Vote expected on Indiana federal magistrate

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A U.S. Senate committee is expected to discuss and vote Thursday on an Indianapolis federal magistrate judge's nomination for a judgeship in the Southern District of Indiana.

The U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee will conduct an executive business meeting at 10 a.m. to discuss several nominations, including that of U.S. Magistrate Judge Jane Magnus-Stinson for an Article III judgeship.

President Barack Obama nominated Magistrate Judge Magnus-Stinson in mid-January, along with Marion Superior Judge Tanya Walton Pratt for a second vacancy in the Southern District and Munster attorney Jon DeGuilio for a Northern District of Indiana opening.

The Senate Judiciary Committee approved Judge Pratt and DeGuilio March 4. They've been listed on the Senate's calendar, but no time is scheduled for senators to discuss and vote on them.

Senators held off discussion and voting March 4 on Magistrate Magnus-Stinson's nomination because ranking Republican member Sen. Jeff Sessions from Alabama wanted to personally follow up with her before voting.

Stephen Miller, a spokesperson for Sessions, told Indiana Lawyer that the senator had received a response from Magistrate Judge Magnus-Stinson late the night before about questions following her Feb. 11 nomination hearing, and he wanted to meet with her again. The two met Monday, but Miller declined to elaborate on that meeting. However, the online response from Magistrate Judge Magnus-Stinson shows the senator had concerns about her handling of capital cases, the death penalty, and recusal issues she's faced in the past.

If approved by the committee and confirmed by the full senate, Magistrate Magnus-Stinson would take the seat vacated by U.S. Judge Larry McKinney, who took senior status in July 2009. She is listed first on the Senate Judiciary's meeting agenda, and the hearing will be broadcast live on the Senate's Web site.


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  1. If a class action suit or other manner of retribution is possible, count me in. I have email and voicemail from the man. He colluded with opposing counsel, I am certain. My case was damaged so severely it nearly lost me everything and I am still paying dearly.

  2. There's probably a lot of blame that can be cast around for Indiana Tech's abysmal bar passage rate this last February. The folks who decided that Indiana, a state with roughly 16,000 to 18,000 attorneys, needs a fifth law school need to question the motives that drove their support of this project. Others, who have been "strong supporters" of the law school, should likewise ask themselves why they believe this institution should be supported. Is it because it fills some real need in the state? Or is it, instead, nothing more than a resume builder for those who teach there part-time? And others who make excuses for the students' poor performance, especially those who offer nothing more than conspiracy theories to back up their claims--who are they helping? What evidence do they have to support their posturing? Ultimately, though, like most everything in life, whether one succeeds or fails is entirely within one's own hands. At least one student from Indiana Tech proved this when he/she took and passed the February bar. A second Indiana Tech student proved this when they took the bar in another state and passed. As for the remaining 9 who took the bar and didn't pass (apparently, one of the students successfully appealed his/her original score), it's now up to them (and nobody else) to ensure that they pass on their second attempt. These folks should feel no shame; many currently successful practicing attorneys failed the bar exam on their first try. These same attorneys picked themselves up, dusted themselves off, and got back to the rigorous study needed to ensure they would pass on their second go 'round. This is what the Indiana Tech students who didn't pass the first time need to do. Of course, none of this answers such questions as whether Indiana Tech should be accredited by the ABA, whether the school should keep its doors open, or, most importantly, whether it should have even opened its doors in the first place. Those who promoted the idea of a fifth law school in Indiana need to do a lot of soul-searching regarding their decisions. These same people should never be allowed, again, to have a say about the future of legal education in this state or anywhere else. Indiana already has four law schools. That's probably one more than it really needs. But it's more than enough.

  3. This man Steve Hubbard goes on any online post or forum he can find and tries to push his company. He said court reporters would be obsolete a few years ago, yet here we are. How does he have time to search out every single post about court reporters and even spy in private court reporting forums if his company is so successful???? Dude, get a life. And back to what this post was about, I agree that some national firms cause a huge problem.

  4. rensselaer imdiana is doing same thing to children from the judge to attorney and dfs staff they need to be investigated as well

  5. Sex offenders are victims twice, once when they are molested as kids, and again when they repeat the behavior, you never see money spent on helping them do you. That's why this circle continues