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Another Judicial Recusal in DeLay Case

by TChris

Goose, meet gander.

Two days after U.S. Rep. Tom DeLay won a fight to get a new judge in his case, prosecutors on Thursday succeeded in ousting the Republican jurist responsible for selecting the new judge. Administrative Judge B.B. Schraub recused himself after District Attorney Ronnie Earle filed a motion asking for his removal from the case.

DeLay succeeded in removing a judge who had donated more than $5,000 to Democratic campaigns. Earle discovered that Judge Schraub has contributed more than $5,000 to Republican candidates, including DeLay's friend, Gov. Rick Perry.

Schraub will ask the chief justice of the Texas Supreme Court to name a judge to preside over DeLay's case. You can bet that both sides already know whether the chief justice has been a generous supporter of political campaigns.

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  • Re: Another Judicial Recusal in DeLay Case (none / 0) (#1)
    by cpinva on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:05:43 PM EST
    since all judges in texas are elected, this is going to make it somewhat difficult to find a non-partisan one to preside. even if you made no donations, you probably still ran under one party banner or the other. an argument can be made that you aren't going to be objective, solely because of your party affiliation. absent a showing that a judge is already tainted, by prior acts, inside the courtroom, this nonsense should be stopped. that's what appeals courts are for. using delay's logic, neither he nor the state can get a fair trial in texas. doesn't say much for his view of texas.

    Re: Another Judicial Recusal in DeLay Case (none / 0) (#2)
    by roy on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:05:43 PM EST
    Schraub will ask the chief justice of the Texas Supreme Court to name a judge to preside over DeLay's case.
    The Chief may have voted for or against Delay...

    Re: Another Judicial Recusal in DeLay Case (none / 0) (#3)
    by squeaky on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:05:43 PM EST
    Is is all about wearing down Earle and eventually having the trial moved out of Austin which is a democratic island in a red sea. De Guerrin sucessfully used the exact same tactic against Earle with the same Judge when he represented Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison and it worked.
    Perkins recused himself from presiding over the trial of U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas, after she was indicted in 1993 for allegedly tampering with physical evidence and tampering with a governmental record. Perkins had contributed to Hutchison's Democratic opponent, Richard Fisher.
    link

    Re: Another Judicial Recusal in DeLay Case (none / 0) (#4)
    by Quaker in a Basement on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:05:44 PM EST
    I know! Let Nader choose the judge!

    Re: Another Judicial Recusal in DeLay Case (none / 0) (#5)
    by Deb on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:05:44 PM EST
    More info on the Texas Supreme Court Chief Justice at Juanita's November 3 - In case you haven't heard, Travis County DA Ronnie Earle asked the judge who recused the first judge off the DeLay case because of political contributions to recuse himself because of .... political contributions. I'm getting a headache. From the Austin American Statesman -- Judge B.B. Schraub, the presiding judge for the 3rd Administrative Judicial Region, should step aside for the same reasons that state District Judge Bob Perkins, a Democrat, was removed from hearing DeLay's case: Both had given political donations Just a few minutes ago, I got a call from a trusted source in Austin saying that Judge Schraub agreed and referred the matter to the Texas Supremes. It appears that the judge in DeLay's case will be appointed by Texas Supreme Court Chief Justice Wallace Jefferson, who even has a handy contribution form for Tom and Jack Abramoff on his website. He, of course, is a Republican. He, of course, was first appointed Chief Justice by Governor Rick Perry. I think we're back at square one here. I've got a couple of lawyers telling me that they don't see where the Texas Supremes have any jurisdiction here. They don't hear criminal matters. If anything, it should go to the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals. The Austin American Statesman has updated. Okay, here's the deal. Jefferson is the most tainted of all. He got TRMPAC's endorsement and Wallace Jefferson's 2002 campaign treasurer was TRMPAC's treasurer Bill Ceverha. Nevertheless, Jefferson -- with only a couple hour's thought, mind you -- appointed Bexar County's District Judge Pat Priest. More to come .....

    Re: Another Judicial Recusal in DeLay Case (none / 0) (#6)
    by Sailor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:05:44 PM EST
    That's like saying, 'hey, you don't like thomas, we'll give you scalia';-)

    Re: Another Judicial Recusal in DeLay Case (none / 0) (#7)
    by Che's Lounge on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:05:44 PM EST
    "Play the game, play the game, play the game" Queen

    Re: Another Judicial Recusal in DeLay Case (none / 0) (#8)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:05:44 PM EST
    From Lexis
    Judge Pat Priest, a former district judge, now sits daily as assigned in the district courts of Texas. Judge Priest is a former Adjunct Professor of Criminal Law and Procedure at St. Mary's University School of Law and continues to act as Adjunct Professor of Trial Advocacy at St. Mary's. A founding member and director of the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association in the 1970's, he was also a director and chairman of the Criminal Law and Procedure Committee of the San Antonio Bar Association.
    Open Secrets shows no record of contributions.

    Re: Another Judicial Recusal in DeLay Case (none / 0) (#9)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:05:44 PM EST
    DeGuerin isn't really serving his client especially well by opening the Pandora's box of forum-shopping. Generally, when your client is free on bail, delays (pun unavoidable) are on your side. That rule doesn't apply when your client is the de facto House Speaker. If DeGuerin's only job is to keep DeLay out of prison, then he's doing a bang-up job. But if the object is not merely acquittal, but for DeLay to maintain as much as possible of the power he has amassed, then the delays are no friend of DeLay's (sorry).

    Re: Another Judicial Recusal in DeLay Case (none / 0) (#10)
    by cpinva on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:05:44 PM EST
    jefferson has now recused himself. deguerin, who started the dominos falling, is now complaining that earle is playing games. could we just get texas to secede again?

    Re: Another Judicial Recusal in DeLay Case (none / 0) (#11)
    by txpublicdefender on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 01:05:45 PM EST
    And this is exactly why the first motion to recuse should never have been granted. I, too, wonder what the heck the Chief Justice of the Texas Supreme Court was doing in this case in the first place. The Supreme Court has no jurisdiction in criminal cases at all. Maybe they have some sort of administrative jurisdiction since they are the court of last resort on lawyer and judicial discipline. If DeGuerin successfully gets the case moved to his home county, I will know the fix is in. Jurisdiction is properly in Travis County. Just because Travis County is more liberal than a lot of other counties doesn't mean they can't seat a fair and impartial jury there. And there is no reason to believe that DeLay's home county will be any fairer to the State than Travis County would be to DeLay.