Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Judicial Election Primer 2018- Nevada Supreme Court Seat 'C'- Cadish v. Tao

With early voting just a few weeks away, today is a great day to start looking at the races on the ballot this fall.  In light of their recent forum/debate [TNI], we thought why not start with the big ticket judicial race for Seat "C" on the Nevada Supreme Court:  Elissa Cadish or Jerry Tao

This is your opportunity to weigh in and let your fellow lawyers and community members know why they should pick one over the other. Please keep your comments informative and professional. This is not a thread for personal attacks, but rather a chance to explain why someone should be elected.

Who is your choice for this spot on the bench?

52 comments:

  1. Two nos here on Cadish.

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  2. Oh dear Lord. Get your popcorn ready.

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    1. It's like they want a fight. Might as well do a post about Voldemort.

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    2. Yes, if you do not support Cadish you are a troll. Nice.

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    3. No one is calling anyone a troll. I did see an earlier post about Cadish on facebook posts, endorsing attorneys who support her campaign. That is not kosher.

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    4. What date is the post?

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    5. I cut and posted the earlier post:

      This was a post from Elissa Cadish's facebook. She endorses certain lawyers. Please see below, not appropriate.

      Judge Elissa Cadish for Nevada Supreme Court - Seat C
      August 21 ·

      Had a great visit at the Reno office of Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie - Great group of attorneys...
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  3. Yes, get your popcorn ready for people saying they are voting no on Cadish. Understandable in so many ways.

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  4. Has anyone sent money to Tao? I have been hit up for cash by everyone and their brother EXCEPT Tao. The comments about Cadish are downright silly at this point.

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  5. . . . and the best reason to vote for Tao is . . . ?

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  6. I sent money to Tao. You have problem with anti-Cadish comments? Shocker!

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  7. Multiple yes's for Cadish.

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  8. I saw them debate, I am voting for Tao. I talked to the attorneys in the office I clerk for who appear in front of Cadish, one said they were supporting her, three said no.

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  9. I like Tao. He is smart. He is a good jurist. He applies the law and reviews the record.

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  10. Honest question: What do people have against Cadish? I have never had a case in her court. Is she unethical? Is she unintelligent? I have heard from other attorneys that Tao has a bias in favor of PI attorneys but don't have any personal experience with that either. Just curious if there is any substance to the Cadish bashing is keep seeking on this blog.

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    1. I have seen her get a few decisions wrong, sometimes in my favor, sometimes not. Overall she is better than 80% of the judges in the EDCR though, and I don't get the hate. I don't have a big problem with Tao either, but I can't imagine 20 page dissents and concurrences will speed things up at the NSC much.

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    2. I like Tao as a person. When they were on the District Court Bench together, Cadish was by far the superior District Court Judge. Tao's elevation to the Ct.App. was not based upon him being the best candidate. Understandable the thought which is that the best trial court judge does not always make the best appellate judge. With that said, Cadish is the sharper legal mind between the two of them.

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    3. There isn't. She's good.

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    4. There is. She is bad.

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  11. I have practiced in front of both of these judges at the district court level. In my opinion, both of them will be good on the Supreme Court and I'm okay with either of them getting elected. Both are fair and have good judicial temperament. I'm struggling to decide what tips the scale in favor of one over the other. Tao's prosecutor background is a little bit of a negative for me, but I think others may see it as a positive. While I know some fault Cadish for her JEA, I didn't ever have a problem with her judicial prowess because of that. Tao's ability as a jurist is probably wasted on the apparently pointless Court of Appeals, but I digress. Weighing all of this, I'm leaning towards Cadish... change my mind?

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    1. I love the posts about not voting for Cadish because of Tim. If anything, if you have a problem with him then you want her on the NVSC because attorneys and litigants don't interact with the individual justices. Everything is through AOC. That removes 99% of all future interactions with him. Problem solved.

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    2. She is his supervisor. She knows how he treats people. Tim and Cadish deserve one another. I am not going to vote for her to get rid of him. Tao is better.

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  12. In response to 10:03. Excellent question, but always very difficult to answer.

    If someone truly has had multiple appearances before a judge, and has prevailed on some rulings and not prevailed on others, they can perhaps provide a view which is measured and with a degree of objectivity.

    But with many of the anonymous bloggers, for all we know many of them may be cry babies who appeared just once or twice before the judge and lost a motion they feel they should have won. But without knowing the details of such motions, or the facts or issues involved, we can't know if a judge is bad simply because some anonymous malcontent lost some motion.

    But again, some of these bloggers may have had significant exposure to the judge in question, and have much more of a basis for their opinion than the cry baby who lost an isolated motion. Problem is, we will never know because the bloggers seldom bother offering the details or circumstances. They simply conclude that some judge is dreadful and needs to be booted from office.

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  13. Cadish and Tao are equal in my mind and experience. Both have good legal minds and are generally fair. I would rather appear in front of them than most judges. Even when they do not agree with my client's position they generally provide a reasoned decision, instead of "I was just too lazy to put the time in to read the briefs and think about the argument."

