Here is a recent example:
A Michigan judge who admittedly had an affair with the wife of a man in a child-support case before his court won't have to face a federal civil rights case, a U.S. appeals court has ruled.If this is not bias, what is? The judge had an affair with the other party in court.
Calling the conduct of now-former Wayne Circuit Judge Wade McCree "often reprehensible," a three-judge panel of the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals nonetheless held the judicial immunity doctrine barred Robert King from seeking damages, the Detroit Free Press reports.
King, who claims his due process rights were violated by McCree on multiple occasions, can't sue over the jurist's judicial actions. And McCree's nonjudicial actions aren't responsible for the civil rights violations claimed by King, the panel explained in its Monday opinion (PDF). "Personal bias alone of a judge—when not serving in a judicial function—does not create a due-process violation."
Attorney Joel Sklar represents King and told the newspaper his client intends to appeal the 6th Circuit ruling to the U.S. Supreme Court.
And no, the U.S. Supreme Court will not hear the case.
Update: Instapundit piles on:
At the very least, if judges are to enjoy absolute immunity from lawsuits over misconduct, that immunity should come from the legislature. Right now, it’s a judicially-created doctrine, which is self-serving in the extreme.
This case isn’t the worst misconduct shielded by judicial immunity, but it’s pretty bad.
And speaking of self-dealing, this doesn’t look good: “McCree is the son of the late Wade Hampton McCree Jr., who was the first black person appointed to the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals and the second black solicitor general in U.S. history.” Though the doctrine is so absolute that it doesn’t really matter. And did I mention that this rule of absolute immunity for judges, no matter how serious their misconduct, was created by ... judges?