January 4, 2013

The Recorder publishes an in-depth article on Justice Goodwin Liu

This week, Scott Graham at The Recorder published this interesting, in-depth piece on the Court’s newest associate justice, Goodwin Liu. The article discusses everything from Liu’s relations with other members of the Court to his demeanor on the bench, his use of annual law clerks and much more. The piece is particularly noteworthy for its exploration of Liu’s restrained and thoughtful jurisprudence. Graham quotes Liu’s dissent in People v. Lopez (2012) 55 Cal.4th 569, in which the Court struggled with a Sixth Amendment confrontation clause issue about which the U.S. Supreme Court has not provided clear guidance. There, Liu was unwilling simply to predict how the nation’s highest court would likely rule in the future. Instead, revealing something of his approach to the task of judging, Liu wrote: “As a court tasked with applying an evolving line of jurisprudence, our role is not simply to determine what outcome will likely garner five votes on the high court. Our job is to render the best interpretation of the law in light of the legal text and authorities binding on us.” (Id. at pp. 593-594 (dis. opn. of Liu, J.))

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