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Legal Commentary

Legalities Legalities

Life and the Law from ABC News Legal Correspondent Jan Crawford Greenberg

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Last Entry: September 08, 2009 at 22:32:17

Recent Entries: 178

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Watch: Banker Rescues Darling Ducklings

Posted on May 18, 2009
Joel Armstrong is no duck connoisseur. The 43-year-old banker and father of two learned everything he knows about ducks through Google. But this Saturday, none of that mattered as he helped rescue a new family of ducklings. For the past...

GM Dealer Hit by Tornado, But Spared the Corporate Knife

Posted on May 18, 2009
Last week was difficult for every GM dealer across the country, but maybe no dealership had a more stressful week than Jim Robertson Motors in Kirksville, Missouri. As Barbara Pinto reported on last Thursday?s World News, the Robertson dealership was...

Ousting a CEO & Paying Him $20 Million?

Posted on May 18, 2009
The Washington Post reported today that Rick Wagoner, the CEO of General Motors who was ousted by the Obama Administration, is still on the payroll while his promised $20 million severance package is being considered. Wagoner was asked to step...

Complete Text of Obama's Notre Dame Address

Posted on May 18, 2009
President Obama gave the commencement speech yesterday at the University of Notre Dame. The speech made headlines because there was upset over the President's pro-choice stance on abortion. Some in the Catholic university's audience as well as some who traveled...

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Who's on the Way to the Court: Chart the Course

Posted on May 12, 2009
When selecting a Supreme Court nominee, White House officials essentially plot the prospects out on a graph. On the x-axis, you measure how closely the nominee fits with what you want in a justice; on the y-axis, you measure how...

A Stealth Nominee?

Posted on May 12, 2009
White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs revealed a little more than usual today when asked about the process for selecting a Supreme Court nominee. He was asked a relatively innocuous question about whether the White House will be able to...

A Justice Who Has Juggled

Posted on May 08, 2009
I found myself praying for sun today making the kids? breakfast--a dozen second- grade boys are descending at 3:30 for my son?s birthday party, which by all accounts should be outside in a moonbounce and not, under any circumstances, indoors....

White House Formalizes Supreme Court Short List

Posted on May 07, 2009
The White House has formalized its short list of Supreme Court contenders and asked six prospects to provide personal background information, with an intensive vetting process now underway, according to sources close to the process.

Tortured Timing

Posted on May 06, 2009
News reports yesterday made much out of the fact that a draft report about the so-called ?torture memos? doesn?t recommend criminal prosecution for DOJ officials John Yoo and Jay Bybee, but instead would only refer them to their state bars...

The Harsh Interrogation Investigation

Posted on May 05, 2009
Bush Administration lawyers under investigation for memos that approved harsh interrogation techniques have mounted an aggressive defense to persuade the Justice Department to drop plans to refer them to state bar associations for possible disciplinary proceedings, sources tell ABC News.

Souter's Plans

Posted on May 01, 2009
David Souter has told friends for years he wanted nothing more than to leave the Supreme Court and return to his native New Hampshire, where he could sit by the fire in his drafty cabin and read his beloved books....

Are Southerners More Racist than Northerners?

Posted on April 29, 2009
For all the complex legal arguments over today?s blockbuster Voting Rights Act case, the core issue is a pretty simple one: How long does the South have to pay for the sins of its shameful past? The landmark 1965 legislation...

FCC Decision, Round One

Posted on April 28, 2009
The FCC won round one in the Supreme Court this morning in its effort to ban four-letter words on radio and network television, but the Court gave a strong hint that it the broadcasters will ultimately win the war.

Philip Morris Case Dismissed

Posted on March 31, 2009
The Supreme Court announced this morning it would not decide whether a $79.5 million punitive damages award against tobacco giant Philip Morris was excessive -- preserving a massive victory for the widow of a former smoker. In a one-sentence order,...

Justices Review 'Hillary: The Movie'

Posted on March 24, 2009
Ted Olson sang a different tune today in the Supreme Court than the one he carried just six years ago. Back then, as the solicitor general in the Bush Administration, he was defending the McCain-Feingold campaign finance law against a...

