Connect with us

News

Trump Judge’s Controversial Injunction Against Biden Hands Disney ‘Open and Shut’ Case Against DeSantis: Legal Expert

Published

on

A highly-controversial injunction against the Biden administration from a Trump-appointed federal judge could mean Disney’s First Amendment lawsuit against Florida GOP governor and presidential candidate Ron DeSantis is a “solid” and “open and shut” case, according to a top law professor and civil rights attorney.

On July 4, the Chief U.S. District Judge for the Western District of Louisiana, Terry Doughty, blocked the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, among other federal entities, from working with social media companies to combat posts on a wide range of topics, from child pornography to election, COVID, and vaccine misinformation.

The Washington Post reports the injunction bars “key Biden administration agencies and officials from meeting and communicating with social media companies about ‘protected speech,’ in an extraordinary preliminary injunction in an ongoing case that could have profound effects on the First Amendment.” It comes in response to a lawsuit from Republican attorneys general in Louisiana and Missouri.

“The Donald Trump-appointed judge’s move could undo years of efforts to enhance coordination between the government and social media companies. For more than a decade, the federal government has attempted to work with social media companies to address criminal activity, including child sexual abuse images and terrorism,” the Post reports.

READ MORE: Trump Unleashes Another Call for Americans to Come Out and ‘Protest’

“The injunction is strikingly broad and clearly intended to chill any kind of contact between government actors and social media platforms,” Evelyn Douek, an assistant professor at Stanford Law School, told the Post.

In December of 2021, as deaths from COVID-19 hit 800,000 in the U.S., ahead of an expected post-holiday spike, Judge Doughty blocked President Biden’s mandate requiring healthcare workers be vaccinated against the deadly disease. To do so, the judge cited “the claims of a doctor who falsely said that the Covid-19 vaccine was not effective in preventing transmission of the disease,” as CNN reported.

Last year, Judge Doughty blocked President Biden’s vaccine mandate requiring COVID-19 vaccinations for workers at Head Start programs, which help children 3-5 years of age, and their families. Studies show a majority of families that contracted COVID did so via children. One study, published by the University of Minnesota, “suggests that 70.4% of nearly 850,000 US household COVID-19 transmissions originated with a child.” It also found younger children “more likely to spread” the virus.

Judge Doughty’s injunction blocking the Biden administration from communicating with social media companies is being widely criticized.

“It engages in dangerous censorship in the name of fighting censorship. It must be challenged in the name of the First Amendment. No competent lawyer could defend it. And the states that won this relief lack Article III standing anyway!” writes University Professor Emeritus at Harvard University, Laurence Tribe, the noted constitutional scholar.

“Censoring a broad swath of vital communications between government and social media platforms in the name of combating censorship makes a mockery of the first amendment,” he adds, and calls it “blatantly unconstitutional.”

Former FBI Counterintelligence Deputy Assistant Director Pete Strzok calls Judge Doughty’s injunction “an ourobouros of conspiracy clusterfuckery,” with “the judge adding himself – and his office – to the narrative.”

READ MORE: ‘Crisis’: Expert Calls SCOTUS ‘Illegitimate’ and Warns Its ‘Judicial Terrorists’ Are a ‘Threat to Democracy’

“The transcripts of the government deponents in the case,” he adds, “feature a walking QAnon DeepState conspiracy-fest by some of the plaintiff’s attorneys.”

Meanwhile, civil rights attorney Sherrilyn Ifill, the former President and Director-Counsel of NAACP Legal Defense Fund (LDF), a Senior Fellow at the Ford Foundation, and a professor of law at Howard University, sees one bright spot in. The injunction could be a boon for The Walt Disney Company.

Disney is suing DeSantis, alleging the company’s First Amendment free speech rights were violated as the Florida governor repeatedly attacked and retaliated against the entertainment giant, ultimately rescinding its 50-year old “independent special district” tax and governing status after the company quietly opposed and then spoke out against his extreme “Don’t Say Gay” law.

“The evidence cited by the judge doesn’t add up to govt [government] censorship,” Ifill writes on Twitter, about the social media injunction.

“I hope that Disney is reading the decision carefully,” she adds. “Cause by this analysis they have a solid First Amend[ment] claim against Ron DeSantis. Open & shut.”

