SOURCE: ExposedByCMD.org, 2020-10-13
This page last modified: 2020-10-19 17:25:05 -0700 (PST)
Twitter. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse: "This, more and more, looks like it's not three schemes -- but it's one scheme. With the same funders selecting judges, funding campaigns for the judges, & then showing up in court in these orchestrated amicus [amicus curiae] flotillas to tell the judges what to do."
Senator Whitehouse: "What's behind us is now 80 cases, Mr. Chairman, 80 cases under Chief Justice Roberts [John Roberts] that have these characteristics. One, they were decided 5-4 by a bare majority. Two, the 5-4 majority was partisan in the sense that not one Democratic appointee joined the five. I refer to that group as the "Roberts five." It changes a little bit as with Justice Scalia [Antonin Scalia]'s death, for instance, but there's been a steady Roberts five that has delivered now 80 of these decisions.
In all these areas where it's about political power for big special interests and people who want to fund campaigns and people who want to get their way through politics without actually showing up, doing it behind DonorsTrust and other groups, doing it through these schemes, over and over and over again, you see the same thing -- 80 decisions, Judge Barrett, 80 decisions, and 80-0 sweep.
I don't think you've tried cases but some cases, the issue is bias and discrimination, and if you are making a bias case, as a trial lawyer -- Lindsey Graham is a hell of a good trial lawyer, if he wanted to make a bias case, Dick Durbin is a hell of a good trial lawyer -- if they wanted to show an 80-0 pattern, (A), that's admissible and, (B), I'd love to make that argument to the jury. I'd be really hard-pressed to be the lawyer saying, 'No, 80-0 is just a bunch of flukes, all 5-4, all partisan, all this way.' So something is not right around the court, and dark money has a lot to do with it. Special interests have a lot to do with it. DonorsTrust and whoever is hiding behind DonorsTrust has a lot to do with it."
Here are the data shown in the preceding image.
Senator Sheldon Whitehouse mentions the following dark money organizations and actors in his presentation.
The Judicial Education Project [aligned with the Judicial Crisis Network -- aka The Concord Fund | aka Honest Elections Project [overlaps Judicial Crisis Network] | aka The 85 Fund [aka Judicial Education Project] -- an elaborate obfuscating shell game. Carrie Severino, who helped select Amy Coney Barrett as a SCOTUS nominee, also works for the Judicial Education Project.
[2020-10-13] Senator Sheldon Whitehouse discusses the influence of dark money in the Supreme Court with CNN's Wolf Blitzer. Following the 2nd day of hearings for Judge Amy Coney Barrett, Sen. Whitehouse discusses the impact of dark money on the judicial confirmation process.
SOURCE: ExposedByCMD.org, 2020-10-13
This page last modified: 2020-10-19 17:25:05 -0700 (PST)
Editor's Note: The following is a transcript of remarks made by Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) in the October 13, 2020, Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Thank you, Chairman, Judge Barrett. You can take a bit of a breather on your return to the committee, because what I want to do is go through with the people who are watching this now the conversation that you and I had when we spoke on the telephone. You were kind enough to hear out a presentation that I made, and I intend to ask some questions in that area, but it doesn't make sense to ask questions if I haven't laid the predicate, particularly for viewers who are watching this.
So, I guess the reason that I want to do this is because people who are watching this need to understand that this small hearing room and the little TV box that you are looking at, the little screen that you are looking at, are a little bit like the frame of a puppet theater, and if you only look at what's going on in the puppet theater you're not going to understand the whole story. You are not going to understand the real dynamic what is going on here, and you are certainly not going to understand forces outside of this room who are pulling strings and pushing sticks and causing the puppet theater to react.
So first, let me say, why do I think outside forces are here pulling strings? Well, part of it is behavior. We have colleagues here who supported you, this nominee, before there was a nominee. That's a little unusual.
We have the political ram job that we have already complained of driving this process through at breakneck speed in the middle of a pandemic [see: COVID-19/Coronavirus: USA -- Trump White House -- Mismanagement Of] while the Senate is closed for safety reasons and while we are doing nothing about the COVID epidemic around us. We have some very awkward 180s from colleagues. Mr. Chairman, you figure in this. Our leader said back when it was Garland versus Gorsuch, that of course, of course, the American people should have a say in the Court's direction. Of course, of course, said Mitch McConnell. That's long gone.
