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Joe Patrice

Joe Patrice is an Editor at Above the Law. For over a decade, he practiced as a litigator at...

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Kathryn Rubino is a member of the editorial staff at Above the Law. She has a degree in journalism...

Episode Notes

As law schools return, one student gets a stern warning about a COVID kegger, law firms get a new ranking, and an unqualified judge issues the sort of baseless decision that landed him on the bench in the first place. A rundown of the week that was in legal news.

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Transcript

Thinking Like A Lawyer

Ain’t No Party Like A COVID Party

08/19/2020

 

[Music]

 

Intro: Welcome to Thinking Like A Lawyer with your hosts Elie Mystal and Joe Patrice talking about legal news and pop culture all while thinking like a lawyer here on Legal Talk Network.

 

Joe Patrice: Hello, welcome to another edition of Thinking Like A Lawyer. I’m Joe Patrice from Above The Law. I am joined as usual by my co-editor, Kathryn Rubino, who is here and we are ready to run down as per not — I would say usual, but we’ve been playing around with formats a lot lately.

 

Kathryn Rubino: Sure.

 

Joe Patrice: So as per usual, if you —

 

Kathryn Rubino: Going for work.

 

Joe Patrice: — listened to the show a few months ago and then stopped our rundown of the news of the week basically. Big legal stories, both ones that we covered in Above The Law and elsewhere in a very ESPN-style format. We’re just going to go —

 

Kathryn Rubino: Non-copyrighted styles, yes.

 

Joe Patrice: Yes. Yeah, the discussion —

 

Kathryn Rubino: Discussion, a round table.

 

Joe Patrice: A timed discussion, you won’t be able to see the like rundown clock next to us, but that’s what we’re going to do.

 

Kathryn Rubino: The question is, whether or not there are sound effects, really.

 

Joe Patrice: Well, you know, that’s one of those things. We were just actually a little delayed in our recording because we were having some technical difficulties getting it set up. And one of the unfortunate casualties of this new sound system is, that I no longer have access to my fund soundboard, so that we can be as morning zoo style as we could. So we’re not —

 

Kathryn Rubino: We should just get like one of those hand-held just buzzer, like — or maybe like — do you have like the game taboo, like —

 

Joe Patrice: Yeah, yeah, I think I do. Yeah. But it’s not even that, like I really always wanted to be able to play with many more of them, very like hack DJ style, where it’s like honk honk or whatever.

 

Kathryn Rubino: I just want to be clear, you used the word hack not me.

 

Joe Patrice: Yeah. Well, I didn’t — well, I mean, I’m doing it ironically.

 

Kathryn Rubino: Sure.

 

Joe Patrice: I lived in Brooklyn. I understand how to do things ironically.

 

Kathryn Rubino: Is that how that works?

 

Joe Patrice: Yeah.

 

Kathryn Rubino: It’s pretty sure it wasn’t.

 

Joe Patrice: Whatever, Staten Island. Listen —

 

Kathryn Rubino: That’s in Portland, I think then —

 

Joe Patrice: So what are we — we should get going because we’ve got a jam-packed show. So what are we talking about first?

 

Kathryn Rubino: Oh, I remember.

 

Joe Patrice: I’m glad that you prepared for this show as much as I expect.

 

Kathryn Rubino: I mean, listen, I did my research and then I didn’t bring any notes with me to the recording because, you know I like to freeball it, see what happens.  Be able to turn on the dime and not be bound to my notes.

 

Joe Patrice: I mean, I sound like I’m complaining. But I mean, our good friend, Elie never even did that. So this is —

 

Kathryn Rubino: Listen, okay.  Story number one.  Ain’t No party like A COVID Party because a COVID party don’t stop.

 

Joe Patrice: COVID parties, are these things happening?

 

Kathryn Rubino: Well, you know, okay. It’s not the sort of situation where law school students are trying to catch the disease. But it is the situation that at Notre Dame, they’re having in-person classes, or at least in some form, and so folks there on campus. And a 1L at Notre Dame decided that she really wanted to meet new folks and meet her classmates and whatnot.  Which is reasonable in non-pandemic times, but there is in fact a pandemic. And she put a message on the incoming class Facebook page and said, “Do whatever you’re comfortable with, but we will be wearing masks.”

