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DOJ Plays Politics With Swalwell “January 6” Claims Against Congressman Mo Brooks

DOJ Plays Politics With Swalwell “January 6” Claims Against Congressman Mo Brooks

At his confirmation hearing for Attorney General, Merrick Garland pledged to “protect the independence of the Department [of Justice] from partisan influence in law enforcement.” Instead he has politically turbocharged it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X6BkbDNPXy0

During the last presidential administration, opponents of Donald Trump habitually criticized him for “politicizing” the Department of Justice. They claimed that he called for the DOJ and the FBI to investigate his perceived enemies and that he improperly meddled in the prosecutions and sentencings of loyalists like Roger Stone and Gen. Michael Flynn.

Joe Biden pledged to keep politics out of the DOJ, telling Jake Tapper with an air of high dudgeon that “It’s not my Justice Department. It’s the people’s Justice Department.”

What a whopper that was. The Justice Department is more politically motivated now than it’s ever been.

Biden has appointed defund-the-police zealots Vanita Gupta and Kristen Clarke to high-ranking posts at the DOJ – placing Gupta at the number 3 spot and Clarke as the head of the Department’s civil rights enforcement arm. Biden also has nominated gun control lobbyist and gun ban proponent David Chipman to head the ATF.

In April, the FBI conducted raids at the homes and offices of Trump lawyers Rudy Giuliani and Victoria Toensing.

In June, it filed a Voting Rights Act lawsuit against Georgia to overturn its new election integrity law – an “obvious[ ] political stunt” whose complaint “reads more like an op-ed in Mother Jones than a legal case,” said Dan McLaughlin in National Review.

And, of course, the DOJ has labeled all protesters who were present at the Capitol on January 6 as insurrectionists, domestic terrorists and white supremacists and is prosecuting them accordingly (as I wrote about here and here).

Its latest political move has to do with Democratic congressman Eric Swalwell’s lawsuit against Republican congressman Morris “Mo” Brooks and others for deliberately instigating the January 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol.  Last week, Attorney General Merrick Garland refused to provide a routine “certification” that, under a special federal statute that applies to employees of the federal government, would have allowed Brooks to be dropped as a party from most of the claims in the case and the United States substituted as a defendant in his place.

By refusing to issue that certification to Brooks, Garland’s DOJ ignored well-settled law for what appears to be partisan political purposes, and left Brooks to fend for himself – and to incur what are sure to be crushing defense costs – in the action.

Rep. Eric Swalwell’s Lawsuit

In March, Congressman Eric Swalwell filed suit against Brooks asserting that he conspired with President Trump, Donald Trump, Jr., and Rudy Giuliani to instigate the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol and to prevent members of Congress, including Swalwell, from certifying Joe Biden as the winner of the 2020 presidential election.

To support these claims, Swalwell points to five post-election day tweets that Brooks sent out:

On November 5, 2020, Brooks tweeted that he “lack[ed] faith that this was an honest election” and said that as a House member, he would be “very hesitant to certify the results of this election if Joe Biden wins.”

Later that day, Brooks tweeted, “Count Every LEGAL Vote!”

On Nov. 19, Brooks retweeted a journalist who quoted him as saying that Congress has the “absolute right to reject the submitted electoral votes of any state,” and that Brooks stated, “I’m not going to put my name in support of any state that employs an election system that I don’t have confidence in.”

On Nov. 27, Brooks tweeted that, in his opinion, Joe Biden did not win a lawful majority of votes in Georgia, and that Congress therefore “should reject any Georgia submission of 16 electoral college votes for Joe Biden.”

On Jan. 5, Brooks tweeted that he would be speaking at the Stop the Steal rally the following day at the invitation of President Trump, and that he would “tell the American people about the election system weaknesses that the Socialist Democrats exploited to steal this election.”

Swalwell’s complaint also alleges that Brooks “incited the violence at the Capitol” on Jan. 6 by speaking at the Stop the Steal rally that day and saying the following:

We are great because our ancestors sacrificed their blood, their sweat, their tears, their fortunes, and sometimes their lives ….We are here today because America is at risk unlike it has been in decades, and perhaps centuries …. We are not gonna let the socialists rip the heart out of our country. We are not gonna let them continue to corrupt our elections and steal from us our God-given right to control our nation’s destiny …. Today is the day American patriots start taking down names and kicking ass! Now, our ancestors sacrificed their blood, their sweat, their tears, their fortunes, and sometimes their lives, to give us, their descendants, an America that is the greatest nation in world history. So I have a question for you: Are you willing to do the same? My answer is yes. Louder! Are you willing to do what it takes to fight for America? Louder!! Will you fight for America?!

