ChrisWeigant.com

Archive of Articles in the "Free Speech" Category

Anita Hill 2.0 In The Age Of #MeToo

[ Posted Monday, September 17th, 2018 – 16:51 PDT ]

We are all about to see a hypothetical scenario many have wondered about actually become reality. The hypothetical situation can be stated as: "In the age of #MeToo, how would the Anita Hill accusations against Clarence Thomas have played out differently?" Because we've now got another Supreme Court judicial nominee who has been accused of sexual misconduct during his confirmation process. What happens next is (as of this writing) uncertain, but it appears that the Senate committee handling his confirmation hearings is going to be forced to address the controversy in one way or another.

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Friday Talking Points [500] -- Manafort Flips!

[ Posted Friday, September 14th, 2018 – 17:50 PDT ]

Convicted felon Paul Manafort pleaded guilty today to two additional serious federal felonies, one of which was conspiracy to defraud the United States government. He also had to pony up tens of millions of dollars' worth of real estate, because one of the frauds he perpetrated was avoiding paying $15 million in federal taxes by money laundering. The biggest news, however, wasn't Manafort pleading guilty to his ninth and tenth felonies, but the fact that to get a plea deal he had to agree to cooperate with Bob Mueller's investigation. This is what he's been fighting against doing all along, so it is big news.

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Democrats Need To Keep Fighting Even If Kavanaugh Is Confirmed

[ Posted Wednesday, September 5th, 2018 – 18:18 PDT ]

I'm writing this while watching the Senate confirmation hearing on Judge Brett Kavanaugh. As usual for Supreme Court confirmation hearings, it is fascinating to watch. However, also as usual, it is likely going to be absolutely meaningless, because Republicans are going to have the votes to confirm him in the end. The [...]

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Elizabeth Warren's Swamp-Draining Bill

[ Posted Thursday, August 23rd, 2018 – 16:26 PDT ]

What with all the guilty pleas and verdicts for felony corruption in the news, it's hard for any other story to break through -- even one about a senator valiantly trying to end some of the most egregious forms of corruption in the nation's capital. Which is a shame, because Senator Elizabeth Warren's new bill deserves more attention than it has been getting -- maybe now more than ever.

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Maybe Now Congress Will Act On Marijuana Banking Reform?

[ Posted Monday, August 20th, 2018 – 17:16 PDT ]

Over two decades after California legalized medical marijuana (becoming the first of many states to do so), Congress has still refused to act in any way to admit the fact that the times they are a-changin' on marijuana law. Six years after Colorado and Washington became the first two states to outright legalize recreational use for adults, Congress still refuses to act. In the meantime, marijuana has grown into a multibillion-dollar industry, and as with every other multibillion-dollar industry (especially agricultural ones -- remember all those "Got Milk?" ads?), it has begun spending money on lobbying politicians. So far it's a relative drop in the bucket -- total marijuana lobbying this year is only a relatively paltry million dollars -- but one story today may eventually have a ripple effect that (hopefully) will end with Congress admitting the new reality of the existence of the state-legal marijuana industry. In a way, it's a sad commentary on our political system, where as we all know money talks quite loudly. But that's a discussion for another day, really. The system is what it is, and if in some way it spurs the otherwise-somnolent legislators into doing the right thing for once, then that at least will be a desirable outcome.

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Friday Talking Points [496] -- OMG Omarosa!

[ Posted Friday, August 17th, 2018 – 17:07 PDT ]

Omarosa was wholly created, as a media personality, by Donald Trump. He absolutely loved her backstabbing and underhanded play on his reality show, The Apprentice. He loved her act so much that he brought it with him to the White House. Now that she's turned against him, however, he isn't loving her act quite so much anymore. Sad!

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I Am Not An Enemy Of The People

[ Posted Thursday, August 16th, 2018 – 18:04 PDT ]

I am not an "enemy of the people." I am not an enemy of The People. Parse it or capitalize it however you like, I am still not an enemy of the people.

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Taking Back The Streets

[ Posted Monday, August 13th, 2018 – 16:13 PDT ]

This weekend, decent people -- and by that, I mean people who are not white supremacists -- took back the streets, in both Washington D.C. and Charlottesville, Virginia. One year after the tragic deaths in Charlottesville (one at the hands of the white-supremacists, two from a police helicopter crash), the neo-Nazis were shamed and shouted down successfully. Thus proving the old adage: "the answer for free speech you don't agree with is more free speech." This time, the voice of decency was louder, which is entirely as it should be.

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Friday Talking Points [491] -- FART Act, Pruitt Out

[ Posted Friday, July 6th, 2018 – 16:55 PDT ]

We are (of course) not drawing any onomatopoetic comparisons to Scott Pruitt's last name with that title -- perish the thought! -- because it is merely a reference to two political stories which bookended this week. That's all. Ahem.
We begin with a little history. Benjamin Franklin was a funny guy, and was [...]

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Supreme Court Takes The Cake

[ Posted Monday, June 4th, 2018 – 16:40 PDT ]

Today, the Supreme Court punted. Or, to be more properly seasonal, they ruled that a runner didn't touch second base so they invalidated his home run. The case before them was Masterpiece Cakeshop versus Colorado Civil Rights Commission, a test case that dealt with the limits of the freedom of religion and the state's right to regulate commerce to assure equal treatment under the law for all. However, the ruling did not directly address that weighty constitutional issue, but rather ruled that the state behaved improperly in its decision-making process. They didn't rule on the decision itself, in other words, but rather how it was arrived at. This is the big reason why the ruling was not another 5-4 decision, but rather 7-2. If the high court had ruled on the actual question before them, no matter how they ruled it most probably would have been another close 5-4 split.

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