Patterico's Pontifications


More Trump Lies That Big Media Won’t Mention

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:40 pm

This is the next installment in my “Big Media applies a different standard to Donald Trump” series.


Via the Weekly Standard, we find this New York Daily News piece from 2006:

Donald Trump, the Rockefeller Group and Ford Models were among the tycoons and huge corporations that received federal 9/11 recovery grants earmarked by Congress for small businesses, a Daily News investigation has found. Other unlikely recipients include subsidiaries of corporate giants Dell Inc., Morgan Stanley, The AXA Group and the Bank of China, records show. Even World Trade Center leaseholder Larry Silverstein’s company qualified for some small-business recovery aid. The firms were allowed to collect small-business grants because the state agency that dished out the free money, the Empire State Development Corp., ignored the federal definition of a small business and adopted a much looser standard.

Good luck getting Big Media to press Trump on this. They would certainly press another candidate who went on and on about 9/11 the way Trump did after Cruz brought up “New York Values.”


Bret Baier says Donald Trump’s “self-funding” line is important to voters:

Bret Baier also knows that the self-funding line is false:

Screen Shot 2016-02-15 at 7.48.44 PM

Blogger has idea:

Idea rejected:

I feel certain that another candidate who claimed he was self-funding but was not, would get called on it.


He keeps saying this, but nobody has found an instance where he said it before the war started. Many have tried. All have failed. You’re a Trump fan? Be the first human in history to prove this oft-asserted fact!

A presidential candidate who made such a claim, but could not prove it, would generally be called out hard in a debate or interview. Has this happened? I haven’t seen it.


Enough said:


Stop applying a different standard to this man. His fans do. Don’t be chumps like them.

144 Responses to “More Trump Lies That Big Media Won’t Mention”

  1. Time for papertiger and ropelight to spin or ignore these points. Or hide.

    Patterico (86c8ed)


    this works better here. Rush is now doubting Trump.

    jrt for cruz (bc7456)

  3. And his hotels hire illegals.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  4. Can you think of anything that would endear any so-called Republican candidate to the media more than saying that Bush lied about Saddam having WMDs? Trump is now golden with those tools.

    nk (dbc370)

  5. Perry said to stay out of Iraq often enough. Maybe Trump is Perry.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  6. the reality here, is how the top men, allowed this ‘narrative’ to form, some bought it early, like trump and say tucker carlson, to name two contemporary figures, some took longer, but the purpose to surrender Iraq to AQ, was still the same,

    narciso (732bc0)


    I almost feel sorry for Trump here for the lashings he is getting

    jrt for cruz (bc7456)

  8. I sure hope that Cruz is running the Trump claims that W caused 9/11 and lied to get us into the Iraq war. Over and over.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  9. Every time Trump said “Top men” in that debate, I thought of this (SFW):

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  10. jrt–

    Well, yes, for all the uncommitted voters who watch The Blaze videos.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  11. that’s why I use it, it illustrates the mindset of a rove, a schmidt, et al,

    narciso (732bc0)

  12. certainly his cohort, which include dissafected democrats don’t care, they have seem a stalemate if not a defeat in a multiple front war, they have seen jobs dissappear, and the TPP is more of the same, they have the merrygoround of jail to deportation to ingress of criminal aliens, which no one has done much, or even said much in 20 years,

    narciso (732bc0)

  13. Ted Cruz said some nice things about John Roberts back in the day before we knew where John Roberts stood on the Constitution. Donald Trump said some nice things about Hillary Clinton back in the day when we already knew where Hillary Clinton stood on the Constitution.

    As Reagan famously said, “It’s a choice, not an echo.”

    Cruz Supporter (102c9a)

  14. In 1996, while Ted Cruz was clerking for Chief Justice William Rehnquist — having his papers graded by, among others, the Chief’s frequent ally Justice Scalia — Donald Trump was apparently trying to romance the recently divorced Princess Diana.

    Which one do you think might be qualified to pick Scalia’s replacement?

    Beldar (fa637a)

  15. I will point out that California voted overwhelmingly to make live difficult for illegals back in the 90’s and the feds came and made us stop. Now we are overrun and have had to find an accommodation and the rest of the country seems to think that 1) we were OK with iot all along, and 2) it wasn’t their effing fault.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  16. *life not live. traitor fingers.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  17. But, Beldar. He’ll hire Top Men to do that. As in #9.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  18. I don’t think it will have as much impact as you think,

    narciso (732bc0)

  19. In 2005, Ted Cruz won the Van Orden v. Perry case in the United States Supreme Court, in which the SCOTUS, by a 5/4 vote, upheld the display of the Ten Commandments on a monument at the Texas State Capitol. How good a job did Cruz do? Consider that on the same day, in a companion case — McCreary County v. ACLU — the SCOTUS struck down, as a violation of the First Amendment’s Establishment Clause, Kentucky’s display of the (very same) Ten Commandments in two Kentucky courtrooms, again by a 5/4 margin.

    That’s a nice piece of legal work, no? Constitutional scholars notice things like that.

    In 2005, Donald Trump was hosting Bill & Hillary Clinton at Trump’s third wedding.

    Again: Which one do you think is better qualified to pick Justice Scalia’s successor?

    Beldar (fa637a)

  20. I’m not hiding Huckleberry. I’m right here. I was embarrassed by Trump’s performance at the last debate. It was a set-up and Trump walked into CBS’s trap. They salted the audience, used canned audio to emphasize displeasure with boos and cat calls when Trump spoke, and applause when his detractors attacked him.

    Rather than remain calm and respond with facts, Trump got emotional and responded with the meanest things he could say. It was wrong and stupid. I expect better from him. He hurt himself and he made it more difficult for his supporters, like me, to explain why he behaved so badly.

    I won’t defend his boorish performance, he should apologize to JEB Bush, George W Bush, and George HW Bush, possibly also to Ted Cruz – but that’s for another day.

    ropelight (ed3ef5)

  21. I’m going to classify this as a Trump lie, since he’s always bragging about what a great President he’s going to be and how much he knows and that he’ll know more than anyone else about this sort.of thing when he’s inaugurated.

    Donald Trump: Well, that, the war with Iraq which started this whole thing, the whole thing starts with the war in Iraq. You know, Saddam Hussein was a terrible guy but one thing about him, he killed terrorists. Now Iraq is Harvard for terrorism. You want to become a terrorist, you go to Iraq. Saddam Hussein understood and he killed terrorists.

    Read more:

    Saddam Hussein provided so much support for terrorists before Desert Storm that one of the conditions of the cease fire was that he end all support for international terrorism. We didn’t know all the details at the time but during Desert Storm he was attempting to enlist terrorist groups in his orbit to widen the the theater of operations by attacking US interests both domestically and internationally. The conflict ended before anything came to fruition. One of the types of support he provided terrorists was with travel documentation.

    Ramzi Youssef, the mastermind of the 1993 WTC bombing, entered the US to conduct his attack on a legit Iraqi passport.

    Throughout the ’90s he held several terrorist summits; all the major Islamic terrorist groups attended. He also very publicly provided

    Steve57 (f61b03)


    He keeps saying this, but nobody has found an instance where he said it before the war started. Many have tried. All have failed. You’re a Trump fan? Be the first human in history to prove this oft-asserted fact!

    A presidential candidate who made such a claim, but could not prove it, would generally be called out hard in a debate or interview. Has this happened? I haven’t seen it.