The Westfall Act

A federal statute called the Westfall Act provides that federal employees cannot be held liable for acts they undertake in the course of their official duties.  

When a federal employee is sued for wrongful conduct, the Act empowers the Attorney General to certify that the employee “was acting within the scope of his office or employment at the time of the incident out of which the claim arose.”  Upon the issuance of this certification, the statute calls for the employee to be dismissed from the action, and the United States substituted as defendant in his or her place.

If, however, the Department declines to issue a certification, the case proceeds against the employee in his or her personal capacity.

In response to Swalwell’s lawsuit, Brooks submitted a request to the Department of Justice for certification under the Westfall Act that he was acting within the scope of his office or employment as a Member of Congress when he issued the subject tweets and spoke at The Ellipse during the Jan. 6 rally.

When the DOJ failed to respond to Brooks’ request, he petitioned the court to certify that he had been acting within the scope of his office or employment during the incidents alleged in the complaint. The court ordered the DOJ to respond to Brooks’ petition by July 27.

Last week, the DOJ filed its response to Brooks’ petition. In it, the DOJ asserted that that Brooks’ tweets and rally speech constituted “electioneering,” which is not within the job duties of a member of Congress.

For that reason, the Attorney General refused to issue the certification under the Westfall Act.

“Scope of Employment” Definition

Whether an employee is acting within the scope of his employment is determined by the law of the state (or the District of Columbia) in which the relevant conduct occurred.
Since the challenged conduct here took place in Washington, D.C., the law there applies.

The Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit has been explicit that it does not take a narrow approach to “scope of employment” issues, but applies the test “very expansively and in essence ask[s] whether the defendant merely was on duty or on the job when committing the alleged tort.”

Further, the D.C. Circuit has explained that because a congressman’s “ability to do his job as a legislator effectively is tied … to the Member’s relationship with … his constituents,” activities that enhance that relationship will be deemed to be within the scope of the legislator’s employment.

Brooks’ Tweets Were “Within the Scope”

In his petition, Congressman Brooks provided evidence that his tweets had been drafted by Brooks or his congressional staff and “issued from a congressional government building” during “normal congressional government office working hours” on “a congressional government Twitter account” using “congressional government electronic devices.”

More importantly, all of the subject matter of his tweets related to a matter of legislative concern election integrity – and a pending and critically important congressional issue: “whether to accept or reject electoral college vote submissions by various states” on Jan. 6 pursuant to the federal Electoral Count Act.

Since, under the D.C. Circuit’s standard, Rep. Brooks was clearly “on the job” when sending out his tweets, there simply was no legal basis for Attorney General Garland’s to have refused to issue the Westfall certification for those acts.

Speaking at the Rally was “Within the Scope”

Similarly, Brooks’ speech at the Stop the Steal rally was performed within the scope of his employment.

On this issue, the D.C. Circuit’s decision in Council on American Islamic Relations v. Ballenger is instructive. In that case, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (“CAIR”) sued Congressman Cass Ballenger for defamation after Ballenger remarked that CAIR was the “fund-raising arm for Hezbollah” during a conversation with a reporter about Ballenger’s marital difficulties.

In analyzing whether Ballenger’s statement had been made during the scope of his employment, the D.C. Circuit explained that the proper test was whether Ballenger’s “underlying conduct,” not the substance of what he said, was the kind of conduct a Member of Congress was employed to perform.

And speaking at rallies is a common activity for legislators.

  • This week, the Texas Democrats who fled to D.C. from Texas will join more than 100 state legislators from across the country at a rally outside the U.S. Capitol to speak in support of the For the People Act.
  • Two weeks ago, Democratic Congressman Hank Johnson spoke at a protest rally put on by Black Votes Matter that started at the U.S. Supreme Court and made its way to the Hart Senate Office building several blocks away. The rally was held to demand passage of the For The People Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act.
  • In May, Democratic Representatives Rashida Tlaib and Andre Carson spoke at a “Free Palestine” rally outside the State Department.
  • In April, Democratic Congresswoman Maxine Waters spoke at a protest rally over the police killing of Daunte Wright in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota in the midst of the Derek Chauvin murder trial.
  • In the fall, Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortes addressed climate change activist protesters at a rally in front of the Democratic National Committee.
  • Last year, Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer spoke at a rally of abortion rights supporters outside the Supreme Court, during which he threatened that Justices Kavanaugh and Gorsuch would “pay the price” if they “released the whirlwind” by voting to limit abortion rights.

The list goes on. Did anyone think twice when these legislators participated in these rallies? Of course not, because speaking engagements such as these are a routine part of a legislator’s duties.

