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Westlake Legal Group > Tom Cotton

Dear Tom Cotton, Please Don’t Play Failure Theater With a Recalcitrant IC IG

Westlake Legal Group tom-cotton-ftn-620x349 Dear Tom Cotton, Please Don’t Play Failure Theater With a Recalcitrant IC IG Ukraine Tom Cotton republicans Politics Michael Atkinson inspector general ic ig Front Page Stories Featured Story Council of the Inspectors General on Integrity and Efficiency Congress CIGIE Arkansas Allow Media Exception

On September 26, the IC IG, Michael Aktinson, made an appearance before the Senate Intelligence Committee on the subject of the notorious phone call between President Trump and Ukraine President Zelensky. This is conversation that had created an epidemic of fecal incontinence among the left and our betters on the right. Apparently, the testimony he gave was unsatisfactory. It was made even more unsatisfactory by Atkinson refusing to answer some questions by senators but traipsing over the the House and dishing there. Senator Tom Cotton was not pleased. (By the way, let me note here for all the goobers who are still giving The Federalist a hard time over its story on the modification of the IG’s whistleblower intake form and claiming the story was “debunked”–leftist code phrase for “this fact is really inconvenient to my narrative”–one on the items in Cotton’s letter is Atkinson’s refusal to explain the modification.)

tom cotton letter to IG

Pretty strong stuff. When you’re characterizing an IG’s testimony as “disappointing,” “insolent,” and “obstructive” something is terribly amiss. And I must admit that the actions of Atkinson in this affair lead me to believe that he’s an active participant in this latest attack on President Trump. The whole “Trump appointed” moniker that is hung on Atkinson to make it seem as though he’s some sort of Trump loyalist is just bullsh** and obfuscation. Atkinson’s roots are in the same DOJ National Security Division that is ground zero of the Russia Hoax.

(READ: Did The Intelligence Community IG Actively Aid The “Whistleblower” In His Impeachment Quest)

For all of the good points Cotton makes, though, one is left with exactly the same feeling one used to get every time Mitch McConnell would fulminate about how evil it was to fund Planned Parenthood, or the unlamented Bob Corker complaining about Iran, right before both of them went off and cooperated with normalizing abortion and Iranian adventurism.

Inspector generals are not Middle Eastern potentates. They have independence but they are not autonomous. They are political appointees who have to answer to the president. If Cotton really believes Atkinson stonewalled the GOP in the Senate while cavorting with the Democrats in the House (a view, by the way, that I’m very sympathetic to if, for no other reasons, the professional bureaucracy always sees the Democrats as the legitimate government and the Republicans as hostile interlopers), he can submit a complaint to the Council of the Inspectors General on Integrity and Efficiency (CIGIE). That group can recommend disciplinary action to the president if an IG is found to be acting in a partisan manner. If several senators signed the complaint, you could be sure it was acted on. Or Cotton could direct this complaint to the acting DNI or, better yet, to the president and the Intelligence Committee could hail Atkinson back to testify, again, on the points where Cotton and his colleagues are unhappy.

What is not acceptable is for Cotton to seemingly accept this kind of high-handed treatment and deal with it by sending a letter that reads more like a press release than anything else. It could make you think that Cotton isn’t terribly serious about this but wants us to believe that he is. We’ve seen that movie too many times and we don’t like how it ends.

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The post Dear Tom Cotton, Please Don’t Play Failure Theater With a Recalcitrant IC IG appeared first on RedState.

Westlake Legal Group tom-cotton-ftn-300x169 Dear Tom Cotton, Please Don’t Play Failure Theater With a Recalcitrant IC IG Ukraine Tom Cotton republicans Politics Michael Atkinson inspector general ic ig Front Page Stories Featured Story Council of the Inspectors General on Integrity and Efficiency Congress CIGIE Arkansas Allow Media Exception   Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Tom Cotton Says He Still Believes Iran’s Behavior Warrants a Retaliatory Strike

Westlake Legal Group tom-cotton-620x349 Tom Cotton Says He Still Believes Iran’s Behavior Warrants a Retaliatory Strike Tom Cotton Strait of Hormuz Resurgent Conference Iran Front Page Stories

A day after President Trump announced his intent to pull thousands of men and women out of Afghanistan, Senator Tom Cotton (R-AK) — who some critics suggest has a desire to see the U.S. back in a so-called “forever war” like Iraq and Afghanistan — took the stage Friday in Atlanta at the annual Resurgent Conference and discussed how to deal with Iranian aggression.

