Monday, December 16, 2013

Justice Canady Lets it Rip!


Has anyone else noticed an increasing devolution in tone between the majority and dissents up in Tally?

This important 5-2 decision allowing the League of Women Voters to depose legislative staff to establish discriminatory intent in the redistricting debacle is a win for Florida voters and for the Florida Constitution generally, but things are getting a tad ugly up there.

First, Justice Pariente (who has already made a significant impact on the Court since her retention) decries the dissent's "hyberbolic assertion" that the world will end as we know it thanks to this decision (I'm paraphrasing).

Then get a load of Justice Canady's opening paragraph in his dissent:
In this case, for the first time in the recorded history of our Republic, a court has ruled that state legislators are required to submit to interrogation in a civil case concerning their legislative activities. I dissent from this unprecedented decision—a decision which effectively abrogates the well-established common law legislative privilege and grievously violates the constitutional separation of powers.
I wonder what the first few drafts of that paragraph looked like before he settled on the above?
In this case, for the first time since before the dawn of man and protozoa crawled out of the genetic cesspool of our dark past and learned to walk upright, a court has ruled that state legislators are required to submit to interrogation in a civil case concerning their legislative activities. I dissent from this unprecedented, ridiculous, absurd, dumb and dumber, probably could have been a little better reasoned decision—a decision which destroys all hope for the future and will inexorably lead to the impending apocalypse (oh yeah) and which also btw violates the constitutional separation of powers.
I kid of course (though I actually like the first draft better)!

6 comments:

  1. GOP in panic mode because overall Florida is a democratic state - secure seats going out the window can be terrifying.

    I can't wait for their proposed referendum:

    The "I love Puppies...really really fair redistricting amendment"

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  2. Interrogation is a good first step. Next comes water-boarding!

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  3. seems overblown to me; the dissent was nothing out of the ordinary. plus, though I regularly disagree with the chief and former chief, they may be right on this one.

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  4. But Thornton went further, slamming the tribe in finding the fraud, racketeering and malpractice counts were without merit even if he had jurisdiction. "The record is utterly devoid of any evidence of criminal intent or intentional misconduct," he wrote in the order handed down Sunday.

    Motions for sanctions against the tribe and its lead attorney, Bernardo Roman III of Miami, are before Cooke and Thornton.

    Roman, according to a deposition of another tribal leader, William Osceola, is paid at least $250,000a month from the tribe.

    Thornton found no fraud, no misconduct, no fraudulent billing and no malpractice.

    He noted the tribe changed its argument on Lewis Tein's bills from an allegation of pure fraud to a claim the charges were "unreasonable." A review of the invoices found no "genuine issue of material fact," said Thornton, dispensing with allegations of malpractice, racketeering and fraud.

    "Not a single piece of evidence reveals, and no witness testified, that any work was done maliciously or simply not done," the judge wrote.

    He also said the tribe's own records and officers thoroughly undermined the lawsuit. Officials said they knew of no fraud by Lewis Tein, and financial records show all invoices were submitted and approved.

    Miami defense attorney William Barzee, a partner with Barzee Flores, who has supported Lewis Tein's position, called the ruling "total victory" for the firm.

    "It was definitely scathing," Barzee said.

    He also said the slash-and-burn litigation opens the tribe to sanctions.

    "I would not be sleeping well if I were the tribe's attorneys," Barzee said.

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  5. I have followed this case fairly closely. It is bad. Really bad. Sort of like seeing someone you don't particularly like get in an accident and then walking up to them and pouring salt in the wound, knowing they cannot hit you back. If there is a silver lining in all of this, maybe law schools and the CLE rackets can make this a case study on how not to practice law.

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  6. Shumie time for someone.....

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