Moreover, under the controlling law in the D.C. Circuit, because Brooks’ tweets and speech were geared to appeal to his constituents, they fell comfortably within the scope of his authorized duties.

Substance of Brooks’ Speech at The Ellipse

Under Ballenger, the substance of Brooks’ tweets and rally speech are entirely irrelevant to the question of whether he was acting within the scope of his employment at the time he gave it.

Nevertheless, all of his remarks had to do with whether, under the federal Electoral Count Act, Brooks would be lodging objections to the appointment of electors who he believed had not been “lawfully certified” by their state’s governor due to constitutional violations and perceived fraud.

The notion that talking about these objections placed Brooks’ actions outside of his congressional duties is risible since it has been a tradition of the Democrats to actually lodge such objections to Republican electoral votes in several presidential contests.

In 1877, the entire electoral delegations from Florida, Louisiana, South Carolina, Vermont, and Wisconsin – whose votes were won by Republican Rutherford B. Hayes – were challenged by Democrats.

In 1969, Senator Edward Muskie of Maine and Rep. James O’Hara of Michigan – both Democrats – objected to counting the vote of a faithless elector from North Carolina.

In 2001, members of the Congressional Black Caucus, also all Democrats, attempted to block Florida’s electoral votes, which had gone to Republican George W. Bush, from being counted, claiming “overwhelming evidence of official misconduct” and “deliberate fraud.”

Four years later, after election results indicated that Bush had won reelection against Democratic challenger John Kerry, Sen. Barbara Boxer and Rep. Stephanie Tubbs Jones – both Democrats – objected to Ohio’s electoral votes, which Bush had won, claiming widespread “irregularities.”

Most recently, at the 2017 joint session after the Trump-Clinton election contest, several Democratic House members challenged the results, claiming a “widespread violation of the law.”

Equally absurd is the DOJ’s contention that Brooks’ exhortation to “fight for America” during his speech at the Stop the Steal rally placed his conduct outside the scope of his congressional duties. That remark was obviously nothing more than a rhetorical flourish – and one that has been used time and again by those on the political left.

In 2016, Planned Parenthood pledged to “fight like hell” to protect women’s health. At the 2017 Women’s March, the participants vowed to “fight like hell” for women’s rights. In her farewell speech to the Senate, Barbara Boxer said, “A good leader knows when to pick up the gloves and fight like hell.” In 2017, Elizabeth Warren declared that Democrats need to “fight like hell” to stop Republicans from repealing Obamacare. Last June, Chuck Schumer proclaimed that Senate Democrats were going to “fight like hell” to pass the Justice in Policing Act. After Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died several months ago, Democratic Senator Richard Blumenthal promised to “fight like hell” to prevent the confirmation of a new justice before the inauguration of the next president. Rep. Adam Schiff said the same thing.

On none of these occasions was the phrase “fight like hell” ever perceived as a call for immediate, physical violence.

DOJ Argues “Campaign Activity””

Perhaps realizing as much, the DOJ contended that Brooks’ actions were “not within the scope of the office or employment of a Member of the House of Representatives” because they constituted electioneering or campaign activity.

But how could Brooks’ tweets and speech about the election have been either electioneering or campaign activity when they occurred after Election Day?

Further, taken to its logical conclusion, the DOJ’s argument was that any discussion about election integrity and the certification of electoral votes would be permanently out of bounds for federal legislators. Such a rule is nonsensical, though, since the Twelfth Amendment and the Electoral Count Act specifically empower and obligate Congress to consider and debate that issue. Brooks was speaking to the crowd in large part about his duties as a U.S. congressman to certify the results of the 2020 presidential election.

In any event, under the governing law in the D.C. Circuit, even if Brooks had issued his tweets and given his rally speech out of a personal desire to see Trump declared as the winner of the election, his actions would still have been within the scope of his office or employment as long as at least some of his motivation was to enhance his relationship with his constituents.

Brooks says that was the case, and the DOJ hasn’t offered any evidence to disprove that assertion.

Historical Examples

A quick review of some other cases in which the conduct of federal employees was found to be within the scope of their office or employment highlights how ridiculous it was for Merrick Garland to have denied Westfall Act certification to Rep. Brooks here.

  • In McIntyre v. U.S., FBI agent John Connolly was found to be acting within the scope of his office and employment when he revealed to James “Whitey” Bulger and Stephen “the Rifleman” Flemmi – members of a violent, Boston-based Winter Hill Gang – the identity of a government informant who was thereafter murdered by Bulger and Flemmi.
  • In Rasul v. Myers, the court found that the “authorization, implementation and supervision of torture” was within the scope of employment of military officers who interrogated detainees at the U.S. Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay.
  • In Wilson v. Libby, the Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit held that deliberately disclosing a covert agent’s identity fell within an employee’s scope of employment with the United States despite the fact that it violated several federal statutes and threatened the security of the nation.

