“A federal jury rejected Teresa Wagner’s First Amendment claim that the University of Iowa College of Law denied her a faculty position due to her conservative politics, but deadlocked over her Equal Protection claim that she was passed over in favor of less qualified candidates. The U.S. Magistrate Judge declared a mistrial on the 14th Amendment claim.” [Paul Caron, TaxProf, with many links; earlier here, etc.; Bainbridge, more, related on faculty political leanings]
Mary Reichard interviewed me about Teresa Wagner’s suit against the University of Iowa law school for the broadcast show “The World and Everything In It.” More on the Wagner case and its recent mistrial here, here, etc. Also on the politics of law faculties: is it believable that roughly 19 percent of law professors are going to vote for Romney, or is that number implausibly high? [Prof. Bainbridge; Tom Smith, Right Coast]
The Associated Press covers the pending lawsuit against the University of Iowa by Teresa Wagner, who believes she was shot down for a job teaching legal writing because of her outspokenly conservative views (earlier here, here, and here). A federal trial starts Monday in Davenport, Iowa.
One sentence misses the mark slightly in conveying my views. As I should have taken pains to make clear, the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision, as a decision, is by no means sacrosanct in legal academia; law professors both right and left, young and old, criticize it often for its reasoning, as a political blunder, and on other grounds. What is a good bit less common — and especially rare among younger academics aiming for tenure offers at law schools with no religious affiliation — is a passionate stand against abortion in itself, like Ms. Wagner’s.
The university, for its part, disclaims political bias and apparently intends to argue that Ms. Wagner did not perform as well at the interview stage as her lawyers contend. As I told the AP, while I have no doubt that political bias is rife — in 2007, Iowa’s law faculty is recorded as having had 46 registered Democrats and only one registered Republican — I have severe doubts that the courts will improve matters by peering over the hiring committees’ shoulders. (& TaxProf with links; Des Moines Register “Juice”; Prof. Bainbridge)
- Harris v. Quinn aftermath: California teacher’s suit might tee up renewed challenge to Abood [Rebecca Friedrichs, earlier here, here, etc.] Recalling when CTA spent its members money trying to convince them their voting preferences were wrong [Mike Antonucci]
- Calcasieu parish school board in Louisiana votes to stop paying insurance on student athletics [AP/EdWeek]
- “Maryland Tested Kids on Material It No Longer Teaches, Guess What Happened?” [Robby Soave, Common Core transition]
- Sexual harassment training of college faculty: a professor talks back [Mark Graber, Balkinization]
- Eighth Circuit orders new trial in Teresa Wagner’s lawsuit charging Iowa Law discriminated against her because of her conservative views [Paul Caron/TaxProf, earlier]
- “The 4 NYC teachers banned from classrooms who rake in millions” [Susan Edelman, New York Post] Adventures in Bronx teacher tenure [New York Daily News]
- New Jersey: “Expensive New School Security System Traps Teacher in Bathroom” [Lenore Skenazy, Reason]
- No shock there: “Law Profs Oppose ABA Proposal to Eliminate Tenure as Accreditation Requirement” [NLJ via Paul Caron/TaxProf, related]
- Teresa Wagner hiring suit against U. of Iowa law school on appeal to Eighth Circuit [Daily Iowan, quotes me; Caron; earlier]
- Scalia: “truly appalling” most students at elite law schools not asked to read Federalist Papers [Chicago Sun-Times] Do “wacky” offerings at such schools necessarily sound so wacky? [Elie Mystal, Above the Law]
- Canada’s first evangelical law school wins approval, backed by civil libertarians, over objections centering on its no-nonmarital-sex pledge [Vancouver Sun, MacLean’s, related, earlier]
- “Self-Interest and Sinecure: Why Law School Can’t be ‘Fixed’ From Within” [David Barnhizer (Cleveland State), via Caron]
- “Intellectual Diversity and the Legal Academy,” conference by Harvard Federalist Society now online [Harvard JLPP]
- Tonight (Wed.) at 7:30 I’m scheduled to join Al-Jazeera America’s “The Stream,” hosted by Lisa Fletcher with Wajahat Ali, to discuss the state of law schools, with Profs. Paul Campos (Colorado) and Gillian Hadfield (USC). Tune in!
Teresa Wagner had sued the University of Iowa’s law school alleging bias against her as an ideological conservative, but a jury ruled against her on most counts, and now the judge in the case has denied her retrial motion and granted the university’s motion to dismiss the remaining count. [AP via Adler; court opinion; comments by lawprofs Herbert Hovenkamp of U of I and David Bernstein of George Mason; earlier on this case, on which I was quoted in the press a number of times.]
- “It’s time for the ABA to deregulate law schools” [Richard Painter, Legal Ethics Forum]
- Curb schadenfreude please, it’s just class action entrepreneurship: “Law Schools Sued for Lying About Lawyering” [NY Magazine]
- “AALS President: Law Professors Should Be ‘Cheerleaders’ for ‘Our Way of Life.'” [Instapundit]
- “Widener Law settles with Prof. Lawrence Connell” [William Jacobson, Legal Insurrection, earlier here, here, here, etc.] Sensitivity camp at U. of Idaho Law [ATL] Peter Wood on Teresa Wagner case [Chronicle]
- Perspective of a practitioner turned professor [David Hricik] Claim: proliferation of “soft” curriculum really isn’t something to worry about [Brad Wendel] “Justice Scalia makes up with University of Chicago” [Chicago Sun-Times]
- “The coming crash in legal education” [Richard Bourne, Creighton Law Review/University of Baltimore/SSRN via Caron] Could law schools recover from adversity the way dental schools did? [Eric Chiappinelli, Faculty Lounge] “Why Occam’s Razor cuts in favor of making law an undergraduate degree” [Russ Pearce, LEF]
- US News changes rating methodology, and law schools’ part-time day programs suddenly dry up [Caron]
- Attention New Yorkers: if you missed my talk Tuesday at Fordham on Schools for Misrule, I’ll be back in town next Wednesday (Feb. 22) for a 1 p.m. talk at Brooklyn Law School before that school’s Federalist Society chapter; also that evening at Yale with distinguished Prof. John Fabian Witt commenting.