Category: Politics

“We Don’t Do This”: Adam Schiff and the Underbelly of American Censorship

Below is my column in the Hill on the recent disclosure of efforts by Rep. Adam Schiff (D., Cal.) to pressure Twitter to censor critics, including a columnist. This effort occurred shortly after Schiff’s office objected to one of my columns accusing him of pressuring social media companies to censor those with opposing views. While publicly denying that he supports censorship, Schiff was secretly pressuring Twitter to censor an array of critics.

Here is the column:

Continue reading ““We Don’t Do This”: Adam Schiff and the Underbelly of American Censorship”

Ninth Circuit Rules That an Advisory Board Member Can Be Fired Over Antifa Association

There is an interesting free speech decision out of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit this week. In Lathus v. City of Huntington Beach, a unanimous panel ruled that a member of a municipal advisory board can be fired for her association with Antifa. The opinion is clearly correct on a constitutional level, but there are some troubling elements given the underlying exercise of speech under the First Amendment.

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Ninth Circuit Rules that Middle School Teacher’s MAGA Hat was Protected Speech

There is a major ruling out of the United States States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in favor of a middle school science teacher, Eric Dodge, who was barred from wearing a “Make America Great Again” baseball cap and later berated by the principal, Caroline Garrett, as a “racist” and a “homophobe.” The unanimous court ruled that the hat was protected speech under the First Amendment. Continue reading “Ninth Circuit Rules that Middle School Teacher’s MAGA Hat was Protected Speech”

Sinner or Saint, George Santos Must be Seated

U.S. House of Representatives

Below is my column in the Hill on the calls for Rep.-Elect George Santos to be denied his seat in Congress this week. Members such as Rep. Eric Swalwell, D-Calif., have declared that Santos should be “banned from taking the oath for Congress.” (Santos has reportedly decided not to run for a second term). Such demands have been heard on various cable networks for weeks without addressing the constitutional barriers to denying a duly elected member from taking a seat. In my view, Santos could prevail in a court fight over being seated if he is barred due to lying about his credentials or background. That does not excuse his conduct. However, once again, members and pundits are calling for an action that is entirely untethered to constitutional realities.

Here is the column:

Continue reading “Sinner or Saint, George Santos Must be Seated”

Sen. Cardin: Hate Speech is Not Protected by First Amendment

Sen. Ben Cardin (D., Md) is ending 2022 on an ominous note after declaring that “if you espouse hate… you’re not protected under the First Amendment.” The statement is obviously untrue, but it is only the latest example of the eroding support for free speech in Congress and the country at large. It is particularly chilling for one of the nation’s most powerful politicians (sworn to “support and defend the Constitution“) to show either a lack of knowledge or lack of fealty to the First Amendment. Continue reading “Sen. Cardin: Hate Speech is Not Protected by First Amendment”

The Pragmatist Versus the Purist: Supreme Court Stays Title 42 Order on “Remain in Mexico”

This evening, the Supreme Court issued an order in the Title 42 case that stayed the nationwide vacatur issue by Emmet G. Sullivan. The 5-4 decision by Chief Justice Roberts prompted a dissent from Justice Neil Gorsuch who once again showed his independence in voting with his liberal colleagues. Indeed, the order was a classic example of the pragmatist (Roberts) and the purest (Gorsuch) going head to head. The case will now be heard in oral argument in February 2023 and, in the interim, the “Remain in Mexico” policy will remain in place. The order embodies what Gorsuch previously warned was a “holiday” of legal principles during the Covid crisis. Continue reading “The Pragmatist Versus the Purist: Supreme Court Stays Title 42 Order on “Remain in Mexico””

When the FBI Attacks Critics as “Conspiracy Theorists,” It’s Time to Reform the Bureau

Below is my column in the Hill on the need for a new “Church Committee” to investigate and reform the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) after years of scandals involving alleged political bias. In response to criticism over its role in Twitter’s censorship system, the FBI lashed out against critics as “conspiracy theorists” spreading disinformation. However, it still refuses to supply new information on other companies, beyond Twitter, that it has paid to engage in censorship.

