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The war on the rule of law
Topic: The war on the rule of law (Read 52587 times)
Reply #400 on:
July 19, 2015, 09:06:45 AM »
Sen. cruz vs.
Reply #401 on:
July 22, 2015, 09:13:51 AM »
This could get very interesting , , ,
Reply #402 on:
July 23, 2015, 10:16:42 PM »
Criminal Inquiry Sought in Hillary Clinton’s Use of Email
By MICHAEL S. SCHMIDT and MATT APUZZOJULY 23, 2015
WASHINGTON — Two inspectors general have asked the Justice Department to open a criminal investigation into whether Hillary Rodham Clinton mishandled sensitive government information on a private email account she used as secretary of state, senior government officials said Thursday.
The request follows an assessment in a June 29 memo by the inspectors general for the State Department and the intelligence agencies that Mrs. Clinton’s private account contained “hundreds of potentially classified emails.” The memo was written to Patrick F. Kennedy, the under secretary of state for management.
It is not clear if any of the information in the emails was marked as classified by the State Department when Mrs. Clinton sent or received them.
But since her use of a private email account for official State Department business was revealed in March, she has repeatedly said that she had no classified information on the account.
Continue reading the main story
Hillary Rodham Clinton in Washington in January 2009, before she took office. In emails, aides asked if they could share her address with members of the Obama administration.
New Trove of Hillary Clinton’s Emails Highlights Workaday Tasks at the State DepartmentJUNE 30, 2015
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton at the State Department in Washington on Sept. 12, 2012, discussing the deaths of four Americans in Benghazi, Libya.
A Closer Look at Hillary Clinton’s Emails on BenghaziMAY 21, 2015
The initial revelation has been an issue in the early stages of her presidential campaign.
The Justice Department has not decided if it will open an investigation, senior officials said. A spokesman for Mrs. Clinton’s campaign declined to comment.
At issue are thousands of pages of State Department emails from Mrs. Clinton’s private account. Mrs. Clinton has said she used the account because it was more convenient, but it also shielded her correspondence from congressional and Freedom of Information Act requests.
She faced sharp criticism after her use of the account became public, and subsequently said she would ask the State Department to release her emails.
The department is now reviewing some 55,000 pages of emails. A first batch of 3,000 pages was made public on June 30.
In the course of the email review, State Department officials determined that some information in the messages should be retroactively classified. In the 3,000 pages that were released, for example, portions of two dozen emails were redacted because they were upgraded to “classified status." But none of those were marked as classified at the time Mrs. Clinton handled them.
In a second memo to Mr. Kennedy, sent on July 17, the inspectors general said that at least one email made public by the State Department contained classified information. The inspectors general did not identify the email or reveal its substance.
The memos were provided to The New York Times by a senior government official.The inspectors general also criticized the State Department for its handling of sensitive information, particularly its reliance on retired senior Foreign Service officers to decide if information should be classified, and for not consulting with the intelligence agencies about its determinations.
In March, Mrs. Clinton insisted that she was careful in her handling of information on her private account. “I did not email any classified material to anyone on my email,” she said. “There is no classified material. So I’m certainly well aware of the classification requirements and did not send classified material.”
In May, the F.B.I. asked the State Department to classify a section of Mrs. Clinton’s emails that related to suspects who may have been arrested in connection with the 2012 attacks in Benghazi, Libya. The information was not classified at the time Mrs. Clinton received it.
The revelations about how Mrs. Clinton handled her email have been an embarrassment for the State Department, which has been repeatedly criticized over its handling of documents related to Mrs. Clinton and her advisers.
On Monday, a federal judge sharply questioned State Department lawyers at a hearing in Washington about why they had not responded to Freedom of Information Act requests from The Associated Press, some of which were four years old.
"I want to find out what’s been going on over there — I should say, what’s not been going on over there," said Judge Richard J. Leon of United States District Court, according to a transcript obtained by Politico. The judge said that “for reasons known only to itself,” the State Department “has been, to say the least, recalcitrant in responding."
Two days later, lawmakers on the Republican-led House committee investigating the 2012 attacks in Benghazi, said they planned to summon Secretary of State John Kerry’s chief of staff to Capitol Hill to answer questions about why the department has not produced documents that the panel has subpoenaed. That hearing is set for next Wednesday.
