Judge Andrew P. Napolitano from Creators Syndicate https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano Creators Syndicate is an international syndication company that represents cartoonists and columnists of the highest caliber. en Thu, 24 May 2018 08:13:48 -0700 https://www.creators.com/ http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/tech/rss Judge Andrew P. Napolitano from Creators Syndicate https://cdn.creators.com/features/judge-andrew-p-napolitano-thumb.jpg https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano 12a93b78f0746bc9af47e5efb670f08b Can the President Lawfully Investigate His Investigators? for 05/24/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/05/18/can-the-president-lawfully-investigate-his-investigators Thu, 24 May 2018 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>This past weekend, President Donald Trump suggested that his presidential campaign may have been the victim of spies or moles who were FBI informants or undercover agents. He demanded an investigation to get to the bottom of the matter.</p> <p>At the same time that the president was fuming over this, Republican congressional leaders were fuming about the reluctance of senior officials at the Department of Justice and the FBI to turn over documents that might reveal political origins of the current criminal investigation of the president by special counsel Robert Mueller.<p>Updated: Thu May 24, 2018</p> 8af765f8206e25e4192051443698bd3f Bill Bradley, Call Your Bookie for 05/17/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/05/18/bill-bradley-call-your-bookie Thu, 17 May 2018 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>In 1992, Congress passed a statute authored by then-Sen. Bill Bradley of New Jersey, who was a former Princeton University and New York Knicks basketball superstar, prohibiting the states from authorizing sports betting. At that time, gambling in Atlantic City was flourishing, and notwithstanding one of its own senators' efforts to keep gambling away from competitive sports, the state of New Jersey wanted to duplicate Las Vegas' success with sports betting.</p> <p>When Bradley's legislation grandfathered the state of Nevada, legislators in New Jersey came up with an idea to get around the federal legislation that would permit Atlantic City casinos to compete with those in Las Vegas by repealing all laws about sports betting, thereby escaping the federal prohibition on "authorizing" sports betting. It would be up to the casinos to set up their own betting parlors for college and professional sports, and in so doing, they could increase their own bottom lines and thus the state's tax revenues.<p>Updated: Thu May 17, 2018</p> 4d437e45baeef3b3e2697775e1736a19 Prosecutors and the Rule of Law for 05/10/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/05/18/prosecutors-and-the-rule-of-law Thu, 10 May 2018 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Late last week, a federal judge in Alexandria, Virginia, questioned the authority of special counsel Robert Mueller to seek an indictment and pursue the prosecution of former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort for alleged financial crimes that, according to the indictment, began and ended well before Donald Trump ran for president. Mueller was appointed special counsel by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein because of allegations that Rosenstein accepted of a conspiracy by members of the Trump campaign to accept assistance from a foreign person, entity or government, which is a felony.</p> <p>The application by Manafort's lawyers before Judge T.S. Ellis III was actually a motion to dismiss the indictment against Manafort for want of jurisdiction. Stated differently, Manafort argued that Mueller exceeded the authority granted to him by the Department of Justice and thus he has no legal ability &#8212; jurisdiction &#8212; to prosecute Manafort. During the course of the oral argument on this motion, the judge opined that in his view, Mueller is only prosecuting Manafort for bank and tax fraud to squeeze him to testify against President Trump on matters that might be impeachable.<p>Updated: Thu May 10, 2018</p> 1c74a62034208ae82b865e675794e498 Troublesome Questions for President Trump for 05/03/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/05/18/troublesome-questions-for-president-trump Thu, 03 May 2018 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>In a startling revelation earlier this week, The New York Times published what it claims are 49 questions that special counsel Robert Mueller sent to lawyers for President Donald Trump. The questions are apparently a road map of inquiry that Mueller and his prosecutors and FBI agents plan to put to the president if the president agrees to sit down for an interview with them.</p> <p>I have been arguing for months that the president should not agree to an interview with Mueller. My reasons are fairly boilerplate: It is nearly impossible to talk prosecutors who are determined to seek an indictment into changing their minds. As well, the person being interviewed cannot possibly know as much about the case as the team doing the interview, and he will be prone to error.