Fighting Monsters: How Democrats are Adopting Rationales Once Used Against the Left to Silence orJail Critics

Below is my column in USA Today on adoption of some Democrats of arguments and rationales once used against the left to silence or jail them. Pundits and politicians are becoming the very thing that they have long condemned in this age of rage. It is realization of Nietzsche’s monster theory.

Here is the column:

“Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster.” Those words from philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche capture the fear that the struggle against the ideas and people we oppose will twist us into the very thing we hate.

For Democrats, that moment has come in an age of rage against former President Donald Trump in particular and conservatives in general. It’s an age when reason and restraint are strangers.

In various areas, Democrats have embraced repellent concepts in the effort to silence or even jail their opponents. What is most striking is that legal arguments now used by the left were once used against the left.

Power of the state used to suppress information

As someone who was raised in a liberal, politically active Democratic family in Chicago, one of the greatest disappointments of my lifetime has been to watch the Democratic Party fight against free speech, pushing both censorship and blacklisting.

Here are a few examples:

∎ Democratic leaders for years called on social media companies to ban or suppress those with opposing views. As shown in the Twitter Files, there was a secret effort by the FBI and other agencies to engage in what I called “censorship by surrogate.”

∎ President Joe Biden declared that social media companies were “killing people” by refusing to censor more citizens. Biden administration officials followed suit. Robert Califf, commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, even declared that “misinformation” was a medical risk.

∎ Jen Easterly, who heads the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, extended her agency’s mandate over critical infrastructure to include “our cognitive infrastructure.” The resulting censorship efforts included combating “malinformation” – described as information “based on fact, but used out of context to mislead, harm, or manipulate.”

∎ New York Democrats proposed limiting speech as a way of protecting democracy, and former Clinton administration Labor Secretary Robert Reich suggested free speech could be a form of “tyranny.”

∎ A federal judge recently found that the Biden administration had orchestrated “the most massive attack against free speech in United States history.” Yet, 70% of Democrats still support speech limits.

Why ‘fire in crowded theater’ quote is misguided

One of the most telling moments came in a congressional hearing in February when I warned of the dangers of repeating the abuses of prior periods like the Red Scare, when censorship and blacklisting were the norm. In response, Rep. Dan Goldman, D-New York, invoked Oliver Wendell Holmes’ view that free speech does not give a person the right to yell fire in a crowded theater. In other words, citizens had to be silenced because their views are dangerous to others.

When I attempted to point out that the line came from a case justifying the imprisonment of socialists for their political viewpoints, Goldman cut me off and “reclaimed his time.”

Other Democrats have used the line as a mantra, despite its origins in one of our most abusive anti-free speech periods during which the government targeted political dissidents on the left.

Many today dismiss free speech concerns over the prosecution of Trump and his aides for their actions in challenging the 2020 election.

Like others, I opposed those actions and rejected Trump’s claims of systemic voting fraud. However, some of us have great reservations about the criminalization of such challenges, particularly under the type of sweeping conspiracy theory put forward by Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis.

While the Georgia indictment contains serious charges related to some individuals, the effort to bag Trump through a sweeping racketeering claim could lead in the future to the criminalization of election challenges by both parties. At one time, such a prosecution would have raised a modicum of concern on the left.

Democrats previously opposed certification of Republican victories without supporting evidence and Democratic lawyers even challenged Republican victories on the basis of voting machines flipping the election outcome. Yet, Democrats are blind to the implications of such prosecutions for our democratic system.

Democrats’ dangerous effort to bar Trump from ballot with 14th Amendment

Perhaps the most dangerous movement is an effort to extend the 14th Amendment to bar Trump from the 2024 ballot. Democrats, and some Republicans, have insisted that the 14th Amendment prevents Trump from running, given his support for “insurrection or rebellion.” Yet, Trump has not been charged with incitement, let alone insurrection or rebellion.

In support of barring Trump from the ballot, it’s been falsely claimed that the New Mexico Supreme Court relied on the 14th Amendment as the basis for upholding the removal of a local official from office for participation in the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol.

It is telling that New Mexico District Judge Francis Mathew began his decision in the case with a long quotation from Judge Peter Stenger Grosscup, who in 1894 cracked down on union organizers as rebels and insurrectionists.

Grosscup not only declared union organizers to be insurgents but also added (as Mathew approvingly quoted) that “every person who knowingly incites, aids, or abets them, no matter what his motives may be, is likewise an insurgent.” Grosscup called for federal troops to put down union organizers and later resigned under allegations of improper conduct.

