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May 11, 2005


ali nathan

Thanks for the report. The Federal Defender who argued for Irons is Ann McClintock from Sacramento.

SF Attorney

sure. She was really well prepared and very persuasive in her argument.

Gene Moran

Was the attack on the AEDPA total, or was it to one provision?

SF Attorney

Good question. I have not seen the briefs, but the defense argument at the hearing was pretty general. It should become apparent from the opinion.


It's a major element of the AEDPA under challenge. Here (thanks to How Appealling) is the question the two judges on the panel asked counsel to address:

"At oral argument, the parties should be prepared to give an indication of their views regarding the question whether the standards that Congress has set forth in the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 ("AEDPA") -- under which we may not grant habeas relief unless the state court decision was "contrary to, or involved an unreasonable application of, clearly established Federal law, as determined by the Supreme Court of the United States," 28 U.S.C. sec. 2254(d)(1) -- are constitutional in light of Marbury v. Madison, 5 U.S. (1 Cranch) 137 (1803), and City of Boerne v. Flores, 521 U.S. 507, 536 (1997). Specifically, the parties should be prepared to give an indication of their views as to whether AEDPA unconstitutionally prescribes the sources of law that the Judicial Branch must use in exercising its jurisdiction and whether under the separation of powers doctrine this court should decline to apply the AEDPA standards in this case. See id."

There's more worth reading on the SCOTUS blog, here:


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