Here is the column: Continue reading “When the FBI Attacks Critics as “Conspiracy Theorists,” It’s Time to Reform the Bureau”

Without a Hope or a Prayer: Why the Arrest of a British Woman Outside of Abortion Clinic is a Wake-Up Call for Free Speech

This week, the arrest of British Catholic woman for ‘praying’ outside an abortion clinic has attracted international attention. However, the jailing of Isabel Vaughan-Spruce, director of anti-abortion group March for Life UK, is neither surprising nor particularly rare as a denial of free speech in Great Britain. While this form of “protest” is uncommon as the basis for an arrest, free speech has been in a free fall in the UK for years. It is also a cautionary tale for those in the United States, which is facing arguably the largest anti-free speech movement in its history. Continue reading “Without a Hope or a Prayer: Why the Arrest of a British Woman Outside of Abortion Clinic is a Wake-Up Call for Free Speech”

“Probing & Pushing Everywhere”: New Twitter Releases Confirm the FBI’s Role in Suppressing the Hunter Laptop Story

Below is my column on Fox.com on the most recent release of Twitter files detailing the FBI’s direct involvement in the targeting and censoring of citizens. The most notable aspect is the effort by the FBI to censor references to the Hunter Biden scandal before the 2020 election. Here is the column:

Continue reading ““Probing & Pushing Everywhere”: New Twitter Releases Confirm the FBI’s Role in Suppressing the Hunter Laptop Story”

A Case of Hope Over Experience: The J6 Referral Falls Short of a Credible Criminal Case

This week the January 6th Committee voted to make criminal referrals to the Justice Department, including the proposed indictment of former President Donald Trump.  However, the Committee’s splashy finale lacked any substantial new evidence to make a compelling criminal case against former President Donald Trump. The Committee repackaged largely the same evidence that it has previously put forward over the past year. That is not enough. Indeed, the reliance on a new videotape of former Trump aide Hope Hicks seems a case of putting “hope over experience” in the criminal Justice system.

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ABC’s Martha Raddatz Under Fire Over Abbott Interview

YouTube/C-Span

There is an interesting controversy this week after ABC’s Martha Raddatz took Texas GOP Governor Greg Abbott to task for public comments about the open Southern border as fueling the crisis. Raddatz is being criticized for her claim that President Joe Biden has never encouraged migrants to come over the border — a statement that many objected to as demonstrably false. However, I am more interested in a different aspect of her remarks: the objection to Abbott’s language. It is the type of objection that one finds from a system of state media where the narrative is supposed to be replicated and uniform. Continue reading “ABC’s Martha Raddatz Under Fire Over Abbott Interview”

Harvard/Harris: Two-Thirds of Voters Believe Social Media Engaged in Politically-Motivated Censorship and Demand Congressional Action

Twitter LogoThe December Harvard CAPS / Harris Poll is out this week and Mark Penn and his colleagues have some interesting results to share. Despite the refusal of many in the media to cover the Twitter files, nearly two-thirds of voters believe Twitter shadow-banned users and engaged in political censorship during the 2020 election. Seventy percent of voters want new national laws protecting users from corporate censorship.

Continue reading “Harvard/Harris: Two-Thirds of Voters Believe Social Media Engaged in Politically-Motivated Censorship and Demand Congressional Action”

EU Threatens Musk With Sanctions Over Suspending Media…After Ignoring Media Bans Under Old Twitter

Twitter Logo

Despite my support for Elon Musk’s continuing efforts to reduce censorship and restore free speech protections on Twitter, I have been critical of some of his moves from his use of polls on restoring certain posters to the suspensions of media figures this week. However, this morning, I was struck by the European Union (EU) rushing into the controversy to threaten, again, sanctions against Musk. The EU is apparently aghast that Twitter could suspend media even temporarily after ignoring the bans on conservative media for years under the old management. Continue reading “EU Threatens Musk With Sanctions Over Suspending Media…After Ignoring Media Bans Under Old Twitter”

“Effective Altruism”: Could SBF’s Parents Be the Key to a Plea?

Below is my column in the New York Post on the potential liability of the parents of Sam Bankman-Fried. It is not uncommon for federal prosecutors to go after family members to induce a plea by a defendant. In this case, the reported involvement of the parents in some of operations or payments magnifies that risk.

Here is the column:

 

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The Legion of Democratic Doom? Biden Operatives Plan “Swat Force” on Hunter Biden Scandal

 

YouTube Screengrab

Below is my column in the New York Post on the very public plan to target potential witnesses — and even media — in the Biden influence peddling scandal. It is rare to see such a scorched Earth campaign intentionally made public. When Hillary Clinton’s campaign funded the Steele dossier, it hid its role and even denied the funding when asked by reporters. This was clearly an effort to not only reveal the plan but to specifically declare the potential targets, including key witnesses, against the Bidens.

Here is the column: Continue reading “The Legion of Democratic Doom? Biden Operatives Plan “Swat Force” on Hunter Biden Scandal”

Res ipsa loquitur – The thing itself speaks