It’s deranged that the federal employees in these cases were entitled to certification for their outrageous behavior, but that Mo Brooks — who simply exercised his First Amendment rights on Twitter and at The Ellipse — wasn’t because he dared express opinions unpopular with the political left.

Next Steps

In Gutierrez de Martinez v. Lamagno, the Supreme Court held that a party may request judicial review of the Attorney General’s scope-of-employment determination, since that certification is “the first, but not the final word” on whether the United States should have been substituted as a defendant.

Brooks has now done that. Today, Brooks asked the assigned federal judge – Obama-appointee Amit Mehta – to grant him the certification that was denied to him by the DOJ.

If Mehta denies the motion, Brooks can appeal to the D.C. Circuit, but that, of course, is the court over which Garland served before becoming Attorney General, including a seven-year stint as its Chief Judge between 2013 and 2020.

At his confirmation hearing for Attorney General, Merrick Garland pledged to “protect the independence of the Department [of Justice] from partisan influence in law enforcement.”

Instead he has politically turbocharged it.

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Comments

Last week, Attorney General Merrick Garland refused to provide a routine “certification” that, under a special federal statute that applies to employees of the federal government, would have allowed Brooks to be dropped as a party from most of the claims in the case and the United States substituted as a defendant in his place.

During his confirmation vote Garland won the backing of 22 Republican senators – including McConnell. Don’t believe their protests that they didn’t know: these GOP senators KNEW he was a far left extremist. That is why they voted for him.

    There is effectively no opposition party. The Republicans make sure the priorities of the donor class get serviced, and they fundraise off the priorities of the base, while at the same time making sure no progress is made on those issues.

    They wouldn’t even fund the wall when it was fully in their power to do so and Trump had to end run them to get any construction at all. They are controlled opposition which exists only to put on a production of Failure Theater where they say if they only had one more vote, or one more House of Congress, or if you only send a few more dollars…

    They hate the conservative base every bit as much as the Democrats, and they sneer at them as unsophisticated rubes who have to be fooled and brought along slowly.

vos sort fun yid nomen zeyer kind merrik? der tip vos shtupt kleyne eydishe kinder in der shprits arayn

    DSHornet in reply to avi natan. | August 6, 2021 at 4:04 am

    Try that in English.
    .

      The Friendly Grizzly in reply to DSHornet. | August 6, 2021 at 6:48 am

      Near as I can tell, it is pidjin German, but can’t make any sense of it.

        It’s a poor attempt at Yiddish by someone who doesn’t speak it, and used a dictionary or Google Translate.

        It says, or tries to say, “What kind of Jew names their child Merrick? The kind that pushes small Jewish children into the shower.”

        The answer is, the same kind of Jew who names their child Irving, Hyman, Milton, Marvin, Sheldon, etc., all pure WASP names until so many Jews adopted them in an attempt to pass that now no self-respecting Goy would think of using them.

Wouldn’t it be a daisy to discover that the 1/6 party was entirely produced and directed by the DNC from the word go, specifically in order to keep congresspeople like Mo Brooks from carrying out their promise to decertify electoral votes?

Trump had a right to request election audits in several Democrat districts where there were irregularities, perhaps fraud, in evidence. The people had a right to assemble on public ground. Pelosi et al were poorly considered to refuse a federal offer for crowd management. There was no immediate, probable, not even plausible cause to murder Ashli Babbitt. The Democrats are, once again, playing with a double-edged scalpel, with their conventional belief that they can abort the baby, cannibalize her profitable parts, sequester her carbon pollutants, and have her, too. Time will tell if their choice is politically viable.

    Danny in reply to n.n. | August 6, 2021 at 3:30 am

    You know what would have been better than triple over time in the court of public opinion trying to replicate the Democrats 2016 strategy without ANY power they needed to make it work?

    Use the god damned courts by filing claim of fraud or shutting up for once.

    We have a legal system stop pretending we don’t. There isn’t a single European country with a transition period where the loser could go to court and air out their grievances that is unique to us and Trump made a deliberate decision to avoid doing that.

    Oh yes he brought claims to court that had nothing to do with fraud where when asked if fraud was being alleged Giuliani said NO.

    He spent 3 months making people as angry as he could knowing he wouldn’t hurt Joe Biden one bit, a few hundred people he enraged stupidly rioted and we (and they) are still paying for Trump’s decision.

    There is defending Moe Brooks against the absurdly fascist DOJ of Der Garland. There is no defense of Donald Trump’s behavior just as there is no defense of Hillary Clinton’s or Stacey Abrams behavior.