<p>Updated: Thu May 03, 2018</p> 4d60da77c989459f59149c9aee3e9549 War and the Separation of Powers for 04/26/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/04/18/war-and-the-separation-of-powers Thu, 26 Apr 2018 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>A popular way to begin the first day of class in constitutional law in many American law schools is to ask the students what sets the U.S. Constitution apart from all others. Usually, they answer that it's the clauses that guarantee the freedom of speech, privacy and due process.</p> <p>Yes, each of those guarantees &#8212; if upheld &#8212; is vital to restraining government, but the overarching and most important unique aspect of the Constitution is the separation of powers. The constitutions of many totalitarian countries pay lip service to free speech, privacy and due process, but none has the strict separation of powers that the U.S. does.<p>Updated: Thu Apr 26, 2018</p> e128b879bb9bc94f0b7b3e9e25d73192 President Trump and the Attorney-Client Privilege for 04/19/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/04/18/president-trump-and-the-attorney-client-privilege Thu, 19 Apr 2018 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>A few weeks ago, President Donald Trump was an outwardly happy man because of the utterance of one solitary word from the lips of special counsel Robert Mueller to one of Trump's lawyers. The word that thrilled the president and his legal team was "subject."</p> <p>It seems that Mueller and one of Trump's lawyers had been negotiating the terms under which the president would submit to an informal interrogation by Mueller and his team of prosecutors and FBI agents. Mueller's request for such an interview was not unusual.<p>Updated: Thu Apr 19, 2018</p> 98319696130262affe5dc482a14b4332 The Real Threat to Donald Trump for 04/12/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/04/18/the-real-threat-to-donald-trump Thu, 12 Apr 2018 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>In the midst of worrying about North Korea, Syria and Democrats taking control of the House of Representatives this fall, President Donald Trump is now worrying about a government assault on his own business, which targeted his own lawyer.</p> <p>Michael Cohen has been the personal lawyer for Trump and for the Trump Organization &#8212; the umbrella corporation through which Trump owns or manages nearly all entities that bear his name &#8212; for many years. Cohen is so closely connected to the Trump Organization that one of his two law offices is located on the 26th floor of Trump Tower, just a few doors from the corner office formerly occupied by Trump himself.<p>Updated: Thu Apr 12, 2018</p> c23426add743b4bfe290dc4917c7c713 What Is Robert Mueller Looking For? for 04/05/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/04/18/what-is-robert-mueller-looking-for Thu, 05 Apr 2018 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Robert Mueller is the special counsel appointed by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein in May 2017 to probe the nature and extent of Russian interference in the 2016 presidential campaign. The investigation began in October 2016 under President Barack Obama when the FBI took seriously the boast of Carter Page, one of candidate Donald Trump's foreign policy advisers, that he had worked for the Kremlin.</p> <p>The FBI also had transcripts of telephone conversations and copies of emails and text messages of Trump campaign personnel that had been supplied to it by British intelligence. Connecting the dots, the FBI persuaded a judge on the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to issue a search warrant for the surveillance of Page, an American.<p>Updated: Thu Apr 05, 2018</p> 91f238c42e29fdf76c41095b6be666e0 Hope for the Dead for 03/29/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/03/18/hope-for-the-dead-cecaa Thu, 29 Mar 2018 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>What is the connection between personal freedom and rising from the dead?</p> <p>When America was in its infancy and struggling to find a culture and frustrated at governance from Great Britain, the word most frequently uttered in speeches and pamphlets and editorials was not "safety" or "taxes" or "peace"; it was "freedom." Two acts of Parliament assaulted freedom and broke the bonds with the mother country irreparably.<p>Updated: Thu Mar 29, 2018</p> 8730f84a95e5d95755aee6b119bca477 March Madness, Washington-Style for 03/22/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/03/18/march-madness-washington-style Thu, 22 Mar 2018 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>For the past few days, the nation's media and political class have been fixated on the firing of the No. 2 person in the FBI, Deputy Director Andrew McCabe. McCabe became embroiled in the investigation of President Donald Trump because of his alleged approval of the use of a political dossier, written about Trump and paid for by the Democrats and not entirely substantiated, as a basis to secure a search warrant for surveillance of a former Trump campaign adviser who once boasted that he worked for the Kremlin at the same time that he was advising candidate Trump.