The Costs of Janus v. AFSCME

Posted on Categories Business Regulation, Constitutional Interpretation, Constitutional Law, First Amendment, Labor & Employment Law, Legal Profession, Marquette Law School, Public, Speakers at Marquette, U.S. Supreme CourtLeave a comment» on The Costs of Janus v. AFSCME

Photo of statue depicting a bust of Janus, the two-headed Roman God.On April 10 I participated in a panel discussion sponsored by the Law School Chapter of the Federalist Society.  The presentation was entitled “Lawyers, Plaintiffs, and Professors, Oh My!: Janus v. AFSCME.”  The other panelists were Adjunct Professor and Director of the Law Library Elana Olson, Alumnus Daniel Suhr from the Liberty Justice Center , and Mark Janus, the name plaintiff in the case of Janus v. AFSCME.  What follows are my prepared remarks.

In June of 2018 the United States Supreme Court held, in the case of Janus v. AFSCME, that it is a violation of the First Amendment for State and public sector unions to assess mandatory agency fees to non-consenting employees.  The majority of the Court held that forcing non-union workers to contribute money to support non-political activities which benefit all workers violates the Free Speech rights of non-consenting employees.

In so holding, the Court overruled a precedent of over 40 years, Abood v. Detroit Board of Education, a 1977 case that had upheld the practice against a First Amendment challenge.

Opposition to labor unions and collective bargaining rights is a policy choice held by many political conservatives today, but it was not always the position of the Republican Party.  One of the early icons of the conservative political movement in the United States, Whittaker Chambers, was himself a union member at times in his career, he was supportive of the labor movement, and his wife and many of his relatives were union members.

This icon of political conservatism in the 1950s and 1960s supported collective bargaining rights so much, that when the parent of the conservative National Review Magazine gave an award named after Whittaker Chambers to our guest Mark Janus, in recognition of his participation in the Janus v. AFSCME litigation, the family of Whittaker Chambers objected to their father’s name being associated with the case. Continue reading “The Costs of Janus v. AFSCME”

Israel Reflections 2019—Shared Society

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One key focus of our trip was all of the organizations working on shared society across groups in Israel. Our day of shared society started at Sindyanna of Galilee with a Za’atar workshop. Sindyanna of Galilee is a non-profit organization that employs Arab and Jewish women who aim to create a peaceful coexistence between the two cultures. The students were able to create their own Za’atar after hearing from employees on how they strive to create peace. (This was delicious! And all available on Amazon too…)

We then headed towards Nazareth to have lunch and see The Basilica of Annunciation. When we arrived there was a service in progress in front of the Grotto of the Annunciation. For student Margaret Spring it was one of the most breathtaking experiences she has ever had in a church. “Being at one of the most sacred Christian sites in the world while a congregation was singing is something that I will never forget.”

Our next stop was Givat Haviva. Givat Haviva is dedicated to promoting mutual responsibility, civic equality and cooperation between divided groups in Israel as the foundation for building a shared future and shared society—critical elements of a sustainable and thriving Israeli democracy. While there, we visited the divided city of Barta’a.

Student Mercy De La Rosa wrote a thoughtful self-reflection that is shared in full about her experience at Givat Haviva and how that compared to her childhood in El Paso near the Mexican at the Texas border.

 

 

Walking through the rolling green lawns of Givat Haviva, it was hard not to draw comparisons to college campuses across America with laughing students stretched out on beautiful trimmed lawns. This, however, is no idyllic American campus. Instead here Muslims and Jews strive to work together bridging differences and embracing commonalities. Clearly underneath the beautiful surface there has been a lot of hard work in community building and deep difficult conversations. Armed with cookies, coffee, and a razor-sharp witted Welsh guide we trekked to the Barta’a….Driving up to the town, I never imagined what was in wait for me. Driving up Lydia shared a heartbreaking story of how she often felt like a person divided, split between friendships on what at first glance seems like diametrically opposed sides. In hindsight, that story should have prepared me for the painfully wonderful parallels that would be presented between my home city of El Paso Texas and Barta’a. As we walked through the city, I was vaguely reminded of downtown El Paso until we hit the market area where all I could see was memories of Juarez. Granted it has been at this point almost 12 years since I have been to Juarez, but to me it felt like someone had just put up Arabic signs instead of ones in Spanish. As we ascended into the mountains to better see the divide, it was like looking out from Scenic Drive where you can see the connection of the two downtowns. From that viewpoint almost seamlessly merging into one another. On closer examination you can see the border but looking at it from a distance it is more a feeling than articulable distinguishing characteristics….This small town shook me to my core, serving as a stark reminder that though we may travel far from home sometimes it is the familiar that frightens and motivates us the most.

