Patterico's Pontifications


Where Are the Experts Today? (Part Two)

A quick observation about today’s L.A. Times story on the federal decision yesterday ruling unconstitutional the policy of having students recite the Pledge of Allegiance. The story says:

U.S. District Judge Lawrence K. Karlton said he was bound by the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, which in 2002 ruled that the words “under God,” added by Congress in 1954 during the McCarthy era, rendered the pledge unconstitutional.

Yes, but — nowhere does the story highlight the central problem with yesterday’s ruling: the case that supposedly bound Judge Karlton . . . doesn’t. This point has been made by legal commentators as illustrious as Howard Bashman, Eugene Volokh, William Dyer, and Xrlq, as well as by some less illustrious — such as myself.

I wonder why did the paper did not consult its stable of legal experts to say what they thought about this issue — or if they did, why they didn’t tell us what the experts said. Any reputable scholar (as opposed to a hack like Erwin Chemerinsky) would certainly agree that the judge wrongly concluded that he was bound by the reversed panel decision.

Is there some reason the L.A. Times doesn’t want its readers to know that?

P.S. There is precedent for the paper’s failure to report the opinions of independent experts, when those opinions would undoubtedly favor the conservative position. Read this post (about the disgusting NARAL ad against John Roberts) for an example.

2 Responses to “Where Are the Experts Today? (Part Two)”

  1. How come the notion of “super-duper-splendiforous precendent” doesn’t apply in Establishment Clause cases?

    Christopher Cross (cd5e1f)

  2. […] the Pledge of Allegiance unconstitutional — a decision that legal experts across the land derided as absurd. Or that Thelton Henderson is the judge who blocked Proposition 209, California’s […]

    Patterico’s Pontifications » L.A. Times: Judges Say California May Have to Reduce the Prison Population by Up to 57,000 Prison Inmates . . . But We at the L.A. Times Can’t Seem to Remember Who Appointed These Judges (e4ab32)

Powered by WordPress.

Page loaded in: 0.2436 secs.