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Hanen to Taitz: Show me case law

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. I greatly appreciate it when local newspapers cover local birther events. This time it is the Brownsville Valley Morning Star’s coverage of the Taitz v. Johnson hearing yesterday by reporter Emma Perez-Treveño.

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The reporter’s posts on Facebook yesterday provided some information on how the hearing progressed. The longer version (paid) of the article provides a little more information including the following (via The Fogbow):

Regarding her request for a travel ban, Hanen said that everyone needs to keep in mind what is within the province of the court, and what is within the province of the United States Congress and the Executive Branch. Noting that while he might or not agree with a ban, she might have to show him where he would have authority to issue one, and referred to the well-known saying that, “judges are appointed, but they are not anointed.”

“If you want to go there, you are going to have to show me,” Hanen told Taitz. Taitz told Hanen that he has the right to issue a writ of mandamus to force Burwell to issue an order of quarantine. But Hanen pointed out that the law authorizes, but does not mandate that Burwell issue such orders.

“Why are we here if you find there is nothing you can do?” Taitz asked Hanen amid his observations. “We are here because you filed a lawsuit,” Hanen told her. “I’ll let you question the witness Dr. Taitz, not me,” he added.

Taitz told Hanen that he was refusing to consider the threat of injury to her. “Show me case law,” Hanen told her. “Does the case law provide that? What is the likelihood that it can happen? There is no certainty with Ebola or that you would be affected by it,” he continued. It was noted that the threat must be actual or imminent, not conjecture or hypothetical. “You’re going to have to show me that it’s not hypothetical,” Hanen told her.

Taitz herself did not testify at the hearing, but her “expert witness” Vera Dolan did. The government stated that “a cough is a symptom, not a diagnosis” and Taitz doesn’t know what caused it, and even if she did catch a respiratory infection from one of the immigrant children, that child could have caught it in the United States.

Taitz should go to law school and learn about this stuff.

I personally think that Judge Hanen is out of line holding this hearing at all, until after the question of standing has been settled. Without standing, he has no jurisdiction. But then, I haven’t gone to law school.

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Stockman may not matter

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Rep. Steve Stockman was the great birther hope for a Congressional investigation into Obama’s birth documents with the Zullo crowd saying he was “on board” despite official silence. Stockman was on the impeachment wagon, authoring a book: “Impeach­able Offenses: The Case for Removing Barack Obama from Office.” One might think that a very con­ser­va­tive politician was tailor made for advancement in the very con­ser­va­tive state of Texas, but Stockman is not faring very well in a primary battle for the US Senate, as indicated by these University of Texas / Texas Tribune numbers:

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It’s a bit of a mystery where Steve Stockman is, the usually punctual Stockman missing 17 straight votes in the House this year, and disappearing for two weeks from the Senate campaign. He was briefly spotted in Egypt reports Politico, but nothing since. This hasn’t helped his popularity among potential voters.

Stockman combined his two passions, guns and anti-abortion, in the memorable Tweet:

If babies had guns, they wouldn’t be aborted.

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The return of the birther bills

A number of states saw attempts in their legislatures to pass some sort of legislation aimed at providing stricter controls over who could run for President of the United States. The Arizona legislature actually passed a bill, but it was vetoed by Governor Brewer.

Many said that those so-called “birther bills” were thinly veiled attacks on Barack Obama, who the birthers have long believed was not born in the USA and hence not eligible to be President. Now that the President is duly installed in the White House for a second term, and constitutionally precluded from ever running for President again, that criticism is harder to make stick, except…

Now, in the post-Obama-election climate, Texas leads the way for perhaps a new string of birther-inspired legislation aimed at ensuring that Presidential candidates have unassailable paperwork. The Texas bill  is sponsored by Arlington State Representative Bill Zedler, who says his bill has “nothing to do with Obama.”

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Birther Déjà vu in secessionist movement

“It’s déjà vu all over again.”

The Huffington Post/YouGov poll on US secession sentiment came out today. Secessionists are in the minority, but the numbers are literally crazy. There are secession polls in all 50 states, and of those polled by YouGov:

Over half opposed seeing their state secede, with 42 percent strongly opposing the idea, while 22 percent said they supported the idea. A quarter weren’t sure.

Those sound a lot like birther numbers to me. In a rather counterfactual opinion, 20% said that it was very likely that a majority in their state would vote to secede. I am on the YouGov panel, but I wasn’t one of the 1,000 adults queried on this question.

Not surprisingly, it’s largely the Republicans who want to leave the Union, twice as many males as females, and highest among those 65 years of age or older.

There was a slight bias against Texas in the poll. Nationwide 22.8% supported secession for their state, 29% said that states should have the right to secede, but 31.6% said that Texas should be allowed to go.

So what happens if all 50 states secede? I guess the Taliban takes over.

“YouTubes are infallible”

Texas Representative Leo Berman is I suppose that unwanted uncle of the birther movement, allowing himself to be skewered regularly by the news media. I was not prepared, however, to see him say one of the most remarkably stupid things yet: “The YouTubes are infallible.”

That statement makes a fitting conclusion to the video report by Thanh Tan of the Texas Tribune that appears below. I can’t be to harsh, though; I might be old and senile myself one day.

Obama Opponents Set to Unleash Hell

blackopsIn an article by James Vega from The Democratic Strategist Blog we find suggestions that “multi-million dollar independent conservative propaganda organizations like Freedom Watch are supporting the birther movement and intend to leverage it.”

The new “Black Ops’ attacks” will be of three basic kinds:

First, they will organize and subsidize phony grass roots movements and protests. The most dramatic recent example of this is CNBC newscaster Rick Santelli’s “tea party” diatribe… Continue Reading →