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Rankin: Other States Should Catch Up
Mr. Vernon is wrong about the ABA pro hac vice model rule, and in at
least two ways: 1) pro hac vice admission is case-by-case admission and
is irrelevant to the discussion of motion admission or diploma
privilege; and 2) the version of the model rule he refers to was
deep-sixed by the ABA, and no longer requires one to have been first
admitted by examination to qualify for motion admission.
His point about "second-class law schools" is perfectly fine ...
except including them in the diploma privilege also means either
including all the law schools no matter how they rate, or
having the court decide which is better, Harvard or Oral Roberts.
I cannot speak to the statement that "Wisconsin ranks 50th among the
states in attracting graduates from out-of-state colleges" because that
lumps Platteville in with the U.W. (and Stout, Whitewater, La Crosse)
and ignores the built-in (and purposive) bias to admit in-state
Ms. Sajna neglects the fact that bar exams are similar nationwide,
and all test subjects "those lawyers have never practiced and have no
intention of ever practicing." As long as we all give general licenses
to practice law, we must assume that lawyers will attempt to serve
whoever comes in the door.
Mr. Jones needs to check his stats more closely. The 2003 Edition
of the ABA-LSAC Guide to Law Schools shows that all five Marquette
grads passed the Illinois bar at the rate of 80 percent, while
Wisconsin's 211 grads passed at the rate of 100 percent.
Gene R. Rankin, Director, Board of Bar Examiners
Levine: End Separate-But-Equal Bar
Lawyers from all over the country have responded to the December
article with letters and calls. What surprised me was not only the
response from lawyers who have had to run the gauntlet of our present
bar exam, but the friendly reaction by U.W. and Marquette graduates who
realize that the present two-track system is unfair to graduates of
other law schools and should be changed. There are many U.W. and
Marquette grads who don't share the view that only Wisconsin "gets it
right" with respect to legal education or that only Wisconsin law
schools provide a "quality" education.
I did not write the article merely as an intellectual exercise. Now
that the problem has been identified, it's time for action. In the
coming months a proposal will be presented to the Board of Governors and
supreme court to extend the diploma privilege to graduates of all
ABA-approved law schools on the same basis as it applies to graduates of
U.W. and Marquette. Anyone interested in working on this effort, please
Recently, I discovered that from 1897 to 1903, the diploma privilege
was extended to graduates of out-of-state law schools. (See
Steininger, The Diploma Privilege - Recent Developments, Wis.
B. Bull., April 1974, pp. 14-18). The time has come to try it again.
Steve Levine, Madison, email@example.com