SHE SAID / HE SAID: SCRIPTING the 04.27.11 LAUNCH of PRESIDENT OBAMA’S LONG FORM BIRTH CERTIFICATE

April 1, 2012

©2012 jbjd

This is third in the series of articles addressing the legal nature of that long form birth certificate purporting to establish President Barack Obama’s Hawaiian birth, released on April 27, 2011 in the form of both electronic images which were posted on the WhiteHouse.gov blog and, hard copies (of those same images) which were distributed to reporters. (This is all spelled out in the first 2 articles in the series, WHY PRESIDENT OBAMA WAITED until APRIL 27, 2011 to RELEASE a FACSIMILE of his LONG FORM BIRTH CERTIFICATE and WHY PRESIDENT OBAMA RELEASED the LONG-FORM IMAGE of his BIRTH CERTIFICATE in PDF versus JPEG, which are meant to be read before tackling the present post,) But the article I originally had in mind to follow these 2 required re-thinking when I received an email from azgo suggesting that “by reading the ‘jbjd’ blog, [the Obama campaign] devised the [long-form birth certificate] scheme to make it look like the image came directly from HI; per our conversations [on this blog] about how state election officials should receive birth records directly from the state in which the candidate was born.” That got me to thinking. So, I looked for any articles referencing the distinction between a real identification document and a fake; which were posted here on “jbjd” before the 2012 re-election campaign launch in April 2011.

azgo could be right.

On January 3, 2011, I posted DE-CODER RINGS (1 of 2), which confirms that under the U.S. Code, images such as Barack Obama’s COLB appearing on his web site “Fight the Smears,” satisfy the expenditure disclosure requirements of an electronic political advertising campaign. Here is an excerpt from that post.

Here is just a partial index for TITLE 2 > CHAPTER 14 > SUBCHAPTER I, dealing with federal campaign funds.

DISCLOSURE OF FEDERAL CAMPAIGN FUNDS

  • § 441d. Publication and distribution of statements and solicitations

(a) Identification of funding and authorizing sources

Whenever a political committee makes a disbursement for the purpose of financing any communication through any broadcasting station, newspaper, magazine, outdoor advertising facility, mailing, or any other type of general public political advertising, or whenever any person makes a disbursement for the purpose of financing communications expressly advocating the election or defeat of a clearly identified candidate, or solicits any contribution through any broadcasting station, newspaper, magazine, outdoor advertising facility, mailing, or any other type of general public political advertising or makes a disbursement for an electioneering communication (as defined in section 434 (f)(3) of this title), such communication—
(1) if paid for and authorized by a candidate, an authorized political committee of a candidate, or its agents, shall clearly state that the communication has been paid for by such authorized political committee, or [1]
(2) if paid for by other persons but authorized by a candidate, an authorized political committee of a candidate, or its agents, shall clearly state that the communication is paid for by such other persons and authorized by such authorized political committee; [1]
(3) if not authorized by a candidate, an authorized political committee of a candidate, or its agents, shall clearly state the name and permanent street address, telephone number, or World Wide Web address of the person who paid for the communication and state that the communication is not authorized by any candidate or candidate’s committee. (Emphasis added by jbjd.)

This was followed on January 12 by DE-CODER RINGS (2 of 2), which discussed the criminal implications of producing and distributing electronic images, such as that COLB, on campaign sites; but pretending, these are ‘the real thing.’ Here is a snippet from that article.

Here is just a partial index for TITLE 18 > PART I (CRIMES) > CHAPTER 47, FRAUD AND FALSE STATEMENTS.  (We will only use Part 1 for this analysis but here is a link to Part II, FYI.  PART II—CRIMINAL PROCEDURE (§§ 3001—3771).)

But to answer the question concerning the legality of the  FTS COLB under the U.S. Code, we will be concentrating primarily on section 1028.

§ 1028. Fraud and related activity in connection with identification documents, authentication features, and information

(a) Whoever, in a circumstance described in subsection (c) of this section—

(1) knowingly and without lawful authority produces an identification document, authentication feature, or a false identification document;

(2) knowingly transfers an identification document, authentication feature, or a false identification document knowing that such document or feature was stolen or produced without lawful authority;

(4) knowingly possesses an identification document (other than one issued lawfully for the use of the possessor), authentication feature, or a false identification document, with the intent such document or feature be used to defraud the United States;

(7) knowingly transfers, possesses, or uses, without lawful authority, a means of identification of another person with the intent to commit, or to aid or abet, or in connection with, any unlawful activity that constitutes a violation of Federal law, or that constitutes a felony under any applicable State or local law;

shall be punished as provided in subsection (b) of this section.