“The State Department has used every excuse to avoid complying with fundamental requests for documents,” said the chairman of the House committee, Representative Trey Gowdy, Republican of South Carolina.
Mr. Gowdy said that while the committee has used an array of measures to try and get the State Department to hand over documents, the results have been the same. “Our committee is not in possession of all documents needed to do the work assigned to us,” he said.
The State Department has sought to delay the hearing, citing continuing efforts to brief members of Congress on the details of the nuclear accord with Iran.
It is not clear why the State Department has struggled with the classification issues and document production. Republicans have said the department is trying to use those processes to protect Mrs. Clinton.
State Department officials say they simply do not have the resources or infrastructure to properly comply with all the requests. Since March, requests for documents have dramatically increased.
Some State Department officials said they believe many senior officials did not initially take the House committee seriously, which slowed document production and created an appearance of stonewalling.
State Department officials also said that Mr. Kerry is concerned about the toll the criticism has had on the department and has urged his deputies to comply with the requests quickly.
kerry unwilling to say Obama will respect the law
Reply #403 on:
July 28, 2015, 06:36:11 PM »
Kerry seeks to obstruct for Hillary
Reply #404 on:
August 03, 2015, 12:07:36 AM »
Re: Kerry seeks to obstruct for Hillary
Reply #405 on:
August 03, 2015, 07:33:37 AM »
Quote from: Crafty_Dog on August 03, 2015, 12:07:36 AM
Dems uber alles.
Operation Fast and Furious: the gift that keeps on giving
Reply #406 on:
August 03, 2015, 11:38:25 AM »
Five years before he was shot to death in the failed terrorist attack in Garland, Texas, Nadir Soofi walked into a suburban Phoenix gun shop to buy a 9-millimeter pistol.
At the time, Lone Wolf Trading Co. was known among gun smugglers for selling illegal firearms. And with Soofi's history of misdemeanor drug and assault charges, there was a chance his purchase might raise red flags in the federal screening process.
Inside the store, he fudged some facts on the form required of would-be gun buyers.
What Soofi could not have known was that Lone Wolf was at the center of a federal sting operation known as Fast and Furious, targeting Mexican drug lords and traffickers. The idea of the secret program was to allow Lone Wolf to sell illegal weapons to criminals and straw purchasers, and track the guns back to large smuggling networks and drug cartels.
Instead, federal agents lost track of the weapons and the operation became a fiasco, particularly after several of the missing guns were linked to shootings in Mexico and the 2010 killing of U.S. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry in Arizona.
Soofi's attempt to buy a gun caught the attention of authorities, who slapped a seven-day hold on the transaction, according to his Feb. 24, 2010, firearms transaction record, which was reviewed by the Los Angeles Times. Then, for reasons that remain unclear, the hold was lifted after 24 hours, and Soofi got the 9-millimeter.
As the owner of a small pizzeria, the Dallas-born Soofi, son of a Pakistani American engineer and American nurse, would not have been the primary focus of federal authorities, who back then were looking for smugglers and drug lords.
He is now.
In May, Soofi and his roommate, Elton Simpson, burst upon the site of a Garland cartoon convention that was offering a prize for the best depiction of the prophet Muhammad, something offensive to many Muslims. Dressed in body armor and armed with three pistols, three rifles and 1,500 rounds of ammunition, the pair wounded a security officer before they were killed by local police.
A day after the attack, the Department of Justice sent an "urgent firearms disposition request" to Lone Wolf, seeking more information about Soofi and the pistol he bought in 2010, according to a June 1 letter from Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), chairman of the Senate Homeland Security Committee, to U.S. Atty. Gen. Loretta Lynch.
Though the request did not specify whether the gun was used in the Garland attack, Justice Department officials said the information was needed "to assist in a criminal investigation," according to Johnson's letter, also reviewed by The Times.
The FBI so far has refused to release any details, including serial numbers, about the weapons used in Garland by Soofi and Simpson. Senate investigators are now pressing law enforcement agencies for answers, raising the chilling possibility that a gun sold during the botched Fast and Furious operation ended up being used in a terrorist attack against Americans.
Among other things, Johnson is demanding to know whether federal authorities have recovered the gun Soofi bought in 2010, where it was recovered and whether it had been discharged, according to the letter. He also demanded an explanation about why the initial seven-day hold was placed on the 2010 pistol purchase and why it was lifted after 24 hours.
