Fri. 10/30: Note to self… Trump is NOT in charge of this election.

Quote: For those of us only remember part of the first line of Roosevelt’s inauguration speech of 1933 (our hand is up!), it’s worth reading the whole thing, which sounds like it could have been written yesterday.

#1 – Let’s take a breath here…

Our email and media feeds are flooded with potential election stealing and violence at the polls. Not only may these visions be overblown, but they may, in fact, be turning fear into a weapon against us, intimidating us from voting this criminal administration out of office.

Today, we were given permission from writer/observer R. Hubbell, to reprint his Oct. 28th article, to remind us the safeguards even a tyrant like Trump can’t touch. (You can subscribe to his great newsletter here.)

It is a sad reality that our president is not elected directly by the citizens of the United States. For good or ill, the Framers of the Constitution created a body that we now refer to as the “Electoral College.” The Electoral College elects the president and vice president, in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution and enabling legislation. The Constitution and statutes provide that states may count votes from November 4th through December 8, 2020, with the latter date serving as the deadline for states to certify the selection of their Electors to the National Archivist. Six days later (December 14), the Electors meet in their respective states to cast their ballots in accordance with their state’s election results. For a general description of the timeline, see Congressional Research Service, “The Electoral College: A 2020 Presidential Election Timeline.” The election of the president becomes official on January 6, 2021 when Congress counts the votes cast by the Electors in their respective state meetings.

Continue reading “Fri. 10/30: Note to self… Trump is NOT in charge of this election.”

Thurs 9/10: We – the American people, refuse to pay for Trump’s rape defamation case!

Action: Call your legislators! This is a gross, illegal and unethical use of our money!

Minimal script: I’m calling from [zip code] and I want Sen./Rep. [___] to know that Trump calling a woman he may have raped a liar to the national press, is not part of his “official capacity as President of the United States.” We, the American taxpayers, believe he should set an example by taking responsibility for his actions and by complying with the original court’s orders. We refuse to pay for both his defense for his tawdry and bullying behavior and if he is found guilty, we refuse to have our tax dollars used to pay any judgements against him.

Contacts – Program these into your phone!: 

  • Rep. Julia Brownley: email(CA-26): DC (202) 225-5811, Oxnard (805) 379-1779, T.O. (805) 379-1779 
  • or Rep. Salud Carbajal: email.(CA-24): DC (202) 225-3601, SB (805) 730-1710 SLO (805) 546-8348 
  • Senator Feinstein: email, DC (202) 224-3841, LA (310) 914-7300, SF (415) 393-0707, SD (619) 231-9712, Fresno (559) 485-7430 
  • and Senator Harris: email,DC (202) 224-3553, LA (310) 231-4494, SAC (916) 448-2787, Fresno (559) 497-5109, SF (415) 981-9369, SD (619) 239-3884 
  • Who is my representative/senator?:

Deeper dive

Trump may have been a federal employee at the time he made the scurilous comment against Ms. Carrol, but we don’t agree that insulting or threatening private American citizens, (especially those holding DNA evidence against him), comprises part of his official duties.

We also don’t agree with opening up a HUGE NEW OPPORTUNITY for our garrilous grifter-in-chief. Trump is probably, right now, trying to figure out how to insert references in press interviews to any and all his many current legal issues, as a way to bring them under Barr’s control and to transfer defense costs to our wallet.

What recently happened to the case against Trump.

E. Jean Carroll, has already “paid” for not remaining silent. She lost her longtime job as an Elle magazine writer after accusing Trump of raping her at Bergdorf Goodman, a luxury New York City department store, in the mid-1990s. She then accused Trump of defamation in 2019, after he stated in a press interview that the incident never occurred as “She’s not my type.”  (his type here.) A New York state court had rejected Trump’s claim of immunity from the private lawsuit. Trump was soon going to be required to produce documents, provide a DNA sample, and sit for a deposition,” Carroll’s lawyer, Roberta Kaplan, said in a statement.

However, in a last minute action, Barr’s DOJ filed a brief in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, asking the court to substitute the “United States” for Trump as the defendant in the lawsuit and to move the case from state to federal court. He argued that Trump’s derogatory remarks were made in the performance of his official duties as president under the Westfall Act of 1988, which protects government employees “even in cases where a claim involves them being asked questions by the press that “relate to their personal activity.” Therefore, according to Barr, not only should government attorneys take over Trump’s defense, but American taxpayers should now assume all expenses, including any judgements made for Carroll. 

Joseph Tacopina, a New York defense attorney who is not involved in the case stated “The DOJ was not meant to serve as the president’s personal in-house counsel, particularly on the taxpayer’s dime.”Trump calling an alleged victim of rape … a liar is not an act in his official capacity. Although ad hominem attacks on members of the regular public may be a regular occurrence in the Oval Office these days, Article II of the Constitution does not include within the functions of the presidency the role of Chief Mudslinger.”