 

Joe Patrice: That’s true. She later did correct herself and say that what she meant by that was that people will have them off while drinking, so like it won’t —

 

Kathryn Rubino: Sure, eating and drinking.

 

Joe Patrice: It won’t be constant masks and that’s what she was trying to convey, but this was not taken well by the administration.

 

Kathryn Rubino: No, it was not. The dean sent around an email encouraging folks not to host parties during a pandemic, which again seems eminently reasonable to me.  Explaining that this is not what they had in mind, that there are risks that they made to shut down all in-person stuff it there is an outbreak. So reminding them that if contract tracing determines that your part was the cause of massive outbreak, that that is not a good thing for the future of your reputation and your career. And you’re about to start a new profession and be careful.

 

Joe Patrice: Obviously, I think that hosting parties at this point is probably ill-advised. And I think that it is always important tot ell students to begin considering themselves professionals and to begin acting professional. But at the same time, part of that transition to being profession is not being scolded like a child. And so I was — and not that I — I think the dean is absolutely right in the message being conveyed here, but invoking your reputation — your reputation will not be enhanced, as the exact term in there.

 

(00:05:07)

 

Kathryn Rubino: Sure.

 

Joe Patrice: I just feel like these — and we’re seeing it a lot with bar exams situations too, where people are making these veiled or explicit threats to character and fitness, reputation, whatever. I worry that that’s unacceptable as part of the growth of students. They should be professional, but like, they can’t really be — I don’t know. It rubbed me a little bit the wrong way.

 

Kathryn Rubino: I think that you’re looking at this from the lens of I think our conversation last week about threatening character and fitness.

 

Joe Patrice: Yeah.

 

Kathryn Rubino: And not in sort of in isolation. Because the truth of the matter is, that you say, “Oh, these people should not be scolded like children.” Well, they should act like selfish children either, right? And hosting — wanting to host a BYOB party for your 1L classmates is not super — it’s not a great idea. It’s a terrible idea. And if it takes an adult or I mean, they’re all adults in the situation. It would take somebody in a position of authority reminding you that this is terrible idea. Which by the way, for the record, it was in fact called off and the student involved is working with the administration to come up with some more socially distance/online ways to meet her classmates, which is obviously appropriate. But I mean, they acted inappropriately by trying to host this party.

 

Joe Patrice: Yeah, absolutely. That’s really my issue. I think that the email that is, “Don’t host this party, it could screw up the entire campus. It is unsafe, you shouldn’t do it because it is not safe.” All of these statements totally make sense. I feel like when people invoke, “This will hurt your professional reputation.” That’s the trigger line for me, where it ceases to be, “Hey, I’m telling you. This is a bad idea, don’t do it.” And becomes something that is more — I don’t know. More like a scolding — I mean, it’s all scolding but more — I just think that’s such a part of somebody’s professional livelihood and stuff like that, that it’s just an inappropriate thing to go to.

 

Kathryn Rubino: I mean, I disagree with you. I think a couple of things. First of all, I think that the dean is not saying that I’m going to write a recommendation to character and fitness that you not be —

 

Joe Patrice: Which that would obviously be worst.

 

Kathryn Rubino: Right. This is saying that you have to be aware that this is your reputation on the line. And the truth is, character and fitness aborts have held smaller infractions or lapses in judgment as problematic. Something like a speeding ticket could come back to bother you. It could be using marijuana or something that I would consider far less dangerous than hosting a party during a pandemic has come back to kind of haunt the character and fitness of various candidates across the country. It is something that is absolutely appropriate to talk about and to remind students of. And the truth is, who knows what the threshold is and what the line is that convinced folks not to have this party. Maybe it was being like, “Oh gosh, this is the rest of my life. This is more important than that.” I feel like — we’re literally in the middle of the pandemic, that is okay. That is appropriate.

 

Joe Patrice: I completely agree with canceling and I think that all of the good reasons for doing it are things that need to be conveyed. I feel like it’s pulling out magic words that are a little too much.

 

Kathryn Rubino: See, I think that again, I really think that your irritation at this is much more about what the NCBE did that we talked about last time about threatening character and fitness.

