Well, that's why they call it gossip! Two other "little birds" have informed Article III Groupie that her prior intelligence concerning Professor William Kelley is incorrect. According to the first source, Professor Kelley is potentially headed for a new position, but not for a seat on the D.C. Circuit. Instead, Kelley may be taking "a high-level, law-related position in the Bush Administration." A second source offers more specific information: "Kelley is going to the White House as a Deputy Counsel. (Perhaps this is a way station for a D.C. Circuit post.)"
A3G has a high degree of confidence in her latest avian advisors, so she apologizes for her apparent error. She would also like to use this occasion to echo the following observations of Professor Randy Barnett: "If I make the slightest factual error in a blog post, I can count on the readers to point it out PRONTO.... And unlike traditional journalism, I have a ready means to correct errors almost instantaneously."
If Professor Kelley doesn't end up at the White House Counsel's Office, A3G notes that the following two positions remain open: (1) Solicitor General, or (2) principal of the Finishing School for the Elect, i.e., Assistant Attorney General for the Office of Legal Counsel. At the current time, both of these posts are held by "actors": Acting SG Paul Clement, and Acting AAG Steve Bradbury. Does anyone have tidbits concerning when these positions might be filled, and who might be filling them?
(If A3G had her pick of these two jobs -- which she never will, since she is one of the Great Unwashed -- she would choose option (1). She would much rather be strutting her stuff at One First Street, showing off her newest pumps to the justices, than issuing an opinion on "whether canteen service provided through the Veterans' Canteen Service ('VCS') is exempt from review under the Federal Activities Inventory Reform Act of 1998, Pub. L. No. 105-270, 112 Stat. 2382 ('FAIR Act').")
While A3G is in the process of correcting and following up on prior posts, she will offer a few additional addenda and interesting reader correspondence. Unlike her correction concerning Professor Kelley, however, these items are rather untimely; some of them relate back to posts that are weeks old. (Their staleness is the result of A3G's hiding from her blog over the past few weeks.)
1. Back in this post, A3G inquired as follows of her readers: "A3G has heard that, in the past few years, Judge [Kim McLane] Wardlaw has been the Ninth Circuit judge most frequently vindicated in the Supreme Court. Can anyone confirm this?"
A reader offered this commendably detailed response:
[Y]ou asked a question about Judge Wardlaw's review rate before the Supremes. Her record is impressive: See Washington Legal Foundation v. Legal Foundation of Washington, 271 F.3d 835 (9th Cir. 2001) (en banc) (Wardlaw, J.), aff'd, Brown v. Legal Foundation of Washington, 538 U.S. 216 (2003) (Stevens, J.); Alaska v. United States EPA, 298 F.3d 814 (9th Cir. 2002) (Wardlaw, J.), aff'd, Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation v. EPA, 124 S.Ct. 983 (2004) (Ginsburg, J.); Altmann v. Republic of Austria, 317 F.3d 954 (9th Cir. 2002) (Wardlaw, J.), aff'd, 124 S.Ct. 2240 (2004) (Stevens, J.); City of San Diego v. Roe, No. 03-1669 (Dec. 6, 2004), rev'd, 356 F.3d 1108 (Wardlaw, J., dissenting).
Another reader furnished this additional information:
In terms of the #2 Superhottie's record before the Supremes, there was a pretty heated discussion over on the Greedy Clerks board a few months back that cited her record (you previously referred to it in one of your prior posts). It has all the 411....
However, because I know you value the truth, despite my overwhelming love for Judge Wardlaw, I must tell you she was once reversed. Yes, it is true. I think the case is Public Citizen -- it involved NAFTA and whether Mexican trucks should be let into the U.S. To make matters worse, it was a 9-0 decision. (But, unlike in San Diego, where a per curiam opinion sufficed, Justice Thomas actually wrote an opinion explaining her error. (As an aside, I believe Judge Reinhardt was on the Public Citizen panel!))