However, Carroll’s chances of winning anything, even with a positive DNA test, would be unlikely in this new scenario. Federal officials are generally immune from charges of defamation. If the DOJ’s filing is successful, it would effectively bring her case to an end. Barr refers to Carroll’s possible loss of rights as a private citizen to sue an alleged repeat offender who publicly lied to humiliate her on a national stage as a “little tempest that is going on [the controversy over the action] …largely because of the bizarre political environment in which we live.”

Here are two statutes Barr is using to defend Trump:

  • The Federal Tort Claims Act of 1946 allows for lawsuits to be filed against the United States in federal court for actions taken by its employees.
  • The Westfall Actaccords federal employees absolute immunity from tort claims arising out of acts undertaken in the course of their official duties, 28 U. S. C. §2679(b)(1), and empowers the Attorney General to certify that a federal employee sued for wrongful or negligent conduct “was acting within the scope of his office or employment at the time of the incident out of which the claim arose.” §2679(d)(1), (2). “

Wednesday 3/21 – Russia Watch – Omnibus spending bill and the Mueller Investigation.

McCain1Link here.

Action #1 – #ProtectOurVote #PaperBallots

(from Loyal Opposition) Yesterday, we posted a call to action AGAINST many of the toxic riders the GOP has attached to  the Omnibus Spending Bill.

Today, we’re asking you to ask your legislators to attach something good. Like protecting our own elections against Russian interference.

House Democrats issued a comprehensive review of state voter system vulnerabilities and want $400 million in the Omnibus Appropriations bill which could be voted on as early as next week to help states convert to paper ballots and harden their systems against cyber-attacks.

The evidence behind their request is irrefutable. Russia hacked into state voter systems in the 2016 election, successfully penetrating several of the systems in the 21 states they attempted to hack.

The heads of U.S. intelligence agencies unanimously testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee that Russia is determined to interfere with our mid-term elections and could cause havoc by tampering with state voter systems.

Our state election systems desperately need to be upgraded: one in four U.S. voters vote on a system with no paper trail, and many others vote on systems that give the voter a receipt, but leave no paper trail that would allow the state to audit the accuracy of the vote count.

Most states have been attempting to harden their systems against cyber-attacks, but many lack the funds and expertise to get it done before the 2018 elections.

Action: Call your House Representative and urge him or her to provide money in the Omnibus Appropriations bill to help states convert to paper ballots that provide an audit trail and harden cyber security defenses. Continue reading “Wednesday 3/21 – Russia Watch – Omnibus spending bill and the Mueller Investigation.”

Monday 3/19 – “On your mark…get set…”

If Trump fires Mueller, local event link here. Don’t live here? Find your closest action with this link here.

From our increasingly rattled president, probably directly from his bathroom.

trump collusion

From a retired four-star Army general who received three Purple Heart medals for injuries sustained during his service in Vietnam, two Silver Stars for valor, and two Distinguished Service Crosses.

Barry McCaffrey

(From MoveOn)
Donald Trump is publicly considering firing Special Counsel Robert Mueller
the person leading the Department of Justice investigation of possible criminal actions by Donald Trump and members of his presidential campaign, as well as the efforts to conceal those activities. Continue reading “Monday 3/19 – “On your mark…get set…””

Wednesday 1/31 – #TrumpWatergate

Trending #TrumpWatergate, #TrumpRussia, #watergate,  #trumpgate

The following is an excerpt from a great article on the strategy to stop the Mueller investigation. This backroom war demonstrates how badly Trump needs this investigation stopped and how desperately we need to know if our leader is a criminal or not..

“If I Can’t Fire Mueller, Who Can I Fire?

In June, 2017, Trump directed White House Counsel Don McGahn to fire Mueller, though McGahn refused and threatened to resign if Trump demanded it. It appears that the threat of major public backlash has since deterred Trump from firing Mueller (Trump has now repeatedly said he is not going to fire him).

Instead, a plan appears to have been in the works to achieve similar ends (crippling the Mueller investigation), but in a way that sidesteps the public backlash of a Mueller firing.

The Washington Post reported on January 27, 2018 that Trump wants to fire Rosenstein.  This would allow Trump to install a new Deputy AG who he believes would be willing to hamper Mueller’s investigation using oversight power, by blocking investigatory and prosecutorial steps that Mueller wants to take.

This type of investigatory hindrance could occur without the public or Congress knowing that Mueller’s actions are being blocked. Rosenstein’s replacement would not have to tell Congress about any blocking of Mueller’s proposed actions until after the investigation is complete; this is when the regulations would require Rosenstein’s replacement to report any curtailed actions to the Chairmen & Ranking Members of the Senate & House Judiciary Committees.

OK, I’ll Fire and Replace Rosenstein. But on What Grounds? Continue reading “Wednesday 1/31 – #TrumpWatergate”