All posts by WisBlawg

The US Code gets a slight reorganization

Starting on September 1st, the US Code added a new Title. Sections concerning the voting and elections that were previously found in titles 2 and 42 are now being moved to a new Title 52. The idea behind the addition is to both simplify the existing sections of 2 and 42 and make a more coherent Title that pertains only to voting and elections.
For online versions of the code, you can now cite Title 52. For print editions, the change will take effect with the publication of supplement II of the 2012 edition.
For more background on the change and resources to check on during the transition, visit the USC webpage that discusses the update in more depth.

New features on Congress.Gov

As Thomas.gov continues to evolve into Congress.Gov, more features are being added. Recently, In Custodia Legis, the Law Library of Congress Blog, announced some of most recent bells and whistles that were added:
*You can now search for presidential nominations back to 1981.
*Congress.Gov also allows you to create an account so you can save customized searches and other bookmarks on the site.
*Possibly most importantly, the About Section has been expanded to be more user-friendly and transparent.
Check out Congress.Gov here and read the original In Custodia Legis post on the updates here. Happy Searching!

New Display in the Law Library about Dean George Young

Over the last year, one portion of the Law School Faculty Tower underwent some renovation, adding more accessible technology to better meet the needs of the faculty. To make room for the new additions, the display about Dean George Young needed to be moved. Fortunately, the library had a great space for it and was able to put together a display that provides students and all library users with background on one of the Law School’s most well-respected deans and faculty members.
George H. Young was member of the Law School faculty from 1950 to 1981, serving as Dean from 1958 to 1968. Dean Young made substantial contributions to the Law School and the University in a number of areas, ranging form overseeing the expansion of the Law School to working with NCAA and Big Ten athletics. He was known for always keeping an ‘open door’ for students.
During Young’s time as Dean, the Law School’s enrollment and faculty doubled. The new Law School building was constructed while Young was Dean, and the faculty became more diverse, including the hiring of Margo Melli and Shirley Abrahamson (the first tenured female faculty members). He was also an integral part of adding Jim Jones (the first African-American faculty member) to the faculty. Finally, the Law School was able to weather the tumultuous time when student protests were at the boiling point while Dean Young was in charge. Dean Young was involved in nearly every facet of the Law School, from the Law Review to expanding interdisplinary faculty.
When Dean Young died in 1981, the Law School passed a resolution to always reserve a space in the building dedicated to his memory. That space is now located near the library entrance on the fifth floor. Stop by and learn more about Dean Young next time you are here.
George Young Display

UW Law Library’s Newest Faculty READ Poster

Each year, the Law Library creates a new Faculty READ Poster to be added to our collection. This year, we were lucky enough to have emeritus professors Bill Whitford and Stewart Macaulay grace the poster. If you are in the library, be sure to check it out, as it is on temporary display near the reference desk. Big thanks to Mike Hall (our photographer) and a gigantic thanks to Mary Jo Koranda for coordinating and creating the poster layout. It looks great, and we are happy to share it with the world! Check out our other faculty READ posters on our Pinterest page.
Whitford and Macaulay Read Poster

UW Law School named 3rd Best School for Practical Training

National Jurist recently released their rankings of law schools for best practical training. The UW Law School placed third in the nation, receiving an “A+” for the experience it gives students.
Congrats to all the hard-working faculty and staff here at the law school! It is great to see such a great group of individuals be recognized for their hard work.
To read the full National Jurist article, click here.

The newest UW Law School Faculty and Staff Scholarship

Here is the most recent UW Law School Faculty and Staff scholarship from the UW Law School Legal Studies Research Papers series found on SSRN.
*Agricultural Cooperatives and the Law: Obsolete Statutes in a Dynamic Economy by Peter Carstensen, University of Wisconsin Law School
*Jim Jones: A Teacher, a Mentor, and an Inspiration to Law Students by William C. Whitford, University of Wisconsin Law School
*Short-Circuiting Contract Law: The Federal Circuit’s Contract Law Jurisprudence and IP Federalism by Shubha Ghosh, University of Wisconsin Law School
*The Implementation of Exhaustion Policies: Lessons from National Experiences by Shubha Ghosh, University of Wisconsin Law School
*Commandeering, Coercion, and the Deep Structure of American Federalism by Andrew B. Coan, University of Wisconsin Law School

Legislative Reference Bureau Oral History Project still going strong

Several years ago, the Legislative Reference Bureau launched a very worthwhile project documenting the oral histories of Wisconsin citizens who worked in the Capitol and have helped facilitate the legislative process throughout the years, largely as representatives, senators or governors. While Bonnie wrote a post about the Project when it was first launched, it is certainly worth revisiting.
The LRB has now created 18 YouTube videos that capture these unique recollections, with all the interviews conducted by John Powell, formerly of Wisconsin Public Radio. The interviews run anywhere from one to two hours. You can view them either on the Oral History Homepage or on LRB’s YouTube channel.

