Monday, August 29, 2011

Texas judge slaps down meddling anti-choice lawmakers again – and again

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Judge Sam Sparks
Judge Sam Sparks

Recently, Texas federal district judge Sam Sparks ordered a couple of lawmakers to slag off when they tried to intervene in a federal lawsuit brought on by abortion rights groups who were suing to stop the state’s new “women must have a sonogram 24 hours before undergoing pregnancy termination” law, which the aforementioned lawmakers, themselves, had presented.

Amusingly enough, the duo then filed the exact same motion again, only for Judge Sparks to smack them down once more and pretty much tell them to fuck off in the process (albeit in a more legalistic vernacular):

As stated in its August 9, 2011, Order, the Court will not allow this lawsuit to be used as a vehicle for advancing a political agenda, or as a platform for rhetorical grandstanding. Although the outcome of this case will likely have repercussions outside these proceedings, the resolution of this case will depend solely upon the legal issues presented. The Court’s time is better spent considering the arguments of the parties than addressing the opportunistic petitions of outsiders.

Somehow, though, Sen. Patrick and Rep. Miller just didn’t seem to get it. They filed the same damn motion a third time. And Judge Sparks sent his namesakes ricocheting off the courtroom walls:

BE IT REMEMBERED on this day the Court reviewed the file in the above-styled cause, and specifically the latest in an unfortunately long line of motions for leave to file an amicus brief. Having reviewed the document, the relevant law, and the file as a whole, the Court now enters the following opinion and order DENYING the motions:

The Court has already turned down two extremely tempting offers to transform this case from a boring old federal lawsuit into an exciting, politically charged media circus. As any competent attorney could have predicted, the Court declines the latest invitation as well.

However, the Court is forced to conclude that Allen E. Parker, Jr., the attorney whose signature appears on this motion, is anything but competent. A competent attorney would not have filed this motion in the first place; if he did, he certainly would not have attached exhibits that are both highly prejudicial and legally irrelevant; and if he foolishly did both things, he surely would not be so prejudicial as to file such exhibits unsealed. A competent attorney who did these things would be deliberately disrespecting this Court and knowingly shirking his professional responsibilities, offenses for which he would be lucky to retain his bar card, much less an intact bank balance.

For Mr. Parker’s sake, and because the Court has not time to hold a sanctions hearing–in part because it must take time out of deciding the actual legal issues in this case to address the self-serving entreaties of attention-seekers like Mr. Parker–the Court assumes Mr. Parker is as incompetent as he appears. Rather than sanction him, the Court simply does what Mr. Parker would have done if he was a competent professional, and seals attachment 7 to his motion.

IT IS ORDERED that Parker’s motion for leave to File an Amicus Brief is DENIED.

Please, let Parker Jr., file a fourth motion. Pretty please? I really just wanna see what will be left of his, Sen. Parker’s and Rep. Miller’s carcasses once Judge Sparks is done picking his teeth with their splintered bones if they continue to aggrieve him.

(Curiously, the author behind the source report then received an angry message from Sen. Patrick who, while confirming he filed the first motion, denies that he ever filed the second or third ones. From what I gather, it sounds like someone at Liberty Institute filed the last two motions in his stead, apparently without his approval.)

(via Dispatches from the Culture Wars)