</p> <p>The dossier itself and whatever was learned from the surveillance formed the basis for commencing the investigation of the Trump campaign's alleged ties to Russia by the Obama Department of Justice, which is now being run by special counsel Robert Mueller and has been expanded into other areas. The surveillance of the Trump campaign based on arguably flimsy evidence put McCabe into President Trump's crosshairs. Indeed, Trump attacked McCabe many times on social media and even rejoiced when Attorney General Jeff Sessions fired him at 10 p.m. last Friday, just 26 hours before his retirement was to have begun.<p>Updated: Thu Mar 22, 2018</p> 6a3855155a788a2b2a761c54356f7700 President Trump and the Freedom of Speech for 03/15/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/03/18/president-trump-and-the-freedom-of-speech Thu, 15 Mar 2018 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>When James Madison drafted the First Amendment &#8212; "Congress shall make no law ... abridging the freedom of speech" &#8212; he made sure to use the article "the" in front of the word "freedom." What seemed normal to him and superfluous to moderns was actually a profound signal that has resonated for 227 years. The signal was that because the freedom of speech existed before the government that was formed to protect it came into existence, it does not have its origins in government.</p> <p>The freedom of speech has its origins in our humanity. It is a natural right. It exists in the absence of government. By the exercise of normal human reasoning, all rational people are drawn to exercise this freedom. Madison understood this. He could have written, "Congress shall grant freedom of speech." He did not because that freedom is not Congress' to grant or to abridge.<p>Updated: Thu Mar 15, 2018</p> 14ddcbf28858b7489a956c3ebb9684e3 Let Him Arrest Me! for 03/08/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/03/18/let-him-arrest-me Thu, 08 Mar 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Late Monday afternoon, we were treated to a series of bizarre interviews on nearly every major cable television channel except Fox when a colorful character named Sam Nunberg, a former personal and political aide to Donald Trump, took to the airwaves to denounce a grand jury subpoena he received compelling the production of documents and live testimony.</p> <p>The grand jury is one of two summoned by special counsel Robert Mueller in his investigation of whether President Trump or his colleagues engaged in any criminal activity prior to or during the presidential campaign, or during his presidency.<p>Updated: Thu Mar 08, 2018</p> 4543ff35e2cb80e77d9fdfe0196a0a83 In Defense of the Right to Keep and Bear Arms for 03/01/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/02/18/in-defense-of-the-right-to-keep-and-bear-arms Thu, 01 Mar 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>The Ash Wednesday massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, seems to have broken more hearts than similar tragedies that preceded it. It was no more senseless than other American school shootings, but there is something about the innocence and bravery and eloquence of the youthful survivors that has touched the souls of Americans deeply.</p> <p>After burying their dead, the survivors have mobilized into a mighty political force that loosely seeks more laws to regulate the right to keep and bear arms. The young people, traumatized and terrified with memories of unspeakable horror that will not fade, somehow think that a person bent on murder will obey gun laws.<p>Updated: Thu Mar 01, 2018</p> 7fe4a55075b45b44816e91d3e50bd54d Mueller in Hot Pursuit for 02/22/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/02/18/mueller-in-hot-pursuit Thu, 22 Feb 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Last Friday, a federal grand jury sitting in Washington, D.C., indicted 13 Russian nationals and three Russian corporations for conspiracy and for using false instruments and computer hacking so as to influence the American presidential election in 2016. The indictment alleges a vast, organized and professional effort, funded by tens of millions of dollars, whereby Russian spies passed themselves off as Americans on the internet, on the telephone and even in person here in the U.S. to sow discord about Hillary Clinton and thereby assist in the election of Donald Trump.</p> <p>Though an indictment is a charge only, it presumably relies on hard evidence of a wide and deep Russian project &#8212; so wide and so deep that it could only have been approved and paid for by the Kremlin. President Trump's national security adviser, Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster, characterized the allegations in the indictment as "incontrovertible." The New York Times reported over the weekend that its Russian sources have now revealed that more than 1,000 people in Russia were involved for over three years.<p>Updated: Thu Feb 22, 2018</p> 1ea0fafc9736af9127c1fef9e5fc0da5 A Million Dollars a Minute for 02/15/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/02/18/a-million-dollars-a-minute Thu, 15 Feb 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Imagine you open the faucet of your kitchen sink expecting water and instead out comes cash. Now imagine that it comes out at the rate of $1 million a minute. You call your plumber, who thinks you're crazy. To get you off the phone, he opines that it is your sink and therefore must be your money. So you spend it wildly. Then you realize that the money wasn't yours and you owe it back.