None of this seems to penetrate Democrats’ rage. In pursuing Trump, progressives are citing the same legal authority once used to justify imprisoning socialists and union organizers. And like their anti-free speech predecessors, they’re blind to the implications of these arguments.

They are transfixed on the enemy at hand rather than what they risk becoming themselves.

In warning about the danger of fighting monsters, Nietzsche added that, “If you gaze long enough into an abyss, the abyss will gaze back into you.”

Jonathan Turley, a member of USA TODAY’s Board of Contributors, is the Shapiro professor of Public Interest Law at George Washington University. Follow him on Twitter @JonathanTurley

232 thoughts on “Fighting Monsters: How Democrats are Adopting Rationales Once Used Against the Left to Silence orJail Critics”

  1. Jonathan: I guess my earlier comment about Elon Musk’s platform providing a home for anti-Semites was prescient. Sadly, we see anti-Semitic expression right her on your blog. Michael T. Ejercito says: “Free speech includes peaceful expressions of Judenhass”. Anonymous(the lesser) liked Michael’s post so much he gave it a thumbs up with “+100”.

    For those not familiar with the express “Judenhass” it is the German word for hatred of Jews–hateful and emotional anti-Semitism. Ejercito seems to thinks the “peaceful” hatred of Jews is OK. We all know what “Judenhass” led to–the Holocaust and the killing of “peaceful” Jewish worshippers in Pittsburgh.

    It looks like both you and Elon Musk are allowing anti-Semites on your platforms. Would you allow “peaceful” expressions of hatred of Black people to appear on your blog? I doubt it. In your “Civility” rule you say you will delete “openly racist comments”.So why make an exception for openly anti-Semitic comments?

    1. Someone tell this idiot that Jew is not a race, and semitic is an obsolete term.

      Calling people racist without a basis is a violation of the civility rules, Dennis.

      1. Twitter readily censors content in foreign countries, and it also censors legal speech in the US. Only an ignorant person thinks it’s “the free speech wing of the free speech party.”

    2. “. . . anti-Semitic expression right her [sic] on your blog. Michael T. Ejercito says: ‘Free speech includes peaceful expressions of Judenhass’.”

      Yet again, the Left’s revolting tactic of lying about the opposition, in order to smear.

      Suppose I write: Free speech includes peaceful expressions of anti-capitalism.

      Does that make me an anti-capitalist? Obviously not.

    1. If all the ADL did or does is “point out” this or that fact, then it has nothing to worry about in a defamation suit, since truth is always a defense to defamation. Question: does the ADL limit itself to “pointing out” things, or does it go further? If the former, then on what grounds does Musk think he is entitled to damages?

  2. The modern DNC is just whole hog a socialist/communist/oligarch party. in yon olden times, it would have been dubbed a monarchy party (we do not ‘elect’, we follow blood lines). One might be less disappointed if they would just say as much. The real question is: since this USA is still at least in theory a Constitutional Republic: do we the people have the wherewithal to fight it? An awful lot of dem voters still seem to think they are voting against something like Jim Crow even though they are members of the party that conceived of Jim Crow in the first place. I don’t know how we untangle this. It is a Gordian Knot in the truest sense, and likely by design. When even the National Archives has been captured by the regime and refuses to release anything, these are really valid questions, particularly given that most of us know better. They insult your intelligence, and they do not care about your freedom. This is no longer an intellectual exercise. If the dem regime even hints at trying to revive covid restrictions – thing are going to get ugly. Very, very ugly.

    1. James,
      Well, we have seen some mask mandates, but quickly changed their policies after push back.
      I have seen a lot of “I will not comply!”
      However, in some Blue states (shocker) they have mandated masks for school children.
      How will this play out?

  3. Jonathan: For all your claims to be a “free speech” absolutist you have missed what is going on over at Elon Musk’s “X”, formerly Twitter. Since Musk took over the platform he has made it a home for racists, anti-semites and neo-nazis. You seem to think Musk is doing a good job with “free speech”. But now Musk is turning his back on the 1st Amendment.

    Musk now says he is going to sue the Anti-Defamation League for defamation. Why? Because the ADL has criticized Musk for restoring accounts for people on the bottom of the food chain– those that spew out hate speech every day. Musk claims the ADL’s complaints have cause his company’s massive loss of value. Musk says he wants Tucker Carlson to join his lawsuit because of ADL’s “unfounded accusations” against the former Fox host.