    A Presidential candidate who went on lying about his position on the war wth Iraq would called out hard?

    I don’t know about that. The media is in general very remiss. Because every once in a while something goes viral, there’s the appearance that the media catches people.

    In 1991/2 Bill Clinton went around saying that he was the only Democratic candidate who ahd supported the Iraq war (the first one – called the Gulf War) and that was why he could get elected…but it wasn;’t true.

    There was a New York Post story about it, and maybe, I’m not sure, Jerry Brown tried to make something out of it, but basically he got away with that lie. He did have an answer to questions.

    He had not cast a vote because he was a Governor not a Senator, so it was difficult to disprove. But he was not on record as supporting the war.

    Supposedly, maybe, he had told the Arkansas Congressional delegation to vote in favor of it.

    This siw aht Saloin says, and is consistent with my memory of what I read in 1992:

    In Little Rock during the months leading up to Desert Storm, he’d ducked questions about it, finally telling a reporter on the eve of the war that he agreed with the arguments against it but probably would have voted for it. When it became clear that the war was a political winner, Clinton simplified that statement: He’d been for the war before the beginning. If it wasn’t technically true, well, it wasn’t technically untrue either.

    That’s right. The clearest thing he was on record as saying before the war was that he agreed with the argumenmts against it but would have vooted for it. And that was hard to find.

    Sammy Finkelman (882d94)

  23. Today’s lesson: Fractions!

    Ted Cruz has argued before the United States Supreme Court nine times.

    Donald Trump has only one-third as many wives, but 4/9ths as many waves of corporate bankruptcy.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  24. I hate this laptop. To continue:

    He also very publicly provided generous payments to the families of suicide bombers. He did this to demonstrate he could defy the US and the ceasefire conditions at will and without consequence.

    In 2003 US forces captured Abu Abbas on the outskirts of Baghdad. He was one of the Achille Lauro hijackers who killed American Leon Klinghoffer. Abu Abbas fled to Iraq because of Saddam Hussein’s long and well known track record.

    Since it was such common knowledge, surely the Donald is lying when he pretends to think Saddam Hussein killed terrorists.

    In 2003 federal district court judge Harold Baer ruled in favor of plaintiffs suing Iraq for its involvement in the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The judge said that the plaintiffs had established, albeit just barely, that Saddam Hussein had provided material support to the 9/11 attacks.

    But “just barely” means they had met their burden which means they had proven their case.

    They didn’t collect a dime of the $104 million judgement as the Bush admin said they needed every dime of $1.7 billion in frozen Iraqi assets for the rebuilding of that country. But the Bush administration nor anyone else has ever disputed the validity of the link.

    Surely the Donald know this given it happened in a Manhattan courtroom, and it concerned the WTC attacks on 9/11 which he claims to be so broken up about.

    Ergo Trump is a liar.

    But if anyone wants to convince me he’s a buffoon and a blithering idiot that wouldn’t be too hard either.

    P.S. I am more and more convinced he’s a Clinton plant, running as a republican only to turn everything into s***fest and make everyone look bad. His channeling of crazy leftist code pink conspiracy theories to attack the bushes and his constant references to how is GOP candidacy gives him standing to sue Cruz over his citizenship are a couple of clues. Not all of them.

    Just like my list of Saddam’s terrorist ties isn’t exhaustive, either.

    Steve57 (f61b03)

  25. Hussein was providing shelter and a base for international terrorists, he was paying bounties to the families of “Palestinian” terrorists, he had a terrorist training camp in Iraq, and in early 2000 he put out a call for Iraqis with piloting experience to volunteer for an attack on the USA. (I believe the Atta who met the Iraqi ambassador in Prague was the same one who ran the AQ operation, and that the purpose of this meeting was to warn Iraq off, for fear that these efforts would jeopardize the AQ plot.) I’d like to know which terrorists Hussein was killing. Unless he means Abu Nidal, once he became a liability.

    Milhouse (87c499)

  26. Sorry Steve, we cross-posted.

    Milhouse (87c499)

  27. 20. I won’t defend his boorish performance, he should apologize to JEB Bush, George W Bush, and George HW Bush, possibly also to Ted Cruz – but that’s for another day.

    ropelight (ed3ef5) — 2/15/2016 @ 10:20 pm

    What do you think of his insanely stupid remarks about how he thinks Saddam Hussein was a terrorist killer?

    He’s not even making an effort to hide the fact he doesn’t give a rat’s @$$ about knowing what he’s talking about. He’s showing off the fact that he’s not qualified to be commander in chief, and he won’t even to pretend he’s getting ready for the job.

    His comments about Saddam Hussein and terrorism are some of the most boneheaded things I’ve ever heard. That isn’t even national security 101. That’s national security universal daycare-level stuff.

    Are you going to give him a pass on that?

    Steve57 (f61b03)

  28. No problem Milhouse. That’s the point, really. You know what Saddam Hussein was up to. I know what Saddam Hussein was up to. Millions of people know it.

    Any one of us would make a better President than this jack@$$.

    And I choose that particular beast on purpose. Because that’s the Dem’s symbol. He’s convincing me he’s still art of it. The back end part.

    Steve57 (f61b03)

  29. @ ropelight (#20): I agree that the audience was over-involved and probably unrepresentative. I think everyone except Ben Carson got booed, though. Certainly everyone was under pressure. I’m still trying to figure you out, but I give you credit for a brave and honest post.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  30. This is just to put here something that got buried in one of the megathreads: I don’t agree with Patterico that invading Iraq was a mistake. Even if we had known in 2003 everything that we know now, I would still say that it had to be done — but not immediately. Given what we now know it could have waited a year or three, giving us time to do a better job in Afghanistan first.

    Another mistake in hindsight; given what we knew by the day of the invasion, i.e. that Blair’s insistence on seeking a Security Council resolution would drag the process out for months and still fail, it was a mistake to waste time trying for it, meanwhile giving Hussein so much time to prepare. The whole thing should have happened later, but once it started it shouldn’t have taken as long as it did to get from the agreement with Blair to the actual invasion.

    Milhouse (87c499)

  31. Milhouse, the case against Saddam Hussein was iron clad. Iraq was in material breach of multiple conditions of the ceasefire within weeks of signing the Safwan Accord.

    It simply didn’t matter if he actually had WMDs or not. He had to prove he had dismantled every aspect of his WMD program by among other things cooperate with international inspections.*

    But the American public has been so thoroughly misinformed and frankly lied to they have been convinced of several things that aren’t true.

    The only justification for invading Iraq was if Hussein had WMDs. No there were a laundry list of requirements. All of them were important (if the requirements aren’t important then they don’t belong in a ceasefire; each individual condition must be worth fighting over). Many of the condition we placed on Iraq had nothing to do with WMDs. Such as, the condition that Iraq end its support for international terrorism.

    Oddly, some people know there were many conditions placed on Iraq, but some people seem to think Iraq had to violate all the conditions. No, a single violation of a single condition is sufficient for the enforcing power to resume hostilities per the Law Of Armed Conflict.

    That ceasefires end wars. I can see why many civilians would be under this misconception, thanks to the stupidity of the UN both in theory and practice. But wars only end with peace treaties. A ceasefire is simply a conditional agreement to stop shooting at each other while the state of war still exists so the belligerents can negotiate a peace treaty. It is essentially a hiatus in the fighting, nothing more.

