To The Editor:
I disagree with your designation of attorneys Ken Bartschi and Karen Dowd in your “Dozen Who Made A Difference” section in the Dec. 22, 2008 edition of the Law Tribune. That award should have gone to Attorney General Richard Blumenthal who perhaps did more to bring about the result reached in the Kerrigan case than your recipients (who were co-counsel for the plaintiffs in the same-sex marriage case).
The failure of the state to argue the state’s interest in “traditional marriage on the ground that it advanced the state’s compelling interest in promoting responsible procreation and child-bearing” clearly made the result possible. By leaving this most persuasive argument behind, the attorney general put his thumb on the scales of justice on the side of his opponent and made more of a difference in the outcome than did either Mr. Bartschi or Ms. Dowd.
Regrettably, only your brilliant columnist Karen Lee Torre had the courage to point out that the people of the state of Connecticut were not adequately represented by the arguments made by the attorney general.
Your article reports that the proponents in the Kerrigan case were gratified by a lack of public outcry with the result. This, I am afraid, stems not from an agreement with the outcome of the Kerrigan case, but from a reservoir of respect for a judicial system that has been a source of pride for all of us for its intellectual honesty and ethical standards. In addition, the true facts of the ethical breach that produced the outcome are not generally known.
One cannot claim to have won any struggle where the opponent throws the match. As there is a clear indication that this is exactly what happened in the Kerrigan case, the real difference was made by the attorney general and your congratulations should have gone to him.
Attorney Vincent T. McManus Jr.