Senator Grassley [Chuck Grassley] said the American people shouldn't be denied a voice. That's long gone. Senator Cruz [Ted Cruz] said you don't do this in an election year. That's long gone. And our chairman made his famous hold-the-tape promise if an opening comes in the last year of President Trump's term we'll wait until the next election. That's gone too.
So there is a lot of hard-to-explain hypocrisy and rush taking place right now, and my experience around politics is that when you find hypocrisy in the daylight, look for power in the shadows. Now people say well, what does all this matter? This is a political parlor game; it's no big deal. Well, there are some pretty high stakes here that we have been talking about here on our side, and I will tell you three of them right here.
Roe v. Wade [abortion], Obergefell v. Hodges [same-sex marriage], and the Obamacare [Affordable Care Act] cases. Here's the GOP platform, the Republican platform, the platform of my colleagues on the other side of this aisle say that a Republican president will appoint judges who will reverse Roe, Obergefell, and the Obamacare cases. So if you have a family member with an interest in some autonomy over their body under Roe v. Wade, the ability to have a marriage, have friends marry, have a niece or a daughter or a son marry someone of their same-sex they have -- you've got a stake, and if you are one of the millions and millions of Americans who depend on the affordable care act you've got a stake.
It's not just the platform. Over and over again, let's start by talking about the Affordable Care Act. Here is the president talking about this litigation that we are gearing up this nominee for for November 10 . In this litigation, he said we want to terminate healthcare under Obamacare.
That is the president's statement, so when we react to that, don't act as if we are making this stuff up. This is what President Trump said. This is what your party [Republican] platform says: reverse the Obamacare cases. Senator after senator, including many in this committee, filed [amicus curiae] briefs saying that the Affordable Care Act should be thrown out by courts. Why is it surprising for us to be concerned that you want this nominee to do what you want nominees to do?
One quick stop on NFIB v. Sebelius [National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius], because a lot of this has to do with money. This is an interesting comparison. National Federation of Independent Businesses, until it filed the NFIB v. Sebelius case, had its biggest donation ever of $21,000. In the year that it went to work on the Affordable Care Act, ten wealthy donors gave $10 million. Somebody deserves a thank you.
National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius, 567 U.S. 519 (2012), was a landmark United States Supreme Court decision in which the Court upheld Congress' power to enact most provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), commonly called Obamacare, and the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act (HCERA), including a requirement for most Americans to have health insurance by 2014. The Acts represented a major set of changes to the American health care system that had been the subject of highly contentious debate, largely divided on political party lines. ...
So let's go on to Roe v. Wade. Same thing. Same thing. The president has said that reversing Roe v. Wade will happen automatically because he is putting pro-life justices on the Court. Why would we not take him at his word? The Republican Party platform says it will reverse Roe. Why would we not comment on that and take you at your word?
Senators here, including Senator Hawley [Josh Hawley], have said I will vote only for nominees who acknowledge that Roe v. Wade is wrongly decided, and their pledge to vote for this nominee. Do the math. That's a really simple equation to run.
The Republican brief in June Medical [June Medical Services, LLC v. Russo] said Roe should be overruled, so don't act surprised when we ask questions about whether that's what you are up to here. And finally, out in the ad world that you have spared yourself wisely Judge Barrett, the Susan B. Anthony Foundation [Susan B. Anthony List?] is running advertisements right now saying that you are set, you are set to give our pro-life country a Court that it deserves.
Here is the ad with the voiceover. She said -- she said. And then Roe, Obamacare cases and Obergefell, gay marriages. National Organization for Marriage, the big group that opposes same-sex marriage, says in this proceeding, all our issues are at stake. The Republican platform says it wants to reverse Obergefell. And the Republican brief filed in the case said same-sex relationships don't fall within any constitutional protection, so when we say the stakes are high on this, it's because you have said the stakes are high on this. You have said that is what you want to do. So how are people going about doing it? What is the scheme here?
