A great line from George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley got some play this week on talk radio: “Barack Obama is really the President Richard Nixon always wanted to be.”
It came, on this past Tuesday’s (June 3) Hannity on FNC, in the wake of President Obama once more ignoring the law when he freed detainees at Guantanamo without giving 30-day notice to congressional intelligence committees.
Separately, left-leaning law professor Jonathan Turley warned a Congressional committee on Wednesday that President Obama's extensive use of executive orders, executive actions, and unilateral regulatory moves threatens to enable the President, as Turley phrased it in a Fox News interview on Thursday, to "effectively become a government unto himself." If Turley had made his statement in 2006 or 2007 during the Iraq War, it would almost certainly have become a media obsession. Instead, as will be shown after the jump, Turley's testimony is being completely ignored by everyone except center-right news outlets and bloggers.
In their June 24 edition, the Washington Post published on its Outlook section front page a call by George Washington University professor Jonathan Turley to, well, pack the Supreme Court. Instead of nine justices, he envisions a high court with as many as 19 robed arbiters of the law.
The George Washington University public interest law professor claimed the current number of justices is just too small to have the final say on federal cases of landmark importance, such as Thursday's expected ruling on ObamaCare. It is part of the long temper tantrum the political left has been throwing over the assumed notion that the bill will be ruled unconstitutional.
Ed Schultz on Tuesday spent a great deal of time blaming the crisis in Egypt on rising food prices tying commodity inflation to former President George H.W. Bush and Wall Street speculators.
Not once in over fifteen minutes of air time were the name Bill Clinton or the two bills he signed into law that deregulated the financial services and commodity futures industries mentioned (videos follow with partial transcripts and commentary):
In the wake of Monday's ruling by a Florida judge to toss out ObamaCare as a result of the individual mandate, MSNBC's Lawrence O'Donnell asked liberal constitutional lawyer Jonathan Turley Tuesday if the Democrats made a mistake not writing a severability clause into the law.
Turley surprisingly answered, "It was a colossal mistake" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
In a report on Friday's CBS Early Show, correspondent John Blackstone described the fallout of a decision by California Judge Vaughn Walker to lift his stay on gay marriages after overturning Proposition 8: "Inside San Francisco City Hall dozens of same-sex couples lined up for marriage licenses, anticipating their wedding day." A headline on screen declared: "Save the Date."
Blackstone explained how gay couples were still upset that the stay would not be lifted until August 18: "Despite a celebration here, these advocates know this may be just a temporary opening. And it turned out it wasn't opened yet....Among the disappointed couples was one of those who filed the lawsuit challenging California's ban on same-sex marriage."
Finally taking note of critics of the initial Proposition 8 ruling and the lifting of the stay, Blackstone remarked: "The delay gives opponents time to appeal and a political issue." The only sound bite of a critic was that of Maggie Gallagher from the National Organization for Marriage: "The extreme nature of this decision is, in fact, going to impact the elections in 2010."
Blackstone then concluded his report this way: "Polls show a majority of Americans oppose same-sex marriage, but in California, where there were 18,000 such marriages two years ago, plenty of wedding plans are now being made for next week." He made no mention of the majority of Californians also being opposed.
During a segment on Friday’s “American Morning,” CNN correspondent Carol Costello used two liberal talking heads to cast doubt on the “judicial activist” label used by conservatives. Costello used three sound bites from Jonathan Turley of George Washington University Law School, who branded the use of the term as “perfectly juvenile,” and one from NPR’s Nina Totenberg to cast aspersions on conservatives who are concerned about judges legislating from the bench.
Costello’s report, which began 20 minutes into the 6 am Eastern hour of the CNN program, began by labeling the “judicial activist” term itself an “act” by politicians: “We hear politicians say it all the time, ‘we don't need an activist judge legislating from the bench.’ But what exactly does that mean? Critics roll their eyes when they hear, ‘we don't want an activist judge on the bench,’ when, in reality, that’s exactly what they want. I’m just saying, if that’s true, why not drop the act and tell voters what you really mean?” She further explained that it was a “buzzword that’s got staying power.”
