Affirming President Obama’s “Empathy Standard” for Judicial Selections

Below is a great article highlighting some of the poor decisions handed down by President Obama’s judicial appointees.  My own experience has affirmed this as well, particularly in the area of my defense of law enforcement officers claiming “qualified immunity” from excessive force claims under 42 U.S.C. 1983; the “objectively reasonable” standard applicable to the exercise by law enforcement officers of their discretion to perform their jobs and effect arrests, while at the same time protecting themselves and their fellow officers.  The original goal and purpose of immunity is to protect law enforcement officers from senseless and frivolous litigation, not just liability.  This had been established by a long-line of United States Supreme Court case law and it is a fundamental cornerstone to the principles of immunity granted to government officials, especially law enforcement officers, the latter of whom must go about performing their jobs often in tense and uncertain situations, where the very choice to use deadly force or not carries with it the threat to their own lives and to that of their fellow officers and the public.

Yet, now the doctrine has been disintegrated by the scourge of relativistic analysis.  No longer is the standard “objective reasonableness”, but rather, subjective relativism, inviting de facto ignorance to the factual underpinnings of an officer’s decision to use force.

So much so has the doctrine been diluted that a plaintiff’s bare statements, which are contrary to the balance of the trial court record, are sufficient to warrant a full-blown trial against the officer accused of violating the plaintiff’s constitutional rights.  This, even in light of facts proving that deadly force was the only and last means of subduing suspects threatening to inflict lethal force on the officers and was therefore, warranted.

Here is the article.

The Obama Judicial Record – By William J. Haun – Bench Memos – National Review Online.

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