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 Fri, 06 Dec 2019 23:59:04 -0800 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 93de98469d0541db0ed0de4fd77a0a97 The Supreme Court and the Right to Keep and Bear Arms for 12/05/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/12/19/the-supreme-court-and-the-right-to-keep-and-bear-arms Thu, 05 Dec 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>In a 2008 case called District of Columbia v. Heller, and again in a 2010 case called McDonald v. City of Chicago, the Supreme Court interpreted the Second Amendment.</p> <p>That amendment was written, the court ruled in both cases, to mandate the obligation of the federal government, as well as cities and states, to recognize, respect and permit the exercise of the right to self-defense, using the same level of technology as might be used against someone in the home. Stated differently, the high court twice held in the past 11 years that the right to own and keep and &#8212; if necessary &#8212; to use a gun in the home is a personal pre-political right.<p>Updated: Thu Dec 05, 2019</p> 388ec7b0c4bdd2ade269c485d8575dd5 For What Should We Be Thankful? for 11/28/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/11/19/for-what-should-we-be-thankful-29cfb Thu, 28 Nov 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>What if the government's true goal is to perpetuate itself? What if the real levers of governmental power are pulled by agents and diplomats and by bureaucrats and central bankers behind the scenes? What if they stay in power no matter who is elected president or which political party controls either house of Congress?</p> <p>What if the frequent public displays of adversity between Republicans and Democrats are just a facade and a charade? What if both major political parties agree on the transcendental issues of our day?<p>Updated: Thu Nov 28, 2019</p> 25450d70d9e3d2624affe5a892b96590 The Dangers of an Imperial Presidency for 11/21/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/11/19/the-dangers-of-an-imperial-presidency Thu, 21 Nov 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Throughout the House of Representatives' impeachment inquiry, President Donald Trump has been pushing Attorney General William Barr to make a public statement on the president's behalf. He wants Barr to state publicly that even if the president did what congressional Democrats claim &#8212; conditioning the release of $391 million in vital military and financial aid to Ukraine upon the announcement of a Ukrainian government investigation of former Vice President Joe Biden &#8212; such behavior did not constitute impeachable offenses.</p> <p>The attorney general, to his credit, has declined to comply with the president's wishes. But he did stir the pot earlier this week with a partisan speech on the nature of the modern American presidency. That speech &#8212; by its assertion that liberals have neutered the presidency or shackled it in chains &#8212; must have been written in an alternate reality.<p>Updated: Thu Nov 21, 2019</p> 7bcac818fac3a5554eb57c7e59c3ec4e Is Ignorance of the Constitution Trump's Defense? for 11/14/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/11/19/is-ignorance-of-the-constitution-trumps-defense Thu, 14 Nov 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>"Well, when the president does it, that means that it is not illegal." &#8212; Richard M. Nixon (1913-1994)</p> <p>As public hearings on impeachment begin this week, we will see the case for and the case against impeaching President Donald Trump. The facts are largely undisputed, but each side has its version of them.<p>Updated: Thu Nov 14, 2019</p> 23d83c8c9d80b79db92c1332bad7e8bd Winston, I Need a Favor First for 11/07/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/11/19/winston-i-need-a-favor-first Thu, 07 Nov 2019 00:00:00 -0800 <p></p><p>Peggy Noonan, who wrote brilliant speeches for Ronald Reagan and now writes gifted columns for The Wall Street Journal, and whose friendship I have enjoyed for many years, recently put forth a hypothetical historical analogy that stopped me in my tracks. </p> <p>Let's look at some background before getting to it.<p>Updated: Thu Nov 07, 2019</p> 8b20a06df6ba40c73d98c16bff3d15ad Hiding in Plain Sight for 10/31/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/10/19/hiding-in-plain-sight Thu, 31 Oct 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p><i>Things are seldom what they seem,</i></p><i> </i><p><i>Skim milk masquerades as cream...</i><p>Updated: Thu Oct 31, 2019</p> 3fd97a11578f6a9bcff9dddb9ec2f022 The President and the Constitution (Again) for 10/24/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/10/19/the-president-and-the-constitution-again Thu, 24 Oct 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>In nearly three years in office, President Donald Trump has spent federal dollars not authorized by Congress, separated families and incarcerated children at the Texas/Mexico border in defiance of a federal court order, pulled 1,000 American troops out of Syria ignoring a commitment to allies and facilitating war against civilians, and sent 2,000 troops to Saudi Arabia without a congressional declaration of war.</p> <p>He has also criminally obstructed a Department of Justice investigation of himself but escaped prosecution because of the intercession of an attorney general more loyal to him than to the Constitution.