The Politics and Pathology of The House Litigation Addiction

Below is my column in The Hill newspaper on rejection of the lawsuit by the House of Representatives against the order issued by President Donald Trump to build the wall on the Southern border under the National Emergencies Act. I had previously testified against this lawsuit as a reckless and unnecessary move by the house. It is part of a litigation strategy that is clearly driven more by political than legal calculations.

Here is the column:

With a crucial defeat in federal court this week, one would expect the House Democrats to be embarrassed at losing long protected precedent supporting legislative authority. Instead, as a federal judge in Washington was rejecting their challenge to the executive order by President Trump to build a wall along the southern border, House leaders have nonetheless moved ahead with an assortment of other inadvisable gambles.

The first step for compulsive gamblers is to admit they have a problem. Democrats have a serious and growing problem. The court defeat was particularly stinging to those of us who have tried repeatedly to persuade House Democrats to recognize that they are destroying themselves with reckless litigation. I have spent decades writing, testifying and litigating in support of congressional authority. A typical Madisonian scholar, I favor the legislative branch in court battles with the executive branch. We have seen the steady erosion of legislative power over the years, and many of us have indeed tried to steer Congress away from reckless litigation.

For more than a year, I have objected to a dangerous strategy of pursuing litigation in a wide array of conflicts with the Trump administration. As someone who has represented the House both as a body and as individual members, my concern was that Democrats would fritter away hard fought victories on congressional authority. Despite such warnings, politics has trumped good judgment. Now the bill has come due with the decision by District Judge Trevor McFadden tossing a challenge by Congress and, with it, the claim that the House has standing to bring such a lawsuit.

In a House Judiciary Committee hearing in February, I laid out various reasons why such a challenge was unnecessary and unwise. First, other groups could bring the lawsuit, so there was no need for the House to risk its hard fought precedent. As shown in California, various states secured an injunction against the construction of the border wall. While I remain skeptical of the prospect of barring all construction in the long term, the case showed why there was no need for the lawsuit.

Second, on the merits, it was doubtful that any court would protect the House from itself. Congress unwisely passed the National Emergencies Act, giving a president virtually unchecked authority. However, it reserved the ability to rescind such order. It did not do so in this case, for lack of votes in the Senate. Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and the House were asking a judge to order a result that they could not secure for themselves in Congress. Ironically, Pelosi was finally proven correct, in an odd way.

When I was asked to represent the House in challenging the payment of billions to insurance companies under the Affordable Care Act without congressional approval, Pelosi and all of the Democrats opposed the litigation. They supported the circumvention of Congress and opposed contempt proceedings for withholding information from Congress. In our litigation, Pelosi insisted that the case was guaranteed to fail and that President Obama should be able to unilaterally order the payments from the Treasury despite a refusal of Congress previously to do so.

We not only won the case but created long sought precedent recognizing the right of the House to bring such a lawsuit as a question of standing. In bringing this lawsuit over the southern border wall, Pelosi and House leaders have now allowed a bad case to make bad law and undermined future sessions of Congress in efforts to rein in executive overreach. It is a high price to pay for a courthouse photo opportunity and sound bite.

Just two weeks ago, I testified before the House Judiciary Committee and again begged members not to bring such lawsuits, including a threatened contempt action against Attorney General William Barr. I told Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) that, if the House repeated the arguments being made in the press, it was walking “into a world of hurt” in the further loss of needed precedent. Now, on the heels of this court defeat, the Democrats are proceeding with the equally dubious contempt action. Like bad gamblers playing in Las Vegas, the Democrats are doubling down on their losses, pledging to magnify their losses with an appeal and new challenges.

There also is the “preoccupation” of the Democrats with gambling. They are eager to get their base to forget about impeachment and instead focus on these litigation gambits. That is why there is still no initiation of an impeachment inquiry, as opposed to frivolous court and contempt actions. Then there are symptoms of gambling when “depressed” and concealing its costs. With a base angry over impeachment, these cases give temporary satisfaction even though they will achieve very little.

That is why pathological gamblers often show a “reliance on others to provide money to relieve desperate situations caused by gambling.” Rational legislators do not litigate close calls, and this was not a close call. Yet, at the very time that the court was dismissing it, Pelosi and House leaders were back at the poker table, scheduling a vote on contempt against Barr next week. It is a pattern that would make Pete Rose blush.