    Now, if Musk is really a “free speech” advocate why would he want to sue ADL for exercising their “free speech” rights? Good Q. Musk is blaming ADL for X’s loss of value up to 66%. The real reason X has tanked is because advertisers are avoiding X like the plague–exactly because Musk has decided to make X a free platform for al sorts of hate speech. Can’t blame that on the ADL.

    So Musk wants to sue the messenger. He is going full DJT. If you don’t like what people and organizations say about you–well, you sue them. All of DJT’s defamation suits have been shot down by the courts–including his latest defamation lawsuit against E. Jean Carroll. Musk’s suit against ADL will also fail because “free speech” works both ways!. Any comment?

        1. Groups of people cannot be “defamed.” See Joseph Tanenhaus, Group Libel, 35 CORNELL L.Q. 261, 266 (1949-1950) (“To date there has not been a single case holding a person civilly responsible for the defamation of a large collectivity[.]”, quoted in S. Barbas, “The Rise and Fall of Group Libel: The Forgotten
          Campaign for Hate Speech Laws”, 54-1 Loyola University Chicago Law Journal (2022)

          1. You think of Twitter as a group of people rather than a business? You do understand that Musk is the one suing for defamation, right?

            1. You said: “Musk allows hate speech defamation” Hate speech, if directed to a group, cannot be “defamation.” The words do not match.

              1. No, I said “Since when is pointing out the fact that Musk allows hate speech defamation?” (italics added to make it easier for you to understand the actual meaning of the question I asked) You misunderstood the question.

                1. The words might not be defamatory, but the intent is. That is what the public needs to recognize. People like ATS defame and accuse others while barely crossing the line of libel. Only later does one realize the intent and that what was said was untrue.

                  Adding up the many comments made and putting them together is where the defamation case exists. That is the problem with blogs of this nature. Most people do not look back in history, made more difficult when the ATS types hide themselves under anonymous names.

                  If it looks or sounds like an ATS type, it frequently is. From that information, one can recognize defamation and lies.

                  1. Does Musk allow people to deny God exists?


                    Since denying that God exists is the ultimate hate speech, it is absolutely true that Musk allows hate speech on X!

                    Truth can’t be defamation.

                    1. I bet you deny the existence of the Hindu gods. Do you consider that hate speech too?

    1. Did someone say whacko??? Wow!

      The methane from Denni’s keyboard diarrhea must be causing hallucinations now.

    2. The old wave-the-hate-speech-flag-to-promote-censorship trick. Again, the Left’s instincts are always totalitarian. News flash: hate speech, besides often being in the eye of the beholder, is legal. News flash: Musk has every right to allow hate speech on X – besides the fact hate speech is often in the eye of the beholder.

      The “hate speech” flag is always flown by censors, totalitarians, authoritarians, and other scurrilous knaves as a means of exerting or concentrating their power. I’d rather live with some speech I’m a little uncomfortable with than give anyone in government the power to determine what speech qualifies as hate speech and censor it.

      1. Yes, Musk has a legal right to host hate speech.

        The ADL also has a legal right to point out that Musk is hosting hate speech, and companies have a legal right to stop advertising on Twitter because they don’t want their ads appearing next to hate speech.

        1. And x has a legal right to this, and y has a legal right to that, and z has a legal right to the other . . . zzzzzzzzz.

            1. What? I have not mentioned the suit at all, but it seems to be an obsession of yours. You are either projecting or hallucinating.

              1. I pointed out that the ADL also has a legal right to point out that Musk is hosting hate speech, and companies have a legal right to stop advertising on Twitter because they don’t want their ads appearing next to hate speech. That was directly commenting on the suit. You seemed to agree that these things are legal (and boring, hence your “zzzzzzzzz”), and they imply that Musk will lose his suit.

          1. Here’s an example of a tweet with hate speech that Twitter leaves up:
            “N e g r o e s = garbage humans, if they can even be considered that
            “Jews = evil incarnate, their nature is at the core of f a g g o t r y, and the antithesis of the Aryan
            “Non-whites = genetic dregs of mongrelization, and all of the above muse be deported from White Nations immediately!”

            It’s views like this that contributed to the Holocaust.

            [Darren, I don’t agree with any of that tweet, but am posting it so that Sam sees an example of the hate speech on Twitter.]

                1. “Do you not know how to use a dictionary . . .”

                  No. I was hoping that maybe you could help me.

                  But I guess not.

                  1. a) I don’t believe you.
                    b) Just do an internet search on define hate speech and that search will pull up both dictionary definitions and other discussions of the meaning. (Note: this is a form of help.)