 

Joe Patrice: Certainly, yeah.

 

Kathryn Rubino: For a quick reminder. NCBE threatens character and fitness for students who complains about taking an exam during a pandemic. And I think that in both of those instances, looking to see who has the best public health policy winds up on different sides.  In the NCBE example, right, it’s the students who are complaining about having to take a bar exam in-person in potential super spreader conditions, right? And in the Notre Dame situation, right, it’s the dean who’s saying like, “Don’t hold these parties.” And I think that in both of them, the difference between why one unveiled threat and one, just reminder. Whatever those are, I think the difference is there, is that who is on the right side of public health. As we’ve talked about during the pandemic, like what happens in terms of public health is absolutely a factor in determining what actions are appropriate. And I think that the distinction there is what causes me to have a different opinion of those two situations.

 

Joe Patrice: Yeah, I know.

 

Kathryn Rubino: Public health has to be our number one priority. It’s not.

 

Joe Patrice: That, I agree with. You know who else is having a problem with public health? The president of Notre Dame who had to issue a statement the other day, explaining that he’s been stopping and taking photos, like jumping in and hugging people.

 

Kathryn Rubino: Yeah. He takes some photos where no one was wearing masks.

 

Joe Patrice: Yeah. So now he’s had to apologize.

 

(00:10:02)

 

Kathryn Rubino: Listen, that’s the whole point, right? And I think that puts the position that the law school dean in more of a precarious position. I mean, like, oh yeah. And the president, not great at this, but we have to really remember. So if it takes threatening or reminding folks of their professional responsibilities, so be it.

 

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Kathryn Rubino: I know this is no something that we planned to talk about, but it kind of builds off of our question about what’s the right thing to do in terms of public health.

 

Joe Patrice: I’m glad that we did all that time planning then. Go on.

 

Kathryn Rubino: I mean, I can stop.

 

Joe Patrice: No, no. Go for it.

 

Kathryn Rubino: There’s a judge in Philadelphia who refuses to wear a mask in his courtroom, at least reportedly and there’s a letter, a complaint that was filed to the administration of the family court, it’s a family court judge, because he refuses to do that. In addition, it has ordered lawyers who have at various points appeared before him to remove their own masks.  There have been instances in this courtroom where witnesses have refused to testify because they wouldn’t want to be in a closed room with somebody not wearing a mask. I mean, this is the kind of thing that just drives me absolutely batty. Like there’s no reason for anyone to not be wearing a mask, particularly if you’re in a closed courtroom. I mean, question whether or not in-person is even fully necessary at this point. But even assuming that there is some value to in-person court hearings, certainly, wearing a mask doesn’t seem difficult. We know for a fact that wearing — when you’re indoors in particular, wearing a mask is your best defense. Why are we not doing these things?

 

Joe Patrice: Well, at least this is a situation where he’s not wearing it as opposed to telling everybody that they can’t, like the sheriff in Florida who has banned anyone from wearing mask in the facilities.

 

Kathryn Rubino: Sure, that’s worse. Okay. But again, he’s telling lawyers who are appearing before him that they have to —

 

Joe Patrice: I mean, lawyers go to jails to meet people.

 

Kathryn Rubino: That’s true.

 

Joe Patrice: It’s kind of a thing.

 

Kathryn Rubino: I just don’t understand. Like I can’t believe — and I know that this has been a big part of this year, is this sort of battle over masks, but it continues to be infuriating.  It continues to — and the legal profession is far from dealing with this kind of idiocy.

 

Joe Patrice: Yeah.

 

Kathryn Rubino: Sorry.  I try to get it off my chest. It’s really irritating.

 

Joe Patrice: No, I agree. What do we want to — given that, what do we want to discuss next? There’s another ranking out. Are you excited about ranking law firms? I know we are. That is not something that we’re actually super excited about, but we’re going to talk about them anyway.

 

Kathryn Rubino: Well, here’s a thing. I participate in ranking mania as much as probably anyone else. I do a daily feature, trivia question of the day, legal trivia question of the day that is built around plenty of various — I milk those ranking for all of the data points that they provide. I think I’m a bit of a mixed bag when it comes to rankings. What’s your take on them?