Asked recently for an update on the Garland shooting, FBI Director James B. Comey earlier this month declined to comment. "We're still sorting that out," he said.
Officials at the Justice Department and the FBI declined to answer questions about whether the 9-millimeter pistol was one of the guns used in the Garland attack or seized at Soofi's apartment.
at 7:09 AM August 03, 2015
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It remains unclear whether Soofi's 2010 visit to Lone Wolf is a bizarre coincidence or a missed opportunity for federal agents to put Soofi on their radar years before his contacts with Islamic extremists brought him to their attention.
Though Islamic State militants have claimed to have helped organize the Garland attack, U.S. officials are still investigating whether Soofi and Simpson received direct support from the group or were merely inspired by its calls for violence against the West.
Comey suggested that the attack fits the pattern of foreign terrorist groups indoctrinating American citizens through the Internet. He referred to it as the "crowdsourcing of terrorism."
In a handwritten letter apparently mailed hours before the attack, Soofi said he was inspired by the writings of Islamic cleric Anwar Awlaki, an American citizen killed in a 2011 U.S. drone strike in Yemen.
"I love you," Soofi wrote to his mother, Sharon Soofi, "and hope to see you in eternity." In a telephone interview, Sharon Soofi described the letter and said her son had been shot twice in the head and once in the chest, according to autopsy findings she received.
At the time of the 2010 gun purchase, Soofi ran a Phoenix pizza parlor. His mother said that was about the same time he met Simpson, who worked for Soofi at the restaurant. They later shared an apartment, a short drive from the Lone Wolf store.
Reached by telephone, Andre Howard, owner of Lone Wolf, denied that his store sold the gun to Soofi. "Not here," Howard said before hanging up.
Sharon Soofi said her son had told her he wanted the pistol for protection because his restaurant was in a "rough area." She said he also acquired an AK-47 assault rifle at the end of last year or early this year, when authorities believe he and Simpson were plotting an attack on the Super Bowl in Arizona.
"I tried to convince him that, what in the world do you need an AK-47 for?" she said in a telephone interview. Soofi told her they practiced target shooting in the desert. Her younger son, Ali Soofi, was living with his brother and Simpson at the time, she said, but left after becoming frightened by the weapons, ammunition and militant Islamist literature.
She blamed Simpson for radicalizing her son, who she said had no history of religious extremism. A month before Soofi bought the pistol, Simpson was indicted on charges of lying to the FBI about his plans to travel to Somalia and engage in "violent jihad," according to federal court documents.
Simpson was jailed until March 2011 and convicted of making false statements. But the judge ruled there was insufficient evidence to prove the false statements were connected to international terrorism. Simpson was released and placed on probation.
After the Garland attack, the FBI arrested a third man, Abdul Malik Abdul Kareem, and charged him with planning the Garland attack. At a detention hearing on June 16, prosecutors and an FBI agent provided details about the plot, but avoided discussing the history of the firearms.
Sharon Soofi said she found her son's letter in her post office box. It was dated the Saturday before the attack, and postmarked in Dallas on Monday, the day after the assault, suggesting he dropped it in the mailbox before he and Simpson arrived in Garland. "In the name of Allah," the letter began, "I am sorry for the grief I have caused."
He referred to "those Muslims who are being killed, slandered, imprisoned, etc. for their religion," and concluded, "I truly love you, Mom, but this life is nothing but shade under the tree and a journey. The reality is the eternal existence in the hereafter."
Well, this certainly seems suspicious , , ,
Reply #407 on:
August 03, 2015, 02:57:23 PM »
A ray of hope?
Reply #408 on:
August 03, 2015, 09:28:44 PM »
Re: A ray of hope?
Reply #409 on:
August 03, 2015, 10:32:19 PM »
Quote from: Crafty_Dog on August 03, 2015, 09:28:44 PM
I am going to have to start sending money to judicial watch.
WSJ: NLRB smacked down again
Reply #410 on:
August 12, 2015, 10:31:42 AM »
Solomon should not have had the job.
Lafe Solomon in 2011. ENLARGE
Lafe Solomon in 2011. Photo: Sonja Y. Foster/Bloomberg
Aug. 11, 2015 7:47 p.m. ET
One of President Obama’s legacies will be his abuse of executive authority, and his hits keep coming. On Friday a federal appeals court struck down a ruling of the National Labor Relations Board because, incredibly, its acting general counsel was in the job illegally.
