The Airtight Case for Vacating Walker’s Ruling

That’s what I call Ed Whelan’s NRO article today, on the implications under standard recusal norms of Judge Vaughn Walker’s recent disclosure that he has been in a relationship with a man for the last ten years.  When I read Ed’s article, I thought, “I read a lot of news every day, and though I know I’ve been busy lately, how did I miss this news about Judge Walker?”  How is it not a major news story that the judge in the Prop 8 case can reasonably be thought to have his impartiality questioned?  How is it not news that this is the capstone of Judge Walker’s egregious behavior during the trial, and irremediably damages whatever integrity could have been claimed for his ruling last August?  Why did this not make the front page of the New York Times (or any other page for that matter), while today’s front page carries a decidedly non-newsy story about the efforts of homosexual students to undo the Christian ethic at Christian colleges?

And where, pray tell, are the liberal leaders in the legal academy and profession who, whatever their views on same-sex marriage, regard Judge Walker’s behavior as appalling?  Anyone?  Anyone?

Matthew J. Franck — Matthew J. Franck is the Director of the William E. and Carol G. Simon Center on Religion and the Constitution at the Witherspoon Institute in Princeton, New Jersey.

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