Recent Headlines from Above the Law
* Nebraska banned the death penalty. Does this signal a new conservative opposition to the practice? Well, is there a way this can make private prison lobbyists more money? Because then, yes. [FiveThirtyEight]
* The best way to sway a Supreme Court justice? Represent clients that the justices have financial stakes in. [Fix the Court]
* Pharmaceutical companies are peeved that lawyers are using Facebook to identify class action plaintiffs. Why aren’t people content to suffer grievous injury for the sake of profits anymore? [Bloomberg Business]
* Now you can know for sure if your job will be replaced by a robot. Good news, lawyers! Unfortunately, I don’t think this thing’s taking into account document reviewers. [Postgrad Problems]
* Jawbone is accusing Fitbit of poaching workers to steal its technology. Ten points to the tipster for the line: “Think this will all work out?” [Slate]
* Two Biglaw partners from rival firms have joined forces on a new challenge Native American adoption rules. It helps that they’re married to each other. [National Law Journal]
* An interesting perspective: “innovation” is more than technology, and it starts with debt relief. [Rawr]
* A former state senate candidate charged with witness tampering. At least he’s got experience with the system — his dad’s political career ended in a hail of guilty pleas too. [Nashoba Publishing]
* Brace yourselves for a shocker, but Biglaw is failing women. [The American Lawyer]
* David Gans on the upcoming “one person, one vote” claim. The proposition at issue, that representation is based on “voters” not “persons,” is so laughably unconstitutional the Court is clearly just trolling us at this point. I mean, putting aside the horrible racism, isn’t the 3/5ths compromise pretty compelling evidence that the Founders meant to count people who didn’t vote? [Constitutional Accountability Center]
Philip Alito, son of Justice Alito, recently left Gibson Dunn for a new job; where is he now?
Which law firm is paying out big bucks due to a problematic partner?
Which law firms are on a roll when it comes to producing SCOTUS clerks?
* Chicago Law grad went up to Alaska and challenged an Iditarod musher to an arm wrestling match. That’s when she broke her arm. This decision should trigger an automatic two-spot drop in the U.S. News rankings. [Alaska Dispatch News]
* An interview with Keith Wetmore, former Chairman of Morrison and Foerster, diving into his childhood growing up in a funeral home. From working with one group of stiffs to another. [Hsu Untied]
* Ruh roh. Biglaw partner earns a hearty benchslap for deliberately misleading the court. You can’t do that — save it for the summer associates asking about having a family. [Legal Business]
* California lawyer Matt McLaughlin continues his Quixotic drive to have the state execute all the gay people. Now we have a pithy name for his proposed amendment: “The Intolerant Jackass Act.” [Slate]
* David talks to Bloomberg about why Above the Law hurts people’s feelings. It’s more diplomatic than my answer: because they’re soft. [Big Law Business / Bloomberg BNA]
* A lawyer testifies to the state legislature about how great a right-to-work law will be… for his bankruptcy practice. Troll hard, my friend. [YouTube]
* It looks like some pretty big changes are going to be coming down the pipeline at Washington & Lee University School of Law. From faculty and staff layoffs to payouts from its endowment, this generally doesn’t look pretty. We’ll have more on this news later today. [Lawyers, Guns & Money]
* The 87th Academy Awards ceremony is this weekend, and you know what that means: IP lawyers are doing their damndest to protect the Oscars brand. Can you imagine the sheer number of cease and desist letters that have been going out? [National Law Journal]
* Congratulations to Marci Eisenstein, who was recently elected to become the first woman to serve as managing partner of Schiff Hardin in the firm’s 150-year history. FYI, the firm’s most recent partner classes have been 2/3 women for the past three years. [Am Law Daily]
* New Jersey Governor and would-be Republican presidential candidate Chris Christie made five firms really happy in 2014 thanks to all of the legal work he handed to them. Gibson Dunn, for example, earned $7.9 million from the Bridgegate affair. [Courier-Post]
* Which state will be the next to legalize recreational marijuana? It may be Vermont, where Senate Bill 95 would allow those 21 and older to possess, use, and sell pot. Just think, you can save the environment and get high while you do it! [Huffington Post]
How much does law school pedigree correlate with other measures of law firm “success”?