The scofflaw was Lafe Solomon, whom readers may recall for his legal complaints against the likes of Boeing for wanting to build planes in right-to-work South Carolina instead of union-dominated Washington. It turns out Mr. Solomon was the one violating the law.
A unanimous three-judge panel of the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals struck down a 2014 NLRB ruling against an Arizona ambulance company, SW General. The panel found that Messrs. Solomon and Obama had violated the Federal Vacancies Reform Act, which generally holds that a person cannot serve as an “acting” officer of an agency while also nominated for the post.
Mr. Obama directed Mr. Solomon to serve as NLRB acting general counsel in June 2010. Six months later he nominated Mr. Solomon for the post. The Senate refused to confirm him and he left the NLRB in November 2013. Yet before he departed Mr. Solomon issued the complaint against SW General and many other companies.
Congress passed the vacancies reform law to prevent precisely this kind of presidential gambit. In 1997 Republicans blocked the nomination of Bill Lann Lee for assistant attorney general at the Justice Department. President Bill Clinton then named Mr. Lee in an “acting” capacity—a move designed to let him serve the remainder of the Administration without Senate approval. Congress then tightened the rules, which Messrs. Obama and Solomon violated so flagrantly that the Administration barely offered a defense in court.
Judge Karen Henderson, a George H.W. Bush appointee, wrote the opinion and was joined by two Obama appointees. The ruling only applies to the SW General case, but it is an open invitation to Mr. Solomon’s other corporate targets to seek relief as well.
This is the third legal strike against Mr. Obama’s NLRB. The D.C. Circuit ruled against his recess appointees in 2013 and the Supreme Court did the same in 2014. The evidence builds that this is the most lawless Administration since Richard Nixon’s.
Meet the IGs of Hillarygate
Reply #411 on:
August 15, 2015, 08:08:21 AM »
Cop Shot and Killed
Reply #412 on:
September 01, 2015, 01:42:35 PM »
Another cop shot and killed this morning in Illinois.
I am listening to the Police Scanner on my Ipad. Lake County Sheriff. Interesting listening in to the hunt.
Did this for Ferguson and Baltimore. When they were going on, listening really provided a true understanding of how bad the riots were. (Full disclosure.....I was a military cop so I LOVE this shit, as long as cops don't die.)
WSJ: IRS update
Reply #413 on:
September 02, 2015, 01:59:22 PM »
by James Taranto
Sept. 2, 2015 1:30 p.m. ET
Hillary Clinton is not the only official of the Obama administration to have engaged in email shenanigans. While we were away last week, as the Washington Times reported, a court filing from the Internal Revenue Service revealed that “Lois Lerner had yet another personal email account used to conduct some IRS business”:
The admission came in an open-records lawsuit filed by Judicial Watch, a conservative public interest law firm that has sued to get a look at emails Ms. Lerner sent during the targeting [of political dissenters for IRS harassment].
IRS lawyer Geoffrey J. Klimas told the court that as the agency was putting together a set of documents to turn over to Judicial Watch, it realized Ms. Lerner had used yet another email account, in addition to her official one and another personal one already known to the agency.
“In addition to emails to or from an email account denominated ‘Lois G. Lerner‘ or ‘Lois Home,’ some emails responsive to Judicial Watch’s request may have been sent to or received from a personal email account denominated ‘Toby Miles,’ ” Mr. Klimas told Judge Emmet G. Sullivan, who is hearing the case.
At first we wondered why Lerner would use a masculine pseudonym. Then we realized Toby is an epicene name and we’d been thinking of Toby Flenderson, the officious bureaucrat from NBC’s “The Office.” At any rate, Fox News appears to have come up with the explanation: “Two sources told Fox News that Toby Miles is the name of Lerner’s dog.”
Confusingly, Lerner’s canine shares a surname with her husband, and Fox adds that “Lerner’s husband Michael Miles also reportedly may have been linked to the account.” Which goes to prove the old saying: On the Internet, nobody knows you’re a dog.
This week, as blogger William Jacobson reports, yet another fake Lerner email came to light:
In . . . an August 31, 2015 Status Report, the IRS revealed that Lerner also used “a second personal email account” that, unlike the Toby Miles account, “does not appear to be associated with a denomination; only the email address itself appears.” The IRS refuses to disclose the email address for either the Toby Miles or the newly discovered account.
