Tuesday, President Donald Trump won a major courtroom victory when a federal judge dismissed a lawsuit from the Democratic National Committee related to alleged interference in the 2016 campaign.
Trump praised Judge John Koeltl, a Clinton appointee, for the favorable ruling. Koeltl ruled that the Trump officials named in the DNC’s lawsuit were shielded from the allegations under the First Amendment and that Russia could not be sued in the courts for the election interference.
“Wow! A federal Judge in the Southern District of N.Y. completely dismissed a lawsuit brought by the Democratic National Committee against our historic 2016 campaign for President,” Pres. Trump wrote on Twitter. “The Judge said the DNC case was “entirely divorced” from the facts, yet another total & complete….vindication & exoneration from the Russian, WikiLeaks and every other form of HOAX perpetrated by the DNC, Radical Democrats and others. This is really big “stuff” especially coming from a highly respected judge who was appointed by President Clinton. The Witch Hunt Ends!”
The DNC filed its lawsuit in April 2018, alleging that the Trump campaign, WikiLeaks and the Russian government conspired to prevent former Secretary of State Hillary R. Clinton from winning the 2016 election. The Democrat’s lawsuit cited a 2016 Trump Tower meeting in which Paul Manafort, Donald Trump Jr. and Jared Kushner met with a Russian woman who had reported ties to the Vladimir Putin government and Russian Intelligence agencies and was reportedly offering to share information on Sec. Clinton. The DNC argued that a Russian attempt to hack a DNC back-up server the next day was evidence of coordination.
The judge dismissed the case writing that the DNC failed to provide evidence that the Trump campaign figures assisted the hackers and pointed out that there is no law against using information published by WikiLeaks.
Tuesday’s ruling was another setback for Democrats in Congress who had hoped to impeach the President. An 18 month investigation by Special Counsel Robert Mueller failed to provide any indictments of the President or members of his family.
Manafort was indicted and convicted; but that was for tax evasion having to do with money he made working as a campaign manager for a deposed Pro-Russian Ukrainian President. Manafort made the money overseas, did not pay U.S. taxes on it, and then smuggled portions of it into the United States without ever reporting it to the IRS or paying a tax bill. Trump fired Manafort during the campaign when much of the tax issues were revealed.
House Democrats are continuing their own investigations; but even if Trump were impeached, the Republican controlled Senate would be unlikely to act on those charges. The House can only impeach. It would require the Senate to remove the President. Two American Presidents have been impeached, Andrew Johnson and William J. “Bill” Clinton. The Senate has never voted to remove a President. President Richard M. Nixon (R) resigned rather than face impeachment.
Some Republicans are calling for an investigation of the investigators.
Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) has said that he supports a Senate review of the justification for surveillance warrants against Carter Page, a foreign-policy adviser to the Trump campaign that were based on the “Steele Dossier” which was written by former British intelligence agent Christopher Steele, who was paid by the DNC and the Hillary Clinton campaign to investigate Trump.
“Whether or not it’s illegal, I don’t yet know,” Graham said. “What makes no sense to me is that all of the abuse by the Department of Justice and the FBI – the unprofessional conduct, the shady behavior – nobody seems to think that’s much important. Well that’s going to change, I hope.”
An investigation by Republicans in the House of Representatives, before the Democrats took control of the House in January, discovered incendiary text messages in which FBI agents Peter Strzok, Lisa Paige, and others professed their hatred for Trump and hinted at an effort to undo the 2016 election.
Some GOP partisans have gone so far as to suggest that the Steele Dossier and its use by the FBI and DOJ in the waning days of the Obama Administration to get FISA warrants on the Trump campaign and the Trump transition team and then leak selected information obtained from those warrants to the press and Congress in order to spur calls for the special counsel investigation amounted to a de facto attempted coup d’etat by professionals within the DOJ and the intelligence community.
The Justice Department’s Inspector General also is conducting its own review of the Russia investigation.
Former State Representative Perry O. Hooper Jr. (R-Montgomery) is asking for a full Senate Judiciary Committee investigation of the investigators.
“It’s time the Senate Republicans bow up,” Hooper told the Alabama Political Reporter. “U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, Chairman of the Judiciary Committee should call his Committee into a Special meeting to start the process of Investigating the Investigators.”
“US Senator Graham should subpoena Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller and the three bias attorneys that served on the Investigating team for questioning,” Hooper added. “I would also suggest that the Committee invite US Attorney General to attend the meetings.”