Let me start with this one. In all cases, there's big anonymous money [dark money] behind various lanes of activity. One lane of activity is through the conduit of the Federalist Society. It is managed by a guy -- was managed by -- a guy named Leonard Leo, and it has taken over the selection of judicial nominees. How do we know that to be the case? Because Trump has said so over and over again. His White House counsel said so. So we have an anonymously funded group controlling judicial selection run by this guy Leonard Leo.
Then in another lane, we have again anonymous funders running through something called the Judicial Crisis Network, which is run by Carrie Severino, and it is doing PR and campaign ads for Republican judicial nominees. It got $17 million -- a single $17 million donation in the Garland-Gorsuch contest. It got another single $17 million donation to support Kavanaugh. Somebody, perhaps the same person, spent $35 million to influence the United States Supreme Court. Tell me that's good.
And then over here you have a whole array of legal groups, also funded by dark money, which have a different role. They bring cases to the Court. They don't wind their way to the Court, your Honor, they get shoved to the Court to by these legal groups, many of which ask to lose below so they can get quickly to the Court to get their business done there. And then they turn up in a chorus, an orchestrated chorus of amici [amicus curiae].
Now I've had a chance to have a look at this. And I was in a case, actually, as an amicus myself, the Consumer Financial Protection Board case. And in that case there were 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11 amicus briefs filed, and every single one of them was a group funded by something called DonorsTrust.
DonorsTrust is a gigantic identity-scrubbing device for the right wing so that it says DonorsTrust is the donor without whoever the real donor is. It doesn't have a business. It doesn't have a business plan. It doesn't do anything. It's just an identity scrubber.
And this group here, the Bradley Foundation, funded eight out of the 11 briefs. That seems weird to me when you have amicus briefs coming in little flotillas that are funded by the same groups but nominally separate in the court.
So I actually attached this to my brief as an appendix. the Center for Media and Democracy saw it, and they did better work. They went on to say which foundations funded the brief writers in that CFPB case. Here is the Bradley Foundation for $5.6 million to those groups. Here's DonorsTrust, $23 million to those brief writing groups. The grand total across all the donor groups was $68 million to the groups that were filing amicus briefs, pretending that they were different groups.
| Right-Wing Foundations Fund Anti-Consumer Protection Groups, 2014-present.|
Sixteen right-wing foundations gave nearly $69 million to groups urging the Supreme Court to abolish the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau since 2014.
|Source | table as image|
|The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is an agency of the United States government responsible for consumer protection in the financial sector. CFPB's jurisdiction includes banks, credit unions, securities firms, payday lenders, mortgage-servicing operations, foreclosure relief services, debt collectors and other financial companies operating in the United States.|
The CFPB's creation was authorized by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, whose passage in 2010 was a legislative response to the financial crisis of 2007-2008 and the subsequent Great Recession. The CFPB's status as an independent agency has been subject to many challenges in court. In June 2020, the United States Supreme Court found the single-director structure removable only with-cause unconstitutional, but allowed the agency to remain in operation.
|Charles Koch Foundation||$12,986,462|
|Sarah Scaife Foundation||$7,550,000|
|Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation||$5,579,500|
|Searle Freedom Trust||$4,550,000|
|Dunn Foundation [DeSmogBlog profile]||$4,450,000|
|Donors Capital Fund||$2,522,680|
|John William Pope Foundation||$1,895,175|
|Bradley Impact Fund||$1,363,000|
|Mercer Family Foundation||$1,200,000|
|Adolph Coors Foundation||$1,155,000|
|F.M. Kirby Foundation||$672,500|
|Charles Koch Institute||$517,134|
|Ed Uihlein Family Foundation||$408,000|
|Pierre F. and Enid Goodrich Foundation||$395,000|
|William H. Donner Foundation||$167,000|
And it's not just in the Consumer Financial Protection Board case. You might say well that was just a one-off. Here's Janus [Janus v. AFSCME], the anti-labor case that had a long trail through the Court, through Friedrichs, and through Knox, and through other decisions.
