OA76: “I Hope” James Comey’s Senate Testimony Shows Obstruction of Justice

If it’s Friday, it’s a current events episode, and if it’s current events, we’re probably talking about Donald Trump.

We begin, however, with the second installment of a hopefully infrequent segment about stuff Andrew gets wrong.  In this case, it’s actually two things.  First, Andrew clarifies the terminology related to immunity, and second, Andrew admits to falling for a hoax (!)

In our main segment, we look at James Comey’s testimony before the Senate regarding his firing.  How far up Yodel Mountain does this take us?  Listen and find out!

After that, fan favorite Breakin’ Down the Law returns with an analysis of what’s going on with the Trump Administration’s appeal of Executive Order 13780, the so-called “Muslim Ban,” which we last discussed in Episode #51.

Finally, we end with a brand new (and tricky) Thomas Takes the Bar Exam question #27 about the admissibility of a question on cross-examination regarding the availability of insurance proceeds.  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 recent guest on Episode #84 of the Cellar Door Skeptics podcast; give it a listen.

Show Notes & Links

  1. We first discussed obstruction of justice in Episode #70, and analyzed the status of Executive Order 13780 in Episode #51.
  2. Snopes debunked the Berkeley Breathed letter here.
  3. The relevant obstruction statutes are 18 U.S.C § 1501 et seq.
  4. The two cases Andrew found that involve valid prosecutions for obstruction of justice where the defendant used the “I hope” construction in threatening a witness are U.S. v. Bedoy, 827 F.3d 495 (5th Cir. 2016) and U.S. v. McDonald, 521 F.3d 975 (8th Cir. 2008).
  5. This is the text of Executive Order 13780.

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