judge

Judge Barrett’s Record: Siding With Businesses Over Workers

With the opening statements and the grandstanding now over, today the nomination hearings for Judge Amy Coney Barrett to replace the late Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the Supreme Court begin in earnest, as members of the Senate Judiciary Committee launch into their questioning. Supreme Court confirmation hearings have become a high-level version of dodgeball, where nominees work tirelessly to evince no opinion on any legal matter whatsoever, using the excuse that the topic might come up before the Court in the future, and the nominee wouldn’t want to prejudge any decision.

In this case, both Barrett’s record and the entire process can be prejudged. Though she only has three years on the federal bench, Barrett has nearly two decades’ worth of law review writing from her time as a professor at Notre Dame. Everyone knows she has been installed to deliver victories on long-sought, ideologically conservative priorities, from eliminating the right to choose an abortion to the overturning of a century of labor law jurisprudence. And everyone knows conservative senators will vote in lockstep to get Barrett on the Court to commence this work. The only drama lies in whether enough of them are actually available to complete the task before the general election.

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Still, I subscribe to the school of thought that what a judicial nominee believes actually matters when confirming them to the highest court in the land. And even Barrett’s short stint as a judge has yielded a number of revealing opinions that all point to a general bias. As the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law puts it in a report released today on the Barrett record, “she is predisposed to side with law enforcement at the expense of defendants’ constitutional rights, and with employers and business interests in disputes with

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Palm Bay to reconsider allowing hundreds of homes next to FAR Chemical after judge voids meeting

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A witness called 911 to report an explosion at a chemical plant in Palm Bay.

Wochit

Back in February, disregarding warnings of danger, the Palm Bay City Council voted 5-0 to rezone land bordering FAR Chemical’s industrial plant for construction of up to 699 homes and 190,000 square feet of commercial space.

On Sept. 8, FAR Chemical was rocked by a series of window-rattling explosions, sparking large fireballs and shutting down U.S. 1 as police and firefighters converged on the scene.

Nine days later, a Brevard County circuit judge invalidated the results of the February City Council meeting, ruling that Palm Bay officials had failed to comply with mandatory notice requirements.

Now, the City Council will re-hear the 22-acre multifamily housing-commercial construction proposal during a special meeting at 6 p.m. Tuesday.

The FAR Chemical blasts originated from an industrial storage area containing 30 to 40 50-gallon barrels of an isopropyl alcohol-based solution, Palm Bay spokeswoman Keely Leggett said. No injuries were reported.

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More: Explosions, smoke from FAR Chemical plant rock Palm Bay

More: FAR Chemical warned Palm Bay officials of hazards months before last week’s explosions

“Nobody ever wants to see an accident happen. But it doesn’t matter how well-prepared you are: Accidents happen,” Joe Beatty, vice president and general manager of FAR Chemical, said Monday.

“I can’t imagine if there were 500 or 600 multifamily home units that close — and if they had already been built? God, it’d just be awful,” Beatty said.

The 22-acre adjacent property at Robert J. Conlan Boulevard and U.S. 1 is owned by MLEF2-1, LLC, a North Miami Beach development company.

The developer’s February 2019 conceptual plan on file at City Hall depicts five future four-story buildings containing 308 housing units with a 10,000-square-foot

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Arizonans in nursing homes and hospitals can vote by video in some circumstances, judge rules

Election officials in Arizona can use videoconferencing to help some voters confined to hospitals, nursing homes or living with severe disabilities cast their ballots, a judge ruled Monday, rejecting calls to declare the new pandemic-era practice illegal.



a group of people standing in front of a sign: People wash their hands by the entrance to Sapphire of Tucson Nursing and Rehab on May 1, 2020.


© David Wallace/The Republic
People wash their hands by the entrance to Sapphire of Tucson Nursing and Rehab on May 1, 2020.

Attorney General Mark Brnovich asked the court to strike down plans adopted by the Maricopa County Recorder’s Office and Arizona Secretary of State’s Office for limited “virtual” voting assistance, arguing that state law does not allow anyone to cast a ballot by video.

Gov. Doug Ducey also opposed the policies, contending that state law requires officials provide such services in person.

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But in a ruling that reflected how unusual this election year is, Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Randall H. Warner found that videoconferencing may be necessary for some voters with very particular circumstances who would otherwise have to choose between protecting themselves from COVID-19 or forgoing their right to participate in the electoral process.