    Not good enough for a judge? Fine not good enough for me either and it shouldn’t be good enough for you if it isn’t good enough to even present to a judge.

      But we don’t have a functioning legal system. Not even remotely.

      We have a system that allows the Democrats to do as they wish, while those on the right are persecuted for doing perfectly normal things like calling foreign governments when they are appointed to positions requiring that they do so, or calling for a rally to protest how an election was conducted. Dissent has been criminalized.

      That was the whole point of the last four years FFS! The elites were making it as clear as is humanly possible that there is no recourse to be found in the law for anyone on the right. And the reason they can get away with it is that there are a lot of rubes out there who are impressed by credentials and still think the old forms and institutions are anything but thoroughly corrupt and partisan. You pretty much have to be entirely brain dead to have lived through what was done to Trump and not realize any of this.

        Dathurtz in reply to Thatch. | August 6, 2021 at 6:20 am

        Don’t bother. He’s basically Mitt Romney.

        Danny in reply to Thatch. | August 6, 2021 at 8:59 pm

        We do have a justice system, Trump had three months to bring claims of fraud into a court of law he made a very deliberate choice not to which tells me that he has no case, and does not think there was a single state flipped by fraud and he is aware he lost.

        Is there corruption in the justice system from the federal bureaucracy?

        Yes

        Want to fix it?

        Stop empowering them by adopting lies, truth has a power of its own.

        By lying through his teeth Trump empowered the Democrats in a gigantic way on his way out, he handed them the senate allowing them to confirm radicals at will, and he made a few hundred people so angry they did the dumbest thing in American history and now their lives are over as a result.

        Demand something of our politicians, like integrity.

      Milhouse in reply to Danny. | August 6, 2021 at 11:18 am

      Danny, the problem is that to challenge an election in court you need to be able to identify enough specific vote to change the result, and you need to individually prove, in each case, that that specific vote was fraudulently cast, and that it was cast for the declared winner. In most cases even identifying the specific fraudulent votes is difficult, and proving it is even harder because the evidence doesn’t exist or can’t be found — both because it’s inherently difficult to find it, and because the Democrats have deliberately engineered the system to make it even more difficult. Finding it within the short time frame available is effectively impossible.

      It’s like fishing for five-inch fish with a six-inch net, and then the Democrats take it away and make you fish with a twelve-inch net instead, while putting something in the water that shrinks the fish to three inches. If you keep at it long enough you’ll still land a few fish that are particularly unlucky, but you’ll never catch enough.

        Danny in reply to Milhouse. | August 7, 2021 at 4:13 pm

        A tough case in three months?

        If you are a prosecutor and you could be letting a man who committed a triple homicide free by rushing your case you have a good point

        Or if you are a defense attorney and your client will go to jail for your life if you get something wrong

        Or if millions are at stake etc

        The worst possible result Trump could have gotten from entering a courtroom with claims of fraud would have been (assuming he showed up with some kind of evidence) “Plaintiff has not produced enough evidence to substantiate his claims”. It should also be noted that the cases Trump brought all meet the definition of frivolous. Once you concede that all cast votes are legitimate votes…..your case is gone. If you are willing to do a frivolous case to highlight that PA didn’t follow it’s state constitution (an issue nobody in or out of PA cared about) why wouldn’t you do the same thing to highlight evidence of voter fraud something significantly more serious?

        The difference between Trump 2020 and Hillary 2016 is that Hillary had power and by being a pure 100% evil force ruined the presidency of Trump with that power (although I should note if Trump had just declassified everything in Jan. 2017 instead of trying to play footsie with and ask for congressional subpoena without telling anyone in congress what had happened the results would have been very different). Trump by behaving like Hillary is ruining our side, this narrative has given the Democrats 50 senate seats, has divided our side (just look at the conspiracy theories about Mike Pence that are basically right wingers trying to come up with a reason not to like him besides the absurd idea he could have refused to count electoral votes he didn’t like), likely is going to hand the governors mansion of Georgia to the Democrats, and has tied up massive amounts of Republican political capital.

        The Arizona state senate leadership is in the process of being humiliated on a national stage.

          Milhouse in reply to Danny. | August 8, 2021 at 12:46 am

          They didn’t have three months. They had barely one month.

          The case based on PA’s not following the rules made by its legislature is not at all frivolous.

          Trump’s lawyers didn’t allege fraud, because they had no evidence of the kind that could be accepted by a court. As I wrote earlier, the kind of evidence you need is almost unobtainable. You’d have to prove tens of thousands of individual instances; you can’t just point to statistical anomalies, no matter how convincing, and say there just has to be fraud in there somewhere. You have to show exactly where, and in each separate instance have admissible evidence. This can be done, maybe, when the margin is under 100 votes. Not when it’s this big.