    So it was impossible for George Bush to “lie” us into war. We were already at war. Along with Korea, Iraq was one of the only two places where no President could have lied us into war. Bush didn’t start a second Iraq war; there was only one very long Iraq war that lasted through three presidencies. Bush2 was the President who put an end to that one war.

    Which is why I disagree with you. It couldn’t have waited. It never should have lasted as long as it did. Either GWB’s dad or Clinton should have ended that war years earlier.

    Why couldn’t it wait? Well…'s_Bio-Warfare_Threat%3A_an_interview_with_Dr._Jill_Dekker/

    When news leaked out of the September 6th Israeli Air Force and commando raid on a Syrian Nuclear facility followed by revelations about the deaths of dozens of Iranians and Syrians in a Chemical warfare missile accident in July the world was jarred. Recently, it was revealed that the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea) had aided Syria in its chemical warfare programs. I noted in a recent interview with former US UN Ambassador John Bolton his early concerns about the Syrian Bio Warfare threat. Questions arose, specifically about the size, nature and danger of the Syrian bio-warfare military programs. For answers and professional views on how extensive the Syrian bio-warfare threat is, we turned to Dr. Jill Dekker, a consultant to the NATO Defense Establishment in bio-warfare and counter terrorism. Dr. Dekker is also a member of the board of advisors of the Intelligence Summit.

    Dr. Dekker’s answers give a foreboding picture of how large and refined the Syrian bio-warfare programs are and how little Western Intelligence knows about how the programs were developed. The potential exists for a significant WMD threat in the Middle East and the West, especially, against America. Syria is a proxy ally of Iran, North Korea (DPRK) and terror groups such as Hezbollah, Islamic Jihad and Hamas. Thus, the supply of bio-weapons and delivery platforms that could results in mass casualties makes it a real and present danger.

    Gordon: What external resources did the Syrian military establishment draw upon to develop its Bio-warfare capabilities?

    Dekker: The Syrians work on most Category A pathogens: anthrax, plague, tularemia, botulinium, smallpox, aflotoxin, cholera, ricin, camelpox. Some of these they acquired during natural outbreaks, others they acquired from the Soviets, Russians, DPRK, Iran and Iraq.

    Gee, I wonder when Iraq became one of their sources?

    Gordon: We heard that some of the late Saddam Hussein’s Bio-warfare research and pathogens may have been transferred to Syria during Operation Enduring Freedom. Is that accurate to your knowledge, and who facilitated the transfer? What types of bio-warfare agents and materials might have been transferred?

    Dekker: Yes. It is important to remember that the Iraqi programs were far more advanced at the time than what the Syrians had, and were developing. The delivery of certain pathogens in a ‘weaponized’ form taught the Syrians new techniques they previously had not mastered. This is very problematic. I am less concerned about the types of pathogens or specific pathogens as these were available to Syria from other sources. What Hussein’s transfer taught the Syrians was more sophisticated ways of weaponization and dispersal. I believe Russian special ops- their Spetsnaz teams – transported sections of the programs. Remember these are not MIRVed ICBM’s we are talking about – you don’t need to stockpile biological weapons. It is the quality of the pathogen and ‘weaponization’ or aerosolization, milling processes that count, not the quantity. I don’t believe they moved some biological arsenals into the Baqaa Valley in Lebanon, perhaps sections of their chemical and nuclear weapons, but not the biological programs. Those are much too sensitive to dump in the desert. They must be carefully maintained in a defense laboratory. If you take something like Bot – I gram of crystalline Botulinium is estimated to kill about a million people if it were evenly dispersed – you don’t want to bury it out in the desert.

    That Iraq war went on for far, far too long. It never should have gotten this far. Frankly Clinton and, I’m sad to say, Bush1 were derelict in their duties and given the situation in Syria today the price for that delay is practically guaranteed to be enormous.

    *This is going to come back and bite us on the Iran nuclear deal. Which is exactly what the Obama/Kerry anti-American crime syndicate intends. Now that they know the American public has been lied to so thoroughly about the lead up to the Iraq war, they have the public convinced that the only thing worth fighting over is if Iran actually has nuclear weapons. And they have turned the whole idea of an inspections regime on its head. Instead of Iran being required to prove to the inspectors that they are in fact clean, which is the only way an inspection regime can work, the onus will be on a future administration to prove with absolute certainty that Iran is dirty. Which is why Kerry is lying that our intel capabilities are so good we can know. Because it can’t be done. This is why it’s not an exaggeration; Obama wants to guarantee that Iran gets nuclear weapons. Because any President who relies on intel which Kerry knows damn well can’t do the job to provide the evidence Iran has nukes (if it could, we wouldn’t need inspectors) will be accused of lying us into war.

    In other words they have learned from the mistakes we made with Iraq. And they want to repeat them to America’s detriment.

    Steve57 (f61b03)

  32. I meant to say I agree with you, Milhouse, that invading Iraq was no mistake. It was absolutely the right thing to do. Where I disagree is on the timing.

    Steve57 (f61b03)

  33. When the trump carnival started, I thought, great someone giving the media a bad time. But in the last month he has stumbled off the reservation and into the democrats ocean of talking points. All i can say now is drown you sick Bastige.
    Trump/Pelosi 2016

    mg (31009b)

  34. South Carolinians can show their smarts or prove their nuts.

    mg (31009b)


    EPRS | European Parliamentary Research Service
    Beatrix Immenkamp
    Members’ Research Service
    PE 572.806

    ISIL/Da’esh and ‘non-conventional’ weapons of terror

    Steve57 (f61b03)

  36. This is going to be bad.

    Pons Asinorum (49e2e8)

  37. I will drink Mexican water and eat gas station sushi before I ever vote for trump.

    mg (31009b)

  38. Boosh/Manning 2016

    mg (31009b)

  39. After 30 years, it is time team republican repays these democrats for the classless actions taken towards Bork. These gutless republicans owe us that.

    mg (31009b)

  40. trump is the thing with feathers that perches on the soul

    happyfeet (831175)


    The Lies We Believed (And Still Believe) About Iraq
    June 27, 2014
    by Charles Lewis

    At the end of 2004, a series of public opinion polls offered disturbing news. More than half of all Americans, we learned, believed that there had been weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) in Iraq — the principal raison d’être for George W. Bush’s war of choice there — despite the fact that numerous widely publicized bipartisan and international reports had definitively shown that no such weapons existed. This stubborn refusal to face the facts about Iraq continues today for millions of Americans. [1]

    Facts are and must be the coin of the realm in a democracy, for government “of the people, by the people, and for the people,” in Abraham Lincoln’s words, requires an informed citizenry. [2] But in regard to the Iraq War, it seems, facts are now irrelevant or at least debatable, a mere matter of opinion, for a majority of Americans. And if facts no longer matter to millions of our fellow citizens, then what becomes of the traditional role of the journalist as the independent watchdog digging through obfuscation, secrecy and deception by the powerful in search of what Carl Bernstein once called “the best obtainable version of the truth”?

    This is a question that touches me personally — not just as a concerned citizen, but as someone who has dedicated his life and work to the pursuit of truth. In more than three decades as an investigative reporter in Washington, DC, my approach toward those in power, regardless of party or ideology, has followed the principle “Watch what they do, not what they say.”