I have been one of the experts encouraging the House to use its contempt authority much more aggressively. However, this is not such a case. In the hearing two weeks ago, I testified that the contempt measure was facially and legally absurd, based on a subpoena demanding that Barr turn over a full unredacted report. Under federal law, Barr could not do so, and he could not release grand jury material to Congress without a court order.

At that hearing, Democratic witnesses and House members agreed that Barr could not release the full unredacted report. Thus, he is being held in contempt for not complying with a subpoena that he could not comply with under federal law. Moreover, Barr offered to appear before the House to answer questions, as he did before the Senate. But the House threw in an absurd condition that he would be questioned by House staff rather than members. The House Judiciary Committee insisted that it needed to do so because the special counsel report is evidently “complicated.”

Putting aside that neither the report nor the underlying laws are overly complicated, the Senate questioned Barr for hours. In the House request for testimony by special counsel Robert Mueller and others, there is no demand for staff questioning. Suddenly, the report is less complicated. In its decision, the federal court did precisely what I warned of in prior hearings. It not only dismissed the heart of the case for Congress but drove a stake into the heart of legislative standing, which is the essential element needed for the House to litigate such cases in the future.

All of this delights those who want an all-powerful executive branch, and House leaders are playing into the hands of advocates who have worked to create an uber-presidency. Litigating against executive power is like playing the house in poker as the odds always favor the casino. No one is more pleased than the White House to see Democrats back at the table.

Jonathan Turley is the Shapiro Professor of Public Interest Law at George Washington University. You can follow him on Twitter @JonathanTurley.

195 thoughts on “The Politics and Pathology of The House Litigation Addiction”

    1. She needs to contact Jussie Mullet’s friend in Chicago, Kim Foxx, that esteemed nonpartisan BLM Prosecutor, who made his legal problems vanish.

      New explanation for Jussie Smollett recusal from State’s Attorney Kim Foxx
      Foxx now says she recused herself because of rumors she was related to Smollett, and newly released text messages show she thought the rumors were “racist.”

  1. Jonathan Turley is a typical swamp HYPOCRITE!

    Turley stop referring to yourself as a “typical Madisonian scholar” you are not one or you would never have agreed to suck up to Barr.

    This is just another of your typical snitty columns.

    You have never tried to steer Congress you just ignore McConnell’s major responsibility in leading the repugs to give away power by failing to vote in prevention of this bogus emergency order.

    Turley’s record is right here he did not call out the repugs; he has the platform but he chooses not to use it to inform but instead helps with the cover up!

    Turley has so lost his way he couldn’t even both to do a column on the Seventy Fifth Anniversary of D-Day!

    Shame on you Turley history will remember.

  2. If only Hilary was president, then we wouldn’t have to go endure all this BS. After all Hilary is pure like Snow White.

  3. If only they would stop dragging their hooves and do it already.
    The House Dems more accurately resemble old, worn out, dejected wh8res desperate for relevancy. Reminds me of when Bill Clinton once said, in response to the rise of Newt Gingrich’ “Contract with America”, “I am still relevant”

    Nancy….you are thoroughly irrelevant. Do your job and impeach already.


    House Democrats officially introduce contempt resolution for Barr, McGahn

    The contempt resolution allows House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) to go to court to seek civil enforcement of the subpoena for Barr to turn over special counsel Robert Mueller’s unredacted report and underlying evidence, as well as for McGahn to provide documents and public testimony.

    The resolution also gives any committee chair the rare power to go to federal court to seek civil enforcement of subpoenas, both current and future orders, so long as they are granted approval by the Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group.

  4. I don’t want to see him impeached, I want to see him in prison.

    It would be a great photo op for President Trump to go visit her there along with the rest of her cohorts.

    1. Remembering when the White House was a wh@@re house and the Presidency a pha11ic symbol – Bill Clinton screwed Americans and the Left gleefully bent over

  5. Gee, Jon, just how many lawsuits have Trump and his pathetic “Administration” lost in Court? And you criticize the House for opposing his illegal diversion of funds for extending a border wall that he PROMISED Mexico would pay for, based on an alleged “emergency”? Did you hear him tell Teresa May she should sue the EU, and then coerce them into settling, because this is his strategy to get his way? Did you hear him get involved in British politics, which is a line no head of state ever crosses? How about calling Meghan Markle “nasty”, then trying to lie about it, and then, when caught in his lie by an audio recording, tried to Kellyanne spin the statement into a situation in which he was calling her comments about him “nasty”, but not her? How about lying about the hundreds of thousands of protesters, the lie about thousands of Brits cheering for him, or the outrageous insults directed toward the Mayor of London, into which he included Bill DiBlasio? How about dragging his useless children to a state dinner, something no other U.S. President has ever done?

    You keep repeating the Faux News spin on impeachment, trying to goad Democrats into going down this road, because you think it will help Trump. You have yet to comment on all of the incidents of obstruction described by Mueller.

    And, given all of the faux pas committed by Fatty in the past 3 days alone, I don’t understand why you still felt the need to throw some red meat to the Trumpsters. Are you now part of the Faux News daily affirmation?

    1. Turley has been begging for a job with FOX for quite a while now. He also seems to forget he was part of lawsuits against Obama. Just look over here Turley has gotten a lot of miles on hypocrisy.

      1. Well, that nut is making progress in her stages of grief. She’s acknowledging President Trump is our Head-of-State. So there’s that.

    2. Our republic has its system, parliamentary systems have theirs. Neither system is as simple-minded as you appear to be when your world-view is that of a cable tv series fan. The actions, reactions and consequences within law and statecraft are not those of a television writer. You may need to get out more without your minders.

  6. MY BOOMERANG won’t come back!
    My boomerang won’t come back.
    I’m .. the … biggest disgrace… to the Democrat space…
    My boomerang won’t come back.

    I can.. ride a kangeroo!
    Eat itShay too!
    Because.. when I vote.. my gun will float…
    And Trump will stay on boat.

  7. “I don’t want to see him impeached, I want to see him in prison.”

    – Nancy Pelosi, Politico

    Congress has irrationally and egregiously abused its power and weaponized itself and the legislative process in concert with Obama’s FBI, CIA, DNI, IRS and other “holdover” entities to falsely and maliciously prosecute a wholly innocent and duly elected President – there never was a crime and there still is no crime. The anti-Constitutional judicial branch has been “legislating from the bench” and by omission while conducting subversion and insurgency since 1861. Now Nancy Pelosi wants to throw President Trump in prison (where were Nancy Pelosi, Congress and the Supreme Court when the irrefutably ineligible Obama was unconstitutionally certified as a candidate by the states then unconstitutionally ensconced by the “deep state,” understanding that Obama can never be a “natural born citizen” as required by the Constitution)?

    America has been infected by improbable, guilt-ridden, self-hating “citizens” and invaded by allied, anti-American, foreign parasites. America is “auguring in” to the abyss of extinction (now we understand why the several States sharply restricted the vote as imperative “original intent”). Lincoln illegally and unconstitutionally suspended Habeas Corpus and the Constitution and ruled as a tyrannical dictator by executive order and proclamation to “Save the Union.” Whatever shall President Trump do to “Save the Republic” in the face of the current and burgeoning high criminality and subversion by Pelosi, Congress, FBI, CIA, DNI, IRS et al., and the general “fake news,” hysteria, incoherence, chaos, anarchy, subversion and insurgency?

    1. America has been infected by improbable, guilt-ridden, self-hating “citizens” and invaded by allied, anti-American, foreign parasites.

      Deport the infected (pathogenic) Americans you reference, which is 67% of the population, and beg immigrants to bring us their culture, religion, and traditional family values to save us from ourselves

      Immigrants built America starting with the illegal English immigrants of 1607 that landed at Jamestown and displaced the native Virginia Indians.

  8. Natural selection is a rational, empirical and verifiable explanation for On Origin of Species.
    [ god ] is magical thinking, superstition and group verifiable insanity.

    “… the character of his enemies.” A woman who stabs herself three times in the stomach has as her opposite or polar, perhaps, at best, a reasonable, common sense human being who is not self destructive.

    Not a high standard, obviously.

    Abraham Lincoln arrested Maryland legislators to prevent a secessionist-minded legislature from meeting, violated the habeas corpus rights of thousands, ordered* Chief Justice Roger Taney arrested, shut down newspapers, arrested and jailed editors without charges, trials or redress and, in January 1863, declared free all the slaves of every state still in rebellion against the Union.

    *Disputed; read the following:

    During Lincoln’s administration several prominent political adversaries were arrested, including Congressman Clement Vallandigham, a leading Copperhead, and at least one other federal judge – William Matthew Merrick of the United States Circuit Court for the District of Columbia – was placed under house arrest for defying the suspension. Several northern newspapers also publicly called for Taney’s arrest after the Merryman ruling.

    The Articles of Confederation had an Article which prohibited session. The Constitution of the United States has no Article prohibiting session.

    800 hundred plus years of English Common Law stands for the proposition that which is not prohibited is permitted.

    President Lincoln destroyed The Republic … created The Imperial President and Presidency … and proved political power exists and only exists at The End Of A Gun.

    dennis hanna

    1. Natural selection is a rational, empirical and verifiable explanation for On Origin of Species.

      Actually no. It is a better hypothesis than Adam and Eve, but it isn’t what you think it is. Point of fact: most Americans today are alive in spite of not being fit never mind their thoroughly undermine natural selection. The hypothesis of natural selection exists as a philosophy not as a science.

      If only Charlie’s ideas had been empirical and verifiable, most of the problems we have in Western Hemisphere today wouldn’t exist.

  9. Where Did Democrats Get The Idea To Sue?


    Professer Turley allows, that he was asked to represent the Republican House in a lawsuit against Obamacare. Yet Turley feels the current Democratic House should steer clear of lawsuits as political resistance. How odd that Turley has mixed feelings.

    Throughout this column Turley reprises his frequent role of ‘baffled observer’. Turley can’t understand why House Democrats would feel the need to bring litigation agains Trump.

    The truth is Republicans used extensive litigation as a weapon against Obama. Republican State Attorney Generals were often the facilitators of these suits. So ‘why’ is Turley baffled?? What goes around comes around. It shouldn’t surprise him in the least that Democrats want to flood Trump with litigation.

    Below is a Wikipedia article documenting all the litigation brought against Obama by various Republican-linked plaintiffs.

    1. Nice work PH.

      The Obama Troll Party is shocked! shocked I tell you to find gambling going on in Congress!

    2. Regarding Above:

      Here’s a Republican-Friendly source documenting the number of lawsuits brought against recent presidents going back to Reagan. It notes that the number of suits brought against Obama were quite high. But said article tries to argue those suits were justified on ‘constitutional grounds’.

      Funny how Republicans are forever claiming the constitution is on their side.

      1. P.H. To point out the hypocrisy of Turley’s post on this matter will have no effect on Trump’s crowd. Nor will they believe it.

    3. MBITRW, the ‘flood’ consisted of FOIA suits by Judicial Watch. (For the stuff that didn’t get the Bleach-Bit-and-Hammers treatment).

  10. When will Pelosi, Hillary, Schumer, Nadler, Schiff and all of the TDS “resist” fascists follow this woman’s lead?

    ‘I’m tired of living in Trump’s country.’ Woman stabs herself because of president, cops say

    A 46-year-old Palmetto woman decided life under President Donald Trump was too much to bear and stabbed herself in the stomach three times with a kitchen knife earlier this week in an attempt to end her life, according to the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office.

    “I heard the screaming,” said neighbor David Hopkins. “I’m paralyzed and in a wheelchair so it’s not easy to get up, but I heard someone screaming in a panic to call 911.”

    A Manatee County Sheriff’s Office deputy responded to the call, locating the woman outside of her house with “blood all over,” her legs, hands and face.

    The woman told the deputy, “I’m tired of living in Trump’s country, I’m tired of Trump being president.”

      1. FF Sierra,
        I haven’t had a chance to closely scan these comments threads for several days.
        Has anyone heard from Natacha recently? She somehow came to mind when I just read the story about unidentified woman who went bonkers with the knife.😉

    1. “The woman told the deputy, “I’m tired of living in Trump’s country, I’m tired of Trump being president.”
      Natural selection. And thank God for it.

    1. That’s one way. Not exhaustive.

      What galls me about the NeverTrump residue (e.g. Jonah Goldberg and David French) is that they yammer on as if Trump is some blot on public life without making an honest assessment of our political class generally. Yeah, Trump doesn’t measure up to Eisenhower. Eisenhower’s not the opposition. Andrew Cuomo and Jerrold Nadler are the opposition. Another thing that galls me is that people like French and Ross Douthat don’t recognize bravery under fire as a virtue.

