OA306: From Gavin Grimm to Jeffrey Epstein

Today’s episode combines some very, very good news regarding young trans advocate Gavin Grimm… to some rather less good news regarding a proposed rule at the Department of Labor… to some truly bizarre news and a plea for sanity given the ever-changing circumstances surrounding Jeffrey Epstein.

We begin with what looks like the close of a saga that began more than five years ago, when a Virginia public school board — at the instigation of bigots in the larger community — forced Gavin Grimm into “separate but hardly equal” accomodations in his high school. Today, at least, it looks like Grimm has finally won, as we break down a truly monumental decision from the Eastern District of Columbia.

Then, it’s time to look at proposed rulemaking from the Department of Labor that would modify one of the most important Executive Orders of all time: EO 11246, in which Lyndon Johnson required government contractors not to discriminate in their hiring practices. What does Trump propose to do to this EO? Listen and find out… and maybe someday you’ll worship at the Church of Chick-Fil-A. (Seriously!)

After that, it’s time to check in with the conspiracy theories that abound in the world of Jeffrey Epstein. Is there really a sinister motive to think that someone had Epstein killed? Will documents continue to come out that will shed light on what really happened? (Yes.)

We end, as always, with a brand new #T3BE… and yes, it’s another dreaded real property question. If you sell property you don’t own, and later come to own it, have you merely foolishly squandered your tomato juice? Listen and find out!

Appearances

None! If you’d like to have either of us as a guest on your show, drop us an email at openarguments@gmail.com.

Show Notes & Links

  1. Click here to read the Gavin Grimm opinion, and here to read Title IX, 20 U.S.C. § 1681.
  2. YOU SHOULD READ THE PROPOSED DOL RULE AND COMMENT HERE.
  3. You can also read the latest Washington Post story suggesting that Epstein’s suicide may have not been.
  4. We’ve uploaded ALL the Epstein docs! You can check out the legal documents: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8, Part 10, Part 11, Part 12, and Part 13.
  5. Wait, where are Parts 4 and 9? Oh, they’re over here!

-Support us on Patreon at: patreon.com/law

-Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

-Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/openargs/, and don’t forget the OA Facebook Community!

-For show-related questions, check out the Opening Arguments Wiki, which now has its own Twitter feed!  @oawiki

-And finally, remember that you can email us at openarguments@gmail.com!





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OA305: Live From New York!

Please enjoy the audio from our live show at the People’s Improv Theater in New York City, New York!

In addition to #T3BE, we have a deep dive on gun control and the recent Remington cert petition. Then, we have a lot of fun and we have nearly an hour of Q&A! Enjoy.. and come out and see us next time!

Appearances

None! If you’d like to have either of us as a guest on your show, drop us an email at openarguments@gmail.com.

Show Notes & Links

None!

-Support us on Patreon at: patreon.com/law

-Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

-Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/openargs/, and don’t forget the OA Facebook Community!

-For show-related questions, check out the Opening Arguments Wiki, which now has its own Twitter feed!  @oawiki

-And finally, remember that you can email us at openarguments@gmail.com!





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OA304: Chelsea Manning & More

Today’s pre-LIVE SHOW episode breaks down exactly what happened with the recent news story regarding Chelsea Manning being held in contempt of court. What’s going on? Listen and find out! Oh, and we also revisit Katy Perry, discuss how Thomas Was Right! regarding John Cage, and take a brief visit to Yodel Mountain. You won’t want to miss it!

We begin with a couple of updates to the Katy Perry lawsuit we discussed last episode. First, as it turns out, Thomas was prescient in thinking that someone might have copied John Cage’s famous 4’33” composition of silence and been sued over it. Does this mean Andrew Was Wrong? There’s only one way to know for sure. But that’s not all! We’ve also got a full discussion of the damages awarded to Flame, which gives you some insight into the profits of the song industry.

Then, it’s time for the main segment breaking down the recent court order regarding Chelsea Manning. If the grand jury has already issued its indictment of Julian Assange, how can she be kept in contempt? And what does this have to do with (almost) friend of the show G. Zachary Terwilliger? Listen and find out!

After that, it’s time for a brief trip to Yodel Mountain to discuss the recent filing by the Department of Justice in the Trump/Mazars lawsuit. Does this mean Bill Barr is corrupt? Yes, yes it does.