    Politicians, captains of industry, and their zealous aides too often resemble circus barkers, shilling for attention and advantage, with little regard for accuracy or veracity, using the press and the news media not to enlighten but to bamboozle the public in pursuit of votes, profits and power. When necessary, they even employ the wiles of deception to conceal, disguise, or justify unseemly and sometimes outright criminal behavior. As George Orwell wrote, in words that still ring true more than half a century after they were written, “Political speech and writing are largely the defence [sic] of the indefensible . . . Political language . . . is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind.”[3]

    That’s the kind of carp the country was bombarded with. Day in day out 24/7.
    That’s a pretty good representative selection of the front pages and town square during the Bush adminstration.
    here’s the footnote [1] ABC News/Washington Post poll, March 13, 2005: “Shortly before the war, do you think Iraq did have weapons of mass destruction that have not been found, or do you think Iraq did not have any weapons of mass destruction?” The response: 56 percent of the respondents answered yes, did have; 40 percent said did not have; 4 percent had no opinion. See also NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll, January 19, 2005: “Do you think that Iraq did or did not have weapons of mass destruction before the war began?” The response: 54 percent answered yes, did have; 40 percent said no, did not have, and 6 percent were “not sure.” In a Dartmouth University survey of 1,056 respondents developed by Associate Professor Benjamin Valentino and conducted by YouGov (formerly Polimetrix) between April 26 and May 2, 2012, 63 percent of Republicans said they believed that Saddam Hussein’s Iraq had weapons of mass destruction when the United States invaded it in 2003.

    Notice that it doesn’t prove, “that numerous widely publicized bipartisan and international reports had definitively shown that no such weapons existed” the only thing that needed proving.
    It’s misdirection. Slight of hand. Deceit. But it also make a catchy bumpersticker.
    And wasn’t “bush lied” the overarching premise of a string of Hollywood feature films, released like ducks in a row, most of them flops both artistically and financially. But that wasn’t the point was it?

    The point was to erode the public confidence so that demoralized GOP voters stay home, allowing the Dems to take the levers of government. And it worked. Pelosi becomes speaker. Reid takes over the Senate.
    Bush was perfectly happy to hide the wmd as classified info and leave the country in the clutches of homebrewed enemies. Sure he told MI6 and Mosssad. But for us, we got the stiff arm.
    Want to talk about temperament? George Bush was so insulted that the public wouldn’t take his holy word for it and ask to see the physical evidence, that he stomped his foot down and said no.
    You can’t see the evidence, in fact you’ll never see it.

    The day after the premier of Fahrenheit 911 Bush could have had trucks full of Saddam’s chemical weapons parked across the street, and then given an interview to Mike Wallace standing on top of the load. The world would been a better place for it.

    But instead Bush broke faith with us. He did not conduct the war on the home front. He left us hanging.

    So don’t be surprised when “Bush lied people died” goes over pretty well in North Carolina.
    And don’t blame it on stupidity of voters.

    papertiger (c2d6da)

  42. Iraq. Stunning Failure. America pooped herself.

    No more Bushes.

    Let’s move on.

    happyfeet (831175)

  43. South Carolina right? Oops. Red in the face.

    First post debate poll

    PPP poll of South Carolina: Trump 35, Rubio 18, Cruz 18, Kasich 10

    But I thought Trump blew it losing his cool like that in front of all those GOP establishment contributors?

    That farking odd. Maybe the barrels bent.

    papertiger (c2d6da)

  44. kasich is doing really really good compared to bush

    happyfeet (831175)

  45. Trump/Jenner/or whatever 2016

    mg (31009b)

  46. Rubio/Grhamnesty 2016

    mg (31009b)

  47. Also Brett did not correct him on absurd claim Cruz appointed John Roberts.

    Mr. The Donald never said that ted cruz appointed disastrous harvardtrash sleazebag John Roberts to failmerica’s joke of a supreme court. He just said that ted cruz was a big roberts fanboy.

    TRUMP: Ted Cruz told your brother that he wanted John Roberts to be on the United States Supreme Court. They both pushed him, he twice approved Obamacare.


    DICKERSON: Senator Cruz, 30 seconds on this one.

    CRUZ: I did not nominate John Roberts. I would not have nominated John Roberts.

    TRUMP: You pushed him. You pushed him.

    CRUZ: I supported…

    TRUMP: You worked with him and you pushed him. Why do you lie?

    it’s a fair criticism, how one filthy elitist harvardtrash lawyer pushed another one

    it’s who they are it’s what they do

    harvard uber alles

    happyfeet (831175)

  48. here is a nice article i found on the internet that puts together what is known abut Ted Cruz’s rabid boosterism of the vile John Roberts, whose unfortunate rise to power has been of such manifest detriment to our nation

    there’s lots of evidence but here’s what seems to be a fair summary of the facts

    Of course, it’s completely correct that Cruz didn’t nominate Roberts; Cruz was not president of the United States in 2005. But, as Cruz’s own email and op-ed make abundantly clear, he was a vocal and adoring booster of Roberts during his confirmation hearing process.

    happyfeet (831175)

  49. *about* Ted Cruz’s rabid boosterism of the vile John Roberts i mean

    happyfeet (831175)

  50. Do not worry about this at all. Remember the press loved mccain until he got the nomination. Once that happened they went after him with a vengeance. If/when Trump wins the nomination, the press will be sharpening their knives. After all, he is running as a republican. Can’t have one of them win.

    Jim (a9b7c7)


    Ted Cruz… here, honesty at its best…

    jrt for cruz (bc7456)


    This is a nice mention on Ted.

    jrt for cruz (bc7456)

  53. As said before,
    We all know that it takes a significant amount of work to get adequately informed on multiple issues,
    And too many people don’t know that because they still think they can believe the media,
    I think a lot of people look for one or two things important to them that seem clear enough, then try to ignore what they see as background noise
    Trump was willing to go for the obvious which no one else was doing, and then kept at it and refused to be intimidated by the press and PC

    That is it, little more. Trump fails when he tries to be more than he is,
    But it doesn’t matter, he has a following for what he did right

    The overwhelming majority do not want Trump, but the opposition to him is divided,
    I think the issue will be the SEC primary, who will gain support along with Trump and Cruz how much will Cruz get, who will be the last establishment running.

    MD not exactly in Philly (deca84)

  54. In light of what we’ve discovered about the late drumheller and murray, the mutineers that out right lied to at least one reporterbabout curveball.

    narciso (732bc0)

  55. I wouldn’t be surprised is there isn’t some reserve stockpile of yellowcake floating around out there

    narciso (732bc0)

  56. But the medici let me gun browbeat him, like he was in some Chinese prison camp.

    narciso (732bc0)

  57. The party pretends we never discovered the journalist and other grapevines, like those Schmidt and Wallace employed.

    narciso (732bc0)

  58. megyn, sorry autocorrect, she holds the notion that there were no wmds, even though she read the whole carlos slim’s series, about soldiers exposed to same,

    narciso (732bc0)

  59. Not only does Trump’s clothing brand lose to China and Mexico, but Trump would probably lose his shirt to a Democrat in a general election.

