OA90: Pardon Me? Yes, Donald Trump Can Pardon Himself

In today’s episode, Andrew definitively opines that the Presidential pardon power includes the right to self-pardon.

We begin, however, with “Andrew Was Wrong.”  This time, he was wrong about Thor Heyerdahl, but right about the fate of Ken Ham’s Ark Encounter.

In our main segment, the guys analyze the recent claims by Laurence Tribe, Richard Painter, and Norm Eisen that Donald Trump does not have the power to pardon himself and find it less than persuasive.

Next, Andrew briefly discusses the legality of Trump’s tweet regarding transgender individuals serving in the military.

Finally, we end with an all-new Thomas Takes the Bar Exam Question #34 about introducing a rape victim’s sexual history into evidence.  Remember that you can play along with #TTTBE by retweeting our episode Tweet along with your guess.  We’ll release the answer on next Tuesday’s episode along with our favorite entry!

Recent Appearances

Andrew’s talk before the Lehigh Valley Humanists is now up on YouTube.

Show Notes & Links

  1. We first discussed AIG’s Ark Encounter land sale in Opening Arguments episode #88.
  2. This is the press release from Answers in Genesis regarding their Ark Encounter fraud, and here is one news account of how the City suspended the tax breaks for the Ark Encounter and the subsequent revocation of the sale.
  3. This is the Tribe/Painter/Eisen article in the Washington Post arguing that Trump doesn’t have the power to pardon himself.
  4. Here is a link to the 1974 Lawton memo.
  5. This is a link to the Autobiography of Charles Biddle; you’ll want to turn to page 306-08 for the Aaron Burr story.
  6. This is “The Law as King and the King as Law” from the Hastings Law Quarterly 20:7.
  7. Schick v. Reed, 419 U.S. 256 (1974).
  8. Chisholm v. Georgia, 2 U.S. 419 (1793).
  9. Here is a link to Gov. Stevens’s self-pardon in 1856.
  10. This is a link to Mayor James G. Woodward’s self-pardon for public drunkenness in 1901.
  11. Finally, this is the Newsweek article referenced on the show that discusses self-pardons.

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OA89: The “W” is Silent – Powlitics & Mwedia with Northpod Law UK

Today’s show features an in-depth interview with Kirstin Beswick and Ben Knight of NorthPod Law UK, often referred to (by us) as the “Opening Arguments of England.”  Join all four of us as we discuss media, politics, Brexit, and maybe — just maybe — reasons for optimism about the future of politics.

Due to the length of the interview, we don’t have any other segments, but we do end, as always, with the answer to Thomas Take the Bar Exam Question #33 regarding reasonable suspicion to search an auto after a traffic stop.  Don’t forget to play along by following our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and/or our Facebook Page and quoting the Tweet or Facebook Post that announces this episode along with your guess and reason(s)!

Recent Appearances:

None!  Have us on your show!

Show Notes & Links

  1. You can check out NorthPod UK’s blog by clicking here.

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OA88: Noah’s Ark & How Private Is The Stuff You Do On Your Computer?

In today’s episode, we discuss a recent court case involving an individual’s expectation of privacy while browsing the Internet.

We begin, however, with the question so many of our listeners wanted to know:  Is it legal for Ken Ham to sell his Ark Encounter theme park to his own non-profit ministry in a presumed effort to evade taxes?

In our main segment, the guys break down a recent court case involving search & seizure over the internet.  Do you have an expectation of privacy for the stuff you do on your computer?  The answer will surprise you.

Next, Yodel Mountain returns with an in-depth examination of what it means to be a “thing of value.”

Finally, we end with an all-new Thomas Takes the Bar Exam Question #33 about search and seizure, coincidentally enough.   Remember that you can play along with #TTTBE by retweeting our episode Tweet along with your guess.  We’ll release the answer on next Tuesday’s episode along with our favorite entry!

Recent Appearances

None!  Schedule us to appear on your show!