 

 

Continue Reading
Click to comment
 
 

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. The New Civil Rights Movement depends on readers like you to meet our ongoing expenses and continue producing quality progressive journalism. Three Silicon Valley giants consume 70 percent of all online advertising dollars, so we need your help to continue doing what we do.

NCRM is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. From unflinching coverage of religious extremism, to spotlighting efforts to roll back our rights, NCRM continues to speak truth to power. America needs independent voices like NCRM to be sure no one is forgotten.

Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure NCRM remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to NCRM, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.

News

‘I’m Not Suicidal’: Kari Lake Pushes Hillary Clinton Murder Conspiracy Theory

Published

on

Republican U.S. Senate candidate Kari Lake is promoting a conspiracy theory suggesting Hillary Clinton wants to assassinate her. Her remarks came just one day before she lost her attempt to have the Supreme Court review what some have called her conspiracy-theory fueled lawsuit about electronic voting machines.

“Lake, who filed the lawsuit during her failed campaign for governor in 2022, challenged whether the state’s electronic voting machines assured ‘a fair and accurate vote.’ Two lower courts dismissed the suit, finding that Lake and former Republican state lawmaker Mark Finchem had not been harmed in a way that allowed them to sue,” CNN reported Monday.

Also on Monday Law&Crime reported that when she filed her lawsuit, a Dominion Voting Systems spokesperson “rejected Lake’s cybersecurity claim, telling Law&Crime it was ‘implausible and conspiratorial.'”

Democracy Docket, founded by top Democratic elections attorney Marc Elias, called it “the end of the road for a conspiratorial lawsuit,” and Lake and Fincham, “election deniers.”

READ MORE: ‘Old and Tired and Mad’: Trump’s Demeanor in Court Detailed by Rachel Maddow

Lake, a far-right conspiracy theorist who has yet to concede the 2020 election, which she lost to Democrat Katie Hobbs, has a history of pushing exaggerated and baseless claims.

On Sunday, as MeidasTouch Network reported, Lake promoted an old, anti-Clinton conspiracy theory but twisted it to try to make it appear she was in danger from former U.S. Secretary of State and former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton.

Lake on Newsmax listened to a clip of Secretary Clinton calling Trump’s fondness for Russian President Vladimir Putin a “bromance,” and saying the ex-president is “just gaga over Putin, because Putin does what he would like to do: kill his opposition, imprison his opposition, drive, you know, journalists and others into exile, rule without any check or balance.”

Then Lake promoted a thoroughly debunked conspiracy theory by responding, “Oh, boy. Oh, that’s really rich coming from a woman like Hillary Clinton, who’s, how many of her friends have just like, mysteriously died or committed suicide?”

“I mean, honestly, that’s rich of her. What President Trump wants is to root out the corruption and deliver our government back to We The People and she looks very nervous. She talked about her friend Mark Elias, Mark Elias has meddled in in his and his cohorts have meddled in the elections.”

She called Democratic policies, “destructive, deadly and frankly, in some ways, diabolical,”and added, “it’s almost comical that Hillary Clinton is talking about Trump wanting to kill his opponents.”

READ MORE: ‘Election Interference’ and ‘Corruption’: Experts Explain Trump Prosecution Opening Argument

“I just want to say as I’m as I’m speaking about this topic, I want everyone out there to know that my brakes on my car have recently been checked and they work. I’m not suicidal. And Hillary, I don’t mean any harm to you. Please don’t send your henchmen out to me. We understand what you’re about. ”

Watch below or at this link.

READ MORE: ‘Rally Behind MAGA’: Trump Advocates Courthouse ‘Protests’ Nationwide

 

Continue Reading

News

‘Old and Tired and Mad’: Trump’s Demeanor in Court Detailed by Rachel Maddow

Published

on

MSNBC top host Rachel Maddow, inside Manhattan’s Criminal Courthouse on Monday declared Donald Trump appeared “old and tired and mad,” as she delivered observations about the ex-president on trial for 34 counts of falsification of business records alleged in the alleged pursuit of election interference to protect his 2016 presidential run.

Trump “seems considerably older, and he seems annoyed. Resigned, maybe, angry. he seems like a man who’s miserable to be here,” the award-winning journalist told MSNBC viewers Monday afternoon.

“I’m no body language expert,” she conceded, “and this is just my observation. He seemed old and tired and mad.”

