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Eye On Boise

First annual Darrington Lecture on Law and Government is today in the Capitol

Today is the first Denton Darrington Lecture on Law and Government, to be delivered at 4 p.m. in the Lincoln Auditorium featuring Chief Judge Emeritus J. Clifford Wallace of the 9th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals. It’s free and open to the public, and also will be streamed online; you can watch live here.

Prior to the lecture, Woodland met with reporters, along with Idaho Supreme Court Chief Justice Roger Burdick and 9th Circuit Judges N. Randy Smith and Stephen S. Trott. Burdick said the annual lecture honors longtime Senate Judiciary Chairman Darrington, R-Declo, who is here for today’s lecture, and who Burdick said “has been a strong supporter of the courts,” as well as an emblem of “statesmanship” in the Legislature. “He coalesced viewpoints from all three branches of government,” Burdick said. With the annual lecture, Burdick said, “We hope to keep up that spirit.”

Smith said, “This will be a great opportunity for us to be educationally stimulated and give us a chance to think about life that we don’t do on a regular basis.” Today’s lecture is entitled, “What can we learn from the political party that lost the adoption of the Constitution election?” It’s about the “Anti-Federalists,” who opposed ratification of the U.S. Constitution during the 1780s, and who put forth some critiques of the Constitution that Wallace says are of continuing relevance today. The lecture is sponsored by the University of Idaho College of Law, the Idaho Supreme Court, and the Idaho State Bar and Law Foundation.

Quizzed about when Idaho might see cameras allowed in federal district courtrooms in Idaho, the three federal appeals judges said they’re wary of the concept, due to concerns over people changing their testimony to play to the cameras. Burdick, however, said he’d “dissent.” Idaho allows cameras in its courtrooms with the judge’s consent, and allows them at Supreme Court hearings. Burdick said when he was an Idaho district judge for 12 years, he always granted requests for cameras in the courtroom. “I saw no difference at all,” he said.

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Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.

Named best state-based political blog in Idaho for 2013 by The Fix

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