A reader from Texas checks in ...
I have been licensed to practice law in Texas since 1961. During that period we have seen the complete deterioration of the 5th Circuit in New Orleans from a beacon of reason during the civil rights battles (of course it then included more States including Alabama) to the a rubber stamp right-wing caricature of its former stature.
Here is my compromise, as much as it pains me: Let Owens go through. It will not make the 5th appreciably worse; the only more retrograde Circuit is the 4th. I know it will further imbalance the 5th and violate the dictum laid down by Sen. Schumer. The way I see it is that the 5th is a lost cause or sacrifice area already and for the foreseeable future. But, the DC Circuit to which Judge Brown has been nominated is both more important and more closely divided. Brown is so far out of the mainstream she almost makes Owens look moderate. Brown must be stopped.I would tend to agree. Although I may not agree with much of Justice Owen's jurisprudence - I think that she is a qualified jurist, and will not dramatically change the makeup of the far-right 5th Cir. Brown, however, is a different story - my impression is that she is far more radical, far less qualified, and the DC Cir. is much more balanced.
Click here for the perspective of a Houston attorney from Houston's Clear Thinkers.