    Cruz Supporter (102c9a)

  60. perhaps you would be hardpressed to find any american textiles in one’s wardrobes, and what is the consequence of that. Similarly when homeland assistance, under leahy but also his holla counterpart went to small hamlets over metropolitan areas, whose fault was that?

    narciso (732bc0)

  61. yes, trump’s claim is indeed risible, back in the 70s, the Baathist regime, provided sanctuary to Carlos, and the PFLP, (the folks that blew up airliners) for 14 years of the Ayatollah’s exile, he was not touched in Karbala, while he persecuted the Da’wa, Abu Nidal, another guest, provided training for the Hezbollah doctor who tortured William Buckley,

    narciso (732bc0)

  62. it is not merely to be informed, you read the journal, the times, the dog trainer, yahoo, it’s like sifting through pyrite,

    narciso (732bc0)

  63. Trump is running exactly like a friend of Bill and democrat donor would run if his objective was to either win and keep the favor factory going or ensure another Clinton-friendly candidate wins.

    crazy (cde091)

  64. perhaps, but just possibly he sees the bangup job, mccain and romney did, and thinks he could do it better.

    narciso (732bc0)

  65. I salute ropelight for speaking up and criticizing Trump. I agree with ropelight that the audience was stacked in favor of Rubio and Bush (mostly) and against Trump and Cruz. Cruz got booed too, although not as much because he did not say things as outrageous as Trump did. I think ropelight would agree that what Trump said was worse.

    It may be that this is simply an example of Trump losing his composure in the face of adversity which Cruz was able to maintain his. But let’s not forget that Trump said in the past that George W. Bush should be impeached. So it’s not like the debate comments came out of nowhere. These are the sorts of things your New York pals say when you hang out with the New York values crowd.

    Trump simply doesn’t share our values.

    Patterico (251ae1)

  66. the fault lies with the top men, who invite democratic hacks like dickerson as referees, as much as those who take up his argument,

    narciso (732bc0)

  67. He sees it as the only way to keep Franz Joseph from trying to annex Slovenia, is more likely. He’s a f***ing loon. An empty chair would make a better President. Literally, and not by way of illustration or emphasis. As is “f***ing”, which has always been his chief pre-occupation.

    nk (dbc370)

  68. It was emotional incontinence on display.

    Colonel Haiku (bb3c31)

  69. Mexican water and eat gas station sushi before I ever vote for trump.

    mg (31009b) — 2/16/2016 @ 2:46 am

    We call that “runnin’ with the Devil” out here, mg.

    Colonel Haiku (bb3c31)

  70. flint water with a chipotle chaser,

    narciso (732bc0)

  71. I don’t think he does anything out of rage, but calculation, he sees how the last expedition has not worked out, we’re going as long as the second punic war with no end in sight,

    narciso (732bc0)

  72. Trump has repeatedly attacked Cruz for being a liar, dishonest, a cheat, etc. It’s happened enough that it’s widely known, which means Cruz can play the Reagan “There you go again …” card. I think it would work with the young and especially old people like me, who remember Reagan.

    DRJ (15874d)

  73. carrier moving over to mexico, from indiana, another seismic anomaly behind his rise,

    narciso (732bc0)

  74. “In 2005, Ted Cruz won the Van Orden v. Perry case in the United States Supreme Court, in which the SCOTUS, by a 5/4 vote, upheld the display of the Ten Commandments on a monument at the Texas State Capitol. How good a job did Cruz do?”

    – Beldar

    Your link says the case was argued by Greg Abbott. Not Cruz. Was Cruz involved in the briefing, or something?

    Leviticus (efada1)

  75. He was. In his book he says he encouraged Abbott to do the oral argument.

    Patterico (86c8ed)

  76. (Van Orden v. Perry, that is).

    Leviticus (efada1)

  77. Well, he apparently did an extremely good job at encouraging Abbott to do the oral argument. Kudos to him.

    Leviticus (efada1)

  78. Liviticus, did CS answer your question about previously commenting here using a different handle?

    ropelight (004224)

  79. Back in the 1970’s The International Ladies Garment Workers Union had TV ads running to a catchy tune: Look for the union label…. Catchy, clever, very “American”. I recall seeing that ad watching a football game with my father. He turned to me and said: “This means in ten years no clothes will be manufactured in America. These idiots will price our country out of he textile industry”. He was wrong, it took about fifteen years. Back then at the corner of Broad Street and Lehigh Ave. in Philly it was known as “Textile Row”. Building after building full of factories like Hickie Freeman, Botany 500, Stanford, Robert Hall and many more. Then the strikes began. Today those buildings have been empty for a couple decades like many other factories and businesses in the democrat enclave known as Philadelphia. But this was not the fault of the city rather the fault of the feds with OSHA, ADA and other regulations and unions with demands with no free market competition due to a closed shop. Now all the jobs are in Mexico, Thailand, Vietnam and China and those empty buildings are boarded up and only used for cell towers and bill boards.

    Government and unions seem unable to adapt to changing markets but business must to survive. So business seeks new areas to grow and develop and government and unions get white knuckles trying desperately to hold on to something old when something new is better.

    Soon because of crazy minimum wages, crazy regulations and nutty demands for paid child leave and healthcare business will once again develop new ideas to survive. They will automate. Robots don’t have babies, get minimum wage, go on vacation, take breaks, sue, pay taxes, get healthcare or demand equal bathrooms for handicapped trisexual snake worshipers.

    So yes, we would be hard pressed to find American made textiles in our wardrobes today and tomorrow we’ll be hard pressed to find many human workers at our businesses. Hell, I sat at the bar in TGI Friday’s yesterday and 14 of the 16 people sitting there were staring down at their phones. People no longer interact….even at bars. They may as well be served by robots, they’ve become them.

    Rev. Hoagie™® (f4eb27)

  80. Thank you for the links, jrt for cruz.

    DRJ (15874d)

  81. ropelight: No, CS did not. No matter, I was just curious. CS has been curiously silent since, though.

    Leviticus (efada1)

  82. Also (re: Beldar’s comment), let me backtrack a bit and acknowledge my certainty that plenty of heavy lifting was done in the briefing on Van Orden v. Perry. If that work was done by Cruz, more power to him. Of course, subtracting Cruz from the equation, many of us would look at the issuance of those two opinions side by side not as the product of any lawyer’s prowess so much as a shining example of the Supreme Court’s disdain for common sense.

    Leviticus (efada1)

  83. yet the new jobs have not measurably improved the standard of living in mexico, it would seem, so whole swath of the urban metropoli lie fallow, not unlike aleppo is now, ethnic and race fiefdoms, cannibalizing each other,

    narciso (732bc0)

  84. This is just my opinion. I’ve never seen anyone else say it, so take it with a grain of salt. I think Cruz and Abbott realized that it would be more effective for Abbott, a practicing Roman Catholic, to argue Van Orden. Both men are religious, but I think the current Supreme Court has fewer concerns about the intersection of religion and government with the Catholic religion than with evangelicals or Baptists.

    DRJ (15874d)

  85. The shmatte lofts did not improve the standard of living of the immigrant girls who worked in them when we had them in America, either. They were hellholes. If the unions drove them out of business, good for the unions.

    nk (dbc370)

  86. 84.yet the new jobs have not measurably improved the standard of living in mexico, it would seem,

    I don’t know about “measurably” but observably it has and Mexico’s not alone. The standard of living has improved in all those countries which is amazing considering they are all cesspools of corrupt crony capitalist collusion. (nice alliteration if I do say so myself). It’s not up to American standards but it beats eating corrugated cardboard like before. At least on my visits it seems better.

