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Judge rejects interlocutory appeal in Marion Superior judiciary challenge

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A federal judge has denied the state of Indiana’s motion for an interlocutory appeal, signaling that a trial probably won’t be needed in a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of how Marion Superior judges are elected.

Chief Judge Richard Young of the District Court for the Southern District of Indiana on Thursday denied the state’s motion for interlocutory appeal of the court’s September denial of a motion to dismiss.

Young’s September order allowed a lawsuit filed last year  by Common Cause and the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana to go forward. The suit seeks an injunction against enforcement of Indiana Code 33-33-49-13, the process for electing judges in the Marion Superior Courts. The suit claims the system is “unique in Indiana, and perhaps in the nation,” assuring Democrats and Republicans an equal share of judgeships.

The process allows the parties to “slate” candidates during the primary election with candidates who’ve provided donations to the parties. The suit claims the slating process deprives voters an opportunity to cast meaningful ballots during general elections.

Young on Thursday rejected state objections to his order denying a motion to dismiss the case. In refusing to certify the interlocutory appeal, he said the state’s concerns about lengthy discovery and costly pre-trial preparation were unpersuasive.

“This case involves a constitutional challenge to a state statute which governs the manner in which judges are elected to the Marion Superior Court. As such, any discovery that will be required will be limited and easily completed. And, once discovery is completed, this case will most likely be decided on summary judgment,” Young wrote.




   

 

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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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