Napoleon once said “treason is a matter of dates.” The Democrats seem to have taken Napoleon’s words to heart in declaring Republicans traitors or anti-Democratic in their planned challenge the certification of electoral votes next week. Both the media and Democratic members have advanced this narrative despite Democratic members repeatedly raising such challenges in the past. In the few acknowledgments of that history, Democrats seem to be advancing a simple and familiar defense: Trump. Once again, open hypocrisy is negated by Trumpunity. After all, they cannot be anti-Democratic because they are Democrats. That conclusory position was evident in the spin this week on CNN by former California Sen. Barbara Boxer who led such a challenge to the 2004 election results. Continue reading ““Treason Is A Matter Of Dates”: Democrats Denounce Republicans For The Same Challenge They Previously Made To Republican Presidents”
We have previously discussed attorneys arrested in attacks with Molotov cocktails during protests. One of the individuals charged in the firebombing of police cars during Black Lives Matter protests in Arkansas turns out to be a former public radio reporter, Renea Goddard, 22. She is one of four charged in the slashing of police car tires and burning them with Molotov cocktails.
President Donald Trump has been criticized by Democrats and Republicans alike for his recent spate of pardons, including corrupt ex-congressmen and the father of Jared Kushner. I was one of those who immediately criticized those pardons as manifestly unjustified and inimical to our legal system. However, none of that makes the comments of senior U.S. District Judge Robert Pratt of the Southern District of Iowa any less troubling. Judge Pratt gave an interview slamming the pardons in a departure from judicial ethics rules barring jurists from engaging in such political commentary.
The New York Times is under fire for its coverage of how an incoming Tennessee cheerleader was dumped from the team after the release of a three-second video in which she used a racial epithet. Times reporter Dan Levin gave a strikingly positive account of how Jimmy Galligan waited for years to release the video to do the most harm to Mimi Groves. The article “A Racial Slur, a Viral Video, and a Reckoning,” is being cited as the ultimate celebration of the cancel culture in its tenor and lack of balance. Everyone agrees that the use of the n-word was a terrible thing. However, the same standard does not seem to apply to professors who use racist and insensitive comments. It would seem that, even if students are not accorded the same protections for faculty, universities should offer them the same opportunity for redemptive change. After all, college is meant as place for personal growth for students.
Michael Cohen is now a prisoner rights advocate. As someone who has run a prisoner project for decades, it came as something of a surprise to me but Cohen is now a reformer . . . just ask Tony Meatballs. The reference came up in an interview with MSNBC’s Ari Melber in which Cohen explained that he only filed for early release under the First Step Act (Trump’s much touted criminal justice reform bill) because he promised “my buddies Tony Meatballs and Big Minty, that I wasn’t going to stop once I got out” in seeking to reform our prisons. You see, it is really not for Mike Cohen. It is for Tony Meatballs.
Below is my column in the Hill on claims by former Deputy Special Counsel Andrew Weissmann that the recent pardons by President Donald Trump reinforce a possible obstruction of justice case against him. We have previously discussed how Weissmann has proven critics correct in their description of his animosity and bias toward Trump. For my part, his book and recent statements reinforce the view of an abusive prosecutor, particularly in his untethered view of obstruction. Indeed, Weissmann seems intent on making the best case for Trump to grant himself a self-pardon. He is calling for prosecutors to use grand juries to pursue Trump and others in an unrelenting campaign based on unfounded legal theories.
Here is the column:
Zhang Zhan, 37, is a citizen journalist who reported on the early evidence of a pandemic in Wuhan. In its latest abuse of basic human rights, the Chinese regime has sentenced Zhang to four years in prison for her courageous reporting. She was reportedly convicted under the absurd criminal allegation that she was “picking quarrels and provoking trouble.”
Below is my column in the Hill on grounds for and against the appointment of a Special Counsel in the Hunter Biden investigation. By refusing address the underlying allegations, Joe Biden is magnifying the concerns over possible conflicts of interest and his own possible exposure. Biden is maintaining that he will not ask potential Justice Department nominees about the investigation but he is also refusing to answer specific questions. In the meantime, he appeared to confirm that he views the investigation to be Russian disinformation. That is a familiar profile in a scandal at the start of an Administration and Democrats are likely to face their own prior calls to investigate the Trump family on such questions of foreign influence.