Show Notes & Links

  1.  Here is the article from the Lexington (KY) Herald-Leader on the sale of the Ark Park land.
  2. This is a link to the U.S. v. Matish decision discussed during the main segment.
  3. The relevant election law statute is 52 U.S.C. § 30121, which prohibits a foreign national from giving any “thing of value” to a candidate for public office.
  4. The two cases Andrew discussed interpreting that phrase “thing of value” are U.S. v. Schwartz, 763 F. 2d 1054 (9th Cir. 1985) and U.S. v. Sun-Diamond Growers of California, 941 F. Supp. 1262 (D.D.C. 1996).

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OA87: Revenge Porn & Parol Evidence

For today’s show, we take a deep dive into the law of contracts, featuring the “parol evidence” rule.

First, however, we answer a question from special listener Lydia S. who wants to know all about Blac Chyna, Rob Kardashian, and “revenge porn.”  YOU asked for it!

In the main segment, Andrew and Thomas discuss what you can and can’t do to dispute a written contract.

Next, Garry Myers asks us about why law firms are all structured as partnerships.  Again, the answer might surprise you!.

Finally, we end with the answer to Thomas Take the Bar Exam Question #32 regarding 42 U.S.C. § 1983.  Listen and find out if Thomas makes it back to .500!   And don’t forget to play along by following our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and/or our Facebook Page and quoting the Tweet or Facebook Post that announces this episode along with your guess and reason(s)!

Recent Appearances:

None!  Have us on your show!

Show Notes & Links

  1. You can check out California’s “revenge porn” law,  Penal Code – PEN § 647(j)(4), by clicking here.
  2. And this is the Los Angeles Times article detailing Kamala Harris’s first successful prosecution under the law back when she was California’s Attorney General.

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OA86: If Donald Trump, Jr. Commits Treason, Is It A Mini-Yodel?

In today’s episode, we discuss the recent controversy over Donald Trump, Jr.’s contact with Russian officials during the 2016 election.

We begin, however, with a follow-up from Dave (and others) who asked us about doxxing.

In our main segment, the guys break the law of conspiracy to discuss whether Donald Trump Jr.’s conduct is potentially criminal.  (Spoiler:  Yes.)

Next, fan favorite segment “Are You A Cop?” returns with a question about taxation without representation.

Finally, we end with an all-new Thomas Takes the Bar Exam Question #32 about Section 1983 claims and acting under “color of law.”  Remember that you can play along with #TTTBE by retweeting our episode Tweet along with your guess.  We’ll release the answer on next Tuesday’s episode along with our favorite entry!

Recent Appearances

None!  But you can come join the guys at the Inciting Incident 100th Episode Live Spectacular in Carlisle, PA on July 14, 2017!  Get your tickets now!

Show Notes & Links

  1. You can read Sarah Jeong’s excellent article, “Stop Diluting the Defintion of Dox,” here.
  2. This is 18 U.S. Code § 371, the federal conspiracy statute.
  3. And here is a link to the Cockrum, Comer & Schoenberg complaint.

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OA85: More with Andrew Seidel on Trinity Lutheran & the First Amendment

For today’s show, we dive deeper into the Supreme Court’s recent decision in Trinity Lutheran v. Comer with guest lawyer Andrew Seidel from the Freedom From Religion Foundation.

First, however, we answer a question from Patron Christopher Arguin regarding cross-examination that was inspired by TTTBE #30.

In the main segment, Andrew and Andrew continue to discuss church-state separation and the First Amendment.

Next, our friend Seth Barrett Tillman provides us with an update on the CREW v. Trump lawsuit regarding emoluments.

Finally, we end with the answer to Thomas Take the Bar Exam Question #31 regarding the Statute of Frauds.  Listen and find out if Thomas’s improbable one-question winning streak will continue — and don’t forget to play along by following our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and/or our Facebook Page and quoting the Tweet or Facebook Post that announces this episode along with your guess and reason(s)!

