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Monday, December 1, 2008

Paterson 'disturbed' by list of potential top judges

Paterson 'disturbed' by list of potential top judges
by Jay Gallagher - Albany Bureau Chief - December 1, 2008

ALBANY - Gov. David Paterson said today he is "disturbed'' by the list of candidates sent to him by a screening panel to succeed Judith Kaye as the state's chief judge when she steps down on Dec. 31. He didn't answer when asked what disturbed him about the list, but an aide said later the problem is that no women and only one non-white candidate is among the group he has to pick a successor from. State law calls for Paterson to pick one of the names submitted to him by a screening panel. The panel is headed by John O'Mara of Elmira, a former Pataki administration official and prominent lobbyist. The aide said that Paterson noticed particularly that Carmen Ciparick, a Hispanic woman now sitting on the Court of Appeals, was not on the list.

It was not immediately apparent if Paterson could request a revised list from the group. "He won't get it (another list),'' said Vincent Bonventre, a professor at Albany Law School. "That's just not done.'' He said that Ciparick may not have been chosen because she's 66, and thus could serve only four years before being forced to retire, as Kaye is. Overall, he termed the group "by far the strongest list the commission has ever put out. These are extraordinary people.'' The seven people on it are Court of Appeals judges Theodore Jones (an African American) and Eugene Piggott; Jonathan Lippmann, former state chief administrative judge and now an Appellate Division justice; Evan Davis, former counsel to Gov. Mario Cuomo; Steven Fisher, another Appellate Division justice; and two non-judges, Peter Zimroth, head of the state Capital Defenders' Office, and George Carpinello of Albany. Kaye, who has been the top judge for 14 years, has to quit at the end of the year because she turned 70 this year.

Additional Facts on Chief judge candidates

-- George F. Carpinello, 58, a partner in the law firm of Boies, Schiller & Flexner LLP in Albany. He has been chair of the New York State Advisory Committee on Civil Practice since 1958.

-- Evan A. Davis, 64, former counsel to Gov. Mario Cuomo and currently a partner in the law firm of Clearly Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP and the editor in chief of the Columbia Law Review.

--Steven W. Fisher, 62, associate justice for the Second Ddepartment of the Appellate Division. He was the acting Supreme Court justice in Brooklyn from 1986 to 1989, and in Queens from 1990 through 1992

-- Theodore T. Jones Jr., 64, associate judge of the Court of Appeals. He served as Brooklyn from 1990 to 2006 and became well known in 2005 when he ordered harsh penalties against a transit union that had struck illegally.

--Jonathan Lippman, 63, Presiding Justice for the First Department of the Appellate Division. He served as chief administrative judge of the New York Unified Court System from 1996 to 2007.

--Eugene F. Pigott Jr., 62, Associate Judge of the New York Court of Appeals since 2005. He served as presiding justice from 2000 to 2006 in the fourth department of the Appellate Division

-- Peter L. Zimroth, 65, partner in the law firm of Arnold & Porter LLP. He was previously a director and member of the Executive Committee in the Legal Aid Society.


Anonymous said...

Memo to Dave: One of your and the new Chief Judge's assignments for the New Year is to dismantle that joke called the Judicial Nomination Committee. In addition, of course, to the dismantling of the statewide attorney grievance committees and the biggest bunch of thugs-- the entire corrupt Commission on Judicial Conduct.

Dave, you and Chief Judge Ted Jones got a lot of work to do, but you both are up to the task, and that's why we all love ya'

Anonymous said...

Does anyone one know how this Constitutional Ammendment came to be...

was it by Constitutional Convention ?

or by Legislative enactment?

huge difference in methods maybe?

Anonymous said...

Simple, Governor. Paterson, if they haven't provided the proper candidates, appoint no one and ask them to supply other names. The candidates are too old and all part of the present corrupt system. Have the guts, Governor, to tell them to go to hell and wait till they all resign in disgrace. Embarrass these scum until they can't stand the exposure.

Anonymous said...

The 'screening panel' should be called the 'screwing panel' as it screws all the people of New York, craps on what's right, and violates everything this county stands for as it attempts to improperly control law and order and due process by eliminating the will of the people, and of THE GOVERNOR, so certain people can control who's in charge so corrupt political favortism can continue. What a farce.

In fairness I must say that six of the seven names have 1 very important aspect which makes them HIGHLY QUALIFIED in my book: 6 of the 7 don't have the name Lippman!

Anonymous said...

I'd rather pick my ass than pick most of the names presented to the Governor. I agree that the single best person to lead an overdue period of change at OCA is Theodore T .Jones, Jr. I know lawyers and judges who have known him for 20 plus years, and they all say he's the best choice, and that he has always been a man of integrity.

Anonymous said...

Welcome to the wonderful world of OCA corruption, Mr. Governor. Not you, but fat cats, will REALLY decide who is the next chief judge.

Just like how we make believe we pick judges in this pathetic state. Just look at Nora Anderson, the next Surrogate Judge of NYC. Yes, she won the election, the voters decided. Only thing was no one ran against her!!!! I bet she was quite nervous on election night!?!?! Then we find out she was screwing around with money in the primary. Not the type of person I want handling dead people's money. Millions of people and the only choice is a Nora Anderson who screws around even before she's elected.

Do something Governor Paterson. The people have no choice, no voice. You got a little taste of that from the Judicial Nomination Committee. Not a pleasant taste in your mouth, is it?

Anonymous said...

Lippman is a bad choice.
The State is diverse Hispanics are the largest growing minority.
He should pick a Hispanic or an African American.
Paterson should send the message that N.Y is deiverse.
Paterson is correct the judges they picked lousey.
They picked those people to keep minoritys out.
Pick a younger minority. One that can be on the bench for years.

Anonymous said...

Anyone know the Real Deal about why that law firm where Pomerantz is from, Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, had to hire Frank Streng in that Scarpino case with Brooke Astor?

This blog talks about that connection in the Post on Brooke Astor but never heard it mentioned when Pomerantz was announced to be the new SDNY.

How would those problems be addressed if Pomerantz gets the nod and gets Confirmed by the US Senate?

I thought that State office for Judicial Campaign Ethics has a RULE which was adopted by Kaye or whatnot that said the Judge HAD to Recuse for 2 years from Any case that the Judge's Campaign Committee attorney was in?

So how come Scarpino never Recused from the Streng cases?

Are all of the Scarpino decisions in those cases Null and Void legally?

Whats up with Cleaning up this System Statewide?

Who is going to do it?

Anonymous said...

What is 60 the new 20?
I kinda like the ages of the group, since I am a proponent of reducing the judicial term...all of them... to 5 years.
That would be about right for the above position, with those recommended.
So what Kaye did to terrorize and deem unrecognizable, the NY court system and our state in general, could have well been blocked from happening, if she was booted after 5 yrs.
You need 16 yrs to really disrupt an entity of OCA'S magnitude, that has been given such unconscionable financial freedom and a person with Kaye's defects, and their are many more in the system, could greedily run with it to create, our now living hell!
Give it to one of the above, except Johnnie Lipppman, and let's start term limits.
Any court corruption is going to be addressed and forced by the PUBLIC, before any government agency gets involved, as you have seen so far...NO ONE HAS THE BALLS TO ATTACK OCA, even though it is their job....FBI!

Anonymous said...

Dave knew who was on the list 3 weeks ago. He wasn't happy then, and he ain't happy now. But watch, Paterson's one smart cookie.....

Anonymous said...

Paterson should be worry about how many of these judges have been involved in covering up child porn. Good thing Judge John K. McGuirk from Orange County is not running in this rat race he does cover up child porn.

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