legal

Federal judge orders Susan Rice, Ben Rhodes to answer written Benghazi questions in Clinton email lawsuit

A federal judge ruled Tuesday that former national security adviser Susan Rice and former deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes must answer written questions about the State Department’s response to the deadly 2012 terror attack in Benghazi, Libya, as part of an ongoing legal battle over whether Hillary Clinton sought to deliberately evade public record laws by using a private email server while secretary of state. U.S. District Judge Royce C. Lamberth denied a request by the conservative group Judicial Watch to make Rice and Rhodes sit for depositions, but agreed to have them answer written questions. He also agreed to Judicial Watch’s request to depose the State Department about the preparation of talking points for Rice, then President Barack Obama’s ambassador to the United Nations, ahead of appearances on political talk shows the Sunday following the attack. That deposition is part of Judicial Watch’s inquiry into whether the State Department acted in bad faith by not telling a court for months that they had asked in mid-2014 for missing emails to be returned. Rice initially claimed on several talk shows that the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi was triggered by protests over an anti-Islam video. The attack resulted in the deaths of four Americans, including U.S. Ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens. “Rice’s talking points and State’s understanding of the attack play an unavoidably central role in this case,” Lamberth wrote in a 16-page order. Lamberth added that “State’s role in the [talking] points’ content and development could shed light on Clinton’s motives for shielding her emails from [Freedom of Information Act] requesters or on State’s reluctance to search her emails.” Lamberth also allowed Judicial Watch to seek written answers from Bill Priestap, the former assistant director of the FBI’s Counterintelligence Division. Priestap, who supervised the bureau’s investigation into Clinton’s use of a private email server, retired from government service at the end of last year. “In a major victory for accountability, Judge Lamberth today authorized Judicial Watch to take discovery on whether the Clinton email system evaded FOIA and whether the Benghazi scandal was one reason for keeping Mrs. Clinton’s email secret,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “Today, Judicial Watch issued document requests and other discovery to the State Department about the Clinton email scandal. Next up, we will begin questioning key witnesses under oath.” The judge’s order amounts to approval of a discovery plan he ordered last month. In that ruling, Lamberth wrote that Clinton’s use of a private email account was “one of the gravest modern offenses to government transparency” and said the response of the State and Justice Departments “smacks of outrageous misconduct.” As part of the discovery, Judicial Watch can depose Jacob Sullivan, Clinton’s former senior adviser and deputy chief of staff, and Justin Cooper, a longtime Bill Clinton aide who helped arrange the setup of Hillary Clinton’s private email address and server. Judicial Watch said the discovery period will conclude within 120 days. A post-discovery hearing will then be held to determine whether additional witnesses, including Clinton and her former Chief of Staff Cheryl Mills, may be deposed.

Drip drip drip…  With each new day, we continue to learn more about Susan Rice’s and Hillary’s lies to we-the-people as they tried to cover up their poor decisions and incompetence that led to the tragedy in Benghazi.  Ben Rhodes was just a Dem political hack, a “useful idiot,” who just repeated the talking point lie that the riots were a result of a reaction to an online video (that nobody saw).  Kudos to Judicial Watch for pushing this issue and using the courts to get answers we should have had years ago.

Federal appeals court gives Trump a win on transgender military service

A federal appeals court gave President Trump a win Friday in a case defending the administration’s policy limiting certain transgender people from serving in the military. The federal circuit court in D.C. ruled the lower court erred in issuing an injunction against the president’s policy, saying the plan wasn’t a “blanket transgender ban.” The court said former Security of Defense James Mattis’ plan had been developed with the help from military officials and medical professionals. It focused on limiting the service of transgender people who suffer from gender dysphoria and refuse to serve under their biological sex. “Although today’s decision is not a final determination on the merits, we must recognize that the Mattis Plan plausibly relies upon the ‘considered professional judgment’ of ‘appropriate military officials,’” the court ruled in an unsigned opinion. There are still other injunctions in place that had been issued by lower courts against the administration’s policy, so the Justice Department has asked the Supreme Court to step in. Former Defense Secretary Ash Carter formally lifted the ban on transgendered citizens serving openly in the U.S. military last year. Under that policy initiated by Mr. Carter, transgendered individuals would have been able to enlist into the services by July. Those plans came to a halt when Mr. Trump announced plans to ban all transgender citizens from enlisting and separating all transgender troops currently in uniform. The announcement came as Mr. Mattis was in the midst of a six-month review of the Obama-era policy. Since the August announcement, federal courts have ruled the White House’s ban as unconstitutional while the transgender ban policy continues to face other challenges in the judiciary. Transgendered recruits were allowed to enlist beginning Jan. 1 after being subjected to a slew of physical, psychological and medical requirements before being considered for military service, pending the release of the military’s recommendations to the White House. The new standards for transgendered enlistment include certification that a recruit has been deemed “clinically stable” in their preferred sex for 18 months, and do not suffer from marked stress or impairment tied to their selected gender during certain scenarios tied to military service. The first transgender recruit officially signed up for the U.S. military last February, little over a month since the White House’s call for a ban on service for those citizens. The issue has become a cultural touchstone between proponents of the ban who argue the military has been repeatedly subjected to progressive social engineering efforts.