(c) The circumstance referred to in subsection (a) of this section is that—

(1) the identification document, authentication feature, or false identification document is or appears to be issued by or under the authority of the United States or a sponsoring entity of an event designated as a special event of national significance or the document-making implement is designed or suited for making such an identification document, authentication feature, or false identification document;

(2) the offense is an offense under subsection (a)(4) of this section; or

(3) either—

(A) the production, transfer, possession, or use prohibited by this section is in or affects interstate or foreign commerce, including the transfer of a document by electronic means; or

(B) the means of identification, identification document, false identification document, or document-making implement is transported in the mail in the course of the production, transfer, possession, or use prohibited by this section.

(d) In this section and section 1028A

(1) the term “authentication feature” means any hologram, watermark, certification, symbol, code, image, sequence of numbers or letters, or other feature that either individually or in combination with another feature is used by the issuing authority on an identification document, document-making implement, or means of identification to determine if the document is counterfeit, altered, or otherwise falsified;

(2) the term “document-making implement” means any implement, impression, template, computer file, computer disc, electronic device, or computer hardware or software, that is specifically configured or primarily used for making an identification document, a false identification document, or another document-making implement;

(3) the term “identification document” means a document made or issued by or under the authority of the United States Government, a State, political subdivision of a State, a sponsoring entity of an event designated as a special event of national significance, a foreign government, political subdivision of a foreign government, an international governmental or an international quasi-governmental organization which, when completed with information concerning a particular individual, is of a type intended or commonly accepted for the purpose of identification of individuals

(4) the term “false identification document” means a document of a type intended or commonly accepted for the purposes of identification of individuals that—

(A) is not issued by or under the authority of a governmental entity or was issued under the authority of a governmental entity but was subsequently altered for purposes of deceit; and

(B) appears to be issued by or under the authority of the United States Government, a State, a political subdivision of a State, a sponsoring entity of an event designated by the President as a special event of national significance, a foreign government, a political subdivision of a foreign government, or an international governmental or quasi-governmental organization;

(5) the term “false authentication feature” means an authentication feature that—

(A) is genuine in origin, but, without the authorization of the issuing authority, has been tampered with or altered for purposes of deceit;

(B) is genuine, but has been distributed, or is intended for distribution, without the authorization of the issuing authority and not in connection with a lawfully made identification document, document-making implement, or means of identification to which such authentication feature is intended to be affixed or embedded by the respective issuing authority; or

(C) appears to be genuine, but is not;

(6) the term “issuing authority”—

(A) means any governmental entity or agency that is authorized to issue identification documents, means of identification, or authentication features; and

(B) includes the United States Government, a State, a political subdivision of a State, a sponsoring entity of an event designated by the President as a special event of national significance, a foreign government, a political subdivision of a foreign government, or an international government or quasi-governmental organization;

(7) the term “means of identification” means any name or number that may be used, alone or in conjunction with any other information, to identify a specific individual, including any—

(A) name, social security number, date of birth, official State or government issued driver’s license or identification number, alien registration number, government passport number, employer or taxpayer identification number;

(C) unique electronic identification number, address, or routing code; or

(D) telecommunication identifying information or access device (as defined in section 1029 (e));

(9) the term “produce” includes alter, authenticate, or assemble;

(10) the term “transfer” includes selecting an identification document, false identification document, or document-making implement and placing or directing the placement of such identification document, false identification document, or document-making implement on an online location where it is available to others;

(11) the term “State” includes any State of the United States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and any other commonwealth, possession, or territory of the United States; and

(12) the term “traffic” means—

(A) to transport, transfer, or otherwise dispose of, to another, as consideration for anything of value; or

(B) to make or obtain control of with intent to so transport, transfer, or otherwise dispose of.

(f) Attempt and Conspiracy.— Any person who attempts or conspires to commit any offense under this section shall be subject to the same penalties as those prescribed for the offense, the commission of which was the object of the attempt or conspiracy.

On January 24, I posted HOW to WRITE SMART CANDIDATE ELIGIBILITY LAWS in your STATE (and make applying to get on the ballot harder than applying to get into Harvard). Here is an excerpt from that seminal article, in which I warn voters against accepting as true any candidate’s self-authentication to appear on the ballot. (This also contains a link to a comment in which I issued this same warning, more than 1 year earlier.)

5. NO MECHANISM INTENDED TO ESTABLISH ONLY ELIGIBLE CANDIDATES WILL BE ELECTED PRESIDENT WILL SUCCEED, WHICH RELIES ON CANDIDATE SELF-AUTHENTICATION. This has always seemed to me to be self-explanatory.

I refuse to focus on BO to establish HIS OWN eligibility. On FTS, the web site he started and for which he paid before becoming the D Corporation nominee for POTUS; he posted the COLB he said is an official document, which proves he is eligible for POTUS. ADMINISTRATOR

2010/01/05 at 20:33

In other words, stop asking Obama or anyone acting on his behalf but not in an official capacity; to get the man to produce anything! And do not under any circumstances accept as true, any document or facsimile any of these representatives not acting as the “issuing authority” introduces and claims is real! 

