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Michael Kanne

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Michael Kanne
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Current Court Information:
United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
Title:   Judge
Station:   Lafayette, IN
Appointed by:   Ronald Reagan
Active:   5/20/1987-Present
Preceded by:   Jesse Eschbach
Past post:   Northern District of Indiana
Past term:   1982-1987
Past position:   Seat #3
Personal History
Born:   1938
Hometown:   Rensselaer, IN
Undergraduate:   Indiana University, 1962
Law School:   Indiana University Law School, 1968

Michael Stephen Kanne is a federal judge for the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit. He joined the court in 1987 after being nominated by President Ronald Reagan.[1]


Kanne graduated from Indiana University with his bachelor's degree in 1962 and a J.D. from the Indiana University School of Law in 1968.[1]

Military service

Kanne served as a Lieutenant in the United States Air Force from 1962 to 1965.[1]

Professional career

Judicial career

Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals

On the recommendation of U.S. Senator Dick Lugar, Kanne was nominated to the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit by President Ronald Reagan on February 2, 1987, to a seat vacated by Judge Jesse Eschbach. Kanne was confirmed by the Senate on May 19, 1987, on a voice vote and received commission on May 20, 1987.[2]

Northern District of Indiana

Kanne was nominated to the United States District Court for the Northern District of Indiana by Ronald Reagan on December 4, 1981, to a seat vacated by Judge Phil McNagny. Kanne was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on February 8, 1982, and received commission on February 9, 1982.[1] Kanne was succeeded in this position by Judge Rudy Lozano.

Notable cases

"Banana Lady" copyright infringement case dismissed (2014)

     United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit (Conrad v. AM Community Credit Union, et al, 13-2899)

On April 14, 2014, a three-judge panel of the Seventh Circuit, composed of Judges Kanne, Richard Posner, and John Tinder, found that Catherine Conrad (also known as the "Banana Lady"), a pro se plaintiff, did not have a valid copyright infringement claim related to videos of her "singing telegram" performance posted on Facebook.[3]

In the underlying case, Conrad performed at a credit union trade association conference, but asked that audience members not take photos or videos of the performance, save for their own personal use. Audience members then posted photos and videos of her performance on their personal Facebook pages, which prompted Conrad to sue, alleging violations of her intellectual property rights. Judge Barbara Crabb of the Western District of Wisconsin dismissed Conrad's suit, finding that it had no legal merit.[3]

Conrad further appealed to the Seventh Circuit, where Posner, writing for the majority, affirmed Judge Crabb's dismissal of the lawsuit, noting that the "Banana Lady" had long abused the judicial system, having filed at least eight "frivolous lawsuits" in federal court since 2009, and at least nine in state court since 2011. Posner encouraged the Western District of Wisconsin to prevent Conrad from filing additional lawsuits until she paid her prior litigation debts of over $130,000 in defendants' fees and costs.[3]

IL abortion law case (2009)

     United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit (Zbaraz et al., v. Lisa Madigan, Attorney General of Illinois, et at., US 08-1620, 08-1782)

Judge Kanne was part of a three judge-panel led by Judge John Tinder on July 14, 2009, that removed an injunction against the Illinois Parental Notice of Abortion Act of 1995.[4] The 1995 law required parental notification for abortions in Illinois. After the law was passed, it remained latent due to an injunction filed that prevented enforcement.[4]

Under the law, parents must be notified 48 hours before a girl age seventeen or younger obtains an abortion in Illinois. However, it does not require parental consent. The law also contains a provision to bypass the notification requirement by notifying a judge.[5]

After the law was passed, a group of Illinois doctors demanded that Attorney General Jim Ryan refrain from enforcing it due to complaints over the judicial bypass provision. Both sides agreed to a court order placing an injunction on enforcement of the law. It was not until 2006 that the Illinois Supreme Court allowed enforcement of the law, but the State was required to file a lawsuit to lift the injunction.[5]

The suit was filed in March 2007, when Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan petitioned federal judge David Coar to lift the injunction.[5] Judge Coar denied the petition, and subsequently, the Thomas More Society and the Illinois Catholic Conference filed an appeal to the Seventh Circuit.

The three-judge panel decided in favor of the judicial bypass provision, stating, "the law is constitutional on its face under the relevant criteria for consent statutes, and therefore, it satisfies any criteria that are required for bypass provisions in notice statutes.”[5]

Judge Kanne and Tinder were joined on the three-judge panel by Judge Richard Cudahy.[5]

See also

External links


Federal judicial offices
Preceded by:
Phil McNagny
Northern District of Indiana
Seat #3
Succeeded by:
Rudy Lozano
Preceded by:
Jesse Eschbach
Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals
Succeeded by: