Calling out justices

January 28, 2010
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Anyone watching the State of Union Wednesday night catch the somewhat awkward moment between the president and the U.S. Supreme Court? Sitting front and center during the speech, the justices were called out for their ruling Jan. 21 that government can’t ban political spending by corporations in elections.

As President Barack Obama spoke about how the ruling will open up our elections to corporations here and abroad to spend without limits, the justices present for the speech sit there, mostly stoic, as attendees jumped to their feet to applaud the president.

Did you see Justice Samuel Alito scrunching up his face and shaking his head at the president’s comments? You can view a clip of it here. He also appears to mouth something, like “not true.”

I’d be uncomfortable if the president, during his State of the Union speech and in front of millions of people watching on TV, called me out for a decision he didn’t like. I imagine some of the justices were, but in order to make the big decisions on our nation’s laws, they must have thick skin.
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  • Thank you for providing consistent commentary on issues of concern to Indiana\'s legal community. However, is it too much to ask that you spell President Obama\'s name correctly? His name is Barack, not Barrack. It\'s a small difference, but I think the President has earned the right to have his named spelled correctly.

    Thank you.
  • My mistake. Thanks for calling it to my attention and thanks for reading.
  • Certainly his name deserves to be spelled correctly because if he found out he might call you out too!!!!!

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  1. Frankly, it is tragic that you are even considering going to an expensive, unaccredited "law school." It is extremely difficult to get a job with a degree from a real school. If you are going to make the investment of time, money, and tears into law school, it should not be to a place that won't actually enable you to practice law when you graduate.

  2. As a lawyer who grew up in Fort Wayne (but went to a real law school), it is not that hard to find a mentor in the legal community without your school's assistance. One does not need to pay tens of thousands of dollars to go to an unaccredited legal diploma mill to get a mentor. Having a mentor means precisely nothing if you cannot get a job upon graduation, and considering that the legal job market is utterly terrible, these students from Indiana Tech are going to be adrift after graduation.

  3. 700,000 to 800,000 Americans are arrested for marijuana possession each year in the US. Do we need a new justice center if we decriminalize marijuana by having the City Council enact a $100 fine for marijuana possession and have the money go towards road repair?

  4. I am sorry to hear this.

  5. I tried a case in Judge Barker's court many years ago and I recall it vividly as a highlight of my career. I don't get in federal court very often but found myself back there again last Summer. We had both aged a bit but I must say she was just as I had remembered her. Authoritative, organized and yes, human ...with a good sense of humor. I also appreciated that even though we were dealing with difficult criminal cases, she treated my clients with dignity and understanding. My clients certainly respected her. Thanks for this nice article. Congratulations to Judge Barker for reaching another milestone in a remarkable career.

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