SCOTUSblog is live-blogging the hearings as we speak (or, I should say, type). That's something I'd love to be able to do for the Mervyn's and Branick arguments next year. However, the technical hurdles (not to mention the Court's rule against electronic devices in the courtroom) might make it impossible.
Through the grapevine, I received the following email, which originated from a law professor in the affected area:
I know your hearts, in particular, are for lawyers. Think of this...
5,000 - 6,000 lawyers (1/3 of the lawyers in Louisiana) have lost their offices, their libraries, their computers with all information thereon, their client files - possibly their clients, as one attorney who e-mailed me noted. As I mentioned before, they are scattered from Florida to Arizona and have nothing to return to. Their children's schools are gone and, optimistically, the school systems in 8 parishes/counties won't be re-opened until after December. They must re-locate their lives.
Our state supreme court is under some water - with all appellate files and evidence folders/boxes along with it. The 5th Circuit Court of Appeals building is under some water - with the same effect. Right now there may only be 3-4 feet of standing water but, if you think about it, most files are kept in the basements or lower floors of courthouses. What effect will that have on the lives of citizens and lawyers throughout this state and this area of the country? And on the law?
This post is way off-topic, but the Court of Appeal (Third Appellate District in Sacramento) has just today invalidated Proposition 80 and declared that it will not appear on the ballot for the November 2005 special election. Independent Energy Producers Assn. v. MacPherson, ___ Cal.App.4th ___ (July 22, 2005). I've heard about at least one other court challenge to one of the initiatives, so I wonder how this bodes for the special election generally. UPDATE: I just learned that yesterday, a Sacramento County Superior Court judge threw Proposition 77 (the redistricting measure) off the ballot as well. Much more on that development at SoCalLawBlog. UPDATE: On July 27, the Supreme Court granted review and ordered Proposition 80 back on the ballot. Again, SoCalLawBlog has more.