Cotton, who appeared at the behest of Atlanta-based radio host Erick Erickson, spent a few minutes sharing details of his book, “Sacred Duty” before being questioned by Erickson as to his opinion on recent moves by Iran to seize European oil tankers in the Strait of Hormuz.

“For understandable reasons, the president is practicing forbearance right now,” Cotton told Erickson, likening Trump’s restraint following Iran’s provocations to President Ronald Reagan’s during the 1980s while he also dealt with an increasingly belligerent Iran.

“But Reagan’s forbearance did not stop Iran. Iran is lashing out like this for the same reason they did in the 1980s: because they’re backed against a wall,” Cotton said.

The senator from Arkansas notably recently called on the U.S. to consider a retaliatory strike on Iran, who ramped up aggression in the Gulf after the U.S. pulled out of former president Obama’s Iran deal. Currently, oil tankers are reportedly intentionally masking their global tracking systems as they move through the Strait of Hormuz.

Britain, who had a tanker seized in the Strait last month, has ruled out a swap for an Iranian tanker they seized in Gibraltar they said were violating European sanctions by taking oil to Syria. Tensions have run high for U.S. allies; however, Germany has indicated it will not join a U.S. led naval mission that seeks to secure tankers traveling near the Iranian coast.

Cotton indicated Friday he still believes Iran’s conduct warrants retaliatory strikes, and noted the increase in U.S. sanctions against Iran two months ago “really put [Iran] in the hurt locker.”

“Iran used to export 9 million barrels of oil a day…now they’re down to 100 thousand a month,” Cotton said.

The post Tom Cotton Says He Still Believes Iran’s Behavior Warrants a Retaliatory Strike appeared first on RedState.

Westlake Legal Group irgc-speed-boat-300x153 Tom Cotton Says He Still Believes Iran’s Behavior Warrants a Retaliatory Strike Tom Cotton Strait of Hormuz Resurgent Conference Iran Front Page Stories   Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Video: Tom Cotton Calmly Exposes the “Radical Open Borders” Position of Democrats in Under 60 Seconds

Westlake Legal Group TomCottonFoxNews1-620x347 Video: Tom Cotton Calmly Exposes the “Radical Open Borders” Position of Democrats in Under 60 Seconds washington D.C. Tom Cotton republicans Politics North Carolina immigration Illegal Immigration Front Page Stories Front Page fox news Featured Story Featured Post democrats Culture Congress Chris Wallace border crisis Arkansas Allow Media Exception

Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) speaks with Chris Wallace – 6/23/19. Screen grab via Fox News.

I’ve got to hand it to House and Senate Republicans – they are not sitting back and taking the left’s punches on the border crisis laying down.

Rep. Dan Crenshaw (TX) isn’t holding back. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (CA) isn’t backing down, and Rep. Liz Cheney (WY) has been unafraid to school funding denier Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) on the issue.

They are just a few of many examples.

The latest example comes from Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR), who appeared on “Fox News Sunday” with Chris Wallace yesterday to discuss the impasse between Democrats and Republicans on illegal immigration and the humanitarian issues that exist at the border.

CNS News reports on Wallace’s question to Cotton, and the Senator’s to-the-point response:

“President Trump has also delayed a roundup that was supposed to begin today of migrant families that have already been given their deportation orders. He said he’s giving Congress two weeks to work out and reform the asylum system, and otherwise, he’ll impose the roundup. I don’t have to tell you. You have a little bit of a look on your face. The likelihood – you talk about healthy skepticism — Congress isn’t going to reform the asylum system in two weeks sir,” host Chris Wallace said.

“So Chris, I was going to say healthy skepticism is warranted for dealing with Democrats when it comes to immigration,” Cotton responded. “Let’s just think about the Democrats position here, Chris. These are people who have claimed asylum in our country. They’ve had their day in court.

“They’ve had their claims rejected, and now they face a valid and final order of removal. If they can’t deport people like that, who can we deport? That’s why the Democrats’ position always comes back to, in essence, open borders,” he said.

