Judge Michael Daly Hawkins has been a member of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals since 1994; but he has been concerned with the forms and varieties of administrative or bureaucratic process his entire career. When he became a member of the federal judiciary, his role was clearly altered. However, his commitment to fairness and integrity in adjudication remained undiminished. This article will explore some of Judge Hawkins’s many immigration decisions, both majority and dissenting opinions, which reflect his commitment to the preservation of a due process.
The reality of immigration adjudication in the Ninth Circuit is that there are a vast number of non-precedential, “unpublished” decisions issued by three judge panels with a heavy role for the staff attorneys drafting all or parts of the opinion. It is in this context that we examine the key immigration cases of Judge Hawkins, knowing that no immigration opinion can be written in the Ninth Circuit without an understanding that perhaps one hundred or more immigration cases may be decided in a month within the Ninth Circuit alone.
43 Arizona State Law Journal 7-37 (2011).