Apparently, the usual “jbjd” readers hoping to hone their civics educations were not the only ones listening.

To see how that April 27, 2011 launch of the long form image of President Obama’s birth certificate conformed to these requirements of the U.S. Code with respect to campaign advertising and, at this same time, skirted criminal sanctions for document fraud; you can start by looking at the press gaggle that was held that morning. As no cameras or recording devices were allowed, I relied on this press release by WH Press Secretary Jay Carney, issued at 8:48 that morning and posted on the WhiteHouse.gov blog; to memorialize the scene. (Since I will only reference Mr. Carney’s release; after you read my article, I urge you to follow up by reading his, to see for yourself how the fact pattern spelled out in the U.S. Code, fits.)

Attending the early morning press gaggle were Carney; WH Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer; and WH Counsel Bob Bauer. First, a note about Mr. Bauer, who would leave that job in June 2011, 1 month after the long form launch.

President Barack Obama’s top lawyer at the White House, Bob Bauer, is quitting to return to his political law practice and represent Obama as his personal attorney and counsel to his re-election campaign….Bauer, a specialist in campaign finance, election law and ethics, is returning to the role as campaign counsel that he held when Obama ran for the presidency in 2008….

Bauer has been part of Obama’s circle since Obama was a freshman senator in Washington. He has long been a go-to lawyer for Democrats and is married to Anita Dunn, a Democratic operative who formerly served as Obama’s communications director…. He will also serve as counsel to the Democratic National Committee.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/06/02/bob-bauer-resigns-white-house-counsel_n_870290.html

And this, from Perkins Coie.

Bob returned to the firm after a period of service to President Barack Obama as his White House Counsel from December of 2009 until June of 2011.  He is now General Counsel to the President’s re-election committee, to Obama for America, and General Counsel to the Democratic National Committee.

http://www.perkinscoie.com/rbauer/

Now, from the gaggle. (My editorial comments appear in orange. These are not intended to be exhaustive; I could have colored the whole exchange! Besides, once you get the hang of interpreting ‘Obama-speak’; you will be able to de-construct these remarks, on your own.)

MR. PFEIFFER:

In 2008 (the copyright date in the in the footer of FTS is 2007), in response to media inquiries, the President’s campaign (in June 2008, U.S. Senator Barack Obama was only the D Party Presidential nominee wannabe; and the image posted on his FTS web site, which was clearly marked “PAID FOR BY BARACK OBAMA, per campaign expenditure laws) requested his birth certificate from the state of Hawaii.  We (the nominee’s campaign) received that document; we (the campaign) posted it on the website (FTS). That document was then inspected by independent fact checkers (lay staffers employed by Annenberg Political Fact Check), who came to the campaign headquarters and inspected the document — independent fact checkers did, and declared that it was proof positive that the President was born in Hawaii.

That essentially — for those of you who followed the campaign closely know that solved the issue.  We didn’t spend any time talking about this after that….There may have been some very fringe discussion out there, but as a campaign issue it was settled and it was —

Q    When you posted this did you post the other side of it where the signature is?

MR. PFEIFFER:  Yes.

Q    Because it is not here and that’s been an issue.

MR. PFEIFFER:  We posted both sides and when it was looked at it was looked at by — the fact checkers came to headquarters and actually examined the document we had.

That settled the issue.  In recent weeks, the issue has risen again as some folks have begun raising a question about the original — about the long-form birth certificate you now have in front of you.  And Bob will explain why — the extraordinary steps we (the President’s 2012 re-election campaign) had to take to receive that and the legal restraints that are in place there.

But it became an issue again.  …  And the President believed that it was becoming a distraction from the major issues we’re having in this country. …  And it was really a distraction. … That really struck the President, led him to ask his counsel to look into whether we could ask the state of Hawaii to release the long-form certificate, which is not something they generally do. (It’s not clear to me from Pfeiffer’s reference whom the President asked to look into this matter, since he uses no names. It’s not even clear whether by “counsel” he meant, lawyer or advisor. But, technically, WH Counsel Bauer represents the Office and not the man and so, is properly referred to as “WH Counsel.”)* And he did that despite the fact that it probably was not in his long-term — it would have been in his — probably in his long-term political interests to allow this birther debate to dominate discussion in the Republican Party for months to come.  But he thought even though it might have been good politics, he thought it was bad for the country.  And so he asked counsel (again, I don’t know to which counsel this refers) to look into this. *(Here’s a good article on the sometimes murky role of WH Counsel. White House Lawyer Role Faces Test.)

And now I’ll have Bob explain that, and then we’ll take your questions.

MR. CARNEY:  I just want to — sorry, I meant to mention at the top, as some of you may have seen, the President will be coming to the briefing room at 9:45 a.m., making a brief statement about this — not taking questions, but just wanted to let you know.