And SourceWatch and ProPublica did some work about this. Here's DonorsTrust and Donors Capital Fund. And here's the Bradley Foundation. And they totaled giving $45 million to the 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15 groups that filed amicus briefs, pretending to be different groups, and both of the lawyer groups in the case, funded by DonorsTrust, funded by Bradley Foundation in Janus.
This is happening over and over and over again, and it goes beyond just the briefs. It goes beyond just the amicus presentations. The Federalist Society -- remember this group that is acting as the conduit and that Donald Trump has said is doing his judicial selection? They're getting money from the same foundations, from DonorsTrust, $16.7 million and the Bradley Foundation, $1.37 million. From the same group of foundations total, $33 million.
|Donors to the Federalist Society, 2014-present.|
The same 16 foundations that fund the amicus brief filers all give to the Federalist Society.
|Source | table as image|
|Donors Capital Fund||$16,733,100|
|Mercer Family Foundation||$4,850,000|
|Donors Capital Fund||$4,231,120|
|Charles Koch Foundation||$2,419,264|
|Searle Freedom Trust||$1,551,000|
|Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation||$1,375,000|
|Ed Uihlein Family Foundation||$1,000,000|
|John William Pope Foundation||$250,000|
|Adolph Coors Foundation||$230,000|
|Pierre F. and Enid Goodrich Foundation||$210,000|
|Dunn Foundation [DeSmogBlog profile]||$150,000|
|F.M. Kirby Foundation||$120,000|
|William H. Donner Foundation||$45,000|
|Bradley Impact Fund||$15,250|
|Charles Koch Institute||$6,400|
So you can start to look at these, and you can start to tie them together. The legal groups, all the same funders over and over again, bringing the cases and providing us orchestrated, orchestrated chorus of amici. Then the same group also funds the Federalist Society over here. The Washington Post wrote a big expose about this, and that made Leonard Leo a little hot, a little bit like a burned agent. So he had to jump out. And he went off to go do anonymously-funded voter suppression work. Guess who jumped in to take over the selection process in this case for Judge Barrett? Carrie Severino made the hop. So once again, ties right in together.
So, the Center for Media and Democracy did a little bit more research. Here's a Bradley Foundation memo that they've published. The Bradley Foundation is reviewing a grant application asking for money for this orchestrated amicus process, and what do they say in the staff recommendation? It is important to orchestrate -- their word, not mine -- important to orchestrate high-caliber amicus efforts before the Court.
Note the Contact listed in that proposal: Neil Corkery, a dark money financier with ties to: the 45 alliance | the Judicial Crisis Network (JCN) | the Wellspring Committee (a funder of JCN) | Public Interest Legal Foundation | ...
They [Center for Media and Democracy] also note that Bradley has done previous philanthropic investments in the actual underlying legal actions. So Bradley is funding -- what do they call -- philanthropically investing in, the underlying legal action and then giving money to groups to show up in the orchestrated chorus of amici. That can't be good.
And it goes on, because they also found this email. This email comes from an individual at the Bradley Foundation, and it asks our friend, Leonard Leo, who used to run the selection process, is there a 501(c)(3) nonprofit to which Bradley could direct any support of the two Supreme Court amicus projects other than DonorsTrust? I don't know why they wanted to avoid the reliable identity-scrubber DonorsTrust, but for some reason they did.
So Leonard Leo writes back on Federalist Society address -- so don't tell me that it isn't Federal Society business -- on Federalist Society, on his address, he writes back, yes, send it to the Judicial Education Project, which could take and allocate the money. And guess who works for the Judicial Education Project? Carrie Severino, who also helped select this nominee, running the Trump Federalist Society selection process.
So the connections abound. In the Washington Post article, they point out that the Judicial Crisis Network's office is on the same hallway in the same building as the Federalist Society, and when they sent their reporter to talk to somebody at the Judicial Crisis Network, somebody from the Federalist Society came down to let them up.
This more and more looks like it's not three schemes, but it's one scheme with the same funders selecting judges, funding campaigns for the judges, and then showing up in court in these orchestrated amicus flotillas to tell the judges what to do.