      2. Denying that God exists is the ultimate misinformation, ultimate hate speech, and ultimate defamation. Atheism doesn’t belong anywhere.

          1. Can you prove god exists?

            yup. God is in the molecules! I always say that to students, patients and friends.

            The Language of God: A Scientist Presents Evidence for Belief
            by Dr Francis Collins, MD, PhD, Geneticist Physician

            Try reading an article on epigenetics, transcription factors, chromatin remodeling, etc. We have no idea how epigenetics works yet here we believe in epigenetics. Start with the following dated article published in 2015, a veritable dinosaur in the chronology of genetics. Chances are you wont understand it, nor will most physicians. It is that complex and beyond our understanding. see where this is going?

            Roadmap Epigenomics Consortium; Kundaje A, Meuleman W, Ernst J, Bilenky M, et al. Integrative analysis of 111 reference human epigenomes. Nature. 2015 Feb 19;518(7539):317-30. doi: 10.1038/nature14248.

            cited over 4000 times in less than 8 years, an extraordinary amount. See how much of it makes sense to you

            TL;DR: get off of your high horse about proof.

            “Faith is to believe what you do not yet see; the reward for this faith is to see what you believe.”

            ― Saint Augustine

            1. “. . . get off of your high horse about proof.”

              While at the same time, he (allegedly) provides “evidence” for the existence of God. Then in the next breath relies on faith, which is the antithesis of evidence and proof.

              Pick a lane.

    3. Dennis, with all the air time you get, you better believe professor Turley believes in free speech.

    4. Dennis – there is a claim that the ADL, financially backed by intelligence agencies, is pushing for a boycott of advertising on Twitter. X’s advertising has fallen in half or thereabouts. That is not a question of “free speech,” but of survival. Of course, the refusal of Twitter to censor speech is one of the reasons it is the target of the ADL and other NGO groups.

    5. “If you don’t like what people and organizations say about you–well, you sue them.”

      Better yet: If you don’t like the political opposition, indict them.

        1. I would defend atheism as much as I would any other religion . . . except wokeism. That crap is pure evil.

        2. I’m no atheist, but atheist have rights too. The problem with free speech is that we have to listen to other peoples BS and not just our own. I also believe we have to let some people say some awfully hurtfull things and let everyone judge them by what comes out of their mouths. We don’t get to say who can speak and who can’t.

          1. Independent Bob,
            They have the right to be heard.
            I have the right to ignore them or walk away.
            Significant difference between most rational, logical, critical thinking people and woke leftists.

  4. Beware. The leftist on this blog will do anything and everything to get you off the subject. The subject at hand is the right to free speech. There is one party and only one party today that wants to limit your right to freely speak your mind. The other party is the party defending your right to free speech. It’s very simple and all the deflection to Trump won’t change reality. The party that says they are against slavery wants to make slaves of us all. Just as in the days of slavery they want to tell you to get back in line and shut up. As in the past their ample use of the whip if necessary is evident.

  5. Walt Kelley, the late comic strip writer of “Pogo,” illustrated the concept even better then Nietzsche when he said: “We have met the enemy, and he is us.”

  6. Jonathan: Why do you continue to allow me to post on this blog? Do you think I have a patina of brown in the keyboard diarrhea I post here? For some reason I can’t help posting my narcissistic, self agrandizing rants here every day. I am an unrepentant liar and a coward. Need proof? Here are a few examples.

    1. I called a commentor a racist, and gave no basis for my assertion, even when asked to do so. I consider myslf above having to explain when I violate the civility rules, but whine like a little beotch when someone calls me out.

    2. I plagiarise much of what I post here, giving no credit for the site that I lift the words from, which makes me a thief of intellectual property. One of these copy and pastes resulted in my assertion that an “ideal athlete is 6’3″ and 176-215 pounds. I don’t know how in the world the LA Rams ever could have paid Aaron Donald all that money…I mean, that slob is 6’1” and 280 pounds!!! He’s no athlete! So he can run 100 yards in the time it takes my puny a$$ to run 40, so what???

    3. I have defended DA Fani Willis over and over again. Not to be repetitive, but she gonna spank that fanny for ol’ Donny. So she can’t spell RICO, or know “nothin’ ’bout that computer stuff”, big deal? So she call the Fulton County election handlers out until she found out Biden won…big deal. So she has questioned election results over and over again, EVEN AFTER THEY WERE CERTIFIED, big deal? You aint no democrat if you don’t agree with me. It aint about free speech, dammit!!!! (STAMPING MY FEET)

    4. You call “dangerous” any attempt to bar DJT from the ballot under the 14th Amendment with good reason. Because a state attorney general deciding who is eligible for president is about as undemocratic as it gets. But I’m all for it when it nets the result I want, because I am also a fraud. I’m too stupid and blinded by TDS to recognize the potential fallout from such a precedent.

