D.C. Circuit

  • Dred Scott

    Affirmative Action, Blogging, D.C. Circuit, Job Searches, John Roberts, Non-Sequiturs, U.S. News

    Non-Sequiturs: 06.03.13

    * Slave law is still considered “good law” by the courts? Originalism is alive and well! [Post & Found]

    * For the first time ever, the Washington Post’s scavenger hunt/riddle/prove how pretentious we are competition was won by a single individual. Congratulations to Sullivan and Cromwell’s Sean Memon, an ’08 Duke grad, who prevailed after figuring out that nothing was happening. That makes sense when you read the article. [Constitutional Daily]

    * Here’s an argument against affirmative action based on the premise that black people at the barest of margins may be hindered by having too good of a résumé. This is, well, wrong, but much more intellectual than the arguments against affirmative action advanced by the Chief Justice. [Ramblings on Appeal]

    * A San Diego lawyer is seeking a young attorney in L.A. to work for slightly more than peanuts. But the requirements are entertaining, like confidence that “you are going to be the next F. Lee Baily or Johnny Cochran.” The poster is also an “elderly gay man (late 50′s).” Is that really elderly anymore? [Craigslist]

    * More on the problems facing the D.C. Circuit. Probably a good reason to shrink the complement of the Circuit. [SSRN]

    * Another look at the business benefits of blogging. Get out there, people! [Likelihood of Confusion]

    * Hey there, lawyers! The Wall Street Journal would like you to know that you and your ilk are responsible for the student loan bailout. Video after ye olde jump…

    11 Comments / / Jun 3, 2013 at 5:15 PM
  • 220px-Sen_Chuck_Grassley_official-RF

    Barack Obama, D.C. Circuit, John Roberts, Judicial Conference, Judicial Nominations, Politics

    Senators Call For Shrinking Small, Overworked D.C. Circuit

    Republicans accuse President Obama of wantonly fulfilling his legal obligations.

    23 Comments / / May 30, 2013 at 2:42 PM
  • Amanda Bynes

    Biglaw, California, Celebrities, Constitutional Law, D.C. Circuit, Deaths, Education / Schools, Eric Holder, Federalist Society, Gay, Gay Marriage, Gender, Law Professors, Law School Deans, Law Schools, Litigatrix, Morning Docket, Police, Politics, Religion, SCOTUS, Shoes, Supreme Court, White House Counsel

    Morning Docket: 05.28.13

    * Let’s get ready to rumble! Some of the Supreme Court’s most controversial opinions yet are expected to be rolled out in the coming weeks — and maybe even today. Stay tuned for news. [CNN]

    * Let’s see what happens when Obama nominates three judges at once to the D.C. Circuit. How many of them will be confirmed as quickly as Sri Srinivasan? Probably not many. [New York Times]

    * White House counsel and leading litigatrix Kathryn Ruemmler is best known for her fabulous shoes, but this week, she’s taking some flak for her involvement in the IRS scandal. [New York Times]

    * “I don’t know whether the Lord Himself could get confirmed at this point.” It looks like poor Attorney General Eric Holder doesn’t have very many people left to turn to thanks to executive and congressional inaction. [Bloomberg]

    * When it comes to recent diversity efforts in Biglaw there’s an ebb, but not really a flow, and it’s all being blamed on the recession. Also, “diversity fatigue” is apparently a thing now. [New York Times]

    * The $200 million gender discrimination suit filed against Greenberg Traurig over the firm’s alleged “old boys club” has been settled for an undisclosed amount. You go girl! [Thomson Reuters News & Insight]

    * According to Judge Murray Snow, Arizona’s most beloved sheriff, Joe Arpaio, has been violating the constitutional rights of all of the Latinos whom he supposedly “hadn’t” been racially profiling. [Reuters]

    * My, how things change: David Blankenhorn, a man who once testified as an expert witness in support of Proposition 8 at trial, has come forward to condemn anti-marriage equality laws. [Los Angeles Times]

    * Stewart Schwab, the dean of Cornell Law School, will step down in June 2014. Perhaps the next dean will crack down on the number of cam girls pleasuring themselves in the law library. [Cornell Chronicle]

