Complaint reignites debate

December 19, 2008
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At the end of October, I wrote about Indianapolis defense attorney Bob Hammerle filing a complaint with the Disciplinary Commission regarding television ads run by Attorney General Republican candidate Greg Zoeller. Hammerle has since heard back and I thought you’d like to know what the outcome of his complaint was, seeing that Zoeller will be our new attorney general.

Hammerle recently sent us the response from the Disciplinary Commission, which did not find an appropriate basis for formal action. Donald Lundberg noted that it would be difficult to punish Zoeller’s campaign speech in the ads aimed at Democratic opponent Linda Pence because it deals with public affairs and political discourse, which is at the heart of the First Amendment.

Lundberg did say in the letter that Hammerle’s complaint about the ads touched on a debate that’s happened in the legal community for years – should attorneys be judged by the clients they keep?

In theory, the answer is no, but in practice, some people’s opinions of certain attorneys may be defined by the clients they represent. Lundberg sees this debate as more of a philosophical one than one as foundation for disciplinary actions. Because this has been such an ongoing topic in legal ethics, we think the idea deserves a closer look. Indiana Lawyer reporter Michael Hoskins is going to explore this issue in a future issue of the paper. I’ll let you know when it will be published.
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  • good article, issue of concern
    The state bars have gone way to far towards punishing lawyers for polically incorrect speech. In Re Campiti mocks the First Amendment. This rule needs to be shoved back hard. Luncbergs recent article in Res Gestae was instructive but this trend is BAAAD for lawyers and free speech.

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  1. The sad thing is that no fish were thrown overboard The "greenhorn" who had never fished before those 5 days was interrogated for over 4 hours by 5 officers until his statement was illicited, "I don't want to go to prison....." The truth is that these fish were measured frozen off shore and thawed on shore. The FWC (state) officer did not know fish shrink, so the only reason that these fish could be bigger was a swap. There is no difference between a 19 1/2 fish or 19 3/4 fish, short fish is short fish, the ticket was written. In addition the FWC officer testified at trial, he does not measure fish in accordance with federal law. There was a document prepared by the FWC expert that said yes, fish shrink and if these had been measured correctly they averaged over 20 inches (offshore frozen). This was a smoke and mirror prosecution.

  2. I love this, Dave! Many congrats to you! We've come a long way from studying for the bar together! :)

  3. This outbreak illustrates the absurdity of the extreme positions taken by today's liberalism, specifically individualism and the modern cult of endless personal "freedom." Ebola reminds us that at some point the person's own "freedom" to do this and that comes into contact with the needs of the common good and "freedom" must be curtailed. This is not rocket science, except, today there is nonstop propaganda elevating individual preferences over the common good, so some pundits have a hard time fathoming the obvious necessity of quarantine in some situations....or even NATIONAL BORDERS...propagandists have also amazingly used this as another chance to accuse Western nations of "racism" which is preposterous and offensive. So one the one hand the idolatry of individualism has to stop and on the other hand facts people don't like that intersect with race-- remain facts nonetheless. People who respond to facts over propaganda do better in the long run. We call it Truth. Sometimes it seems hard to find.

  4. It would be hard not to feel the Kramers' anguish. But Catholic Charities, by definition, performed due diligence and held to the statutory standard of care. No good can come from punishing them for doing their duty. Should Indiana wish to change its laws regarding adoption agreements and or putative fathers, the place for that is the legislature and can only apply to future cases. We do not apply new laws to past actions, as the Kramers seem intent on doing, to no helpful end.

  5. I am saddened to hear about the loss of Zeff Weiss. He was an outstanding member of the Indianapolis legal community. My thoughts are with his family.

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