    However, I want to know about this Mary Kay Holthus running for Department 18. I really do not like Bailus as a judge, but I know nothing about Holthus. Any insights into her and her potential judicial style/demeanor?

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    1. That is a shit shoot for me. Who is Holthus' campaign manager? If it is Dave Thomas, that is a hell no for me.

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    2. Let's leave the Holthus/Bailus discussion for another day. I promise we will dedicate a whole post to them. Let's keep this one focused on Cadish/Tao.

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  14. I have appeared in front of both Tao and Cadish. More so in front of Cadish. I've won and lost in front of her. She always seemed prepared and her decisions were well-reasoned. I don't understand the random dissenters who usually don't cite any specifics as to why she is awful. I've met her in person multiple times at legal events and she was fine. Her JEA is a tool, but that's not a big deal in my mind. She's definitely one of the better judges on the EJDC.

    TAo also seemed prepared and made thoughtful decisions. I think Cadish is the better legal mind, but Tao would be find up on the Supreme Court as well. I would probably vote for Cadish, but both are good choices.

    I would love to here specifics as to why people so vociferously oppose her. I don't get it.

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  15. The average voter knows nothing about these people, so they will decide the race based on name recognition, or gender, or something of that sort. Legal ability is totally irrelevant to the election results.

    Instead, the election(like many elections) will be decided by something absurd like street signs, commercials, etc. To that point, Tao has a lot of street signs, while I have not seen any for Cadish yet. As we get closer to the election, we will see who has more commercials, mailers, etc.

    As to the other NSC race, Harter has his signs on every corner, while I have not yet seen anything for the incumbent.

    The kind of comments on this blog(the relative legal merits and abilities of each candidate) would be the focus if only attorneys were voting. But with the general public voting, name recognition may carry the day(and name recognition is established via signs, commercials, mailers, etc.)

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    1. This is really the only comment that needs to be on the page, unfortunately.

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    2. Surprised you have not seen Cadish's signs. She had about 3 billboards going northbound on the I-15 the other day.

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  16. Tao is already an appellate judge. He is more qualified than Cadish.

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    1. I do not find this argument persuasive. A couple years' experience in a single position does not make a person more qualified for a different position. Plus if you believe that then no incumbent should ever lose a race.

      If you want to talk experience, Cadish has been a member of the bar for 10 more years than Tao, has been a judge for 4 years longer, and went to a better law school.

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    2. Tao has been both a trial judge and appellate judge. Cadish has not. I am impressed with your knowledge of Cadish's very personal facts about her career. I still support Tao. Plus, I am tired of Cadish's elitism of oh, I went to Penn. No one gives a damn.

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    3. Cadish is older than him, who cares if she has been licensed longer? Get the Stretch Armstrong out.

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    4. 2:10 here. I agree that the law school each judge attended is far down the list of most important factors. I mean, I didn't go to an elite law school and I'm awesome. I was just trying to make a point that there are plenty of other factors that lean toward Cadish being more qualified and the "already an appellate judge" argument is pretty weak.

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  17. Law school, law schmool, show me one study that says it corresponds to success when familial relationships removed e.g., Yale good ol boy network

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    1. Tao went to George Washington Law School. That is a good school. What is your point, that she went to a better law school?

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    2. Some of the best attorneys I know went to mediocre law schools. I know some mediocre attorneys that went to good law schools. It obviously isn't perfectly predictive. That being said, your average USF Law or McGeorge or Boyd grad just isn't going to have the same legal mind as your average SLS or Boalt or UCLA grad. "Success" isn't a good measure because lots of dumb attorneys are really successful and lots of brilliant attorneys are only marginally so.

      Good law schools signal general intelligence and hone legal minds - they do not train law students in the business of law. Legal success is only nominally related to legal acumen. When we are evaluating appellate judges, however, I care much more about legal acumen than marketing ability or business sense.

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    3. Meh. Full ride at Boyd versus paying out of pocket at an "elite" school? I took Boyd, and I have no regrets. Don't assume that a higher ranked law school means better "legal mind."

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    4. 2:04 nailed it. I didn't get accepted to any truly "elite" schools, but I did have choices among several good ones. I chose the good school that would result in the least debt and it's one of the smartest things I've done in life. US News & World Report "rankings" have ruined the finances of many a young person.

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    5. I think it's been beaten to death on this blog, but I'm a believer in if you can get into a T14 school then it's worth the extra cost. If not, then go to Boyd or somewhere else that offers you a scholarship.

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  18. I have not been impressed with many of Tao's opinions and dissents on the Court of Appeals. Citing to Trump was pure pandering in hopes of a federal appointment. He holds himself out as a scholar with lengthy analysis, but he misses simple points and some of his opinions are just plain nuts. It might be amusing to see him battle with Pickering and Silver, but the price of admission to that shit show is not worth it. I'll be voting for Cadish. Although I don't necessarily want to hang out with her at a party, she's always given well reasoned decisions in my cases, even when I lose.