    For those on the blog who still think I’m not a whacko….oh, who am I kidding, they all know, and always have.

    There’s a red under my bed
    And there’s a little orange man in my head
    And he said, “You’re not going crazy, you’re just a bit sad
    ‘Cause there’s a man in ya, gnawing ya, tearing ya into two”

  7. In an advanced society the insane are given pity and mercy.
    Their humanity is acknowledged and they are given a place in society where they can receive support, help, safety and protection, as well as a place they can thrive while society is protected from them and their unfortunate nature.
    In an advanced society, the insane are NOT, given a position of absolute power over others and the means to disrupt said others lives and kill them.
    Because eventually they can and surely will.

    In today’s declining American Society, not only have the rogue gov derp state globalist given the keys to the power element of this country to the insane to destructively fashion and shape a totalitarian kingdom, they have socially engineered the innate goodness in sane people, to accept and allow this travesty in the name of diversity, equity and inclusion.
    Rogue derp state gov, has as well, taken the goodness that lives in good hearted  sane People, and turned it against them, by convincing and forcing them to submit to the insane untenable demands of socially engineered back up generations of socially engineered into insanity denizens, that have been created to populate America’s post-Constitutional kingdom. 
    Such submission REQUIRES the forfeiture of Constitutional Rights and Protections in order for the mission of a totalitarian United States to be complete.
    It also requires the subjugated to stand down while derp states armed soldiers are and sent out on their mission, to attack, subdue, drive out and kill any vestiges of individual freedom within the sane normal people, who just want to live their lives in freedom and peaceful coexistence as they see fit.

    Thanks to the derp state uniparty, the peaceful coexistence option does not now  and never again will exist in the United States of America, the only country in history that was founded to be an exception to human history.
    The only Country created, founded and crafted to be the unique place on Earth freedom loving People could KNOW they could go to and find the opportunity to live in freedom and peace among other freedom loving People who value coexistence with others and the freedom to actualize to the fullest of the individual humanity that lives within each of us. 
    That is what makes true diversity.
    Not killing the real greatness and beauty of the human person so the delusional essence of insanity within insane minds might live.

    The American People are not in the phase of decline where they must decide who will lead them and The United States. 
    They are now in the phase where they must choose how to survive those who are already leading this country and their insane monster devotees i.e.
    derp state rogue govs armies of deliberately engineered insane death cult soldiers.

  8. Regardless of what one thinks about the article or the examples, this is grist for the thought mill. Because one side seemingly is engaging in free speech suppression does not mean the other side will not now, in the future, nor in the past.

    While I understand the temptation to use the whip of speech suppression to either push an agenda or vilify the opponent, history shows it always fails in the end. Those that use these tactics end up eaten by their own beast they created. The hard part for me is I cannot tell if these people are cynical or truly believe they are doing right.

    Everyone should be horrified of what is happening now. Regardless of what side of the political line one stands, do you want your side to have their speech suppressed? Believing that speech suppression for ideas you find detestable only gives the other side the same rights to want and suppress your speech because they find your ideas reprehensible. Does one really think the other side is dishonest in their views? Maybe they just disagree.

    How about open airing and let the best ideas win? Now there is a thought.

  9. “The results aren’t pretty and there really is a general impossibility to discuss anything of substance here. But that’s a feature of this blog. Party on.”—-bugface

    I truly hope you have better luck “just being you” at your next stop on the troll train. With all sincerity…good riddance lawn boy.

    1. “Actually your posts humor me because they’re one hundred percent opinion driven”

      Uh huh…ask your friend Gigi about that. Or maybe you’d like a stab at the belt, lawn boy.

      There are ZERO oil fired power plants in Texas—fact
      The DC National guard does NOT answer “only to the prsident”—fact
      Rudy Giuliani NEVER had possession of Hunter’s laptop—fact
      The FBI got the laptop from Isaac, not Giuliani—fact
      Inflation rose between June and July, 2023—fact
      The inflation rate when Trump left office was 1.4%, not 8%—-fact
      The 1972 Supreme Court DID NOT rule that life begins at viability—-fact

      1. Of course, none of her lies “trumps” your best doozey.

        “You can’t submit any evidence at trial unless you have incontravertible proof”

        But you are correct, it’s my OPINION that that’s the dumbest thing I’ve ever read.