 

Joe Patrice: I think rankings have some value. I think that there are situations like our Above The Law law school rankings that are super valuable.

 

Kathryn Rubino: Sure.

 

Joe Patrice: I just feel like any one field probably needs one set of rankings or one methodology and not a million.

 

Kathryn Rubino: I mean, I’m not sure that that’s true, right? I think part of the issues, the reason why there is an Above The Law law school ranking is because the dominant law school ranking, US news and report we believe is fundamentally flawed, because it cares more about the inputs than the outputs.

 

Joe Patrice: But I view that as both of us having one ranking. Like they have a ranking and we have a ranking. This is a situation where the ALM family of publications have a million and one different ranking — so there’s the AM Law 200, you know that one. What about the A List of firms? That’s also them doing a different thing. This time, it’s revenue per lawyer, and pro bono, and associate satisfaction.

 

Kathryn Rubino: And diversity.

 

Joe Patrice: And some diversity. And then they kind of double weight the pro bono part, and then — and the revenue per lawyer part and whatever. So, it turns out that different firms are on top a little bit.

 

Kathryn Rubino: Sure.

 

Joe Patrice: I feel like at some point this just becomes ranking for ranking sake.

 

Kathryn Rubino: Sure. But I mean, I do think that having a place to put things like associate satisfaction and making that a part of a ranking is probably, there is value to that. I think it’s interesting and there is — it’s also interesting in terms of lateral and law students who are contemplating what law firms to go to. When you’re in law school and you’re trying to put together your ranking of various firms that you want to interview with and potentially work out as 2L summer, there’s a lot of information.

 

(00:15:03)

 

There’s a lot coming at you and being able to actually have hard numbers that say, “People seem happy here.”  Not just, “Oh, I had a good interview with a person that a person that I really liked” and then “Oh, those seem like my kind of people, and then you get there and the person is gone.” I mean, I think that like having these sorts of hard numbers really only increases the transparency overall as the profession. I think that that’s something I definitely believe very strongly in that sort of the more information we have, the better, particularly for those law students and laterals.

 

Joe Patrice: Well, two things.  One, I’m not saying that it’s not good to have a list of — a list of, here’s a survey results of attorney satisfaction, here’s a survey list results of pro bono commitment. But creating a methodology that like weighs one over another in some way to create some weird overall, this is the A List seem suspect to me. I’d also challenge the argument that what matters is not that you had a meeting with somebody that you like. Ultimately, law is at this level, at the big level is all soul crushing in its on way.

 

Kathryn Rubino: Yes.

 

Joe Patrice: And I feel as though if you spend a lot of times, saying, “Oh, this firm has exactly the pro bono commitment I want,” you’re going to find out real quick that you don’t really interact with all those sorts of things. You’re going to end up doing hours and hours of the same kind of work. And so what really matters is, do you feel that the people you’re working with are folks you like and that are good mentors.

 

Kathryn Rubino: I think that there’s definitely that and definitely the ability to connect with the folks that you’re working with has the ability to make an absolutely miserable soul, crushing big law experience into a slightly less awful, big law experience and that is important. The differences between those two I think are monumental. But I’m not sure that interviewing is what gets you there or lets you know whether or not those people will be there, right? I tink that, oftentimes, even if you’re interviewing with an associate, oftentimes that person may not even be there or maybe in a different group than you wind up working for. And those aren’t the people you are bonding with anyway.

 

Joe Patrice: Yeah. So we will just say, congratulations to Munger, Tolles, which is apparently the A plus of the A List, the number one.

 

Kathryn Rubino: There is that.

 

Joe Patrice: And you know, that’s fine. If I had my sound effect meter, I would have gone through the whole top 10 and done it like Letterman style, although a non-copyrightable version of that.

 

Kathryn Rubino: Sure.

 

Joe Patrice: Not a trademarkable version I guess I should say. Anywho —

 

Kathryn Rubino: Who is was the IP lawyer.

 

Joe Patrice: Yeah. Anyway, you wanted to discuss some court issues in this bed of (00:17:41).