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  19. I attended the Federalist Society Lunch where Judges Cadish and Tao debated. It is clear that both are intelligent and the "law nerds" they self-describe as. I find this exciting and refreshing for Nevada's Judiciary. But, I was slightly disappointed in Judge Cadish's performance. It seemed like her answers were generalized and simplistic to the extent that she forgot she was speaking to a room full of attorneys. Judge Tao provided more nuanced answers that you would expect when speaking to a room of attorneys and addressed judicial philosophy in depth. This was refreshing. I appreciated his recognition that the NSC has been too purpose driven for the past decades.

    With that said though, both are well qualified to be on the Nevada Supreme Court -- both intellectually and personality-wise. I've appeared before both judges on a handful of occasions for motion practice, and each was well-prepared and provided thoughtful, not off-the-cuff, decisions. In one case, although she denied a MSJ, Judge Cadish identified several specific disputed facts she relied on so I knew that the decision was based on an understanding of the case, not just not wanting to make a hard decision. Though, I will probably vote for Judge Tao solely because of his prior appellate experience.

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  20. Les Stovall representing Kathryn Mayorga in her lawsuit against Cristiano Ronaldo alleging Ronaldo sexually assaulted (raped) Mayorga. Case No. A-18-781869-C (Service Pending - that should be fun).

    https://www.thesun.co.uk/sport/7401294/cristiano-ronaldo-video-dancing-rape-accuser-kathryn-mayorga-las-vegas/

    http://www.spiegel.de/international/cristiano-ronaldo-kathryn-mayorga-the-woman-who-accuses-ronaldo-of-rape-a-1230634.html

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  21. There is discussion on this thread concerning the law schools the Nevada Supreme Court candidates attended.

    2:17 and 4:27 hit the nail on the head. I have been licensed for over thirty years, and based on having encountered and dealt with hundreds of judges and attorneys, I see no meaningful correlation between academic factors in the pre-licensing stage vs. later legal performance.

    It does not seem to matter much whether someone attended a highly ranked law school, or what their GPA was, or whether they were on law review. etc. Very little of it seems to equate with future success.

    Of the judges and attorneys who are successful, many did well in law school and attended noteworthy law schools, while many did not. Likewise, of judges and attorneys who are lesser performing, many did well in law school and attended noteworthy law schools, while many did not. I simply have never detected a trend.

    So, these factors simply don't serve as a future indicator of success. But I think of at least one exception. If someone was a great student at a great law school, and really distinguished themselves on law review and was a very proficient researcher, I suppose that could be some indicator that those skills could translate over and that such person could perform well as a research attorney for a larger firm that can afford to carry an attorney exclusively for research purposes.

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    1. Success as a lawyer is different from skill as a judge. A good marketer or schmoozer or bullshitter can be a very successful attorney without too much smarts, but a good judge needs intellectual horsepower, and academic credentials are a good indicator of that.

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    2. I don't know about law school vs. law school, but I'd disagree that law school performance doesn't correlate to future legal performance. I haven't been out 30 years, but almost all of the summas and magnas from my law school class and the handful of classes before and after my class have done very well for themselves. Sure there are plenty of people that weren't up there academically that have also done well or even better, but the rate of success seems to be lower, at least in my experience.

      5:23, your exception seems to describe the skill set necessary to be a top notch appellate judge.

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  22. 5:23 here. I still have trouble, at least from my anecdotal experience, seeing a strong correlation.

    You mention that high ranked students from your school have generally done well for themselves. It is true that those who perform well at a law schools of solid reputation will be tend to get the best of the job openings available to the newly licensed cycle of attorneys. So, law school performance, can be a real factor in a young attorney getting his or her first job. But after that, they rise or fall based on their performance, and I don't know how much of such performance is truly affected by what their GPA was. But I guess those with high GPAs are, at the very least, often quite hard-working and prepare well, and those are always good skills which increase the likelihood of success as attorneys.

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  23. I've been in front of Judge Cadish on numerous occasions and have both won and lost. In fact, I lost a very big case in front of her a few years ago on a point of law that had not been decided in Nevada. It was a rough loss. In every single case in which I've been in front of her the decisions have been well-reasoned, well-articulated and fair. There is no doubt that Judge Tao is also a very good judge. I've won and lost in front of him too but I believe the dynamic of the NSC with Cadish on the bench will be more balanced than if Judge Tao is elected. I really cannot understand the venomous attacks against Judge Cadish on this site.

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  24. I am voting for Tao.

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    1. Win, loss or draw, people are entitled to their opinions about judges. The posts about Cadish on this are fine. Professionally, I have appeared in front of her, and she has been rude to me for no reason. I am a young female attorney. She was also wrong on the law, so my client has an appeal pending in the NSC. Talking to other attorneys, my experience is not the only one. So, Tao for me.

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