[Cross-posted at Indisputably.]

Congratulations to the 2019 Jenkins Honors Moot Court Finalists

Posted on Categories Legal Education, Legal Practice, Lubar Center, Marquette Law School, Public1 Comment on Congratulations to the 2019 Jenkins Honors Moot Court Finalists

Picture of courtroom with judges on the bench and student advocates seated at tablesCongratulations to the winners of the 2019 Jenkins Honors Moot Court Competition, Brooke Erickson and Micaela Haggenjos. Congratulations also go to finalists Luis Gutierrez and Nicholas Wanic. Erickson and Haggenjos additionally won the Franz C. Eschweiler Prize for Best Brief, and Erickson won the Ramon A. Klitzke Prize for Best Oralist.

The competitors argued before a packed house in the Lubar Center. Presiding over the final round were Hon. Charles R. Wilson (11th Circuit Court of Appeals), Hon. Daniel Kelly (Wisconsin Supreme Court), and Hon. Lisa K. Stark (Wisconsin Court of Appeals).

Many thanks to the judges and competitors for their hard work, enthusiasm, and sportsmanship in all the rounds of competition. Thank you, too, to the Law School administration and staff for their work in putting on the event. Special thanks to Dean Kearney for his support of the competition.

Thank you as well to the Moot Court Association for its work in putting this event together, and especially to 3L Sadie Olson, who so adeptly handled the details of the competition.

Students are selected to participate in the competition based on their success in the fall Appellate Writing and Advocacy class at the Law School.

Here is a link to the video of the final round.

Israel Reflections—Golan Heights, the Galilee and the Druze

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The group had a memorable night at the kibbutz and were very sad to leave the cozy cottages we were able to stay in. Our busy day (Tuesday) of sight-seeing started with a visit to Mount Bental. At the peak of Mt. Bental we had views of Golan and Syria. Taylor Brisco and her friends went into the army bunker to imagine what it was like to be a solider during the 1973 Yom Kippur War. Ms. Brisco said “Visiting Mount Bental was one of my favorite activities due to the historical significance of the mountain peak and also for the amazing view of Golan—and even Syria.” Below is a view from the bunker over to Mt. Hermon where this is still snow…

View from Mount Bental, Israel

Continue reading “Israel Reflections—Golan Heights, the Galilee and the Druze”

Israel Reflections 2019–A Visit to Palestine

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On Sunday afternoon, we headed to the West Bank aka Palestine, and again had an amazing new experience for me.   It was also pretty impactful for the students as you will read below.  We had with us for the entire afternoon, the very talented Riman Barakat, a Fulbright scholar who completed her studies at Marquette and perennial speaker to our group.  As a native of East Jerusalem, Riman also serves as a Director for East Jerusalem and Palestinian Relations for Jerusalem Season of Culture. Continue reading “Israel Reflections 2019–A Visit to Palestine”

The Marquette Law Review is Quoted by CNN News

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Marquette Law Review CoverA quote from and a link to a student-written comment in the Marquette Law Review made it into a CNN story this week.

CNN reported that on Friday President Trump criticized the Flores Settlement. According to CNN, he said, “We’ve had some very bad court decisions. The Flores decision is a disaster, I have to tell you. Judge Flores, whoever you may be, that decision is a disaster for our country. A disaster.”

