Archive for the ‘Judiciary’ Category

Judge Michael McHaney criticized Illinois Democrat Gov. J.B. Pritzker in his ruling. In fact, Judge McHaney’s ruling was more of a blistering than a ruling. In his blistering/ruling, Judge McHaney opened by saying “Since the inception of this insanity, the following regulations, rules or consequences have occurred: I won’t get COVID if I get an abortion but I will get COVID if I get a colonoscopy.”

Judge McHaney’s ruling stings Gov. Pritzker after that by saying “Selling pot is essential but selling goods and services at a family- owned business is not. Pot wasn’t even legal and pot dispensaries didn’t even exist in this state until five months ago and, in that five months, they have become essential but a family-owned business in existence for five generations is not. A family of six can pile in their car and drive to Carlyle Lake without contracting COVID but, if they all get in the same boat, they will.”

Later in the ruling, Judge McHaney unleashes his harshest criticism:

The defendant in this case orders you to stay home and pronounces that, if you leave the state, you are putting people in danger, but his family members traveled to Florida and Wisconsin because he deems such travel essential. One initial rationale why the rules don’t apply to him is that his family farm had animals that needed fed. Try selling that argument to farmers who have had to slaughter their herds because of disruption in the supply chain.

Then there’s this:

Make no mistake, these executive orders are not laws. They are royal decrees. Illinois citizens are not being governed, they are being ruled. The last time I checked Illinois citizens are also Americans and Americans don’t get ruled.

Pritzker employed the Democrats’ time-tested tactic of do-as-I-say-not-as-I-do. His family lived in Florida virtually all winter while Ron DeSantis managed things properly. Pritzker got them out of Illinois while he mismanaged the COVID crisis.

Read Judge McHaney’s short ruling. It’s well worth the time spent.

Another day, another judge has ruled against another Democrat governor. This time, “Circuit Judge Matthew B. Shirtcliff granted a preliminary injunction to 10 churches that had sued the governor.” Unfortunately, Gov. Kate Brown’s office “appealed to the state Supreme Court to keep her emergency orders in effect.”

Gov. Brown, another iron-fisted Democrat, issued a statement after appealing. The statement said “This will ensure we can continue to safeguard the health of all Oregonians, including frontline health care workers, those living in nursing homes, workers in agriculture and food processing plants, and Oregonians with underlying health conditions, while the legal process moves forward.”

In his opinion, Judge Shirtcliff struck a different position. Here’s what Judge Shirtcliff said:

The governor’s orders are not required for public safety when plaintiffs can continue to utilize social distancing and safety protocols at larger gatherings involving spiritual worship. Plaintiffs have shown that they will be harmed by deprivation of the constitutional right to freely exercise their religion. Other plaintiffs have also shown great economic harm to their businesses and their ability to seek livelihood.

First, Brown will lose the fight with churches. If churches utilize social distancing, then Gov. Brown, or any other iron-fisted Democrat governor for that matter, can’t prohibit the free practice of religion. Overcoming the Bill of Rights is the legal equivalent of fighting uphill with a weight tied to your waist.

The legal position on other restrictions is that they have to be the least intrusive restrictions that accomplish the government’s legitimate goal. If these store owners show that they’re following the same rules that big box stores are using, then this fight is finished.

This isn’t the only instance of a Democrat governor overreaching. J.B. Pritzker, Illinois’s iron-fisted Democrat governor, is attempting an end-run around the legislature. Pritzker “filed an emergency rule that would penalize owners of restaurants, bars, gyms, barbershops and other businesses for reopening before coronavirus restrictions are lifted.” That’s unconstitutional because governors don’t write laws. They enforce them. State Sen. Dan McConchie replied through Twitter:

This says it all:

This is a clear breach of the separation of powers. It is the role of the legislature to make the law, and the role of the Governor to enforce it. He has assumed both roles and shut out the legislative branch. It is beyond time for the Governor to stop ruling by fiat.

Sen. McConchie better file a lawsuit on this because a judge’s ruling will take this out of Pritzker’s hands.

UPDATE: The Oregon Supreme Court intervened in the case, essentially throwing out the Shirtcliff ruling. This is, in my opinion, proof of why they should’ve filed this in federal court. State courts can get packed with partisan political operatives, which appears to have happened here.

