In a brief decision yesterday (14-Nov-2013), US District Judge James L. Robart dismissed the action styled In re: Douglas Vogt. Judge Robart said:
In his response, Mr. Vogt fails to provide a valid basis for this court’s exercise of subject matter jurisdiction over his action.
Mr. Vogt fails to address any of the case authority cited by the court in its order to show cause indicating that (1) there is no private right of action under either 18 U.S.C. § 4 or 18 U.S.C. § 2382, (2) private parties generally lack standing to institute a federal criminal prosecution, and (3) private citizens or voters, such as Mr. Vogt, lack standing to challenge President Obama’s qualifications to hold office through the use of misprision of felony or misprision of treason statutes, or otherwise, because they have suffered no particularized injury . (See generally OSC.) The court, therefore, concludes, consistent with the authorities cited in its prior order to show cause, that it lacks subject matter jurisdiction over Mr. Vogt’s action and DISMISSES this action in its entirety without prejudice.
Dismissal without prejudice gives Vogt leave to re-file the action under some different legal theory.
What the court said was that Mr. Vogt was not individually harmed in any particular way by the things he alleged, not harmed any more than anyone else. This is why he doesn’t have individual standing to sue (even if there were a statute that he could sue under). When the public as a whole believes it is harmed, it is represented by the US Attorney, can petition Congress, and has the vote to change the government. The public could even amend the Constitution to create a new branch of the judiciary just to resolve arguments on the Internet.
What birthers fail to grasp is that consistency is a fundamental principle of our legal system. The courts apply the law uniformly across the country, and according to established precedent. One should never be "surprised" when they go to court. Judge Robart carefully explained to Vogt what the law was, and cited the precedents upon which he would base his decision. If Vogt went to another judge, or to a court of appeals, he will get the same result. (One would think that after 200+ losses in court, birthers would understand this.) It is not because Judge Robart is afraid, or that he is corrupt. He is simply applying the law to Vogt’s consistently and in the same way that any other federal judge would apply it to anyone else. If you order a Big Mac, you’re going to get two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles and onions on a sesame seed bun, and you can go to every McDonald’s restaurant in the country and it’s not going to change. Same with the federal courts.
My feeling is that Vogt isn’t going to file an appeal. First, Vogt claims that he didn’t file a lawsuit in the first place, so it would be rather odd to appeal something that wasn’t even a lawsuit. Second, Vogt is trying to get a judge to empanel a grand jury and that’s the judge’s personal decision about which an appeals court would have no say. If Vogt were to re-file as a real lawsuit, he would have to sue the judge to compel him empanel the grand jury, and we’ve already seen from the Judge’s Order to Show Cause that there is no legal authority for Vogt to compel a grand jury investigation.
What Vogt will probably do, and he has said as much on his web site, is to start mailing his papers to all 600+ plus federal judges asking/demanding that they convene a grand jury, but not filing something with the court.