The Flores Settlement, a settlement agreement from Reno v. Flores that limits the amount of time that immigrant children can be detained and governs the conditions under which those children can be detained, is actually named after the plaintiff in that case, Jenny Lisette Flores. Flores had fled El Salvador as a teenager.

CNN then briefly explained the Flores case, quoting from the comment, Codifying the Flores Settlement Agreement: Seeking to Protect Immigrant Children in U.S. Custody:

[Flores] fled her country in 1985 and tried to enter the United States to be with her aunt. The former government agency Immigration and Naturalization Service arrested her at the border, and she was placed in a juvenile detention center, where she was handcuffed and strip-searched, according to the Marquette Law Review. The INS refused to grant her aunt custody of Jenny because it wouldn’t release minors to “third-party adults,” the law review article said.

The link brought readers to the 2012 comment authored by Rebeca M. López (L’12), who was then a student at Marquette University Law School. Lopez is now an associate attorney at Godfrey & Kahn, S.C., in Milwaukee.

*Hat tip to Tyler Wickman (L’08) for noticing the CNN story. Tyler will be our May Alumni Blogger of the Month.

Jenkins Honors Moot Court Competitors Advance to Finals

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Congratulations to the students in the Jenkins Honors Moot Court Competition who have moved on to the final round of the competition, to be held Thursday, April 11, at 5:15 p.m.

The following teams will be competing in the semifinals:

Nicholas Wanic and Luis Gutierrez

Brooke Erickson and Micaela Haggenjos

The final round will be judged by The Honorable Charles Wilson (U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit), The Honorable Daniel Kelly (Wisconsin Supreme Court), and The Honorable Lisa Stark (Wisconsin Court of Appeals).

The Jenkins Completion is named in honor of the late James G. Jenkins, the first Wisconsin judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit (1893-1905) and the first dean of Marquette Law School (1908-1915).

The event is free and open to the public, but registration is required. You can register with this on-line registration link.

Jenkins Honors Moot Court Competitors Advance to Semifinals

Posted on Categories Legal Education, Legal Writing, Marquette Law School, Public1 Comment on Jenkins Honors Moot Court Competitors Advance to Semifinals

Congratulations to the students in the Jenkins Honors Moot Court Competition who have moved on to the semifinal round of the competition. The students will be competing tomorrow, Sunday, April 7 at 10 a.m. to determine which two teams will be advancing to the final round on Thursday, April 11, at 5:15 p.m.

The following teams will be competing in the semifinals:

Nicholas Wanic and Luis Gutierrez

Julie Leary and Elizabeth Elving

Brooke Erickson and Micaela Haggenjos

Cole Dunn and Peter Klepacz

The final round of the Jenkins competition will take place on Thursday, April 11, at 5:15 p.m. in the Lubar Center. The final round will be judged by The Honorable Charles Wilson (U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit), The Honorable Daniel Kelly (Wisconsin Supreme Court), and The Honorable Lisa Stark (Wisconsin Court of Appeals).

The event is free and open to the public, but registration is required. You can register with this on-line registration link.

Congratulations to all the participants in the competition. Thank you also to all the alumni and other attorneys and judges who volunteered to grade briefs and serve as judges in the four preliminary rounds and in the quarterfinal rounds. We appreciate their time and assistance every year.

Remembering Professor Ray Klitzke

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Headshot photo of Professor Ray Klitzke wearing a suit and tie.The Marquette Law School community was saddened to learn of the death March 29 of Emeritus Professor of Law Ramon (“Ray”) Klitzke.  He was 90 years old.

Named by his mother after silent screen star Ramon Novarro, Ray had ramrod straight posture and an athletic build.  He was a competitive swimmer and diver throughout his life.  He cut a dashing figure in the hallways of Sensenbrenner Hall, not unlike his namesake.

Ray was a devoted teacher and scholar.  Ray also served the Wisconsin State Bar in a variety of capacities during his career, serving at various times as Reporter for the Local Government Section, Reporter for the Administrative Law Section and Chairman of the  Patent, Trademark & Copyright Section.  During Ray’s tenure as a full time faculty member, I doubt that there was a single Annual Meeting of the Wisconsin State Bar that did not include Ray on the agenda in some form, usually as a presenter providing an update on recent legal developments in his field.