    * Law schools tend to be “bastions of liberalism,” which makes it hard for students to find intellectual diversity. It’s a good thing we’ve got the Federalist Society to balance things out. [Washington Times]

    * People who think Washington needs another law school propose one for students “who can’t afford to … go into debt … to get their legal degree.” This won’t sit well with the legal academy. [News Tribune]

    * With Lindsay Lohan stuck in rehab, Amanda Bynes decided it was her turn to go wild. The retired actress says she’s suing the NYPD for unlawful arrest and sexual harassment. [New York Daily News]

    * Alton Lemon, the Supreme Court plaintiff behind the eponymous Lemon test, RIP. [New York Times]

    8 Comments / / May 28, 2013 at 9:02 AM
  • cbs

    Biglaw, D.C. Circuit, Election Law, Environment / Environmental Law, Eric Holder, John Roberts, Labor / Employment, Law Schools, Non-Sequiturs, SCOTUS, Small Law Firms, Supreme Court, Technology

    Non-Sequiturs: 05.24.13

    Ed. note: Above the Law will not be publishing on Monday, May 27, in observance of the Memorial Day holiday.

    * Manhattan Justice Paul Wooten has ordered CBS to produce all emails between it and the Brooklyn DA’s office concerning “Brooklyn D.A.” and ordered a hearing this afternoon. CBS attorneys are irritated. Now they know how everyone feels when they have to watch Two and a Half Men. [WiseLaw NY]

    * Lois Lerner, the embattled IRS supervisor at the heart of the recent scandal, invoked the Fifth Amendment in her congressional hearing, but in a way that may open the door to contempt. Ironically, maintaining innocence while invoking the Fifth opens one up to “heightened scrutiny.” As noted in Morning Docket, she’s been put on administrative leave. [Simple Justice]

    * T.J. Duane of Lateral Link was named one of the 17 Stanford business students who is going to change the world. Duane is working on technology to “provid[e] solo and boutique attorneys the benefits without the drawbacks of big law.” That’s much better than my proposal to provide solo and boutique attorneys the drawbacks without the benefits of big law, which is just a device that passive-aggressively second-guesses every decision a lawyer makes. [Business Insider]

    * The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has asked the Supreme Court to uphold the D.C. Circuit’s decision holding Obama’s NLRB recess appointments unconstitutional because the appointments caused “major confusion for both employers and employees alike.” They’ve got a point. Not having a quorum on the NLRB because the Senate refuses to confirm anyone and plays parliamentary games does provide certainty… the certainty that the NLRB cannot function and its a free-for-all against workers. [Free Enterprise]

    * Law school applications are down, but not as drastically as expected. [Faculty Lounge]

    * In any event, law schools are facing an economic reckoning dubbed “Peak Law School.” [Lawyers, Guns & Money]

    * A new CBO report analyzes the impact of a carbon tax, in case you’re preparing to start papering cap-and-trade deals. [Breaking Energy]

    * Do potential clients really care about social media? I “Like” this story. [Associate’s Mind]

    * Courtesy of the ABA Journal, you can check out the swag Chief Justice Roberts and Eric Holder got from foreign nations in 2010 after the jump…

    3 Comments / / May 24, 2013 at 5:00 PM
  • Jodi Arias

    Animal Law, Barack Obama, Biglaw, Boalt Hall, Cocaine / Crack, D.C. Circuit, Death Penalty, Drugs, Eric Holder, Federal Judges, Gay, Media and Journalism, Morning Docket, Murder, Tax Law, Trials

    Morning Docket: 05.24.13

    * “Journalists should not be at legal risk for doing their jobs.” Thanks Obama, but AG Eric Holder was the one who kind of signed off on the James Rosen search warrant. [Open Channel / NBC News]

    * The chief judge of the D.C. Circuit apologized for a lack of transparency in the James Rosen probe, and this is one of the least embarrassing things that happened this week. [Washington Post]

    * Despite having “done nothing wrong,” embattled tax official Lois Lerner announced she’s been placed on administrative leave in light of recent events. I salute you, fellow WNE grad. [National Review]

    * Watch out, patent trolls, because this proposed bill might actually be — gasp! — helpful. If enacted, the Patent Abuse Reduction Act’s goal is to help keep discovery costs down. [Hillicon Valley / The Hill]