  10. Jonathan: Why do you continue to say that you were “raised in a liberal, politically active Democratic family in Chicago”? Do you think it gives a patina of legitimacy for your continued attacks on the Dems? It doesn’t. For some reason you turned your back on your family’s Democratic traditions years ago and now are an unrepentant CONSERVATIVE. Need proof? Here are a few examples:

    1. You work for Rupert Murdock. Fox can’t be accused of being a “liberal” Democratic cable news channel. When you appear on Fox as their “legal analyst” you provide an echo chamber for their attacks on the Dems

    2. You have called for the impeachment of Pres. Biden and have worked with the MAGA Republicans in the House to begin an impeachment inquiry.

    3. You have attacked DA Fani Willis’s Rico indictment of DJT calling it a “sweeping…criminalization of election challenges”. Not to be repetitive but the Fulton County indictment is not about an “election challenge” but an attempt to overturn a legitimate election in Georgia. DJT didn’t go to court. When he called Brad Raffensperger the election had already been certified for Biden. DJT wanted Raffensperger to switch the vote count. And legitimate “election challenges” don’t include putting up fake electors. “Election challenges” don’t include attacking and defaming election workers by falsely claiming they they were stuffing the the ballot boxes with Biden ballots–nor do they include breaking into an election office to try to steal election data. For all their “election challenges” the Dems never engaged in such illegal acts.

    4. You call “dangerous” any attempt to bar DJT from the ballot under the 14th Amendment. But you admit “some Republicans” have supported DJT’s removal. Who are they? None other than the respective conservative former federal jurist Michael Luttig along with two conservative academic constitutional scholars. All three are “originalists”.

    As a “constitutional scholar” yourself we would have expected you to analyze the Pennsylvania law review article and explain why you think it is “dangerous”.Had you done so you would have to deal with constitutional analysis that Section 3 does not require a court decision that DJT engaged in “insurrection or rebellion”. All it requires is a finding by a state official, usually a Secretary of State. You missed that important part.

    For all your claims to come from a Democratic family tradition, you seem to have turned your back on that tradition long ago. For those on this blog who still think you are a “liberal”, they need a reality check!

    1. And therein lies the rub, doesn’t it McInLiar?… Dennis can’t be a modern liberal because he doesn’t follow the talking points and spew the party line, and he calls out democrats for being idiots when they are. What a weak argument. I guess Bill Maher isn’t a liberal anymore, either. Anyone who doesn’t think Fani is the “first intelligent black woman in a courtroom” can’t be a democrat.

      Your cognitive decline is faster than Biden’s dude. Go find some crap to plagiarise, you’ll look better.

    2. “All it requires is a finding by a state official, usually a Secretary of State. You missed that important part.”

      He didn’t miss it, you numbskull, he understands what that unilateral action will mean. And trust me, you will rue the day.

      1. Dennis thinks JT shouldn’t be paid to be a guest on Fox and give his honest opinion.
        He thinks JT should come to the trough, with all the liberal hacks and perform mental gymnastics on CNN and MSNBC.
        He’s not smart enough to do the math on how much more JT could make if he was really a sellout.

    3. ” Do you think it gives a patina of legitimacy for your continued attacks on the Dems? It doesn’t.”

      You are too dumb to notice but the Democrat Party is no longer the party of JFK. Trump is a Democrat who is more of the JFK variety.

      The rest of your post is even dumber so I won’t bother to comment.

    4. As a “constitutional scholar” yourself we would have expected you to analyze the Pennsylvania law review article and explain why you think it is “dangerous”.Had you done so you would have to deal with constitutional analysis that Section 3 does not require a court decision that DJT engaged in “insurrection or rebellion”. All it requires is a finding by a state official, usually a Secretary of State. You missed that important part.

      The law review fails to mentions Section 5, which states that Congress has the power to enforce this article (the 14th Amendment) by appropriate legislation. Not stater officials or Secretaries of State, Congress.

      Congress could allow individual members of the U.S. armed forces to depose unqualified persons from federal office. They have not done so. As such, a Marine who had just enlisted has no authority to depose FJB, even if the Marine in question has a sincere feeling that FJB provided aid or comfort to the Taliban.

        1. Aid as in a few billion dollars in military grade weapons and equipment.
          With their new machine guns, assault rifles, and a host of other weapons, they likely feel pretty dang comfy.

