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In this post, I wrote about Douglas Kelley’s filing with the Minnesota Supreme Court. First, I’ll admit that I’m not a lawyer. That being said, I’m capable of connecting dots, which is what this lawsuit is about. It’s important to remember what the Court said in their initial ruling. They said that a) the line-item veto was constitutional, b) Minnesotans had the constitutional right to 3 fully-functioning branches of government and c) constitutional provisions can’t be used to accomplish an unconstitutional result.

The Legislature’s attorney, Douglas Kelley, wrote in his filing that “most of the LCC’s funds are encumbered or are needed for other purposes. If the House and the Senate use the LCC’s money for their operations, the LCC will not meet its obligations. Second, procedural requirements must be met to access the funds. Third, the LCC maintains discretion over whether to transfer the LCC’s funds to the House and the Senate.” Using the Supreme Court’s own benchmark that Minnesotans have the right to 3 fully-functioning branches of government, stripping money from LCC operations to the Legislature’s operations necessarily means that the LCC’s operations won’t function as required by Minnesota statutes.

Hypothetically speaking, if the Court rules in Gov. Dayton’s favor, the Office of Legislative Auditor, aka OLA, might get shut down, thereby meaning that there wouldn’t be anyone conducting oversight on the Executive Branch. It’s also true, hypothetically speaking, that if Gov. Dayton decides that he won’t sign a bill funding legislative operations, the office of Revisor of Statutes would close.

If the Court rules in Gov. Dayton’s favor this time, they will have given the executive branch a tool that the governor could use each budget session to get everything they want. All the governor has to do is line-item veto the operational budget for the Legislature and they’d be put into a compromised negotiating position.

Mr. Kelley also notes this in his filing:

By statute, the LCC may transfer a portion of its appropriation to the House and Senate. However, that authority is limited to transfers of “unobligated balances among general fund appropriations to the Legislature.”

That’s important because of this information:

The executive director originally designated $14,072,000 of the LCC’s general fund appropriation of $17,383,000 for fiscal year 2018 as “encumbered,” because it is anticipated to be needed for compensation in fiscal year 2018. A significant portion of the appropriations to the LCC for fiscal years 2018 and 2019 have a dedicated purpose in law:

  1. Office of the Legislative Auditor: $6,744,000 the first year and $6,564,000 the second year, with $130,000 the first year being for a transit financial activity review;
  2. Revisor of Statutes: $6,430,000 the first year, and $6,093,000 the second year, with $250,000 of this amount the first year for upgrades and repairs to the information technology data center; and
  3. Legislative Reference Library: $1,622,000 the first year and $1,445,000 the second year, with $177,000 in the first year being for a digital preservation project.

It’s difficult imagining the Supreme Court essentially wiping out these specific appropriations. Anything’s possible because Gov. Dayton has done his best to stack the Supreme Court with DFL political operatives. Still, the Court painted itself into a corner with its initial ruling.

Finally, it’s important to remember that this Court hasn’t been a portrait in courage. They’ve tap-danced on the head of a pin to avoid making a ruling on the constitutionality of Gov. Dayton’s actions. Let’s hope I’m right in saying that the DFL will always do the right thing … when it’s the only option left.

According to this article, Minnesota State AG Lori Swanson “plans to join suit against Trump over ending DACA.” If she joins that lawsuit, she’s guaranteed to lose. That isn’t just my opinion. It’s Eric Columbus’ opinion, too.

Columbus worked in the Obama/Holder Justice Department. Further, he’s told his Twitter followers that “But on 6/29, ten state AGs wrote DOJ threatening to sue to kill DACA unless Trump agrees by 9/5 to phase it out. Sad to say, I agree with the Trump administration that such a challenge to DACA is very likely to succeed.”