    * It’s a hell of a drug: for some lawyers, the sequester won’t be such a bad thing after all, because Coast Guard and Navy forces won’t be available to intercept 38 tons of cocaine. [Breaking Defense]

    * Proskauer Rose’s ex-CFO, Elly Rosenthal, has cut down her $10 million suit against the firm to just one allegation. She claims the firm fired her solely for her diagnosis of breast cancer. [Am Law Daily]

    * A third perpetrator emerged in the Berkeley bird beheading case, and he was just sentenced to two days in jail. Can you listen to BARBRI in a jail cell? I guess he’ll find out. [San Francisco Chronicle]

    * The Boy Scouts of America will now admit openly gay youths into their ranks for the first time in the history of ever. You should probably “be prepared” for a flurry of litigation over this. [New York Times]

    * A mistrial was declared in the penalty phase of the Jodi Arias murder trial. Ugh, come on with this, the Lifetime movie is already in post-production! How on earth are they going to work this in? [CNN]

    4 Comments / / May 24, 2013 at 9:03 AM
  • Sri_Srinavasan

    D.C. Circuit, Defamation, Education / Schools, India, Law Schools, Non-Sequiturs, Politics, Sex

    Non-Sequiturs: 05.23.13

    * Congratulations to Sri Srinivasan on his unanimous confirmation to the D.C. Circuit. Fun Fact: Sri Srinivasan played high school basketball on the same team as Danny Manning. No joke there, it’s just a random fun fact I know about him. [USA Today] * Should health care cover sex for people with disabilities? Sure, but […]

    2 Comments / / May 23, 2013 at 5:06 PM
  • Jodi Arias

    Bar Exams, Bernie Madoff, Biglaw, California, D.C. Circuit, Immigration, Money, Morning Docket, Murder, New Jersey, Pictures, Pro Bono, Senate Judiciary Committee, Trials, War on Terror

    Morning Docket: 05.22.13

    * A bipartisan immigration reform bill made its way through the Senate Judiciary Committee and will head to the Senate floor. Of course, the amendments in support of gay marriage didn’t make it in, but that may be moot soon anyway. [CNN]

    * IRS official Lois Lerner may not be very “good at math,” but at least she seems to know the basic principles of constitutional law. She’ll invoke her Fifth Amendment rights before the House Oversight Committee today. [Politico]

    * The D.C. Circuit ruled that the top secret Osama bin Laden death photos will remain top secret, but the internet’s desperate cries of “pics or it didn’t happen” will live on in our hearts. [Thomson Reuters News & Insight]

    * Attention naysayers: it may be time to face the music. According to the latest Altman Weil survey, most law firm leaders think all of these fun recession-driven changes are here to stay. [Am Law Daily]

    * Twenty-two law firms are banding together to fight against fraudulent financial products on a worldwide scale. It’s too bad this legal alliance didn’t exist before the Bernie Madoff scandal. [New York Times]

    * It looks like New Jersey may soon be hopping aboard the pro bono work before bar admission train. You better hope you get your clinic placements in order, people. [New Jersey Law Journal (sub. req.)]

    * The results for the February 2013 bar exam in California are out, and they’re frightening. It’s time to try that acting thing again, because only 41 percent of all test takers passed the exam. [The Recorder]

    * Jodi Arias is now begging jurors to allow her to live out the rest of her days in prison. She wants to contribute to society by painting, recycling, and… not slashing additional throats. Lovely. [Fox News]

    4 Comments / / May 22, 2013 at 9:03 AM
  • 220px-JohnFK

    D.C. Circuit, Department of Justice, Non-Sequiturs, Privacy

    Non-Sequiturs: 05.14.13

    * Even JFK had mommy issues. Unfortunately, his came with possible nuclear armageddon. [Lowering the Bar]

    * Washington, D.C. is a horrible back-biting hellhole. Except for the D.C. Circuit, where Judge Tatel and Chief Judge Sentelle apparently hold weekly kumbaya circles and talk about their feelings. [Concurring Opinions]

    * Prosecutors file motions to keep George Zimmerman’s lawyers from bringing up Trayvon Martin’s past in the trial. Probably because “getting into school fights” is not particularly probative of “deserved to get murdered.” [WKMG]

