The Corner

Does Judge Martin’s Not Being a Muslim Change the Bias Argument?

Given that Judge Martin’s representative denies that he is a Muslim and that I now think he probably did not claim to be a Muslim during the court proceeding, the question arises whether it is still valid to argue, as I did yesterday, that Martin should have recused himself from the case on the ground of judicial bias. Absolutely not. It absolutely is. [ACM – Sorry for the confusion — writing too fast.] Martin’s status as a Muslim was not the focal point of my bias contention. I’ve just added the following to the post in question:

UPDATE: … This post has been corrected because, after further review, it appears Judge Martin’s reported statement on the audio of the court proceeding, “I’m a Muslim, I find it offensive”, is actually, “F’Im a Muslim, I’d find it offensive.” For further details on the transcription, see this post. I note that I have not retracted my assertion that Judge Martin ”had no business sitting on a case in which he was biased against the complainant.” While there would surely be additional grounds to support a judicial bias claim if Judge Martin were a Muslim, my argument was not based on Martin’s being a Muslim. It was based on Martin’s hyper-sensitivity to Islamic sensibilities, which rendered him receptive to the absurd claim that sharia principles can be a valid defense to a Pennsylvania harassment charge. Though there would be grounds for worry, a judge who was faithful to his responsibilities but who happened to be a Muslim could theoretically sit fairly and impartially on this case. On the other hand, a judge who is an adherent of current American government policy toward Islam — who, for example, sees no conflict between sharia and the federal Constitution, or who thinks fear of Muslim reactionary violence is a good reason to curb the First Amendment — should not have sat on this case, regardless of whether he happened to be a Muslim.

Most Popular

Elections

The Democrats’ Disastrous CNN LGBT Town Hall

A few days after Donald Trump committed the worst foreign-policy blunder of his presidency by betraying America’s Kurdish allies in northern Syria, former vice president Joe Biden, the elder statesman and co-frontrunner in the Democratic presidential primary, was on a national stage talking to CNN’s primetime ... Read More
Politics & Policy

Fox News Anchor Shepard Smith Resigns

Fox News Channel's chief anchor, Shepard Smith, announced on air Friday that he would be resigning from his post after 23 years with the network. “This is my last newscast here,” said Smith. “Recently, I asked the company to allow me to leave Fox News. After requesting that I stay, they obliged.” He ... Read More
NR Webathon

Don’t Let Michael Mann Succeed

I  enjoyed the running joke of Jarndyce v. Jarndyce in the great Dickens novel Bleak House, back when I first read it. Little did I know that one day I and the magazine that I love would effectively be caught up in a version of that interminable case, courtesy of a litigious climate scientist with zero regard ... Read More
White House

What Is Impeachment For?

W hat is impeachment for? Seems like a simple question. Constitutionally speaking, it also appears to have a simple answer: to cite and remove from power a president guilty of wrongdoing. Aye, there’s the rub. What sort of wrongdoing warrants removal from power? I’d wager that the flames of ... Read More
Elections

Beto Proposes to Oppress Church with State

Beto O’Rourke’s presidential campaign is within the margin of error of non-existence, but in his failure he has found a purpose: expressing the Democratic id. His latest bid for left-wing love came at a CNN forum on gay rights, where he said that churches that oppose same-sex marriage should have to pay ... Read More