Law & Politics

Common Cause, ACLU sue over Marion County judge slating

November 2, 2012
Dave Stafford
The way Marion Superior judges are elected is unconstitutional, a suit filed Thursday by Common Cause and the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana alleges.
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7th Circuit affirms block on Planned Parenthood defunding

October 23, 2012
Dave Stafford
An injunction against an Indiana law that blocks state Medicaid funding for Planned Parenthood has been upheld by the U.S. 7th Circuit Court of Appeals.
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Lake County judge: RTW suit may proceed

October 19, 2012
IL Staff
A challenge to Indiana’s right-to-work law will proceed after a Lake County judge this week rejected the state’s request to dismiss a lawsuit filed by United Steelworkers.
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CCEC Work Group proposes sweeping revision to the Indiana Criminal Code

September 12, 2012
Marilyn Odendahl
The Indiana General Assembly’s Criminal Code Evaluation Commission has started another round of hearings to collect data and recommendations for revising the state’s criminal statutes. A key element of this review will be an extensive study of significant sections of Title 35 by the CCEC Work Group.
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LSA leaves opinions at the door

September 12, 2012
In a world of partisan wrangling, the  Legislative Services Agency has “jealously guarded” its nonpartisan nature.
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Struggles mount for labor

August 1, 2012
Dave Stafford
Indiana this year became the 23rd state to enact a right-to-work law in which workers cannot be compelled to pay union dues. Within months, individual workers in union shops opted out, even as court challenges linger.
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Indiana's new laws starting July 1, 2012

June 20, 2012
IL Staff
Many of the laws enacted during the 2012 legislative session take effect July 1. This list includes enrolled acts, along with newly assigned public law numbers, that have full or partial July 1 effective dates.
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Labor law to be key issue in 2012

December 7, 2011
Jenny Montgomery
Indiana legislators disagree about merits of right-to-work legislation.
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Barnes panel OKs proposed law changes

November 11, 2011
Michael Hoskins
A legislative study committee has approved proposed changes to state law that it hopes the Indiana General Assembly will consider in response to a state Supreme Court decision earlier this year.
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Symposium marks anniversary of Nunn-Lugar Act

November 4, 2011
IL Staff
Indiana University will mark the 20th anniversary of the Nunn-Lugar Cooperative Threat Reduction Program with a symposium Nov. 11 on its Bloomington campus.
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Immigrant students receive diverted sentences

June 15, 2011
Jenny Montgomery
On June 14, five undocumented immigrant students received diverted sentences for criminal trespass charges stemming from an incident in May in Gov. Mitch Daniels' office.
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New judicial selection battle ahead?

June 8, 2011
Michael Hoskins
Indiana may soon see its next battle over how the state’s top judges are selected.
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Students push for immigration reform

May 25, 2011
Jenny Montgomery
House Enrolled Act 1402 may make tuition unaffordable for some students.
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Lawmakers resume debate on issues impacting state courts

April 13, 2011
Michael Hoskins
Both federal and state lawmakers seem to be letting the clock tick down to the final seconds.
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Government shutdown would have little impact on federal legal system

April 8, 2011
Michael Hoskins
Even if the U.S. Congress fails to pass a short-term budget measure and prevent a government shutdown before midnight Friday, the various arms of the Indiana federal legal community will remain operating mostly as usual – at least for the time being.
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Case asks whether school board members can run for political office

April 1, 2011
Michael Hoskins
A Lake Superior judge may not be breaking any new legal ground with an election-related ruling this week, but he’s set the stage for an appeal that could clear up confusion about whether nonpartisan school board members must give up their right to run for a public office that requires the candidate to declare their political party affiliation.
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House Republicans vote to fine absent Democrats

March 3, 2011
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana House Republicans passed a motion Thursday fining the Democrats who fled to Illinois last week $250 a day until a quorum is present.
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Politics pivotal in legal world

December 22, 2010
Michael Hoskins
Some may say law and politics go together like love and marriage, but it’s more than a cliché when looking at how the Indiana legal community is being influenced and even transformed by the political process.
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General Assembly ready for new session's business

November 24, 2010
Michael Hoskins
With a new legislative session on the horizon, the Indiana General Assembly is going to be one to watch as it likely tackles a multitude of issues influencing the state’s legal community.
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New national act would address adult guardianship matters

November 10, 2010
Michael Hoskins
New law changes are on the horizon in order to create more uniform guardianship laws throughout the country and reduce conflicts between states.
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'Greening Statehouse' event at IU-Indy

November 3, 2010
IL Staff
The Hoosier Environmental Council’s third annual “Greening the Statehouse” happens Saturday at Indiana University School of Law – Indianapolis.
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Commission on Courts makes recommendations

October 27, 2010
Michael Hoskins
As the interim legislative calendar wound down to make way for the next Indiana General Assembly session, the Commission on Courts has made recommendations on new court requests and discussed issues that impact funding and structure of statewide trial courts.
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Judges' right to bear arms (sometimes)

October 27, 2010
Michael Hoskins
The Commission on Courts didn't recommend any state statute changes that would have allowed judges authority to carry weapons in places county ordinances or laws currently prevent.
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Anti-piracy legislation tackles IP enforcement

October 13, 2010
Michael Hoskins
The notion of pirates pillaging treasures and bartering it on the high seas isn’t that far fetched for Indianapolis intellectual property attorney Jonathan Polak.
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Lake Circuit candidate can stay on ballot for now

September 14, 2010
Michael Hoskins
A Highland attorney is back on the ballot for a Lake Circuit judge opening after he received a temporary restraining order that says the Indiana Election Commission shouldn’t have removed his name as a candidate for the general election.
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  1. Applause, applause, applause ..... but, is this duty to serve the constitutional order not much more incumbent upon the State, whose only aim is to be pure and unadulterated justice, than defense counsel, who is also charged with gaining a result for a client? I agree both are responsible, but it seems to me that the government attorneys bear a burden much heavier than defense counsel .... "“I note, much as we did in Mechling v. State, 16 N.E.3d 1015 (Ind. Ct. App. 2014), trans. denied, that the attorneys representing the State and the defendant are both officers of the court and have a responsibility to correct any obvious errors at the time they are committed."

  2. Do I have to hire an attorney to get co-guardianship of my brother? My father has guardianship and my older sister was his co-guardian until this Dec 2014 when she passed and my father was me to go on as the co-guardian, but funds are limit and we need to get this process taken care of quickly as our fathers health isn't the greatest. So please advise me if there is anyway to do this our self or if it requires a lawyer? Thank you

  3. I have been on this program while on parole from 2011-2013. No person should be forced mentally to share private details of their personal life with total strangers. Also giving permission for a mental therapist to report to your parole agent that your not participating in group therapy because you don't have the financial mean to be in the group therapy. I was personally singled out and sent back three times for not having money and also sent back within the six month when you aren't to be sent according to state law. I will work to het this INSOMM's removed from this state. I also had twelve or thirteen parole agents with a fifteen month period. Thanks for your time.