    * Another look at the DOJ/AP scandal from a unique perspective: a privacy lawyer who used to be a journalist. [Inside Privacy]

    * Jones Day landed the plum job as restructuring counsel for Detroit by one “point.” [AmLaw Daily]

    * When you’re choosing an expert witness, you should really look for that elusive “part-Don Draper, part-Lois Griffin” type. [The Expert Institute]

    * This was an actual problem I encountered when I had to edit the bills of some of my colleagues. [First World Lawyer Problems]

    3 Comments / / May 14, 2013 at 5:20 PM
  • lilo

    Biglaw, Book Club, Books, D.C. Circuit, Guns / Firearms, Intellectual Property, Jed Rakoff, Law Schools, Legal Ethics, Lindsay Lohan, Morning Docket, Partner Issues, Patents, Politics, Senate Judiciary Committee, Wall Street Journal, Weddings

    Morning Docket: 04.11.13

    * “I don’t believe judges should be filibustered.” Tell that to the rest of your Republican pals, Senator Hatch. D.C. Circuit nom Sri Srinivasan faced little drama at the Senate Judiciary Committee yesterday. [Bloomberg]

    * A bipartisan gun regulation deal has been reached in the Senate, and of course the NRA is opposing it — well, except for the parts that expand gun rights. The group really likes those parts. [Washington Post]

    * Trolling for patent partners? Bingham recently snagged five IP partners from DLA Piper’s Los Angeles office, including the former co-chair of DLA patent litigation department. [Thomson Reuters News & Insight]

    * Time well spent: while Detroit hangs on the precipice of bankruptcy, local politicians are worrying about whether retaining Jones Day poses a conflict of interest for their emergency manager (formerly of Jones Day). [Am Law Daily]

    * NYLS — or should we say “New York’s law school” — is revamping its clinical program to kill two birds with one stone (e.g., fulfilling pro bono hours and boosting job prospects). [National Law Journal]

    * For all the talk of his being a hard ass, Judge Rakoff is a nice guy after all! The judge gave an ex-SAC trader permission to go on a honeymoon after his release from prison. [DealBook / New York Times]

    * If you’ve ever wondered how Lat spends his free time, sometimes he’s off writing book reviews for distinguished publications. Check out his review of Mistrial (affiliate link) here. [Wall Street Journal]

    * “Lindsay Lohan is the victim.” What the Heller you talking about? LiLo’s lawyer thinks there’s a conspiracy among the prosecutors on her case that’s resulted in leaks of information to TMZ. [CNN]

    5 Comments / / Apr 11, 2013 at 9:10 AM
  • J.D. = Just the Dark Roast?

    Bankruptcy, Barack Obama, Biglaw, Confirmations, D.C. Circuit, Deaths, Federal Judges, Free Speech, Howrey LLP, Job Searches, Law Schools, Morning Docket, State Attorneys General, United Kingdom / Great Britain

    Morning Docket: 04.08.13

    * President Obama apologized to Kamala Harris after referring to her as the “best-looking attorney general in the country.” We’re guessing the First Lady was none too pleased with her husband’s behavior. [New York Times]

    * If you’re unemployed (or were the victim of a recent layoff), try to keep your head up, because there’s still hope for you. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the legal sector added 2,000 jobs last month. [Am Law Daily]

    * The 10 percent vacancy rate on the nation’s federal courts is unacceptable and the New York Times is ON IT. Perhaps D.C. Circuit hopeful Sri Srinivasan will have some luck at this week’s judicial confirmation hearing. [New York Times]

    * Shine bright like A. Diamond: Howrey’s bankruptcy trustee is still trying to get “unfinished business” settlements from several Biglaw firms, but managed to secure funds from ALAS. [Capital Business / Washington Post]

    * Contrary to what law deans tell you in the op-ed pages, if you want to work as a real lawyer, it actually matters where you go to law school. We’ll probably have more on this later today. [National Law Journal]

    * Cooley Law took a hard hit in the appeal of its defamation case against Rockstar05, and now the disgruntled blogger may seek a dismissal. Score one for anonymous online speech! [Ars Technica]

    * Margaret Thatcher, Great Britain’s first female Prime Minister, RIP. [CNN]