Watch video of the segment below:

On Saturday, Cotton made the same point in addressing a tweet from Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY), who claimed Trump and Republicans were just playing to their base had no plan to deal with the issue:

Not only is Cotton spot-on about the left’s open borders position, he’s also correct in how ICE has specifically been tasked to find and deport the illegal immigrants who have received their final order of removal:

ICE Acting Director Mark Morgan made clear in a call with reporters Wednesday that the ICE raids would target illegal aliens who have ignored court orders to leave the country.

“These individuals that are here, and they’ve received a final order of removal, I hope they’ll do what we tried to get them to do previously: Contact their local ICE office — bring their family together, contact their local ICE office and work with us to send them back to their home country,” Morgan said during the call.

Like Wallace, I’m skeptical Democrats and Republicans are going to be able to come up with a bipartisan solution on this issue in the next two weeks. Time will tell.

Related: Tom Cotton Provides A Necessary “History Lesson” After MSNBC Mislabels Segregationist Democratic Senators “Republicans”

—————–
—Based in North Carolina, Sister Toldjah is a former liberal and a 15+ year veteran of blogging with an emphasis on media bias, social issues, and the culture wars. Read her Red State archives here. Connect with her on Twitter.–

The post Video: Tom Cotton Calmly Exposes the “Radical Open Borders” Position of Democrats in Under 60 Seconds appeared first on RedState.

Westlake Legal Group TomCottonFoxNews1-300x168 Video: Tom Cotton Calmly Exposes the “Radical Open Borders” Position of Democrats in Under 60 Seconds washington D.C. Tom Cotton republicans Politics North Carolina immigration Illegal Immigration Front Page Stories Front Page fox news Featured Story Featured Post democrats Culture Congress Chris Wallace border crisis Arkansas Allow Media Exception   Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Tom Cotton Provides a Necessary “History Lesson” After MSNBC Mislabels Segregationist Democratic Senators “Republicans”

Westlake Legal Group tom-cotton-620x349 Tom Cotton Provides a Necessary “History Lesson” After MSNBC Mislabels Segregationist Democratic Senators “Republicans” washington D.C. Tom Cotton Social Media Politics North Carolina MSNBC Media journalism Joe Biden History Front Page Stories Front Page Featured Story Featured Post elections democrats Culture Congress Campaigns Arkansas Allow Media Exception 2020 Elections 2020

As Red State‘s Bonchie wrote yesterday, Joe Biden landed himself in hot water with fellow Democrats on Wednesday. The 2020 presidential contender spoke earlier this week on being able to work with segregationist Senators in the interest of “civility” long ago to get things done.

What Biden didn’t mention is the fact that the Senators in question were segregationists – and Democrats.

A brief recap, via CNN:

During a fundraising event in New York, the Democratic presidential candidate recounted being a member of the Senate in the 1970s with southern Democrats who opposed civil rights and desegregation. He specifically named Mississippi Sen. James Eastland and Georgia Sen. Herman Talmadge, who Biden called “one of the meanest guys I ever knew.”

“I was in a caucus with James O. Eastland. He never called me ‘boy,’ he always called me ‘son,’ ” Biden told donors.

“Well guess what? At least there was some civility. We got things done,” Biden said. “We didn’t agree on much of anything. We got things done. We got it finished.”

“But today, you look at the other side and you’re the enemy. Not the opposition, the enemy. We don’t talk to each other anymore,” he said.

The two Senators he mentioned were not exactly politicians you wanted to be bragging about getting along with, as Bonchie noted in his post. In response to Biden’s comments, a number of other presidential candidates, including Sens. Cory Booker (NJ), Kamala Harris (CA), and Elizabeth Warren (MA) blasted the Democratic front-runner.

During an MSNBC segment on the controversy, anchor Kasie Hunt mislabeled the two Senators as Republicans:

MSNBC Host Kasie Hunt called segregationist Democrats “Republicans” on Wednesday when referencing Joe Biden’s remarks about civility with segregationists in the Senate.

“Still to come, Joe Biden references his relationships with two former Republican colleagues at an event in New York City. The only problem? They were both segregationists,” Hunt said, referring to Herman Talmadge and James Eastland, who were both Democratic senators.

