OA268: Article V Conventions (w/Lawrence Lessig)

Today’s episode revisits the topic Andrew discussed briefly in Episode 252:  Article V conventions convened for the purpose of proposing amendments to the Constitution.  Joining Andrew is Prof. Lawrence Lessig, perhaps the most vocal liberal proponent of such conventions.  Andrew, you may recall, was skeptical and concerned about the risks that such conventions could pose.

Join Thomas, Andrew, and Prof. Lessig for a special 70-minute very deep dive and see if either one changes their minds!

After that, it’s time for TTTBE #121 regarding executive orders.  As always, remember to follow our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and like our Facebook Page so that you too can play along with #TTTBE!

Appearances
Andrew was just a guest on Episode 464 of the Cognitive Dissonance podcast as their legal expert.  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. Here are the 14 states with Democratic legislatures and governors.
  2. This is the CNN/ORC poll Andrew referenced showing consistent high support for a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution.  And this is the Koch Brothers-funded ALEC initiative to convene Article V conventions.
  3. Click here to read Owings v. Speed, 18 U.S. 420 (1820), the first case Andrew discussed.
  4. Andrew also discussed Dyer v. Blair, 390 F.Supp. 1291 (N.D. Ill. 1975), and both lawyers talked about Coleman v. Miller, 307 U.S. 433 (1939) as the primary case for the political question doctrine.

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

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

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 email us at openarguments@gmail.com



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OA267: Originalism and the Eighth Amendment (Bucklew v. Precythe)

Today’s breaking news episode takes an in-depth look at Bucklew v. Precythe, a recent Supreme Court decision that lays bare the “originalist” view of the Eighth Amendment.  Is it as bad as you think it is?  (Yes.)

We begin, however, with a look at Texas v. U.S. and the recent news that the Trump administration “changed its mind” and “will no longer defend” the Affordable Care Act.  What does that mean?  Listen and find out!

Then, it’s time for our deep dive into Bucklew v. Precythe, the Supreme Court’s analysis of how the 8th Amendment applies in capital punishment cases.

After that, we go back to Yodel Mountain for some updates on the congressional investigations, including the Congressional request for Trump’s tax returns and an EPIC FOIA request.

And if all that isn’t enough for you, well, we end, as always, with a brand new Thomas Takes the Bar Exam Question #121 involving the constitutionality of Presidential executive orders.  As always, remember to follow our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and like our Facebook Page so that you too can play along with #TTTBE!

Appearances

Thomas was just a guest on the Cognitive Dissonance podcast; go check it out!  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. Wikipedia entry on sodium thiopental can be found here.
2. Glossip v. Gross (2015)
3. Supreme Court’s opinion in Bucklew v. Precythe (Apr. 1, 2019)
4. 8th Circuit’s opinion below in Bucklew
5. Congressional letter requesting Trump’s taxes
6. Bonus! Zuckerman amicus brief in the ACA litigation.

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

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

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 email us at openarguments@gmail.com



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OA266: Auer Deference & Florida Felons

Today’s classic, deep-dive Tuesday takes an in-depth look at two critical issues in the news:  first, the recent effort by the Republican governor and state legislature in Florida to undo the broadly popular Constitutional Amendment passed during the 2018 midterms to restore voting rights to felons who have completed their sentences, and second, the Supreme Court’s next assault on the “administrative state,” this time, by likely ending the doctrine of Auer deference.

We begin with an update about pending oral arguments before the Supreme Court, as well as a notice that this episode was bumped from last Tuesday to make way for our emergency Barr Summary episode.

Then, it’s time for a deep-dive into Florida, the process of citizen-driven ballot initiatives, and exactly what the state legislature intends to do to undermine the will of the public.

After that, it’s time for yet another deep dive, this time into Kisor v. Schulkin, which is currently pending before the Supreme Court, in which the petitioners have asked the Court to flat-out overrule yet another well-established conservative doctrine simply on the grounds that the Federalist Society doesn’t like it.

Then, as always, it’s time for the answer to Thomas Takes The Bar Exam #120 regarding a light touch on the bus.  As always, remember to follow our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and like our Facebook Page so that you too can play along with #TTTBE!

