Friday, December 10, 2010
I wasn't paying attention. I figured he'd be around forever. This piece on the Delaware Grapevine blog reminds that Vice Chancellor Strine's 12 year term on the Chancery Court recently expired:
His 12-year term expired Nov. 9. A judge is allowed by the state constitution to stay on for another 60 days but emphatically no longer. "In no event," the constitution says.
Strine would be out three days before the General Assembly normally would be back in. The constitution has a remedy. It instructs the governor to summon the Senate to a special session, so that is what Jack Markell, the Democratic governor, did.
A constitution can be so inconvenient.
The senate will be meeting on December 14. Strine's reappointment will be one of the first things on the agenda. Though before dealing with Strine, there is apparently a coup going on with respect to senate leadership. I'll leave that to the Delaware politicos. With all the turmoil, is Strine in jeopardy?
... Strine is expected to glide into his next term. This is not what happened when he was last nominated in 1998 by Tom Carper, the Democratic governor now in the U.S. Senate.
At the time, Strine was the 34-year-old counsel to Carper. Both then and today, Strine was known for his braininess, demolishing wit and little compunction about sandpapering others, no matter if they were state senators with the power of advice and consent or million-dollar lawyers in his courtroom.
Tom Sharp, a Democratic senator when Strine was first considered for the bench, told him, "Maybe the problem is some of us have gotten to know you very well."
We'll check in next Wednesday to make sure Strine is still there!