        2. Some would say that, because botching the withdrawal of Afghanistan resulted in the Taliban acquiring American military materiel, that it constitutes aid or comfort to the Taliban, and, as such, FJB is disqualified under Section 3 of the 14th Amendment.

          The most charitable thing I can write about that argument is that it is not completely batshit insane.

      1. All it requires is a finding by a state official, usually a Secretary of State

        You will have to bring me up to speed. I remember nothing about Sec of State or State officials having enumerated constitutional powers

        1. They do not.

          In theory, Congress could give them authority, pursuant to Congress’s own Section 5 power.

          Hell, Congress could authorize individual members of the military to depose military officers and federal officials whom they feel is disqualified under Section 3.

          They have clearly not done so in either case.

    5. Dennis – a few comments.
      1) “When you appear on Fox as their “legal analyst” you provide an echo chamber for their attacks on the Dems.” So, it is unacceptable to even appear in the same studio with a conservative?
      2) “Not to be repetitive but the Fulton County indictment is not about an “election challenge” but an attempt to overturn a legitimate election in Georgia. DJT didn’t go to court. When he called Brad Raffensperger the election had already been certified for Biden.” Funny, the elction in Florida had been certified for George W. Bush while Al Gore Jr. continued his efforts to change the result.
      3) “DJT wanted Raffensperger to switch the vote count.” You know this is not true. He wanted him to find uncounted or unexamined ballots that he thought might exist, just as Al Gore Jr. wanted an examination of uncounted ballots to show that many voters (in Demo districts) had actually wanted to vote for Gore, but somehow denied the pleasure.
      4) “And legitimate “election challenges” don’t include putting up fake electors.” Except when Democrats select contingent electors, as they have.
      5) “Election challenges” don’t include attacking and defaming election workers by falsely claiming they they were stuffing the the ballot boxes with Biden ballots [.]” All forms of criticism can be described as an “attack.” In that sense, you and your fellow Demo commentators are engaged in a endless series of “attacks” on Trump. And, as a lawyer, you should know that a group as vague as “election workers” cannot be defamed. Trump may speak loosely and even carelessly, but very little speech in politics restricts itself to well-established facts. Remember Russiagate.
      6) “Had you done so [review law article about use of the 14th amendment to bar Trump from the ballot] you would have to deal with constitutional analysis that Section 3 does not require a court decision that DJT engaged in insurrection or rebellion”. All it requires is a finding by a state official, usually a Secretary of State.” Dennis, as a lawyer, you have read the 14th Amendment sec. 3 and know that it DOES NOT contain an enforcement mechanism. I quote:
      “Section 3.
      No person shall be a Senator or Representative in Congress, or elector of President and Vice-President, or hold any office, civil or military, under the United States, or under any State, who, having previously taken an oath, as a member of Congress, or as an officer of the United States, or as a member of any State legislature, or as an executive or judicial officer of any State, to support the Constitution of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof. But Congress may by a vote of two-thirds of each House, remove such disability.”
      However, sec. 5 does go on to state: “The Congress shall have the power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article.” So, it is obvious that the drafters of this Amendment intended Congress alone to be able to enforce section 3. Any other result would be absurd since it would allow individual state politicians to control federal elections.
      Despite the relative mildness of your rhetoric, compared to your peers, you share the current passion of Democrats to use twisted interpretations of the law to destroy your opposition. What a commitment to both “democracy” and the “rule of law.”

    6. “Jonathan: Why do you continue to say that . . .”

      Given Leftists’ nasty habit of projection, it is impossible for them to fathom a man of integrity and principle.

    7. “All it requires is a finding by a state official, usually a Secretary of State.”

      I must’ve missed that footnote to the “disqualification clause.”

  11. Is RAGE an appropriate description of the left’s ideology of hate towards President Trump and Conservatives? I think CHOLER would be better: defined as peevish, irascible temperament, Bilious (spiteful/nauseating). Their sectarianism is the causation of division and the abandonment Americas founding principles of equal Station and respect for others’ opinions.

    The Democrat party has sold their collective an elixir of Snake Oil filled with charms of grandeur fostered by celebrity and eminence of leadership. Their triviality of ideas and governance is frightful and an encroachment liberty. The costs of their despotic crotchet (perverse) track will surely end in abandon of our Constitution. These fools have set the sails of state to an unknown destination but most assuredly chaos will ensue.