Celebrate Abraham Lincoln’s birthday and read about his legal career

Today is Abraham Lincoln’s birthday, our 16th and arguably greatest president. His legacy as president and leader during the Civil War has been covered in great detail over the past 150 years. Sometimes, his career as a lawyer before his ascension to the presidency is overlooked (though all aspects of Lincoln’s life have been studied in detail!). One great way to get to know Lincoln beyond as president is to read about his experiences riding through the then-wilderness of the Midwest, serving as a lawyer for a variety of frontiersmen, farmers and small town residents.
One great book that the Law Library has in it’s Lincoln Collection is “Lincoln’s Own Stories”, edited by Anthony Gross. Originally published in 1912, the book is a unique collection of stories that were told by Lincoln himself (and those who knew him) ranging from his childhood to his time as Commander-In-Chief. An entire chapter is dedicated to Lincoln’s down-home musing and humorous remembrances of his time as a lawyer. That entire chapter is available online. You truly get a feel for Lincoln’s sense of justice and humor by reading these stories. Here is a short excerpt that tells the story of Lincoln and his contempt for frivolous lawsuits:
It was a common thing for Lincoln to discourage unnecessary lawsuits, and consequently he was continually sacrificing opportunities to make money. One man who asked him to bring suit for two dollars and a half against a debtor who had not a cent with which to pay, would not be put off in his passion for revenge. His counsel therefore gravely demanded ten dollars as a retainer. Half of this he gave to the poor defendant, who thereupon confessed judgment and paid the $2.50. Thus the suit was ended, to the entire satisfaction of the angry creditor.
You can find more great books about Lincoln (and the Civil War) by perusing our Lincoln Collection,located in the Quarles and Brady Reading Room. Happy Birthday, Mr. Lincoln!

Another attempt at implementing CCAP legislation

In the most recent attempt to give CCAP (Wisconsin’s online record system for circuit courts) a facelift, a new bill is being considered by the legislature. This time, the bill was introduced by Republican senator Glenn Grothman and Republican representative Mary Czaja and has initially found some support in both the Assembly and Senate.
If the bill passes, the State Court’s office would be required to remove any information about felony cases on CCAP within 120 days of receiving notice that the charges were dismissed or the defendant was found not guilty. The same goes for civil forfeiture cases, except the window is reduced to 90 days.
As always, any legislation that attempts to remove information from CCAP may run into resistance. Previous CCAP legislation has lost support in the face of protests that range from land lords to law enforcement that support CCAP in it’s current incarnation and would prefer that no information is removed.
It remains to be seen if this most recent bill will gain further traction. If you’d like to read the full text of the bill, click here.

The newest UW Law School Faculty and Staff Scholarship

Here is the most recent UW Law School Faculty and Staff scholarship from the UW Law School Legal Studies Research Papers series found on SSRN.
Fathers Behind Bars: Rethinking Child Support Policy Toward Low-Income Noncustodial Fathers and Their Families by Tonya L. Brito, University of Wisconsin Law School
On Fallibility and Finality: Why Thinking Like a Qadi Helps Me Understand American Constitutional Law by Asifa Quraishi, University of Wisconsin Law School
Judicial Gatekeeping of Suspect Evidence: Due Process and Evidentiary Rules in the Age of Innocence by Keith A. Findley, University of Wisconsin Law School
No Altars: A Survey of Islamic Family Law in United States by Asifa Quraishi, University of Wisconsin Law School and Najeeba Syeed-Miller, Independent
Fixing Students’ Fixed Mindsets: Paving the Way for Meaningful Assessment by Carrie Sperling, University of Wisconsin Law School, Frank J. Remington Center and Susan Shapcott, Arizona State University (ASU)
The Unbearable Lightness of Criminal Procedure by Ion Meyn, University of Wisconsin Law School