Tony Evers, Wisconsin’s Democrat governor, is upset with the Wisconsin Supreme Court’s ruling on Evers’ Wuhan Virus executive order. After the Supreme Court ruled against Gov. Evers’ EO, Gov. Evers said “Republican legislators convinced four members of the Supreme Court to throw the state into chaos. Republicans own that chaos.”

That’s an incomprehensible statement considering what’s been happening in Wisconsin. According to the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel’s reporting “The ruling immediately lifts all restrictions on businesses and gatherings imposed by the administration’s order but keeps in place the closure of schools until fall. It comes after Evers had already begun lifting some restrictions because the spread of the virus has slowed for now.

This is what makes Gov. Evers’ statement that much stranger:

To put any new limits in place, the Democratic governor and Republican-controlled Legislature will be forced to work together to deal with the ebbs and flows of the outbreak — something the two sides have rarely been able to achieve before.

The horror of it all. Evers thinks that it’s the apocalypse if he has to work with — gasp!?! — Republicans? I can feel ice forming in Hades as I type.

I thought that J.B. Pritzker, Illinois’s Democrat governor, was a drama queen. I’m not certain that Evers shouldn’t fit into that same category.

In less than a minute, Gov. Evers said that ‘Wisconsin people aren’t idiots. They’ll do the right thing.’ then says that those same people have been thrown into chaos. It doesn’t work that way, Gov. Evers. Either they’re smart and they make good decisions or they’re idiots and they’re prone to creating chaos. It isn’t both.

Gov. Evers, the court has ruled. You can whine like you did in this interview or you can work with Republicans. Wisconsin elected you to govern, not to go on MSNBC and play a Democrat drama queen. It’s time you grew up. If your ideas are worthwhile, Republicans will work with you. If they aren’t, then they don’t deserve support. It’s just that simple.

It’s just one judge’s ruling but Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s executive order just sustained a major hit. This comes “after the Shiawassee County Sheriff said he wouldn’t enforce the order.” The article read “Karl Manke is ready for customers after a judge denied a temporary restraining order to close the barbershop.”

David Kallman, Manke’s attorney, said “We’re thrilled, yea. The court just denied the TRO request that the attorney general filed earlier today, which means Karl can stay open. And the judge did what we asked, which is if they want to have a hearing, present evidence and try to convince the court that Karl should be shut down, show how the proof. Show that people are actually being harmed.”

Later, Manke said this:

I had gone six weeks without a paycheck, with no money coming in. You know, I’ve been in this business 59 years. I’m entering my 60th now. I’m 77. I’ve always worked. I’ve never looked for handouts, I don’t even know what they are. I had somebody call me and say why don’t you get on food stamps. I don’t want food stamps. I want to work.

Manke said that he’s surprised by the amount of support he’s received:

“I came into this last Monday alone, thinking I’m going to swing in the wind alone,” he said, calling the governor’s order to keep non-essential businesses closed oppressive and he doesn’t need to be mothered by lawmakers. “I cannot believe the support that I’ve got. It’s overwhelming.”

Check this video out:

Just short of 2 minutes into the video, Manke said “I’ve never seen anything like this at all. I’ve never seen this type of oppression by a government, not even in the 60s.” It was difficult to hear Manke’s speech at times because of all the horns honking as they drove past Manke’s shop. That’s what a backlash forming sounds like. They’re mad as hell and they won’t take Gov. Whitmer’s oppression much longer. We The People should take up this battle cry:

“The government isn’t my mother, never has been. It’s time for us to take responsibility.”

David Kallman highlighted the fact that the Michigan legislature refused to extend “the declaration of emergency”, that declaration has lapsed. Since then, Empress Whitmer declared another state of emergency as a way of getting around the legislature’s decision. That new declaration is a legal dead man walking since it wasn’t authorized by the legislature. As Kallman said, that first declaration ended “according to state law.”

Kallman then stated that “If you can walk down the aisle at Walmart, you can walk down the aisle at your church and you can walk down the aisle to Karl’s barber shop.” Kallman then stated that Manke is following the same protocols (hand-washing, social distancing) that other businesses are practicing. What is Gov. Whitmer’s argument in light of those facts? That Walmart is better at hand-washing and social distancing? Her EOs are ridiculous and oppressive. The people know it, too.

