Archive for the ‘legal news’ Category

  • Debate Map: Russia’s Use of Force in Ukraine

    Oxford University Press is hosting a webpage that looks at the arguments surrounding the use of force in both the international and domestic context. Read more...
  • SCOTUS Ruling a Blow for Rails to Trails

    The US Supreme Court’s 8-1 ruling in favor of a Wyoming land owner fight the conversion of an abandoned rail track into part of the Medicine Bow Rail Trail.  Justice Sotomayor, lone dissenter in Marvin Brandt Revocable Trust v. United States, said: “By changing course today, the Court undermines the legality of thousands of miles […] Read more...
  • Should Rap Lyrics Be Allowed As Evidence?

    With the increasing reliance of police detectives and prosecutors on boastful rap lyrics to arrest and prosecute suspects, courts are having to determine how these lyrics should be treated in court.  Prosecutors argue that the lyrics are essentially confessions but others say that the lyrics use creative license to describe life in ridden areas.  As […] Read more...
  • New RPC on Unethical Use of Immigration Status in Civil Matters

    Washington has a new rule of professional conduct that prohibits harassment, intimidation or coercion of litigants based on immigration status. To read more about the background and the inception of RPC 4.4(a) see the Northwest Lawyer article. Read more...
  • The Curious Silence of Clarence Thomas

    According to New Yorker reporter Jeffrey Toobin, “As of this Saturday, February 22nd, eight years will have passed since Clarence Thomas last asked a question during a Supreme Court oral argument. His behavior on the bench has gone from curious to bizarre to downright embarrassing, for himself and for the institution he represents.” Toobin offers […] Read more...
  • The Biggest Loser: Washington Supreme Court Edition

    State Senator Mike Baumgartner  (R-Spokane) introduced a bill (SB6088) on January 15th that would put the Washington Supreme Court on a drastic diet effectively reducing the size of the Court from 9 justices to 7.  Critics say that the measure ,which was shortly followed by two more bills introduced by Baumgartner and aimed squarely at […] Read more...
  • Is there a Legal Framework for choosing Olympic Athletes?

    As another Olympics approaches, you probably never wonder what the authority is for the way the team that represents the United States is chosen.  You probably never wonder but certain librarians do.  There is nothing in the Constitution . . . so perhaps it is statutory?  Yes, it is.  Congress created the U.S. Olympic Committee […] Read more...
  • Temperance and Good Citizenship Day

    January 16th is Temperance and Good Citizenship Day this year (according to the Washington Legislature).  The statute says that public schools “shall duly prepare and publish for circulation among the teachers of the state a program for use on such day embodying topics pertinent thereto . . .”  If you know a teacher or student, […] Read more...
  • Why the Seattle Public Library Surrendered Its Gun Ban

    In November of last year the Seattle Public Library changed its policy banning guns in the library.  The ban originated in 2008 under Mayor Nickles  and had been in place since then.  Why the change?   Read more...
  • The Abuse of Civil Forfeiture

    Civil forfeiture laws were originally enacted to allow the seizure of illegally obtained property. Whereas criminal forfeiture laws require a conviction before a property can be confiscated, civil forfeiture laws have a much lower threshold for seizure.  In some jurisdictions, civil forfeiture is being used to make up budget short falls. Sarah Stillman’s article Taken in […] Read more...