Appearances
Andrew was recently a guest on Episode 19 of the Glass Box podcast discussing this same subject (but with respect to Utah).  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.  In the pre-show, we discuss gerrymandering, which we last talked about in depth in Episode 251.
  2. We mentioned the Washington Post story about the DC City council overturning the $15/hr minimum wage initiative.
  3. This is the text of PCB CRJ 19-03, the Florida bill under consideration.  And here, by the way, is the link to Andrew Gillum’s voter registration initiative, Bring It Home Florida.
  4. We’ve never talked about Auer deference before, but we have discussed Chevron deference at great length, most recently in Episode 136.
  5. You can click here to read Auer v. Robbins, that 9-0 liberal decision authored by noted socialist Antonin Scalia.
  6. Finally, click here to read the underlying CAFC-Opinion in Kisor v. Schulkin.

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

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

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 email us at openarguments@gmail.com



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OA265: The Investigation is Over, But the Investigations Continue (feat. Randall Eliason)

Today’s breaking news episode contains a long interview with everyone’s favorite former prosecutor, Randall Eliason, who helps answer some nagging questions about what we do know about the Mueller Report (alongside all the things we don’t).

We begin, however, with a brief Andrew Was Right (about the Barr Summary and the news cycle!) and Wrong (about the specifics of the Assange indictment).

Then, it’s time for our main segment with Professor Eliason; you won’t want to miss it!

And if all that isn’t enough for you, well, we end, as always, with a brand new Thomas Takes the Bar Exam Question #120 involving touching a very sensitive woman on the bus.  As always, remember to follow our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and like our Facebook Page so that you too can play along with #TTTBE!

Appearances
Andrew was recently a guest on Episode 19 of the Glass Box podcast discussing Utah referendums, and Episode 188 of God Awful Movies (reviewing “Dead Man Rising”).  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/

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 email us at openarguments@gmail.com



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OA264: The Barr Summary of the Mueller Report

Today’s emergency, late-breaking episode breaks down the Barr Summary of the Mueller Report and gives you some advance warning that the narrative on the Mueller report is about to shift very quickly in the opposite direction.  Get ahead of the story by listening today!

Due to the length of the breakdown, we don’t have our regular segments today, but we do have (as always), the answer to Thomas Takes The Bar Exam #119 regarding contracts for the sale of wheat.  Can Thomas keep his streak alive?  Listen and find out!  And, as always, remember to follow our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and like our Facebook Page so that you too can play along with #TTTBE!

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. This is the Barr Summary of the Mueller Report.
2. Ken Dilanian’s tweet.
3. Glenn Greenwald’s tweet.
4. We discussed disaggregation of the investigations in Episode OA: 259.
5. Confirms the Senate Intelligence Committee report we talked about in Episode OA: 190.
6. Russian Lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya’s OPEN SDNY criminal trial as of 1/8/2019 for obstruction of justice.
7. Mueller’s NFL report is here.

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

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

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 email us at openarguments@gmail.com



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OA263: Nielsen v. Preap and Due Process Due Aliens

Today’s breaking news episode contains your guide to the hotly-debated Supreme Court decision in Nielsen v. Preap, regarding how and whether aliens can be detained without due process.  What does it all mean?  Listen and find out!

We begin, however, with a brief update on the Congressional Investigations we discussed in Episode 259 with the news that Hope Hicks will cooperate.  Listen to our past episode if you don’t realize how huge this is.

Then, we move on to some news regarding a recent order handed down by Judge Kollar-Kotelly in the District Court for the District of Columbia with respect to the trans ban.  We dive into the unique procedural issues giving rise to this order and tamp down on your enthusiasm that this may put the trans ban in jeopardy.

Then, it’s time for our main segment breaking down Nielsen v. Preap. We tell you exactly what this decision means along with the reasons why the Court reached the result it did.

But that’s not all!  After that, we have our weekly trip to Yodel Mountain with two items:  (1) an Andrew Was Right about the source of the National Enquirer‘s acquisition of compromising material about Jeff Bezos; and (2) a follow-up on the New York indictment of Paul Manafort.

And if all that isn’t enough for you, well, we end, as always, with a brand new Thomas Takes the Bar Exam Question #119 involving long-term contracts for the sale of wheat.  As always, remember to follow our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and like our Facebook Page so that you too can play along with #TTTBE!