That’s because the arguments against DACA are identical to the arguments against DAPA. In the Supreme Court’s ruling on DAPA, the Court finished in a 4-4 tie. With Justice Gorsuch now filling that 9th spot, it’s difficult to picture him ruling in President Obama’s favor. Simply put, the evidence in this case isn’t in dispute. President Obama’s EO included new benefits for illegal immigrants. I quoted Greg Jarrett in this post as saying “At the end of the 19th century, the U.S. Supreme Court declared that congress has ‘plenary power’ (meaning full and complete) to regulate immigration. Derived from Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution, the doctrine is based on the concept that immigration is a question of national sovereignty, relating to a nation’s right to define its own borders and restrict entrance therein. As the high court observed, ‘Over no conceivable subject is the legislative power of Congress more complete.'”

But I digress.

MPR’s article says “The lawsuit filed Wednesday says rescinding DACA will injure state-run colleges and universities, upset workplaces and damage companies and economies that include immigrants covered under the program.” It’s worth noting that isn’t a legal argument. It’s a political argument. That should tell people everything they need to know about Swanson’s motivation in joining the lawsuit. Further, the argument is irrelevant. Even if everything they say is accurate, it’s irrelevant because President Obama overstepped his authority in implementing DACA. That’s the only thing of any importance.

More than anything else, this lawsuit is an attempt by Democrats to make a political case and score political points. It fails on both counts. Does anyone think that voters will walk into a voting booth in November, 2018 and say ‘I can’t vote for the Republican because these attorneys general filed a lawsuit’?

It’s time for Ms. Swanson to admit what Minnesota voters know — that she isn’t a primetime player.

In his lawyers’ briefs, Gov. Dayton’s arrogance shines through in stunning, repulsive fashion. This article highlights both sides’ arguments.

Let’s start with the arguments that Gov. Dayton’s attorneys made. In their filing, Gov. Dayton’s attorneys said “The Governor has explicit and unqualified authority under the Minnesota Constitution to veto any line item of appropriation. The Minnesota Constitution authorizes the Governor’s line-item vetoes, without any qualification as to the Governor’s subjective intent or purpose.”

Technically, that’s true. Then again, no right is absolute. Each right must pass a balancing test. That’s why rights don’t come “without any qualification.” It’s arrogant for Gov. Dayton’s attorneys essentially argue that a governor’s right to shape appropriations through the governor’s line-item authority is more important than the people’s right to representation. The line-item veto is a budget tool, nothing more. If the line-item veto disappeared, governors would have one less tool to shape budgets. If the legislature disappeared, the people would lose their representation. It isn’t difficult to argue that the people Losing their right to representation is infinitely more important than giving governors an additional budget tool.

The Legislature’s argument is that “Without injunctive relief, Plaintiffs are unable to fulfill their constitutional obligations, will not be able to represent their constituents, and the People of the State of Minnesota are deprived of their constitutionally-mandated voice in the administration of their government.”

If Minnesota governors lost the line-item veto, they’d lose a budget-shaping tool. If the people lost their right to representation, democracy would immediately disappear. In filing their brief, Gov. Dayton’s attorneys are arguing against democracy. In filing their brief, the Legislature’s attorneys argue for full-throated democracy.

If the court get this one wrong, the judges that sided with Gov. Dayton should be immediately impeached and removed from office.

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During his testimony, Jim Comey admitted that President Trump had the right to fire Comey. Comey also admitted that President Trump had the right to instruct the then-FBI Director to stop his investigation into Gen. Flynn. We know from this transcript, during Sen. Rubio’s cross-examination that Sen. Rubio said “He said, ‘If one of my satellites’ — I imagine, by that, he meant some of the other people surrounding his campaign — ‘did something wrong, it would be great to know that, as well”?

At that point in Mr. Comey’s testimony, it’s pretty clear that President Trump wasn’t interrupting the FBI investigation. Later in Mr. Comey’s testimony, Mr. Comey admitted that he’d sent some information to friend of his so his friend could leak the information to the NYTimes and trigger the appointing of a special counsel.

