Tag Archives: Michael Avenatti

OA235: Corporations Are People, My Friend… Criminal People

Today’s Rapid Response episode takes a look at three breaking stories related to the White House:  (1) the recent ruling requiring Stormy Daniels to pay Trump’s attorneys’ fees; (2) the sentencing of Trump’s former lawyer, Michael Cohen; and (3) most importantly, the plea deal signed by American Media, Inc. — parent company to the National Enquirer — to cooperate with the Special Counsel’s Office.

We begin by revisiting the question of whether, in fact, Stormy Daniels is still a legal genius.  (Hint:  she is.)  But what does it mean that a court just ordered her to pay Trump nearly $300,000 — and why could it have been much, much worse?  Listen and find out.

After that, we check out Trump’s ex-“fixer” and the former Taxi King of New York, Michael Cohen, who was just sentenced to three years in prison.

Then it’s time for a fascinating look into a non-prosecution agreement reached between the Special Counsel’s Office and American Media, Inc. that tell us an awful lot about where Yodel Mountain is headed.

Finally, we end with an all new Thomas Takes The Bar Exam #105 on modifications to a contract.  As always, if you’d like to play along with us, just retweet our episode on Twitter or share it on Facebook along with your guess and the #TTTBE hashtag.  We’ll release the answer on next Tuesday’s episode along with our favorite entry!

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 the merits ruling defamation we referenced during the show; you can also check out Trump’s motion for attorneys’ fees, Avenatti’s (rather weak) opposition brief, and the court’s ruling directing Stormy to pay almost $300,000.
  2. And because it never ends, check out the mediation questionnaire filled out by Avenatti for their appeal to the 9th Circuit.
  3. You know you want to read the press release regarding Michael Cohen’s sentence; after that, you can check out the sentencing memoranda filed by the SCO’s office (“good cop”) as well as the brief filed by the SDNY (“bad cop”).
  4. Finally, this is the AMI agreeement as well as the DOJ guidelines on prosecuting corporations.
  5. Oh, and just for fun, here’s Jose Canseco’s audition to be Trump’s Chief of Staff.  #YesWeCanseco

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OA228: Jim Acosta, Sovereign Immunity & More!

Today’s Deep Dive Tuesday tackles the motion for preliminary injunction and underlying lawsuit brought by CNN and Jim Acosta against the Trump White House for revoking his press credentials.  You’ll get to hear about how Andrew Was Right… last Thursday (!)  As a bonus, you’ll get a listener question that segues into a mini-deep-dive on the “sovereign immunity” doctrine!

We begin, however, with some initial information about the still-sketchy situation surrounding Michael Avenatti and his arrest for domestic violence.

After that, it’s time to traipse through the CNN/Acosta lawsuit, which is still relevant today (even though the PI was, as Andrew predicted, granted).

Then, it’s time to answer a really interesting listener question about Oklahoma’s new anti-vax governor that winds up with a discussion of the sovereign immunity doctrine.  It’s a rabbit trail you’ll want to go down!

Finally, we end with the answer to Thomas Takes The Bar Exam #101 on SPACE LAW.  Find out Lando’s (and Thomas’s!) fate! 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. On Avenatti, you can see the “SurefireIntel” tweet here.
  2. You can read the Acosta/CNN underlying complaint, the accompanying memorandum of law supporting the Acosta TRO motion, and the Trump response.

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

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Don’t forget the OA Facebook Community!

For show-related questions, check out the Opening Arguments Wiki

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OA221: Elections Have Consequences, Florida Edition

Today’s Rapid Response Friday takes us back to a well-worn trope here at OA that we can’t emphasize enough in late October:  elections have consequences!  Specifically, we take a look at the importance of past and future elections in the pivotal swing state of Florida.

We begin, however, with a quick statement on the Trump administration’s apparently-leaked policy regarding trans people and some new developments.

After that, it’s time for the ever-popular Andrew Was Wrong segment, with two things that.. well, Andrew got wrong:  Whitewater and Paul Manafort (!)

