A pro-life activist has lost a lawsuit that accused the University of Iowa law school and its former dean of discriminating against her because of her political views.
The verdict in the federal case brought by Teresa Manning was announced late Monday afternoon in Davenport, Iowa, after several hours of deliberations and a six-day trial.
Mrs. Manning, an Iowa Law alumna, said then-Dean Carolyn Jones refused to hire her for a teaching job in 2007 because of her previous work with the Family Research Council and the National Right to Life Committee. She had been one of three candidates for two jobs, of which the university filled one with a self-described liberal and left the other open.
Attorneys for Mrs. Manning said she was essentially blackballed by a law school professor who, when he was a clerk at the U.S. Supreme Court, had helped write the Roe vs. Wade decision that made abortion a federal right. They noted that an associate dean had warned Ms. Jones that professors were acting “because they so despise her politics (and especially her activism about it).” At the time, 46 of the 50 members of the law-school faculty were registered Democrats.
“I find the verdict incomprehensible given the evidence we presented. I don’t know what else to say,” Mrs. Manning told reporters in Iowa.
The university said Mrs. Manning killed her own chances in the interview by saying she would teach legal writing instead of legal analysis, the latter of which was also a job requirement, according to the law school.
“We are pleased with the outcome and happy to put this case behind us,” university spokeswoman Jeneane Beck said.
Mrs. Manning is writing a book about the case for Encounter Books, with the tentative title “Academic Injustices” and a scheduled January release.