Government

Indiana tunes in to national issues in federal courts

August 18, 2010
Michael Hoskins
What happens in Indiana regarding illegal immigration, same-sex marriage, and health-care reform may hinge on what happens with litigation playing out in the nation’s appellate courts.
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Class action suit challenges voter-removal statute

August 17, 2010
Michael Hoskins
State officials are prohibiting people convicted and incarcerated for misdemeanor offenses from voting while they are behind bars, but that could change if a federal suit is successful.
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Commission sends finalists letter to governor

August 6, 2010
Michael Hoskins
A 60-day clock has started for Gov. Mitch Daniels to choose the next Indiana Supreme Court justice, after three names were officially sent to him Thursday afternoon.
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Appellate rulings can create confusion for attorneys, trial judges

August 4, 2010
Michael Hoskins
Clear and concise court rulings are what judges hope can be produced, so that lawyers and lower courts can have guidance on how to address a particular legal issue. But that doesn’t always happen.
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Court upholds discrimination claims in coroner's office

July 27, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the finding that an African-American Marion County Coroner took action against his white chief deputy coroner because of race, but ordered a reduction in the amount of compensatory damages the deputy coroner could receive.
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Federal office: No Hatch Act violations in Dearborn County

July 27, 2010
Michael Hoskins
A federal government office has cleared two Dearborn County officials who’d been accused by the former county attorney of violating federal law that restricts political activity for those involved with federally funded programs.
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No issue with all legislative logrolling

July 21, 2010
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Supreme Court offered some clues recently about why it’s ignored repeated attempts to address the issue of legislative logrolling, where multiple unrelated changes are stuffed into one massive bill that becomes law.
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State changes victim alerts

July 21, 2010
Rebecca Berfanger
The Indiana Department of Correction recently changed how it will notify those who register to find out where someone is in the system, whether it’s a transfer from one jail to another, a change in status, or a legal hearing.
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Lawyer elected U.S. Libertarian Party officer

July 21, 2010
Peter Schnitzler
Mark Rutherford wants America’s third-largest political party to make inroads by showing competence at the grassroots level of government.
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Justices consider juvenile placements

July 21, 2010
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Supreme Court is considering a case where a St. Joseph County juvenile judge has declared unconstitutional three statutes involving child placements, a controversial issue that’s pitted many within the state judiciary against the Indiana Department of Child Services for the past two years.
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Prosecutor candidate drops out of race

July 16, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Democratic candidate for Gibson County Prosecutor has withdrawn from the race following his indictment on four charges, including possession of child pornography.
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Could Indiana adopt a law like Arizona's?

July 7, 2010
Rebecca Berfanger
Immigration attorneys and victims advocates are reading up on the Arizona illegal immigrant law and bracing themselves for what a similar bill in Indiana could mean for their clients.
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Judicial pay case gets ABA support

July 7, 2010
Michael Hoskins
The American Bar Association wants the Supreme Court of the United States to take a case that asks whether congressional denial of cost-of-living adjustments for federal judges compromises judicial independence and violates the Constitution.
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Partnership targets Indiana's corrections system

June 28, 2010
Elizabeth Brockett
To address Indiana’s growing prison population and increasing related costs, the state is partnering with The Pew Center on the States and the Council of State Governments Justice Center for the first comprehensive review of the state’s criminal code and sentencing policies since 1976.
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Robo-calls at issue in Indiana courts

June 23, 2010
Michael Hoskins
A line of litigation has been playing out in state and federal courts involving what is and isn't allowed under the Automatic Dialing Machines Statute.
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Idea for green tech patents gets mixed reviews

June 23, 2010
Michael Hoskins
A federal plan to boost green technology innovation by dramatically cutting the patent processing time is drawing mixed reaction from intellectual property attorneys in Indiana as they wonder whether the pilot program will help or hurt their clients.
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Judge Magnus-Stinson takes oath

June 15, 2010
IL Staff
The newest judge for the Southern District of Indiana was sworn in Monday to officially become a U.S. District Judge.
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Criminal tax evasion offers legal option in targeting dog, puppy mills

June 9, 2010
Michael Hoskins
A July 2009 law put more strength behind local prosecutors and state regulators who can now more diligently pursue illegal animal activity of puppy mills who don't pay taxes.
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County official wants review of new ethics leader

June 9, 2010
Michael Hoskins
A Dearborn County commissioner alleges the county’s former attorney has wrongly accused two officials of violating federal law and has asked the Indiana Supreme Court Disciplinary Commission to launch an investigation of its soon-to-be leader who starts in that office June 21.
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Court excited about magistrate's elevation

June 8, 2010
Michael Hoskins
Within a week, the state's third federal female judge could be ready to handle her constitutionally created duties in the Southern District of Indiana.
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Vote set on federal magistrate's nomination

June 1, 2010
Michael Hoskins
The U.S. Senate plans to vote Monday on an Indianapolis federal magistrate’s nomination for a constitutionally created judgeship in the Southern District of Indiana.
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7th Circuit won't stay ruling, despite likely SCOTUS appeal

May 28, 2010
Michael Hoskins
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals won’t stay its ruling that allows an independent state agency access to records about mentally ill inmates’ treatment, even though the Indiana government agency being sued is appealing to the Supreme Court of the United States.
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ISBA receives award for juvenile justice summit

May 21, 2010
Rebecca Berfanger
The Indiana State Bar Association has learned it will receive the LexisNexis 2010 Community and Educational Outreach Award for the “Summit on Racial Disparities in the Juvenile Justice System: A Statewide Dialogue,” which took place in August 2009.
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Attorney General promotes 2 of its own internally

May 21, 2010
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Attorney General’s Office has promoted one of its longtime lawyers to a second-in-command spot that means guiding 144 state government attorneys and working more closely with local prosecutors, police officers, and those in the county criminal justice systems.
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Indianapolis law school grad tapped to lead TSA

May 18, 2010
Michael Hoskins
A former Hoosier attorney who graduated from Indiana University School of Law - Indianapolis is now being tapped for a leading role at the federal agency responsible for strengthening security and screening measures at the nation's airports.
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  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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)

  4. "Meanwhile small- and mid-size firms are getting squeezed and likely will not survive unless they become a boutique firm." I've been a business attorney in small, and now mid-size firm for over 30 years, and for over 30 years legal consultants have been preaching this exact same mantra of impending doom for small and mid-sized firms -- verbatim. This claim apparently helps them gin up merger opportunities from smaller firms who become convinced that they need to become larger overnight. The claim that large corporations are interested in cost-saving and efficiency has likewise been preached for decades, and is likewise bunk. If large corporations had any real interest in saving money they wouldn't use large law firms whose rates are substantially higher than those of high-quality mid-sized firms.

  5. The family is the foundation of all human government. That is the Grand Design. Modern governments throw off this Design and make bureaucratic war against the family, as does Hollywood and cultural elitists such as third wave feminists. Since WWII we have been on a ship of fools that way, with both the elite and government and their social engineering hacks relentlessly attacking the very foundation of social order. And their success? See it in the streets of Fergusson, on the food stamp doles (mostly broken families)and in the above article. Reject the Grand Design for true social function, enter the Glorious State to manage social dysfunction. Our Brave New World will be a prison camp, and we will welcome it as the only way to manage given the anarchy without it.

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