Which is exactly what has been happening ever since then-President Bill Clinton issued his “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy in the mid-’90s.  I was in the military then, and vividly remember the s_it storm that started…and it went downhill from there, especially under Obama.  What so many liberal Dems (who have never served in the military), and their equally ignorant accomplices in the dominantly liberal mainstream media down want to accept is…that nobody has a right to serve in the military.  There is no constitutional right to serve.  It’s a privilege.  Secondly..  The military discriminates all the time, and has been doing so for generations.  If you’re too tall, you can’t fly fighter jets.  If you’re too fat, you can’t join.  If you’re disabled and/or in a wheelchair, you can’t join.  And, on and on..  The mission of the U.S. military is to WIN wars.  Period!  Anything that undermines that mission, including all of the politically correct social engineering bs imposed on it by Democrat presidents and lawmakers, puts our troops’ lives in jeopardy, and undermines our ability to WIN.

Alan Dershowitz: Michael Cohen falsely conflates ‘wrong’ and ‘illegal’ while bashing Trump

Legal icon Alan Dershowitz says the latest version attorney Michael Cohen — the one who says his lying days are behind him — is obfuscating when it comes to President Trump. Mr. Cohen gave an interview to ABC’s George Stephanopoulos on Friday regarding the now-infamous hush money to porn actress Stormy Daniels and Playboy model Karen McDougal, but Mr. Dershowitz was not impressed. The Harvard Law School professor emeritus told Fox and Friends that a word like “wrong” in this case is erroneously being used as a synonym for “illegal.” “Reasonable people can disagree about whether it’s wrong to pay hush money to somebody to stop them from disclosing alleged improprieties sexually. Reasonable people can say that’s wrong or that’s right,” Mr. Dershowitz said. “It’s not illegal.” Mr. Cohen was sentenced to three years in prison this week for various crimes, including campaign-finance violations. “It’s sad that I should take responsibility for [Trump’s] dirty deeds,” Mr. Cohen said. “I will not be the villain, as I told you once before. I will not be the villain of his story. … I knew what I was doing was wrong. I stood up before the world yesterday and I accepted responsibility for my actions.” Mr. Dershowitz countered that Mr. Cohen is conflating moral questions regarding allegations of marital infidelity with an incorrect reading of campaign-finance laws. “If a presidential candidate took cash and went to one of these women and said, ‘I’m paying you not to disclose what happened and I’m doing it in order to help myself be elected president,’ that would not be a crime,” Mr. Dershowitz said. “A president is entitled to make campaign contributions to his own campaign. The only issue is if he did it at all, did he do it properly. To the extent that he authorized Cohen, that makes them payments by the president, which makes them legal.” “Whether you think it’s wrong or right, I don’t understand the case for how it’s illegal. If you look at the very, very complicated campaign laws, the one thing that comes out simply is that a candidate may himself or herself contribute as much as they want to a campaign,” he added.