“Denomination,” in this context, is a fancy name for “name,” not a reference to money or religion. In its filing, the IRS reported that the emails in the denominationless account “all were either non-responsive [to the Freedom of Information Act request] or were duplicates of material previously released to Judicial Watch.”
Why Lerner needed so many email addresses is something of a mystery, but she’s not alone among Obama administration officials. The Daily Signal’s Sharyl Attkisson noted in March:
Former Obama EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson used private email accounts, as well as a secret EPA email address under the pseudonym “Richard Windsor,” to conduct official business. That included communicating with a climate lobbyist.
In Justice Department emails turned over in a federal Freedom of Information Act lawsuit, [then-Attorney General Eric] Holder’s email name is redacted with no explanation. It’s unknown whether the redactions conceal use of an email address that does not belong to an official government account.
The Washington Times reports on yet another thwarted IRS attempt to evade public scrutiny:
A federal judge Friday ordered the IRS to turn over the records of any requests from the White House seeking taxpayers’ private information from the tax agency, delivering a victory to a group that for two years has been trying to pry the data loose.
It’s not clear that there were any such requests—but Judge Amy Berman Jackson said the IRS cannot just refuse to say so by citing taxpayer confidentiality laws, known as section 6103 of the tax code.
Richard Pollock, then of the Washington Examiner, explained the background in a 2013 piece:
Treasury Department investigators completed but never released a 2011 law enforcement probe of White House economic advisor Austan Goolsbee, The Washington Examiner has learned.
The investigation by the Treasury Department Inspector-General for Tax Administration was sparked by Goolsbee’s remarks during an Aug. 27, 2010, White House news briefing in which he appeared to possess confidential tax information on Koch Industries, the private conglomerate controlled by the Koch brothers, Charles and David.
“So in this country we have partnerships, we have S corps, we have LLCs, we have a series of entities that do not pay corporate income tax. Some of which are really giant firms, you know Koch Industries is a multi-billion dollar business,” Goolsbee said.
It is illegal for government officials to make public confidential tax information. Goolsbee was chief White House economist at the time.
Six senators requested an investigation of Goolsbee’s remark under Section 6103 of the Internal Revenue Code, which protects taxpayers’ privacy. The IRS conducted the probe, then refused to reveal its findings, including to the senators and the Kochs—because, it said, they included taxpayer information that was confidential under Section 6103.
A group called Cause of Action filed the FOIA lawsuit seeking, among other things, “any communications by or from anyone in the Executive Office of the President constituting requests for taxpayer or ‘return information’ ” protected by Section 6103. Again, the IRS balked, saying such requests were private under Section 6103. That was the claim Judge Jackson rejected:
Congress amended section 6103 in 1976 “in the wake of Watergate and White House efforts to harass those on its ‘enemies list,’ ” in order to “restrict government officers and employees from revealing ‘any return’ or ‘return information,’” and its “core purpose” is to “protect taxpayer privacy.”
So, this Court questions whether section 6103 should or would shield records that indicate that confidential taxpayer information was misused, or that government officials made an improper attempt to access that information.
The IRS argues that “section 6103’s definition of ‘return information’ . . . makes no distinction based on the purpose for which a person might seek disclosure of the documents.” But accepting this argument would require a finding that even requests for return information that could involve a violation of section 6103 constitute “return information” that is exempt from disclosure under FOIA Exemption 3 [which incorporates other statutes’ nondisclosure provisions] and section 6103.
The Court is unwilling to stretch the statute so far, and it cannot conclude that section 6103 may be used to shield the very misconduct it was enacted to prohibit.
Whether the IRS is concealing misconduct is unknown; it’s possible, for instance, that the Goolsbee report found nothing amiss and its suppression was a product of mere bureaucratic monomania. Similarly, it’s possible Mrs. Clinton actually did turn over printouts of all her work-related emails to the State Department, but we may never know. In any case, it’s unreasonable for government officials to expect us to trust their assurances when they take such pains to prevent their verification.
On a happier note, it’s worth mentioning that the judges in both these cases were Democratic appointees. Emmet Sullivan was nominated by Bill Clinton in 1994 and Amy Jackson by Barack Obama in 2011. Independence and integrity are not dead, at least in the judicial branch.
Things fall apart
Reply #414 on:
September 03, 2015, 08:44:04 AM »
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