Bloomberg Law
Feb. 1, 2022, 9:45 AM

Judicial Opinion Barbs Reflect Political Divisions, Twitter Era

Madison Alder
Madison Alder

Ninth Circuit Judge Lawrence VanDyke’s writings are again getting attention as he crafted a majority opinion and an alternative attached as a concurrence he said liberal colleagues could adopt en banc in the Second Amendment case. “You’re welcome,” he added, in a sarcastic aside.

To some court watchers, it’s just the latest example of polarized politics spilling into judicial opinions that are aimed at an audience far beyond the courthouse. The writings come as a new generation of judges is adopting a Twitter-like vernacular in their writing.

“There is a sort of performance art going on especially in the circuit ...

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