Don't punish lawyers for representing unpopular clients

Everyone deserves a lawyer, no matter what the charges against them

Sen. Christopher Coons
(Image credit: (Brooks Kraft/Corbis))

Earlier this month, the Senate rejected the nomination of Debo Adegbile to be chief of the Civil Rights Division of the Justice Department. Adegbile's bid was scuttled because as an executive of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund he once worked on a series of briefs supporting legal arguments made on behalf of Mumia Abu-Jamal, who was controversially convicted of killing a Philadelphia police officer in 1991.

The primary argument made against Adegbile is essentially that the sins of the client ought to be laid upon the lawyer.

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