Nevertheless, even with this one-time error, she is 4/5 in authored opinions/dissents getting the nod by the Court. I don't think there is anyone on the Ninth, or any other circuit for that matter, who comes close to her (albeit in recent years).
A3G thanks her readers for this intelligence concerning one of UTR's most favorite judges (whom A3G interviewed, as you may recall, back in November 2004).
2. In this post, A3G commented as follows:
[T]he individual at the James Madison Dinner [of the Federalist New York Lawyers Chapter] who expressed enthusiasm for UTR is believed to be Jodi Balsam, the chief organizer of the dinner. A3G hopes this is the case! Ms. Balsam is a high-powered, conservative female lawyer, as well as a founder of the NYU Federalist Society. She sounds like a woman after A3G's own heart!
And now, A3G is delighted to share with you some correspondence from Ms. Balsam herself:
Dear A3G - I was thrilled to see my name mentioned in UTR’s Dec. 11 post, as undeserving as I am to be included in the same post as so many luminaries of the federal and state benches. Yes, it was I who shared my enjoyment of UTR with another guest at the Federalist Society James Madison Award Dinner. You might even call me an A3G-G, to borrow a phrase from your favorite Tax Court judge. And the answer to your question at the end of your Dec. 6 post is an unqualified yes.
Not that any of your posts have ever disappointed me, I was surprised that you did not mention that Judge Dennis Jacobs of the Second Circuit Court of Appeals also attended the Federalist Society dinner, and in fact co-chaired the dinner committee, giving warm and witty remarks to an appreciative crowd.
If it seems from my detailed recall of your posts that I have way too much time on my hands, you are probably right. Not only am I a member of the Great Unwashed (my clerkships were in the S.D.N.Y. and the Second Circuit Court of Appeals), I am also a member of the great underemployed, having decided to cut back on my law career to raise a family. I’m still making time for my local Federalist Society lawyers chapter, but that hardly makes me a “high-powered, conservative lawyer.” I nonetheless thank you for your kind words and would be privileged to be considered “a woman after your own heart.”
Looking forward to many more delightful UTR posts,
A3G thanks Ms. Balsam for her absolutely delightful missive -- as well as for pointing out the omission of Judge Jacobs from her discussion of the James Madison Dinner. She also commends Ms. Balsam for taking some time away from her legal career to focus on her family. Some of you may be surprised to hear such thoughts from A3G, who may strike some of you as obsessed with her career. But if A3G seems career-obsessed, it's largely because she has nowhere else to direct her energies; she has not yet been blessed with a husband and children. (But she does have a hunky date for Valentine's Day, thanks for asking, and she wishes her readers a belated Happy Valentine's Day!)
3. In the earliest version of her quiz about Judge Michael Chertoff, A3G stated that Eddie Antar of the "Crazy Eddie's" chain of electronics stores would appear in his own television advertisements. This was incorrect; the person who shouted out the store slogan in the TV spots was an actor. A3G thanks the many UTR readers who informed her of this error (which she previously corrected, in the original post).
As you can tell, A3G cares a great deal about accuracy. As a blogger, A3G cannot hide behind the masthead of a mass media outlet. Rather, her credibility is her only currency. She deeply regrets all errors, including her latest mistake concerning Professor Kelley. (But she begs for your indulgence: in the world of gossip, boo-boos are inevitable.)
A3G thanks all of you, her loyal readers, for promptly correcting her when she errs. And she respectfully requests your continued cooperation in helping to make "Underneath Their Robes" as accurate as possible.
Reversed and remanded,
P.S. It appears that some people are getting a little tired of reading UTR. To tell you the truth, A3G is getting a little tired of writing it. It's starting to feel stale to her, with a tiresome tone and repetitive jokes. She isn't ready to close UTR down -- the fate of some of her favorite blogs, such as Skallawwag and Curmudgeonly Clerk. But she's going to post less frequently (which she has already started doing), and she's going to stop feeling guilty about it (which she hasn't started doing).