          None of which means there wasn’t massive fraud. There was, but the truth is nobody has any idea how massive. Nobody will ever know who “should” have won that election. (If by “should” we mean, ignoring all the shenanigans before the election, which candidate got more legitimately-cast votes in each of the relevant states.)

        Danny in reply to Milhouse. | August 8, 2021 at 2:13 am

        I couldn’t directly reply to your counter but

        1. After you concede the votes cast are legit that is the end of the case. It is something that I wish Stacey Abrams, Hillary Clinton and other Democrats as well as Trump would concede.

        2. Trump actually did better in Philadelphia than Republicans have in decades. If he had not regressed 2% with the white working class he would have easily won PA and would still be in 1600 PA Ave. I have gone over reasons I think he regressed a lot here (and my popularity here reflects that, nobody on the right wants to hear that people paying net zero taxes don’t want to have their health insurance prices go up in order to pay for lowering taxes for the wealthy).

        3. The worst case scenario to what you described is “the examples of fraud plaintiff provided aren’t overwhelming and certainly not enough to claim they changed the outcome of the election” being in the decision dismissing the case. Judicial decisions go over claims and evidence brought by both sides, so it wouldn’t have been all negative; provided he brought something.

        4. Statistical anomalies related to mail in votes aren’t that impressive. Our side is less afraid of the virus, and a lot more inclined to believe in election day over election season, both of which translates to significantly less vote by mail and more in person vote.

        So far all that I have seen done is the MI state legislature commissioned a study that came back negative for fraud on a scale to flip MI, AZ has also commissioned a flop but unlike MI where the state party leadership competently acted like adults and waited for results of their study with no leaks to the press, no pressure being put on the team they hired and no grandstanding the AZ leadership incompetently behaved like the Mueller team and are in the process of being humiliated and making us look bad despite the fact that control of the senate could be decided in AZ.

        He also did have months, he had the months of November, and December, and even early January. More than enough time to find a thousand examples in WI if there was fraud on a widescale level for example. Coming in with not enough at least lets me know there could be merit to what he claims, not showing up tells me he is either an idiot or just trying to cover himself with a narrative.

        It would have been a challenging case being brought probably without enough examples of voter fraud, it also would have shown Trump believes what he is saying. No case at all screamed out to me “he is lying”.

Because. They. Are. Evil. Assholes

Think of the AG’s Trump had

F-K me…

Garland is likely the most partisan AG and the weakest intellect that has ever served as AG. I have no idea how he became a Federal Judge.
He seems to be almost bereft of knowledge of law, honesty or honor.

This is a very problematic article.

“April, the FBI conducted raids at the homes and offices of Trump lawyers Rudy Giuliani and Victoria Toensing.”

Is the suggestion here that there was limited evidence? That seems spurious given the public record. It’s also pretty clear that Trump think Guilliani is a no hoper given he won’t help prop him up. Left him out to dry by all accounts.

“DOJ has labeled all protesters who were present at the Capitol on January 6 as insurrectionists, domestic terrorists and white supremacists and is prosecuting them accordingly”

The vast amounts of evidence supports the above, law enforcement testimony such as black officers being called the n word, video footage. The fact the entire motive of the breach was in relation to preventing the electoral vote count. How could it be anything other than described?

“Eric Swalwell’s lawsuit against Republican congressman Morris “Mo” Brooks and others for deliberately instigating the January 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol. ”

Ignoring well settled law? No not even close, mo brooks was not acting in a capacity that remotely relates a government function. What government function was he performing other than a speech outside of his congressional duties at an event trying to thwart the legitimate handover of power. To say otherwise is to give carte blanche to literally anything as a congressperson etc. Got to draw the line somewhere and a nut job claiming election fraud and provoking a crowd to prevent a constitutional process seems pretty fair to me.

    Milhouse in reply to mark311. | August 8, 2021 at 1:02 am

    I can usually follow your arguments and see where you went wrong, but this time all I can say is “what the **** are you talking about?”

    No, there is nothing on the public record supporting the raids on Giuliani and Toensing.

    No, there is no evidence that all, or even most, or even any of those who entered the Capitol were insurrectionists, or domestic terrorists, and certainly not white supremacists.

    The overwhelming majority were completely peaceful protesters, who did nothing but trespass on premises that were officially closed at the time — and most of them had no idea it was officially closed, since they entered after the guards had abandoned their posts and left the doors wide open. BLM/antifa, however, is in open insurrection against the USA and yet the Democrat Party openly and officially supports it and the Vice President helped bail its soldiers out so they could continue terrorizing people.