President-elect Joe Biden has a pony problem. During the primary, Joe Biden bizarrely responded to a woman who asked why voters should believe that he could win a national election by saying “You’re a lying dog-faced pony soldier.” That encounter came to mind when Biden this week mocked Fox reporter Peter Doocy, who violated the virtual news blackout on the Hunter Biden story. by asking about the scandal. Biden immediately walked off stage and then stopped and said “Yes, yes, yes. God love you, man — you’re a one-horse pony, I tell you.” Continue reading “Biden’s Pony Problem: Why The Hunter Biden Scandal Is No Dead Horse”
In 2019, former Rep. Katie Hill resigned from Congress after the disclosure of sexual relations with a staff member. Ordinarily, the media and various public interest groups would have been outraged and unrelenting in their “MeToo” coverage, particularly with a young staffer recently out of college. In the case of Hill, however ,media outlets like MSNBC picked up on Hill’s claim that she was subjected to a “double standard” and a “misogynistic culture.” It was the ultimate form of ironic hypocrisy where a politician claimed a double standard in being forced to resign — seeking an accommodation that was wisely denied to male colleagues in past scandals. Various male politicians from Sen. Bob Packwood to Rep. Trent Franks have resigned under such scandals. Sen. Al Franken resigned for acts that did not involve an actual sexual affair. Hill abused her position of power but somehow converted that abuse into a women’s rights issue. Hill sold that narrative and is now bizarrely treated by many as a victim. Now, Hill is suing over the coverage of her scandal in a lawsuit that challenges core protections for the media. Continue reading “Former Rep. Hill Files Lawsuit Against Former Husband And Media Over Public Disclosures”
We have repeatedly discussed how legal experts over the last four years have adopted ever expansive interpretations of statutory and constitutional provisions to argue that President Donald Trump could be indicted or impeached on a myriad of different grounds. This includes the reliance on interpretations long rejected by the Supreme Court. Some issues are manifestly closer like the long-standing question of presidential self-pardons. While I have long maintained (before the Trump Administration) that a president can self-pardon, I have always said that this is a question with good-faith arguments on both sides. Recently, however, experts have brought the same claims of clarity on this question to assure the public that the argument for self-pardons is “incoherent and incompatible” with the Constitution. Ken Gormley, president of Duquesne University, is one of those who supported impeachment and rejected any basis for self-pardons. He has now however gone one better and claimed that Joe Biden can “unpardon” Trump if he does grant himself a self-pardon.
Yesterday, the media erupted with the latest bombshell stories of how President Donald Trump is discussing plans for martial law and the appointment of former Trump campaign lawyer Sidney Powell as a Special Counsel. It was a familiar bomb and bust pattern. A fair basis for coverage on the meeting quickly mutated into what bordered on panic coverage on the threat of a military takeover. This morning Jake Tapper headlined his show with “Conspiracy in the Oval Office” on how Trump discussed imposing martial law. He asked “How scared should we be?” The answer is not very on either count. President Trump publicly denied the report as “fake news.”
We had breaking news Thursday night: Joe Biden is proud of his son Hunter. After a blackout on the Hunter Biden scandal before the election, it often seems as if the media is struggling to offer the appearance of coverage without actually asking questions that could be damaging for the president-elect.
That view of many was reinforced in the first interview with Biden about his son since the November election. It was conducted by CBS’ Stephen Colbert, host of “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.” Biden has refused to answer questions on the expanding scandal surrounding his son’s China connections so this was a big deal. However, the president-elect’s team arranged for the all-important question to be asked by a comedian on a late-night show. Continue reading “Comedic Relief: Biden Declares Hunter Investigation Just More “Foul Play” By Political Operatives”
I will admit to being highly critical of Rudy Giuliani’s representation of President Donald Trump for many years (here and here and here and here and here and here and here). He has consistently made statements in interviews that seem diametrically at odds with the interests of his client and his comments have repeatedly forced later corrections or clarifications by the White House or himself. This history led to his prior firm severing ties with him. However, despite that history, nothing prepared me for the video posted by the Recount showing Giuliani breaking off from detailing allegations against Hunter Biden to shill for cigars and gold coins. To be honest, the video comes across as Lionel Hutz of the Simpsons meets Offer Shlomi of ShamWow. Some have raised renewed questions of whether he is helping or hurting his legal team. I do not view this commercial as a bar violation though it raises an increasing issue over the ethical rules governing dual roles of counsel.