Not to mention that Judge Becker sanctioned me - and my pro bono client - after we both sued him, and the lawsuit was pending at the time sanctions were imposed.
Now, other jurisdiction approach the issue of judicial disqualification quite differently.
A lot of states have the following layers of protection for lawyers making motion to recuse a judge:
1) a peremptory challenge to a judge allowing an attorney to remove one judge from the proceedings without explaining reasons why (same as there are rights for peremptory challenges to jurors);
2) a rule prohibiting the challenged judge from ruling on any issue in the case, including the motion to recuse, once the motion is filed; the motion must be transferred and decided by another judge, and the case is stayed until that is done;
3) a rule allowing the challenged judge to rule on legal sufficiency and/or timeliness of the motion to recuse, but not on the merits.
A lot of states have one, two or all three above protections for lawyers.
New York State has none.
New York State allows challenged judges not only to rule on the merits of a motion to recuse, but to retaliate against the moving party - by sanctions (as was done with me and my pro bono client), and by physical force, as was done by Judge Kevin Dowd with a pro se litigant who dared to move to recuse him.
As I am learning now, other states also deal differently than New York in case judges retaliate against litigants or attorneys for making motions to recuse, or for even presiding over cases of parties who had pending lawsuits against judges.
In South Carolina, a "Merit Selection Board" of judges canned for re-election judge F.P. ("Charlie") Segars-Andrews who withdrew her pledge to recuse because of a conflict of interest and who has ruled in favor of the party and attorney who has benefited the judge's husband with a $300,000 bounty shortly before the judge presided over the case.
In Texas, the State Attorney General brought criminal charges against judge Christopher Dupuy for doing exactly what Judge Becker did to me - retaliating for making a motion to recuse.
In Texas, the now former Judge Christopher Dupuy was criminally charged for retaliation against attorney Lori Laird for making a motion to recuse the judge with abuse of office, perjury, taken off the bench on petition of State Attorney General and convicted of perjury and abuse of office on charges presented by State Attorney General.
At sentencing, a Texas judge reportedly told Judge Dupuy this:
"You brought an incredible dishonor to yourself, your name and this profession. ... Anybody who reads or knows about this case makes our job as judges harder because of what you did."
Judge Christopher Dupuy, by the way, tried to have his criminal prosecutor sanctioned for bringing criminal charges.
And, in North Carolina, a judge was censured for presiding over a case of a party who had a pending lawsuit against a judge.
In my case,
- the New York State Attorney General refused to bring a "quo warranto" proceeding against Judge Becker to remove him from office or to prosecute him for fixing cases for friends and abusing his office by retaliating against me and my clients,
- then, the New York State Attorney General represented Judge Becker in two lawsuits that I brought against him, one in state court, and one in federal court, for retaliation through sanctions imposed on me and my pro bono client by Becker after we sued him in State court; and asked, on Becker's behalf, to dismiss the lawsuits and leave us without a remedy - which was done;
- the NYS Commission for Judicial Conduct refused to sanction Becker, despite Becker's presiding and sanctioning a party and her attorney while having a pending lawsuit filed by that party and attorney against him, and instead
- I was suspended without a hearing for making motions to recuse Becker.
The bottom-line - New York is a real wonder world when it comes to the rule of law.