    There is no video footage and no evidence at all of black officers being called the n word. All you have is the word of one fucking liar who is a disgrace to the uniform. The moment he claimed, under oath, that Brian Sicknick had died of injuries inflicted by the protesters he should have been arrested for perjury. He shouldn’t even have been allowed to get to this lie. That you rely on his word reflects on your own credibility.

    The fact the entire motive of the breach was in relation to preventing the electoral vote count. How could it be anything other than described?

    Huh? How does that make it any of the things described? The whole point was that these were people convinced that the election was being stolen before their eyes, and they wanted to prevent it. That’s the exact opposite of insurrection. It’s certainly not terrorism, and it’s on a completely different plant from white supremacism.

    mo brooks was not acting in a capacity that remotely relates a government function. What government function was he performing other than a speech outside of his congressional duties

    Giving speeches is pretty much 99% of what his congressional duties involve!!! The event was to protest what was going on in the Capitol; protest is inherently part of his job, and besides which is 100% protected by the first amendment.

    Got to draw the line somewhere and a nut job claiming election fraud and provoking a crowd to prevent a constitutional process seems pretty fair to me.

    I think this says it all. You have absolutely no regard for the freedom of speech whatsoever.

I think if we win 2022 we need to use congress’ ability to issue a vote of no confidence and be careful with who we nominate to the senate to make sure a majority of senators vote to remove Garland.

    mark311 in reply to Danny. | August 6, 2021 at 3:58 am

    On what basis? I mean seriously compare the man’s actions with Bill Barr. Believe me it would look bad for Barr not the other way around.

      Danny in reply to mark311. | August 6, 2021 at 8:45 pm

      William Barr never did anything bad in his entire term as head of the DOJ you just feel we are sub human and that any Republican is a criminal and are here in bad faith.

        mark311 in reply to Danny. | August 7, 2021 at 8:29 pm

        You haven’t paid attention have you. Barr lied his head of to protect trump deliberately misconstruing the mueller report and interfered in investigations to benefit trump and his allies.

        I did have a much longer comment on this but apparently this site deletes comments and generally doesn’t want me to comment. Most of my comments don’t appear anymore

          Milhouse in reply to mark311. | August 8, 2021 at 1:06 am

          As Mary McCarthy said of that communist bitch Lillian Hellman, every word you wrote is false, including ‘and’ and ‘but.’

          Danny in reply to mark311. | August 8, 2021 at 2:15 am

          That is 100% a lie according to Mueller.

          @mark311, you wrote, “I did have a much longer comment on this but apparently this site deletes comments and generally doesn’t want me to comment. Most of my comments don’t appear anymore”. Waaaahhhhh!

          I have taken the time to explain this to you, but you seem more interested in playing victim. We all know who you are, @mark311, even if our readers don’t. Here is my response to your previous whining about LI’s comment moderation:

          LI has a comment policy, and if you violate it, your comments will be removed. One of the primary policy points that you violate with vile consistency is ad hominem attacks on our readers. Note that we, of course, remove vile name-calling directed at you. Which I am guessing you think is just fine? In fact, I recall you THANKING ME for it not so long ago.

          Your most recent comments that have been removed include your calling various LI readers a “moron,” a “selfish idiot,” someone who is “on crack,” someone who is “full of shit” another who is just “bullshit,” people you deem a “fuckwit,” an “idiot” (sans the “selfish” modifier), “truly a moron,” “a moron,” “childish,” “dumb,” and a “fucking idiot.” That’s just in the past week or so.

          Whatever goodwill you have among LI readers is due to our removing your ad hominem attacks on our readers–i.e. they don’t see you as you really are, as all of us here at LI see you–, so you should be thanking your lucky stars that our readers don’t see the hate and bile you spew from your condescending, hate-fueled leftie troll perch.

          Oh, and the phrase is “intents and purposes,” not “intensive purposes,” which makes about as much sense as you typically do.

          The above comment can be found here, and I will continue to repost it every time you complain that your comments are not appearing . . . because there’s a reason for this, and it’s the same one that sees many of our real (and beloved) readers occasionally have their comments removed: they violate our comment policy against ad hominem attacks on other readers. Period.

    There is no such thing as “vote of no confidence” in the Constitution. There is only impeachment and removal. Holding a “vote of no confidence” is on the same level as voting to declare next Tuesday to be National Dill Pickle With Whipped Cream Day: a silly, meaningless gesture.

    In an allegedly 50-50 Senate Garland got the votes of McConnell and other Franz von Papen Republican senators because they wanted him to pursue a jihad against Trump supporters.

