Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Marcia Cooke in the spotlight

I've received a bunch of emails from out-of-towners asking about Judge Cooke, the newest judge in this District, and drawing interest because she is the judge assigned to Jose Padilla's case. One of the comments asks whether the government was "judge-shopping" and others like Prof. Froomkin have flat out said that the government specifically selected Judge Cooke by adding Padilla to a superceding indictment. Perhaps DOJ looked at Judge Cooke's resume and saw that she was a Bush appointee and a former AUSA and thought that she would be a push-over for the feds. Froomkin (who I doubt has ever appeared before her) goes so far as to say "the government should not expect a hostile bench." If this is what the government thought, it is dead wrong. Judge Cooke -- to put it in Chief Justice Roberts' words -- calls a strike a strike and a ball a ball, and will not be pushed around by the government. She is known in this community as a fair judge who listens carefully to both sides and calls it right down the middle. She is well liked by criminal defense attorneys and prosecutors alike. (In the interest of full disclosure, I have tried two lengthy trials in front of Judge Cooke.) In addition, I have posted about this case pre-Padilla here.

The interesting aspect of the case for me is that it shows true weakness by the President. Perhaps the administration lost confidence in its legal arguments due to the Supreme Court next week. Combine this with the recent polls and perhaps the feds figured this was an easy out. We'll see...

On a separate note, isn't Miami always the center of this poltically charged stuff -- Elian, Bush v. Gore, Padilla, and so on. Finally, via How Appealing: "Prepared Remarks of Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales at the Press Conference Regarding the Indictment of Jose Padilla": You can access them online here, while the indictment itself can be viewed at this link. And the memorandum from President Bush authorizing the transfer of Jose Padilla from the control of the U.S. Military to the control of the U.S. Department of Justice is here.

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

If the court wants a law officer to watch Mr. Padilla while he views the secret government documents, why don't they find an appropriately skilled DEAF person (a body guard, black belt martial arts master, etc) deputize them for the US Marshall service, and have them guard Mr. Padilla. Then they won't have to worry about any defense conversations getting passed on to prosucution lawyers.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like she WAS a pushover for the Government. She is discounting 3.5 years in jail as not counting toward a speedy trial. What a joke. He has been totally mind and brain washed. He can't even defend himself and he is an American citizen. How can this judge do this?

I think we are in for some really bad times if this judiciary has sold out to the Bush mafia.

Anonymous said...

Marcia Cooke has now become an infamous name in US history. I do not expect her to physically survive the coming political storm. In fact, I predict about 40,000 bushco deaths within ten years once their power is finally broken. They will be hunted down like nazis for decades to the ends of the earth and exterminated.

The zionists will do the exterminations and then they will place some reasonable laws over the presently-uncivilized, massively corrupt USA.

That is what is happening. In short, out with old boys, and in with supportable, legal laws on the books.

Marcia Cooke is already history.

Isaiah said...

It's been a while since that post, but . . . I've been watching the trial and she appears to me to be a considerate, thoughtful, and most importantly a fair judge.

Adam said...

She's already called one ball a strike by allowing in the CNN bin laden interview- clearly any dubious relevance it might have is far outweighed by the prejudice of playing the tape before the jury. Thus it pretty clearly should not be allowed in under the federal rules of evidence. She might be a straight shooter in ordinary criminal cases, but this one is about pure politics.

Dhalgren said...

Well, Cooke sure served the President today. She sentenced a man to 17 years, 4 months for a lot of allegations and bad thoughts. Not a dirty bomber. Just a dirty deal.

Anonymous said...

A sad, sad day for justice in the United States of America and Judge Marcia Clarke will be known for her bit part in this modern day McCarthyism that is the Bush era. Shame on you.

Anonymous said...

I'm truly disgusted with Judge Marica Cooke's lenient 17 year sentence for Jose Padilla. Anyone who plots to commit or conspires to commit a crime against our United States should be tried for treason and put away for life. Padilla will be released at 54 years of age, leaving him plenty of time to terrorize again. For those who say Judge Cooke calls 'em correctly, I say she wasn't even at the game!