Rule would ban judges’ membership in conservative group

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Judges have been known to pull some unusual stunts. There was the one in Texas who sent a hair salon owner to jail for opening her business. Another, in Washington, D.C., is trying to orchestrate his own prosecution after the Justice Department moved to drop its case against Michael Flynn.

Now a proposed rule that would restrict judges’ membership in the Federalist Society, a conservative organization, is under investigation. It also would restrict membership in the left-wing American Constitution Society.

But it would not limit membership in other groups, such as the left-leaning American Bar Association.

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Fox News reported Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, is reviewing the proposal from the Judicial Conference’s Committee on Codes of Conduct.

Jordan sees discrimination in the rule.

“The draft advisory opinion discriminates against the viewpoints of members of the judiciary who chose to associate with the Federalist Society,” Jordan said in a letter to the Office of the General Counsel for the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts.

Jordan said that more than 200 federal judges and close to 30 members of Congress have expressed concern over the plan.

The proposal’s objective is to eliminate some organizations because official affiliation “could convey to a reasonable person that the affiliated judge endorses the views and particular ideological perspectives advocated by the organization” and “call into question the affiliated judge’s impartiality on subjects as to which the organization has taken a position.”

But Jordan argues the proposal itself is biased.

“The ABA has openly advocated for liberal causes and directly engaged in cases or controversies before federal courts, even filing amicus briefs in high-profile Supreme Court appeals,” Jordan explained.

Jordan wants to know why the proposal was drafted, who supported it and what discussions were held about it.

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