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Powers & Santola's judicial generosity

"Supreme Court Appellate Justice Anthony J. Carpinello's re-election campaign accepted a $10,000 gift in May from an Albany law firm that had recently appeared before him in court to argue a medical malpractice appeal. Three months after the contribution, which was disclosed in his campaign's filings with the State Board of Elections, Carpinello cast a deciding vote in a 3-2 decision on the case, Caruso v. Northeast Emergency Medical Associates. He also wrote the majority opinion that could allow the firm, Powers & Santola, to collect as much as $200,000 in fees. The judge claims he was unaware of the contribution." Powers, a former president of the state trial lawyers' association, denies any impropriety and says "all of the solicitations from his firm were initiated by the judges' political committees -- which often regard the firm and its renowned political generosity as 'low-hanging fruit' for their harvests of campaign cash." (Mark Lagerkvist, "System Is the Crime", Judicial Reports, Oct. 29). Eric Turkewitz also comments.

P.S. And there's a Part Two that examines more broadly "the tangle of rules governing the conflict-ridden financial relationships between lawyers and judges" (via Obbie/LawBeat).

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Rafael Mangual
Project Manager,
Legal Policy

Manhattan Institute


Published by the Manhattan Institute

The Manhattan Insitute's Center for Legal Policy.