Saturday, July 31, 2010

Federal judge in Cuccinelli's health care challenge has potential conflict of interest

Judge Henry E. Hudson isn't just a federal judge, he's also one of Ken Cuccinelli's campaign advisers: isn't that convenient for Ken Cuccinelli
The federal judge set to issue one of the first decisions on the Obama administration's health care law has financial ties to both the attorney general who is challenging the law and to a powerhouse conservative law firm whose clients include prominent Republican officials and critics of reform.

This week, District Court Judge Henry E. Hudson is likely to render a procedural verdict on the Virginia Attorney General's lawsuit which contends that the federal health care overhaul is unconstitutional. The Bush appointee has been hearing oral arguments in his Richmond courtroom dating back to March. His verdict could serve as an important template for more than a dozen other states following Virginia's lead.

But with power comes scrutiny. And as judgment day approaches, a Democratic source sends over judicial disclosure forms Hudson filed that could raise questions about his impartiality. From 2003 through 2008, Hudson has been receiving "dividends" from Campaign Solutions Inc., among other investments. In 2008, he reported income of between $5,000 and $15,000 from the firm. (Data from 2009 was not available at the Judicial Watch database.)
I'm beginning to think that Congress may need to pass new conflict of interest legislation to prevent federal judges from ruling on cases where they have financial interests at stake or financial ties to one or more of the parties to the litigation they are involved with.

Read the entire article, along with a response from the company involved in the conflict of interest, at the Huffington Post.

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