Gavel Grab

Justice at Stake on the Radio

Bert Brandenburg, executive director of the Justice at Stake campaign, gave a 30 minute interview on Wednesday on 99.5 FM, WBAI radio of New York City on the show Talk Back with Hugh Hamilton. Bert discussed a range of federal topics from the FISA legislation, the Boumediene decision and others. Here is a link to the interview.

This interview coincides with Justice at Stake’s recently released review of the Federal Courts and Government handling civil liberties, the fight against terrorism, and the role of fair and impartial courts in the last year. For more information on the Federal Courts, check out our publication Courting Danger.

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Court Rules for Detainee

On the heels of the Supreme Court’s ruling in the Boumediene habeas case, the D.C.  Circuit Court has ruled that a Chinese Muslim was wrongly designated an enemy combatant by the U.S. government. According to scotusblog.com, Hazaifa Parhat was detained after being accused of participating in a terrorist training camp in Afghanistan around September 11, 2001. The D.C. Circuit’s ruling is classified, but they issued a one page release. The Parhat decision also relied on the Boumediene decision, which gives Parhat the chance to file for immediate release from Guantanamo. The full scotusblog.com report is at: http://www.scotusblog.com/wp/victory-for-detainee-in-first-case/.

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Links for 2008-06-18

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Links for 2008-06-13

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Reactions to Boumediene

Today’s blog will be dedicated entirely to the Boumediene decision that the Supreme Court had handed down. The decision was a 5-4 decision, favoring the rights of the detainees to be informed of why they are being detained, thus returning Habeas Corpus to the detained.

So far, the folks at Balkin have a few questions that have been left unanswered by the decision decision.

While our friends at the SCOTUS blog have given their very early view on the decision.

One thing is for sure though, Justice Scalia was not at all happy with the decision. And that puts it mildly. I guess Scalia is finally embracing his prestige as a Supreme Court justice.

Lastly, here is Justice at Stake’s Executive Director, Bert Brandenburg’s comment on the decision:

Liberty always deserves a day in court, even in wartime. Today’s Supreme Court decision affirms our system of checks and balances, in which courts ensure that the Constitution’s basic guarantees are upheld.

The history of court decisions in wartime shows time and again that the courts, carrying out their job defending the Constitution, have not undercut national security.

Since September 11, our courts too frequently have been deprived of the authority and independence they need to protect our constitutional liberties and hold the government accountable. As Justice Sandra Day O’Connor said so eloquently, “A state of war is not a blank check for the president.”

In today’s ruling, Justice Anthony M. Kennedy added, “The Framers’ inherent distrust of governmental power was the driving force behind the constitutional plan that allocated powers among three independent branches. This design serves not only to make Government accountable but also to secure individual liberty.”

Expect more thought out responses in the next 24 hours as the world gets deeper into this momentous decision, and its impact on Federal Courts.

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6/3/08: Impact of the Boumediene Case, Proposal for Fed Court Pay Raise, Gavel Grab is in the Top 100!!

What Might the Court Do in Boumediene? And How Might Congress Respond? – Balkinization
Prof. Marty Lederman takes a look at the Boumediene case in front of the Supreme Court and the potential fall out.

A “Modest Proposal” to Increase Judicial Pay: – The Volokh Conspiracy
Illya Somin’s proposal for Fed. Court judges pay raises.

Nationwide Layoff Watch: The Florida Court System – Above the Law Blog
Many judges and other court employees in Florida have lost their jobs after budget cutbacks.

The Top 100 Criminal Justice Blogs List – Criminal Justice Degrees Guide
Congratulations to Gavel Grab. We made a list!!

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6/3/08: National Center for State Courts Gets a Plug, DOJ Tries to Quell Unrest Over War Court Judge

Here’s a novel way to learn about the court system – The Daily Press
A plug for one of our partners, National Center for State Courts.

Marine colonel defends dismissal of war court judge – The Miami Herald
The US defends its decision to fire a terrorism trial judge.

Harry Reid’s Handshake – The Wall Street Journal
Editorial stating that Sen. Majority leader Harry Reid’s back track on a deal to confirm judges.

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5/30/08: Ziegler Reprimanded, Kitchens Runs a Different Campaign in Mississippi

Ex-prosecutors embrace courts for terror cases – The Associated Press
An argument for the courts to try suspected terrorists.

Wis. Supreme Court reprimands one of its own – The Chicago Tribune
The Wisconsin Supreme Court reprimanded Justice Annette Ziegler for judicial ethics violations. The first time in Wisconsin Supreme Court’s history that they have reprimanded a sitting justice.

Justices Show Ability To Move to the Center – The Washington Post
The Roberts’ Court are centrists?

Kitchens running on judiciary campaign reform – ACS Blog
Mississippi Supreme Court candidate, Jim Kitchens, is running a different type of judicial campaign.

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5/23/08: Breakthrough in the Domestic Surveillance Debate, Guantánamo Trials Will not be Delayed, Nevada Lawyers Question Judges

At Supreme Court, 5-to-4 Rulings Fade, but Why? – The New York Times
Linda Greenhouse takes a look at why the Court is not as polarized as it was in the past.

Guantánamo Judge Won’t Delay Trials – The New York Times
Military judge will not delay Guantánamo trials.”

Lawmakers Near Agreement On Domestic Surveillance – Wall Street Journal
The issue of immunity for telecoms will be resolved with this possible agreement.

Attorneys most critical of judges’ knowledge of law – Las Vegas Review Journal
Attorneys in a Nevada county are very critical of some of their judges knowledge of the law.

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5/23/08: Breakthrough in the Domestic Surveillance Debate, Guantánamo Trials Will not be Delayed, Nevada Lawyers Question Judges

At Supreme Court, 5-to-4 Rulings Fade, but Why? – The New York Times
Linda Greenhouse takes a look at why the Court is not as polarized as it was in the past.

Guantánamo Judge Won’t Delay Trials – The New York Times
Military judge will not delay Guantánamo trials.”

Lawmakers Near Agreement On Domestic Surveillance – Wall Street Journal
The issue of immunity for telecoms will be resolved with this possible agreement.

Attorneys most critical of judges’ knowledge of law – Las Vegas Review Journal
Attorneys in a Nevada county are very critical of some of their judges knowledge of the law.

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