It’s time for this selective oppression to end. The rule of law, due process and the right to pursue happiness (without endangering others) must mean something. They can’t just be words on a piece of paper.

To: Sean Hannity, Harris Faulkner
From: Gary Gross, Uppity Peasants Brigade
Subject: Michigan’s protests

Regarding your points made about the protests held inside the Michigan State Capitol Building in Lansing, MI, I find your points well-taken and well-reasoned. Still, there’s something that both of you missed, which is that your expectations were too high. Let me explain.

Sean, I can’t dispute the fact that men showing up with rifles inside the Capitol drowns out whatever message the vast majority of the protesters were trying to send. That being said, quickly and firmly criticizing these men would’ve been appropriate had you then pivoted to criticizing Gov. Whitmer’s overreach. What she’s done with her executive orders has created the protesters’ frustration.

Harris, last week on Outnumbered, the panel got into a discussion about the protesters not properly distancing themselves. That’s an accurate statement. Again, what wasn’t said was important. Expecting perfect, well-reasoned behavior after being ordered to shelter-in-place is unreasonable. These protesters were protesting because their frustration boiled over.

It’s human nature to lash out after people had their rights diminished. I suspect that last week’s protesters are next week’s model citizens. It isn’t too much to ask commentators to take into account the frustration (and fear) these people are experiencing. When you combine these factors and frustrations, then couple that with human nature, the outcome is predictable.

As people of faith (I’m a believer, too), let’s work overtime this week to show a little extra grace to people who’ve been improperly suppressed by Gov. Whitmer. Let’s give the protesters the benefit of the doubt. They’ve been through hell, thanks to Gov. Whitmer’s overreach.

Speaking of which, this exchange put a smile on my face:

Judge Moyé should apologize to Shelley Luther. His tone was unwarrantedly disdainful. Ms. Luther was right to speak truth to judicial overreach. After all, Judge Moyé had the option of dismissing the case. Instead Judge Moyé opted to lecture Ms. Luther.

In case Republicans haven’t figured it out, protesting at state capitol buildings is fun but it isn’t effective. I’m not suggesting that we shouldn’t protest Gov. Walz’s questionable decisions. What I’m saying is that GOP activists shouldn’t limit themselves to just protesting. Saturday afternoon, the DFL issued this statement criticizing Kurt Daudt:

Today, Minnesota House Republicans have made it clear that they would rather play politics than help Minnesotans get back to work. By pledging to block Governor Walz’s Local Jobs and Projects Plan, Representative Daudt and House Republicans are standing in the way of thousands of hardworking men and women in the construction industry building our critical infrastructure throughout the state. Once again, Minnesota Republicans say one thing and do another – they say they want to pass an infrastructure bill but when the time comes to actually get it done, they stick it to working people who desperately need these jobs.

Representative Daudt’s foolish temper tantrum goes against the advice of public health experts, the wishes of the vast majority of the American people, and the guidelines for reopening states issued by the President of Daudt’s own party. Representative Daudt’s gambling with the health and economic well-being of Minnesotans everywhere proves just how unfit Minnesota Republicans are to lead, especially during times of crisis.

It’s time for the gloves to come off. It’s time to expose the DFL as the party who shut down Minnesota’s economy based on a model put together by our DFL governor and Jan Malcolm, his clueless commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Health and the U of M. That model was off by orders of magnitude. Gov. Walz tried frightening Minnesotans by telling us that 74,000 Minnesotans would die if we did nothing. That’s an outright lie. As of Saturday night, May 2, there were 6,228 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Minnesota and 395 deaths related to COVID-19 in Minnesota.

It’s time for Kurt Daudt and Paul Gazelka to step off the sidelines. They’re playing defense. They should play offense by filing a lawsuit that ends Emperor Walz’s reign of autocracy. Question the constitutional validity of Walz’s shelter-in-place orders. There’s nothing worthwhile about any of them. How many people lost their life savings thanks to Gov. Walz’s autocratic decisions? How many people lost their jobs thanks to Gov. Walz’s autocratic decisions?

