Robert Bork

* John Kerry has been nominated to be the next Secretary of State. I expect a tough confirmation battle where Republicans openly question his courage and integrity under fire… oh, wait, I’m being told that Republicans were actually just lying to all of us in 2004 by slandering a war hero for political gain. [Yahoo! News]

* The best thing about the NRA’s bizarre press conference was that I got to go on the Huffington Post and use the Konami code in a point. [HuffPost Live]

* Of course, if people could get high, there would be less gun violence. [The Volokh Conspiracy]

* And by the way, nobody plays Bulletstorm, Mortal Kombat and Slaughterhouse are decades old, and nobody has even heard of Kindergarten Killer, but it apparently involves a janitor who takes out a school. Grand Theft Auto is some good stuff though. It’s so good, I’m going to go out and jack some cars, drive into a police cruiser, and then hide out until I lose my wanted level. [Kotaku]

* Richard Epstein on Robert Bork. [Ricochet via How Appealing]

* You know what’s sad? The Mayan calendar was a scientific masterstroke that was turned into a punchline largely by people who are resistant to science. If you’re looking for real end of the world scenarios, the truth is out there. [Science Blogs]

* Seven out of nine sitting Supreme Court justices were silent when it came to the passing of Robert Bork. Justice Antonin Scalia, of course, issued a public statement, as did liberal Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg (surprise!). [WSJ Law Blog (sub. req.)]

* No one ever really doubted that it would take an army of Biglaw lawyers from the likes of Sullivan & Cromwell, Shearman & Sterling, and Wachtel Lipton to handle a monumental deal like the proposed $8.2 billion NYSE/ICE merger. [Am Law Daily]

* Can you coach with Nick Saban and be a Miller Canfield partner at the same time? No. But you can sue (and win!) when the firm allegedly forces you out due to its “culture of fear and intimidation.” [Detroit Free Press]

* Justice Rolando Acosta, who wrote the opinion upholding the dismissal of the class action case against NYLS, rates well among his peers as a nominee for the New York Court of Appeals. [New York Law Journal]

* Peter Madoff was sentenced to ten years in prison for his role in Bernie Madoff’s Ponzi scheme, but the judge will probably let him go to his granddaughter’s bat mitzvah before shipping him to the pokey. [Bloomberg]

* Merry Christmas, now go f**k yourself. A federal judge has given a woman in Louisiana free rein to display holiday lights on her roof in the form of an extended middle finger. God bless America. [CBS 3 Springfield]

We learned this morning that Robert H. Bork died. But the era that he ushered in lives on.

It’s sad to remember a man for his most notable failure instead of his accomplishments. Somewhere, Bill Buckner just nodded in agreement. Bork was a U.S. Solicitor General, an accomplished scholar, and of course, a rejected nominee for the Supreme Court.

Bork was an originalist, a crazy, rabid conservative who hated the Warren Court and saw no constitutional problem with forcing me to drink from a separate water fountain — so long as my water fountain was just as good as the white one. For the kids out there, let me tell you that while crazy originalists have come to dominate conservative legal thought, back in 1987, Bork’s views were pretty controversial.

As Solicitor General under Richard Nixon, Bork participated in the “Saturday Night Massacre” (which didn’t sound like such hyperbole back in a time before mass shootings were a regular thing).

During the confirmation process, Bork was candid about his views and opinions. Democrats erected a wall of opposition against him. His nomination was defeated 58 – 42.

Defeating the Bork nomination was probably the worst thing that has happened to the Supreme Court in living memory….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Robert Bork: The Man Who Borked the SCOTUS Nomination Process”

* Oh mon dieu! Cela ne semble pas bon! As confirmed by The Lawyer, Nixon Peabody will definitely be closing its four-year-old international outpost in Paris, France, leaving the firm with only two offices outside of the United States. Triste. :( [Am Law Daily]

* “I just wanted somebody to pat me on the head.” Aww, all this former Winston & Strawn partner wanted was for someone to tell him he was a good boy, so he helped Kenneth Starr launder money. At least he didn’t get jail time. [New York Law Journal]

* Sorry, lady, but when you work in an HR capacity and you publish tripe about gays not being civil rights victims because they “choose” their lifestyle, the Sixth Circuit will just laugh at your appeal. [National Law Journal]

* At least one law school has gotten the point that tuition is too damn high. Starting next year, Seton Hall Law will allow qualifying first-year students to save about 50 percent on the cost of attendance. [Associated Press]

* What are some benefits of taking a gap year between the completion of your undergraduate degree and law school? Well, for one, you might reconsider your decision to enroll. [Law Admissions Lowdown / U.S. News]

* Robert Bork, former D.C. Circuit judge and SCOTUS nominee, RIP. [Commentary Magazine]

‘Really, Gabon? C’mon you guys.’