Marbury v. Madison: Nail-Biting Drama?

Posted on February 25, 2009
Whoever thought that Marbury v. Madison could be a page turner? Landmark constitutional law, yes, but a nail-biting drama crafted in dimly lit hotel rooms in Washington? Filled with memorable players such as "Old Bacon Face" Justice Samuel Chase and....

Court Rules on Religious Displays

Posted on February 25, 2009
The Supreme Court this morning unanimously ruled that local governments are not required to install any and all religious markers in public parks merely because they have other religious monuments displayed there. The case involved an obscure religious group, Summum,...

Court Upholds Conviction of Domestic Abuser Who Had Guns

Posted on February 24, 2009
The Supreme Court this morning rejected arguments by a man who assaulted his wife and later was convicted of illegally possessing firearms, saying a federal gun ban clearly was designed to keep weapons out of the hands of domestic abusers....

Justice Ginsburg Treated for Pancreatic Cancer

Posted on February 05, 2009
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg?s announcement today that she is being treated for early-stage pancreatic cancer came as a terrible blow to her friends, colleagues and former clerks, who have witnessed the 75-year-old diminutive intellectual powerhouse battle back from colon cancer...

Former Gitmo Prisoner, Turned al Qaeda Leader

Posted on January 23, 2009
Bush Administration critics have scoffed at claims by the Defense Department that as many as 61 former Guantanamo detainees have returned to the battlefield. They may want rethink their skepticism. It's now up to the Obama Administration to evaluate which...

Chief Justice Fumbles

Posted on January 20, 2009
Chief Justice John Roberts is a man who has made very few public missteps in his life -- but he appears to have made one when swearing in Barack Obama. After Obama stepped on the first line of the oath,...

A Woman Who Made a Difference

Posted on January 17, 2009
Riding aboard President-elect Barack Obama's whistlestop train tour from Philadelphia to Washington today were 40 "everyday" Americans, people who've made a difference in their towns or communities, or, in Lilly Ledbetter's case, perhaps the country as a whole...

Shock, Relief for 9/11 Families at Gitmo

Posted on December 09, 2008
For seven years, Maureen Santora has waited to hear the words. But she hadn't expected them now, just moments after she took her seat in a special courtroom on the Guantanamo Bay Naval Base. "We want to enter our plea,"...

Facing Evil

Posted on December 08, 2008
Seven years ago on the morning of September 11th, the phone rang for Alice Hoagland. "Mom, this is Mark Bingham," said the young man, giving his mother his full name. "I'm on a flight from Newark to San Francisco. There...


Posted on December 06, 2008
It's a real distraction when your daughters are crying over a football game. It means you have to be a responsible adult -- no tears, limited profanity ? and try to keep their focus on all that is good. And...

Obama's Citizenship and Alabama Football

Posted on December 05, 2008
Sharp readers of my last blog post will note what the court did NOT announce today. It granted two cases---in addition to the al-Marri "enemy combatant" case, it agreed to hear a case involving jury instructions. Conspicuously absent from the...

Court to hear Major Terrorism Case

Posted on December 05, 2008
The Washington Post's Bob Barnes and I have found more common ground: The Supreme Court has managed to distract us, momentarily, from our debate on whether Alabama can contain Tim Tebow or whether Florida will instead fold like Miami did...

From the Sublime to the Ridiculous

Posted on December 05, 2008
It pains me to have to do this, since I have vowed to write almost exclusively this week about Alabama football, but the legal challenge over Obama?s citizenship is now being so wildly misreported--and my bosses are asking about it?that...

Brawn, Tradition over Nouveau Glitz: A response to Barnes

Posted on December 05, 2008
Bob, First, thanks for saying I have my priorities straight. I hope you?ll vouch for me if my bosses here at ABC ask why I am writing almost exclusively these days about Alabama football. (I?ll do the same for you...

Dissing the Bear's Legend, too?

Posted on December 04, 2008
If you thought I was joking about the heated debate I was having with the Washington Post?s Bob Barnes yesterday, well, I wasn?t. (I also wasn't joking that everything I write this week will have some connection to the Crimson...

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