After Governor Rell nominated Judge Barry Schaller to the Supreme Court to replace Justice Borden (Courant opinion piece here), she nominated Judge John Downey to replace him on the Appellate Court. Judge Downey has not been popular and has some problems. Aside from his endorsement of Throm Sturmond, he asked if a man killed in an accident was here in the US legally – after hearing his name.
Attorney Brenden Leydon, representing the man’s estate, told Downey he believed so and stressed that issue had not been raised by anyone involved in the case.
“Well, it might be an issue in Judge Downey’s courtroom,” Downey stated on Sept. 11, 2006. He went on to say, “I presume that he was duly authorized [to sue] as a person here having the appropriate documentation, because I think citizens and people here validly have a right to use the court system and those who are here illegally do not.”
But the courts disagree with the judge’s opinion, which is guaranteed to prompt inquiries at his confirmation hearing before the legislature’s Judiciary Committee on Tuesday. Sen. Andrew McDonald, D-Stamford, who co-chairs the committee, said Downey’s statement was “alarming.”
“The quote contained in the transcript is a jarring proposition for a judge to make and certainly raises substantial questions about Judge Downey’s understanding of the law in Connecticut,” said McDonald, who is a lawyer. “The issue of whether someone is in this state legally has little or no bearing on a civil action, particularly in this case, where the person had died and it was their estate bringing the action.”
Indeed. Peter at Undercurrents has more.
Today’s Courant has this powerful piece by Richard Rapaport about the zero tolerance and three-strike frenzy whipping through Connecticut.
Welcome to ZT Connecticut. “ZT,” if you don’t know, stands for zero tolerance. It is a philosophy and mindset invoked to justify actions ranging from the expulsion of students for bringing alcohol-based mouthwash to school, to campaigns to pass “three strikes” laws in response to last month’s heinous murders in Cheshire.
Culled from the engineering lexicon, the slogan “zero tolerance” was trotted out in 1973 as Watergate’s noose tightened and Nixon Justice Department officials needed a tough-sounding anti-crime slogan. In the ’80s, the Navy adopted ZT to add rhetorical muscle to a purge of seagoing potheads.
From there, ZT entered civilian drug enforcement and then locked its tentacles around the justice system in the guise of “zero tolerance for crime.”
This same ZT sub-species has been roused from slumber this summer in Connecticut to induce normally even-keeled citizens to jump on the “three strikes” bandwagon, and to create a platform for those who see no shame in advancing their own social agenda in the face of the tragedy in Cheshire.
So I did a simple search for three strikes laws on Google and found the following:
After years of being inundated with commercials and friends promising me the golden civilization, I bit the bullet and bought an iPod.
It’s okay. Someone want to tell me what makes it so great?
I hate Apple, btw. Their stupid gimmicks and tactics ended up costing me $60 more than I wanted to (or should have to) pay. Which lead me to buy the 30GB version instead of the 80GB version (which I totally was going to).
I shouldn’t have to pay extra for a scratch-resistant case or a freakin wall-outlet charger!
And as much as I love U2, I’m not paying an extra $30 for a U2 version. C’mon.
Anyway. At least I’m listening to music again in forever.