“Federal law does not allow Arizona to impose on a disabled voter the choice between voting and protecting their health,” he wrote.

The judge warned, however, that his ruling “does not mean the County Recorder is free to use video voting whenever he wants or for any voter who asks.”

Still, Fontes declared victory.

“This is a win for accessibility,” the county recorder said in a statement. “We will continue to provide this option to the most vulnerable population of Maricopa County voters when necessary, ensuring compliance with all applicable law.”

A longstanding practice and COVID-19

The legal battle over the practice began in earnest last week but stems from

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Voting by video allowed in some circumstances, Arizona judge rules

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People wash their hands by the entrance to Sapphire of Tucson Nursing and Rehab on May 1, 2020. (Photo: David Wallace/The Republic)

Election officials in Arizona can use videoconferencing to help some voters confined to hospitals, nursing homes or living with severe disabilities cast their ballots, a judge ruled Monday, rejecting calls to declare the new pandemic-era practice illegal.

Attorney General Mark Brnovich asked the court to strike down plans adopted by the Maricopa County Recorder’s Office and Arizona Secretary of State’s Office for limited “virtual” voting assistance, arguing that state law does not allow anyone to cast a ballot by video.

Gov. Doug Ducey also opposed the policies, contending that state law requires officials provide such services in person.

But in a ruling that reflected how unusual this election year is, Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Randall H. Warner found that videoconferencing may be necessary for some voters with very particular circumstances who would otherwise have to choose between protecting themselves from COVID-19 or forgoing their right to participate in the electoral process.

“Federal law does not allow Arizona to impose on a disabled voter the choice between voting and protecting their health,” he wrote.

The judge warned, however, that his ruling “does not mean the County Recorder is free to use video voting whenever he wants or for any voter who asks.”

Still, Fontes declared victory.

“This is a win for accessibility,” the county recorder said in a statement. “We will continue to provide this option to the most vulnerable population of Maricopa County voters when necessary, ensuring compliance with all applicable law.”

A longstanding practice and COVID-19

The legal battle over the practice began in earnest last week but stems from longstanding policies for assisting a small portion of the state’s voters who are physically unable

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The Block judge Darren Palmer issues a SAVAGE assessment on bathrooms

He’s known to speak his mind when critiquing the room reveals on The Block.

And judge Darren Palmer issued a savage assessment of two bathrooms from competing teams on Sunday night’s episode.

The interior design guru found the wall structure of Harry and Tash’s bathroom to be concerning, before admitting to ‘not liking anything’ about Daniel and Jade’s tiling. 

'It's a screw up!' The Block judge Darren Palmer (far left) issued a SAVAGE assessment of Harry and Tash's bathroom - before screwing his nose up at Daniel and Jade's tiling choices (pictured) on Sunday night's episode

‘It’s a screw up!’ The Block judge Darren Palmer (far left) issued a SAVAGE assessment of Harry and Tash’s bathroom – before screwing his nose up at Daniel and Jade’s tiling choices (pictured) on Sunday night’s episode 

Sunday’s episode saw the five teams choosing to style two rooms, one of which had to be a bathroom.  

Harry and Tash’s 1920’s bedroom started off on a positive note with all three judges, however their ensuite was a very different story.  

While Darren, Shaynna Blaze and Neale Whitaker were in awe of the colour palette and basin choice, Darren noticed a structural nightmare in builders having erected a straight frame crooked.

Positive: Harry and Tash's 1920's bedroom (pictured) started off on a positive note with all three judges, however their ensuite was a very different story

Positive: Harry and Tash’s 1920’s bedroom (pictured) started off on a positive note with all three judges, however their ensuite was a very different story 

Structural nightmare: However, with their bathroom, Darren noticed a structural nightmare in builders having erected a straight frame crooked

Structural nightmare: However, with their bathroom, Darren noticed a structural nightmare in builders having erected a straight frame crooked 

Design issues: What resulted was uneven tiling, meaning the entire wall beam would have to be taken out and reinstalled. Pictured: Harry and Tash

Design issues: What resulted was uneven tiling, meaning the entire wall beam would have to be taken out and reinstalled. Pictured: Harry and Tash

What resulted was uneven tiling, meaning the entire wall beam would have to be taken out and reinstalled.  

‘It’s a screw up! It’s sad that an error like that can undo all of this hard work, especially in this stressful environment,’ he said. 

Darren was also vocal when it came to assessing Daniel and Jade’s 1930’s bathroom. 

He was in awe of both kids’

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