This is ugly. PA Supreme Court has voted to suspend one of its members for various infractions, including the dissemination of pornographic emails from work computers. The suspension order issued per curium, but apparently only attracted the votes of 4 of 7 possible justices. One justice, dissenting, would have sent the matter to a judicial conduct board. The suspended justice didn’t vote, and neither did a justice who just accused the suspended justice of trying to blackmail him over yet more pornographic emails. One of the four votes comes from a justice appointed by Pennsylvania’s governor, to replace another justice who had been suspended after being indicted.
Still with me? Here’s where the fun starts. Pennsylvania’s Chief Justice, who has been long-involved in a heated fight with the newly suspended justice over control over Philadelphia’s court system, concurred in the per curium opinion. His “concurring statement,” destined for the headlines, contains the following astonishing paragraph: