Monday, November 21, 2011

UMD Law Dean to O'Malley: STFU!

Law clinic responds to O'Malley
Back off, because you don't know the whole story.

That's the essential message conveyed by the dean of the University of Maryland's law school in her response to a letter from Gov. Martin O'Malley, in which he expressed dismay about the school's involvement in litigation between an environmental advocacy group and a Berlin farm.

Students with the school's Environmental Law Clinic are representing Waterkeeper Alliance in legal action against farmers Alan and Kristin Hudson. The suit alleges the poultry farmers allowed chicken waste to get into a waterway that ultimately feeds into the Chesapeake Bay.

"I am concerned ... that you were not adequately briefed before preparing this letter," Dean Phoebe Haddon said in the one-page response. "I am uneasy about your decision to express in a letter -- that has now become public -- your opinion directly on the merits of a matter currently in active litigation."
Last week I reported on the reaction of O'Malley to the University's Law clinic siding with the Waterkeeper Alliance against the family farm.  Regardless of the merits of the suit, I'm very uncomfortable with the State of Maryland's University Law School throwing it's financial and legal strength behind one of two private sides in suit.  The fact that Law School clinics tend to take on only left wing causes only adds to that discomfort.

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