3d DCA Watch — The One Involving Sarah Palin And An Undisclosed 11th Circuit Panel Judge

Hi kiddies, yes it’s that time again, when we hold our collective noses and pray, curse, clap, and peek at the weekly doings of our favorite little courthouse by the athletic field, yes without further adieu it’s 3d DCA Watch:

So we’ll argue and we’ll compromiseAnd realize that nothing’s ever changedFor all our mutual experienceOur separate conclusions are the same.Now we are forced to recognize our own inhumanityOur reason coexists with our insanityAnd though we choose between reality and madnessIt’s either sadness or euphoria

Whoah — how did those old Billy Joel lyrics get in there? (Boy, high school was fun).Anyways, here we go:

Clarendon v. Shogreen:

Poor Susan Lerner. Eminently qualified. A top-notch appellate lawyer. A great person. Shoulda been a judge a long time ago. Looks like Tina Fey.

But then that moose-eating lipstick-wearing hockey mom who stares down Russia from her front lawn decided to run for American Idol or whatever so now Susan Lerner has to be compared to someone other than the brilliant and brainy creator behind 30 Rock.

How would that make you feel?Worse yet, some bullcrap judge won’t recuse when sitting in her appellate capacity as part of an 11th Circuit panel in a case where you represent some fancy-pants insurance client. Even worser, that same judge denies as moot the very motion to recuse that was directed to her!That’s a no-no, says Judge Rothenberg. But first we have to decide which recusal standard applies — that for a trial judge, or that for an appellate judge. (Don’t bother asking why that question has never come up before…)Judge Rothenberg says to use the appellate standard and thus:

We therefore quash the order denying Clarendon’s motion to disqualify the panel member as moot, and without commenting on the legal sufficiency of the motion to disqualify the panel member, we resubmit the motion to that panel member for a ruling on the motion to disqualify pursuant to the Carlton standard.

So the great Ms. Lerner not only wins the case for her client, she forges new law in our District and gets a ruling from the 3d that establishes the standard for all future cases.

See, I told you she shoulda been a judge already. Strike that — Susan Lerner for VP!!!