Women and the Wisconsin Supreme Court

Multiple locations on the Wisconsin court system’s website introduce visitors to the moving story of Lavinia Goodell.[1]  In 1875, after she had begun practicing law in Rock County the previous year, Goodell sought permission from the Wisconsin Supreme Court to argue a case in that forum.  A unanimous three-justice panel denied her petition in an opinion written by Chief Justice Edward Ryan in 1876.  Although he deemed women fit for a variety of functions, Justice Ryan concluded that “the profession of law is surely not one of these.”  After all, he explained, “the peculiar qualities of womanhood” gave rise to a “tender susceptibility,” “emotional impulses,” and a “subordination of hard reason to sympathetic feeling,” among other traits unsuitable in the legal profession.  Instead, nature had prepared women “for the bearing and nurture of the children of our race and for the custody for the homes of the world …”  Activities contrary to the “sacred duties of their sex, as is the profession of law, are departures from the order of nature; and when voluntary, treason against it.”[Continue Reading…]

Fantasy League Update

Today’s decision in Peggy Z. Coyne v. Scott Walker brought one point to the Waivers (from the amicus brief filed by Boardman & Clark), leaving them a single point back of the second-place Citations.

Fantasy League Update

The release of St. Croix County Department of Health and Human Services v. Michael D. brought the Office of the State Public Defender five points for a brief and oral argument, thereby nudging the Gavels into first place, just two points ahead of the … [Continue reading]

Wisconsin Supreme Court Statistics, 1991-1992

These tables are derived from information contained in 70 Wisconsin Supreme Court decisions filed between September 1, 1991, and August 31, 1992.  The total of 70 decisions does not include rulings arising from such undertakings as (1) disciplinary … [Continue reading]

Fantasy League Update

On the strength of an amicus brief filed in Walworth State Bank v. Abbey Springs Condominium Association, Boardman & Clark picked up one point for the Waivers, now only two points behind the Citations at the top of the league’s standings. … [Continue reading]

Is the Court of Appeals Responsible for the Supreme Court’s Per Curiam Diet?

Table 1--Percentage of SCOW cases that were per curiam at C of A

Following a recent post’s observation that an unusually large share of cases coming before the supreme court during the current term are per curiam decisions from the court of appeals, a reader wondered if a significantly higher percentage of all … [Continue reading]

Fantasy League Update

The decision in State v. Lagrone today brought five points (for a brief and oral argument) to the Gavels of the Office of the Public Defender, pulling them even with the Waivers and only three points back of the league-leading Citations. … [Continue reading]

Fantasy League Update

As a result of its participation in Yasmine Clark v. American Cyanamid Company—a brief, no oral argument, and a 3-3 outcome—Quarles & Brady picked up four points and pulled its team (the Waivers) to within three points of the league-leading … [Continue reading]

Wisconsin Supreme Court Statistics, 1992-1993

These tables are derived from information contained in 87 Wisconsin Supreme Court decisions filed between September 1, 1992, and August 31, 1993.  The total of 87 decisions does not include rulings arising from such undertakings as (1) disciplinary … [Continue reading]

Fantasy League Update

Over the past two weeks, the court has released only one decision, and it did not involve any of the law firms in the league.  Hence, no change in the standings. … [Continue reading]