      1. L4D says–Excerpted from the OP/ED linked above:

        Thus the dilemma for the would-be builders of a new conservatism. The rise of Trump has revealed the insufficiencies of the old synthesis, the fault lines within the right, the possibilities for a different fusion altogether. But the brute fact of President Trump, now and at least through 2020, may prevent the new conservatism from being more than a defensive formation, inherently alienating to the converts that it needs.

        [end excerpt]

        Well . . . No wonder French and Douthat gall Octuply Absurd. Trump or Bust leads inexorably to Bust. It’s just a question of when.

    2. “I think you judge a person by the character of his enemies. By that standard, Trump looks like the greatest leader since Lincoln.”

      He appears to be the bravest politician of recent decades as well and very much like Lincoln. He has been tested under the worst of fire facing it while continuing to move forward even with horrendous attacks on him and his family. He has guts and the ability to deal with the worst of situations. Compare him to Obama and Biden neither of which could withstand a slight breeze.

      1. He’s not much like Lincoln. He has heart, which is something I suspect Mitt Romney lacks and which I’m quite sure Cocaine Mitch and Paul Ryan lack. The Bushes (esp. papa) had a history of bravery in the face of threats to life and limb, but both (esp papa) seemed vulnerable in the face of other sorts of threat.

        The smart money says when faced with something like the Kavanaugh controversy, Mitt Romney would have caved, as would George W. Bush, just the way Gov. Holcomb of Indiana did when one of his nominees was faced with a campaign of defamation. The muh principles crowd of establishment Republican pundits is incensed that no one listens to them anymore. Look at their response to the Kavanaugh controversy, and you can see why they don’t merit much attention.

        1. DSS, Mespo found Trump Lincolnesque in his enemies. I found it so in his political bravery and moving forward to his target despite the hits thrown. These are two important comparisons but no one here is saying that Trump is a clone of Lincoln.

          1. If there is to be any comparison with Lincoln, it is in response to our divided house. Lincoln dealt with slavery; Trump is dealing with the corrupt administrative state brought on by progressivism. Trump has been fighting a different kind of civil war, but it is a fight for the soul of this country. Right now his best general is Bill Barr. This war is about to get very real once the IG report comes out.

            1. Hmmm. not bad. It appears Bill Barr is Trump’s Ulysses S. Grant. We now have three strong characteristics of President Trump, all of them very favorable.Good addition Olly.

            2. Olly, that is some hilarious s..t! Hey, I think he’s right there with Washington, Ghandi, Joan d’Arc, Nelson Mandela, and Moses. Rarely has the earth been favored with such a heroic, selfless, and principled leader.I mean except for the p…y grabbing.

  11. If the choice is between unwise congressional litigation and outright impeachment, it looks like impeachment wins. Speaker Pelosi is quoted as telling House Committee leaders “I don’t want to see him impeached, I want to see him in prison.” So far, she has not denied saying this. If true, Pelosi has boxed herself in. If she is saying it is better for the country to be led by a criminal than for Congress to impeach him, she’s crazy if she thinks the American people are going to let that go. No democrat calling for impeachment will fail to bring it up, and she’ll look incredibly stupid if she tries to make her position defensible.

    1. Choosing the lesser of two evils only makes the chooser a supporter of evil. But there are always three choices. Correct, Incorrect and Compromise. Making a total of one good choice and two bad choices and from that comes the two evils concept in an attempt to make it somehow acceptable.

      Proof postive from their own pens that Objectivism and Morals win over Subjectivism and no values every time.

      These persons cannot even apply the law as written so why should we support the in their ridiculous and incorrect versions?

    2. This is only going to give Justin Amash more fuel for his own road show in which he gets to play the grown-up in the room (which, compared to the House Democratic leadership, he is). Amash, at least, points to the contents of the Mueller report which can be construed as supporting impeachment and calls for it – knowing that it won’t fly in a Republican Senate, but seemingly courting a Libertarian Party nomination.

      The Democrats dug their own logical grave back when they insisted they’d accept Mueller’s conclusions, no matter what (when the auguries favored a Trump indictment).

      Mueller followed two DoJ legal counsel rulings and a court brief by then-Solicitor General Robert Bork arguing against his ability to indict a sitting President, doing what two other special counsels did (Leon Jaworski in Watergate, Ken Starr for Clinton) and referring the matter to Congress for action. And a divided Congress won’t act in the way Mueller apparently wishes they would.

