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Senate votes on federal magistrate's nomination

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By now, Indiana may have its newest federal judge in the Southern District of Indiana.

The U.S. Senate was scheduled to vote on the confirmation of U.S. Magistrate Judge Jane Magnus-Stinson at 5:30 p.m. June 7, which came after the deadline for this story. Confirmation approval meant that a woman who’s been on the federal bench for more than three years as a magistrate would be promoted to a constitutionally created Article III judgeship.

This news came almost five months after President Barack Obama nominated her for the federal post, following last summer’s change when U.S. Judge Larry McKinney took senior status. She had notified Indiana’s Democratic Sen. Evan Bayh about her interest in the spot last November, and her nomination in January came at the same time the president chose Marion Superior Judge Tanya Walton Pratt for a Southern District vacancy and Jon DeGuilio for a judgeship in the Northern District of Indiana.

The Senate Judiciary Committee approved all three nominations in March. Following the recent legislative action, only Judge Pratt awaits a potential date for a confirmation vote. Senators unanimously confirmed DeGuilio May 11 to fill the seat occupied by U.S. Judge Allen Sharp until his death last summer.
Spokesman Brian Weiss in Bayh’s office in Washington, D.C., said at IL deadline that there was no indication when senators might turn to the nomination of Judge Pratt, who would fill an opening left by Judge David F. Hamilton when he was elevated to the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals.

With a possible green light for Magistrate Magnus-Stinson, the Southern District would have to fill the magistrate spot left open by her elevation. She left the Marion Superior bench in early 2007 following the retirement of U.S. Magistrate Judge V. Sue Shields, and a new vacancy would mean a merit-selection committee would be named to choose a new magistrate.

Prior to the senators’ final vote on Magistrate Magnus-Stinson, Chief Judge Richard Young said that if she received confirmation he hoped the process to find a new magistrate would begin quickly and that a successor could be chosen by the fall.

The most current coverage on this nomination process and confirmation vote can be found online at the Indiana Lawyer website, www.theindianalawyer.com.•
 

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  1. It's a big fat black mark against the US that they radicalized a lot of these Afghan jihadis in the 80s to fight the soviets and then when they predictably got around to biting the hand that fed them, the US had to invade their homelands, install a bunch of corrupt drug kingpins and kleptocrats, take these guys and torture the hell out of them. Why for example did the US have to sodomize them? Dubya said "they hate us for our freedoms!" Here, try some of that freedom whether you like it or not!!! Now they got even more reasons to hate us-- lets just keep bombing the crap out of their populations, installing more puppet regimes, arming one faction against another, etc etc etc.... the US is becoming a monster. No wonder they hate us. Here's my modest recommendation. How about we follow "Just War" theory in the future. St Augustine had it right. How about we treat these obvious prisoners of war according to the Geneva convention instead of torturing them in sadistic and perverted ways.

  2. As usual, John is "spot-on." The subtle but poignant points he makes are numerous and warrant reflection by mediators and users. Oh but were it so simple.

  3. ACLU. Way to step up against the police state. I see a lot of things from the ACLU I don't like but this one is a gold star in its column.... instead of fighting it the authorities should apologize and back off.

  4. Duncan, It's called the RIGHT OF ASSOCIATION and in the old days people believed it did apply to contracts and employment. Then along came title vii.....that aside, I believe that I am free to work or not work for whomever I like regardless: I don't need a law to tell me I'm free. The day I really am compelled to ignore all the facts of social reality in my associations and I blithely go along with it, I'll be a slave of the state. That day is not today......... in the meantime this proposed bill would probably be violative of 18 usc sec 1981 that prohibits discrimination in contracts... a law violated regularly because who could ever really expect to enforce it along the millions of contracts made in the marketplace daily? Some of these so-called civil rights laws are unenforceable and unjust Utopian Social Engineering. Forcing people to love each other will never work.

  5. I am the father of a sweet little one-year-old named girl, who happens to have Down Syndrome. To anyone who reads this who may be considering the decision to terminate, please know that your child will absolutely light up your life as my daughter has the lives of everyone around her. There is no part of me that condones abortion of a child on the basis that he/she has or might have Down Syndrome. From an intellectual standpoint, however, I question the enforceability of this potential law. As it stands now, the bill reads in relevant part as follows: "A person may not intentionally perform or attempt to perform an abortion . . . if the person knows that the pregnant woman is seeking the abortion solely because the fetus has been diagnosed with Down syndrome or a potential diagnosis of Down syndrome." It includes similarly worded provisions abortion on "any other disability" or based on sex selection. It goes so far as to make the medical provider at least potentially liable for wrongful death. First, how does a medical provider "know" that "the pregnant woman is seeking the abortion SOLELY" because of anything? What if the woman says she just doesn't want the baby - not because of the diagnosis - she just doesn't want him/her? Further, how can the doctor be liable for wrongful death, when a Child Wrongful Death claim belongs to the parents? Is there any circumstance in which the mother's comparative fault will not exceed the doctor's alleged comparative fault, thereby barring the claim? If the State wants to discourage women from aborting their children because of a Down Syndrome diagnosis, I'm all for that. Purporting to ban it with an unenforceable law, however, is not the way to effectuate this policy.

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