Law

Chicago To Merge With Detroit?

Featured image The Wall Street Journal editorial page this morning explores why Chicago’s debt has been downgraded to “junk” status, reviewing the unsustainable structure of its public school teacher pensions, which are only the one small aspect of Illinois’s public sector pension crisis. But the precipitating event that caused Moody’s to downgrade Chicago’s debt to junk was the decision of the Illinois Supreme Court last week that the state may not alter »

Mosby doubles down on demagoguery

Featured image Yesterday, Marilyn Mosby, the prosecutor who brought charges against six Baltimore police officers accused of mistreating Freddie Gray, sat on stage at a Baltimore concert in which Prince performed a protest song about Gray and the recent unrest in the city. As I understand it, the concert was in honor of Gray, and Prince called Mosby and her husband to the stage. Based on the reports I’ve seen, I would »

Corruption from the IRS to the DoJ

Featured image The pro-Israel group Z Street had its application for tax-exempt status held up at the IRS. When founder Lori Lowenthal Marcus asked why, she was told that IRS auditors had been instructed to give pro-Israel groups special attention and that Z Street’s application had been forwarded to a special IRS unit for additional review. Not to put too fine a point on the legal issues, this isn’t kosher. It’s illegal. »

Freddie Gray’s knife, Part Two

Featured image The prosecutor in the Freddie Gray case contends that it was not unlawful for Gray to be carrying his knife — a “spring-assisted, one-hand-operated” device — and that therefore it was improper to arrest him. I argued here that the prosecutor is likely wrong because Baltimore city law makes it unlawful to “possess any knife with an automatic spring or other device for opening and/or closing the blade. . . »

Freddie Gray’s knife, Marilyn Mosby’s bias

Featured image One of the charges brought by prosecutor Marilyn Mosby in the Freddie Gray case is false arrest. The police arrested Gray for carrying an illegal knife, but Mosby has announced that Gray’s knife was not an illegal switchblade under Maryland law. Defense attorneys contest this claim. They have filed a motion to inspect the knife. Who is right about the knife? Without having seen the knife, I can’t say for »

Mosby so far [With Comment by John]

Featured image Baltimore state’s attorney Marilyn Mosby has charged six Baltimore police officers with serious crimes in connection with the death of Freddie Gray on April 19. The New York Times account of the charges is here. The Washington Post enumerates the charges here and takes a look at Ms. Mosby here. The charges quickly followed both Gray’s death and the rioting of the mob in Baltimore. Ms. Mosby’s announcement of the »

Justice Alito on “The Constitution: An Introduction”

Featured image Michael Stokes Paulsen is the University Chair & Professor of Law at the University of St. Thomas in the Twin Cities. Through his contributions to professional publications, he has emerged as one our foremost scholars of American constitutional law. As of May 5, Professor Paulsen is also the co-author, with his son, Luke Paulsen, of The Constitution: An Introduction. The book’s Web site is online here. United States Supreme Court »

Wisconsin’s shame

Featured image Tom Wolfe mockingly nailed liberal hysteria in the observation that the “dark night of fascism is always descending in the United States and yet lands only in Europe,” but that was back in the halcyon days of Richard Nixon in the 1970′s. David French documents the descent of the dark night of fascism in Wisconsin in his May 4 NR story “Wisconsin’s shame.” Megyn Kelly talked with French about it »

Panel named for initial executive amnesty appeal

Featured image The Fifth Circuit has announced the panel that will hear the Obama administration’s request to lift Judge Hanen’s preliminary injunction of the president’s Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (“DAPA”). The panel consists of Judges Jerry Smith (Reagan appointee), Jennifer Elrod (George W. Bush appointee), and Stephen Higginson (Obama appointee). This is not a good panel for the government. Elrod is a rising star conservative judge. »

Why “big law” won’t defend the constitutionality of bans on gay marriage

Featured image Not long ago, in the context of the controversy over Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act, I complained that corporate America won’t stand up to the increasingly totalitarian tactics of the gay rights movement and its leftist supporters. This is not surprising, I added, because “history teaches that corporations are hardly a bulwark against totalitarianism.” What’s true of corporations is true in spades of their handmaidens, big law firms. I worked »

The case of Patrick Fitzgerald

Featured image After the media firestorm over Joseph Wilson and Valerie Plame, then-Deputy Attorney General James Comey appointed Patrick Fitzgerald to serve as independent counsel. Fitzgerald was to ascertain who had identified Plame to Robert Novak as a CIA agent and whether a crime had been committed in the process. The chain of events having been initiated by Wilson’s New York Times op-ed column, the Times itself served as the ringmaster of »

Judge Hanen sticks with it

Featured image Judge Andrew Hanen has filed a memorandum opinion and order denying the Obama administration’s motion to lift his temporary injunction preventing implementation of Obama’s post-election executive amnesty program. The memorandum opinion and order are posted online here. In media reports of Judge Hanen’s order, you won’t see this comment on the administration’s misrepresentations concerning implementation of the amnesty: The Court finds that the Government’s multiple statements on this subject were »

Nine years later, Tom Cotton’s letter to the Times

Featured image We have written a lot over the years about the repeated violations of the Espionage Act by New York Times reporters James Risen and Eric Lichtblau. They gave me a lot to work with in 2006. I wrote a January 2006 column for the Weekly Standard, for example, that the Standard titled “Exposure.” (I reposted it on Power Line last year under the heading “Is the Times a law unto »

Another note on the Menendez indictment

Featured image I took a brief look at the indictment handed up this week against Senator Robert Menendez and Dr. Salomon Melgen in “Notes on the Menendez indictment.” Andy McCarthy brings an educated prosecutorial eye to a reading of the indictment in “Obama’s Justice Department charges Menendez…but not Reid.” There is a dearth of intelligent commentary on the indictment. Andy’s post stands out in this context, but not just for this reason. »

Notes on the Menendez indictment

Featured image The indictment of New Jersey Senator Robert Menendez and his friend Dr. Salomon Melgen has been posted online here. It runs to 68 pages and provides a wealth of detail. Paul comments on the indictment here. If you’re trying to get a handle on the reality behind the headlines, the indictment requires a close look. The facts alleged in the indictment may to a great extent make out what former »

Menendez indicted, but why?

Featured image Sen. Robert Menendez was indicted today (April 1) on federal corruption charges. He is accused of using the influence of his office to advance the business interests of a longtime friend and political supporter in exchange for luxury gifts, lavish vacations, and more than $750,000 in campaign donations. The indictment is here. The indictment comes on the heels of Menendez’s strong opposition to President Obama’s Iran policy. It also comes »

Did the Virginia State Bar tell its members the truth?

Featured image I wrote here and here about the Virginia State Bar’s decision to cancel a seminar it had scheduled in Jerusalem. The cancellation occurred after a small number of anti-Israeli petitioners objected. VSB president Kevin Martingayle tried to defend the decision in two letters to members. I reprinted the first letter, which announced the cancellation, in my first post and the second letter in my follow-up piece. The second letter, co-written »