Crime

Restraining our way to lawlessness and unrestrained government, Part Two

Featured image Charles Krauthammer suggests that James Comey’s decision not to prosecute Hillary Clinton, like Chief Justice Roberts’ decision to uphold the Obamacare mandate, was driven by an unwillingness to upend or overrule the political processes on a momentous matter. In Roberts’ case the momentous matter was legislation providing free or cut-rate health to millions of Americans. In Comey’s it was a presidential election. I agree with Krauthammer. In both instances, it »

Terrorism in Dallas

Featured image As John discusses below, three to six police officers [update: eleven officers, five of whom were killed] are reported to have been shot in Dallas during a Black Lives Matter protest, or a protest along similar lines. At least some of the officers are said to be gravely wounded. (As always in these situations, such reports should not be taken as definitive.) Reportedly, at least two shooters were involved and »

James Comey’s baffling testimony

Featured image I haven’t seen James Comey’s testimony before Congress this morning. However, Andrew McCarthy reports that Comey said the statute criminalizing gross negligence in mishandling classified information is invalid because it does not require proof of intent to improperly transmit classified information to places it is not supposed to be or to people not authorized to have it. According to McCarthy: The director claims that the statute has only been used »

Explosive Video of Minnesota Police Shooting Gets Worldwide Attention

Featured image Last night, at about 9 p.m. in Falcon Heights, a St. Paul suburb, a police officer stopped a vehicle, reportedly for a tail light violation. Within minutest thereafter, the officer shot the driver of the car multiple times, and the driver, Philando Castile, died. What has gotten worldwide attention is video that was shot and uploaded live to Facebook by Castile’s girlfriend. The video begins when Castile has just been »

Poll: Majority wanted Hillary indicted

Featured image A Rasmussen poll finds that most voters disagree with FBI Director James Comey’s decision not to seek a criminal indictment of Hillary Clinton. The poll, taken the night Comey announced the decision, finds that 37 percent of likely voters agree with the FBI’s decision, but 54 percent disagree and believe the FBI should have sought a criminal indictment. I confess to being surprised by this result. I expected the split »

Here’s a reasonable prosecutor who would charge Hillary Clinton

Featured image There were several embarrassing moments in James Comey’s statement yesterday. For me the most embarrassing was his claim that no reasonable prosecutor would bring a criminal prosecution against Hillary Clinton. As I noted at the time, Comey made this assertion without matching to facts he had laid out with the statutory language. Dana Milbank, the Clown Prince of the Washington Post, takes the farce one step further. He insists that »

Restraining our way to lawlessness and unrestrained government

Featured image James Comey’s recommendation not to prosecute Hillary Clinton, even though most of his statement today tended to show she should be prosecuted, reminds me of Chief Justice Roberts’ decision four years ago to uphold Obamacare’s individual mandate on the theory that it imposed a tax, not a penalty. I believe Roberts reached this decision because he didn’t want unelected judges to strike down the will of the legislature on a »

Comey to address the media this morning [UPDATE: Clinton off the hook]

Featured image Katie Pavlich at Townhall reports that FBI Director James Comey will make a statement today at at 11 a.m. He will also take questions from reporters. A few days ago, the FBI interviewed Hillary Clinton in what, presumably, was one of the final steps in its investigation of the email server scandal. It was reported then that the investigation was winding up. I don’t know that many expected a decision »

FBI interviews Hillary, as investigation seemingly winds down [UPDATED]

Featured image This morning, FBI investigators interviewed Hillary Clinton for three-and-a-half hours. The meeting took place at FBI headquarters in Washington. Presumably, the interview with Clinton signals that the FBI’s investigation is at or near an end. Investigators already have interviewed numerous Clinton aides, including the key ones: Huma Abedin, Cheryl Mills and Bryan Pagliano, the IT technician who set up Hillary’s server. According to CNN, “sources” say the “expectation” is “there »

No jailbreak legislation this year

Featured image The bipartisan jailbreak legislation — known as the Sentencing Reform and Corrections Act — is dead in this session of Congress. Sens. Dick Durbin and John Cornyn, key backers of the Act, have basically conceded defeat. Cornyn said he had hoped the House would move more quickly and provide momentum for the legislation in the Senate. But, he added, “apparently we ran out of time.” In reality, the demise of »

Supreme Court overturns Robert McDonnell’s conviction

Featured image In its final decision of the term, the Supreme Court today unanimously overturned the public corruption conviction of former Virginia governor Robert McDonnell. The court stated that it has no opinion as to whether McDonnell should be retried under the stricter standard (described below) it imposed for these kinds of cases. I have mixed feelings about the outcome, but I agree with the decision. You don’t have to be the »

Our under-incarceration problem, Orlando edition

Featured image Time and time again, in the aftermath of a horrific crime, we learn that the criminal previously had been incarcerated for crimes serious enough that he should have been in prison at the time of the latest offense. I call this our under-incarceration problem. In the case of Omar Mateen, killer of four dozen at an Orlando club, I haven’t seen anything that shows he should have been in jail. »

White House acknowledges that the Clinton probe is “criminal”

Featured image White House press secretary Josh Earnest confirmed today during a press briefing that the FBI’s probe into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server is a “criminal Investigation.” Clinton has steadfastly denied this. The acknowledgement occurred during a colloquy about whether President Obama’s endorsement of Clinton while the FBI is investigating her raises a potential conflict, a matter I discussed here. The exchange went as follows: REPORTER: Previously the »

Obama’s endorsement of Clinton and the DOJ’s investigation of her email practices

Featured image President Obama has officially endorsed Hillary Clinton. No surprise there. The endorsement means that Clinton is now being investigated by a Justice Department whose head (Attorney General Loretta Lynch) serves at the pleasure of a president who backs Clinton’s presidential bid, and who was hand-picked by that president with the understanding that she’s a loyalist. This reality would, and I think should, raise questions as to the impartiality of a »

Dark clouds gather over Hillary Clinton

Featured image Dan Metcalfe teaches secrecy law at American University’s Washington College of Law. He served as Director of the Justice Department’s Office of Information and Privacy for more than 25 years, during which time he handled information-disclosure policy issues on dozens of Clinton Administration scandals. He’s a registered Democrat who says he will vote for Hillary Clinton in November “if she escapes indictment and manages to become the Democratic presidential nominee.” »

Why the “scar tissue” excuse for Hillary’s document destruction fails

Featured image Ruth Marcus of the Washington Post offers a familiar excuse for Hillary Clinton’s insistence on using a private email server. According to Marcus, “the scar tissue built up over years of politically motivated attacks and endless investigations reinforced Clinton’s instinct for the protective crouch.” Marcus’ explanation sounds plausible, but it happens to be false (except for the part about “instinct for the protective crouch”). We know the explanation is false »

Chart of the Week: Productivity and Police Action

Featured image Actually, here are two useful charts. With the first quarter’s economic growth being revised upward from the previous 0.5 percent annual rate to 0.8 percent annual rate, the Obama era continues its record as the weakest economic expansion in history. One reason is shown in this chart from the Financial Times, showing U.S. productivity growth turning negative in the first quarter: You can see that productivity growth has been slow »