<p>Updated: Thu Oct 24, 2019</p> e846567422c023cb29b34dd8ec604382 Is the Impeachment Process Fair? for 10/17/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/10/19/is-the-impeachment-process-fair Thu, 17 Oct 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Last week, the White House legal counsel wrote to congressional leaders stating President Donald Trump's legal views of the impeachment investigation now being conducted by the House of Representatives. The essence of Pat Cipollone's letter argued that the impeachment investigation is illegitimate, unconstitutional and unfair.</p> <p>The illegitimacy argument contended that since the House has yet to vote to authorize an investigation of the president, its committees lack subpoena power. The unconstitutional argument offered that since impeachment seeks to overturn a valid election, it is a thinly veiled coup and thus is in violation of the Constitution. And his unfairness argument states that the president is entitled to due process at every stage of the impeachment proceedings.<p>Updated: Thu Oct 17, 2019</p> c34e5d2df86be126a68ce82d1d1bc87f The Presidency and War Power for 10/10/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/10/19/the-presidency-and-war-power Thu, 10 Oct 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p>Readers of this column are familiar with the concept of the separation of powers, which James Madison crafted as integral to the Constitution. That concept mandates that Congress writes the laws, the president enforces them, the courts decide what they mean and interpret them, and the three branches of government don't step on each other's toes.</p> <p>The separation of powers also recognizes that the Constitution reposes unique authority in each branch and, at times, in each house of Congress. For example, only the Senate can confirm judges and ambassadors and ratify treaties. Only the House can impeach high-ranking executive branch officials and federal judges. Only Congress can declare war, and only the president can decide how to use the military to fight a declared war.</p> <p>The war powers are clearly articulated in the plain language of the Constitution itself &#8212; Congress declares and the president wages. Madison himself argued that if the president could both declare and wage wars, he'd not be a president but a prince. This distinction between declaring and waging was recognized for nearly 200 years, until Congress muddied the waters in 1973 by enacting the War Powers Resolution.<p>Updated: Thu Oct 10, 2019</p> 9bcd328ab42dfef55c6444dfe217813c Trump Attacks His Own Presidency for 10/03/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/10/19/trump-attacks-his-own-presidency Thu, 03 Oct 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>The House of Representatives has begun to gather evidence in an effort to determine if President Donald Trump has committed impeachable offenses. The Constitution defines an impeachable offense as "treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors." The president need not have committed a crime in order to be impeached, but he needs to have engaged in behavior that threatens the constitutional stability of the United States or the rule of law as we have come to know it.</p> <p>Has Trump committed any impeachable offenses?<p>Updated: Thu Oct 03, 2019</p> e562d3e8f2030068ec7cde711d20ce38 Brazen Acts of Corruption for 09/26/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/09/19/brazen-acts-of-corruption Thu, 26 Sep 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Last week, media outlets reported the existence of a whistleblower complaint filed with the inspector general of the intelligence community against President Donald Trump. The IC encompasses all civilian and military employees and contractors who work for the federal government gathering domestic and foreign intelligence.</p> <p>The inspector general &#8212; a position appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate &#8212; exists in all parts of the executive branch of the government, except for the White House, to examine and determine if officials are following the law.<p>Updated: Thu Sep 26, 2019</p> f224974219b8d30108cadf09c9f640cd Don't Smile for the Camera for 09/19/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/09/19/dont-smile-for-the-camera Thu, 19 Sep 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>A trial in Great Britain has just concluded with potentially dangerous implications for personal freedom here.</p> <p>Great Britain is currently the most watched country in the Western world &#8212; watched, that is, by its own police forces. In London alone, the police have erected more than 420,000 surveillance cameras in public places. That amounts to 48 cameras per 1,000 residents. What do the cameras capture? Everything done and seen in public.<p>Updated: Thu Sep 19, 2019</p> d5ccdbbe80bec680efebc72c2ed2c922 Who Cares What the Government Thinks? for 09/12/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/09/19/who-cares-what-the-government-thinks Thu, 12 Sep 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>In 1791, when Congressman James Madison was drafting the first 10 amendments to the Constitution &#8212; which would become known as the Bill of Rights &#8212; he insisted that the most prominent amendment among them restrain the government from interfering with the freedom of speech. After various versions of the First Amendment had been drafted and debated, the committee that he chaired settled on the iconic language: "Congress shall make no law ... abridging the freedom of speech."</p> <p>Madison insisted upon referring to speech as <i>the</i> freedom of speech, not for linguistic or stylistic reasons, but to reflect its pre-political existence. Stated differently, according to Madison &#8212; who drafted the Constitution as well as the Bill of Rights &#8212; because the freedom of speech pre-existed the government, it does not have its origins in government. The use of the article <i>the</i> reflects that pre-existence.