Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Controversial Judge Picked by President Obama Which Oversees Wisconsin

David Barton from WallBuilder's sent out a release about a nomination made by President Obama which will influence judicial decisions that will impact Wisconsin.

A Presidential Nominee 

President Obama has begun making nominations to the U. S. Courts of Appeals. His first nomination – a very troubling one – is of Federal District Judge David Hamilton to the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, which oversees Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin.

When Hamilton was made a federal district judge by President Clinton in 1994, the American Bar Association rated him as "not qualified." After all, prior to his appointment as a judge, Hamilton had been a fundraiser for the widely-discredited group ACORN and was also a board member of the Indiana ACLU, serving as its litigation director.

Consider some of the notable decisions he has rendered as a federal district judge.


Three years ago in 2006, Judge Hamilton delivered an unprecedented ruling, ordering the Indiana Legislature to discontinue its 188-year-old tradition of opening legislative sessions with prayer. Strikingly, the case had been brought before him by the Indiana ACLU – the very group that he had helped direct.

Even though the legislature had prayers from Catholic, Protestant, Jewish, and Muslim clerics, Judge Hamilton complained that some of the ministers had used the wrong words in their prayers. He then proceeded to list permissible words and phrases to be used in public prayers and pointed out that any prayers "offered in the name of Jesus, Jesus Christ, the Savior, and/or the Son" were unconstitutional; he would allow no public prayer unless it "refrain[ed] from using Christ's name or title." Strikingly, however, Judge Hamilton held that prayers offered in the name "Allah" were constitutional.

Even though the U. S. Supreme Court had already said in clear terms that judges were not to parse the wording of prayers, Judge Hamilton had no difficulty in disregarding that by not only telling individuals whether they could pray but also what words to use in their personally- composed public prayers.

The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals (to which he has now been nominated) overturned Judge Hamilton's egregious ruling.


The Indiana Legislature passed a law requiring abortion clinics to provide women with information about alternatives to abortion, but for seven years, Judge Hamilton kept that law tied up in his court before finally striking it down.

The 7th Circuit Court (1) reversed Hamilton's radical pro-abortion decision in that case, (2) pointed out that his ruling was unprecedented by any other court in the country, and (3) chided him for his abusive handling of that case, noting:

For seven years, Indiana has been prevented from enforcing a statute materially identical to a law held valid by the Supreme Court in Casey [in 1992], by this court in Karlin [in 1998], and by the fifth circuit in Barnes [in 1992]. No court anywhere in the country (other than one district judge in Indiana [i.e., Hamilton]) has held any similar law invalid in the years since Casey. Although Salerno [in 1987] does not foreclose all pre-enforcement challenges to abortion laws, it is an abuse of discretion for a district judge to issue a pre-enforcement injunction while the effects of the law (and reasons for those effects) are open to debate. (emphasis added)

There are many other troubling decisions by Judge Hamilton, including issues related to illegal drug possession, and the ability of child sex offenders to move freely within a state.

Judge David Hamilton has proven himself to be an extreme pro-abortion activist and a religious bigot, specifically singling out Christianity for hostile treatment. Now, President Obama wants to reward him by elevating him to the very court that overruled his radical decisions. Please call your two U. S. Senators and ask them to vote against Judge Hamilton for the 7th Circuit. Americans do not need judicial activists on federal courts who deliberately undermine the constitutional protection of life and religious liberty. (To find the phone numbers and email addresses of your Senators, go to and select your state from the top right corner.)

God bless!

David Barton