Georgia Criminal Appellate Law Blog Offering Insight on the Practice of Appellate Law and Commentary from the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals

New Appointee to Georgia Court of Appeals: “Stare Decisis is fo’ Suckas”

Posted in Georgia Court of Appeals

suckas.JPGThe Georgia governor appointed two new members of the Georgia Court of Appeals. Keith Blackwell is a native of Cherokee County, Georgia, a former assistant district attorney in Cobb County, Georgia, and a fomer clerk to Judge J.L. Edmondson of the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals. His term will last through 2012.

Also appointed was Stephen “Steve” Dillard, an author of Southern Appeal, to fill another spot on the Georgia Court of Appeals. That blog lists 11th Circuit Court of Appeals Judge William Pryor as its “Patron Saint.” Its tagline is “Giving the bayonet to the ‘dictatorship of relativism’ since 2002.”

One of his more famous blog posts was  titled “Stare Decis is fo’ suckas” More specifically, he wrote:

For precedent to be entitled to respect it must have a respectable basis. Stare decisis means nothing to me unless the constitutional basis of the decision (or line of jurisprudence in question) is sound. Thus, were I on the Supreme Court, I would vote to overrule Roe no matter how much time had passed. I find it rather interesting that liberals only wave the flag of stare decisis when the decision in question enshrines their value preference into constituitonal law (e.g. Roe).

Since the caselaw is so rarely in support of the appellant in criminal cases in Georgia, the opportunity to get back to the Constitution, particularly on Fourth Amendment issues, is most welcome. Also, the ole Westlaw and Lexis subscription was starting to get expensive anyway.

For readers who want to comment on the blog post over at Southern Appeal (or “Rebel Yells,” as they are called there) where the appointment was announced, act fast. With the appointment of Judge Dillard, the blog is closing soon.

Judge Dillard is featured in a wikipedia article, which references his work with the Mike Huckabee campaign and in the Federalist Society.

 

  • Richard Schrade

    Scott
    As you are aware, you and I agree about most things when it comes to criminal defense. I take it from the tone of your post that you disagree with the position that ““For precedent to be entitled to respect it must have a respectable basis. Stare decisis means nothing to me unless the constitutional basis of the decision (or line of jurisprudence in question) is sound”
    So my question to you is “Would you have ruled differently in Brown v. Board of Education, since Plessey v. Ferguson was still good law?”
    You may not like his politics, and you may disagree about the underlying constitutional basis of Roe, but he is right at the essence.
    R

  • http://jscottkey.com/ Scott Key

    Richard. I don’t know that we should necessarily be welded to bad precedent, particularly as standards and mores evolve over time. The troubling thing is that when precedent is disregarded at the State level, it generally destroys a right that the accused once had.
    There must be some reason that we stand up and cited those cases to the court.
    And, of course, the constitutional basis for the jurisprudence in questions always seems unsound when my opponent is using it.
    Sorry I didn’t find your comment until now.