Recent Appearances

None!  But this is your last chance to join the guys at the Inciting Incident 100th Episode Live Spectacular in Carlisle, PA on July 14, 2017!  Get your tickets now!

Show Notes & Links

  1. We first spoke with Andrew Seidel regarding Trinity Lutheran during Episode 82.
  2. Here is a link to the Trinity Lutheran v. Comer decision.
  3. We first discussed Trinity Lutheran during our three-part “You Be The Supreme Court” series; part 1 (Episode 14) is available here, part 2 is available here, and part 3 is available here.
  4. This is the letter that the Missouri Attorney General sent indicating that, post-election, Missouri would change its policy.
  5. Finally, please check out Andrew Seidel’s great work at the Freedom From Religion Foundation.

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OA84: #CNNBlackmail, John Oliver’s lawsuit, and more on Maajid Nawaz

In today’s episode, we discuss the recent controversy over CNN’s handling of a Redditor who posted a Trump meme online.  Is this really “blackmail” by CNN?

We begin, however, with a follow-up from Patron Joerg regarding UK laws on personal jurisdiction/long-arm and defamation.  Could Maajid Nawaz (whose potential lawsuit we discussed in Episode #83) really file against the SPLC in the UK after all?

In our main segment, the guys break down CNN’s conduct and see if it qualifies as blackmail, extortion, conspiracy to deprive an individual of his Constitutional rights, or any other criminal behavior.

Next, by great popular demand, we tackle Bob Murray’s lawsuit against John Oliver in connection with his report on “Last Week Tonight.”  You won’t be surprised by our evaluation of the merits, but you will enjoy reading the Complaint!

Finally, we end with an all-new Thomas Takes the Bar Exam Question #31 about the Statute of Frauds.  Remember that you can play along with #TTTBE by retweeting our episode Tweet along with your guess.  We’ll release the answer on next Tuesday’s episode along with our favorite entry!

Recent Appearances

None!  But you can come join the guys at the Inciting Incident 100th Episode Live Spectacular in Carlisle, PA on July 14, 2017!  Get your tickets now!

Show Notes & Links

  1. Here is a link to the 2013 UK Defamation Act.
  2. This is the 2010 SPEECH Act,  28 U.S.C. § 4102.
  3. And here is the SPLC’s report on Maajid Nawaz labelling him an “anti-Muslim extremist.”.
  4. This is 18 U.S.C. § 873, the federal blackmail statute.
  5. Here is a link to an informative Washington Post article about the CNN/HanAssholeSolo debacle.
  6. And here is a link to the Ben Shapiro opinion piece in the National Review.
  7. This is a link to the lawsuit filed by Murray against Oliver, which is a delightful read.
  8. This link contains the original Oliver segment about Murray, which is definitely worth watching.

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OA83: Law of the Fourth of July! (and Maajid Nawaz)

In this special holiday episode, Andrew and Thomas talk about fireworks law across the U.S.  Where can you go for a cherry-bombin’ good time?  Listen and find out!

First, however, we take a look at Maajid Nawaz’s threatened lawsuit against the SPLC.  In the main segment, Andrew and Thomas figure out the best place to set off bottle rockets.  And after that, Andrew tackles another question from the patron-only Q&A mailbag.

Finally, we end with the answer to Thomas (and Andrew Seidel) Take the Bar Exam Question #30 regarding cross-examination.  Will Thomas and the practicing lawyer get it wrong?   Listen and find out, and don’t forget to play along by following our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and/or our Facebook Page and quoting the Tweet or Facebook Post that announces this episode along with your guess and reason(s)!

Recent Appearances

Andrew was a guest on Episode 14 of Habeas Humor, cracking lawyer-themed “yo mama” jokes.  Check it out!

