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Walsh v. Krantz

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE MIDDLE DISTRICT OF PENNSYLVANIA


February 18, 2009

RORY M. WALSH, INDIVIDUALLY AND AS NATURAL GUARDIAN OF C.R.W. AND S.J.W., PLAINTIFFS
v.
DR. ROBERT KRANTZ, ET AL., DEFENDANTS

The opinion of the court was delivered by: (Judge Conner)

ORDER

AND NOW, this 18th day of February, 2009, upon consideration of pro se plaintiff's second motion (Doc. 135) for recusal of the undersigned,*fn1 wherein plaintiff sets forth two principal grounds for recusal,*fn2 to wit: (1) the court declined to overrule the order (Doc. 113) of the magistrate judge denying plaintiff's request to compel discovery, and (2) the court improperly "[s]equenc[ed] the decisions in this action with decisions in the prior action . . . . significantly drawing down on [plaintiff's] ability to file his appeal for that earlier action,"*fn3 (Doc. 137, Ex. A ¶¶ 5-6), and although plaintiff posits averments that the undersigned is personally biased,*fn4 plaintiff's first allegation simply levies a claim of "judicial bias," which is legally insufficient to warrant recusal, see United States v. Grinnell Corp., 384 U.S. 563, 583 (1966) ("The alleged bias and prejudice to be disqualifying must stem from an extra-judicial source and result in an opinion on the merits on some basis other than what the judge learned from his participation in the case."); see also Liteky v. United States, 510 U.S. 540, 552-56 (1994) (holding that claims of personal bias and prejudice are subject to an "extra-judicial source limitation" under both § 144 and § 455); Securacomm Consulting, Inc. v. Securacom, Inc., 224 F.3d 273, 278 (3d Cir. 2000) (stating that "a party's displeasure with legal rulings does not form an adequate basis for recusal" (internal quotations omitted)), and that plaintiff's second allegation is untimely, see § 144 (requiring a party to seek recusal with reasonable diligence); In re Kensington Int'l, Ltd., 368 F.3d 289, 312 (3d Cir. 2004) (stating that "parties seeking disqualification under § 455(a) should do so in a timely manner"), that it fails to implicate extra-judicial conduct,*fn5 and that no reasonable person would question the impartiality of the undersigned as a result of the allegation, see Liteky, 510 U.S. at 548, it is hereby ORDERED that plaintiff's second motion (Doc. 135) to recuse is DENIED.

CHRISTOPHER C. CONNER United States District Judge


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