[…]

Hunt did not correct her comments when she returned from the break.

Watch the segment below:

Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) got wind of the news of Hunt’s flub, and took to the Twitter machine to provide a quick but necessary history lesson:

Hunt later issued a correction, but it was long after the segment was over:

Sure. Like 24 hours after the damage has been done. But okay.

—————–
—Based in North Carolina, Sister Toldjah is a former liberal and a 15+ year veteran of blogging with an emphasis on media bias, social issues, and the culture wars. Read her Red State archives here. Connect with her on Twitter.–

The post Tom Cotton Provides a Necessary “History Lesson” After MSNBC Mislabels Segregationist Democratic Senators “Republicans” appeared first on RedState.

Westlake Legal Group tom-cotton-300x169 Tom Cotton Provides a Necessary “History Lesson” After MSNBC Mislabels Segregationist Democratic Senators “Republicans” washington D.C. Tom Cotton Social Media Politics North Carolina MSNBC Media journalism Joe Biden History Front Page Stories Front Page Featured Story Featured Post elections democrats Culture Congress Campaigns Arkansas Allow Media Exception 2020 Elections 2020   Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Experts: Mines used against oil tankers sure do have “striking resemblance” to Iranian weapons

Westlake Legal Group cbs-iran-mine Experts: Mines used against oil tankers sure do have “striking resemblance” to Iranian weapons Tucker Carlson Tom Cotton The Blog oil tanker limpet mines Iran Gulf of Oman donald trump Bernie Sanders

Will this convince Bernie SandersNaah, but at least some in the media have taken notice of the Pentagon’s evidence of Iranian attacks on oil shipping in the Gulf of Oman. Following up on initial video evidence of Iranian sailors trying to retrieve evidence from the two oil tankers damaged near the Strait of Hormuz, experts have produced physical evidence that has a “striking resemblance” to weapons about which Iran has openly bragged in the past:

The limpet mines used to attack a Japanese-owned oil tanker near the Strait of Hormuz last week bore “a striking resemblance” to similar mines displayed by Iran, a U.S. Navy explosives expert said Wednesday, stopping short of directly blaming Tehran for the assault. The comments by Cmdr. Sean Kido came as the Navy showed reporters pieces of debris and a magnet they said Iran’s Revolutionary Guard left behind when they spirited away an unexploded limpet mine after the June 13 attack in the Gulf of Oman.

Kido showed the journalists, including CBS News correspondent Charlie D’Agata, fragments from one of the exploded weapons the U.S. says were used in the attack, in addition to the magnet left affixed to the Japanese ship. …

[T]he Navy showed a picture previously shared among weapons experts of a limpet mine on display in Iran, which they said resembled the one they suspected was used on the ship. That picture showed a conical mine, some 90 pounds in weight, on display with a sign next to it identifying it as being produced by a research company affiliated with the Revolutionary Guard.

“The limpet mine that was used does bear a striking resemblance to that which has been publicly displayed in Iranian military parades,” Kido said. “There are distinguishing features.”

Memo to IRGC: Maybe don’t use weapons from the Death to America catalogue next time.

As for the initial reports that the damage was caused by “flying objects,” Kido says the damage to the ships doesn’t substantiate that scenario. The placement of the explosions, near the water line but enough about it to keep the ships from sinking. points to the use of mines placed deliberately to send a message:

The mines were placed above the vessel’s water line. One exploded, punching through the double-hulled ship and sparking a brief fire. The placement of the mines on the vessel makes it “not appear that the intention was to sink the vessel,” Kido said.

“The damage we observed is consistent with a limpet mine attack; it is not consistent with an external flying object hitting the ship,” Kido said.

Authorities also recovered a handprint and fingerprints, he said. “We recovered biometric information … which can be used to build a criminal case to hold the individuals responsible accountable.” He did not offer more details.

That explanation cuts both ways in terms of conspiracy theories. If the US conducted this as a false-flag operation, they would have taken care not to sink the vessels. By the same token, Iran might have decided that (a) an attack was good enough to shake up the sanctions alliance without sinking the ships, and (b) careful placement would make it look like a US false-flag operation. I know which way I’d bet on that choice, and I’m pretty sure which way Bernie Sanders would bet, too.