Here’s what I’m questioning. President Trump wasn’t attempting to hinder Mr. Comey’s investigation. Further, Comey’s a skilled litigator so he knows that many elements of obstruction of justice aren’t present. Gregg Jarett wrote comprehensively about the required elements of obstruction in this article. Specifically, Jarrett wrote “Felony obstruction requires that the person seeking to obstruct a law enforcement investigation act ‘corruptly.’ The statute specifically defines what that includes: threats, lies, bribes, destruction of documents, and altering or concealing evidence. None of that is alleged by Comey.”

I’m questioning Mr. Comey’s integrity because he’s testified that President Trump acted within his authority when the president terminated Comey and because the required elements of obstruction don’t exist.

If that’s true, then what’s Mr. Comey motivation for pushing for a special counsel? President Trump acted lawfully. He certainly didn’t threaten or bribe investigators. He certainly didn’t destroy documents or conceal evidence. At some point, shouldn’t people admit that there’s nothing here? Alan Dershowitz seems to think that we’ve reached that point:

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Ben Domenech’s article highlights the media’s war against President Trump. This isn’t surprising. It’s just disgusting at an unprecedented level. The only thing that’s disgusting at a more unprecedented level is the hyper-partisanship in Pinheadville, aka college campuses.

Domenech’s primary example of the media’s hatred of President Trump is CNN, which he described as having “eight-person panels where not one person defending the administration is represented.” Domenech later wrote “A network that once strove to be centrist in their approach is now openly antagonistic, and will run with the thinnest of scoops for hours at a time in order to make their case against President Trump.” Just this week, CNN had to run a correction. They started with an article titled “Comey expected to refute Trump.” When Comey didn’t refute Trump, they changed the title to “Comey unlikely to judge on obstruction.”

Let’s be clear. CNN and the networks don’t traffic in verifiable information. They traffic in things that make for juicy clickbait. Their primary goal was summed up perfectly in this quote:

analyst Gloria Borger put matters more starkly, saying, ‘Comey is going to dispute the president on this point if he’s asked about it by senators, and we have to assume that he will be. He will say he never assured Donald Trump that he was not under investigation, that that would have been improper for him to do so.’”

Hours later, Ms. Borger had to eat crow. Comey didn’t dispute President Trump’s statements. Ms. Borger’s statement was proven verifiably false in front of 20,000,000 people.

Another important facet of the Hate Trump media’s attack against President Trump is the outright vitriol displayed against him. On Thursday’s late version of Outnumbered, former HRC State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf said that “Six months into President Trump’s presidency, he is best known for impeachment.”

With all due respect to Ms. Harf, that isn’t difficult to believe considering the constant dishonest bombardment by the Democratic Party, especially the media wing of the Democratic Party, aka the MSM.

The Democratic Party is totally invested in taking down President Trump. The media wing of the Democratic Party is essentially frantic about Trump’s obstruction of justice, which has been virtually dismantled by Alan Dershowitz:

and Jonathan Turley:

It’s time for Robert Mueller to close shop and report that making foolish statements isn’t a crime, much less something worthy of high crimes and misdemeanors.

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Rachel Stassen-Berger’s article highlights two frightening facts. First, it highlights the fact that Gov. Dayton doesn’t take his oath of office seriously.

In his oath of office, governors swear to protect the state and federal constitution. When asked “Thursday if he believes he signed an unconstitutional law, Dayton said, ‘It’s fine with me if they (the Supreme Court Justices) decide that.'” In other words, Gov. Dayton doesn’t have a problem if the Minnesota Supreme Court rules that he signed a bill that’s unconstitutional.

That’s actually the least frightening thing from the article. The most frightening quote from the article was Ms. Otto’s statement that “This office belongs to the taxpayers and not to the Legislature. Auditing counties is a core constitutional duty of the office. I will not let this go. I must do everything I can to preserve this function on behalf of the people of Minnesota.”