Then it’s time for a deep dive into the Florida Judicial Nominating Commission and various constitutional amendments that are on the ballot this November, including one that takes a swipe at our favorite doctrine.

But that’s not all!  We move on to discuss 202 Democratic Presidential Candidate Michael Avenatti.  It’s not pretty.

Finally, we end with an all new Thomas Takes The Bar Exam #99 regarding criminal procedures.  After getting it wrong last week, Thomas needs to go 2-for-2 to get to the coveted “60% at the half” — can he do it?!??  You’ll have to listen and find out!  And, of course, if you’d like to play along with us, just retweet our episode on Twitter or share it on Facebook along with your guess and the #TTTBE hashtag.  We’ll release the answer on next Tuesday’s episode along with our favorite entry!

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. For more on the history  of jury sentencing at the state level, check out this 2011 law review article by Melissa Carrington that’s well worth a read.
  2. Click here to read the Tampa Bay Times article suggesting that the next court nominee is going to be a conservative regardless of the election; here for the official Florida government website describing how the JNC is selected; and here for an in-depth discussion of the history of the changes to that process.
  3. This is Detzner v. Anstead, the Florida Supreme Court decision we discussed regarding bundled amendments, and you can click here to read the text of the proposed Florida amendments.
  4. Click here to read the Grassley referral of Avenatti and Sweatnick to the DOJ.  And we broke down the Avenatti-Frank lawsuit first in OA Episode 181.

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

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Don’t forget the OA Facebook Community!

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And email us at openarguments@gmail.com



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OA220: Carter Page, Clownhorn

Today’s Rapid Response Tuesday takes an in-depth look at OA’s new favorite clownhorn, Carter Page, and his delightfully mad lawsuit against the Democratic National Committee, the law firm of Perkins Coie, and (I think) the Ancient Order of the Illuminati.  Strap in!

We begin with some good ol’-fashioned yodeling, with a roundup of stories with Yodel Mountain implications, including (1) the report that Mueller’s probe will conclude after the midterms; (2) Paulie Manafort’s latest motion; (3) the departure of White House counsel Don McGahn; and (4) some news regarding Michael Avenatti’s White House run in 2020.

Then — oh man — it’s time for a deep dive into Carter Page’s lawsuit regarding this September 23, 2016 Yahoo news story, written by esteemed reporter Michael Isikoff, that Mr. Page delightfully believes is defamatory.

After all that, we end with an all new Thomas Takes The Bar Exam #98 regarding constitutional law standards for a group home.  Remember to follow our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and like our Facebook Page so that you too can play along with #TTTBE!

Recent 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 Bloomberg News article suggesting that Mueller’s probe will conclude after the midterms.
  2. You can click here to read Judge Ellis’s order denying Manafort’s motion to appear in street clothes.
  3. This is the New York Times story on McGahn’s departure.
  4. Click here to read the FEC data on Michael Avenatti’s Fight PAC.
  5. This is the Sep. 23, 2016 Yahoo story
  6. This is the Carter Page lawsuit, which you absolutely must read.  Oh, and check out the (heavily redacted) FISA application showing that the FBI believes Page to have been the subject of targeted recruitment by the Russian government.
  7. This is the September 23, 2016 Isikoff story in Yahoo that Page believes is defamatory; we also referenced Page’s trip to Moscowthe terrorism statute, 18 U.S.C. § 2332b, and, of course, the fact that Page previously sued Yahoo over this exact same story and lost.

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

Follow us on Twitter:  @Openargs

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Don’t forget the OA Facebook Community!

For show-related questions, check out the Opening Arguments Wiki

And email us at openarguments@gmail.com



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OA181: Michael Avenatti is Never Going To Come On Our Show (#NotAllLawyers)

Today’s episode takes a deep dive into allegations of attorney misconduct.  We begin with following investigative reporting concerning the involuntary bankruptcy of the Eagan Avenatti firm, and discover some potentially disturbing facts about the lawyer who’s currently outfoxing the bad guys at every turn, Michael Avenatti.