Turley: Cohen lied, broke the law and used Trump to get rich – and now blames Trump for his troubles

In his federal court sentencing hearing Wednesday, President Trump’s former personal attorney Michael Cohen cut a tragic figure of his own making as he tried to convince a judge to spare him from prison for a host of crimes ranging from tax fraud to bank fraud to lying to Congress. He claimed he was a trusting soul undone by the ambition and the machinations of an evil man – Donald Trump. It played out like a modern take on the Tennessee Williams play “A Streetcar Named Desire.” All that was missing was that signature line of the character Blanche DuBois: “Whoever you are … I have always depended on the kindness of strangers.” Blanche was describing her life of woe to a doctor escorting her to a mental hospital. But her line could have been easily added to Cohen’s plea to U.S. District Judge William H. Pauley III in New York City. The former Trump “fixer” and lawyer – who made millions of dollars off his connection to Trump and illegal business dealings – is now a disgraced confessed criminal facing three years in prison (set to begin March 6) and $2 million in fines, forfeitures and restitution. His legal career is over and he easily fits the role of the type of train-wrecked characters that Tennessee Williams loved. In “A Streetcar Named Desire” Blanche DuBois is a riveting character – imperfect, degraded and ultimately destitute. According to his narrative before Judge Pauley, Cohen has lived much of his professional life like a modern Blanche DuBois. Cohen’s tragedy was presented as a tale of affairs gone bad and women scorned, with a cast of opportunists and sycophants. Cohen latched onto Trump as a powerful man who was his ticket to fortune and the good life. But Cohen’s good life shattered when he was caught up in Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into whether the Trump presidential campaign colluded with Russia to win the 2016 presidential election. Mueller’s probe has widened like spider’s web, growing larger and larger and ultimately snaring Cohen for conduct having little to do with Russia. Indeed, most of the crimes were not even linked to Trump. Cohen’s sentencing Wednesday came on his earlier guilty pleas to multiple counts of business and tax fraud. He also pleaded guilty to making an excessive contribution to the Trump campaign involving two women who claimed they had extramarital affairs with Trump – claims Trump denies. Cohen also pleaded guilty to making false statements to Congress regarding unsuccessful efforts to build a Trump Tower in Moscow. When Trump didn’t protect Cohen with a pardon or intervention, Cohen turned to Mueller and began to publicly praise him while criticizing Trump. For his part, Mueller was clearly receptive to Cohen entreaties. While federal prosecutors in the Southern District of New York portrayed Cohen as a liar, manipulator and felon, Mueller undermined their effort to secure a longer prison sentence against Cohen by saying that Cohen is now redeemed and cooperative. Indeed, this remake could be called “A Special Counsel Named Desire.” Mueller’s desire to build a case against President Trump – the man who Cohen described as being responsible for his undoing and leading him into “darkness” – is so overwhelming that he undercut other federal prosecutors. In the end however neither Mueller nor the U.S. attorney in the Southern District of New York would recommend a sentence of zero jail time. Cohen sought mercy based on the kindness of another stranger, Judge Pauley. The tragic story of Cohen is fascinating precisely because it is so grotesque. He made a career as a legal thug who bluffed and bullied his way into millions. Even as prosecutors were closing in on him for tax fraud, bank fraud and perjury, Cohen got companies like AT&T to give him millions of dollars for access and influence over President Trump. It didn’t matter that Cohen was bluffing about his great influence over the president of the United States and that he couldn’t deliver on his extravagant claims of being an influence peddler worth millions to his clients. As Blanche said: “I know I fib a good deal. After all, a woman’s charm is 50 percent illusion.” Few saw much charm in Cohen, but prosecutors laid out how his business and legal practices were virtually 100 percent illusion. At his sentencing hearing, Cohen described his tragic Blanche-like life as being undone by a man who was no good. He proclaimed: “I have been living in a personal and mental incarceration ever since the day that I accepted the offer to work for a real estate mogul whose business acumen that I deeply admired.” Falling for Trump led Cohen to choose “darkness over light,” Cohen said. Fighting back tears, he said that he is a “weak” man who “felt it was my duty to cover up his (Trump’s) dirty deeds.” For Tennessee Williams fans, it all seemed too familiar. Blanche explained how she rode a streetcar named Desire to her doom: “It brought me here. Where I’m not wanted and where I’m ashamed to be.” And it was the same unrestrained desire that brought Cohen to this moment. His desire for money and power – matched by an endless willingness to lie and break the law to achieve it. Like Blanche, Cohen had no difficulty making threats – in his case to journalists, students or anyone Trump wanted out of the way. And Cohen had no difficulty lying about everything to everyone. After all, like Blanche, he seemed to accept that “I don’t tell truths. I tell what ought to be truth.” At his sentencing, Cohen threw himself on the kindness of the stranger judging his fate by saying that, after his long and sleazy journey: “I promise I will be better.” The only thing missing was the coquettish flick of a fan and the sound of a rattling streetcar. Yet in the end, Cohen seemed surprised by the relatively lenient three-year prison sentence Judge Pauley gave him. Some media commentators concluded that Cohen actually hoped that his cooperation and plea for mercy would leave the judge entirely disarmed and charmed. It didn’t, though three years in prison was substantially below what Cohen deserved for years of defrauding the public, banks and the government – as well as lying to Congress. Cohen will now seek to please Mueller with the same abandon as he sought to please Trump. The disgraced lawyer could implicate figures in the White House in the creation of his false narrative given to both Congress and investigators. And he could then return to federal court with a motion for a further reduction of his prison sentence. In truth, Cohen has already benefitted from the kindness of strangers with the help of Mueller and the generous sentencing reduction given by Judge Pauley. Cohen is not done, because like Blanche DuBois he’s “got to be with somebody” or he is just a nobody doing time. Mueller is now that somebody, but he might want to consider Blanche DuBois’ secret to attracting strangers: “I want to deceive him enough to make him – want me.”

