Southern District of New York Judge Jed Rakoff's position on his refusal to approve the consent judgment between the SEC and Citigroup Global Markets Inc. was argued to the Second Circuit by appointed pro bono counsel in this brief. In the appeal, the SEC and Citigroup both contend that Judge Rakoff abused his discretion in refusing to approve the consent judgment. In the U.S. District Court's brief, pro bono counsel argue both that the judge did not abuse his discretion and that the Second Circuit has no appellate jurisdiction. In one nugget from the brief, pro bono counsel contend that "[t]he SEC's and Citigroup's concept of deference--in which courts would be effectively reduced to potted plants--would surely undermine the independence of the federal judiciary."