The South Carolina legislature is moving to enact a new law with deeply troubling free speech implications. Following the Jackson Women’s Health Organization v. Dobbs decision overturning Roe, the legislators have sought to criminalize any effort to ”aid, abet or conspire with someone” to obtain an abortion. That apparently includes sharing information over the Internet or other communication systems. In my view, the law violates the First Amendment and should be scuttled by the legislature. Otherwise, it would likely be struck down by the courts.
As various states move to pass controversial new gun control laws after the decision in New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen, one such law was just enjoined by a federal court in Colorado. In Rocky Mountain Gun Owners v. Superior, District Judge Raymond P. Moore granted a motion for a preliminary injunction to stop enforcement of the law enacted by the town of Superior, Colorado to ban on the sale or possession of a wide array of guns. Continue reading “Federal Court Enjoins “Assault Gun” Ban in Boulder County, Colorado”
Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan made a curious and concerning comment this week about how the Supreme Court’s legitimacy depends on the consistency of its judicial opinions with public opinion. It was a comment that seemed consistent with the criticism of Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D., Mass.) that the Court was improperly departing from “widely held public opinion.” Warren used the complaint to justify her call for raw court packing to produce an instant liberal majority. I am frankly astonished by the statement of Justice Kagan which runs against the entire purpose of the Court as, at times, a countermajoritarian institution designed to follow the constitution rather than the polls.
Critics of the Supreme Court have tried every means to change the balance or decisions of the Court from threats of impeachment to harassing justices at homes or restaurants. Some of these reckless measures have been encouraged by law professors, including a Georgetown law professor who encouraged more “aggressive” measures targeting the justices. Now, Seton Hall Law Assistant Dean Brian Sheppard has called for Congress to “buyout” justices by offering them “large sums of money.” If needed, he suggests that President Joe Biden could scrape up the dough to prompt justices to cash in and get out.
Below is my column in the Hill on today’s final scheduled hearing of the J6 Committee. While the Committee can continue to schedule new hearings, the eighth hearing highlights the fact a compelling criminal case against President Donald Trump has still not been made. Despite the prior promises of the members, the hearings have largely amplified what was previously known rather than introduce new “smoking gun” evidence. Even in the absence of a single dissenting member, the Committee has not been able to make the long-promised criminal case.
Here is the column:
The media is reporting that the criminal investigation of Hunter Biden is at a “critical stage” with the grand jury considering an array of charges including various tax violations and possible foreign lobbying violations. I previously testified in Congress on possible criminal exposure for Hunter under the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA). There seems ample evidence for such charges but there remain some glaring questions in how the Biden Administration has handled the investigation of the Biden family. What is also striking is the initial response of pundits on cable channels like MSNBC that has long ignored or downplayed the allegations. Continue reading ““Republicans are Just Going After Him”: The Media Starts the Spin on Possible Hunter Biden Charges”
Here is the column:
There is a major verdict in a free speech case out of Texas where Charlene Carter, a former Southwest flight attendant won a verdict of more than $5 million for her wrongful termination after a posting on social media criticizing her union on its abortion stand. Both Southwest and the Transportation Workers Union of America (TWU) (Local 556) are named as defendants. Ironically, the TWU insists that it is “offering working people a voice.” However, it is accused of working with the company to terminate this worker who spoke up against the union.
By Darren Smith, Weekend Contributor
I’ll go out on a limb and make a proposal, based mostly on anecdotal observations I have made during my adult life of both politicians and elected officials–there is a difference–and what these individuals have often gotten us into. I have come to the conclusion that among the various cultivars of politics, the two positions that for me have consistently remained the most benevolently virtuous, and least damaging to ordinary people, are not the high-profile, ostentatious seats in various houses of parliament, legislatures, or a presidency. They are often the more behind-the-scenes, yet foundationally necessary public service elected officials often known as Water District and Sewer District Commissioners.
They might not be the most well-known, which in itself is an admirable quality, but they serve for me as a model of how we would be as a society better off if politicians adopted the approach of these commissioners and not that of petty tyrants or worse that seem to be attracted to politics.
Below is my column in USA Today on misleading claims made about the recent abortion ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization and the existing protections for women on issues ranging from travel to contraceptives. There are good-faith concerns over the reasoning and implications of the decision. There is no need to raise unfounded fears over issues like interstate travel or contraceptives. The President and the Court appear in agreement. The time is now for citizens to vote on the issue of abortion and any limitations placed on that state-based right.
Here is the column:
Heritage Foundation President Kevin Roberts has filed an ethics complaint with the Office of Congressional Ethics against Rep. Katie Porter (D., Cal.) after her allegation that a witness lied under oath in opposing gun laws three years ago in a hearing. In a hearing this month, she made the allegation against Heritage Foundation legal fellow and Second Amendment expert Amy Swearer. The exchange between Swearer and Porter went viral on the Internet with many liberals praising Porter for the exchange. A closer examination shows that the attack was unfair and unfounded. It is also an increasingly common part of congressional hearings as members seek to intimidate or abuse expert witnesses who hold opposing views. While these ethical complaints are difficult to maintain under the generous rules of the House, Porter’s conduct warrants condemnation. Continue reading “Rep. Katie Porter Hit With Ethics Complaint Over Attack on Witness”
We recently discussed the Georgetown law professor who defended “more aggressive” protests targeting the Supreme Court justices, but Harvard clinical instructor Alejandra Caraballo wants to guarantee that “The 6 justices who overturned Roe should never know peace again.” Accordingly, Caraballo is calling for people to “accost them every time they are in public.” That harassment, according to Caraballo, is the “civic duty” of every American.
Below is my column in The Hill on the punishment of four mounted Border Patrol agents in Texas and what is says about us as a country. What is particularly crushing is not just that this can occur but that it was predicted almost a year ago.
After a setback before the Delaware Supreme Court, the University of Delaware is continuing its dogged effort to prevent the public from seeing the senatorial papers of President Joe Biden. The continued litigation, at public cost, has been criticized as an effort to shield President Biden from potentially embarrassing material from being accessed by the media or public interest groups. For a research institution, it is a curious role to prevent access to documents but clearly a role supported by President Biden and his family. What is particularly troubling is the reason being claimed by the university. Continue reading “University of Delaware Continues Fight to Shield Biden Documents From Public Review”