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Sometimes, You Forget How Bad They Can Be

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But Ed Whelan of NRO's  Bench Memos reminds us:

2005--A split Ninth Circuit panel, in an opinion by notorious activist judge Stephen Reinhardt, rules in a habeas case (Musladin v. Lamarque) that under clearly established Supreme Court law a defendant on trial for murder was deprived of his right to a fair trial by an impartial jury when the trial judge permitted family members of the victim (or, as Reinhardt insists on referring to him in quotes, the "victim") to wear buttons bearing the deceased's photograph. (The panel will later substitute in a slightly different version of its opinion.)

In 2006, a mere two months after oral argument, the Supreme Court (in Carey v. Musladin) will unanimously reverse the Ninth Circuit.

How far some judges will go to re-invent the Constitution as a cudgel of callousness toward the families of murder victims is mind-bending. 

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