One way to settle it would be to run the fingerprints through the Pentagon to see if it matches any US personnel. The fact that they were left and then discovered by the US tells me that the Pentagon’s not concerned about matches.

Tom Cotton has seen enough. He wants Donald Trump to launch a retaliatory strike on Iran:

Tom Cotton is the most outspoken champion for bombing Iran in a Senate filled with Republican hawks. And he’s got President Donald Trump’s ear on it, too. …

[I]n an interview in his Capitol office on Tuesday, he offered a hard-line case for the president to take action now and not wait, as some of his GOP colleagues are advocating.

“There are more than ample targets that can deter Iran from this kind of malicious behavior whether it’s naval bases or munition storage or refining capabilities,” Cotton said.

His goal? “To inflict enough pain on Tehran that they realize that we’re not going to tolerate these kind of attacks on the high seas.”

Trump sounded very skeptical of this idea, however, when Time Magazine asked about it. That might be because of who has Trump’s other ear on Iran:

In the upper echelons of the Trump administration, hawkish voices on Iran predominate—most notably Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and National Security Adviser John Bolton. But as tensions between the U.S. and Iran have escalated over the last few weeks, there’s been another, far different voice in the president’s ear: that of Fox News host Tucker Carlson.

A source familiar with the conversations told The Daily Beast that, in recent weeks, the Fox News host has privately advised Trump against taking military action against Iran. And a senior administration official said that during the president’s recent conversations with the Fox primetime host, Carlson has bashed the more “hawkish members” of his administration.

While some Fox News hosts have argued that a conflict with Iran would be justified, Carlson has consistently criticized U.S. military intervention abroad, particularly in the Middle East. In recent weeks, he has questioned whether war with Iran would be “in anyone’s interest.” Last month, he publicly chided Bolton, saying he was intentionally escalating tensions, and that a potential conflict would “be like Christmas, Thanksgiving, his birthday wrapped into one.”

Trump’s not likely to disagree with Carlson anyway, given his own consistent non-interventionist instincts. He’ll strike when he must, and he might have to do so at some point, but Trump won’t want it to be over oil. He’ll need more unanimity on any pre-emptive or retaliatory strike on Iran, and today’s exhibition looks like just the first step along that path.

The post Experts: Mines used against oil tankers sure do have “striking resemblance” to Iranian weapons appeared first on Hot Air.

Westlake Legal Group cbs-iran-mine-300x159 Experts: Mines used against oil tankers sure do have “striking resemblance” to Iranian weapons Tucker Carlson Tom Cotton The Blog oil tanker limpet mines Iran Gulf of Oman donald trump Bernie Sanders   Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Tom Cotton: You’ll have to make some sacrifices for the trade war, but they’re minimal compared to the sacrifices of our military heroes

Westlake Legal Group t-4 Tom Cotton: You’ll have to make some sacrifices for the trade war, but they’re minimal compared to the sacrifices of our military heroes Trade War Tom Cotton The Blog Tariffs soybean China BEIJING Arkansas

This analogy reminds me of the part in “Spinal Tap” when they’re standing at Elvis’s grave: “It really puts perspective on things though, doesn’t it?” “Too much. There’s too much f***ing perspective now.”

It must be noted that literally any policy, up to and including the Green New Deal, could be justified in these terms. Imagine the Democratic tax-hike rationales: “Yes, you’ll be paying 15 percent more next year to fund Medicare for All but at least you’re not shipping out to Afghanistan to fight the Taliban.”

In trade war as in real war, some will be called on to sacrifice more than others:

America’s farmers are growing anxious. The establishment GOP narrative about the trade war with China is that this is all a means to an end: It’s a leverage play, plain and simple. We hit ’em with tariffs, choke off American demand for Chinese products, bring the Chinese economy to its knees, then China comes begging to us for unconditional surrender. We set the terms, they sign the new deal, and poof go the tariffs. Mission accomplished.

Hopefully that’s how it’ll work in practice but it’s not how the president tends to talk about the process. In Trump’s rhetoric, tariffs aren’t an unhappy means to a happy end, they’re good in and of themselves.