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. First discussed trans ban back in Episode OA: 247
2. We were assisted by Alice Ashton – trans Arabic linguist who contributed to the Advocate article located here and by Deirdre Anne Hendrick.
3. Here is a link to Directive-Type Memorandum (DTM) 19-004.
4. Pre Show: Hicks to cooperate. This is HUGE!
5. 1/4 – DC Cir. Reversed and vacated the injunction.
6. 1/22 – Supreme Court lifted the stays in two of those cases. We covered it the next day on Episode OA: 247.
7. Next day, on 3/8, the government filed a notice and this is the Plaintiffs’ response.
8. Here is the link DC Circuit’s Opinions issued 3/8
9. Judge Kollar-Kotelly’s 3/19 Order
10. 3/20 Gov’ts Motion to Clarify
11. Nielsen v. Preap is linked Here
12. 8 U.S.C. § 1226(a) vs. (c) – 1952
13. Demore v. Kim, 538 US 510 – Supreme Court 2003
14. Wall Street Journal article on Becker/Bezos
15. CHN article on the problems with New York’s double jeopardy.

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

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

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 email us at openarguments@gmail.com



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OA262: Is Gideon v. Wainwright in Trouble??

Today’s episode is inspired by the 56th anniversary of Gideon v. Wainwright, one of the most famous and celebrated landmark Supreme Court cases that guarantees indigent defendants the right to a court-appointed lawyer.  Is it under attack from our right-wing Supreme Court?  (You bet it is.)

We begin with a quick update on the recent district court opinion in California v. Ross and what that means for the 2020 Census.

Then, it’s time for an Andrew Was Right segment a update on the New York appellate court’s ruling in the Summer Zervos lawsuit.  As it turns out, Donald Trump does have to respond to Summer Zervos’s lawsuit — just like Bill Clinton had to respond to Paula Jones’s.

Then it’s time for a terrifying deep dive into Clarence Thomas’s dissent in the Supreme Court’s recent decision in Garza v. Idaho.  What’s the case about, and why is Thomas using it as a vehicle to try and overturn one of the most basic and fundamental rights criminal defendants enjoy today?  Listen and (sadly) find out.

After all that, it’s time for a fun listener question about footballer Wayne Rooney and public obscenity laws.

Then, it’s time for the answer to Thomas Takes The Bar Exam #118.  Did Thomas get a dreaded real property question correct??  Listen and find out!  And, as always, remember to follow our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and like our Facebook Page so that you too can play along with #TTTBE!

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 recent district court opinion in California v. Ross.
  2. Check out the New York appellate court’s ruling in the Summer Zervos lawsuit.
  3. If you have the stomach for it, read Clarence Thomas’s dissent in the Supreme Court’s recent decision in Garza v. Idaho.
  4. In the question-and-answer section, we discussed this statute, Rooney’s arrest record, and Cohen v. California.

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

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

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 email us at openarguments@gmail.com



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OA261: Sentencing Paul Manafort

Today’s extra-long episode contains your guide to all of the developments involving Paul Manafort over the past week.  What does it all mean and what can we expect next?  Listen and find out!

We begin, however, with a brief update on Episode 247 now that the Department of Defense has issued a Directive-Type Memorandum (DTM 19-004) implementing the ban on transgender service in the military.  With the help of some friends of the show, we break down the most pressing issues on the near horizon.

Then, it’s time for All Things Manafort (TM), which sneakily includes a deep dive into exactly how the U.S. Federal Sentencing Guidelines came into effect, when they were mandatory, how they became advisory, and what the hell happened in the Eastern District of Virginia.

But that’s not all!  After that, we have a discussion on when sentences should run consecutively versus concurrently, and how that interacts with Judge Amy Berman Jackson’s sentencing decision in Manafort’s DC case.

AND we also have breaking news regarding new state charges brought against Manafort as soon as both federal sentences were handed down.

And if that’s not enough for you, well, we end, as always, with a brand new Thomas Takes the Bar Exam Question #118 that’s a dreaded real property question.  As always, remember to follow our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and like our Facebook Page so that you too can play along with #TTTBE!