Actually, Ms. Otto’s statement is frightening on multiple levels but mostly because of this part of Minnesota’s Constitution:

What part of the “duties and salaries of the executive officers shall be prescribed by law” doesn’t Ms. Otto understand? Are we to believe that the duties of the State Auditor are defined by state law but that the duties of those that work for the State Auditor are defined by the Minnesota State Constitution? If the Constitution defines the auditors’ responsibilities, which article and which section are those duties found in?

Simply put, Minnesota’s Constitution established the Office of State Auditor, aka the OSA. That’s indisputable. It’s equally indisputable that the duties and authorities of the OSA aren’t spelled out in the Constitution. That’s because they’re assigned by the legislature and approved by the governor. That’s what happened in 2015.

If the Minnesota Supreme Court rules that the 2015 law is unconstitutional, the justices that ruled it unconstitutional should be impeached and replaced with jurists that are faithful to the Constitution, not to the DFL. Let’s hope it doesn’t come to that. Let’s hope that this is so straightforward that it’s a unanimous ruling against Ms. Otto. Otherwise, the Minnesota Supreme Court would essentially rule in the DFL’s favor the vast majority of the time.

That isn’t justice. That’s hardball politics.

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After Marilyn Mosby dropped the remaining charges against the 6 Baltimore police officers, it didn’t take long for the other shoe to drop. 5 of those 6 officers have filed a civil lawsuit against Ms. Mosby.

According to the article, “In several lawsuits filed earlier this year, Officers William Porter, Edward Nero, Garrett Miller, Lt. Brian Rice, and Sgt. Alicia White alleged defamation, false arrest, false imprisonment, and violation of constitutional rights, among others.” Later in the article, Attorney Michael Glass explained that “These officers were humiliated. Our position is that the charges were brought for a reason other than prosecuting criminal conduct. There was a political motivation and the charges were not supported by evidence.”

The acquittal of these officers, coupled with Ms. Mosby’s attention-grabbing headline will make it easier for these officers to win their lawsuit. Throughout the process, lawyers questioned Ms. Mosby’s decision. Alan Dershowitz was among those that criticized her decision:

One of the key figures in this lawsuit will be Samuel Cogen of the Baltimore Sheriff’s Office. The reason he’ll be important is because Mosby’s prosecutors initially said that he’d conducted an independent investigation. He’s gone under oath since then in an attempt to clear his name:

However, in an affidavit unsealed in the course of Rice’s civil lawsuit, Cogen claimed he in fact did not conduct the investigation. He said he merely signed off on the investigation completed by the state’s attorney’s office which ultimately led to the charges filed against the officers.

The situation is perfect for the plaintiffs. They can approach Cogen and offer to drop his case in exchange for his truthful testimony.

Showing that Mosby’s prosecutorial team embellished the truth will strengthen these officers’ lawsuit.

The remaining charges against the officers in the Freddie Gray case have been dropped. That’s what the Baltimore Sun is reporting.

UPDATE: Fox is now reporting that Marilyn Mosby failed to get a single conviction in the Freddie Gray case.

If I could pass a law or if I could mandate a particular type of behavior, I’d require every senator and every representative from both parties ask the types of probing, cut-through-the-BS questions that Trey Gowdy consistently asks.

Chairman Gowdy isn’t into grandstanding. He isn’t prone to making speeches for the purpose of scoring political points. He’s prone to doing his homework first so he’s a self-taught expert on whatever subject he’s addressing. He’s prone to asking questions that elicit informative, substantive answers that enlighten citizens and exposes politicians.

It isn’t difficult to think that Loretta Lynch was squirming while she was being questioned by Chairman Gowdy. Watch this video and tell me whether you think Chairman Gowdy is making Ms. Lynch squirm. I’m thinking Ms. Lynch’s answers made Mrs. Clinton squirm, too. One of the questions that likely made Mrs. Clinton squirm came when Chairman Gowdy asked Ms. Lynch “Why do you think it’s important to use official email to conduct official business”?