  4. Our nation produces very few jurists of the caliber of Justice DOUGLAS and his peers these days. Here is that great civil libertarian, who recognized government as both a blessing and, when corrupted by ideological interests, a curse: "Once the investigator has only the conscience of government as a guide, the conscience can become ‘ravenous,’ as Cromwell, bent on destroying Thomas More, said in Bolt, A Man For All Seasons (1960), p. 120. The First Amendment mirrors many episodes where men, harried and harassed by government, sought refuge in their conscience, as these lines of Thomas More show: ‘MORE: And when we stand before God, and you are sent to Paradise for doing according to your conscience, *575 and I am damned for not doing according to mine, will you come with me, for fellowship? ‘CRANMER: So those of us whose names are there are damned, Sir Thomas? ‘MORE: I don't know, Your Grace. I have no window to look into another man's conscience. I condemn no one. ‘CRANMER: Then the matter is capable of question? ‘MORE: Certainly. ‘CRANMER: But that you owe obedience to your King is not capable of question. So weigh a doubt against a certainty—and sign. ‘MORE: Some men think the Earth is round, others think it flat; it is a matter capable of question. But if it is flat, will the King's command make it round? And if it is round, will the King's command flatten it? No, I will not sign.’ Id., pp. 132—133. DOUGLAS THEN WROTE: Where government is the Big Brother,11 privacy gives way to surveillance. **909 But our commitment is otherwise. *576 By the First Amendment we have staked our security on freedom to promote a multiplicity of ideas, to associate at will with kindred spirits, and to defy governmental intrusion into these precincts" Gibson v. Florida Legislative Investigation Comm., 372 U.S. 539, 574-76, 83 S. Ct. 889, 908-09, 9 L. Ed. 2d 929 (1963) Mr. Justice DOUGLAS, concurring. I write: Happy Memorial Day to all -- God please bless our fallen who lived and died to preserve constitutional governance in our wonderful series of Republics. And God open the eyes of those government officials who denounce the constitutions of these Republics by arbitrary actions arising out capricious motives.

  5. From back in the day before secularism got a stranglehold on Hoosier jurists comes this great excerpt via Indiana federal court judge Allan Sharp, dedicated to those many Indiana government attorneys (with whom I have dealt) who count the law as a mere tool, an optional tool that is not to be used when political correctness compels a more acceptable result than merely following the path that the law directs: ALLEN SHARP, District Judge. I. In a scene following a visit by Henry VIII to the home of Sir Thomas More, playwriter Robert Bolt puts the following words into the mouths of his characters: Margaret: Father, that man's bad. MORE: There is no law against that. ROPER: There is! God's law! MORE: Then God can arrest him. ROPER: Sophistication upon sophistication! MORE: No, sheer simplicity. The law, Roper, the law. I know what's legal not what's right. And I'll stick to what's legal. ROPER: Then you set man's law above God's! MORE: No, far below; but let me draw your attention to a fact I'm not God. The currents and eddies of right and wrong, which you find such plain sailing, I can't navigate. I'm no voyager. But in the thickets of law, oh, there I'm a forester. I doubt if there's a man alive who could follow me there, thank God... ALICE: (Exasperated, pointing after Rich) While you talk, he's gone! MORE: And go he should, if he was the Devil himself, until he broke the law! ROPER: So now you'd give the Devil benefit of law! MORE: Yes. What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil? ROPER: I'd cut down every law in England to do that! MORE: (Roused and excited) Oh? (Advances on Roper) And when the last law was down, and the Devil turned round on you where would you hide, Roper, the laws being flat? (He leaves *1257 him) This country's planted thick with laws from coast to coast man's laws, not God's and if you cut them down and you're just the man to do it d'you really think you would stand upright in the winds that would blow then? (Quietly) Yes, I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake. ROPER: I have long suspected this; this is the golden calf; the law's your god. MORE: (Wearily) Oh, Roper, you're a fool, God's my god... (Rather bitterly) But I find him rather too (Very bitterly) subtle... I don't know where he is nor what he wants. ROPER: My God wants service, to the end and unremitting; nothing else! MORE: (Dryly) Are you sure that's God! He sounds like Moloch. But indeed it may be God And whoever hunts for me, Roper, God or Devil, will find me hiding in the thickets of the law! And I'll hide my daughter with me! Not hoist her up the mainmast of your seagoing principles! They put about too nimbly! (Exit More. They all look after him). Pgs. 65-67, A MAN FOR ALL SEASONS A Play in Two Acts, Robert Bolt, Random House, New York, 1960. Linley E. Pearson, Atty. Gen. of Indiana, Indianapolis, for defendants. Childs v. Duckworth, 509 F. Supp. 1254, 1256 (N.D. Ind. 1981) aff'd, 705 F.2d 915 (7th Cir. 1983)

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