Jonathan Turley is the Shapiro professor of public Iiterest law at George Washington University and a practicing criminal defense attorney.

Supreme Court likely to say states can’t levy excessive fines

The Supreme Court left little doubt Wednesday that it would rule that the Constitution’s ban on excessive fines applies to the states, an outcome that could help an Indiana man recover the $40,000 Land Rover police seized when they arrested him for selling about $400 worth of heroin. A decision in favor of 37-year-old Tyson Timbs, of Marion, Indiana, also could buttress efforts to limit the confiscation by local law enforcement of property belonging to someone suspected of a crime. Police and prosecutors often keep the proceeds. Timbs was on hand at the high court for arguments that were largely a one-sided affair in which the main question appeared to be how broadly the state would lose. The court has formally held that most of the Bill of Rights applies to states as well as the federal government, but it has not done so on the Eighth Amendment’s excessive-fines ban. Justice Neil Gorsuch was incredulous that Indiana Solicitor General Thomas Fisher was urging the justices to rule that states should not be held to the same standard. “Here we are in 2018 still litigating incorporation of the Bill of Rights. Really? Come on, general,” Gorsuch said to Fisher, using the term for holding that constitutional provisions apply to the states. Justice Stephen Breyer said under Fisher’s reading police could take the car of a driver caught going 5 mph (8 kph) above the speed limit. “Anyone who speeds has to forfeit the Bugatti, Mercedes or special Ferrari, or even jalopy,” Breyer said. Fisher agreed. It was unclear whether the justices also would rule to give Timbs his Land Rover back or allow Indiana courts to decide that issue. Some justices seemed willing to take that additional step. “If we look at these forfeitures that are occurring today … many of them are grossly disproportionate to the crimes being charged,” Justice Sonia Sotomayor said. But Chief Justice John Roberts said the question of whether what happened to Timbs was excessive might be a closer call. Timbs drove his car to the place where he twice sold small amounts of heroin to undercover officers, and he carried the drugs in the car, Roberts said. Police have long been allowed to seize property in such situations. “You will lose assets you used in the crime,” Roberts said. “You can see how that makes a lot of sense.” Lawyer Wesley Hottot, representing Timbs, told the justices that in rural areas people drive places. He said the use of the Land Rover was incidental to the sale of the drugs. The case has drawn interest from liberal groups concerned about police abuses and conservative organizations opposed to excessive regulation. A decision in Tyson Timbs and a 2012 Land Rover LR2 v. Indiana, 17-1091, is expected by June.

 

Analysis: Trump is right about biased judges; Schumer acknowledges ‘highly political’ rulings