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. First discussed trans ban back in Episode OA: 247
  2. We were assisted by Alice Ashton – trans Arabic linguist who contributed to the Advocate article located here and by Deirdre Anne Hendrick.
  3. Here is a link to Directive-Type Memorandum (DTM) 19-004.
  4. This is the Feb. 22, 2018 Mattis directive.
  5. Here are the DSM-5 guidelines on gender dysphoria
  6. We first discussed the Sentencing Guidelines in Episode OA: 162.
  7. The accompanying statute is 18 U.S.C. §3553.
  8. For a primer on “variances” versus downward departures, check out the Sentencing Commission guidelines.
  9. Judge Ellis transcript can be found here.
  10. Concurrent/consecutive is governed by 18 U.S.C. § 3554.
  11. Manafort’s NY State indictment involves Residential Mortgage Fraud 1st degree (4 counts) under Penal Law § 187.25 and Falsifying Business Records 1st Degree (8 counts) under §175.10.
  12. We discussed Gamble v. U.S. in Episode Episode OA: 215.

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

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

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 email us at openarguments@gmail.com



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OA260: Res Ipsa Loquitur

Today’s episode is inspired by a law student listener question about a recent Thomas Takes The Bar Exam hypothetical, and takes a deep dive into the wonderful and wacky world of res ipsa loquitur.   What does that even mean?  You’ll have to listen and find out!

We begin with a brief Andrew Was Wrong segment about Donald Trump and drone use, followed up by an Andrew Was Right segment about multiple states suing to block the implementation of Trump’s HHS regulations relating to Title X that we discussed in Episode 258.

Then it’s time for that deep dive into res ipsa loquitur that you didn’t know you wanted until now!

After all that, it’s time for some Bonus Tuesday Yodeling, in which we check in on Roger Stone’s “Motion to Clarify” that was denied by Judge Jackson and an update on the House Republicans’ hilariously misguided efforts to try and discredit Michael Cohen by pointing out that he sure seems to like to lie on behalf of his client.  You won’t want to miss it!

Then, it’s time for the answer to Thomas Takes The Bar Exam #117.  As always, remember to follow our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and like our Facebook Page so that you too can play along with #TTTBE!

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. Here’s a link to the Daily Beast article about Trump and drone strikes we teased in the opening segment.
  2. We’ve uploaded both Title X complaints:  the one filed by California as well as the multistate complaint.
  3. More on Title X:  click here for the actual law (42 U.S.C. § 300 et seq.); click here for the accompanying regulations (42 C.F.R. Part 59), and click here to read the new final rule promulgated by HHS regarding Title X.  And, of course, you can click here to read Rep. Cummings’s letter regarding the rule.
  4. This is Rep. Jordan’s “own goal” letter.
  5. Finally, here’s Judge Jackson’s Order regarding Roger Stone.

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

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

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 email us at openarguments@gmail.com



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OA259: Your Guide to the Congressional Investigations

Today’s extra-long episode contains your guide to the Congressional Investigations, and specifically the 81 document requests sent out by Rep. Jerry Nadler to various Trump-related individuals and entities in connection with the Democratic Congress’s larger investigation into corruption, ties with Russia, and general criminal behavior by the administration.  What does it all mean?  Who are the key players?  Listen and find out!

We begin, however, with a brief Andrew Was Right — Michael Cohen is producing drafts of his Congressional testimony, which may support his claim that Trump’s personal lawyer, Jay “ACLJ” Sekulow edited his testimony to suborn perjury.

Then, it’s time for an in-depth look at the various documents requested by Rep. Nadler.  What does it all mean?  We break down the four major “buckets” of inquiries and tell you about some familiar faces… and some surprising new ones.

After that, it’s time to take a look into recent developments in the Jeffrey Epstein case and correct some reporting as to whether his non-prosecution agreement has really been torn up by the courts.  (It hasn’t.)

We end, as always, with a brand new Thomas Takes the Bar Exam Question #117 about the use of university space for a debate on affirmative action.  As always, remember to follow our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and like our Facebook Page so that you too can play along with #TTTBE!

Appearances
Andrew was just a guest host on Episode 91 of the Skepticrat; go check it out!  And 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. Cohen to produce drafts of his testimony to Congress.
2. Congressional Investigations 162 documents served on 81 different people. Documents here:
3. Here’s a handy guide to who’s who in the investigation.
4. Here’s Hope Hicks’s documents request.
5. Here’s our tweet out to Rep. Nadler regarding Nader’s document requests:
6. Epstein. This is the text of the Crime Victims’ Rights Act of 2004, 18 U.S.C. § 3771.
7. Judge Marra’s ruling can be found here.

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

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

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 email us at openarguments@gmail.com



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