On the Judicial Crisis Network, you've got the Leonard Leo connection, obviously. She hopped in to take over for him with the Federalist SocietyFederalist Society. You've got the campaigns that I've talked about, where they take $17 million contributions. That's a big check to write, $17 million, to campaign for Supreme Court nominees. No idea who that is or what they got for it. You've got briefs that she wrote. The Republican senators filed briefs in that NFIB case signed by Ms. [Carrie] Severino.
The woman who helped choose this nominee has written briefs for Republican senators attacking the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Don't say the ACA is not an issue here. And by the way, the Judicial Crisis Network funds the Republican attorneys general. It funds RAGA, the Republican Attorneys General Association, and it funds individual Republican attorneys general. And guess who the plaintiffs are in the Affordable Care Act case? Republican attorneys general.
Trump joined them because he didn't want to defend, so he's in with the Republican attorneys general. But here's the Judicial Crisis Network campaigning for Supreme Court nominees, writing briefs for senators against the Affordable Care Act, supporting the Republicans who are bringing this case, and leading the selection process for this nominee.
Here is the page off the brief. Here is where they are. Mitch McConnell, and on through the list, Senator Collins, Senator Cornyn, Senator Hoeven, Senator -- who's still here? Marco Rubio. It's a huge assortment of Republican senators who Carrie Severino wrote a brief for against the Affordable Care Act. So this is a, to me, pretty big deal. I've never seen this around any court that I've ever been involved with, where there's this much dark money and this much influence being used.
Here's how the Washington Post summed it up. This is "a conservative activist behind-the-scenes campaign to remake the nation's courts," and it's a $250 million dark money operation. $250 million is a lot of money to spend if you're not getting anything for it. So that raises the question, what are they getting for it?
Well, I showed the slide earlier on the Affordable Care Act. And on Obergefell and on Roe v. Wade, that's where they lost. But with another judge, that could change. That's where the contest is. That's where The Republican Party platform tells us to look at how they want judges to rule, to reverse Roe, to reverse the Obamacare cases, and to reverse Obergefell and take away gay marriage. That is their stated objective and plan. Why not take them at their word?
But there is another piece of it, and that is not what's ahead of us, but what's behind us. What's behind us is now 80 cases, Mr. Chairman, 80 cases under Chief Justice Roberts [John Roberts] that have these characteristics. One, they were decided five to four by a bare majority. Two, the five-to-four majority was partisan in the sense that not one Democratic appointee joined the five. I refer to that group as the "Roberts Five."
It changes a little bit as-with Justice Scalia [Antonin Scalia]'s death, for instance -- but there's been a steady "Roberts Five" that has delivered now 80 of these decisions. And the last characteristic of them is that there is an identifiable Republican donor interest in those cases, and in every single case, that donor interest won. It was an 80 to zero, 5 to 4 partisan rout, ransacking.
And it's important to look at where those cases went, because they're not about big, public issues like getting rid of the Affordable Care Act, undoing Roe v. Wade, and undoing same sex marriage. They're about power. And if you look at those 80 decisions, they fall into four categories over and over and over again. One, unlimited and dark money and politics. Citizens United [Citizens United v. FEC] is the famous one, but it's continued since with McCutcheon [McCutcheon v. FEC] and we've got one coming up now. Always the five for unlimited money in politics. Never protecting against money dark money in politics, despite the fact that they said it was going to be transparent.
And who wins when you allow unlimited dark money in politics? A very small group. The ones who have unlimited money to spend and a motive to spend it in politics. They win. Everybody else loses. And if you're looking at who might be behind this, let's talk about people with unlimited money to spend and a motive to do it. We'll see how that goes.
Next, knock the civil jury down. Whittle it down to a nub. The civil jury was in the Constitution, in the Bill of Rights, in our darn Declaration of Independence, but it's annoying to big corporate powers because you can swagger your way as a big corporate power through Congress. You can go and tell the president you put money into to elect what to do. He will put your stooges at the EPA. It's all great until you get to the civil jury, because they have an obligation, as you know, Judge Barrett, they have an obligation under the law to be fair to both parties irrespective of their size.
You can't bribe them. You're not allowed to. It's a crime to tamper with the jury. It's standard practice to tamper with Congress. And they make decisions based on the law. If you're used to being the boss and swaggering your way around the political side, you don't want to be answerable before a jury. And so one after another, these 80 5-to-4 decisions have knocked down, whittled away at, the civil jury, a great American institution.