    Rev. Hoagie™® (f4eb27)

  87. well that may be the fox butterfield in the room,

    narciso (732bc0)

  88. There is a reason Texas won in the Supreme Court and Kentucky didn’t, and it isn’t because the Justices are stupid or impractical. It’s because the Texas lawyers — especially Cruz but also Abbott, who is very smart — knew how to frame the issue so the factual distinctions led to different results. Good lawyers do that.

    DRJ (15874d)

  89. Shmatte’s notwithstanding, immigrant girls got work, learned English, fed themselves, got a room in a three story walk-up and raised their families. So yeah, it did improve their standard. And if you refer to Triangle Shirtwaist that was a failing of government and new fire and occupancy codes were made. Had little to do with unions but even if it did like I was trying to say: there is a time for everything. The time for unions is over.

    Rev. Hoagie™® (f4eb27)

  90. “Paul Ryan: ‘We’re Not Going To Be Talking About Visa Caps”

    Ryan eventually admitted the he would not bring up legislation desired by the overwhelming majority of his Party: “We’re not going to be talking about visa caps in our agenda,” Ryan declared.

    As Breitbart News has previously documented, Ryan has devoted much of his career to preserving and expanding mass migration into the United States— a key part of the GOP establishment policy platform.

    Ryan’s admission is significant as it means that the leader of the Republican Party in Congress has all but announced that the will of GOP voters on the signature issue of 2016 will not be part of the Republican agenda.

    sound awake (04e750)

  91. TRUMP: Ted Cruz told your brother that he wanted John Roberts to be on the United States Supreme Court.

    That is the key allegation. That Cruz admired Roberts is irrelevant; what’s relevant is the claim that he’s in some way responsible for the nomination, and AFAIK it’s just not true.

    Milhouse (87c499)

  92. “This is just my opinion. I’ve never seen anyone else say it, so take it with a grain of salt. I think Cruz and Abbott realized that it would be more effective for Abbott, a practicing Roman Catholic, to argue Van Orden. Both men are religious, but I think the current Supreme Court has fewer concerns about the intersection of religion and government with the Catholic religion than with evangelicals or Baptists.”

    – DRJ

    By that same standard, do you think that the two Stars of David on the monument at issue in Van Orden played into the Court’s distinction as well? If the religious composition of the Court was the deciding difference between the two cases, how is that to Cruz’s credit?

    Leviticus (efada1)

  93. (If I understand your comment correctly, you’re saying that you think that the Texas lawyers had a practicing Catholic argue the case because four or five of the Justices were practicing Catholics. Am I reading you right?)

    Leviticus (efada1)

  94. Actually, I think Texas wanted a Catholic attorney to be there to answer any religious questions the Justices might ask, because a Catholic would give an answer with which the Justices might identify. I also think Abbott and Cruz know that any such questions and answers are (or should be) irrelevant to the case. Their point wasn’t to appeal to the Justices’ personal religious preferences. Their point was to remove or blunt the personal religious aspect so the focus remained the issues of the case.

    DRJ (15874d)

  95. Texas won because the Court agreed the monument wasn’t about religion. I think choosing Abbott to argue the case was a part of making that point.

    DRJ (15874d)

  96. The shmatte lofts did not improve the standard of living of the immigrant girls who worked in them when we had them in America, either. They were hellholes. If the unions drove them out of business, good for the unions.

    If they weren’t better than anything else available, nobody would have worked there. There was no slavery. People scrambled for those jobs because they did improve their standards of living.

    And the same is true in Mexico: these jobs do improve the standard of living of those who have them; of course they have only an indirect effect on the SOL of those who don’t have them, and there are a lot of people in Mexico, so it’s not surprising that the average SOL has improved only a little.

    Milhouse (87c499)

  97. I am having trouble seeing how this:

    “I think Texas wanted a Catholic attorney to be there to answer any religious questions the Justices might ask, because a Catholic would give an answer with which the Justices might identify.”

    Is consistent with this:

    “Their point wasn’t to appeal to the Justices’ personal religious preferences.”

    The question then turns to an interesting discussion about this:

    “any such questions and answers are (or should be) irrelevant to the case” (and this: “I also think Abbott and Cruz know that”).

    Leviticus (efada1)

  98. Sorry – I’m not trying to be nitpicky. This just looks like an interesting opportunity for a discussion about the Supreme Court, litigation, and reconciling seemingly inconsistent decisions.

    Leviticus (efada1)

  99. I ask because the only enterprise that is spoken about in mexico seems to be the drug business,
    of course manufacturing does entail a certain skill set.

    narciso (732bc0)

  100. That’s not nitpicky. I need to do a better job getting my point across.

    I think Abbott’s Catholicism made religion a non-issue because the Justices know a Catholic can separate legal analysis from religious issues. They know this because they have several fellow Justices who they know do it everyday. To win, Texas needed the Court to see this as a legal, not a religious, issue. Choosing Abbott made it more likely that any answer he gave (if he was asked about religion) would be viewed from that framework.

    DRJ (15874d)

  101. 91. QED, a win for the GOPe is a loss for America.

    DNF (755a85)

  102. narciso, drugs are the only business the media talks about. That’s because there’s no “blood” in mentioning Mexico is the largest exporter of Rubber Bath Tub Ducks or child-proof medicine caps.

    Rev. Hoagie™® (f4eb27)

  103. I don’t think that was a big part of the choice. Abbott is smart, very smart. He was the AG at the time, so it would be natural for him to argue some or all SC cases. I think Texas was one of the few States to even have an experienced SC litigator like Cruz. But my point is that Cruz and Abbott think about minor details like this. It impresses me.

    DRJ (15874d)

  104. the skill in the argument, have you heard the arguments re Miranda, the prosecutors were clearly outclassed, by whoever took up Ernesto’s cause,

    narciso (732bc0)

  105. Leviticus, whose minds where they trying to change? The target wasn’t the conservatives or the Catholics. The target was the liberals or those who often decided with the liberals, e.g., Kennedy, Breyer, Souter, Stevens and Ginsburg. They convinced Breyer and Kennedy, not because religion was involved in this case but despite it.

    DRJ (15874d)

  106. 104. Litvinenko, OTOH, is hardly above suspicion and likely killed himself smuggling Plutonium with insufficient care.

    DNF (755a85)

  107. yes, it’s an improbable turn, sasha went native like ellsberg, but the poin t was trump’s evolution, in a country which offers no intellectual property protection, no security of
    investment, it is foolish to deposit funds,

    narciso (732bc0)

  108. Litvinenko, OTOH, is hardly above suspicion and likely killed himself smuggling Plutonium with insufficient care.


    JP (bd5dd9)

  109. it seems volodya wanted to kill everyone in greater kensington, it doesn’t make sasha’s claims all that true,

    narciso (732bc0)

  110. “I think Abbott’s Catholicism made religion a non-issue because the Justices know a Catholic can separate legal analysis from religious issues. They know this because they have several fellow Justices who they know do it everyday.”

    – DRJ

    I see your point more clearly now, but find it similarly troubling (at an abstract level) as an exploitation of the Court’s confirmation bias – not necessarily regarding Catholicism, but regarding the Justices’ belief in their collective ability to separate their personal beliefs from their Constitutional analysis.

    Using a Catholic to appeal to justices’ belief that Catholics can separate legal analysis from religious issues (because they themselves and/or several of their colleagues are Catholic) hardly “makes religion a non-issue.”

