THE date marks the day with the fewest daylight hours of the year It is also when the Sun is at its lowest point in the sky, in the northern hemisphere. When is the winter solstice 2018? This year’s winter solstice, which is also known as midwinter, is on December 21 at 10.23pm. The world "solstice" comes from the Latin solstitium meaning "Sun stands still" because the apparent movement of the Sun's path north or south stops before changing direction. It is the shortest day of the year. Across Europe it is known as Yule, from the Norse word Jul (or juul), meaning wheel. In the northern hemisphere it is when the North Pole is pointing away from the Sun. How is it celebrated? The day has been celebrated by various cultures around the world for thousands of years and is generally a recognition of rebirth. Most notably it is associated with the druids who mark the start of the solar year with a celebration of light and the rebirth of the Sun. The Feast of Jul was observed … [Read more...] about When is the winter solstice 2018 and how is the shortest day celebrated?
Yule or yuletide
A federal appeals court has found that Arizona’s restrictions on judicial campaign activities do not violate the First Amendment.The San Francisco-based 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the restrictions in an opinion (PDF) on Wednesday. Courthouse News Service and the Metropolitan News-Enterprise have stories.“Judges engaging in political acts may present different levels of impropriety in different situations,” the court said. “It is not our proper role to second-guess Arizona’s decision in this regard.”The court ruled in an appeal by unsuccessful judicial candidate Randolph Wolfson. He challenged provisions of the judicial conduct code that barred judges and judicial candidates from:• Personally soliciting campaign contributions for their own campaigns or for campaigns of other candidates or other political groups.• Endorsing other candidates for public office.• Making speeches on behalf of other candidates or political … [Read more...] about 9th Circuit upholds Arizona’s restrictions on judicial campaign activities
The First Amendment permits states to ban judicial candidates from personally soliciting campaign funds, the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled in a divided opinion.Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. joined with the court’s liberals to uphold the Florida judicial conduct rule that bars judicial candidates from personally asking for campaign donations. His opinion (PDF) was joined in full by Justices Stephen G. Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg joined all but one part of Roberts’ opinion.“Judges are not politicians, even when they come to the bench by way of the ballot,” Roberts wrote. “And a state’s decision to elect its judiciary does not compel it to treat judicial candidates like campaigners for political office. A state may assure its people that judges will apply the law without fear or favor—and without having personally asked anyone for money.”Roberts applied an exacting scrutiny standard that allows … [Read more...] about States may ban judicial candidates from personally asking for campaign cash, SCOTUS rules
The ABA has filed an amicus brief urging the U.S. Supreme Court to uphold a Florida judicial conduct rule that bars judicial candidates from personally soliciting campaign funds.The issue in Williams-Yulee v. The Florida Bar is whether the Florida ban violates the First Amendment. The ABA argues in its brief (PDF) that the ban on personal solicitations is narrowly tailored to promote the state’s compelling interest in a fair and impartial judiciary free from corruption and the appearance of corruption. The case is scheduled for argument on Jan. 20, according to an ABA press release.The Florida judicial ethics rule is nearly identical to a canon in the ABA Model Code of Judicial Conduct. Florida is among 30 states with such ethics rules, according to the ABA. Despite the ban on personal solicitations for contributions, the canon allows judicial candidates to establish committees to raise funds and to communicate their views and qualifications for office.The petitioner, Lanell … [Read more...] about ABA urges SCOTUS to uphold ethics rule banning judicial candidates from soliciting contributions
The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday agreed to decide the constitutionality of a Florida judicial conduct rule that bars judicial candidates from personally soliciting campaign contributions.At issue is whether the ban violates the First Amendment, report the Washington Post and the New York Times. Federal appeals courts have split on the issue. SCOTUSblog links to the cert petition (PDF) and other documents.The Florida ban does not allow judicial candidates to make in-person requests for funds, nor does it allow solicitations in mass mailings and speeches. The conduct rule does allow judicial candidates to form committees to solicit funds, however.The petitioner, Lanell Williams-Yulee, was reprimanded and ordered to pay court costs for signing a mass-mail fundraising letter in 2010 while a candidate for a judgeship in Hillsborough County.Thirty-nine states either elect judges or have judicial retention elections. Thirty of them ban personal solicitation of campaign contributions by the … [Read more...] about SCOTUS to consider ethics rule banning judicial candidates from soliciting contributions