Andrew Miller, a witness in the investigation by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, was held in Contempt by Judge Beryl Howell this morning, a result necessary to appeal the action to the U.S. Court of Appeals. Judge Howell stayed the Contempt pending the resolution of our appeal.
Miller is represented by constitutional and appellate attorney Paul Kamenar, representation made possible by NLPC.
Kamenar will file the appeal Monday morning based on our assertion that Mueller was appointed in violation of the Appointments Clause of the Constitution, and that his appointment is invalid because he was not appointed by the Attorney General but by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.
Today’s action paves the way to higher courts, and possibly the Supreme Court. Getting to this stage was not automatic or easy. We received significant media coverage today. We are trying to get the … Read More ➡
Today we filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request seeking documents pertaining to the prosecution of Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) on bribery and related charges, and the Justice Department decision not to retry him. Menendez was tried once but that trial ended in a mistrial on November 16, 2017.
Why did the Justice Department let Menendez escape after pouring so many resources into the investigation, prosecution, and trial? One possible explanation is that political influence was exercised on Menendez’ behalf. Menendez’ lawyer is Abbe Lowell, who also represents Jared Kushner, President Trump’s son-in-law. Kushner and his family are longtime donors to Democratic politicians in New Jersey, including Menendez. Someone made the decision to save Menendez’ career and possibly keep him out of prison. We want to know who made the decision and on what basis.
The Justice Department announcement was made in a terse statement on January 31, citing … Read More ➡
Once upon a time, during a period known as the Eighties and the Nineties, Al Sharpton – preacher, civil rights activist, media personality, inciter of crowds, and celebrant of all things black – routinely answered to words such as “loud,” “flamboyant” and “crazy.” But for the last decade and a half, the man known as Reverend Al goes by words such as “pragmatic,” “respectable,” “sensible” and “powerful.” Times change, and not necessarily for the better. On the issue of immigration amnesty, that’s especially true.
Al Sharpton, a man who has perfected the art of extracting money and other things of value from the pillars of American society, no longer has to kick down doors to get what he wants. The doors have been opened for him. And many of the people admitting him are those who formerly avoided him as radioactive. As my book, Sharpton: A Demagogue’s Rise, describes, … Read More ➡
Hon. Beryl Howell, Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, has denied a Motion to Quash a subpoena to a Grand Jury witness in the Russia collusion probe headed by Special Counsel Robert Mueller. The Motion was made by attorneys for a witness on the basis that Mueller’s appointment was not constitutional under the Appointments Clause. The Motion was argued during a 90-minute hearing on July 18. The names of the witness and the attorneys were redacted in the decision, which was made public today.
Howell’s denial was expected. Attorneys for the witness will appeal the ruling to a higher court.
Today, NLPC filed a Complaint with the Federal Election Commission alleging that Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) violated federal election law in a transaction related to her so-called slate mailer during her last re-election campaign.
The transaction was a payment to Waters’ campaign fund from the Democratic State Central Committee of California (DSCCC) in the amount of $35,000 for the inclusion of then-Senate candidate, and now Senator Kamala Harris, on Waters’ slate mailer. Whereas candidates like Harris may legally pay Waters’ campaign for the proportional costs of their inclusion on her slate mailer, it is not legal for such payment to be made by a third party like the DSCCC.
Waters’ slate mailers have been a matter of controversy for years. They resemble a sample ballot distributed by political parties before and during elections, but contain Waters’ personal endorsements. She pioneered a new way to use slate mailers by seeking an … Read More ➡
Legal scholars Seth Barrett Tillman and Josh Blackman have weighed in on the increasingly relevant question of whether Robert Mueller’s appointment as Special Counsel is constitutional. I made my views known when I told the New York Times, “The founders feared exactly what we see in Mueller: a runaway federal official. We hope to see Mueller’s operation disbanded, once and for all.”
In an article titled “Is Robert Mueller an ‘Officer of the United States’ or an ‘Employee of the United States'”? appearing on the Lawfare website, Tillman and Blackman examine a number of arguments and offer some of their own:
Recent debates over the constitutionality of Robert Mueller’s appointment as special counsel turn on whether he is a principal or inferior “officer of the United States.” Steven Calabresi contends that Mueller is in fact a principal officer, who, as a result, must be nominated by the president, and … Read More ➡
What did Jim Jordan know and when did he know it? Lots of people are asking this question about the six-term Ohio Republican congressman’s connection, if any, to a scandal that occurred long ago and far outside the confines of Congress. Some are seeking answers. On July 9, Norm Eisen and Fred Wertheimer, respectively, ethics czar for the Obama administration and president of the nonprofit Democracy 21, filed a request with the Office of Congressional Ethics to conduct a probe into whether Jordan, while as an assistant coach for the Ohio State University wrestling team during 1987-95, willfully ignored evidence of sexual misconduct. The request was prompted by recent statements by certain ex-wrestlers. Yet the accusations may be politically motivated, especially given that Jordan may become the next House Speaker.
The president, who might not be fully acquainted with the pertinent Supreme Court case law, says the appointment of Robert S. Mueller III as special counsel was unconstitutional. The president’s opinion, because it is his, is prima facie evidence for the opposite conclusion. It is, however, not sufficient evidence. Consider the debate between two serious people who have immersed themselves in the history of the appointments clause, which says:
“[The president] shall nominate, and by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, shall appoint ambassadors, other public ministers and consuls, judges of the Supreme Court, and all other officers of the United States, whose appointments are not herein otherwise provided for, and which shall be established by law: but the Congress may by law vest the … Read More ➡
Few things are more dangerous than a bad idea on a roll. And there is no better current example than the bandwagon of public opinion demanding that Congress abolish U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). This view, until recently limited to the radical fringes, suddenly has gone mainstream. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., and other lawmakers have announced their desire to open our borders and block deportations. Two House members are preparing a bill to abolish ICE. Like the street activists pressuring them, these people believe that controlling immigration is wrong. America, they insist, is a global sanctuary, not a sovereign nation. That’s why they see President Trump, who governs as if America were a nation, as embodying evil.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement, part of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, is the agency guarding our borders and removing people who lack authorization to be here. Established … Read More ➡