts, even though Chief Justice Roberts’ record was more difficult to investigate because it was necessary to track down thousands of pages of documents Roberts produced while he worked in the Reagan and Bush I Administrations, and even though thousands of new documents relating to Roberts were uncovered just two weeks before his hearings began. Kyl’s threat to take his ball and go home if he doesn’t get his way is unfortunate, but it is hardly surprising."