After that, we discuss the Supreme Court’s recent unanimous per curiam decision in Azar v. Garza, the tragic case of the young woman denied her constitutional right to an abortion and subjected to harassment and “crisis pregnancy center” anti-abortion counseling until the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeal stepped in.  So… why did the Supreme Court just vacate that opinion?  It (potentially) has to do with attorney misconduct.  Oh, and this story also tells you everything you needed to know about price ceilings on underwear in the 1940s.  (Really!)

Then, we examine the biggest example of attorney misconduct at the moment — Donald Trump’s ever-fluctuating team of lawyers defending the indefensible.  Specifically, we take a look at the recently-leaked Dowd memorandum and its central claim that the President cannot obstruct justice with otherwise-legal behavior.  (That’s false.)

Finally, we end the answer to Thomas Takes The Bar Exam #79 regarding the conveyance of property to a church with conditions attached.  Remember to follow our Twitter feed (@Openargs) and like our Facebook Page so that you too can play along with #TTTBE!

Recent Appearances

If you can’t get enough of our analysis of the Masterpiece Cakeshop opinion, you can get even more on Episode 142 of Serious Inquiries Only (with more Andrew Seidel) and Episode 277 of The Scathing Atheist (with way more profanity).

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. This is the investigative piece on the Eagan Avenatti bankruptcy published by the Los Angeles Times.
  2. We last discussed Garza v. Hargan on Episode 165.  You can read the Supreme Court’s opinion (now captioned Azar v. Garza) here.  And if you want to read United States v. Munsingwear, Inc., 304 U.S. 36 (1950), you can do that too!
  3. Finally, if you can stomach it, here’s a link to the Dowd memo.

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

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OA178: Trump and the NFL

Join us for yet another Rapid Response Friday, in which we continue to evaluate claims on the left challenging the legality of the NFL’s policy regarding the national anthem, as well as discuss two items that are also of interest to Donald Trump.

We begin with a listener question we didn’t get to during our Q&A regarding the similarities and differences between the John Edwards affair and the Stormy Daniels affair.  Is this the kind of thing that should give Trump comfort?  (Hint:  no.)  Oh, and you might also learn something about an “Allen charge” if you follow us all the way down all our rabbit trails!

After that, we break down the “state action doctrine” while considering some liberal arguments making the rounds ostensibly challenging the legality or constitutionality of the NFL’s new rules.  Andrew still isn’t buying it!

Then, we trek back to Yodel Mountain to discuss the recent developments in Michael Cohen’s case in the Southern District of New York.  Was Andrew… wrong?  Listen and find out!

Finally, we end with an all new Thomas Takes The Bar Exam #78 regarding whether the jury can read a treatise on mill grinding.  It’s more interesting than it sounds, we promise!  If you’d like to play along , just retweet our episode on Twitter or share it on Facebook along with your guess.  We’ll release the answer on next Tuesday’s episode along with our favorite entry!

Recent 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. In the pre-show, we (don’t) discuss, among other things, the Trump administration’s breaking decisions on steel tariffs; for analysis, we refer you to our coverage of this issue back in Episode 162.
  2. This is the text of the 6-count John Edwards indictment, and we also quoted from the coverage of the acquittal by ABC News.
  3. We covered the “Paid Patriotism in the NFL” report in Episode 108; you can also read that report directly by clicking here.  Oh, and this is the Mike Florio PFT article, if you want to read more about how the NFL is in Jerry Jones’s pocket.
  4. If you like semi-old-timey Supreme Court decisions, you should definitely read Marsh v. Alabama, 326 U.S. 501 (1946) about First Amendment rights in a company town.  Once you’ve gotten through that, you can tackle Burton v. Wilmington Parking Authority, 365 U.S. 715 (1961) on the entanglement doctrine.
  5. This is the Ben Sachs Vox article we discussed.
  6. Your guide to Yodel Mountain includes this awesome NYT flowchart as well as this solid narrative article in Politico.
  7. Finally, this is the full text of Avenatti’s withdrawal of his pro hac vice motion.