Trump, who once famously described himself as a “Tariff Man,” thinks tariffs can help revive American manufacturing by making American goods more competitive price-wise with Chinese alternatives. Never mind that that will mean American consumers paying more at the store whether they buy American or buy Chinese. By driving demand towards domestic goods, he’s hoping to drive a boom in domestic supply as well.

If he believes that, though, I’m not sure why he’d want a trade deal with China at all. Granted, ending the trade war would mean the end of Chinese tariffs on American goods, a boon to American farmers, but Trump’s already got a plan in lieu of that happening, per his tweets. Uncle Sam’s going to buy those American goods with its new tax revenue — which it’ll be collecting from American consumers, including farmers, not from China — and then donate them to countries in need. A reporter on the global agriculture beat at Reuters wonders how that would work:

You’d also need an expensive supply chain to ship all of those American goods to poor countries, notes Eric Boehm at Reason. Who’s paying for that? And what would this sudden influx of American goods due to domestic markets in those countries? Either way, he sounds pretty excited about this new arrangement. Is that tough talk to spook China by showing his commitment to a long trade war or is it how Tariff Man actually thinks?

Try to imagine the reaction among MAGA Nation to a scheme from Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez that involved (1) raising taxes, (2) a massive federal intervention in commodities markets, and (3) generous giveaways to third-world countries.

There’s also a recurring question of how well this trade war is being managed. In a real war, you pick your battles carefully and form alliances to multiply your strength. In a trade war, evidently you fight everyone at once:

The biggest importers of Chinese goods are the European Union, the United States, Japan, South Korea, Vietnam, and India. These nations all share three qualities in respect to China: Wariness of Chinese growth, irritation by Chinese trade practices, and existing alliances with the United States. (In case of India, the alliance is under development, and the Trump administration has made efforts to grow it.)…

Which brings us to the president’s self-sabotage. Early into his administration, Trump pulled the plug on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP). Since then he has also put tariffs on European and Canadian goods and is now considering the addition of new tariffs. Canada and the E.U. are not America’s adversaries. They, along with Australia, are its most reliable allies—and we need their help if we are to win Trump’s trade war.

A smart strategy would be to lift these newly imposed tariffs on our allies, re-join both agreements, and then encourage India to either join the TPP or form a bilateral free trade agreement.

If if if the goal here really is to maximize pressure on China so that it capitulates and signs a new trade deal with greater benefits to the U.S., then a multilateral approach is wise. But what if it’s not? What if, again, Tariff Man thinks tariffs are good in and of themselves and sees them as a path to greater self-sufficiency for the U.S.? Remember, this is a guy who continues to insist that we’re “losing” because we’re running a trade deficit with China, which is like claiming that you “lost” at the grocery store because the grocer ended up with your money but you didn’t end up with his. Maybe Trump is willing, albeit reluctantly, to sign a trade deal with Beijing that would end tariffs but also perfectly willing and possibly eager to wage a long trade war in the belief that American manufacturing can only benefit from it long-term, never mind the economic wreckage short-term. The fact that Cotton’s reaching for analogies to military sacrifice suggests that he doesn’t think China’s surrender is coming soon, if at all. Gonna be a lot of fallen on the battlefield.

The post Tom Cotton: You’ll have to make some sacrifices for the trade war, but they’re minimal compared to the sacrifices of our military heroes appeared first on Hot Air.

Westlake Legal Group t-4-300x159 Tom Cotton: You’ll have to make some sacrifices for the trade war, but they’re minimal compared to the sacrifices of our military heroes Trade War Tom Cotton The Blog Tariffs soybean China BEIJING Arkansas   Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Media That Once Accused 47 Republicans of Violating the Logan Act Now Says John Kerry Is In the Clear

Westlake Legal Group JohnKerry-620x310 Media That Once Accused 47 Republicans of Violating the Logan Act Now Says John Kerry Is In the Clear Tom Cotton the washington post The New York Times Politics Politico Michael Flynn logan act John Kerry Front Page Stories Front Page Featured Story donald trump democrats CNN

A little shot and chaser action this morning for you.

