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June 14, 2013

Lots of reasonable debate over the guidelines and reasonable review from Second Circuit judges

With thanks to the readers who alerted me, I wanted to alert everyone else to todays Second Circuit opinion in US v. Ingram, No. 12-1058 (2d Cir. June 14, 2013) (available here).  The per curiam opinion, which affirms a below guideline drug sentence, is not at all notable (and runs only 3 pages). 

But the concurring opinions are both must reads: the first is by Judge Calabresi and runs 14 pages, the second is by Judge Raggi and runs 17 pages to explain why she thinks the prior 14 pages are all washed up.   As a reader put it, the two Second Circuit jurists here "have at it on various psychological, philosophical, and practical matters concerning sentencing under the Guidelines."

June 14, 2013 at 12:18 PM | Permalink


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Judge Raggi dismantles Judge Calabresi diplomatically but unmercifully. Her analysis leaves so little standing of Judge Calabresi's concurrence that I have to wonder why he wanted to file it at all.

Perhaps Calabresi would have thought the better of it if he had had the services of one of his clerks from the '94-'95 Term.

Posted by: Bill Otis | Jun 14, 2013 3:05:09 PM

Raggi's concurrence is fine, but "diplomatic" isn't exactly the word that comes to mind. ("Here, we proceed by published opinion because our colleague, Judge Calabresi, wishes to file a concurring opinion discoursing on various topics...." Ouch.)

Posted by: Michael Drake | Jun 19, 2013 4:14:19 PM

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