Third -- first was unlimited dark money, second was demean and diminish the civil jury -- third is weaken regulatory agencies. A lot of this money, I'm convinced, is polluter money. The Koch Industries is a polluter, the fossil fuel industry is a polluter. Who else would be putting buckets of money into this and wanting to hide who they are behind DonorsTrust or other schemes?
And what are -- if you're a big polluter -- what do you want? You want weak regulatory agencies. You want ones that you can box up and run over to Congress and get your friends to fix things for you in Congress. Over and over and over again, these decisions are targeted at regulatory agencies to weaken their independence and weaken their strength. And if you're a big polluter, a weak regulatory agency is your idea of a good day.
And the last thing is in politics. In voting. Why on earth the Court made the decision, a factual decision -- not something appellate courts are ordinarily supposed to make, as I understand it Judge Barrett -- the factual decision that nobody needed to worry about minority voters in preclearance states being discriminated against, or that legislators would try to knock back their ability to vote. These five made that finding in Shelby County against bipartisan legislation from both houses of Congress, hugely passed, on no factual record.
They just decided that that was a problem that was over, on no record with no basis, because it got them to the result that we then saw. What followed? State after state after state passed voter suppression laws. One so badly targeting African Americans that two courts said it was surgically, surgically tailored to get after minority voters.
[2020-06-09] "must-read:" Bradley [Foundation] Spent Millions on Voter Suppression, Union Busters, Climate Deniers, and Right-Wing Media in 2019. As part of Bradley's strategic vision, it invests in groups to defund and dismantle unions, to fuel a web of climate change deniers, and to prop up right-wing media.
And gerrymandering, the other great control. Bulk gerrymandering where you go into a state, like the Red Map project did in Ohio and Pennsylvania, and you pack Democrats so tightly into a few districts that all the others become Republican majority districts. And in those states, you send a delegation to Congress that has a huge majority of Republican members, like 13 to 5, as I recall, in a state where the five, the party of the five actually won the popular vote.
[ExposedByCMD.org, 2020-10-15] ALEC Board Member Reveals Kansas Partisan Gerrymandering Plan to Donors.
[Slate.com, 2019-10-02] How to Get Away With Gerrymandering. A leaked audio recording reveals how state lawmakers are taught to trash evidence, avoid the word gerrymander, and create an appearance of bipartisanship.
[ExposedByCMD.org, 2020-10-15] ALEC Board Member Reveals Kansas Partisan Gerrymandering Plan to Donors.
When Susan Wagle, an American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) Board Member, and Kansas Senate President, met with political donors at the Wichita Pachyderm Club on September 25 2020, the top thing on her mind was keeping a Republican supermajority in the Kansas legislature so the GOP could rig redistricting to oust the state's only Democratic member of Congress and get a 4-0 lock on the Kansas congressional delegation for the next decade.
In a video circulated on Twitter by the civic participation group Loud Light, Wagle told donors, "My Senate seat, that Renee Erickson is running in right now, it is pro-Biden. It's moved to the Left. And during redistricting, I need to give her some more Republican neighborhoods in order to make sure she stays elected."
Gerrymandering: In October 2020, a video surfaced which appeared to show Susan Wagle encouraging Republicans to win a supermajority in the State legislature so that they could draw a gerrymandered map that would cause Democrats to lose a congressional seat.
Kansas State Senate Pres. Susan Wagle told a Republican club on Sept. 25 2020 that they are losing support -- specifically among women and in the suburbs -- so they're going to have to redraw districts to protect Republicans.
Susan Wagle served as a delegate to the 1996 Republican National Convention. Susan Wagle served as National Chairman of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) in 2006. As of 2019, Susan Wagle was a member of ALEC's Board of Directors.
[reference] American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC).
You've sent a delegation to Congress that is out of step with the popular vote of that state and court after court figured out how to solve that, and the Supreme Court said nope. 5 to 4 again. Nope. We're not going to take an interest in that question. In all these areas where it's about political power for big special interests, and people who want to fund campaigns, and people who want to get their way through politics without actually showing up, doing it behind DonorsTrust and other groups, doing it through these schemes over and over and over again, you see the same thing.
