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More argument on Jordan v. Reed appeal costs

Normally a birther lawsuit is gobbledygook, legal nonsense, crazy logic, and worthy of universal condemnation; this includes those from a certain birther attorney. It was also the case with Linda Jordan’s pro se complaint and appeal in the case of Jordan v. Reed. The court rightly dismissed the suit, upheld on appeal, and the Washington Secretary of State rightly requested and was granted costs for defending a frivolous appeal, costs of nearly $13,000.

However, the amount awarded the State was not the actual cost of the defense but rather a market rate times the number of hours. The award was about 3 times the actual expense. Some think this is a windfall for the State. True or not, there is another windfall in this story and that is the intervention of a real lawyer, a former Supreme Court of Washington justice Richard B. Sanders, arguing that the costs awarded by the court were excessive.

The argument is whether the costs are punitive or compensatory, and what the standard is for computing the costs. My article on the State’s brief is “Washington AG makes strong case for sanctions.” I am not a lawyer, so I won’t give an opinion, but here’s something better than you’ve probably ever seen in a birther lawsuit:

Jordan v Reed – Appellant Reply to Motion to Modify/DoS – WA Obama Ballot Challenge – 2/28/2013 by ObamaRelease YourRecords

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9 Responses to More argument on Jordan v. Reed appeal costs

  1. avatar
    ZixiOfIx March 4, 2013 at 5:30 pm #

    Here we have a distinguished judge and talented attorney who clearly understands the law and knows how to make a proper legal argument. Additionally, he is unafraid to challenge the state which probably pays for at least part of his retirement.

    That Justice Sanders is focusing solely on the monetary fine and not the underlying birther issue should tell birthers all they need to know and should end the birther falderal once and for all.

    It almost certainly won’t end the nonsense, but it should.

  2. avatar
    donna March 4, 2013 at 6:22 pm #

    ZixiOfIx: It almost certainly won’t end the nonsense, but it should.

    it won’t because they are led to believe this is still about Obama Identity Fraud

    and they only read headlines and not the pleadings

    ORYR: Motion Filed: Washington State Busted Trying To Swindle Obama Identity Fraud Challenger

    if they receive a downward modification, they will cheer “we won, we won, this proves Obama Identity Fraud and that “he” was busted for swindling”

    no where will it be mentioned Judge Robertson suggested Jordan should have known better and that the case was brought for improper purposes:

    … all the so-called evidence offered by plaintiff has been in the blogosphere for years, in one form or another, so too has all the law rejecting plaintiffs allegations. I can conceive of no reason why this lawsuit was brought, except to join the chorus of noise in that blogosphere. The case is dismissed.

    http://www.obamaconspiracy.org/2013/01/jordan-docked-12675-for-filing-frivolous-appeal/

  3. avatar
    Rickey March 4, 2013 at 7:06 pm #

    The commenters are The Fogbow are less impressed with Sanders’ brief. One calls it “pathetic.”

    http://www.thefogbow.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=88&t=8198&start=350

  4. avatar
    W. Kevin Vicklund March 4, 2013 at 9:37 pm #

    While this is certainly much more lucid and cogent than any birther filing I’ve had the disfortune to read, it does have a major flaw. Although it may sound like it, “actual fees expended” does not refer to the actual dollar amount. Rather, it is in reference to the portion of fees billable to dealing with sanctionable conduct.

    It often happens that only part of a lawsuit involves sanctionable conduct. R.11 can only recover fees expended dealing with that conduct. The cases referenced are requiring the court to specify 1) the specific misconduct, and 2) the fees associated with addressing that misconduct. Since these are private attorneys, there was no need to address the issue of government fees.

    It is also of note that the cases cited show that it is necessary to warn as soon as possible that sanctions will be sought. Failure to do so in a timely manner will preclude sanctions. So there goes John’s fantasy.

    I will note that had the ex-judge properly interpreted those cases, he would have had a decent case for eliminating some of the fees. This is because the attorney billed for some actions not specifically covered by the order, or handled by the court sua sponte. Frankly, I’m astonished that the ex-judge didn’t raise the issue of these additional fees. It would not have hurt his theory, and could have reduced his client’s sanctions even further. The court might still exclude these additional fees, but the probability is drastically reduced now.

  5. avatar
    W. Kevin Vicklund March 4, 2013 at 10:19 pm #

    Clarification: the court can impose sanctions sua sponte without requiring a motion, but an untimely motion for sanctions will be denied.

  6. avatar
    aesthetocyst March 4, 2013 at 10:36 pm #

    How was the $3412.40 figure estasblished / disclosed …. if it indeed was? Shouldn’t teh motion be accompanied by documentation regarding this amount? Or has it become general knowledge. If it is public knowledge, I’d expect at least a citation of it.

    Ah, I see, he notes his opinion that $3412.40 is a maximum figure, based on a $65/hr rate … which he says was disclosed …. but again, where? And how were the # of hours determined?

    I’m not following this closely (obviously!) … the motion clearly isn’t self-contained.

  7. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy March 4, 2013 at 11:14 pm #

    This earlier filing fills in the details. The actual billing was disclosed in a phone conversation recounted therein.

    http://www.scribd.com/doc/124567382/Jordan-v-Reed-Appellant-Motion-to-Modify

    I don’t think the number of hours was ever in dispute, being provided by the AG in the original request for costs.

    aesthetocyst:
    How was the $3412.40 figure established / disclosed …. if it indeed was? Shouldn’t the motion be accompanied by documentation regarding this amount? Or has it become general knowledge. If it is public knowledge, I’d expect at least a citation of it.

    Ah, I see, he notes his opinion that $3412.40 is a maximum figure, based on a $65/hr rate … which he says was disclosed …. but again, where? And how were the # of hours determined?

    I’m not following this closely (obviously!) … the motion clearly isn’t self-contained.

  8. avatar
    The Magic M March 6, 2013 at 7:24 am #

    Consideration date set:

    http://de.scribd.com/doc/128838353/Jordan-v-Reed-WA-Supreme-Court-Letter-Motion-to-Modify-Set-for-Consideration-3-4-2013

    Does the decision not to have a hearing foreshadow that the motion will very likely be denied?

  9. avatar
    Kiwiwriter March 6, 2013 at 10:20 pm #

    I read this brief, and could only think of the “Bring Out Your Dead” scene in “Monty Python and the Holy Grail.”