The New York Times’ Susanne Craig, from inside the courthouse Monday morning reported: “Trump is struggling to stay awake. His eyes were closed for a short period. He was jolted awake when Todd Blanche, his lawyer, nudged him while sliding a note in front of him.”

The Biden campaign was only too happy to pick up and report Craig’s observation, adding “feeble.”

Former Obama senior advisor David Axelrod, pointing to his piece at The Atlantic, wrote of Trump: “He has charmed & conned, schemed & marauded his way through life. He was bred that way. But the weariness & vulnerability captured in courtroom images betray a growing sense in Trump that he could wind up as the thing his old man most reviled:
A loser.”

Watch Maddow’s remarks below or at this link.

READ MORE: ‘Election Interference’ and ‘Corruption’: Experts Explain Trump Prosecution Opening Argument

Continue Reading

News

‘Election Interference’ and ‘Corruption’: Experts Explain Trump Prosecution Opening Argument

Published

on

Prosecutors for the State of New York in their opening statement drew a direct line between the October 2016  “Access Hollywood” leaked audio and Donald Trump’s alleged “hush money” payoff to two women, including the adult film actress Stormy Daniels, telling the jury it was “election fraud, pure and simple.”

Legal experts are dissecting the prosecution’s opening argument. Professor of law, MSNBC contributor and former FBI General Counsel Andrew Weissmann summed it up, saying New York District Attorney Alvin Bragg “squarely places the NY criminal trial in the election interference/corruption bucket– exactly what the DC and GA indictments allege, just 4 years later.”

“And the NY alleged ‘cover up’ is reminiscent of the two MAL [Mar-a-Lago] alleged obstruction schemes post-presidency, to keep prosecutors from uncovering evidence of that scheme,” Weissmann added.

Prosecutor Matthew Colangelo late Monday morning in his 45-minute opening argument told jurors, “This case is about criminal conspiracy and a cover up,” according to MSNBC’s Joyce Vance.

READ MORE: ‘Rally Behind MAGA’: Trump Advocates Courthouse ‘Protests’ Nationwide

“The defendant, Donald Trump, orchestrated a criminal scheme to corrupt the 2016 presidential election,” Colangelo told jurors, CNN reports. “Then he covered up that criminal conspiracy by lying in his New York business records over and over and over again.”

“This was a planned, coordinated long-running conspiracy to influence the 2016 election, to help Donald Trump get elected through illegal expenditures,” Colangelo, a former U.S. Department of Justice Acting Associate Attorney General, told jurors.

“Another story about sexual infidelity, especially with a porn star, on the heels of the Access Hollywood tape would have been devastating to his campaign,” Colangelo added. “’So at Trump’s direction, Cohen negotiated the deal to buy Daniels’ story,’ and prevent it from becoming public before the election.”

“It was election fraud, pure and simple.”

Vance, an MSNBC legal analyst, professor of law and former U.S. Attorney, explains: “The scheme the prosecution is outlining is catch & kill to elect Trump-awful but lawful. Trump crossed the line into illegality when he created false business records to conceal his payments to Cohen to cover up the payments to Stormy Daniels.”

READ MORE: Fox News Host Suggests Trump ‘Force’ Court to Throw Him in Jail – by Quoting Him

“It’s always the cover up,” she adds.

Professor of law and former Deputy Assistant Attorney General Harry Litman adds, the prosecution told jurors “a straight election-interference story.”

Colangelo, Litman says, told jurors that Trump’s then personal attorney Micheal Cohen “then discussed the [Stormy] situation with Trump who was adamant he did not want the story to come out. Another story…on the heels of the Access Hollywood tape would have been devastating to his campaign.”

MSNBC legal contributor Katie Phang describes Colangelo’s opening argument, saying he is “working methodically and chronologically through the conspiracy, identifying the main characters and their involvement. He speaks clearly and succintly [sic].”

Trump has been criminally indicted in four separate cases and is facing a total of 88 felony charges, including 34 in his New York criminal trial for alleged falsification of business records to hide payments of hush money to an adult film actress and one other woman, in an alleged effort to suppress their stories and protect his 2016 presidential campaign, which could be deemed election interference.

Watch an MSNBC clip below or at this link.

 

READ MORE: Gaetz: ‘Corrupt’ Republicans Could ‘Take a Bribe’ and Throw House to Dems, Blocking Trump Run

Continue Reading

Trending

Copyright © 2020 AlterNet Media.