Like a basketball player who mistakenly shoots into his own basket and scores points for the opposing team, Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer of New York has inadvertently backed President Trump’s accurate contention that there are liberal judges appointed by Democrats and conservative judges appointed by Republicans who rule differently on cases. After President Trump criticized U.S. District Judge Jon S. Tigar of San Francisco on Tuesday for issuing an order to stop Trump’s new emergency restrictions on asylum claims by immigrants from taking effect – calling Tigar “an Obama judge” – Chief Justice of the United States John Roberts issued a rare public statement rebuking the president. “We do not have Obama judges or Trump judges, Bush judges or Clinton judges,” Roberts said Wednesday. “What we have is an extraordinary group of dedicated judges doing their level best to do equal right to those appearing before them.” Schumer piled on, criticizing President Trump in a Friday tweet: “I don’t agree very often with Chief Justice Roberts, especially his partisan decisions which seem highly political …. But I am thankful today that he – almost alone among Republicans – stood up to President Trump and for an independent judiciary.” OK, stop and think about that tweet. If Schumer calls Roberts a Republican and believes the chief justice issues “partisan decisions which seem highly political” he is corroborating President Trump. The New York Democratic senator sank one for the president. President Trump was stating a fact when he noted that district and appellate court judges from the 9th U.S. Circuit – which exercises jurisdiction over nine Western states and two U.S. island territories – tend to support liberal and Democratic positons in their rulings. Roberts was right to say an independent judiciary is essential and an ideal that judges should strive for. But we live in the real world, not an ideal world. In the real world, judges are not computers, all coming to identical conclusions on cases. Judges are individuals who come to the bench with different life experiences, different judicial philosophies, and – yes – different political views. That’s why they don’t always reach the same conclusions on the same cases. President Trump’s observation about the 9th Circuit undercuts respect for rulings from that circuit, but the truth hurts. As the old saying goes, “facts are stubborn things.” Here, the facts are with President Trump, if you look at the numbers. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals – where I served as a law clerk many years ago – has swung incontrovertibly to the left over the past 30 years. The president correctly stated that lawyers opposing his policies forum shop to bring their cases before federal judges appointed by Democrats, because they know such judges are more likely to rule in their favor. An increasing number of these judges seem enamored of the media attention their anti-Trump rulings garner. Media adulation encourages “judicial dicta” – court rulings that go beyond facts presented in a case and the application of law to those facts. District judges in the 9th Circuit are issuing imperious rulings, particularly on immigration cases. In some cases, they have claimed their rulings apply to every federal court in the nation. But that is not how the law works. Not surprisingly, the U.S. Supreme Court has consistently overturned hard-left decisions coming out of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. The nation’s highest court accepts cases for review when four members believe circumstances warrant. Typically, a case must be of significance, involve conflicting rulings by appellate courts, or deal with a major contested question. While only a fraction of appeals to the Supreme Court receive review, the American Bar Association reports that 80 percent of the 9th Circuit rulings reviewed by the Supreme Court are overturned. Only one circuit has a higher percentage of overturned cases – the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. They are overruled 83 percent of the time. Notably, that court has 17 Democratic appointees and nine Republican appointees at the district level, and seven Democratic appointees and three Republican appointees active at the appellate level. Altogether, there are 24 Democratic appointees and only 12 Republican appointees. Similarly, in the 9th U.S. Circuit, Democratic appointees outnumber Republican appointees 116 to 33 at the district court level. At the appellate level, Democratic appointees number 16, Republicans just seven. Moreover, of the 132 active Democratic-appointed federal judges within the 9th Circuit, 66 – including Judge Tigar, who was criticized by President Trump – were appointed by President Obama. In other words, 57 percent of Democratic appointees to the 9th Circuit are “Obama judges.” And yes, these are the ones who have made headlines ruling against this President Trump. In effect, what these numbers suggest is exactly what President Trump asserts – that Democratic-appointed judges in the 9th Circuit are out of sync with U.S. Supreme Court precedent, consistently leaning too far left, and with a majority Democrat appointees, most of whom are Obama appointees. Run a counterproof. What is the least-reversed circuit – the one most in sync with the Supreme Court? The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which was reversed only 55 percent of the time. What is that circuit’s composition? Republican appointees outnumber Democrats nine to two. Bottom line: An independent judiciary, in the best tradition of Chief Justice John Marshall, is vitally important. Judges should decide cases in a nonpartisan way. They should review facts impartially, then apply law without personal prejudice or political preference, resolve disputes on narrow legal grounds, construe the Constitution strictly, defer to other branches as constitutionally appropriate, and avoid legislating from the bench. To this extent, Justice Roberts is correct – and in sync with what President Trump and traditional constitutionalists say: America needs a credible, nonpolitical, and independent judiciary. That is and should be a shared goal. However, absent a conscious effort to avoid politics – and in the case of Democratic-appointees, to avoid legislating from the bench – judges who first rose from politics to their judicial appointments seem to drift backward toward their political leanings. President Thomas Jefferson worried about this exact problem. In 1801, he foresaw judicial overreach and warned – even then – that leaders of the political opposition “have retreated into the judiciary as a stronghold, the tenure of which renders it difficult to dislodge them.” In 1807 Jefferson wrote to a friend: “The original error … (was) establishing a judiciary independent of the nation and which, from the citadel of the law, can turn its guns on those they were meant to defend, and control and fashion their proceedings to its own will.” So while we all wish for an independent judiciary – judges who apply the law strictly and on a nonpartisan basis – the 9th U.S. Circuit stands out like a sore thumb. The judges have progressively drifted from the ideal. Accordingly, the facts are with President Trump on this one.