    10 Comments / / Apr 8, 2013 at 9:09 AM
  • lindsay lohan rehab mug shot

    Celebrities, Constitutional Law, Crime, D.C. Circuit, Facebook, Law Professors, Law Reviews, Law School Deans, Law Schools, Lindsay Lohan, Non-Sequiturs, Politics, Religion, Rudeness, Shopping, Weddings

    Non-Sequiturs: 03.22.13

    * So, after being shut down for more than two years, Caitlin Halligan asked President Obama to withdraw her nomination to the D.C. Circuit. This is how democracy works in our country, folks, and it’s pretty sad. [People For the American Way; Post Politics / Washington Post]

    * In America, we’re trying to get official recognition for gay marriage. In Scotland, they’re trying to get official recognition for weddings performed by Jedi Knights. Please, by all means, proceed to stroke each other’s lightsabers over this exciting nerd news. [Volokh Conspiracy]

    * Oh my god, this is something I’m definitely going to have to sit down and read, it looks so salacious and — oh. *eyeroll* This just in from the subtitle letdown department…. [Overlawyered]

    * A political consultant in Nebraska apparently got himself fired because he called Sen. Danielle Conrad a C-U-Next-Tuesday on his Facebook page. That was way harsh, Tai. [Jezebel]

    * Click here to listen to Professor Brian Tamanaha and Dean Lawrence Mitchell talk about rethinking the future of legal education. Tamanaha thinks the tuition is too damn high, whereas Dean Mitchell simply thinks that “life is expensive.” Not even kidding, he really said that. [Associate’s Mind]

    * At Target, you can definitely expect more and pay less, but that’s probably because your money’s allegedly being stolen out of the cash register. [Legal Juice]

    * And just because I love just about everything that Lindsay Lohan does because she’s the hottest of all messes, here’s a timeline of her mug shots ranked in order of her sex appeal. I love that we live in a world where such a thing actually exists! [Gawker]

    6 Comments / / Mar 22, 2013 at 4:29 PM
  • Just $150K plus shipping and handling!

    Biglaw, D.C. Circuit, Deaths, Department of Justice, Election Law, Law Schools, Layoffs, Money, Morning Docket, Politics, SCOTUS, Supreme Court

    Morning Docket: 03.11.13

    * The triple-dog dare: a technique employed to show off how just efficient American democracy is, or something that’s just so ridiculous it might work in the Senate when it comes to judicial filibusters for appeals court nominees. [New York Times]

    * If the Supreme Court were to strike down Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, the Obama administration has a plan in the works from the last time they thought the Supreme Court was going to strike down the very same section. [Huffington Post]

    * It takes more than one legal memo to justify the killing of an American overseas — just ask the guys from the DOJ’s Office of Legal Counsel who rationalized the drone strike against Anwar al-Awlaki. [New York Times]

    * Remember the Winston & Strawn stealth associate layoffs of 2012? Those weren’t layoffs, silly. They just left “because of reduced demand for junior lawyers.” Also, we have a bridge to sell you in Brooklyn. [Am Law Daily]

    * If you’re not satisfied with your law degree after failing the bar exam, don’t worry, we’ve got a money-back guarantee. We’ll give you back 8.9% of your three-year tuition. It’s better than nothing! [National Law Journal]

    * Meanwhile, if law school were only two years long instead of three, then perhaps a money-back guarantee would actually mean something. For now, it’s just one big public relations stunt. [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]

    * Joseph Kelner, plaintiffs’ attorney in the Kent State suit and lawyer for Bernie Goetz, RIP. [New York Times]

    1 Comment / / Mar 11, 2013 at 9:09 AM
  • Romance Novel

    Adoption, Books, Copyright, D.C. Circuit, Environment / Environmental Law, Kids, Lindsay Lohan, Non-Sequiturs, Sandra Day O'Connor

    Non-Sequiturs: 03.01.13

    * Court rules that overlapping elements between romance novels do not amount to infringement. I mean, there’s only so many ways to phrase “throbbing member.” [Courthouse News Service]

    * Pinellas County, Florida (Tampa Bay area) returns to using fluoridated water after a governmental sea change brought on by the issue. Don’t they understand the Communist plot to sap and impurify our precious bodily fluids? [Tampa Bay Times]