It’s time to fight against Gov. Walz and the DFL’s autocratic rules. There’s nothing reasonable about how the DFL is infringing upon our rights to earn a living. Gov. Walz’s decisions has triggered a Minnesota deficit that’s likely to exceed $5,000,000,000 next year. That’s hiding the costs of draining the Rainy Day Fund and a multi-billion-dollar federal bailout.

Gov. Walz, if we save one life but destroy families upon families’ life savings, will it still be worth it? If you say yes to that question, then you’re a bleeping idiot.

Finally, We The People have the right to representation on the biggest issues of the day. When it comes to COVID-19 matters, we don’t have a say in any matters. That’s because Gov. Walz insists on making all of the decisions himself. That isn’t a constitutional republic. That’s a monarchy. 244 years ago, patriots stood up and fought against tyrants that insisted on controlling our lives. It’s time we started our own revolutionary war. This time, though, let’s use the courts instead of using muskets.

Fred Barnes’ article highlights the GOP’s strategy for making the federal judiciary more conservative. According to Barnes’ article, “Eligible appeals court judges (appointees of Republican presidents, to be specific) are being asked to switch to senior status, a form of semi-retirement that allows them to continue hearing cases but opens their seat for a new nominee. This could create as many as 28 vacancies on the appeals courts.”

Utilizing this strategy is smart. There’s no sense in not exercising this option. That being said, the activists need to activate and grow Mitch McConnell’s majority and get President Trump re-elected so we can transform the federal bench. At some point, a Democrat will get elected president. Eventually, there will be a Democrat majority in the Senate. Pushing that date out further into the future means, potentially, another Supreme Court justice or 2 and 15+ conservative appellate court judges. Those are game-changers.

Democrats are frightened at the possibility of having their policy-making tool of preference, the courts, changed for a generation. Barnes notes that Democrats only have themselves to blame for this situation:

But Democrats have only their former Senate majority leader, Harry Reid, to blame. He abolished the filibuster for appeals court nominees in 2013. Even with a thin Republican majority, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has kept his caucus united in approving judges. Were the filibuster alive, conservatives would have to lie about their views to be confirmed.

Mitch McConnell deserves lots of credit for getting tons of judges confirmed but so does Harry Reid. At the time, most pundits thought that Reid wouldn’t be foolish enough to eliminate the judicial filibuster. They were wrong. Now, Democrats will pay the price for a generation. Most of the judges getting confirmed are in their 40s, with a small percentage being in their 50s.

McConnell has touted the confirmation of judges by saying that the Senate is in the personnel business. He’s right about that in that the Senate is where judges and cabinet secretaries get confirmed. He’s virtually guaranteed his re-election by confirming a record amount of judges.

Mollie Hemingway’s article highlights the threat posed by Chuck Schumer’s statement poses to the justices. First, it’s worth noting something that former US Attorney Guy Lewis told Harris Faulkner shortly after Schumer’s threats. Lewis said that US marshals were likely called into action minutes after Schumer’s threats. When Ms. Faulkner asked if this was speculation or whether it was fact, Lewis replied that that’s the procedure that’s been used in the past. He said that a dozen US marshals would be detailed to the justices, their wives and their kids for the next 6 months to protect them from violence.

Sol Wisenberg, a former assistant independent counsel on the Whitewater investigation, insists that Schumer’s statements are protected by the First Amendment. I disagree. What Schumer did was the equivalent of yelling fire in a crowded theater. This is what Schumer said, along with a discussion on Schumer’s threat:

With the things that Antifa and other thugs have done, with the exhortations made by Maxine Waters, with the Bernie Bro who shot Steve Scalise, why wouldn’t Sen. Schumer’s statement be treated as a threat?

These statements can’t be taken as idle chatter. That might’ve been fine 20 years ago but that isn’t the world we’re living in today. Sen. Schumer’s statement was a threat and he knows it. Since Ted Kennedy’s hate-filled diatribe against Judge Robert Bork, Democrats have thoroughly politicized the judicial confirmation process.

The justices that were nominated by Republican presidents got confirmed since then but they’ve been scrutinized unlike any justices in history. Democrats have made these confirmation hearings like Armageddon. Democrats understand that their ideas aren’t popular enough to win passage through the legislative process. That’s why they need an outcomes-based judiciary to implement their social agenda.

Justices that interpret laws through a constitutional lens won’t give Democrats the legislative victories that they’re looking for. More than any other reason, that’s why Sen. Schumer got the activists riled up with his threats.

Multiple times in the past year, Democrats have threatened to change the composition of the Supreme Court because Republicans confirmed Constitution-loving justices. It isn’t a secret that Democrats prefer outcome-based justices. During John Roberts’ confirmation hearing, Sen. Durbin asked a question about what assurances the American people would have that Roberts would rule in the little guy’s favor. Roberts replied, saying that he’d guarantee that he’d rule in the little guy’s favor every time the Constitution was on the little guy’s side.

The Constitution isn’t meant to give “the little guy” an advantage. That’s what legislatures are for. In this post, I wrote about a brief that the Democrat senators Whitehouse, Rosenthal, Hirono and Durbin sent to the Supreme Court. In that brief, they wrote “The Supreme Court is not well. And the people know it. Perhaps the Court can heal itself before the public demands it be ‘restructured in order to reduce the influence of politics.’ Particularly on the urgent issue of gun control, a nation desperately needs it to heal.”

This was clearly a threat from the Democrats to pack the Supreme Court with additional justices if Democrats didn’t get the outcome they wanted on a gun control lawsuit. Democrats haven’t been bashful about their desire to pack the courts. This article highlights the Democrats’ politicization of the Supreme Court:

Democratic candidates are increasingly advocating “court packing,” that is, upping the number of Supreme Court justices to balance the bench — or ensure a liberal majority. The idea is unlikely to succeed for historical and practical reasons but its resonance on the campaign trail reflects Democrats’ new emphasis on the judiciary during the Trump era.

While the Supreme Court is established by the Constitution, the number of members of the Supreme Court is dictated by the Legislative Branch. In other words, a simple majority of Democrats in the House, a simple majority of Democrats in the Senate and a signature of a Democrat president could pack the Supreme Court for a generation or more.

It’s time to take that matter out of the hands of partisans. It’s time to pass a constitutional amendment that forever establishes a 9-member Supreme Court. That’s what we have now. The Court works just fine. Let’s see how many Democrats vote against such an amendment. I triple-dog dare Democrats to admit that they favor the full politicization of the Supreme Court. This is a campaign ad from Elizabeth Warren’s senate campaign:

There’s no way she wouldn’t pack the courts to tip the Supreme Court in the Democrats’ favor.

When Sen. Chuck Schumer attempted to intimidate Supreme Court Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh, it wasn’t the first time Senate Democrats criticized members of the Supreme Court. Senate Democrats attempted to intimidate the Supreme Court when they submitted this brief, which closed by saying “The Supreme Court is not well. And the people know it. Perhaps the Court can heal itself before the public demands it be ‘restructured in order to reduce the influence of politics.’ Particularly on the urgent issue of gun control, a nation desperately needs it to heal.”

That’s a thinly veiled threat by Senate Democrats to pack the courts because they don’t like the Supreme Court’s rulings. What’s clearly meant here is that the Supreme Court could avoid the Democrats’ court-packing if the justices delivered the right ruling in that lawsuit. This highlights the fact that Democrats view the Supreme Court as a legislature.

The Supreme Court is supposed to rule on cases by determining whether a statute lives within the Constitution’s limitations on government. The Constitution was designed to limit the reach of the federal government. The federal government was built by the states to take care of a limited, enumerated, list of things.

The Constitution’s Bill of Rights sought to expand individuals’ rights by codifying the right to seek redress of grievances before one’s government, the right to defend one’s family. It also guaranteed the right to a speedy trial and the right to confront one’s accusers. Article III wasn’t written to give Democrats political victories it couldn’t earn through the legislative process.

Democrats should stop using the courts in this fashion. That isn’t what they were designed to do. The reason why there are protests in front of the Supreme Court is because Democrats politicized it 50-75 years ago. President Trump is depoliticizing the Supreme Court by picking judges that apply the Constitution to the lawsuits they hear. Democrat justices rule in favor of the outcome they prefer, regardless of whether it fits the Constitution’s mandates.

Expect Democrats to continue their intimidation tactics as President Trump straightens out the judiciary.