      So, the House non-leadership breaks their own word and won’t accept Mueller’s clear statement that they must pursue what he refused to, and try Donald Trump. Who benefits?

      The case for any illegality by Trump at all is weaker than the developing case against Barack Obama for weaponizing Federal law enforcement and the nation’s spy shops against Trump. Congress just doesn’t have a chance in court to do anything but try to gather up the rags of dignity they gleefully shed giving Obama authority to do their jobs, and repeal the National Emergencies Act. Something tells me the Senate won’t cooperate.

      All the Democrats can do is whip up innuendo and rumor against Trump for the 2020 campaign.

      At which point, all the RNC must do is use any of a number of photo-ops of Joe Biden pawing girls and women in public for a 30-second spot with Maurice Chevalier singing “Thank Heaven for Little Girls” on the sound track.

      Don’t blame me, that was Barry Levinson’s idea, from “Wag the Dog”.

  12. Dems have wasted 2 years on an investigation to smear, defame, and harass their political opponents, and many, especially the media, nodded approval. Everyone knew that the allegations were fallacious (likely Bob Mueller knew after just a few months) but the intent was purely vindictive politics. It continued in their smears of Covington Catholic, Brett Kavanaugh, and hundreds of others.

    In an attempt to be respectful of the law, conservatives didn’t fight back. It’s time for ALL of us to call the Dems what they are – a destructive conspiracy who will use everything in their power to destroy civil society, ruin those who oppose them, and who seek total control & power. They will lie and cheat in any way they can to do this. They are essentially a bunch of fascists who believe their corrupt ends justifies their corrupt means. It’s impossible to treat the Nadlers, Pelosi’s, Schumers, Schiffs, Swalwells, AOCs with any respect because their motives are so obviously corrupt. It’s time to call them what we’ve known they were all along.

  13. The House and Senate did pass legislation to block the boarder wall and Trump vetoed it. It is not reasonable nor in line with the constitution to require a 2/3 majority to block an illegal act from the president.

    1. Why is it ‘illegal’? It’s a public works project meant to defend the border. Does Trump need legislative authorization every time a soldier sneezes?

    2. in line with his copmplete disregard for the constitution whenever it’s an obstacle to his cult leader or other creeps like McConnell (absurd tried to defend SC seat stealing), he misses the point that the Congress, which has the power of the purse, fully vetted and defeated absurd’s Dear Leaders wall scam weeks – maybe days – before he announced his “emergency” end run. If this stands, I can’t wait to see absurd’s hair catch fire when President AOC uses this tactic.

      1. in line with his copmplete disregard for the constitution…

        The people of San Francisco are looking for Nancy Pelosi due to her disregard for reality in her district. They have a gift for her, if she ever gets around to touching base with reality.

      2. There was no Supreme Court seat stealing. Even if the Senate wasted its time with hearings, there’s no way Obama’s nominee would have been confirmed.

        1. J, the seat was stolen and the entire list of GOP Senators complicity followed McConnell’s lead and refused their constitutional duties. They should be locked up, censured, or impeached. The court should right now be a liberal court and it is illegitimate by virtue of this theft and denial of the people’s will through the constitutional power of the President to appoint justices and the Senate’s duty to advise and consent.

          Obama’s choice was widely praised by GOP Senators when he was approved for his District Court seat and if he was denied, it would have been a purely partisan maneuver.

          More importantly, that egg was broken, and there will be payback down the road. Enjoy it.

          1. there will be payback down the road

            Indeed. It appears Mueller is now in the crosshairs by his former targets and they are gunning for him. Perhaps you can create a Gofundme page for him? Make sure to use an anonymous IP address because…well, you know what disclosing your IP address can mean down the road. Darrens sends his regards.

            ‘Scorched Earth’: Mueller’s Targets Speak Out

            Now that Mueller has ended his probe finding no election collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, 10 witnesses and targets of his sprawling, $35 million investigation agreed to speak with RealClearInvestigations because they are no longer in legal jeopardy. They include several people who became household names during the two-year probe – including George Papadopoulos, Carter Page and Roger Stone – as well as lesser-known figures whose lives were also upended and finances imperiled when they came into Mueller’s crosshairs. Only three of the 10, Papadopoulos, Stone and a political consultant named Sam Patten, were charged with a crime. Patten received three years probation but no jail time for failing to register as a foreign agent; Papadopoulos served 12 days for lying to federal agents; and Stone awaits trial on false statements, witness-tampering and obstruction charges.