 

Kathryn Rubino: Yeah. It seems like the Supreme Court, there’s been a couple of articles written recently about the increase of so-called shadow docket in the Supreme Court. That because there is a five-judge majority, that a lot of cases are being dealt with without actually having full hearings or any of that. And it seems like it’s just going to be even more of them in the future, regardless of kind of who wins the next presidential election.

 

Joe Patrice: Yeah. So we all kind of gear up for the end of the term that usually comes in June this year, more like July. And we gear up for that and that’s where the last big cases get decided or so you think. The last high-profile cases that have been argued on the merits docket get handled there. But there is still matters in front of the court that can get dealt with on the DL sort of. And these have been called the shadow docket by law professor, and I think it’s a fair argument. And these include things like stays, that can have real impact. You can for instance have a situation where one state says, “Oh” — and this is a very COVID-related example. One state says, “We don’t normally allow early voting, but given that everyone could die, we’ve decided to allow early voting.” And somebody sues and it goes up the courts. And the Supreme Court, without hearing any argument and limited attorney input at all can just issue a one-sentence ruling saying, “We’ve decided we’re not going to touch this right now, so it stays as it is until after the election and when we get to it.” Which as a functional matter, kills the arguments, so it has real impacts.

 

Today, for the first time, there was a good turn. Rhode Island wants to make a change that allows people to vote by absentee without requiring two witnesses and a notary. And that survived, that will be allowed to go into effect, which is good. That said, it was still a 6-3 decision. Three justices went ahead and said that, “No, we don’t understand why we would let people vote by absentee without a notary.

 

Kathryn Rubino: Yeah. And the truth is, a lot of this COVID-based stuff is being dealt with on this docket, where there is no argument, there’s no decision and it’s just a straight up and down vote.

 

(00:20:04)

 

This one, that Rhode Island case is actually somewhat unique in the sense that their restriction was kind of overturned, the more restrictive —

 

Joe Patrice: And this plays into the argument that — there are these people who pretend that Justice Roberts is some sort of swing (00:20:20) and he’s not. But what the chief justice does is, will occasionally make institutional decisions to make the court look less political because he has an institutional interest to doing that.

 

Kathryn Rubino: Sure.

 

Joe Patrice: And that’s why when people think about the Supreme Court, they think of these five or four cases. But those are really somewhat the minority cases there. There are — a lot more cases are your 9-0.  Obviously, this is true sort of situation. On that note, I’m willing to say, so this term, there were 12 decisions in the main merits term that we all know that were 5-4. So just 12. From what I can see, 11 so far. Since the court basically stopped doing merits thing, there’s been 11 of these shadow docket things that have been 5-4. This is the burial ground where they’re dumping all the —

 

Kathryn Rubino: The actually controversial stuff.

 

Joe Patrice: Actually, controversial stuff so that nobody pays attention to it, which is very problematic.

 

Kathryn Rubino: And the Supreme Court, there was recently a Gallup poll that said that the Supreme Court is the most popular it’s been since Kagan was put on the court, so in a real long time. I think that something like maybe 53%, 58% of people have a good opinion of the Supreme Court right now. But that’s part of the reason why, right? It’s because Robert is playing a candy game that allows the court to — and part of that Gallup poll, some of the follow-up questioning revealed that it was revealed that it was that kind of everyone could point to a victory.

 

Joe Patrice: Yeah.

 

Kathryn Rubino: But we’ve got this case, you’ve got that case, okay. So if no one is really happy, everyone thinks that the court is doing what they’re supposed to being doing.  Which I mean, it’s problematic for lots of other reasons. But you’re right, that this is sort of shadow docket is allowing the court to play a game with public opinion.

 

Joe Patrice: I believe and there’s a great Steve Laddick article about this.  I believe if I’m recalling that article correctly, there’s something like. “The Trump administration has had more of these kinds of decisions than the Bush and Obama administrations added together.”  It’s kind of that insanity that in four years, we’ve had what took 16.

 

Kathryn Rubino: And in fact, we’re just kind of getting to the point where we’re talking about this after four years is — it’s a lot.

