Friday, November 04, 2005
Judge Alito: Ethically Challenged: Bush, Republicans and the "Family Values" crowd love him.
Maharaj, 50, discovered Alito's ownership of Vanguard shares in 2002 when she requested his financial disclosure forms after he ruled against her appeal . . . ''I just started seeing Vanguard after Vanguard, and I almost fell to the floor," she said in an interview at the Jamaica Plain home she shares with a friend after losing her own home in the course of the prolonged litigation. ''I just couldn't believe that it could be so blatant."
In 1990, when Alito was seeking US Senate approval for his nomination to be a circuit judge, he said in written answers to a questionnaire that he would disqualify himself from ''any cases involving the Vanguard companies."
After Alito ruled in Vanguard's favor in the Maharaj case, he complained about her efforts to vacate his decision and remove him from the case, writing to the chief administrative judge of the federal appeals court on which he sat in 2003: ''I do not believe that I am required to disqualify myself based on my ownership of the mutual fund shares."
. . . .
In the 1990 questionnaire, Alito was asked how he would resolve potential conflicts of interest. He responded: I do not believe that conflicts of interest relating to my financial interests are likely to arise. I would, however, disqualify myself from any cases involving the Vanguard companies."
Model Code of Judicial Conduct
A JUDGE SHALL AVOID IMPROPRIETY AND THE APPEARANCE OF IMPROPRIETY IN ALL OF THE JUDGE’S ACTIVITIES