<p>Updated: Thu Sep 12, 2019</p> 6d981fcbbc60188524d6c8666e8c5ea9 The Temptation of Tyranny for 09/05/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/09/19/the-temptation-of-tyranny Thu, 05 Sep 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Does the president of the United States have too much power?</p> <p>That question has been asked lately with respect to President Donald Trump's use of federal funds to construct 175 miles of sporadic walls along a portion of the 2,000-mile common border between Texas and Mexico. After Congress expressly declined to give him that money, Trump signed into law &#8212; rather than vetoed &#8212; the legislation that denied him the funds he sought and then spent the money anyway.<p>Updated: Thu Sep 05, 2019</p> 31e946e97aef9507f86b4ef9404e81e7 A Nonemergency of His Own Making for 08/29/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/08/19/a-nonemergency-of-his-own-making Thu, 29 Aug 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Late last week, President Donald Trump issued a tweet in which he purported to order American businesses to cease doing work with their employees and contract partners in China.</p> <p>He claimed he was exercising presidential powers pursuant to what he contended was the national emergency surrounding the trading relationship between the United States and China.<p>Updated: Thu Aug 29, 2019</p> e17bba6a5442dd2638abe26fbe7b2ea4 More Spying and Lying for 08/22/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/08/19/more-spying-and-lying Thu, 22 Aug 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>While most of us have been thinking about the end of summer and while the political class frets over the Democratic presidential debates and the aborted visit of two members of Congress to Israel, the Trump administration has quietly moved to extend and make permanent the government's authority to spy on all persons in America.</p> <p>The president, never at a loss for words, must have been asked by the intelligence community he once reviled not to address these matters in public.<p>Updated: Thu Aug 22, 2019</p> b0c583e227f619417972106ce5521de0 The Dangerous Urge To Do Something for 08/15/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/08/19/the-dangerous-urge-to-do-something Thu, 15 Aug 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>When tragedy strikes, as it did in two mass killings earlier this month, there is always the urge to pressure the government do <i>something</i>. Governments are animated by the belief that doing something &#8212; any demonstrable overt behavior &#8212; will show that they are in control. I understand the natural fears that good folks have that an El Paso or a Dayton episode might happen again, but doing something for the sake of appearance can be dangerous to personal liberty.</p> <p>When the Constitution was written, the idea of owning arms and keeping them in the home was widespread. The colonists had just defeated the armies of King George III. The colonial weapon of choice was the Kentucky long rifle, while British soldiers used their army-issued version of Brown Bessies. Each rifle had its advantages, but the Kentucky (it was actually a German design, perfected and manufactured in Pennsylvania) was able to strike a British soldier at 200 yards, a startlingly long distance at the time. The Bessies were good for only about 80 yards.<p>Updated: Thu Aug 15, 2019</p> 0eb05fb7a098238b875c530d10b2c929 A Few Words About Guns and Personal Liberty for 08/08/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/08/19/a-few-words-about-guns-and-personal-liberty Thu, 08 Aug 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>Last weekend's mass murders in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, have produced a flood of words about everything from gun control to mental illness to white nationalism. Most of those words have addressed the right to keep and bear arms as if it were a gift from the government. It isn't.</p> <p>The Supreme Court has twice ruled in the past 11 years that the right to keep and bear arms is an individual pre-political liberty. That is the highest category of liberty recognized in the law. It is akin to the freedoms of thought, speech and personality. That means that the court has recognized that the framers did not bestow this right upon us. Rather, they recognized its preexistence as an extension of our natural human right to self-defense and they forbade government &#8212; state and federal &#8212; from infringing upon it.<p>Updated: Thu Aug 08, 2019</p> b60ec5fdea9b362729ec82a2fe3e5878 The Longest Pleasure for 07/25/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/07/19/the-longest-pleasure Thu, 25 Jul 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>"Now hatred is by far the Longest pleasure;</p> <p>"Men love in haste, but they detest at leisure."<p>Updated: Thu Jul 25, 2019</p> 93ff3fcd4d3f1d3813b4452eebec47a6 The Limits of Free Speech for 07/18/2019 https://www.creators.com/read/judge-napolitano/07/19/the-limits-of-free-speech Thu, 18 Jul 2019 00:00:00 -0700 <p></p><p>During the past week, President Donald Trump excited two bitter public controversies by sending and publishing two highly inappropriate and offensively incendiary tweets.</p> <p>The first of these was aimed at four female members of Congress &#8212; each a person of color, and, as members of Congress, each an American citizen. Yet the president said they should go back to the countries from which they came. The second tweet was aimed at Google, which the president argued should be investigated for treason. <p>Updated: Thu Jul 18, 2019</p>