Until yesterday, liberal law professor Jonathan Turley was generally hailed by the leftwing blogosphere for speaking "truth to power." However, now that same group is attacking Turley for speaking truth to MSNBC. Chris Matthews probably thought Turley would support Sonia Sotomayor's nomination right after it was announced. If so, he was in for a big surprise as you can see in this video clip. The same video also shows Turley making the same critique with David Shuster...and taking a swipe at justice Thurgood Marshall as well. First Turley blindsides Matthews with his completely unexpected criticism of Sotomayor:
On the Monday, March 30, The O’Reilly Factor, FNC host Bill O’Reilly slammed the New York Times for not reporting that an attorney in Spain, Gonzalo Boye, who is trying to have Bush administration members charged with war crimes in a Spanish court, himself has served eight years in prison for "collaborating with terrorists," referring to the Chile-based MIR, and the Spain-based ETA, both left-wing terrorist groups. During his "Talking Points Memo," O’Reilly related: "The action is being driven by a man named Gonzalo Boye, a radical left lawyer in Madrid. On Sunday, the New York Times reported Boye's beef, but did not report this: Boye served almost eight years in a Spanish prison for collaborating with terrorists. He was sentenced in 1996. Now, that seemed to be a mighty big omission by the New York Times, does it not?"
But on the same night’s Countdown show, MSNBC host Keith Olbermann informed his viewers of the possible indictment in Spain without mentioning Boye and his terrorist connections. Introducing a discussion with George Washington University Professor Jonathan Turley, Olbermann announced: "The first steps towards opening a criminal investigation against the Bush administration about torture is now under way, only it`s not by the U.S. government but by Spain. The New York Times reporting a Spanish court now building a case against six high-level Bush officials."
Regular viewers of "The Rachel Maddow Show" on MSNBC know they won't wait long to see frequent guest Jonathan Turley, a George Washington University law professor.
The affection between Maddow and Turley appears obvious, along the lines of what you'd expect between an academic and the graduate student who just happens to share his political views.
But Turley, a scholar of constitutional law, apparently doesn't believe the presumption of innocence applies to people whose opinions he doesn't share. Here was Turley on Maddow's show this past Monday, expressing his absolute belief that former Vice President Dick Cheney and other Bush officials are guilty of "war crimes" for sanctioning torture (the first two segments on the embedded video clip are of Turley's conversation with Maddow; the third segment is from her March 17 show, described later in the post) --
Now that Congress has recessed, and since the conventions aren’t for a couple of weeks, Thursday’s The Situation Room turned back to the "hot" issue of what many liberals are calling on congressional Democrats to do: arrest and lock-up Karl Rove for his failure to testify on the issue of the firing of U.S. attorneys in late 2006.
CNN correspondent Jim Acosta, as part of a report on this possible move by the Democrats, conducted a search for the supposed jail inside the U.S. Capitol. He also addressed the little-used power of the legislature to arrest and try government officials for contempt of Congress.
Acosta began by describing the liberals’ fantasy: "Just think, some on the Left say: Karl Rove and the Capitol slammer." During the segment, he interviewed George Washington University Law School professor Jonathan Turley (who links to Daily Kos and ProgressiveDem.com on his personal website and is lead counsel for convicted terror financier Sami al-Arian) and Associate Senate Historian Don Ritchie for the segment. When asked about contempt of Congress charges, Turley quipped, "The defendant is brought forth by the Sergeant-of-Arms, and in the case of Mr. Rove, it shouldn't be difficult. He's a consultant of Fox News a block away from the House floor."
On last night's "Verdict" with Dan Abrams, Dan and guest [Constitutional Law Professor] Jonathan Turley dissected Sunday's "60 Minutes" interview with U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. After dissenting with Scalia's claim that it was Al Gore "who brought it (election 2000) into the Florida courts," Turley then made the following claim:
Look, both sides were challenging this question. The funny thing of course is that Al Gore appears to have won Florida. And so, when Justice Scalia says he brought this trouble upon himself, that‘s not exactly fair since he apparently won the state, did not get credit for the state and ultimately lost the presidency over that failure.
You might think MSM support for the raid by Texas state authorities on the polygamist compound in Eldorado would be a slam dunk. After all, the religion involved is the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Not just Mormons: fundamentalists Mormons! Throw in patriarchy and allegations of exploitation of young women, and surely the feminist-inspired liberal media would be cheering on the bust.
But not so fast. Support this intervention, and perhaps a precedent is established for restrictions on unorthodox family arrangements of a more PC tint.
Take the comments of Jonathan Turley on today's Good Morning America. The George Washington law school professor went so far as to strongly suggest that the ban on polygamy is unconstitutional. And co-anchor Bill Weir was anything but unsympathetic to Turley's arguments.
Even liberal Bush administration critics are, as Hillary Clinton would say, "piling on" the Senator from New York and Democratic presidential candidate. George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley, a regular guest on "Countdown with Keith Olbermann," who suggested that President Bush "could well have committed a federal crime...30 times" with the NSA wiretapping program, offered harsh words for Senator Clinton on the November 6 "Fox and Friends."
Turley opined that the Clintons "seem to want" documents being released "at a glacial pace." Turley noted that "it’s not just health care stuff" but also "things like pardons, controversies involving Hillary Clinton’s brothers."