            Their firsthand accounts pull back the curtain on the secret inner workings of the Mueller probe, revealing how the special counsel’s nearly two dozen prosecutors and 40 FBI agents used harshly aggressive tactics to pressure individuals to either cop to crimes or implicate others in felonies involving collusion.


        2. That non effort clearly demonstrated in modern terms why we should not only reject sociaism but reject the Non Existent Democracy. What was the big clue. The demonstration of Mobocracy the founders warned us against and voted to reject nine times.

      3. The difference is simple but not for simpletons. One followed is the duly Constituted LAW and the rest is some foreign ideology of use only to mensheviks.

      4. More talk from Anon. “copmplete disregard for the constitution ”

        Tell us Anon, in your own words how, in this case under discussion, he disregarded the Constitution? Turley leans towards Congressional power so I have to consider what Turley said to have a lot of weight.

  14. Investigations are fun

    The FEC is examining financial discrepancies at a political action committee where former bartender Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez served on the board after an outside watchdog group raised questions about the group’s spending activities. Her chief of staff, Saikat Chakrabarti, co-founded Justice Democrats and also served on the board.

    “None of this makes any sense,” said Adav Noti, the senior director of the Campaign Legal Center and a former FEC lawyer. “I can’t even begin to disentangle that. They’re either confused or they’re trying to conceal something.”

    Most importantly, does AOC know how to make a cocktail called “Harvey Wallbanger”?

    1. Nor can she attempt an Arnold Palmer? Why Not? She ensured the bar be closed and all of them lost their jobs.

  15. Pathology – pa·thol·o·gy (pă-thŏl′ə-jē)

    The scientific study of the nature of disease and its causes, processes, development, and consequences.

    Causes: the innate depravity of man, self-deification, pride
    Processes: main stream media enablers, internet forums, slothfulness, gluttony, wrath
    Development: unregulated and the spreading to other tissues…metastasis
    Consequences: Death

    Memo to John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and George Washington: your US experiment has been an abject failure. What was your Plan B?

    “You have made us for yourself, Lord, and our hearts are restless until they rest in you,” Saint Augustine, Confessions, Chapter 1

  16. What’s amazing about this is that it indicates the Democratic Party at it’s apex and center is a decayed corpse. It has no other institutional purpose but to harass the opposition in various ways and maintain certain crooked patron-client relations. Yet, this zombie political party manages to retain the loyalty of 1/2 the population. I don’t think this will end well.

    1. TIAx8:
      You can’t be a’gin something forever. At some point, you have to show your agenda and the Dims have a corpse agenda full of stumbling programs with decaying results. The tilt towards socialism is as much desperation as ideological. They need something and all the new stuff is taken by populists like Trump. So you’re right the Left is dying and their death throes are what we’re experiencing. Sort of a tour of the La Brea Tar Pits during the Pleistocene.

      1. So you say, but I’m guessing the Democratic Party has crafted a perpetual motion machine based on modes of identity politics.

        1. TIAx8:
          But how long can that last? At some point you run out of groups you can’t service with political patronage since you’re out of power. They look elsewhere or dissolve politically. Where’s that AIDS lobby anymore? Or the BLM for that matter?

          1. Maybe. I don’t think successful identity politics necessarily requires the distribution of material benefits. Democrats have held on to the Jewish vote for a century or more, even though there’s nothing in it for American Jews materially and hasn’t been in any systematic way since the end of the War (if not earlier). Making a rough observation of voting patterns among blacks, I’d say they’re driven much more by brand loyalty, deals between pols and the opinion-leader element in the black population, and by responses to emotional validation than they are by actual material benefit flow. If you can hold on to a voting bloc while ruining the quality of public services for half their members, and can do so for 50+ years, I’m going to guess that their adherence isn’t responding to material benefit flow, but to something else.

            1. L4D says–He who refuses to remove the bandages from his eyes would have the rest of us believe that being White is not a political identity, that being Male is not a political identity, that being Christian is not a political identity and that being conservative is not a political identity. We are supposed to believe these things because otherwise The Republican party would have been playing identity politics with White Male Christian conservatives for the past 90+ years.

              And that’s before Pwesident Twump came along. Don’t ever forget Pwesident Twump. You, Wascowee Wabbits, you.