Ray retired from the Marquette Law School faculty in 1994.

I valued ray as a friend, as a colleague, and as a valuable contributor to the Wisconsin legal community.  He leaves his wife Doris, his children Ramon, Albert and Ann and their spouses, and an extended family of grandchildren and great grandchildren.

Services will be held tomorrow April 5 at Saint John’s Lutheran Church in Brookfield.  More information about Ray’s life, the visitation and services is available here.

 

Israel Reflections 2019–Holy Sites in the Old City

Posted on Categories International Law & Diplomacy, Legal Education, Marquette Law School, Public, Religion & LawLeave a comment» on Israel Reflections 2019–Holy Sites in the Old City

On our second full day in Israel, we visited the Old City to gain perspective at how the crossroads of religion all seem to meet here. And, for the first time, we could actually ascend to the top of the Temple Mount to see the Dome of the Rock up close. (I had not been able to do this since 1992!)

Haley Stepanek was in awe of how “Billions of people revere this site as one of the holiest on earth: for Muslims, Temple Mount contains the Dome of the Rock and Al-Aqsa Mosque; for Jews, it is the site where Abraham sacrificed his son Isaac to God,” and the site of the first and second Temples. In fact, our visit to the Temple Mount happened just days before it was again temporarily closed when news broke that a Molotov cocktail was thrown on the grounds of Temple Mount. This event, and many events that happened around us while we were on this trip, gave everyone a sense of how present the conflict is. Continue reading “Israel Reflections 2019–Holy Sites in the Old City”

Garry Wills to Speak at Marquette Law School

Posted on Categories Constitutional Interpretation, Constitutional Law, Legal History, Marquette Law School, Political Processes & Rhetoric, Public, Speakers at MarquetteLeave a comment» on Garry Wills to Speak at Marquette Law School
Author Garry Wills dressed in a suit and tie speaks at a public event.
Author Garry Wills

On April 18 at 4 pm Pulitzer Prize winning author Garry Wills will speak at the Marquette University Law School.  The topic of his talk is “Does Democracy Protect Human Rights? Constitution vs. Plebiscite.”

The event is sponsored by a grant from the UW Stout’s Center for the Study of Institutions and Innovation.

Garry Wills is Professor Emeritus of history and a cultural historian at Northwestern University. His many books include studies of George Washington, Richard Nixon, the Kennedy family, Ronald Reagan, and religion in America. His 1992 book, “Lincoln at Gettysburg: The Words That Remade America,” won the 1993 Pulitzer Prize for General Nonfiction and the 1992 National Book Critics Circle Award for Criticism. Wills won the 1979 Merle Curti Award from the Organization of American Historians and the 1978 National Book Critics Circle Award for General Nonfiction for his 1978 book, “Inventing America: Jefferson’s Declaration of Independence.” Wills has also been awarded the National Humanities Medal, and he was inducted as a laureate of The Lincoln Academy of Illinois and awarded the Order of Lincoln. His most recent book is “What The Qur’an Meant and Why It Matters.”

The event is free and open to the public, but advance registration is requested.

 

Giessen is a Go!

Posted on Categories International Law & Diplomacy, Legal Education, Marquette Law School, Public, UncategorizedLeave a comment» on Giessen is a Go!
About 30 law students in semi-formal attire pose in a group photo in front of an administration building at Justus Liebig University.
Group Photo of the 2014 Participants in the Giessen Program

The 2019 Summer Session in International and Comparative Law, commonly know at the Marquette University Law School as “the Giessen Program,” has been approved and will take place July 20 through August 15   on the campus of Justus Liebig University in Giessen, Germany.

There are still a small number of spots available for additional Marquette law students, students at the University of Wisconsin Law School, and students from other U.S. law schools.  Information on the program is available at the Marquette University Law School website or by emailing Professor Ed Fallone at edward.fallone@marquette.edu.

If you are interested in applying for the 2019 program, do not delay.