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

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OA 176: It’s Summer (Zervos) Time!

It’s time for another Rapid Response Friday, which means we get to break down whether Donald Trump has to respond to the Summer Zervos defamation lawsuit.  (Hint:  yes)

We begin, however,  with a potential Stormy Setback.  What’s the deal with press reports of a $10 million judgment entered against Stormy Daniels’ attorney, Michael Avenatti?  Could it jeopardize the pending litigation?  Listen and find out!

After that, we break down the recent federal district court opinion in Knight First Amendment Institute v. Trump, which we covered when the case was first filed way back in Episode 77.  Are Donald Trump’s Tweets really a “protected forum” to which the First Amendment applies?  Listen and find out!

Then, we break down exactly how duplicitious Donald Trump’s personal lawyer has been regarding the Summer Zervos lawsuit.  It’s exactly as much as you’d expect!

Finally, we end with an all new Thomas Takes The Bar Exam #77 regarding the constitutional requirement to a trial by jury.  If you’d like to play along with our new Patreon perk, just retweet our episode on Twitter or share it on Facebook along with your guess.  We’ll release the answer on next Tuesday’s episode along with our favorite entry!

Recent Appearances

Andrew was just a guest on the Dumb All Over Podcast, episode 70.  Go check it out!

Show Notes & Links

  1. We discussed Michael Avenatti’s pro hac vice motion in Episode 174; you can also read the LA Times article about the bankruptcy judgment, as well as check out both the Avenatti involuntary bankruptcy petition and the Avenatti creditors list.
  2. We analyzed several cases, the most hilarious of which is Kohlmayer v. AMTRAK, 124 F.Supp.2d 877 (D.N.J. 2000).
  3. Trump’s Tweets were first discussed in Episode 77, along with the Davison v. Loudon County decision.
  4. You should read the Knight First Amendment Institute v. Trump decision.
  5. This is the Supreme Court’s decision in Clinton v. Jones, 520 U.S. 681 (1997), and if you want to read Marc Kasowitz’s deliberately misleading statements yourself, you can do so here.

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OA174: Is Michael Avenatti Fit To Practice Law In New York?

It’s time for another Rapid Response Friday, which means we get to break down Michael Avenatti’s response to the opposition to his motion to appear pro hac vice in the Southern District of New York — amongst many, many other issues!

We begin, however,  with a brief Andrew Lived Through The 1980s segment (formerly: Andrew Was Wrong), that segues into an update on the Panmunjom Declaration discussed in Episode 173.

After that, it’s time to go yodeling, where we break down Paul Manafort’s other criminal trial, Michael Avenatti’s ethical responsibilities regarding SARs,  Donald Trump’s financial disclosures, and (sadly) much, much more.

Finally, we end with an all new Thomas Takes The Bar Exam #76 regarding the admissibility of witness testimony.  If you’d like to play along with our new Patreon perk, just retweet our episode on Twitter or share it on Facebook along with your guess.  We’ll release the answer on next Tuesday’s episode along with our favorite entry!

Recent 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 is the text of the Panmunjom Declaration we first discussed in Episode 173.
  2. You can read Judge Jackson’s ruling denying Manafort’s Motion to Dismiss, and also Avenatti’s Response to Michael Cohen’s Opposition to his motion to appear pro hac vice.
  3. The primary case relied upon by Avenatti in his response is In re JPMorgan Chase Bank N.A., 799 F.3d 36 (1st Cir. 2015), which is directly on point.
  4. We’ve also uploaded a copy of Trump’s 2018 Financial Disclosures, which admits the Cohen payment.
  5. Finally, we highly recommend Ronan Farrow’s New Yorker reporting regarding the Cohen SARs.

Support us on Patreon at:  patreon.com/law

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Don’t forget the OA Facebook Community!

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