New Appointment Holds Clues to Brownback Supreme Court Plan

"Last week, Kathryn Gardner was the second judge confirmed under Kansas’s new method of selecting appellate court judges, and her confirmation gives the state a look at the system Gov. Sam Brownback wants to use for choosing state supreme court justices.

...

There is absolutely nothing wrong with judges making decisions that reflect the political views held by elected officials, according to Kansas University law professor Steve Ware.

Scholars’ Circle-Trans-Pacific-Trade-Partnership-Status

"We spend the hour exploring what could become the world’s largest trade agreement, the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). What could it mean for the countries that are considering signing onto it? Can it be democratic, humanitarian and transparent?

Raj Bhala is the Associate Dean for International and Comparative Law and Rice Distinguished Professor at The University of Kansas School of Law. He is the author of International Trade Law: Interdisciplinary Theory and Practice Documents Supplement and Trade, Development, and Social Justice.

Penn Law alum and ITC Commissioner gives keynote at PIPG symposium on design patents

"On March 19, the Penn Intellectual Property Group featured a symposium on design patents and the convergence of existing intellectual property regimes. The event kicked off with keynote speaker Commissioner F. Scott Kieff L’94 of the U.S. International Trade Commission and featured a panel discussion about the past and future of design patents.

. . . 

Kansas Schools Fight Plays Out Against Backdrop of Debate on Judiciary

"This state’s judicial and legislative branches are on course for a constitutional clash after a state appellate court suggested that it might block a school financing plan that lawmakers passed.

The plan, championed by the conservative-dominated Legislature and the Republican governor, Sam Brownback, cut tens of millions of dollars in aid intended to close disparities between rich and poor districts.

Recent Kansas school finance actions raise several constitutional questions

"A Kansas University law professor said one result of the new school finance law passed by the Legislature this week could be to halt the ongoing lawsuit over school funding and force the plaintiffs to start over with a new case.

...

But he said another possibility is that the battle between the Legislature and the courts could lead to the kind of constitutional crisis that occurred in 2005, when lawmakers initially refused to comply with a Supreme Court order to increase school funding, and the court threatened to close public schools until the Legislature did comply.

An Error in Wisconsin

"While we’re on the topic of moral attention: A study just published by the American Psychological Association found that universities underreport sexual-assault complaints on their campuses when they’re not being watched by the U.S. Department of Education, although they report complaints accurately during audits by federal officials. 'The result is students at many universities continue to be attacked and victimized,' writes the study’s author, Corey Rayburn Yung, a law professor at the University of Kansas, 'and punishment isn’t meted out to the rapists and sexual assaulters.'"

Study Shows Colleges Continue to Underreport Sexual Assault

"Colleges and universities are likely to underreport or downplay the number of sex crimes on campus unless under federal scrutiny, according to a new study published in the journal Psychology, Public Policy, and Law.

The study, which looked at four-year schools with at least 10,000 students between the years of 2001 and 2012, found that when the Department of Education audits schools for possible Clery Act violations, sexual assault reports rise by approximately 44%. After the audit, reporting rates fall back to pre-audit levels, the New York Times reports.

Study: University sexual assault reports differ greatly when under investigation

"Higher education institutions are required by law to report campus crimes. Under the Clery Act, crime rates should be made public. While many universities and colleges do report their criminal cases, a new study found that when it comes to sexual assault, an overwhelming amount of schools report very different rates when they are under federal investigation, oppose to when they are not under the microscope.

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