Versus Trump: Quick Hits
On this week’s episode of Versus Trump, we bring you a quick-hitting episode with multiple Trump Nuggets about such topics as the nomination of a non-scientist to a "chief scientist" position, a defamation suit that alleges collusion between the White House and Fox News, and a misplaced "only" that could change the meaning of a bill. As usual, you can listen online below, and subscribe here with any podcast player or here in iTunes.
Treason and Cyberwarfare
By Carlton Larson: There are two forms of treason recognized under the United States Constitution: (1) levying war against the United States; and (2) adhering to our enemies, giving them aid and comfort. Each raises slightly different issues with respect to cyberwarfare.
Trump, Pardons, and Guilt
By Mark Osler: Pardons by Trump would be a significant departure from what the pardon power has meant. Clemency is for the guilty, not the innocent.
By Bernadette Meyler: History teaches that Trump should not be considering whether he possesses the power to pardon himself but rather what the consequences of employing that power would be.
Russia and 'Enemies' under the Treason Clause
By Carlton Larson: If we use “treason” in a loose, rhetorical sense, it is plausible to claim that Trump, Jr., Kushner, Manafort and others committed treason by knowingly meeting with a Russian operative for the purpose of obtaining dirt on Hillary Clinton. But the argument fails as a legal matter.
The Supreme Court’s Travel Ban
The Supreme Court is now a co-owner and co-author of the travel ban. That grows truer every time it tinkers with minutiae of this cruel, unjustified policy. And with that position comes major institutional risk to the Supreme Court’s public legitimacy.
Fifth Circuit Ruling Threatens LGBT Rights & Religious Freedom
The Fifth Circuit his reversed a preliminary injunction against HB 1523, Mississippi's unusual anti-LGBT "religious freedom" law. Its reasoning is incorrect and at odds with precedent. En banc review is warranted to establish uniformity in the law and vindicate important constitutional principles.
A Reality Check On Proceedings Related To The Entry Ban Injunctions
Some commentators are seizing on court orders in the proceedings related to the scope of the injunction against the entry ban as an indication that courts are rethinking their decisions against the entry ban. That's wrong (with a cautionary note about the federal courts).