Category Archives: Law: Everything Else

Catnip for (Judicial) Voting Theory Jurisprudes

David Post, Wild voting paradox case in the 3rd Circuit. Just. Go. Read. It.

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Great Immigration Video

Never heard of the authors, but “Heard it Before” gets it right:

Spotted via Daily Kos.

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Tweaked Today

Froomkin’s Legal Writing Tips.

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Take That!

A Judge got mad. Something good (and, sadly, unusual) resulted:

The Court would have granted Petitioners a stay of removal, but was informed that Petitioners were removed earlier today. The government is hereby ordered to use its best efforts to intercept Petitioners when they land tonight in Guatemala City and to return Petitioners to the United States immediately. If the government is unable to intercept Petitioners at the airport, they must locate Petitioners in Guatemala and return them to the United States as quickly as possible. Upon their return, Petitioners are granted a stay of removal pending disposition of their petition for review. If, upon contact, Petitioners inform the government that they do not want to return to the United States, the government shall secure a written memorialization to that effect — even if that writing is in Spanish.

Too often, spiriting the petitioner out of the country is held to moot the case. I like this outcome better. Full text of Chief Judge Theodore McKee’s order for the Third Circuit.)

(spotted via SDFLA Blog)

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‘Thinking Like A Lawyer’ Proved to Exist

‘Ideology’ or ‘Situation Sense’? An Experimental Investigation of Motivated Reasoning and Professional Judgment:

This paper reports the results of a study on whether political predispositions influence judicial decisionmaking. The study was designed to overcome the two principal limitations on existing empirical studies that purport to find such an influence: the use of nonexperimental methods to assess the decisions of actual judges; and the failure to use actual judges in ideologically-biased-reasoning experiments. The study involved a sample of sitting judges (n = 253), who, like members of a general public sample (n = 800), were culturally polarized on climate change, marijuana legalization and other contested issues. When the study subjects were assigned to analyze statutory interpretation problems, however, only the responses of the general-public subjects and not those of the judges varied in patterns that reflected the subjects’ cultural values. The responses of a sample of lawyers (n = 217) were also uninfluenced by their cultural values; the responses of a sample of law students (n = 284), in contrast, displayed a level of cultural bias only modestly less pronounced than that observed in the general-public sample. Among the competing hypotheses tested in the study, the results most supported the position that professional judgment imparted by legal training and experience confers resistance to identity-protective cognition — a dynamic associated with politically biased information processing generally — but only for decisions that involve legal reasoning. The scholarly and practical implications of the findings are discussed.

Spotted via Solum, Kahan, Hoffman, Evans, Devins, Lucci and Cheng on Experminental Assessment of the Effects of Motivated Reasoning on Actual Judges.

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Why Obama’s Immigration Plan is Legal

Here, via Marty Lederman, is the opinion of the Office of Legal Counsel underlying President Obama’s new ‘deferred action policy’ on certain classes of undocumented immigrants.

Spoiler alert: the President is exercising powers delegated to him by Congress plus a dose of prosecutorial discretion. This really isn’t as if a future President were to say, “we will not enforce the estate tax.”

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General Mills Surrenders

Reprinted with permission.

Reprinted with permission.

In the face of a huge public backlash, General Mills has removed the abusive contract terms it tried out earlier this week. (See Cereal Wrap?)

Only question now is: how long before a modified limited stealth version turns up somewhere on their site or in or on their packaging.

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