“The first question Senator Graham and his Committee should ask is, why were the three bias attorneys allowed to serve on the Investigation team, when they obviously had a conflict of interest,” Hooper told APR. “This is wrong! There should have been an ethical standard required for any attorney that has a conflict of interest. It’s Time Senate Republicans Bow Up and start Investigating the Investigators.”
Hooper currently serves on the National Trump/Victory Committee, the Alabama Republican State Executive Committee and is contemplating a 2020 run for Congress, representing Alabama’s open Second Congressional District where incumbent Martha Roby has announced her decision not to run for a sixth term.
(Original reporting by Fox News, the Patriot Channel, USA Today, and the Hill’s Brett Samuelson contributed to this report.)
Alabama Farmers Federation endorses Jerry Carl
Tuesday, the Alabama Farmers Federation’s political action committee, FarmPAC, announced that they have endorsed Mobile County Commissioner Jerry Carl (R) for Alabama’s First Congressional District.
“We take pride in being a grassroots organization with local leaders driving the endorsement process,” said Federation President Jimmy Parnell. “After a careful consideration, county Federations in southwest Alabama made their recommendation, and I am pleased to announce the Alabama Farmers Federation has endorsed Jerry Carl. Alabama’s 1st Congressional district has a rich heritage rooted in agriculture and timber, and Jerry will be strong advocate from those industries in Washington.”
Carl expressed his appreciation for the Federation’s endorsement.
“It is an incredible honor to have the endorsement of the Alabama Farmers Federation,” Carl said. “With agriculture being our state’s largest industry, our farmers are the backbone of our state and our economy. They represent the hard-working interests of the district that I will fight for in Congress as we work to get our economy back on track. \The Federation knows I will fight tirelessly for the president’s agenda and will do what is needed to support the hard-working men and women who put food on our tables and clothes on our backs.”
Congressional endorsements are recommended by county Federations in each district based on the candidates’ positions on key issues impacting farmers and rural Alabama. Carl is running in the Republican primary runoff against former State Senator Bill Hightower. The First Congressional District is open because incumbent Rep. Bradley Byrne is not seeking re-election. The eventual winner of the Republican nomination will face the winner of the Democratic Party primary runoff in the November 3 general election. The Democratic runoff is between Kiani Gardner and James Averhart.
Other candidates in the July 14 runoff races endorsed by the Federation include: Tommy Tuberville (R) for U.S. Senate, Jeff Coleman (R) in Alabama Congressional District 2, and incumbent Judge Beth Kellum (R) for Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals, Place 2.
The Federation encourages voters concerned about casting a vote in person to follow guidance from Alabama Secretary of State John H. Merrill (R).
“Amid coronavirus concerns, it is important to remember that Alabamians who are concerned about contracting or spreading an illness have the opportunity to avoid the polls on Election Day by casting an absentee ballot,” said Merrill. “Alabamians can access the application online or by visiting or calling their local Absentee Election Manager’s office.”
Sewell implores Alabamians “to speak out and demand change without violence”
Alabama U.S. Rep.Terri Sewell said that her heart aches for George Floyd and that anger should be directed not to violence but to action.
“The heroes of the Civil Rights Movement showed us it is possible to change history without damaging property and torching businesses that our community members depend on, so I implore all Alabamians to speak out and demand change without violence,” Sewell said. “We cannot let violence distract from the legitimate anger and frustration that we must channel toward action. I pray for both peace and justice.”
Sewell posted a video message Monday in response to protests across the country, which have at some points, turned violent and chaotic. On Sunday, several reporters were attacked in Birmingham, and some businesses were vandalized.
The representative’s video message comes after Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin and Montgomery Mayor Steven Reed also called peaceful demonstration. Birmingham implemented a curfew in response to the riotous demonstrations Sunday evening, but the city also removed a Confederate monument from Linn Park.
“To all those who feel marginalized because of the color of your skin: I see you and I hear you,” Sewell said. “Your pain and hopelessness is legitimate — since the founding of our nation, our criminal justice system has failed our black and brown communities. My heart aches for George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and the countless others whose senseless deaths have not made the national news cycle.”
Sewell represents Alabama’s 7th Congressional District and is the only black member of Alabama’s congressional delegation.
“As a daughter of Selma, I myself have struggled to reconcile with the moment in which we continue to find ourselves, over and over,” Sewell said in the video statement. “The Foot Soldiers who came before us fought to create a better future, but every day we are reminded that that fight is far from over. They sacrificed their lives in pursuit of an America that lives up to its ideals – an America that we have not yet reached more than 55 years later.”
