Tuesday, January 10, 2012
Following up on my prior posts (links below) on the lawsuit filed against former Iowa Law School Dean (and Tax Prof) Carolyn Jones by Teresa R. Wagner, Associate Director of the school's Writing Resource Center, claiming that she was twice rejected for a legal writing faculty position because of her conservative political views: New York Times, Lawsuit Pits Political Activism Against Campus Diversity, by Adam Liptak:
Teresa R. Wagner is a conservative Republican who wants to teach law. Her politics may have hurt her career.
An official of the University of Iow College of Law, where Ms. Wagner applied for a job in 2006, certainly seemed to think so. “Frankly, one thing that worries me is that some people may be opposed to Teresa serving in any role, in part at least because they so despise her politics (and especially her activism about it),” Associate Dean Jonathan C. Carlson wrote in 2007 to the law school’s dean, Carolyn Jones.
Ms. Wagner, who graduated from the law school in 1993 and had taught at the George Mason University School of Law, was not hired. She sued, alleging discrimination because of her political beliefs. Late last month, a unanimous three-judge panel of the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, in St. Louis, ruled that her case should go to trial, saying she had presented enough evidence to suggest that “Dean Jones’s repeated decisions not to hire Wagner were in part motivated by Wagner’s constitutionally protected First Amendment rights of political belief and association.” ...
According to Ms. Wagner’s lawsuit, the law faculty at Iowa in 2007 included a single registered Republican among its 50 or so members. The Republican professor was appointed in 1984. In 2009, The Des Moines Register found that there were two registered Republicans on the faculty. Ms. Wagner would have added some balance, her lawyer said.
- Paul Horwitz (Alabama), NYT on the Iowa Discrimination Decision:
Prior TaxProf Blog coverage
- Unsuccessful Iowa Legal Writing Faculty Candidate Sues, Claiming Discrimination Due to Her Conservative Views (Jan. 29, 2009)
- Judge Dismisses Claim by Unsuccessful Iowa Legal Writing Faculty Candidate Alleging Discrimination Due to Her Conservative Views (Apr. 2, 2010)
- Unsuccessful Iowa Legal Writing Faculty Candidate Appeals Dismissal of Suit Claiming Discrimination Due to Her Conservative Views (July 13, 2010)
- 8th Circuit Re-institutes Discrimination Lawsuit by Unsuccessful Republican Faculty Candidate Against Iowa Law School Dean (Dec. 29, 2011)