President Trump caused a bit of a kerfuffle this week in the media because he dared to suggest that John Kerry, who violated every aspect of the Logan Act with his interactions with Iran, should be prosecuted for his crimes. As I pointed out in my previous piece, I personally think the Logan Act is garbage and would be found unconstitutional if pursued, but that didn’t stop the Obama administration from using it as a pretext to target Michael Flynn. It also didn’t stop the media from suggesting 47 Republicans Senators should be prosecuted under it for their opposition to the Iran deal.

So what’s changed?

Here’s CNN back in 2015.

Forty-seven Senate Republicans may have broken the law this week. But no one’s losing any sleep over it.

Pundits and legal scholars are raising questions over whether Sen. Tom Cotton and the 46 Senate Republicans violated the Logan Act when they penned a letter to Iran’s leaders on Monday, undercutting President Barack Obama’s efforts to negotiate a nuclear agreement with those same leaders. The law, passed in 1799, forbids any U.S. citizen — acting without official U.S. authority — from influencing “disputes or controversies” involving the U.S. and a foreign government.

Now, to be fair, CNN was at least living in reality enough that they admitted no prosecution was likely. In fact, they went so far as to lay out why the law probably wouldn’t hold up. Those were simpler times. But they spun the whole thing as “of course Tom Cotton and others are guilty, but they’ll get off on the technical faults of the law.”

We saw similar pieces from The Washington Post, Politico, and The Guardian, among many others. The thing to notice here is that the media started and instigated the conversation about Republicans breaking the Logan Act, even as most of the article belatedly admitted it wouldn’t stand up to constitutional scrutiny.
Fast forward to 2017 and we saw numerous articles referencing the Logan Act as legitimate in pursuit of charges against Michael Flynn. See here, here, and here.

Here’s The New York Times letting us know why Trump should “fear” the Logan Act and that he certainly broke it.

That leads us to this week, where the media all the sudden decided not only is the Logan Act not worth talking about, it’s crazy sauce to even suggest that John Kerry be prosecuted under it. Instead of doing speculative pieces as they’ve done for Republicans for years, they immediately started to push out the “fact-checks” to provide direct cover. This example via CNN.

Since the act’s creation, correspondence and interaction between Americans — lawmakers, former lawmakers, and citizens alike — has become increasingly common.

It’s also common for former secretaries of states and diplomats to stay in touch with their counterparts around the world.

Last year, before the administration decided to pull out of the deal, the Boston Globe reported that Kerry was taking part in meetings with big players in Iran, meetings which were promptly criticized by the Trump administration. However, last October, Kerry told reporters that he had not met with Iranians since the US pulled out of the Iran nuclear deal in May 2018 and had seen Iran’s foreign minister at a few international security meetings.

Trump alleged that Kerry “is talking to Iran and has been. He’s had many meetings and phone calls and he’s telling him what to do.”

But Matt Summers, a spokesman for Kerry, said in a statement that Trump’s claim “is simply wrong, end of story.”

Why would you quote John Kerry’s spokesman in a fact-check? The author goes on to let us know that because John Kerry said so, he certainly didn’t actually violate the Logan Act, even though she actually quotes him as admitting to meeting with the Iranians before Trump pulled out of the Iran deal.

The Washington Posts resident Democratic moutpiece also made the same case, using John Kerry’s spokesman as evidence in a fact-check. He then goes on to spin the whole thing as misconduct by Trump for suggesting such a prosecution.

Look, the point here isn’t to say that John Kerry actually should be convicted under the Logan Act. I wouldn’t hold up but perhaps we should make him a test case? Regardless, the overall point here is the vastly different media reactions. When it’s Republicans, we get lots of op-eds and hard news pieces full of “well, maybe they did break the law” speculation. When it’s John Kerry we get nothing until President Trump brings it up, then we get “fact-checks” exonerating Kerry and chastisement of the President for even suggesting it. This despite the fact that the media have suggested use of the very same law multiple times to target Republicans.

It’s absurd. Can we all just come to an agreement that we aren’t going to bring up this ridiculous law anymore for political reasons? The problem is that the mainstream media would never play by consistent rules even if they existed. The next time they can, the Logan Act will undoubtedly be in vogue to suggest again. Mark it down.

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The post Media That Once Accused 47 Republicans of Violating the Logan Act Now Says John Kerry Is In the Clear appeared first on RedState.

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