Law: Big People Can Be Wrong

A persistent attorney wins vindication from the Chief Justice

Like some 170,000 lawyers before him, Michael T. Rose was admitted to the U.S. Supreme Court bar late last month. Normally such admission is a routine step. In Rose's case, however, it represented release from a four-year "living nightmare" that cost him, he says, "friends, clients and career and I don't know how many sleepless nights." What finally ended Rose's ordeal was the same thing that began it: an unusual opinion by Chief Justice Warren Burger.

Rose was first admitted to the Supreme Court bar in 1982, when he was a Denver attorney. Although a majority of the court approved his...

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