Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Judicial Integrity

I find this unacceptable. As a lawyer, I am militant about judicial ethics. I believe that a judge or justice is entitled to hold whatever personal political convictions they want. I also believe that when the wife of a Supreme Court justice has a financial interest in certain outcomes, this creates, at a minimum, the appearance of a conflict of interest. And the law agrees with me.

Appearances matter. Especially after the partisan tragedy of Bush v. Gore*, I think it is essential that our judges do everything they can to minimize the appearance of political favoritism. Thomas' actions (or in this case, omissions) are not only questionable, but his excuse strains credulity. When the wife of a Supreme Court Justice has deep financial ties to right-wing advocacy organizations, I think we have a problem.

* - Lawyers, Guns & Money has several excellent posts, including this one, about how this was an abomination.

1 comment:

  1. Those wives can be really cause trouble.