Show Notes & Links

  1. This is the SPLC’s report on Maajid Nawaz labelling him an “anti-Muslim extremist.”

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/openargs/

And email us at openarguments@gmail.com

 

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OA82: Trinity Lutheran, Trump’s Executive Order & More (w/guest Andrew Seidel)

For today’s show, we break down the Supreme Court’s recent decision in Trinity Lutheran v. Comer with guest lawyer Andrew Seidel from the Freedom From Religion Foundation.

We begin, however, with a parenting question from Garrett Thomas Fox in our Super-Secret Patron-Only Q&A thread that didn’t get answered on our patron-only special.

In our main segment, Andrew Seidel helps explain what went wrong in the Trinity Lutheran case that Andrew confidently predicted would go 6-3 the other way.

After that, we tackle the Supreme Court’s recent decision staying the judgment in the 4th and 9th Circuits, which in turn had enjoined the enforcement of Executive Order 13780.  What does all of this mean?  Listen and find out!

Finally, we end with a brand new Thomas Takes the Bar Exam question #30 about cross-examination, in which our guest Andrew Seidel plays along!  Remember that TTTBE issues a new question every Friday, followed by the answer on next Tuesday’s show.  Don’t forget to play along by following our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and/or our Facebook Page and quoting the Tweet or Facebook Post that announces this episode along with your guess and reason(s)!

Recent Appearances

Andrew was a guest on Episode 14 of Habeas Humor, cracking lawyer-themed “yo mama” jokes.  Check it out!

Show Notes & Links

  1. Here is a link to the Trinity Lutheran v. Comer decision.
  2. We first discussed Trinity Lutheran during our three-part “You Be The Supreme Court” series; part 1 (Episode 14) is available here, part 2 is available here, and part 3 is available here.
  3. This is the letter that the Missouri Attorney General sent indicating that, post-election, Missouri would change its policy.
  4. Here is a link to the Supreme Court’s decision allowing most of EO 13780 to go into effect.
  5. Finally, please check out Andrew Seidel’s great work at the Freedom From Religion Foundation.

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

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And email us at openarguments@gmail.com



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OA81: 😒😜🐿️😎 Emoji Law with Denise Howell (also: Voting Rights, Draft Kings, and FanDuel)

In this episode, Thomas and Andrew interview Denise Howell from the This Week in Law podcast.

First, however, we take a look at the Supreme Court’s recent decision denying certiorari in an appeal of a Fourth Circuit case striking down various provisions of a North Carolina law that restricted voting rights.  There’s a lot of misinformation going on, so you’ll want to listen!

In the main segment, Denise Howell breaks down the “law of emojis” and a 🐿️ time is had by all.

After that, Breakin’ Down the Law returns with the recent FTC decision to try and block the FanDuel-Draft Kings merger.

Finally, we end with the answer to Thomas (and Denise) Take the Bar Exam Question #29  regarding assumption of risk.  Will Thomas beat the practicing lawyer?  Listen and find out, and don’t forget to play along by following our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and/or our Facebook Page and quoting the Tweet or Facebook Post that announces this episode along with your guess and reason(s)!

Recent Appearances

None.  But if you’re on the East Coast, you should check out Andrew’s speech to the Lehigh Valley Skeptics on “Skepticism and the Law” on July 2, 2017 at 11 am by clicking here.

Show Notes & Links

  1. This is the Supreme Court’s denial of certiorari, which is worth reading.
  2. The underlying case is NC State Conference of NAACP v. McCrory, 831 F. 3d 204 (4th Cir. 2016).
  3. The Supreme Court’s 2-line denial of the application to stay McCrory, 137 S.Ct. 27 (2016) is here.
  4. This is a link to the “American News X” (wrong) “hot take.”
  5. You can read Prof. Eric Goldman’s delightful law review article on emojis here.
  6. And Denise recommends falling down the Wikipedia rabbit hole by reading the history of emojis.
  7. This is the FTC complaint against Draft Kings and FanDuel.
  8. And here are a few links to articles by and about new FTC Acting Director of Bureau of Competition Tad Lipsky.

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/openargs/

And email us at openarguments@gmail.com

 

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