And finally, it’s time for #T3BE, this time involving a multi-structure contract in which one party simply gives up and goes home 1/3 of the way through. How does that person get paid? Can Thomas continue his improbable one-question winning streak??

Appearances

None! If you’d like to have either of us as a guest on your show, drop us an email at openarguments@gmail.com.

Show Notes & Links

  1. Click here to read the Billboard article about the 2002 Mike Batt/John Cage settlement, and here to read the Katy Perry jury verdict on damages. And don’t forget that you can refresh your recollection by reading all the Katy Perry pleadings, including (a) the lawsuit; (b) the jury verdict; (c) the proposed jury instructions; and (d) the proposed damages instructions.
  2. We first discussed Chelsea Manning and Julian Assange in Episode 269, and you can read all of the pleadings we discuss on the show including (a) the March 6, 2018 initial (1-count) grand jury indictment of Assange; (b) the May 23, 2019 superseding indictment (18 counts); (c) the G. Zachary Terwilliger application for an order compelling Manning to testify; (d) the Court’s order requiring Manning to testify; (e) Manning’s motion to quash; (f) the Court’s denial of Manning’s motion to quash and imposition of sanctions; and (g) the recent denial of Manning’s motion for reconsideration. (Phew!)
  3. Assange has been charged under 18 U.S.C. § 793, which we last discussed way back in Andrew’s Favorite Episode, #13, “Hillary Clinton’s Damned Emails,” which was so jammed-packed with information it had its own separate blog post!
  4. We discussed the Trump-Mazars lawsuit in detail in Episode 281, and you can read the DOJ’s amicus brief embedded here.

-Support us on Patreon at: patreon.com/law

-Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

-Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/openargs/, and don’t forget the OA Facebook Community!

-For show-related questions, check out the Opening Arguments Wiki, which now has its own Twitter feed!  @oawiki

-And finally, remember that you can email us at openarguments@gmail.com!





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OA303: Katy Perry & Facebook

Today’s episode checks in on the record-setting $5 billion settlement that Facebook reached with the Federal Trade Commission for, among other things, violating a prior consent order by enabling developers like Cambridge Analytica to access your data without your permission. Is this a good deal for American consumers? It’s complicated. Oh, and you also get more music law with Katy Perry, and so much more!

We begin with an update on the Senate’s last-ditch push to nominate more than a dozen new Trump nominees for lifetime appointments on the federal bench. And yes, despite widespread opposition, despite minimal credentials in many cases, and despite all of them having disqualifying right-wing ideologies… all were confirmed before the Senate decided to take a break. (Sorry for the bad news.)

Then, it’s time for the deep dive into the Facebook-FTC settlement, which does indeed impose the single largest penalty ever for a consumer protection violation. Learn why the Democratic minority at the FTC thought it wasn’t enough, and along the way you’ll learn a lot about the FTC.

After that, it’s time to revisit music law, this time with a jury verdict that Katy Perry violated the copyright of Christian rapper Flame. Andrew gives you the law, and Thomas gives you the music — you won’t want to miss this segment!

Then — as if that wasn’t enough — it’s time for the answer to a brand-new #T3BE involving beer, the Constitution, and the notions of justiciability and ripeness. It’s not quite as good as having a beer, but it’s still a good segment!

Appearances

None! If you’d like to have either of us as a guest on your show, drop us an email at openarguments@gmail.com.

Show Notes & Links

  1. Don’t forget that there are just 2 tickets remaining for Opening Arguments Live in New York on August 10, 2019! Click here to get your tickets before they’re gone!
  2. Click here to read the FTC-Facebook settlement; click here for the Slaughter dissent; and here for the Chopra dissent.
  3. And then don’t forget all the Katy Perry pleadings, including (a) the lawsuit; (b) the jury verdict; (c) the proposed jury instructions; and (d) the proposed damages instructions.

-Support us on Patreon at: patreon.com/law

-Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

-Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/openargs/, and don’t forget the OA Facebook Community!

-For show-related questions, check out the Opening Arguments Wiki, which now has its own Twitter feed!  @oawiki

-And finally, remember that you can email us at openarguments@gmail.com!





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OA302: #DemocracyRIP

Today’s episode is all about democracy — from the Russian efforts to de-legitimize a Clinton victory in 2016 with the #DemocracyRIP hashtag and media storm to those very same tactics being employed right now in 2019. Is a new California law requiring a presidential candidate to disclose his or her tax returns the answer? Listen and find out!

