Topic: Professions & Institutions

Scalia’s Other Pal

A Scalia-Cheney addendum:

The Wall Street Journal got a hold of a letter written to Justice Scalia by none other than Alan Morrison, lead counsel to the Sierra Club for its motion demanding Scalia’s recusal in the Cheney case. It was sent just two days before the motion was filed. Address to “Dear Nino.” (“Justice Scalia” to you and me; his friends call him “Nino”…), the chatty note reminds the Justice that Morrison would be moving on to a teaching position at Stanford soon:

“Â…Assuming we go to Stanford, we will be around until the summer, and perhaps we can get together before then. But if not, perhaps you will come to visit there a few days and talk with my students: imagine the reaction if they found out that we actually agree on some issues! Best to Maureen.”

“Sincerely, Alan. [ Morrison’s friends call him Alan.]”

Thus the irony: the arguments that Morrison uses in his brief to maintain that that Justice Scalia’s friendship with Vice-president Cheney requires him to disqualify himself from deliberations in the energy task force case would seem to require that Scalia disqualify himself from deliberating on the Sierra Club’s motion itself.

And surprise! Scalia ruled against his pen-pal, Morrison.

The remaining problem that Scalia chooses to ignore: if and when the Justice casts a deciding vote on the Court in favor of Cheney’s position, none of this will stop the majority of commentators from saying that it looks like Nino sided with his hunting buddy, Dick.

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