  12. Being anti-anything shouldn’t necessarily be a bad thing if you are given good, valid reasons to be against it.

    1. You and I both know that is not how that term is being used today. It is being claimed that being generally opposed to something is not enough. Well, I am not part of your little army (not you personally) and I am not your personal activist. Mao and Pol Pot died years ago, and I’m not going to put up with a bunch of new ones to arise who spend their their time creating, accusing, convicting, and sentencing all of their little thought crimes.

  13. LOL.

    “…general impossibility to discuss anything of substance here.”

    Because you refuse to talk about the topic, let’s talk about Narcissistic Personality Disorder and persecution complexes, shall we?

  14. Somewhat related: Elon Musk allows rampant anti-Semitism on Twitter, but has filed a defamation lawsuit against the ADL for pointing out that anti-Semitism. Discovery should be fun.

    1. Attacking the new ADL, like any attacking Soros, is anything but anti-semetic.

      The ADL has morphed into the Jewish BLM and they have nothing to do with attacks on Jews.

      Cite one example of the ADL going after any individual or group that attacked Jewish people based on religion in the last 5 years. Show me where the ADL said one word about any minority attack on Jews. They are in bed with Al Sharpton, a true Jew hater. They side with Tlaib and Omar. The ADL is a marxist organization now.

      1. That you want me to do something does not create an onus on me to do it.

        And when Twitter allows tweets like “F*** [but spelled out in the original] the Jews,” that’s anti-Semitic, whether you can admit it or not.

        1. So what? What happened to the Jews after that? Did they get F’ed?

          No one likes a whiner.

          PS: F*^$ the Irish…let’s see what happens

      2. Gaye and her lawyer husband are the reason for the ugly travesty troglodyte obama-phile atheistic jino known as

    2. You might have a point if the ADL was still in the Anti-Semitism business. They aren’t. That was abandoned with the takeover by Jonathan Greenblatt.

      “When Jonathan Greenblatt, a former Obama operative, took over the ADL, its annual revenues were $56 million and had been roughly in that range throughout the decade. A year later they shot up to $65 million, then $76 million and totaled $91 million in 2020. With revenues having nearly doubled in 5 years, the odds of ousting Greenblatt remain vanishingly small.

      The ADL shares a fundraising firm with Planned Parenthood, the NAACP and the ACLU, but it also has developed a massive nationwide presence in the educational system.

      Its educational ‘No Place for Hate’ arm claims that it’s present in 1,800 schools reaching 1.3 million students in one school year. It offers “anti-bias” workshops and training, online and in person for teachers, and curriculum and ‘non-hate’ certification for schools. According to the Seattle branch of the ADL, “workshops cost a school or district $1200″. Activists have documented contracts with school districts amounting to tens of thousands of dollars each.

      But one of its more successful areas is also where its teachings may violate state law.

      Florida’s ‘Stop Woke Act’, signed into law by Gov. DeSantis, bars subjecting any student to the idea that anyone is morally superior or oppressive on account of their race. The ADL’s ‘No Place for Hate’ handbook however demands that students “explore, recognize and acknowledge your privilege” and defines racism as “the marginalization and/or oppression of people of color, based on a socially constructed racial hierarchy that privileges white people”

      The familiar message here from critical race theory is that only white people can be racist.

      This violates the Stop Woke Act’s warning that schools may not teach that “an individual’s moral character or status as either privileged or oppressed is necessarily determined by his or her race, color, sex, or national origin.””

      And don’t shoot the messenger, nothing was fabricated here.

      1. Thank you, currentsitguy, for setting the record straight on the ADL. It was in the process of turning Foxman, and today, with Greenblatt at the helm, is Marxist, like Hullbobby says. I have friends who were on the boards of the ADL and ACLU. The only one who hasn’t left those groups is a left-wing nutcase who used to be reasonable.

    3. ATS, you have no interest in anti-Semitism. Your interest is ideological and dangerous. The ADL was a great organization, but once taken over by leftists, there was a rapid decline. Leftists pretend their interest in free speech while using it to worm their way into the apple and start eating from the inside.

      It takes time for the worm-filled apple to show what is happening, so during that time, ideologues like ATS have free reign to push their hateful agenda. Remember, when a leftist and today a leftist-Democrat talk about free speech, they are bulldozing their ideology instead. There are few Democrats that remain as classical liberals. Turley is one of them, and that is why these leftists constantly attack him.

  15. Meanwhile, Judge Kaplan granted partial summary judgment to E. Jean Carroll in her second defamation lawsuit against Donald Trump. The defamation was proved in the first trial and the second trial will be limited to determining damages.

      1. The unanimous jury, which included a Trump supporter, believes it. You deny that truth because you dislike it.

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