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.
But but but… VOGT CANT LOSE!!
Please to be showing the sealed avidevit now. I need a good laugh.
I think the Angel Moroni has already carried it up to heaven.
Haha, expected but never the less great news 🙂
Your move, Mr. Vogt.
Ohhhh the humanity!!!!! The judge is part of the conspiracy!!!! I can just hear the meltdown at ORYR.
ah, but wait! getting it dismissed was only the first part of the plan. now it goes up the appellate ladder, leading inexorably to the supreme court, who will have no choice but to make a ruling against obama — or be called nasty names on the intertubes.
Too bad that the court raised clear precedents and Vogt failed to address them, so any appeal’s court is going to refuse to hear the case or approve of its findings. This case is legally speaking dead in the water.
It was a nice attempt to circumvent case law and the judge was not fooled. Perhaps they can find another judge. Of course, with every failure the courts will have an easier time rejecting a new filing.
Vogt and Sibley hoped but lacked the foundation for a legal case. Can’t blame them for trying as they have really nothing to show for themselves…
The difference is that the judge practiced real law, followed the rules, and had real reasons and law behind him for doing what he did. Vogt/Sibley made it up out of whole cloth, tried to do an end run around the rules on an otherwise dead issue, and figured no one would notice, and they were wrong yet again.
At this point, a whole lotta wah goin on, on the Vogt/Sibley front, figure they’ll probably try again, with their non-suit, and fail yet again miserably.
WWHHAATT!!! Is there not one honest judge in this Obamanation?!?
HMMMMMMM….just read the order. It’s an obvious example of judicial activism.
I updated the story to say why I think the case will not be appealed.
I may have been the one to break this story (I got it directly from the Court) and I didn’t see it mentioned at BR or at The Fogbow. (I don’t get to break many.) This morning, BR had an article up.
I don’t think Vogt will file again. At $400 a pop judge shopping would get expensive very quickly. He might resort to mailing it to a bunch of judges all of whom will toss it in the circular file.
There is also a risk of refiling and finding a Judge Clay Land sort of judge who reads it on a bad day and decides to make Vogt pull out his wallet for some serious bucks for stinking up his court with this nonsense.
gee on December 9, 2003, Robart was nominated by President George W. Bush and was confirmed by the United States Senate on June 17, 2004, and received his commission on June 21, 2004.
nope, not one “honest judge” in obamaland – wasn’t the senate republican in 2004?
The United States Senate election, 2004 was an election for one-third of the seats in the United States Senate which coincided with the re-election of George W. Bush as president and the United States House election
I have updated this article with some commentary.
I re-read Vogt’s finding and he is missing some important points.
1. Under Fed Rules Crim Proc 6, the court must convene a Grand Jury if public interest requires but this discusses convening a grand jury, not bringing any specific cases in front of the grand jury.
2. The court is in no position to rule on the Misprision issue as it is not a controversy just a speculative issue that is beyond the court’s control, nor is there evidence that Vogt has actively tried to conceal his knowledge, even though he filed under seal, he seems to have shared much of his findings with the ‘law enforcement’ already, assuming we can consider Zullo’s knitting club to be such 😉
3. The court is not obliged to forward any knowledge of a felony brought to him to a special grand jury. If Vogt wants to force the attorney general/district attorney to do this, he needs a writ of mandamus which he is very unlikely to get.
So he is somewhat stuck here. No right to have the court declare him ‘innocent’ of misprision or something similar, no way to force the court to bring the information in front of a grand jury, and the only way to force the AG is to file a mandamus, which he obviously wants to avoid, because he would run into the standing issue head on.
It was a hail mary pass from the start and the court was quick to cite the relevant cases, which our friend Vogt somehow failed to rebut.
That would be hilarious… He may already have overlooked one aspect…
Maybe he should send them as a blue letter. That means you put them right in the judges’ hands. No court clerks! No judicial secretary! No law clerks! No excuses!
BTW, are any of the judges named Mussburger?
Just as all others quick to dismiss to clear the docket of one more case.
Must be getting close to vacation time.
A question for any lawyers in the audience: doesn’t the fact that Vogt requested a declaratory judgement that he’s not a Misprisioner of
ZendaFelony mean that his legal thingummy was, in fact, a “lawsuit”?
Yeah, that’s why the filing is so funny, but the court did not even address that issue as it is so speculative that there is just no standing. The court is not giving advice and the whole misprision approach was flawed from the beginning since it requires active concealment. Perhaps if Vogt were to actively conceal his knowledge and then insist that he is arrested and charged for it, he may have some standing… But no AG is going to seriously consider such a path.
Perhaps Vogt may try to turn himself in under the misprision statute… Now that would be truly novel, but of course, doomed to failure.
Judges don’t generally spend a lot of valuable and expensive court time on the ridiculous.
But they are nice enough to give a pro-se the opportunity to explain himself.
Vogt really ought to be thanking his choice of deity that the suit was dismissed: if the judge had bought his wacky theory, he would have been obligated to convene a special grand jury to indict Vogt since, by his own admission, he took a couple of years to get around to reporting this Crime of the Millenium™ to a federal judge.