    On the flip-side, do the Justices not know that a Baptist can separate legal analysis from religious issues simply because there are no Baptists on the Supreme Court? Can Buddhists separate legal analysis from religious issues? Any way you slice it, there seems to be some undue relevance granted to being Catholic, in this discussion.

    As a purely strategic matter, I can see why you would admire the attention to detail (by Abbott and Cruz) which would recognize this; but if we’re discussing judicial objectivity, it would seem to be an indictment.

    Leviticus (efada1)

  111. you do have a talent for missing the point, the easy argument would have been to argue religion, that would not have been the most effective though, as we saw in kentucky’s case,

    narciso (732bc0)

  112. Again, we find ourselves circling around the incestuous nature of the Supreme Court. A non-Catholic justice is more receptive to the appeal of a Catholic than a Baptist, simply because there are other Catholic Justices, but no Baptist Justices… and (the unspoken incestuous part) clearly the Catholic Justice is clear in his/her thinking because he/she went to the exact same schools and had the exact same career trajectory as I, the non-Catholic Justice?

    It’s not any particular religious belief in the Justices that I find disturbing, so much as the Court’s oft-demonstrated and overbearing faith in its own wisdom. It shouldn’t be so easy to appeal to the Court’s vanity.

    Leviticus (efada1)

  113. Cesare Borgia was a cardinal, and his baby-daddy was the Pope. The Catholics are very, very, very good at keeping religion separate from everything else.

    nk (dbc370)

  114. well back then, state and church were fused, as with the tudor example,

    narciso (732bc0)

  115. I meant genuine religion. Or personal religious conscience, if you wish. Devout in church and poisoning the brother-in-law.

    nk (dbc370)

  116. 118. Thank you.

    DNF (755a85)

  117. 110. Missed that.

    DNF (755a85)

  118. Via McCann at American Thinker:

    In 2013 American 15 year olds ranked 32nd among industrialized countries in math, 20th in reading and 24th in science. In 1988 this same age group ranked among the top 5-10 nations in the world in these same categories. Further, recent polls have indicated that as a byproduct of the radicalized education establishment, nearly 7 out of 10 between the ages of 18 and 29 would vote for an avowed socialist. Thus it is clear that the future of the country is on very shaky ground.

    Nothing remains wherewith to reclaim America, it must be reinstantiated by a future generation.

    DNF (755a85)

  119. Leviticus,
    Sometimes it seems like you just don’t like the way the world is and you want to change it,
    Rather than recognizing it is what it is and get on with it.
    As long as humans are on the supreme court, factors in addition to legal facts will always play a role, sometimes more than others.

    There are lots of things about the world that I don’t like, but my wishing things are different does no good.

    MD not exactly in Philly (deca84)

  120. I don’t see it that way, Leviticus. I’m an Anglican who was raised as an Episcopalian. Religion to me means the liturgy as much or more than the Ten Commandments. I have a feeling Catholics feel the same way but I doubt Baptists would agree, much less atheists.

    As MD said, it’s about one’s frame of reference. You need to grasp that if you want to practice in any court. You need to grasp it even more if you ever have a jury trial.

    DRJ (15874d)

  121. The usual GOP meltdown begins: Grassley won’t rule out Judiciary Committed hearings until he knows who the nominee is. These people are pathetically predictable.

    DRJ (15874d)

  122. Grassley won’t rule out Judiciary Committed hearings until he knows who the nominee is.

    Nor should he. It would look stupid, irresponsible, and obstructionist, and achieve nothing good. First let 0bama nominate someone; then react.

    Milhouse (87c499)

  123. I’m late responding to your questions, Leviticus (#75 & #83), and I agree with that which Patterico & DRJ have already said, but I’ll throw in my two cents.

    Yes, then-Texas Attorny General Greg Abbott, who was Ted Cruz’ boss and the State of Texas’ chief legal officer, argued Van Norden in the SCOTUS. You can hear or read the oral argument transcript here. He did a very fine job, prompting this at the end of his appearance:

    John Paul Stevens:

    General Abbott, I want to thank you for your argument and also for demonstrating that it’s not necessary to stand at the lectern in order to a fine job.

    Thank you.

    But the Solicitor General’s office did all the work in the lower courts, plus all the briefing on appeal, and it was a small office of exceptional lawyers working for Cruz. Cruz was personally involved in every brief that went out under their names, but — unsurprisingly for someone who’d himself clerked relatively recently for Chief Justice Rehnquist — Cruz was most thoroughly involved in the relatively few SCOTUS cases. Cruz had already personally argued, and won, the Fifth Circuit’s decision that Mr. Van Norden was trying to persuade the SCOTUS to overturn; that’s why Gov. Rick Perry is listed in the SCOTUS title as “Respondent” rather than “Petitioner.”

    The SG’s office prepared Abbott for the appearance, which was indeed a political decision, and one I don’t disagree with. But here’s the State’s Brief: As in all government legal filings of this sort, the AG is listed first (just like Loretta Lynch’s name is at the top of everything the DOJ files), but Cruz’ name is listed immediately to the right of that on the cover with the notation: “Counsel of record.” That means that it was Ted Cruz’ own professional credibility, and his own law license and ability to appear before the SCOTUS or any other court, that were on the line.

    I appeared before Gov. Abbott enough times when he was a state district court judge here in Houston that I know he would have been a quick study. I’d bet you dollars to donuts that if you congratulated him on this success at oral argument, he’d thank you, but he’d be the first to tell you: “But Ted Cruz actually won the case.”

    That said, I ought to have clarified in my comment that this was not one of Ted Cruz’ own successful oral arguments, merely one of his own successful Supreme Court victories.

    The SCOTUS’ Establishment Clause precedents are a hopeless muddle, and these two opinions announced on the same day made things worse, from the standpoint of clarity. Being able to finesse the right result out of this Court on the same day it was reaching a wrong one on the very same subject, though, is quite a feat of lawyering. It speaks well to Cruz’ abilities — in this case, his strategic decisions and personal performance in the lower courts, his involvement in the SCOTUS briefing, and his help rendered to then-AG Abbott in making the argument itself.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  124. The only time I’ve been counsel of record in a case that the United States Supreme Court agreed to hear, I delegated the oral argument to a younger colleague of mine.

    It was a court-appointed case in which my firm had been asked to represent the pro se appellant by the Fifth Circuit because the judges there thought the legal issues being decided were too important to resolve when only one side had a lawyer.

    Our brief in the Fifth Circuit, then, had been written by a brand-new law school graduate whom I’d asked to work with me on the case. I was official “counsel of record” because he didn’t have his bar exam results yet and wasn’t officially licensed. And the Fifth Circuit ruled in our favor just based on the briefs, without oral argument, so neither of us got to argue there.

    Our opponents, though — the Texas Attorney General’s office, in an era when there was not yet a strong and coherent Solicitor General’s office within the AG’s office — petitioned for certiorari, and to our surprise, it was granted. (Part of the reason for the surprise was that the Texas AG’s office wasn’t very good in handling this kind of appeal in the 1980s; we out-lawyered them relentlessly on these appointed appeals.)

    I very much wanted an opportunity to argue there, having argued in several lower appellate courts but never at Main Event. And my colleague was below the minimum age for admission to the SCOTUS bar.

    But I couldn’t do that to my colleague, and it would have ill-served our client and the SCOTUS for me to grab the case back. Instead, I petitioned for — and, without opposition from the State, got special permission for my colleague to be admitted to the SCOTUS bar as an exception to the minimum age rule. (That we were doing this pro bono, at the request of the Fifth Circuit, kinda paved the way for that courtesy, I suspect).

