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Wednesday, March 15, 2006 

Judge Sykes' Speech Getting Attention

An article in The American Spectator focuses on three female jurists and their recent speeches. Those three women are former Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, Judge Edith Jones of the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, and Judge Diane Sykes of the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Sykes' speech, given at Marquette University, is praised by writer Quin Hillyer as "a compelling case that the Wisconsin high court in 2004-05 has, not just in results but in conventions of legal reasoning, made a radical (and dangerous) shift away from accepted norms." As I have stated in the past, I totally agree.

Judge Diane Sykes

Hillyer also acknowledges the recent high profile attention that Judge Sykes has received and why it is deserved.
It is for good reason that young Judge Sykes (born in 1957) is on many handicappers' short lists for the next Supreme Court opening. Her speech, a critique of the most recent term of the Wisconsin Supreme Court (of which she was a member until joining the federal appellate court in 2004), was a model of clarity, sound reasoning, and correct (humble, textualist) judicial principle.
I think that Judge Sykes is probably one of two names on the "female list" for the next Supreme Court vacancy. The other name is Judge Karen Williams of the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals.


Judge Karen Williams

She has strong Senate support and has been on her court for almost 13 years. That's a long, Alito-like record. Judge Williams reminds me a lot of Justice Rehnquist during the early to mid 1970s. This might make her a more attractive pick than Judge Sykes.

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  • I'm Steve
  • From Milwaukee, Wisconsin, United States
  • "There is only one basic human right, the right to do as you damn well please. And with it comes the only basic human duty, the duty to take the consequences." P.J. O'Rourke
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