Prof. Tiefer: New Round of House Investigations Expected in Wake of Anticipated ‘Blue Wave’

Special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation has been noticeably absent from campaign ads and debates in advance of the Nov. 6 mid-term elections. But this election is expected to have a big impact on how the Mueller probe plays out in its final stages, former Congressional staffers and legal experts told VICE News.

Professor Charles Tiefer

Professor Charles Tiefer

If Democrats win control of the House, they are expected to quickly begin applying pressure to President Trump, experts said. One avenue might be to recap the Mueller probe’s greatest hits for the public, by subpoenaing his witnesses and cooperators — people like Manafort and Cohen — for fresh rounds of open testimony before Congress.

“All these main targets, or key witnesses, in the Mueller investigation, can be made to testify before House committees,” said Charles Tiefer, a professor at the University of Baltimore School of Law and former special deputy chief counsel for the House Iran-Contra Committee’s investigation during the Reagan era. “And House Democrats will have every reason to do that.”

Read the full story here.

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School of Law to Host Nov. 2 Candidates’ Debate for Maryland Attorney General

The University of Baltimore School of Law will host a debate between the two candidates for Maryland Attorney General on Friday, Nov. 2 at 7 p.m. in the Learning Commons Town Hall, 1415 Maryland Ave. in Baltimore.

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Brian Frosh

Incumbent Attorney General Brian Frosh and attorney general candidate Craig Wolf are scheduled to participate. UB School of Law Dean Ronald Weich will serve as moderator. The event is free and open to the public.

CraigWolf

Craig Wolf

The event at the University of Baltimore will be the second of two candidate forums prior to the general election on Nov. 6.

The forum will follow a traditional format, with both candidates presenting opening statements then responding to questions from the moderator. The moderator will also solicit a limited number of questions from the audience.

 

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Screening of ‘The Sentence’ and Panel Discussion on Nov. 5 Look at Mandatory Minimum Sentences

First-time filmmaker Rudy Valdez’s The Sentence tells the story of his sister Cindy Shank, a mother of three who received a 15-year mandatory sentence for conspiracy charges related to her deceased ex-boyfriend’s crimes. The documentary offers a searing look at the consequences of mandatory minimum sentencing and received critical acclaim when it premiered at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival.

Professor David Jaros.

Professor David Jaros.

The University of Baltimore School of Law will present this HBO documentary on Monday, Nov. 5 at 6 p.m., followed by a panel discussion on the history of mandatory sentencing and its impact throughout the country and in Maryland. The panelists also will discuss the role of Maryland’s Felony Murder Statute in unjust sentences, and efforts to reform it in the upcoming legislative session in Annapolis.

The panel will include UB School of Law Professor David Jaros; Lila Meadows, clinical fellow in the school’s Juvenile Justice Project, and Sharon Blount, sister of a JJP clinic client who is serving a life sentence. The event is sponsored by UB’s Juvenile Justice Project, the UB Criminal Law Association, the Justice Policy Institute, Fusion Partnerships and Baltimore Harm Reduction Coalition.

RSVP to the event here.

 

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Prof. Emeritus Byron Warnken Receives Icon Honors Award from The Daily Record

Professor Emeritus Byron L. Warnken, who retired earlier this year after 45 years at the University of Baltimore School of Law, has been chosen to receive an Icon Honors award from The Daily Record. He will join 29 other notable Maryland business leaders at a December event recognizing them for “their notable success and demonstration of strong leadership both within and outside of their chosen field,” according to the newspaper.

Byron_0026Prof. Warnken first became part of the law school community in 1973, when he began his first year as a student. Soon after earning his Juris Doctor degree in 1977, he was named an adjunct law professor, and later a tenure-track professor. A master of the Socratic method, Prof. Warnken taught criminal law for many years and authored a three-volume work, Maryland’s Criminal Procedure.

Prof. Warnken helped develop programs to help diversify the student body and give students meaningful externship opportunities, and he built an impressive Moot Court program. He was also widely known for his many appearances on television news shows, explaining intricacies of high-profile cases that captured the public eye.

Congratulations, Prof. Warnken! We can’t think of anyone more deserving of this honor.

 

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Law Forum Symposium Looks at Hot Topics in Trusts and Estates Litigation

The University of Baltimore School of Law’s Law Forum will present its annual symposium, Trusts and Estates: Trust Us, It’s Important, from 4 to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 13. The conversation will explore hot topics in trusts and estates litigation in Maryland.

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Del. Kathleen Dumais, D-Montgomery

The event will begin with a presentation from the chairman of the Maryland Board of Law Examiners, Jonathan Azrael, regarding Maryland’s transition to the Uniform Bar Exam in July 2019.

Following the presentation, there will be a panel led by Professor Angela Vallario with the following panelists:

  • Frederick R. Franke Jr., of Franke, Sessions & Beckett LLC
  • Del.  Kathleen Dumais, D-Montgomery
  • Hon. Athena Malloy Groves – Orphans’ Court for Prince George’s County

A reception will follow the panel.

 

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Prof. Wehle on the Consequences of One-Party Rule

In an opinion piece published in the Oct. 24 issue of The Hill, Professor Kim Wehle warns of the consequences of one-party rule, which include “a multi-generational choke hold on constitutional interpretation and related social and fiscal policy — especially if Democrats fail to win a majority of one or both chambers of Congress next month.”

kim wehleNoting that the Senate has confirmed 26 of President Trump’s appointments to the U.S Courts of Appeals, the long-term impact of these conservative — and relatively young — judges cannot be overstated. Gerrymandering and the absence of term limits for members of Congress only strengthen the current Republican stranglehold on the three branches of government.

The framers of the Constitution, Prof. Wehle wrote, “opted for a republic because they worried about the inevitable rise of ‘factions’ in America — ideologically motivated subgroups that are inclined to believe misinformation in service of ‘some common impulse of passion, or of interest, adversed to the rights of other citizens, or to the permanent and aggregate interests of the community,’ as James Madison aptly put it.

“Today,” she continued, “factions are on the rise, with a plethora of ‘fake news’ internet sites — many manufactured by foreign powers seeking to harm American democracy — and ‘bots,’ or robots, that spread lies through computer-generated social media accounts. As a result, a good portion of the American population is being scammed on a daily basis.”

She concludes: “Any intellectually honest debate about one-party rule produces one inviolate conclusion: that it’s better for everyone — regardless of political party — to have a functioning system of checks and balances, in which those in power face meaningful push-back from political opponents, and the ultimate power resides with the people. Without accountability, tyranny thrives.”

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Bronfein Family Law Clinic to Present Panel on Parentage and Third-Party Custody Rights

Nancy Polikoff

Prof. Nancy Polikoff of American University.

The Bronfein Family Law Clinic at University of Baltimore School of Law, Family Law Association, Outlaw, and FreeState Justice will present a panel on parentage and third-party custody rights on Thursday, Nov. 8 from 6 to 8 p.m. in the Angelos Law Center, 12th floor reading room.

Speakers include Professor Nancy Polikoff, American University, Washington College of Law; Jennifer Kent, Managing Attorney, FreeState Justice; LaTreisha Cox, former client of the FLC, and Steffani Langston and Taylor LoSchiavo, Ms. Cox’s former Family Law Clinic student attorneys.

The panel will include a discussion about the current state of the law and future areas for legal reform in this area. Refreshments will be provided.

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