* Google asked Gregory Sidak and Judge Robert Bork to write a report on its antitrust investigations. [Criterion Economics]

* Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom just caught a tough break, courtesy of the government of… Gabon? [Threat Level / Wired]

* Marco Delgado, lawyer and former trustee of Carnegie Mellon University, is accused of laundering half a billion dollars for a Mexican drug cartel. [Post-Gazette]

* I’m very, very uninterested in getting tangled in racial debates after the election. But this stuff is messed up and scary. [Gawker]

* And this too. Ick. [Jezebel]

* Next time you plan a robbery, maybe plan on taking a nap before you reach the front door of your score. [Legal Juice]

Arlen Specter was always a fighter. From his days stamping out corruption as a prosecutor in Philadelphia to his three decades of service in the Senate, Arlen was fiercely independent — never putting party or ideology ahead of the people he was chosen to serve.

– President Obama, remembering former Senator Arlen Specter, who died yesterday at age 82. Specter played a central role many controversial Congressional legal battles, including his aggressive questioning of Anita Hill and helping defeat Robert Bork’s SCOTUS bid.

Robert Bork

Some lawyers can be so circumspect in speech and so careful in action that they’re just plain boring. Such caution might help you make it to the Supreme Court someday, but it’s not a recipe for a very fun life.

Thankfully, not all brilliant lawyers are afraid of speaking their minds. Take Robert Bork, the former U.S. Solicitor General and D.C. Circuit judge whose Supreme Court nomination famously went down in flames in 1987 — due in part to his loquaciousness during his confirmation hearings.

Judge Bork, now 84, is currently a fellow at the Hudson Institute think tank. He’s not as involved in public life as he once was, but he’s not completely out of the picture. For example, he’s serving as a legal adviser to Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney (a development that some on the left have criticized).

And Judge Bork continues to make controversial pronouncements, most recently in an interview with Newsweek….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Borking Up a Storm: Romney’s High-Profile Legal Adviser Speaks His Mind”

Last week, inspired by the pending Supreme Court nomination of Elena Kagan, we embarked upon a fun little imaginative exercise:

What if Supreme Court nominees didn’t have to defend themselves to the American public? What if the U.S. Senate’s constitutional privilege of “advice and consent” was revoked? What would the Court look like if the nominees didn’t have to even pretend to be moderate?

It’s a thought experiment that we’re sure has been done countless times before. But we’ve never done it, so we’ll plunge ahead.

Here are the rules: (1) The nominee should be unconfirmable. (2) The nominees on the right should make Elie angry; the nominees on the left should make Lat uncomfortable. (3) Mealy-mouthed moderates need not apply.

President Elie Mystal kicked things off by nominating his four liberal justices. And they did make me uncomfortable — half of them failed the bar exam.

I was in charge of picking the five conservative justices. So, who are my nominees?

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “The Unconfirmable Supreme Court (Part 2): The Conservatives”

Robert H Bork Judge Robert Bork Bob Bork Abovethelaw Above the Law blog.jpgWho says that conservative judicial icon Robert Bork, of the famously ill-fated Supreme Court nomination, is anti-plaintiff?

Judge Bork is all in favor of punitive damages — when, for example, he’s demanding them in his Complaint (PDF). The distinguished law professor and former judge has filed a slip-and-fall lawsuit against the Yale Club of New York City.

Bork’s fellow traveler in conservative circles, Ted Frank — who’s currently a fellow at AEI, where Bork used to be a fellow — “sympathize[s] with Judge Bork’s serious injuries.” But even Frank deems Bork’s claim for punitives a bit dubious.

P.S. Bork groupies, mark your calendars: On June 26, the Federalist Society is holding Borkapalooza in Washington, DC. More details here.

Note to Fed Soc folks: Do not place Judge Bork’s dais at an “unreasonable” height, and be sure to have handrails on the stairs leading up to it. You’re welcome.

Bork Sues the Yale Club [Overlawyered]
Robert Bork Files Slip-and-Fall Lawsuit Against Yale Club [WSJ Law Blog]
Bork v. Yale Club of New York City [Wall Street Journal (PDF)]
A Conference Discussing the Contributions of Judge Robert H. Bork [Federalist Society]

“Okay, Judge Bork. Smile and say ‘The Original Understanding’!!!”

(Also: Is that Harvard Law prof Laurence Tribe standing behind Robert Bork, or just someone who looks a lot like him?)

Earlier this week, we gave you a detailed report about the fabulous nuptials of Ted Olson — the winning lawyer in Bush v. Gore, former Solicitor General, and current Gibson Dunn partner — and his beautiful and brilliant bride, Lady Booth.* The Olson wedding was attended by the crème de la crème of D.C. and conservative legal circles.

Now we have an update to our prior coverage, an ATL exclusive: WEDDING PICTURES!!! And they’re not boring, like the ones your college roommate makes you look at every time you visit her house. Did Justice Sandra Day O’Connor attend your college roommate’s wedding?

Check out the pics — there are just a few of them, it won’t take you long — after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Lady and Ted’s Excellent Adventure: Wedding Photos That Rock”