John Ashcroft

The [Ninth Circuit] seems to have cherry-picked the aspects of our opinions that gave colorable support to the proposition that the un-constitutionality of the action here was clearly established.

Qualified immunity gives government officials breathing room to make reasonable but mistaken judgments about open legal questions. When properly applied, it protects ‘all but the plainly incompetent or those who knowingly violate the law.’ [Former Attorney General John] Ashcroft deserves neither label, not least because eight Court of Appeals judges agreed with his judgment in a case of first impression.

– Justice Antonin Scalia, writing for the Court in Ashcroft v. al-Kidd (via Josh Blackman). (The eight Court of Appeals judges are those who joined Judge O’Scannlain’s dissent from the denial of rehearing en banc.)

hillary-the-movie.jpg* Free speech goes head to head with campaign finance laws at the Supreme Court today. [Washington Independent]
* The 9th Circuit ruled that John Ashcroft can be sued by a Muslim man who suffered under the former AG’s anti-terrorism strategies. [Washington Post]
* An Ohio judge makes his scarlet letter neon yellow. [New York Daily News]
* Judges are the ones regulating Wall Street. [Bloomberg]
* An ex-partner in Florida has sued the chairman of his former firm for wrongfully firing him after a confrontation over firm funds being used to support Hillary Clinton, among other misdeeds. [Courthouse News Service]
* In Texas classrooms, Obama is shunned, but Bibles may be a requirement. [Houston Chronicle]
* More retired judges do it for free. Now in North Carolina. [Raleigh News & Observer]

Lady Justice breast bust bosom Monica Goodling Above the Law blog.jpgEven those of you who are sick and tired of our Monica Goodling coverage will enjoy this little tidbit. It has been mentioned by a few commenters, and we’ve also received a bunch of emails about it.
From the National Journal (via TPMmuckraker):

Psst! Sources tell us that none other than Monica Goodling, former aide to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, was responsible for draping over the ample bosoms of the Art Deco statues in the Justice Department’s Great Hall during the reign of the prim John Ashcroft.

The coverings were removed, accompanied by a sigh from an appreciative public, in 2005…

Goodling and Lady Justice: The Original Cover-Up [TPMmuckraker]

Jesus freak Above the Law.jpgBreaking news: The Second Coming is almost here!
Don’t believe us? Check out the official press release:

[T]he disasters and plagues that are described in the Bible are about to happen. The immediate future will be difficult for everyone, but the result will be that people acknowledge the true Christian God and follow his commandments. The cities will be like Heaven on Earth and God Himself will come and live with us.

The first plague to happen in the immediate future will be a tsunami affecting the East Coast of America. Unfortunately, even Christians who are expecting these events seem unwilling to accept that they are about to happen. If this belief persists, the death toll for the East Coast will be extremely high.

A tsunami? We respectfully dissent.
When the first plague arrives, it will hit a law school library. Maybe locusts in the Am Jur volumes, or LLM students breaking out in boils.
Why? Strange things have been happening at law school libraries lately. Like the “mystery smell” at the NYU library. And now the “Jesus” freak at Emory Law School:

From: “Katherine Brokaw” [email address redacted]
Date: December 15, 2006 2:37:38 PM EST
To: [Emory Law School classes of 2007 - 2009]
Subject: [ELS 2008-announce] stranger in library last night
Last night a white male, approximately 40, was disruptive in the library. He was wearing a Jesus t-shirt, a black leather jacket, black cowboy hat with the word “perfect” in silver. We are told he claimed to be the attorney general of the United States.
If you see him in the library or in Gambrell, please notify Operations or Security, or the staff at the Circulaton Desk in the library who will call the appropriate people. Thank you — Dean Brokaw

So that’s what John Ashcroft has been up to lately.
(Besides appearing on The Daily Show — on which, by the way, he was surprisingly charming and funny.)
The Second Coming [press release, via Yahoo! Finance]
The Daily Show: John Ashcroft []
Earlier: Breaking: Mystery Smell Hits NYU Law Library!!!