    * In fairness, I think pro se litigants generally have a pretty good ineffective assistance claim. [Lowering the Bar]

    * The D.C. Circuit managed to irritate both environmentalists and industry by affirming Fish and Wildlife’s designation of polar bears as “threatened.” It’s a nice middle ground. You know who else would appreciate some middle ground? A polar bear clinging to a shrinking ice floe. [Volokh Conspiracy]

    * Former Justice Sandra Day O’Connor thinks kids need a healthier respect for the American democratic process. It would be unfortunate if the will of a democratic majority could get hijacked by five partisan hacks. [Courthouse News Service]

    * Following up on yesterday’s profile of Lindsay Lohan’s attorney Mark Heller, the judge declared him “incompetent.” Fair enough. [TMZ]

    * Oh, but trust him, he’s a doctor (of law). [The Economist]

    * To quote the inimitable Spencer Hall, “Fine, here, cry.” [New York Times]

    3 Comments / / Mar 1, 2013 at 5:13 PM
  • Charles Fried, D.C. Circuit, Law Professors, Lindsay Lohan, Non-Sequiturs, Politics

    Non-Sequiturs: 02.22.13

    * In the E.D.N.Y., Pitbull prevailed over lovable, legal loser Lindsay Lohan. Lohan’s knack for the epic legal fail carried over to her attorney, Stephanie Ovadia, who was fined $750 for plagiarism by Judge Denis Hurley. [Billboard]

    * Charles Fried is pretty sure Senator Ted Cruz is crazy for saying there was only one Republican on the Harvard Law faculty. But the joke’s on Fried… no one considers a Reagan appointee a Republican anymore, you silly goose! [New Yorker]

    * Here are some outtakes from Michelle Olsen’s coverage of the D.C. Circuit (the main event, if you will, was published here). Sadly, unlike some outtake reels, the D.C. panel did not address the problem of snow blindness in cats. [Appellate Daily]

    * Brian Leiter and Paul Campos had a little dispute. This article sums it up and has some interesting thoughts on just how little law professors care now about their own teaching methods. Don’t read this if you’re averse to honesty. [The Faculty Lounge]

    * Fisticuffs erupt over messing with the thermostat. This is an official warning to the other ATL editors if that office is too hot next week… [LegalJuice]

    * The whole “publish or perish” racket is rough. Bill Araiza needs a hug. [PrawfsBlawg]

    * The ideological center of the U.S. House of Representatives is Staten Island. Woe to the Republic. [New York Daily News]

    9 Comments / / Feb 22, 2013 at 5:14 PM
  • 250px-United_States_Capitol_west_front_edit2

    D.C. Circuit, Department of Justice, Eric Holder, Jury Duty, Politics, Prisons

    Next Week, Congress Will Ruin The Country In The Following Ways

    The sequester is going to be one big disaster muffin. How will it screw up the legal profession? Pretty badly actually.

    28 Comments / / Feb 22, 2013 at 2:58 PM
  • Scotus Possible Nominees

    Conferences / Symposia, Constitutional Law, D.C. Circuit, David Sentelle, Federal Government, Federal Judges, Feeder Judges, Laurence Silberman, Merrick Garland, Money

    New D.C. Circuit Chief Judge Dreading the Sequester

    The D.C. Circuit’s new chief judge and two of his colleagues spoke at a conference over the weekend. What did Their Honors have to say?

    9 Comments / / Feb 18, 2013 at 2:31 PM
  • 53127510-RF

    Crime, D.C. Circuit, Jack Abramoff, Sentencing Law, White-Collar Crime

    Prosecutors Gone Wild: The Case of Kevin Ring

    Prosecutors have waaay too much power to bully non-cooperators.

    12 Comments / / Feb 13, 2013 at 1:39 PM
  • gavel judge Above the Law blog

    Brett Kavanaugh, Clerkships, D.C. Circuit, Federal Government, Federal Judges, Feeder Judges, Job Searches, Law Schools, Merrick Garland

    The Law Clerk Hiring Plan: Really, Really Dead Now

    Can the Law Clerk Hiring Plan survive, now that one super-prestigious court has announced that it’s abandoning ship?

    6 Comments / / Jan 30, 2013 at 12:38 PM

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