We begin with the release of the (Republican) Senate Intelligence Committee Report, Vol. I, which details the extent of the Russian government’s activities to infiltrate U.S. elections in 2016, including de-legitimatizing an expected Hillary Clinton victory with social media storming (and the #DemocracyRIP hashtag). It’s truly terrifying. And then we move from that report to something that looks to be in exactly the same vein after the second night of the Democratic primary debate. Coincidence or conspiracy? You decide!

After that, it’s time for a deep dive into California Bill SB27 which requires Presidential (and gubernatorial) candidates to disclose their tax returns. Find out what the media has mis-reported, what this bill actually does, why Andrew Was Wrong, and where the future is headed for mandatory disclosure requirements.

Then, we tackle another potential conspiracy theory — this time, that the California State Bar secretly leaked bar exam questions to certain elite law schools. Is it true? (Not really.)

After all that, it’s time for a brand new #T3BE on regulations regarding pasteurized beer. Will Thomas break his losing streak?

Appearances

None! If you’d like to have either of us as a guest on your show, drop us an email at openarguments@gmail.com.

Show Notes & Links

  1. Don’t forget that there are just 3 tickets remaining for Opening Arguments Live in New York on August 10, 2019! Click here to get your tickets before they’re gone!
  2. Here’s a link to the (heavily redacted) Vol. I of the Senate Intelligence Committee report on Russian interference in U.S. elections.
  3. This is the actual evidence related to #KamalaHarrisDestroyed, including (a) the Hill article and (b) the February 2nd, 2019 NBC News story.
  4. Click here to read California SB27.
  5. This is the ABA Journal article on the California bar, and this is the letter sent out to CA law school deans.

-Support us on Patreon at: patreon.com/law

-Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

-Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/openargs/, and don’t forget the OA Facebook Community!

-For show-related questions, check out the Opening Arguments Wiki, which now has its own Twitter feed!  @oawiki

-And finally, remember that you can email us at openarguments@gmail.com!





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OA301: The Good News Show!

Today’s episode focuses on a number of actual good developments in the news! From the second half of the Mueller testimony before the House Intelligence Committee, to a court’s issuance of an injunction blocking Trump’s illegal efforts to change the rules on asylum, it’s a (rare) week of good news! Oh — and there’s a brand new intro for your enjoyment as well!

We begin with an update on Mueller’s second round of testimony before the House Intelligence Committee, and answer some questions about whether Rep. Nadler can launch “an impeachment inquiry” without Nancy Pelosi’s approval.

Then, it’s time for some good news out of the courts, including a sweeping injunction handed down in Arkansas with respect to three laws that restrict and/or prohibit abortion, including Act 493, which purported to ban all abortions after 18 weeks. This is exactly what we predicted would happen at the district court level — and you can learn why this particular (159-page!) decision is particularly useful going forward.

But the good news doesn’t stop there! We also break down the Northern District of California’s injunction with respect to the joint DOJ/DHS rule regarding asylum that was rammed through without the appropriate notice-and-comment period last week.

Then, it’s time for a fun segment regarding disciplinary proceedings against everyone’s favorite crazy person, Larry Klayman!

Appearances

None! If you’d like to have either of us as a guest on your show, drop us an email at openarguments@gmail.com.

Show Notes & Links

  1. Don’t forget that there are just 10 tickets remaining for Opening Arguments Live in New York on August 10, 2019! Click here to get your tickets before they’re gone!
  2. Click here for Nadler’s 2017 impeachment inquiry.
  3. This is the must-read Dana Leigh Marks article in the Washington Post that we discuss on this show.
  4. Finally, click here to read the DC panel’s recommendations against crazy person Larry Klayman.

-Support us on Patreon at: patreon.com/law

-Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

-Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/openargs/, and don’t forget the OA Facebook Community!

-For show-related questions, check out the Opening Arguments Wiki, which now has its own Twitter feed!  @oawiki

-And finally, remember that you can email us at openarguments@gmail.com!





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OA300: Mueller Testifies!

It’s Mueller Time! Today’s episode drops early to give you our instant reaction to Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s testimony before the House Judiciary Committee. (This only covers the testimony before the House Judiciary Committee, not the subsequent testimony before the House Intelligence Committee.)