Sewell said the racism that causes pain can be seen plainly in police brutality and in the staggering health disparities black communities have endured before and during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It can be seen in thinly-veiled attempts to put African Americans in our place, holding on to and idolizing a time when our bodies were not our own,” she said. “And it can be seen in the state-sanctioned holidays and monuments that honor the leaders of the Confederacy, including today, ‘Jefferson Davis Day.’”
Sewell said she also knows that the vast majority of Americans across the country and in Birmingham are peacefully protesting for social justice.
“I wish I had all the answers and I could give us all the solutions we need,” Sewell concluded. “For now, I promise that I will work tirelessly to do absolutely everything within my power to bring peace and justice to our communities.”
“My Administration is fully committed that for George and his family, justice will be served,” President Donald Trump said on Monday. “He will not have died in vain. But we cannot allow the righteous cries of peaceful protesters to be drowned out by an angry mob.”
Floyd was killed while being arrested by the Minneapolis Police Department on suspicion of counterfeiting. The police officer who killed Floyd has been arrested and charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter. Activists say more widespread reform of policing and the criminal justice system needs to happen, and the other officers involved in Floyd’s homicide should also be charged.
ACLU of Alabama backs right to protest
The ACLU of Alabama in a statement Tuesday expressed support for the Constitutionally protected right to protest and called for an end to racist policing.
“We support protesters in Alabama and across the nation who are expressing their grief at the senseless deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and all of the many Black men, women, and children who have been killed at the hands of police,” the statement reads. “We stand with those who are demanding justice from a system that has both historically abused and too often abuses Black communities to this day. Black people should not live in fear of being shot and killed by the police.
The ACLU said these times of unrest compel us to examine what will make our communities safer and more equitable.
“Police, sheriffs, and other government officials have discretion in how they use their time and resources,” the organization said in their statement. “Now is the time to question how they use that discretion around the role that law enforcement possesses in our communities, especially given the disproportionate harm inflicted upon communities of color, particularly Black communities, caused by enhanced militarization of law enforcement in this country. We cannot effectively address police violence without completely reimagining the role of police. We must significantly reduce the responsibilities and presence of police in the everyday lives of people in heavily policed communities. We will not rest until there is an end to racist policing.”
“The ACLU’s commitment to ending racist and violent policing goes back decades, from confronting the police violence that fueled protests in Los Angeles, Detroit, and Newark in the 1960s, through Ferguson. Sadly, those efforts have not worked. We must do more.
“Rather than spend taxpayer dollars on enforcing restrictions on the constitutionally protected right to protests, police and government officials should focus on seeking justice and holding themselves accountable to the people they are supposed to protect and serve.”
Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin on Monday declared a state of emergency and enacted a city-wide curfew after a peaceful protest Sunday turned violent early Monday morning.
Protests across Alabama on Monday were peaceful, with few arrests reported, according to news accounts.
Alabama leaders remember Auburn head football Coach Pat Dye
On Monday, former Auburn football head Coach and Athletic Director Pat Dye died from kidney and liver failure. He had recently tested positive for COVID-19 as well. He was age 80. Many Alabama leaders commented fondly on the legendary Auburn football Coach from 1981 to 1992.
Congressman Robert Aderholt (R-Haleyville) said in a statement, “If there was a college football version of Mount Rushmore, Pat Dye could be there among the greats. Not only did he bring Auburn football back into prominence by winning games, SEC Championships, and what probably should have been a 1983 National Championship, he was a wonderful molder of young men. While he will long be remembered for the games he won and the contributions he made to the great Auburn-Alabama rivalry, there are hundreds of people who were touched by him who will carry on his legacy for decades to come.”
U.S. Senate candidate former Auburn head football coach Tommy Tuberville said, “Today is a sad day for the Auburn community with the loss of Coach Pat Dye. Coach Dye was a true Auburn man and believed in the value of hard work and “a sound mind, in a sound body and a spirit that is not afraid, and in clean sports that develop these qualities.” He helped to instill these Auburn principles in players and fans alike. He was one of the coaching greats of the game, and many including myself learned invaluable lessons from watching him. My thoughts and prayers are with his family for peace and comfort during this time.”
U.S. Senate candidate former Attorney General Jeff Sessions said, “The state of Alabama has lost one of its legendary coaches in Pat Dye. The field at Jordan-Hare Stadium in Auburn is named for him. He won four SEC championships at Auburn University, and he coached my choice for the world’s greatest athlete, Bo Jackson, and others like Tracy Rocker, the tremendous Outland Award winner. Coach Dye’s teams were famous for their toughness and fighting spirit and for never quitting. He brought the Iron Bowl to Auburn and won an upset victory in that historic first game at Auburn in 1989. Pat Dye never lost his country roots or his common touch. My condolences to Coach Dye’s family, and to the entire Auburn family.”