    Milhouse in reply to Danny. | August 6, 2021 at 11:24 am

    In the USA there is no such thing as a vote of no confidence. That whole concept only exists in countries whose constitutions require the executive to have the legislature’s confidence, or that of one chamber of the legislature, usually the lower one.

    The US constitution separates the executive from the legislature and establishes them as equal and independent, so neither of them needs the other’s confidence.

    That is how it is possible to have a Republican house and a Democrat president, or vice versa. In a country where the executive needs the legislature’s confidence that could not happen.

      Danny in reply to Milhouse. | August 6, 2021 at 8:44 pm

      They voted that Trump was guilty of high crimes and misdemeanors for something much less serious than what Garland is up to.

        Milhouse in reply to Danny. | August 8, 2021 at 1:10 am

        So? What has that got to do with the price of fish? They did not vote that the house has no confidence in Trump, and the reason was because he had no need of the house’s confidence, so it couldn’t vote that he lacked it.

        The whole concept of votes of confidence is based on the principle of Responsible Government, i.e. the executive is responsible to the legislature, or to one chamber thereof. That principle does not exist in the USA.

Joe was partly right when he said “It’s not my Justice Department. It’s the people’s Justice Department.”

Corrected, his statement should be “It’s not my Justice Department. It’s the Obama’s Justice Department.”

barbiegirl ny | August 6, 2021 at 8:58 am

Geeez, and all we asked of the Attourneys General under Trump was to do their damn job. We got screwed with both of them.

The action here by the AG is the equivalent of a brush back pitch. Almost certainly the CT is going to overrule the AG position. If not well ok. New standard will be applied and since the d/progressive are more prone to shooting off their mouths they will also pay a price. Eventually.

Better historical examples would be

Frank Wuterich v. John Murtha
Justin Sharrat v. John Murtha

So why haven’t members of the GOP filed similar suits against Pelosi, Schumer, Waters, Schiff, Nadler, etc. etc. etc.? If these are the games the Dems are going to play – and get away with – then the GOP should be front and center on it, too.

Where are they?

    Milhouse in reply to ss396. | August 6, 2021 at 11:26 am

    Because the suits are frivolous and will be dismissed. Possibly with sanctions. As this one will be, eventually. But Swalwell is unlikely to be hit with sanctions.

      ss396 in reply to Milhouse. | August 6, 2021 at 11:33 am

      From the article:

      By refusing to issue that certification to Brooks, Garland’s DOJ ignored well-settled law for what appears to be partisan political purposes, and left Brooks to fend for himself – and to incur what are sure to be crushing defense costs – in the action.

      The process is the punishment: they are harassing Brooks, distracting him, making him spend his time and his money. Swalwell and his enablers don’t care about losing the suit – the suit isn’t their purpose.

      mailman in reply to Milhouse. | August 6, 2021 at 11:55 am

      You are only partly right. These are only frivolous when filed by conservatives

      But now tge guy who fucked Chinese spies has filed this it will be carried by the Democrat media as proven gospel truth that Trump tried to subvert democracy. And these cunts will do that with a straight fee while laughing at you plebs.

        Milhouse in reply to mailman. | August 6, 2021 at 6:39 pm

        No, they are frivolous no matter who files them. This suit will be dismissed, eventually. It’s completely without merit and there’s no way a court could entertain it. But Swalwell’s unlikely to get hit with sanctions, whereas a Republican just might be.

Comanche Voter | August 6, 2021 at 11:44 am

I’m thinking that it is entirely possible that Ms. Fang Fang Bang Bang sucked all of the brains out of Eric Swalwell. Not that it would be that big a job.

OK, we all know that Garland is corrupt, the FBI and DOJ are corrupt, the judiciary is corrupt and politicized as hell, Congress is corrupt and so is the news media..the question is what, if anything, can be done about it….and please, don’t someone say vote, as that has ben corrupted too, with the blessing of SCOTUS!

    Dathurtz in reply to MarkS. | August 6, 2021 at 1:27 pm

    We can hope enough people wake up and see what is happening. We can try to show people what is happening.

    Otherwise, I don’t know. I don’t think our government can be fixed without a real calamity

      Danny in reply to Dathurtz. | August 6, 2021 at 8:41 pm

      The way MarkS just expertly trolled you is exhibit A for why you should stop claiming things that aren’t corrupt are corrupt.

    Milhouse in reply to MarkS. | August 8, 2021 at 1:12 am

    I don’t believe Garland is corrupt. Political, yes. Without scruples, quite possibly. But I’ve seen no indication of corruption.

Merrick Garland is the biggest moron that almost served on the SCOTUS, at least in recent memory.
He and “his mater” have concocted a Fascist plan of domestic surveillance that would make Mussolini blush.

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