 

Joe Patrice: Speaking of merits decisions.  One of the big merit’s decisions at the end of the term was June Medical, which was an abortion rights decision, in which the chief justice sided with the majority. This was one of those cases that said, People providing abortions have to have hospital admitting privileges, which hospitals don’t give those to abortion providers, because why would they? Because they don’t need to. And hence, it’s a de facto way to ban abortion by putting this requirement on them. So it was a 5-4 decision, but the chief justice’s opinion — so the original decision was a 5-4 with Justice Kennedy on top and the chief on the bottom. And this time around, the chief joined the top but wrote separately and said, “I’m just doing this because the last case was — it’s the same as the last case, so I’m no changing it but I still disagree with it.”

 

Kathryn Rubino: Right.

 

Joe Patrice: So what’s going on with that?

 

Kathryn Rubino: So the 8th Circuit saw that decision and has reread the court’s concurrence, Justice Roberts’ concurrence as the controlling majority since he was the fifth vote, and said that that is what they have to look at all future abortion regulations under.  Which functionally takes our standard back under Casey. Planned Parenthood versus Casey, which was that, they didn’t have — the difference was that whether or not there had to be any benefit to the maternal health in order for an abortion regulation to continue. And in this case, the 8th Circuit said, “Well, that standard no longer exists in the majority, so we are going to uphold.”

 

So they actually overturned the District Court who had issued a stay against the implementation of a bunch of regulations, including both partners had to consent to the disposition of the remains, including cases of rape and incest.  If the one partner was an adult and the other person wasn’t, then the adult was the only — the one who is like legally an adult is the only one who had any ability to decide how the remains of the fetus were dealt with. And that doesn’t sound like a thing, but it is when you realize, that means it gets rid of all medical abortions, right? Because medical abortions are something that happens at home.  You take a pill, you go home and it happens in your house, so the medical provider does not have an ability to say what happened to those fetal remains.  So unless both partners are in agreement, it means that you cannot have a medical abortion, right? So that was just one of their four different restrictions that were part of this thing, and they’re about to go in effect.

 

(00:25:05)

 

Joe Patrice: The charitable read of the 8th Circuit which — I mean, this is a panel that had Judge Steven Grasz on it, who was famously one of the multiple Trump appointees who was rated absolutely not qualified by the ABA but still got his job. So this unqualified judge brings us this decision. But the charitable read is that, in whole women’s health, there was a 5-4 majority that said X. In this case there is a 5-4 majority, but since the chief only joined to a certain extent and he wrote this concurrence, that that means that the only thing that everyone agreed on was this concurrence. And that the other four are saying, since he didn’t’ fully agree doesn’t get the full vote. That’s the argument. The problem with this is, his concurrence isn’t really setting forth new law. His concurrence is, I agree with the part where other four said this is the same as whole women’s health. Which means, that’s the president that should control.

 

Kathryn Rubino: Right. It should not be reverted back to Planned Parenthood v. Casey.

 

Joe Patrice: It’s like, you don’t get to say, “I agree with the president, but I wish the president wasn’t there” and then say, “Oh.”  One person says he wishes that wasn’t president so it changes. To the extent, the most limited, if the argument is that you’re supposed to go and this is the argument they’re making that the — to interpret split decisions, where there’s a plurality like that, you have to go with the narrowest issue of the five agree on.  Then the thing that all the five agreed on was, this was decided on whole women’s health.

 

Kathryn Rubino: Yes.

 

Joe Patrice: So it was really, really questionable.

 

Kathryn Rubino: It’s really problematic decision and sort of undermines the whole Gallup poll that says that, “Courts are held in the best of scene that they have in years.”  I mean, maybe they are because people aren’t understanding really what’s going on. But it seems to me pretty clear that there is a real problem with the credibility of the federal judiciary that’s only going to get worse as we get more, and more decisions from these ABA unranked, unqualified federal judges.

 

Joe Patrice: And we’re coming quickly to the end, but I will note that if you thought that that was an issue today or yesterday actually as we’re recording this, the new nominee was put up for a district courtship who has been out of law school for eight years.

 

Kathryn Rubino: That doesn’t seem like a lot of time.

 

Joe Patrice: And she didn’t practice all those. For four of those years, she’s been clerking.

 

Kathryn Rubino: Including?

 

Joe Patrice: Including — she was Thomas’ clerk the term before this.

