12 Stories

Judge: I'm 'Mortified' by What It Took to Win Seat

Alabama's Sue Bell Cobb says money is fouling our justice system

(Newser) - Sue Bell Cobb served as chief justice on Alabama's Supreme Court from 2007 to 2011, and while this may be a shining personal achievement for her, Cobb is also "mortified" by what she had to do to win the seat. Essentially, beg for money. As she explains in... More »

Judges' $1M Maui Trip Turns Heads in Congress

Ninth Circuit conference would include full-service spa

(Newser) - US senators are scrutinizing a planned Maui getaway for circuit court judges that could cost more than $1 million in taxpayer dollars, Fox News reports. Scheduled for August, the Ninth Circuit Judicial Conference would allow judges, attorneys, staff, and "special guests" to stay at a Hyatt Regency resort spa... More »

Special Interests Control Our Judges

Campaign cash compromises their integrity: Adam Cohen

(Newser) - It’s not just legislative and executive elections that are unfairly influenced by big money. America needs to wake up to the power of special interests in judicial elections, writes Adam Cohen in Time . A new study sees “big business, corporate lobbyists, and trial lawyers” spending cash to get... More »

Judges Really Like to Quote Bob Dylan

Even Chief Justice Roberts has cited his lyrics

(Newser) - When judges want to give their opinions a lyrical flourish, many turn first to Bob Dylan. He’s the most-cited musician in court opinions and briefs, experts tell the Los Angeles Times . That’s because his early songs give voice to political and legal concerns—and they emerged when today’... More »

As Threats Soar, Court Officials Pack Heat

Judges, prosecutors hire guards, carry guns after string of slayings

(Newser) - Judges and prosecutors are facing a huge upswing in threats, driving many to carry guns or get 24-hour guard protection, the Washington Post reports. Threats against federal court officials have jumped from 592 to 1,278 in the past 6 years. “I live with a constant heightened sense of... More »

Spain's Human Rights Probes Spark Backlash

(Newser) - Judges in Spain are pressing human rights cases against top officials around the world, prompting threats abroad and criticisms at home, the Washington Post reports. Invoking so-called universal jurisdiction, judges are probing 16 cases, including US approval of torture and Israeli attacks on the Gaza Strip. But nervous Spanish lawmakers... More »

Paula Will Face Dancing Judges

American Idol jurist adds new primetime gig

(Newser) - Prepare to savor the sweet redemption of a judge—albeit a nice one—being judged: Paula Abdul is “very excited” to be a contestant on next season's Dancing with the Stars, Radar reports. The singer-turned-American Idol judge made no secret of the fact that she was “shopping around”... More »

Obama Court Would Threaten Foundation of US Democracy

'Left-wing ideologue' threatens representative governance if elected

(Newser) - Before electing a “left-wing ideologue,” Americans should reconsider who “moderate-posing” Barack Obama would put on the Supreme Court, Edward Whelan writes in the National Review. The Democrat will select ultra-liberals for a bench already “markedly to the left of the American public,” he cautions: “... More »

Oktoberfest Brews Gotta Be 'Poundable'

A tasting panel names the best in Bavarian style

(Newser) - To wash down sausages, sauerkraut, and pretzels, Oktoberfest beer must flow like a dinner wine: "Worthy of attention without demanding to be the center of attention," writes Eric Asimov in the New York Times. And with festive consumption measured in liters, it must also be "poundable."... More »

American Idol Adds Fourth Judge

Songwriter Kara DioGuardi to join Cowell and company

(Newser) - American Idol is getting a fourth judge this season, marking what the New York Post calls the biggest change TV’s top show has ever undergone. Songwriter Kara DioGuardi will join Simon, Paula, and Randy, in a move producers say they always intended. All of Idol’s international counterparts feature... More »

Pakistan Rivals Agree to Debate Fate of Judges

Bhutto's widower becomes frontrunner for Sept. 6 election

(Newser) - Pakistan's rival parties will debate next week whether to reinstate judges fired by ousted President Musharraf, a sign of compromise on an issue that has threatened to dissolve the ruling coalition, Reuters reports. Meanwhile, the nation's biggest party, the PPP, has nominated Benazir Bhutto's widower, Asif Ali Zardari, to replace... More »

Mexico Overhauls Justice System

Calderon signs sweeping reforms

(Newser) - Sweeping reforms of Mexico's criminal justice system were signed into law by President Felipe Calderon yesterday. US-style public trials and presumption of innocence will replace Mexico's slow, closed-door system that proceeds almost exclusively through briefs, reports the Washington Post. The reforms also give investigators power to hold suspects 80 days... More »

12 Stories