Alabama Governor Kay Ivey (R) said, “I am saddened to hear of the passing of Coach Pat Dye — a great man, coach and member of the Auburn family. Not only was he a phenomenal football coach, but an even better person. For years, I have known Pat personally and have always valued his friendship and colorful commentary. He had great takes on both football and life. Coach Dye truly embodied the Auburn spirit. He will be missed not only by the Auburn family, but the entire state of Alabama. War Eagle, Coach. Your life and legacy lives on.”
Former State Rep. Perry O. Hooper Jr (R-Montgomery) said, “We lost a great Coach and a Great American today!Coach Pat Dye passed away this morning.”
U.S. Senator Doug Jones (D-Alabama) said, “Coach Dye was larger than life-a true legend. Not only did he win countless Auburn football games at the helm of championship teams, but more importantly he won the hearts of so many in Alabama and beyond. He truly was a man of great character and my heart is heavy hearing the news of his recent passing. Louise and I will be keeping his loved ones in our prayers.”
U.S. Representative Bradley Byrne (R-Montrose) said, “Coach Dye was always so friendly, encouraging, and just a true joy to be around. Rebecca and I join so many others in mourning his passing and remembering a life most certainly well lived.”
Alabama Republican Party Chairman Terry Lathan said, “Moments I’ll always remember and be grateful for- celebrating my birthday with an Auburn man and legend. Wings up Coach as he walks humbly with God. “I believe in my Country, because it is a land of freedom and because it is my own home, and that I can best serve that country by doing justly, loving mercy, and walking humbly with my God.”-Auburn creed.”
“I was saddened to hear about Coach Dye’s passing this morning,” said Second Congressional District candidate Barry Moore. “Everyone in Alabama knew him, and those who knew him well knew what a fine person he was.”
Auburn Athletics Director Allen Greene said, “For four decades, Coach Dye showed all of us what it looks like to be an Auburn person. His coaching exploits are well known, securing his induction into the College Football Hall of Fame. His skills as an administrator were equally formidable, resulting most notably in bringing the Iron Bowl to Jordan-Hare Stadium. Just like his football teams, Pat Dye the athletic director was tenacious, never backing down from a fight when he believed Auburn’s good name and best interests demanded it. Thanks to his tenacity, I’ll always treasure my first home Iron Bowl, celebrating victory on the field that bears his name.”
Current Auburn Head Football Coach Gus Malzahn said, “Coach Dye was much more than a hall of fame coach and administrator at Auburn. He was an Auburn leader and visionary. He not only returned the football program back to national prominence during his tenure, but was a key figure in bringing the Iron Bowl to Auburn and made an impact on the university and in the community. He embodied what Auburn is about: hard work, toughness and a blue collar mentality. Coach Dye’s impact on Auburn is endless and will stand the test of time. “
Dye also coached for six seasons at East Carolina University and one season with the University of Wyoming. Dye played football at the University of Georgia and was an assistant football coach under legendary University of Alabama head football Coach Paul “Bear” Bryant. Dye’s overall record as a head coach was 163-62-5. He was 99-39-4 at Auburn where he is the third winningest coach in the history of the program.
Opinion | With liberty and justice for all
Opinion | Racism has broken America. We can fix it
Sessions blasts Tuberville for declining Fox News debate invitation
Alabama Republicans will hold summer meeting August 1
Russell Bedsole announces candidacy for House District 49
Alabama Farmers Federation endorses Jerry Carl
35 days left to apply for an absentee ballot for primary runoff election
Opinion | Stellar group studying gambling in the state
“We’re surging:” Alabama reports largest COVID-19 increases to date
Alabama health officer: Numbers “are not headed in the right direction”
New COVID cases in Alabama increasing faster than 46 other states
Tuscaloosa mayor: “We have entered into a danger zone” as hospitalizations rise
Montgomery hospitals are out of ICU beds, mayor says
Prison staff delayed aid to dying inmate, witness says
Two prison workers test positive for coronavirus
Alabama doctors report suspected cases of COVID-19 related illness in children
Health5 days ago
Tuscaloosa mayor: “We have entered into a danger zone” as hospitalizations rise
Crime2 days ago
Alabama attorney general signals end to fight over Birmingham’s Confederate monument
Josh Moon2 days ago
Opinion | How can any of this be a surprise?
Health5 days ago
Less than 1 percent of Alabama inmates have been tested for COVID-19