Sneaky vote at Statehouse

February 17, 2009
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We think the election of Indiana’s Supreme Court justices is a pretty big deal, so we’ve been closely watching House Joint Resolution 9, which proposes that we do away with the merit selection and retention system.

So imagine our surprise today to learn that the resolution, which was reassigned to another committee on Feb. 12, was going to be debated today before the House started work at 1 p.m.

We’ve been watching this resolution daily, noting where it is in the legislature. Just this morning, around 9 a.m., reporter Mike Hoskins checked the Committee on Government and Regulatory Reform’s agenda to see if the resolution was on it.

Nothing was listed.

Because of a series of events late this morning, we learned that the committee was indeed going to vote on it. Mike rushed over to the Statehouse in time to witness the 5-5 vote, with two members not present. With the tie vote, it failed to move on to the full House at this time.

Why the urgency and lack of announcement on the vote with this resolution? Was the committee trying to get a vote because those two members weren’t present, or they didn’t want people to know about it and speak out against it?

Then again, we shouldn’t be surprised because politics can be pretty sneaky.
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  1. This sure is not what most who value good governance consider the Rule of Law to entail: "In a letter dated March 2, which Brizzi forwarded to IBJ, the commission dismissed the grievance “on grounds that there is not reasonable cause to believe that you are guilty of misconduct.”" Yet two month later reasonable cause does exist? (Or is the commission forging ahead, the need for reasonable belief be damned? -- A seeming violation of the Rules of Profession Ethics on the part of the commission) Could the rule of law theory cause one to believe that an explanation is in order? Could it be that Hoosier attorneys live under Imperial Law (which is also a t-word that rhymes with infamy) in which the Platonic guardians can do no wrong and never owe the plebeian class any explanation for their powerful actions. (Might makes it right?) Could this be a case of politics directing the commission, as celebrated IU Mauer Professor (the late) Patrick Baude warned was happening 20 years ago in his controversial (whisteblowing) ethics lecture on a quite similar topic: http://www.repository.law.indiana.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1498&context=ilj

  2. I have a case presently pending cert review before the SCOTUS that reveals just how Indiana regulates the bar. I have been denied licensure for life for holding the wrong views and questioning the grand inquisitors as to their duties as to state and federal constitutional due process. True story: https://www.scribd.com/doc/299040839/2016Petitionforcert-to-SCOTUS Shorter, Amici brief serving to frame issue as misuse of govt licensure: https://www.scribd.com/doc/312841269/Thomas-More-Society-Amicus-Brown-v-Ind-Bd-of-Law-Examiners

  3. Here's an idea...how about we MORE heavily regulate the law schools to reduce the surplus of graduates, driving starting salaries up for those new grads, so that we can all pay our insane amount of student loans off in a reasonable amount of time and then be able to afford to do pro bono & low-fee work? I've got friends in other industries, radiology for example, and their schools accept a very limited number of students so there will never be a glut of new grads and everyone's pay stays high. For example, my radiologist friend's school accepted just six new students per year.

  4. I totally agree with John Smith.

  5. An idea that would harm the public good which is protected by licensing. Might as well abolish doctor and health care professions licensing too. Ridiculous. Unrealistic. Would open the floodgates of mischief and abuse. Even veteranarians are licensed. How has deregulation served the public good in banking, for example? Enough ideology already!

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