25 J. Marshall L. Rev. 37 (1991-1992)
Edmonson v. Leesville Concrete Co.: Will the Peremptory Challenge Survive Its Battle with the Equal Protection Clause

handle is hein.journals/jmlr25 and id is 51 raw text is: RECENT DEVELOPMENTS
EDMONSON v. LEESVILLE CONCRETE CO.:*
WILL THE PEREMPTORY CHALLENGE
SURVIVE ITS BATTLE WITH THE
EQUAL PROTECTION CLAUSE?
STEVEN M. PUISZIS**
The true rule, in determining to embrace, or rject any thing is not
whether it /has] any evil in i4 but whether it [has] more of evil, than of
good. There are few things wholly evil or wholly good. Almost every
thing, especially of governmental policy, is an inseparable compound
of the two; so that our best judgment of the preponderance between
them is continually demanded. .... Why not apply it then upon this
question?
Abraham Lincoln
From a speech in the U. S. House of Representatives on Internal
Improvements [June 20, 1848].
Experienced trial counsel have at one time or another exer-
cised a peremptory challenge to excuse a prospective juror for rea-
sons they could not precisely put their finger on. Was it the manner
in which the juror slouched in the jury box or the juror's refusal
to make eye contact? Perhaps it was the loud sports coat that did
not fit the juror's three hundred pound frame. Was it the juror's
unemployment during the past year? Could it have been that the
juror was Irish, Italian, Jewish, a Democrat, a Republican, a school-
teacher, an accountant, or an ex-Marine, and was therefore either
too liberal or too conservative to fit the ideal juror profile? Perhaps
it was that admonition he received from a so-called behavioral sci-
entist to never put a housewife on a jury in a products case be-
cause they too frequently experience appliances that break down at
home.
* 111 S. Ct. 2077 (1991)
** Steven M. Puiszis, B.S.C., 1976, DePaul University; J.D., 1979, Loyola
University of Chicago School of Law, is a partner in the Chicago office of Hin-
shaw & Culbertson and a former prosecutor in the criminal and special prosecu-
tion divisions of the Cook County States Attorney's Office. A prior version was
initially delivered as part of a presentation to the Illinois Association of Defense
Trial Counsel on September 14,1991 at their fall seminar in St. Louis, Missouri.
The author gratefully acknowledges the valuable research assistance of Steven
Bonanno, Class of 1992, The John Marshall Law School.

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