80 decisions, Judge Barrett. 80 decisions. An 80-to-0 sweep. I don't think you've tried cases, but some cases, the issue is bias and discrimination. And if you're making a bias case as a trial lawyer -- Lindsey Graham is a hell of a good trial lawyer. If he wanted to make a bias case -- Dick Durbin is a hell of a good trial lawyer. If they wanted to make a bias case and they could show an 80-to-0 pattern, (A), that's admissible, and (B), I'd love to make that argument to the jury. I'd be really hard pressed to be the lawyer saying no, 80-to-0 is just a bunch of flukes.
All five-four. all partisan, all this way. So something is not right around the Court. And dark money has a lot to do with it. Special interests have a lot to do with it. DonorsTrust and whoever is hiding behind DonorsTrust has a lot to do with it, and the Bradley Foundation orchestrating its amici [amicus curiae] over at the Court has a lot to do with it.
So I thank you, Amy Coney Barrett, for listening to me now a second time and I think this gives you a chance for you and I to tee up an interesting conversation tomorrow. And I thank my colleagues for hearing me out.
[reference] American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC)
[reference] Amy Coney Barrett
[reference] Federalist Society
[reference] Judicial Crisis Network, aka The Concord Fund
[reference] Wealthy Influencers, Campaigners, Disruptors, Dark Money: Machiavellian Wealthy Individuals, Disinformationists, Tax-Exempt Non-Profits, SuperPACs ...
[reference] Human Rights: Transphobia -- United States -- Roger Severino, Trump Administration Eviscerate Trans Rights. Roger Severino is the husband of Carrie Severino, who figures prominently in this SCOTUS saga.
[Documented.net, 2020-10-16] New filing shows massive dark money support from Judicial Crisis Network to Republican Attorneys General Association.
[DemocracyNow.org, 2020-10-16] Dark Money & Barrett Nomination: The Link Between Big Polluters & the War on ACA, Roe & LGBT Rights. | Video (YouTube, 2020-10-16)
[Esquire.com, 2020-10-14] Sheldon Whitehouse Made the Case That Amy Coney Barrett's Nomination Is a Bag Job. It was planned and executed by a vast and single-minded network of which no parallel exists on the other side.
[MotherJones.com, 2020-10-13] Watch Senator Sheldon Whitehouse School Amy Coney Barrett on Dark Money. "$250 million is a lot of money to spend if you're not getting anything for it." -- Sheldon Whitehouse.
[RawStory.com, 2020-10-13] WATCH: Lindsey Graham uses Amy Barrett hearing to whine about his Senate rival Jaime Harrison
Republican Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) suggested his Democratic challenger was somehow improperly obtaining campaign funds. Jaime Harrison raised a record-breaking $57 million from July through September 2020, the highest quarterly total for any U.S. Senate candidate in history, and Graham hinted during Amy Coney Barrett's Supreme Court nomination hearing that something was afoul.
"Let's go to Citizens United," Graham said, referring to the landmark campaign financing decision, Citizens United v. FEC. "To my good friend Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse. Me and you are going to come closer and closer about regulating money, because I don't know what's going on out there, but there's a lot of money being raised in this campaign. I'd like to know where the hell some of it is coming from."
[YouTube, 2020-10-13] Amy Coney Barrett confirmation hearings 2020-10-13 -- Lindsey Graham questions Citizens United.
[DemocracyNow.org, 2020-10-13] Packing the Courts: How Republicans Spent Decades Installing Judges to Cement Minority Rule. Amid Senate confirmation hearings for Amy Coney Barrett, we look at how conservatives have used dark money to push to seat her on the Supreme Court before the November 3 2020 election, following a decades-long project by conservatives to install right-wing judges across the federal judiciary.
[InTheseTimes.com, 2020-(02-03)] Behind Janus: Documents Reveal Decade-Long Plot to Kill Public-Sector Unions. The Supreme Court case Janus v. AFSCME is poised to decimate public-sector unions-and it's been made possible by a network of right-wing billionaires, think tanks and corporations. | local copy (html, captured 2020-10-16)
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