Rubashkin—convicted of 86 fraud charges and sentenced to 27 years in prison following the immigration raid on the Agriprocessors plant in Postville, Iowa—in 2011 lost his bid for a new trial before the U.S. Court of Appeals 8th Circuit.
Through Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests, Rubashkin’s lawyers obtained documents showing that Iowa federal judge Linda Reade, who sentenced Rubashkin, cooperated with government agents and prosecutors regarding the immigration raid. Rubashkin’s representation, therefore, argued before the 8th circuit that Reade was biased against Rubashkin and should have recused herself from his fraud trial.
Shortly after the 8th circuit rejected this argument, Paul Clement—who recently led the multistate challenge to “Obamacare” in the Supreme Court—joined Rubashkin’s team as its lead attorney. The government requested three extensions beyond the initial May 5 deadline to file a Supreme Court brief, but Clement expects no further delay past July 25.
In the following interview, Clement spoke with JNS.org about the upcoming brief and what comes next.
JNS.org: What is the significance of the government’s July 25 brief, and what are you expecting?
Paul Clement: “The first thing to note is that the government’s request for a third extension is rather unusual and that it suggests that the government is working hard on this brief, and it has not been a straightforward brief.
Can you elaborate on why you believe the government should confess error in this case?