That likely didn’t make Mrs. Clinton squirm as much as when Chairman Gowdy said “I doubt that you even use your usdoj -dot- gov account to send classified information, do you?” Ms. Lynch replied that she didn’t use that account, noting that “we have separate systems. There would be a classified system for that.” That’s when Chairman Gowdy moved in for the kill against Mrs. Clinton:

GOWDY: So not only do you not use personal email. You don’t even use your usdoj -dot- gov account. You’ve got a separate, dedicated system to handle classified information. Why?
LYNCH: We have a separate system to handle security needs.
GOWDY: But my question is why. Why is it important to you to not use your personal email to conduct official business and to use a separate system, more safely-guarded system when you do handle classified information?
GOWDY: But it’s not just a personal preference, is it?
LYNCH: It allows for the protection of the information.

It’s painfully obvious that Hillary knew that was the system. It’s painfully obvious because she once was a US senator who had to obey the rules established by the committee chairs on viewing confidential information. Mrs. Clinton had been to Sensitive Compartmented Information Facilities, aka SCIFs. SCIFs are defined as “accredited area, room, group of rooms, or installation where sensitive compartmented information may be stored, used, discussed, or electronically processed.” Access is limited. Electronic devices aren’t allowed to be brought into a SCIF because of the sensitive information stored in SCIFs.

Knowing about the existence of and the purpose for SCIFs, why did Mrs. Clinton ignore that phalanx of security precautions and use a system that a high school kid could hack into? Was it because Mrs. Clinton didn’t care about protecting top secret information? Or was it because Mrs. Clinton wanted to hide her emails from the public at all costs? Or did she do it for both reasons?

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This Washington Post editorial, published in the Star Tribune, highlights what passes for liberal logic. First, it’s worth highlighting some of the statements made in the editorial.

The editorial says “Citing ‘insufficient evidence,’ Judge Barry G. Williams on Thursday found Officer Caesar R. Goodson Jr. not guilty of all charges in the April 2015 death of Gray.” That’s the Post’s way of saying the prosecution couldn’t prove that Freddie Gray’s rebellious actions didn’t cause his own death.

What the Post omitted is the fact that Mosby’s office conducted their own investigation and that police questioned the thoroughness of that investigation. In fact, this article highlights the rift between Mosby’s office and the Baltimore PD.

Specifically, Detective Dawnyell Taylor said “As I read over the narrative it had several things that I found to be inconsistent with our investigation,” adding: “I thought the statements in the narrative were misquoted.” It gets worse:

The claims in her account underscore a rift between prosecutors and police that began in the spring of last year, when the two agencies worked together on parallel tracks to investigate Gray’s death.

Some police officials believe prosecutors moved too quickly and have questioned their findings, while prosecutors have raised questions about whether police were seeking to absolve the officers of wrongdoing. Prosecutors have accused Taylor in court of trying to sabotage their case.

Here’s Det. Taylor:

Frankly, Mosby’s prosecution of these police officers is a sham. A year before the first case went to trial, legendary law professor Alan Dershowitz criticized Mosby’s office:

The mayor outrageously said we’re going to get justice for the victim, the family and people of Baltimore, never mentioning the defendants. Under our Constitution, the only people who are entitled to justice are the defendants. They are presumed innocent, they need due process of law, and the mayor and the state attorney have made it virtually impossible for these defendants to get a fair trial. They have been presumed guilty.

More than a few attorneys have suggested that Mosby should have her license suspended. Others have said she’s committed an offense that warrants disbarment.

Prosecuting police officers is always difficult and, as former state Sen. Clarence M. Mitchell IV pointed out, it showed “courage to bring charges when it appeared that the police had done something wrong.”

It didn’t take courage to railroad these officers. It took a reckless disregard for the rules of evidence. The fact that Mosby’s office hasn’t convicted the officers of a single criminal count shows that the “$6.4 million settlement” to the Gray family was meant to taint the jury pool. That strategy apparently failed.

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