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Another Perspective on Willingham's Case:  Over the weekend, Homicide Survivors posted a piece by Janet Jacobs of the Corsicana Daily Sun on Texas' execution of Cameron Todd Willingham.  Jacobs piece, "No doubts," was published in the local paper of Corsicana, Texas where Cameron Todd Willingham lived with his family in 1991.  In early September, the New Yorker published an article, "Trial by Fire," wondering whether Willingham had committed the arson that he was executed for.  Jacobs article starts with a brief synopsis of Willingham's case:
"The undeniable facts of the Cameron Todd Willingham case are these:
• On Dec. 23, 1991, 2-year-old Amber Louise Kuykendall, and 1-year-old twins Karmon Diane Willingham and Kameron Marie Willingham died in a mid-morning house fire at 1213 W. 11th Ave. in Corsicana.
• Willingham, 23, the children's father, and the only adult home at the time of the fire, was found guilty of murder and sentenced to death on Aug. 21, 1992.
• After five appeals and 12 years on death row, he was put to death by lethal injection on Feb. 17, 2004.

Everything else is controversial.
Appointing a "Professional" Judiciary:  At Sentencing Law and Policy, Doug Berman posts his thoughts on Gerard Magliocca's Concurring Opinion's post "A Professional Judiciary?"  Both Berman and Magliocca are concerned that President Obama's "early pattern" of elevating lower court judges in his nomination choices could, in Magliocca's words, "harm[] the quality of the bench and creates undue pressure on District judges to act in a politically safe way in the hope of getting promoted."  Berman writes that he is a fan of judicial diversity, and believes that "federal circuit sentencing law might be improved by having more circuit judges who have experienced sentencing first-hand."

Washington Supreme Court Allows Warrant to Obtain Blood Alcohol Test of Drunk Driving Suspect:  At Volokh Conspiracy, Orin Kerr has a quick post on Seattle v. St. John, where the Washington Supreme Court said that police could get a warrant to force a blood alcohol test on a drunk driving suspect after St. John refused to give one voluntarily.  St. John challenged the warrant and the test as a violation of Washington's implied consent statute.  FourthAmendment.com also has a link to the case. 
 
Would Overruling Austin and McConnell on Narrow Grounds be "Faux Judicial Restraint"?  That's what Rick Hasen wonders over at Election Law Blog.  In his post, Rick discusses oral arguments in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, focusing in on Justice Scalia's line of argument that the requirement that corporations pay for federal-election related expenditures is not flat-out unconstitutional (as Justice Scalia has repeatedly said in the past) but perhaps merely "overbroad," because it includes non-wealthy corporations.  Hasen, who has "always been a fan of Justice Scalia's opinions," does not agree with this line of reasoning and calls it "faux judicial restraint that obfuscates what the Court is really doing."  He believes that if the Court accepts Scalia's argument (transcript here), and remands to Congress to rewrite the statute more narrowly, any new law would then be struck down as unconstitutional under the First Amendment.

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