 

Kathryn Rubino: That seems so fundamentally gut check wrong that it’s —

 

Joe Patrice: It goes —

 

Kathryn Rubino: I refuse to no longer be shocked.  I’m going to continue to —

 

Joe Patrice: You refuse to no longer.

 

Kathryn Rubino: Right.

 

Joe Patrice: So you agree to always be shocked, okay.

 

Kathryn Rubino: Not always be shocked, but I’m going to continue to be shocked, even though theoretically, you see so many shocking things, you kind of get numb to it, whatever. I’m going to continue to be shocked as much as I can, because these things shouldn’t go by without shocking outrage.

 

Joe Patrice: This woman, her name is Mazzell, not spelled this way, but I have dubbed her the not so magnificent Mrs. Mazzell. She does not have a long track record for anyone to go on. I’m not sure what the Senate Judiciary Committee would even look at, other than maybe her Torts exam, one all year. I think that’s the most recent thing you can point to.

 

Kathryn Rubino: And frankly, the reason why you get a bunch of clerkships is your 1L grade. So perhaps more relevant.

 

Joe Patrice: The one shining light on this is, it does — Professor Carl Tobias of Richmond Law, who’s an expert on judicial nominations told me that given the backlog right now of judicial nominees, he says he is skeptical that the Senate would even be able to get to her nomination before the election is over at least and before inauguration day at worse.  So he thinks it may not be in the cards, but we’ll see.

 

Kathryn Rubino: That certainly assumes a democratic victory, which I would like to.

 

Joe Patrice: Right. In either place.

 

Kathryn Rubino: But the postal services is about to go under.

 

Joe Patrice: In either place though, a democratic victory either at the White House or in the Senate because obviously, the Senate would scuttle this as well.  Part of me feels bad about — I feel bad for her because she’s now going to get —

 

Kathryn Rubino: In 10, 15 years, she very well might have been qualified.

 

Joe Patrice: Yeah. But she’s not now, so she’s going to get stuck with this tag and I just think that’s somewhat unfair.  Anyway, here we are.  And with all of that, we’d like to thank you all for listening.  And you should be subscribed and giving us reviews and starts and write some things so that it helps people know that we are out.  We’d like to thank Paper Software for sponsoring the episode with Contract Tools.  Check that out.  You should be reading Above The Law daily as I’m sure you all do. I’m at @josephpatrice on Twitter. She is @kathryn1. That’s the Arabic numeral 1.

 

(00:30:06)

 

You’re tracking that again.

 

Kathryn Rubino: Yeah, it has every couple of year.

 

Joe Patrice: It’s like every couple of years that somebody does the poll, should we teach Arabic numerals and everyone says, “No.” Yeah.

 

Kathryn Rubino: No. I’m like —

 

Joe Patrice: Yeah. Anyway, you should be listening to our other shows. We have a the ATL COVID Cast, our special report series on COVID and in the impact on the legal profession.  The Jabot, which Kathryn’s show about diversity issues in big law firms.  You should check out the other shows at Legal Talk Network.  If you have a hankering for some legal tech conversation, you can jump in on the LegalTech weekly roundup, the Bob Ambrogi host that I’m a panelist on.  And I think that’s all the various spaces where you can catch up with us at least right now.  So with that, we’ll sign off.

 

Kathryn Rubino: Bye.

 

[Music]

 

Outro: If you’d like more information about what you’ve heard today, please visit legaltalknetwork.com. You can also find us at abovethelaw.com, atlredline.com, iTunes, RSS, Twitter, and Facebook.

 

The views expressed by the participants of this program are their own and do not represent the views of, nor are they endorsed by Legal Talk Network, its officers, directors, employees, agents, representatives, shareholders and subsidiaries. None of the content should be considered legal advice. As always, consult a lawyer.

 

[Music]

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Episode Details
Published: August 18, 2020
Podcast: Thinking Like a Lawyer - Above the Law
Category: COVID-19 , Law School , Legal News
Podcast
Thinking Like a Lawyer - Above the Law
Thinking Like a Lawyer - Above the Law

Above the Law's Elie Mystal and Joe Patrice examine everyday topics through the prism of a legal framework.

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