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« This Week in the National Law Journal | Main | Clement Leaves King & Spalding to Continue Same-Sex Marriage Litigation »

April 25, 2011


Terry Beckett

King & Spaulding are a disgrace withdrawing their services in the face of criticism.They have a professional and fiduciary to their clients, whoever they are.

And they are not being paid to judge but to represent the interests of their clients.


Journalists are overlooking an important angle in this story. The court is NOT required to approve a party's Substitution of Counsel -- there is a constitutional right to select one's own counsel. The only reason why a Motion To Withdraw is filed is if the party is REFUSING to change law firms -- i.e., if the law firm wants out of the case but the party is refusing to find substitute counsel. So it is very interesting that such a Motion was filed here.

Michael Bennett

DOMA is an absurd law. No one, neither private citizen nor lawyer, has any obligation to follow laws that are discriminatory or which given even the appearance of being discriminatory. Want to defend Plessey v. Ferguson in light of Brown v. Board? Want to roll back Gideon v. Wainwright? Haven't we don enough damage to the Fourth Amendment without doing more damage to other areas of privacy? How about reversing Roe v. Wade and Griswold v. Connecticut? Good grief---this isn't a matter of zealous representation! This is a matter of doing the right thing because it is the right thing to do. Bravo, K&S!!!! After years of being on the wrong side in most of the cases you took in Atlanta and elsewhere, you finally did the right thing!!!!

Atlanta Roofing

Paul Clements' problem is that there are nine DOMA cases pending in several jurisdictions. King & Spalding has sufficient staff to assist; a six attorney firm is going to be stretched beyond its capacity to undertake this assignment. I'm not so sure that Boner will want to go that route. He may try to find another law firm.

Harry Belafonte

The intimidation and harassment engaged in by HRC and its ilk is truy disguisting. Why are they afraid to allow a law duly passed by the nation's elected representatives have its day in court?

Jeff Spangler

Apparently HRC also doesn't understand the role of attorneys in a Nation of Laws. Such arrogance on both sides!

Daniel Artz

As a lawyer, and one committed to the ethical obligations of lawyers (an apparently vanishing breed, I'm afraid), I'm deeply offended by this withdrawal. Paul Clement's letter of resignation from King & Spaulding hits the nail on the head - K&S had no obligation to undertake the representation of an unpopular side in this controversy in the first place, but, once having done so, it was cowardly and unprofessional of the firm to withdraw in the face of public criticism. Clarence Darrow is well remembered as much for his willingness to take on cases highly unpopular with the public as for his rhetoric; No one I know defends the actions of Leopold & Loeb, but Clarence Darrow should be remembered as a brave and professional advocate for accepting the representation and seeing it through. If public criticism can chase competent attorneys away from the representation of any unpopular cause, the adversarial system, and our system of justice, is at risk.

jesus Christ

Thank god for common sense. Kudos to the law firm!

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