Agreed 100%!!  Thanks to Robert Charles for that spot-on legal op-ed. Robert Charles is a former assistant secretary of state for President George W. Bush, former naval intelligence officer and litigator. He served in the Reagan and Bush 41 White Houses.

Trump responds to CNN, says no First Amendment right to enter White House

Journalists have no First Amendment right to access the White House and CNN isn’t harmed by having reporter Jim Acosta barred from obtaining press credentials, the Justice Department said Wednesday, firing back at the cable network’s new lawsuit. CNN has 50 other journalists covering the White House and so the network isn’t punished by having one barred, the department said in a 28-page response filed in federal court in Washington, D.C. “No journalist has a First Amendment right to enter the White House,” the administration argued. The lawyers added: “The president is generally free to open the White House doors to political allies, in the hopes of furthering a particular agenda, and he is equally free to invite in only political foes, in the hopes of convincing them of his position. The First Amendment simply does not regulate these decisions. And the First Amendment does not impose stricter requirements when journalists, as a subset of the public, are granted or denied access to the White House.” The White House said Mr. Trump gave his personal blessing to strip Mr. Acosta’s pass last week after he verbally sparred with the president during a press conference, then got into an altercation with a White House intern. When the woman came to take the microphone from him, Mr. Acosta refused to give it back, using his hand to chop at the woman’s elbow as she tried to take control of the microphone. That contact has been widely debated. CNN downplayed it, while the White House said it was a physical assault on the woman, and used that as one justification for revoking Mr. Acosta’s press pass. The Justice Department said his conduct “disrupts press events and impedes other reporters from asking questions,” which officials said was “a more-than-sufficient reason for revoking his hard pass.” CNN counters that the move will produce a “chilling effect” in the media. Fox News, the Associated Press and other press outlets agreed, announcing Wednesday they will file friend-of-the-court briefs backing CNN. The Justice Department, though, pointed to a 2006 case involving a dispute between Maryland’s governor and the Baltimore Sun newspaper. A federal court in that case ruled the governor didn’t violate the First Amendment by ordering state employees not to speak with two reporters from the paper. “In reaching that conclusion, the court explained that providing ‘relatively less information’ to one reporter was permissible, even when done ‘on account of [that journalist’s] reporting,’” the lawyers argued.

The lawsuit filed in federal court by CNN against the White House for stripping Jim Acosta of his “hard pass” is beyond ridiculous.  The very notion that his First Amendment rights were somehow violated is silly.  As a refresher…  The First Amendment to the Constitution says, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”  The key words are “Congress shall make no law..”  Nowhere in there does it say the White House, or the President, or the Executive Branch may not prohibit a member of the press from going into the White House.  Nowhere.  Previous administrations have revoked “hard passes” for all sorts of reasons.  But, of course..this is Trump.  So, suddenly its “unheard of” or an “assault on the press” and other such ridiculous nonsense put out there by CNN, MSNBC, and other members of the dominantly liberal mainstream media.  We’re disappointed to see Fox News jump on the band wagon.  Jim is a self-serving, grand-standing, obnoxious tool who makes his broadcasts all about himself; not the president he’s supposed to be covering.  Historically, the President calls on reporters and answers questions.  Not Jim.  He likes to be combative with Trump.  And, he’s very open about it.  He’ll say, “I’m gonna challenge you on…”  That’s not his role.  It’s simply to report along with the rest of the press “pool”..and if given the opportunity to actually ask the president a question, the he should ask, then sit his ass down and pass the microphone to the next reporter…and allow the president to answer.  By the way.. The president is NOT obligated to have such Q & As with the press.  And, the whole incident with Jim getting physical with the poor White House intern just trying to do her job was the final straw for a White House press office that has endured Jim’s nonsense for far too long.  So, he had his hard pass rejected…and deservedly so.  Let’s hope the courts slap CNN down for this ridiculous lawsuit.