The Not So Innocent Man, Not So Much Appeal

We’ve been looking off and on for a reaction to Mississippi trial lawyer Dickie Scruggs’ guilty plea from John Grisham, the suspense author, lawyer and friend to Scruggs and the plaintiff’s bar. Nothing on his website we see, nothing immediate from searching Google News, and the Wall Street Journal’s law blog last talked to him on the subject in December, when Grisham said:

When you know Dickie and how successful he has been you could not believe he would be involved in such a boneheaded bribery scam that is not in the least bit sophisticated. I don’t believe it. I hope it’s all proven to be wrong.

Hopes dashed.

We were prompted to make another look by a column in today’s Wall Street Journal on the preference of Grisham and his compadres with the plaintiff’s bar for unelected judges, aka “merit selection” via a supposedly unbiased commission. From “Grisham’s Judicial Appeal”:

Fans of the judicial commission approach claim that it removes the selection process from the hands of “special interests.” At the end of the day, however, the problem isn’t the power of business groups, like the fictional chemical company in his novel. Trial lawyers in each state are the ones with the financial and organization incentive to work year-in and year-out to shape the local judiciary to their liking.

Which is another thing we don’t see Grisham commenting on.

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