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Law school faculty share expertise with media

Several Drake University Law School faculty members have recently shared their expertise on legal issues and current events with local and national media outlets.

Appearing in Monday’s issue of the Des Moines Register is an opinion piece written by Ian Bartrum, assistant professor of law. The article, titled “Don’t simply dismiss O’Donnell’s point,” explores the separation of church and state and tea party candidate Christine O’Donnell’s interpretation of the United States Constitution. Read the entire piece on the Register website.

Andrea Charlow, associate dean and professor of law, is quoted several times in an article about domestic abuse in Monday’s Des Moines Register.

Charlow addressed both the advantages and limitations of protective orders in curbing violence in domestic situations.

“It’s a piece of paper,” Charlow told the Register. “If someone is willing to come close enough to be a threat, the protective order is only as good as how fast the police can respond.”

Last week Law School Dean Allan Vestal was quoted in several major newspapers such as the Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times and Wall Street Journal Online about the issues involved in the Nov. 2 retention election in which three Iowa State Supreme Court justices were ousted.

The most recent story, which appeared in the Los Angeles Times on Nov. 5, examined the impact of the election’s outcome. The story was headlined “Rejection of Iowa judges over gay marriage raises fears of political influence.”

The Iowa justices were targeted by a group opposed to gay marriage after last year’s unanimous Iowa Supreme Court decision to lift a ban on same-sex marriage. The ouster of the three justices who were on the ballot for their regular retention election is not expected to affect same-sex marriage rights in Iowa.

“It was an attempt to intimidate judges,” Dean Vestal told the LA Times. “It had no immediate practical effect [on the Varnum decision].” Read the entire story online.