There are just 10 tickets remaining for Opening Arguments Live in New York on August 10, 2019! Click here to get your tickets before they’re gone!

We break down everything that transpired — the high points, the low points, and whether anything Moved The Noodle(TM). Specifically, we point out the factual and legal background underlying Mueller’s testimony, the 24 OLC memorandum that is the subject of Mueller’s declination decision, and the standards for indicting a person under 18 U.S.C. § 1512(c).

Plus, you’ll learn the totally misleading takes that right-wing sources are sure to run with, and we’ll equip you with everything you need to rebut those.

After a lengthy breakdown of the day’s events, we head to #T3BE, which involves a breach-of-contract claim against a bar exam tutor and a rather disappointed new lawyer.

Appearances

Andrew was a guest on the latest episode of the Registry Matters podcast discussing the Supreme Court, as well as the most recent episode of Mueller, She Wrote from the live show in Philadelphia talking.. well, pretty much everything!

Show Notes & Links

  1. Don’t forget that there are just 10 tickets remaining for Opening Arguments Live in New York on August 10, 2019! Click here to get your tickets before they’re gone!
  2. Click here to read the Mueller Report.
  3. Click here to read the OLC opinion.

-Support us on Patreon at: patreon.com/law

-Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

-Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/openargs/, and don’t forget the OA Facebook Community!

-For show-related questions, check out the Opening Arguments Wiki, which now has its own Twitter feed!  @oawiki

-And finally, remember that you can email us at openarguments@gmail.com!





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OA299: Executive v. Judiciary (Worcester v. Georgia)

Today’s episode takes a deep dive into an 1832 decision, Worcester v. Georgia, to try and answer the question of what happens when the executive and judicial branches come into conflict. Yes, there’s a lesson to be drawn to today’s Supreme Court-vs.-Donald Trump showdown over the citizenship question on the census.

We begin, however, with a pair of updates to previous shows, including “Joey Salads” and his nonsense “complaint” against AOC, and a listener email and update from our friend Seth Barrett Tillman regarding the status of the emoluments clauses litigation in both Maryland and DC. In fact, a late-breaking decision in the DC case led to a Patreon-only bonus extra on the topic!

Then, it’s time for the main event: breaking down the case that led to the famous aphorism, “Justice Marshall has made his decision, now let him enforce it.” As is usually the case with these deep dives, there isn’t an easy answer as to what the outcome will be when the executive and judiciary stare each other down, but we can always learn from history.

In the “C” segment, we check out an update from friend of the show Randall Eliason, who taunts us with an Andrew Was Wrong about the future of Bridgegate (from Episode 232). Learn what issue is in fact going before the Supreme Court and why Prof. Eliason thinks the Bridgegate conspirators are going to get off scot-free.

After all that, it’s time for #T3BE #135, in which Thomas once again manages to analyze a question absolutely perfectly… only to pick the wrong answer yet again. You won’t want to miss the full discussion.

Appearances

Andrew was a guest on the latest episode of the Registry Matters podcast discussing the Supreme Court, as well as the most recent episode of Mueller, She Wrote from the live show in Philadelphia talking.. well, pretty much everything!

Show Notes & Links

  1. We last discussed the Emoluments Clauses litigation in Episode 297. and for more, check out our Patreon-only bonus extra on the topic!
  2. Here’s the full text of the 1832 Supreme Court decision in Worcester v. Georgia.
  3. We last discussed Bridgegate in Episode 232, and you can click here to read Prof. Eliason’s latest blog on the topic.

-Support us on Patreon at: patreon.com/law

-Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

-Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/openargs/, and don’t forget the OA Facebook Community!

-For show-related questions, check out the Opening Arguments Wiki, which now has its own Twitter feed!  @oawiki

-And finally, remember that you can email us at openarguments@gmail.com!





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OA298: Hope Hicks & Weaponized Ticks

Today’s episode tackles the recently-released trove of unredacted documents in the Southern District of New York in Michael Cohen’s case and explains why Hope Hicks might have been ensnared by America’s greatest legal mind, Stormy Daniels. Oh, and have you heard that the Congress ordered the DOJ to investigate… whether the military weaponized ticks and if so, whether those ticks were released against Americans? It’s a weird story that can’t possibly be true… can it?

We begin, however, with the resolution to last episode’s #T3BE (formerly #TTTBE) controversy regarding the definition and conditions required for assault. Learn the results of whether “hissing” constitutes a physical threat… and whether that even matters!