            2. DSS, good points. How long do we expect any government to survive? Not forever so I don’t think we expect parties to necessarily survive the distance. In essence you seem to be adopting the advice of an economist that once answered the question, “How much money need be spent on entitlements and things of that nature?” No one could come up with a good answer, but his answer rang true. “As much as needed to prevent a revolution”.

              It appears that is what you are saying here. You require enough satisfaction of ~50% of the population and can change the mix of voting blocks one can hang on almost indefinitely, but I will add as long as there is cooperation from the mass media.

      2. Mespo, thanks for the highly entertaining conversation with the equally deluded absurd. In case you have not noticed, it is not the Democrats who have not won a popular vote for president in 6 of the last 7 elections, nor is their base a demographically challenged and aging slice of America.

        As to policy, and as he strives everyday to continue, Trump is the subject and item of focus for both parties with the Democrats having the advantage of not having to drop every supposed principle – other than tax cuts and nut job abortion activism (see yesterdays cave man ending of fetal tissue research by your cult leader) – they stood for to stay in line with a cult figure. One might notice the dearth of other coherent policies of the GOP – excepting continuing their trolling of Obama and the Democrats consistent and continued support for universal health care, gun control, immigration reform, voting rights, environmental controls and planning for climate change, reestablishing our tradition of alliances with fellow democracies, especially in Europe, and of course the respect the our allies previously held for us which Trump though his low life behavior has completely flipped. Did I mention that the Democratically controlled House has continued passing legislation while the President and the Senate – remember them – haven’t done s..t since the budget busting tax cuts

        Anyway, keep these colloguys coming, Lot’s of fun!

        1. it is not the Democrats who have not won a popular vote for president in 6 of the last 7 elections,

          Since 1966, the Democratic candidate has won a popular majority 3x, and one of those times it required that every possible contingency break in their candidate’s favor. The Obama years left your tallies in state and federal legislatures at their lowest point in 90 years. You get what you want through judicial decrees. Enjoy your ‘triumphs’.

          1. Dumping the electoral college has been tried over 700 times and never made it out of congress. It has never been subitted by the States nor the citizens directly. It has been the target of illegal end runs by the winner take all types and that’s all that has been momentarily successful. And now they want to try a lawsuit? How about a lawsuit forcing them to follow the law for a change?



      CUI BONO

      that will fill in a lot of blanks i am sure
      remember politicians are lawyers and law is a business
      gotta get paid

    3. Oh I don’t know. we Constitutional Centrists and former military put together the largest block of voters and chose Trump to expose and destroy the left and damn if they didn’t join in the effort.

      Looks like it will end extremely well without one shot being fired

      Ballots Not Bullets.

  17. “Litigating against executive power is like playing the house in poker as the odds always favor the casino.”
    It’s not merely pathological. It’s grossly unethical legally and seditious politically.

    By the way, as a casino owner Trump undoubtedly it’s not poker where the odds are relatively close and skill plays a role. Rather it’s one number straight roulette where belief that the odds of the spin ending your way are best calculated as dumb and dumber.

    1. Poker is a really bad example for that analogy: Casinos lose money at Poker tables because payers play against eachother, not the house. The house takes a rake (which is a percentage of the pot, up to a maximum) that might not even cover the dealer’s wage.

      1. well said

        but the rake here comes from the Democrat law firms getting paid to run these games
        they’re the dealers

        article III judges are the house; they’re the ownership of the casino

        so they encourage this sort of gambling

          1. he’s an embarrassment and they want to shut him up is how i take it.

            this particular license disciplinary procedure described in your article, is not familiar to me. it may be a california novely. lots of things in CA are novel.

            “petition to enroll Avenatti in involuntary inactive status pending etc etc” is not anything my flyover state bar would file against a lawyer. and they pull and suspend licenses all the time for far lesser things than alleged against Avenatti. mostly former clients or pissed off adversaries file a beef and then they work through the beef and maybe bring charges and that’s all tried before the state sup court which always has the final word.

            law practice in general is regulated by each state’s supreme court and they can do whatever they like with a petition before them. they’re the final word on law practice and in most instances not even the US Supreme courts can gainsay them

            I’m sure you know that but just a little for the readers

    2. Exec wouldn’t have that much power if the lazy left hadn’t ceded even demanded they take over much of the work of the Congress.

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