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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Bras, boxers and news briefs

Ted Cruz actually did a good thing

A Feb. 11 article by Mother Jones’ David Corn accuses Sen. Ted Cruz of being a hypocrite for advocating as an attorney for $50 million awards on behalf of clients, while simultaneously running a campaign in which he argued that, as a matter of policy, those awards should be legally limited; in Texas, the tort reform law that Cruz supported capped punitive damages at $750,000.

Corn seems to ignore the fact that it’s possible and even necessary for lawyers to make legal arguments in court that contradict their personal politics. The classic example is John Adams, adamant revolutionary and U.S. president, agreeing to be the defense attorney for the British troops implicated in the Boston Massacre.

In a world where extremely qualified judicial nominees are rejected because they once served as defense attorney for an unpopular client, it bears repeating that for attorneys, the professional ethics of ensuring a person has adequate counsel should supersede the ethics of personal belief.

The War in Iraq, Part III

President Barack Obama has asked Congress to pass a bill authorizing the use of force against ISIS “or associated persons or forces.” The bill wouldn’t authorize “enduring offensive ground combat operations,” but it would make the ongoing air strikes in Iraq and Syria semi-legal.

The U.S. hasn’t declared war since World War II. The power to declare war is enumerated as a congressional power in the Constitution, but a series of events over the past century has made Congress progressively more unwilling to use that power and the president progressively more willing to argue that his status as commander in chief allows him to circumvent Congress. Believe it or not, this actually makes a belated Authorization for Use of Military Force something like a compromise.

Whatever they want to call it, at least our government will now be holding a public debate about ISIS and our military’s role in the fight.

Call in the National Guard

Alabama’s constitutional amendment against same-sex marriage was overturned over a month ago, and the stay on the ruling expired on Feb. 9. After the Supreme Court rejected Alabama’s bid to extend the stay, Alabama’s Chief Justice Roy Moore, who was previously removed from the bench for disobeying another federal order, sent a memo to probate judges in all 67 Alabama counties ordering them not to issue marriage licenses in accordance with the ruling.

As a result, Alabama’s same-sex couples can only marry in nine counties at this time. Alabama has a historically bad understanding of the Supremacy Clause, but at least in this case, there’s retribution in sight.

According to Justice Clarence Thomas, the U.S. Supreme Court’s unwillingness to intervene in Alabama right now is indicative of their intent to legalize same-sex marriage nationally before June.

— Compiled by Jacquelyn Oesterblad 

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