December 3, 2008

Marquette alum reappears for more comic relief

For some strange reason our old friend Daniel Suhr is posting at the Marquette Law School faculty blog. Today's entry finds him pontificating further to a couple of issues roughly related to the Mike Gableman case currently before the Wisconsin Judicial Commission.

Mr. Suhr, it may be fondly recalled, was a fervent and devoted disciple of Mike Gableman practically to the point of hysterics, recklessly mangling the case law and pronouncing former State Supreme Court Justice Louis Butler a menace to the Homeland.

Now it seems one of Gableman's several attorneys, James Bopp, obtained a victory of sorts after challenging in federal court a provision of the Kansas Code of Judicial Conduct which forbade a candidate for judge directly soliciting campaign contributions.

The Wisconsin corollary is Supreme Court Rule 60.06(4). As was mentioned here a few days ago, a Milwaukee County circuit court judge, the Hon. John Siefert, is in the process of challenging that same provision pursuant to a complaint filed last February.

Prophesies Suhr, "Under the federal district court’s decision in Kansas, it seems clear that 60.06(4) is unconstitutional." Not only that but the recent Kansas disposition, Suhr ventures, "may result in new litigation in Wisconsin."

Clearly intrigued by this point, Mr. Suhr at last wonders: "Will a Wisconsin judge or candidate soon challenge [60.06(4)] as such?"

Well, yes, a Wisconsin judge will indeed challenge SCR 60.06(4) "as such," at least just as soon as last February rolls around. In fact Daniel Suhr himself provides a link to a reply memorandum filed in Siefert v. Alexander, which he apparently neglected to read.

The oversight is understandable, I suppose, when one is beside oneself with evident glee at the prospect of an heroic Mike Gableman invalidating a rule of judicial ethics designed to discourage and perhaps prevent lying about a perceived political rival, the very rule that none other than Mike Gableman stands accused of violating.

As for the actual law school faculty bloggers, I heartily recommend Prof. Michael O'Hear's* highly informative weekly coverage of the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit.

* Distinguished owner of the world's largest coffee cup.


capper said...

The oversight is understandable, I suppose, when one is beside oneself with apparent glee at the prospect of Mike Gableman invalidating a rule of judicial ethics designed to discourage and perhaps prevent lying about a political rival.

The glee stems from the joy of finding his apparent door into a life of politics. How else would such a misinformed goof like Suhr have a chance, lest he be allowed to falsely malign his opponent?

Other Side said...

Isn't the ability to falsely malign an opponent a job requirement in the Republican "running-for-office" playbook?

Anonymous said...

As I wrote to Daniel Suhr, once, on his student blog:

The sort of shabby pseudo-analysis-for-hire that you’ve been spinning out re:Butler and Gableman might help land you a sinecure in rightwingland, Daniel. But I urge you to consider the long term effects on your reputation of receiving such a basic education on credibility, honest writing, evidential reasoning, and research practices through trial and error, in public. Everyone of strong opinions learns some harsh lessons in their (relative) youth, about the dangers of letting the mouth run on ahead of the brain, and perhaps ahead of the decency too. But not everyone is encouraged and rewarded to do so in a practically eternal and universally accessible venue.

Exciting to be getting in on being a player, I’m sure. But please do think carefully about the worth the Attaboys you may be getting from people who already have such things as tenure, or fortunes, or who have perhaps already written off the thought of being respected for the cogency rather than for their ideological reliability. [/paternalism]

The seeds sometimes fall on rocky ground, alas.

Anonymous said...

For some strange reason our old friend Daniel Suhr is posting at the Marquette Law School Faculty Blog

Well, it's not that strange of a reason. Professor O'Hear, Dean of Research at the Law School, wanted to make the blog more than just a place for faculty to spread their thoughts, so he's experimenting with Student Bloggers of the Month (I, a 3L, was the first one) and with Alumni Bloggers of the Month (of which Dan is the first). It's not a bad idea, really; these days blogs are slowly finding a niche as alternative legal publication.

Mind you, I'm pretty much diametrically opposed to Dan's views. My first post on the blog was one condemning the whole idea of elections for judges in the first place, and I can assure you that there's NO love lost with me for Gableman. Frankly, I'd prefer judges were banned from ever affiliating with any political party. That being said, I've so far lost that battle, and as long as we allow judicial elections in Wisconsin, I'm not sure it's reasonable to have a law on the books that prohibits judges from making campaign pledges or soliciting campaign dollars. If we're going to have elections, you need to have them be like all other elections. That doesn't get Gableman off the hook for lying about Butler's record, but the fact that he made an attack ad in and of itself shouldn't be condemned on legal grounds.

(Believe me, to agree with Siefert on this is painful to me. To agree with him on ANYTHING is painful to me! I'm not sure there's a lot of love lost on him either.)

illusory tenant said...

Hi Andrew, and thanks. I did read your blog posts and enjoyed them very much. "I'm Louis Butler and I'm not under investigation for anything" — great line.

Prof. O'Hear's is a fine initiative and I'm pleased to hear he's become an Associate Dean. He's a brilliant fellow and an amazingly organized and effective teacher.

Anonymous said...

Although it doesn't fit neatly into your world of Republicans-bad, Democrats-good, you might find it interesting to know that Siefert is a Democrat, along with being a former police officer and municipal judge.

illusory tenant said...

I know that. And Johnny Ramone once gave me a guitar pick, so they can't all be bad.