Justiceline: February 7, 2013

Welcome to Justiceline, ThinkProgress Justice’s morning round-up of the latest legal news and developments. Remember to follow us on Twitter at @TPJustice

  • During federal appeals court arguments on a challenge to the National Defense Authorization Act’s detention provisions by journalists and activists, an attorney for the plaintiffs focused his remarks on lessons learned from the detention during World War II of Fred Korematsu and other Japanese Americans as reason to be wary of a vaguely defined detention power.
  • A study by the policymaking arm for Congress found that more than 650 U.S. recess appointments by every president from Reagan to Obama would be invalidated by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit’s decision finding unconstitutional President Obama’s appointments to the National Labor Relations Board. Among those whose appointments would have been void are President Bush’s appointment of Alan Greenspan to chair the Federal Reserve Board and Lawrence Eagleburger as secretary of state.
  • U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor expressed hesitation to bringing cameras into the courtroom during a Manhattan stop on her book tour. “I think the process can be more misleading than helpful,” she said, noting that oral argument is the time for judges to play devil’s advocate.
  • New York’s chief judge yesterday blasted the state’s criteria for bail determinations, saying the standard used by judges both discriminates against the poor and those accused of low-level crimes, as well as allows those potentially most dangerous criminals to return to do harm pending trial. New York is one of four states, he said, that bases its bail determinations on whether the person will return for court, and not on risks to public safety.
  • As police stops have begun to go down in New York City from their alarming 2011 high, so, too, has the rate of homicides, disproving the reasoning that one prevents the other, Jim Dwyer points out in a column.