</p> <p>Now imagine that this happens every minute of every day for the next three years. At the end of the three years, you owe back more than $6 trillion. So you borrow $6 trillion to pay back the $6 trillion you owe.<p>Updated: Thu Feb 15, 2018</p> 374c2488b6594ae99e140362276b12fa It Can Happen Here for 02/08/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/02/18/it-can-happen-here Thu, 08 Feb 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>We remain embroiled in a debate over the nature and extent of our own government's spying on us. The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which was enacted in 1978 as a response to the unlawful government spying of the Watergate era, was a lawful means for the government to engage in foreign surveillance on U.S. soil, but it has morphed into unchecked government spying on ordinary Americans.</p> <p>The journey that domestic spying has taken in 40 years has been one long steady march of massive increase in size and scope. The federal government now employs more than 60,000 people to spy on all Americans, including the White House, the Pentagon, the federal courts and one another. As well, the National Security Agency and the intelligence arm of the FBI have 24/7 access to the computers of all telecoms and computer service providers in the U.S. And certain politicians have access to whatever the NSA and the FBI possess.<p>Updated: Thu Feb 08, 2018</p> 13c55dabaa7c4b1327660559ad45e6da Lying, Spying and Hiding for 02/01/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/01/18/lying-spying-and-hiding Thu, 01 Feb 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>I have argued for a few weeks now that House Intelligence Committee members have committed misconduct in office by concealing evidence of spying abuses by the National Security Agency and the FBI. They did this by sitting on a four-page memo that summarizes the abuse of raw intelligence data while Congress was debating a massive expansion of FISA.</p> <p>FISA is the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978, which was written to enable the federal government to spy on foreign agents here and abroad. Using absurd and paranoid logic, the secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, which only hears the government's lawyers, has morphed "foreign intelligence surveillance" into undifferentiated bulk surveillance of all Americans.<p>Updated: Thu Feb 01, 2018</p> fb94af378bff4617a94f7e014d8a593e A Conspiracy of Silence Assaults Privacy for 01/25/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/01/18/a-conspiracy-of-silence-assaults-privacy Thu, 25 Jan 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>During the past three weeks, Congress passed and President Donald Trump signed into law vast new powers for the NSA and the FBI to spy on innocent Americans and selectively to pass on to law enforcement the fruits of that spying.</p> <p>Those fruits can now lawfully include all fiber-optic data transmitted to or in the United States, such as digital recordings of all landline and mobile telephone calls and copies in real time of all text messages and emails and banking, medical and legal records electronically stored or transmitted.<p>Updated: Thu Jan 25, 2018</p> fcd8d69ee0d0a3d1504e8e7bb79ea917 Did Donald Trump Change His Mind on Domestic Spying? for 01/18/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/01/18/did-donald-trump-change-his-mind-on-domestic-spying Thu, 18 Jan 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Late last week, Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif., chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, repeated his public observations that members of the intelligence community &#8212; particularly the CIA, the NSA and the intelligence division of the FBI &#8212; are not trustworthy with the nation's intelligence secrets. Because he has a security clearance at the "top secret" level and knows how others who have access to secrets have used and abused them, his allegations are extraordinary.</p> <p>He pointed to the high-ranking members of the Obama administration who engaged in unmasking the names of some people whose communications had been captured by the country's domestic spies and the revelation of those names for political purposes. The most notable victim of this lawlessness is retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, President Donald Trump's former national security adviser, a transcript of whose surveilled conversation with then-Russian Ambassador to the United States Sergey Kislyak found its way into print in The Washington Post.<p>Updated: Thu Jan 18, 2018</p> 4198fe61cf98f67cc4a202334d9c7942 Congress Plotting to Cut a Hole in the 4th Amendment, Again for 01/11/2018 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/01/18/congress-plotting-to-cut-a-hole-in-the-4th-amendment-again Thu, 11 Jan 2018 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Hidden beneath the controversy stirred up last week by the publication of a book called "Fire and Fury," a highly critical insider's view of the Trump White House that the president has not only denounced on national television but also tried to prevent from being published and distributed, are the efforts of the Trump administration and congressional leadership to bypass the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution.</p> <p>Here is the back story.<p>Updated: Thu Jan 11, 2018</p>