    And thus did my young colleague get to fly to Washington and argue before the Supreme Court, while I stayed home and rooted him on from a very far distance.

    Postscript: Roughly four months later, we got a one-line notice from the SCOTUS: “The State of Texas’ petition for certiorari previously granted by this Court on ___ is hereby dismissed based on the Court’s determination that certiorari was improvidently granted.”

    This is very rare. It amounts to the Supreme Court saying, “We’ve decided, after taking a close look, that this case really isn’t worth our time after all, and we’re sorry we bothered.”

    My colleague was poleaxed. This had been his chance to have his name as counsel of record in a clear victory in the SCOTUS! This result, though, left in place the Fifth Circuit’s ruling in our favor. So while we won, we didn’t get a written opinion saying that from the SCOTUS, and my young colleagues name would not appear in the collected opinions of the Supreme Court as published in the numbered and bound volumes of United States Reports. I tried to console him by saying that he had won so very convincingly that the Supreme Court wasn’t bothering to pretend that the case was even close. But he was, nevertheless, disappointed on a purely personal basis, as I would have been in his shoes.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  125. I love it when you tell law stories and talk about legal issues.

    DRJ (15874d)

  126. Thank you, my friend. Here’s the Fifth Circuit opinion, DRJ. You’d find aspects of the case interesting, I’ll bet. It arose out of Midland County, Texas.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  127. Z Man:

    The brewing revolt is due, in large part, to the fact that American politics has remained locked in amber. The one side dreams of new noble causes to which they endeavor to rally the masses. The other side wrings its hands and makes snarky comments about those crazy liberals. On the one side it is the politics of old women thinking they can still dine out on their looks. On the other side it is the politics of old men complaining about the kid’s music today.

    Sanders and Trump are not leaders of new political movements. Both are where they are because they are willing to put a finger in the chest of their respective party leaders. Neither man makes a great case for himself, but like those Muslim men wandering into Germany, threatening to collapse Europe, they correctly see that the old guard is a collection of yesterday men, unable to defend their position.

    The good thing about a resort to hope in the Millenials–they are free of accoutrement.

    DNF (755a85)

  128. Oh, and you can’t tell from the opinion, DRJ, but we didn’t represent the petitioner in the trial court, so I don’t blame Judge Bunton; and in the Fifth Circuit and then in the SCOTUS, we only briefed and argued the issues we thought were meritorious, which we won on. Our pro se client had made tons of other claims which we couldn’t argue with a straight face or an ethical basis, so we opted just to allow those issues to “stand on the petitioner’s pro se briefing,” which of course was all nonsense, and led to those claims being summarily dismissed, as they ought to have been.

    I’m also reminded, re-reading the opinion: There was a Fifth Circuit argument, but the lawyer who represented our side was neither me (I was unavailable, some sort of scheduling conflict, probably in trial) nor the lawyer who wrote the brief (who I think still hadn’t gotten his bar results when the argument was held), but rather another young first-year associate, who’s named with me in the opinion intro.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  129. “As MD said, it’s about one’s frame of reference. You need to grasp that if you want to practice in any court. You need to grasp it even more if you ever have a jury trial.”

    – DRJ

    You’re both being overly dismissive. I’m less concerned with decrying blatant appeals to the bias of arbitrary decisionmakers than in getting you guys to admit that Ted Cruz had no problem making one to the Supreme Court and they had no problem buying it.

    Leviticus (a8efb0)

  130. I do not understand your last comment.

    DRJ (15874d)

  131. Beldar-
    As does DRJ, I also enjoy your law history, you give insight to what happens between the lines.

    mg (31009b)

  132. I am not particularly shocked that people make blatant appeals to the bias of arbitrary decisionmakers.

    It seems that Ted Cruz and Greg Abbott made such an appeal to the Supreme Court.

    I think it’s important to acknowledge that they made such an appeal, and that the Court was receptive to it.

    Leviticus (efada1)

  133. I’m still not sure what your point is but I fear you are missing my point, Leviticus.

    I think what Cruz and Abbott did was remove bias. The goal was to show this monument was and is about history, not religion. If the Justices saw it as a religious monument, Texas would lose. Instead, Cruz and Abbott needed to do everything possible to avoid the religious arguments.

    For example, what if a Justice asked about the significance of the Ten Commandments monument from a religious standpoint? Unless there were polls and studies in the record, that calls for a subjective response by the attorney. It’s possible and even likely that Abbott’s response would be better for Texas on this issue. Isn’t it the attorney’s job to put forward the best argument by the best advocate?

    This is my perception of why Abbott may have been a better choice than Cruz, but I could be completely off-base. Either way, it’s a very minor aspect of the overall case. The heavy lifting was in framing the issue, developing the facts, and briefing the case for the courts. It seems like you see this is an issue of religious bigotry, and that surprises me. To me, thinking about and dealing with the impact of religion in a case does not make someone a bigot, whether you are a commenter or a Supreme Court attorney/Justice.

    DRJ (15874d)

  134. To put it more succintly, if Texas appealed to the religious beliefs of the Justices, Texas would have lost the case because the Court would have seen the monument as religious in nature. The whole point was to show it was not religious.

    Some people who visit the Capitol grounds and see this monument probably do see it as religious, but that isn’t and shouldn’t be the test. We should protect all views but we don’t let any one view have a veto.

    DRJ (15874d)

  135. Beldar,

    I enjoyed the link! Thank you.

    DRJ (15874d)

  136. I don’t see this as an issue of religious bigotry. I see it as a tactical appeal to confirmation bias.

    “Let’s have the Catholic argue that he’s perfectly capable of separating religion from history, because the Justices are Catholic and believe they are perfectly capable of separating religion from history. If we use the Baptist, they might not trust him as intuitively, because what they trust intuitively is themselves and none of them are Baptists.”

    I’m not making an argument about an appeal to the religious belief of the Justices; I’m making an argument about an appeal to the self-belief of the Justices.

    That’s not the removal of bias, that’s the deliberating targeting of a very specific, very insidious bias.

    Leviticus (efada1)

  137. First Amendment jurisprudence is not normal jurisprudence. The Court makes it up as it goes along.

    Consider, also, that there are bass reliefs of Moses and Mohamed on the Supreme Court building. Maybe the Justices didn’t want to re-decorate that term. 😉

    nk (dbc370)

  138. “First Amendment jurisprudence is not normal jurisprudence. The Court makes it up as it goes along.”

    – nk

    I would say that First Amendment jurisprudence is normal jurisprudence, in that regard – but yeah, that’s mostly what I’m getting at.

    Leviticus (efada1)

  139. Let me get this straight: Cruz and Abbott objectively assessed that their case required that the monuments on the Texas Capitol grounds were based on history, not religion. They carefully gathered evidence that demonstrated this assertion, and they intentionally and impartially built their case in a way that convinced judges at every level. They also may have considered which attorney would make the best advocate to demonstrate that case.

    You call that confirmation bias. I disagree with your interpretation of confirmation bias and the law. If there is confirmation bias here, I think it’s by you.

    DRJ (15874d)

  140. Like nk, I also think the Justices realized the Supreme Court has religious symbols that are part of the history of the Court. They may have been thinking about when they decided this case. Is that confirmation bias or is that the right result?

    DRJ (15874d)

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