The Volokh Conspiracy

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The 'religious inclinations' concurrence: an explanation from Judge Bauer himself


Last week I posted about a Seventh Circuit opinion resolving a dispute between a Chabad rabbi and Northwestern University. I also asked about a brief concurring opinion by Judge Bauer which observed that the result in the case "meets my legal and religious inclinations."

The ABA Journal has an interview with Judge Bauer, providing an explanation:

For his part, Baude said he can't figure out why religious inclinations ought to decide whether Bauer joins Posner's opinion in full.

Bauer explains his concurrence in an interview with the ABA Journal. "I was being tongue in cheek," Bauer told the ABA Journal, "and let me tell you why. As I pointed out at the beginning of the [concurrence], the citations are to things outside the record. …

"Once you've arrived at the opinion based on the record, I think that's where you ought to quit."

Bauer added that his religious inclination "is that you should serve liquor at religious events" and notes his comments in oral arguments, where he asked about the university's treatment of Irish organizations and about Illinois laws on underage alcohol use. "Use of liquor is that important to me-I come from an Irish background," Bauer said during the arguments.