Then, it’s time for long trip up Yodel Mountain. We begin by discussing the… conclusion? of the citizenship question and Andrew lets you know what’s still to come in those cases. After that, it’s time to discuss the House’s resolution of criminal contempt against Bill Barr and Wilbur Ross, and what that likely means going forward. And while we’re still on Yodel Mountain… hey, how about those Michael Cohen docs? Now that the other cases have been concluded, the judge ordered the Cohen search warrants to be released in (mostly) unredacted form, and you won’t believe what they show.

After all that, it’s time for the segment you’ve all been waiting for: WEAPONIZED TICKS. This is a segment so powerful, you won’t believe it (and we won’t spoil it here in the show notes)!

And then it’s time for a new #T3BE involving the rules of evidence and an oral contract. Think you have what it takes to hang with Thomas? Play along online by sharing out this episode, using our new hashtag, #T3BE, and we will reward one winner with Never Ending Fame & Fortune (TM).

Appearances

Andrew was a guest on the latest episode of the Left at the Valley podcast discussing abortion, as well as the most recent episode of Mueller, She Wrote talking.. well, pretty much everything!

Show Notes & Links

  1. It’s not too late! Click here to get tickets for the Opening Arguments LIVE SHOW, live in New York City on August 10th.
  2. If you want to read the Cohen docs yourself, they’re linked here.

-Support us on Patreon at: patreon.com/law

-Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

-Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/openargs/, and don’t forget the OA Facebook Community!

-For show-related questions, check out the Opening Arguments Wiki, which now has its own Twitter feed!  @oawiki

-And finally, remember that you can email us at openarguments@gmail.com!





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OA297: Twitter, Emoluments & Labor Unions

Today’s episode features a grab-bag of stories that have been making the rounds, including the recent ruling out of the Second Circuit regarding Donald Trump’s use of Twitter, a setback for our buddy Brian Frosh’s efforts to enforce the Emoluments Clauses of the Constitution, and an update on the real-word consequences of the Janus v. AFSCME decision we decry so much around here.

We begin with the Second Circuit’s ruling in Knight First Amendment Inst. v. Trump, which established that a government official may convert a social media platform such as Twitter into a “limited use public forum,” from which he may not block users on the basis of the political content of their speech — i.e., viewpoint discrimination. Almost no one understands this decision; we’ll make sure you’re one of the lucky ones who do!

Then, it’s time for a breakdown of the 4th Circuit’s ruling in In re Trump, which directs the lower court to dismiss the lawsuit (and pending discovery) against Trump in the lawsuit brought by Maryland and D.C. alleging violations of the Foreign and Domestic Emoluments Clauses. Find out what this case is all about, whether the outcome is reasonable, and what’s next.

After that, it’s time for a quick look at the real-world implications of the Janus v. AFSCME decision allowing public-sector union employees to withhold a portion of their dues otherwise allocated for administrative duties under… some crazy right-wing theory that something something something, because Sam Alito knows diminishing the power of unions will hurt Democrats. But what else did that decision do? Listen and find out!

After all that, it’s time for the most controversial #TTTBE yet, in which we discover the answer to Thomas Takes The Bar Exam (regarding larceny and robbery) … or do we? You won’t want to miss this one!

Appearances

Andrew was a guest on the latest episode of the Left at the Valley podcast discussing abortion, as well as the most recent episode of Mueller, She Wrote talking.. well, pretty much everything!

Show Notes & Links

  1. Click here to read the Second Circuit’s ruling in Knight First Amendment Inst. v. Trump (the Twitter case), and here to check out the Fourth Circuit’s ruling in In Re Trump (the Emoluments case).
  2. We first covered the emoluments case way back in Episode 78, and we interviewed Seth Barrett Tillman for his unique take in Episode 35 and Episode 36.
  3. We learned that bad stuff was coming in the emoluments litigation in Episode 239 when the 4th Circuit issued a stay of all discovery; you can read that stay order here.
  4. Finally, click here to read the LA Progressive article on Mark Janus and his conservative activism.

-Support us on Patreon at: patreon.com/law

-Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

-Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/openargs/, and don’t forget the OA Facebook Community!

-For show-related questions, check out the Opening Arguments Wiki, which now has its own Twitter feed!  @oawiki

-And finally, remember that you can email us at openarguments@gmail.com!





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