MR. PFEIFFER:  And he will use this as an opportunity to make a larger point about what this debate says about our politics.

Go ahead, Bob.

MR. BAUER:  Early last week the decision was made to review the legal basis for seeking a waiver from the longstanding prohibition in the state Department of Health on releasing the long-form birth certificate.  And so we undertook a legal analysis and determined a waiver request could be made that we had the grounds upon which to make that request. (Based on several descriptions of the job responsibilities of WH Counsel; it is totally appropriate for him to advise the President as to the legality of his conduct.)

And by Thursday of last week, I spoke to private counsel to the President and asked her to contact the State Department of Health and to have a conversation about any requirements, further requirements, that they thought we (meaning, anyone associated with this ploy) had to satisfy to lodge that waiver request (and simultaneously avoid breaking the law).  She had that conversation with the state Department of Health on Thursday — counsel in question is Judy Corley at the law firm of Perkins Coie, (the law firm in which I was a partner before coming here and to which I will return shortly) and you have a copy of the letter she subsequently sent to the department with the President’s written request.

The department outlined the requirements for the President to make this request.  He signed a letter making that request on Friday afternoon upon returning from the West Coast.  And private counsel (presumably, he mean Ms. Corley) forwarded his written request — written, signed request — along with a letter from counsel (okay, I give up, I have no idea whom he means here), to the state Department of Health on Friday.

The department, as I understood it (plausible deniability here), after reviewing the law and reviewing the grounds asserted in the request, came to the conclusion that a waiver could be appropriately granted.  We (those of us perpetrating this fraud, excluding the President) were advised that the long-form birth certificate (mock-up) could be copied and made available to us as early as Monday, April 25th — the day before yesterday.  And we made arrangements for counsel to travel to Honolulu to pick it up and it was returned to the White House yesterday afternoon. (He keeps referring to the document as “it” but, in the letter provided to reporters, the President requested and received 2 copies of his long-form birth certificate, both certified.) (According to HI DoH instructions posted below, only 1 vital record per request!)

Let me emphasize again, there is a specific statute that governs access to and inspection of vital records in the state of Hawaii (as there is in every state)**.  The birth certificate that we posted online is, in fact, and always has been, and remains, the (facsimile of a) legal birth certificate of the President (or anyone else) that would be used for all legal purposes that any resident of Hawaii would want to use a birth certificate for (and which could be used for that purpose if appropriately presented, for example, if displaying the official seal or, unaltered in any way).

However, there is legal authority in the department to make exceptions to the general policy on not releasing the long-form birth certificate.  The policy in question, by the way, on non-release has been in effect since the mid-1980s, I understand.  So while I cannot tell you what the entire history of exceptions has been, (for effect, I will nonetheless speculate) it is a limited one. This is one of very few that I understand have been granted for the reasons set out in private counsel’s letter (id.).

MR. PFEIFFER:  We’ll be happy to take some questions.

Q    I guess I just want to make sure that we’re clear on this.  Even though this one says “certificate of live birth” on here, this is different than the other certificate of live birth that we’ve seen?

MR. PFEIFFER:  Yes.  The second page there is the one that was posted on the Internet.

Q    Okay.

MR. PFEIFFER:  And that is a copy of the one that has been kept at the Hawaii Department of Health.

Q    Okay.  And this is the one that would be referred to — that people have been asking for that is the birth certificate?

MR. PFEIFFER:  They are both — the second one is the birth certificate.  The one on the top is what is referred to as the long-form birth certificate.  As you can see — and Bob can walk you through it (again, doesn’t take a lawyer to explain this obvious difference between a certificate and a certification but it does add an official imprimatur to the ruse) — it contains some additional information that is not on the second page, which was the birth certificate which was released during the campaign.

If you could just explain the difference.

MR. BAUER:  There’s a difference between a certificate and a certification.  The certification is simply a verification of certain information that’s in the original birth certificate.  The birth certificate, as you can see, has signatures at the bottom from the attending physician, the local registrar, who essentially oversees the maintenance of the records.  It contains some additional information also — that is to say, the original birth certificate — it contains some additional information like the ages of the parents, birthplaces, residence, street address, the name of the hospital.

The core information that’s required for legal purposes and that is put into the actual certification that’s a computer-generated document, which we (the members of then U.S. Senator Barack Obama’s 2008 Presidential preference primary campaign) posted in 2008, that information is abstracted, if you will, from the original birth certificate, put into the computerized short-form certification, and made available to Hawaiian residents at their request.

So the long form, which is a certificate, has more information, but the short form has the information that’s legally sufficient for all the relevant purposes.

Q    This first one has never been released publicly, correct?

MR. BAUER:  That’s correct.  It is in a bound volume in the records at the state Department of Health in Hawaii.

Q    Bob, can you explain why President Obama let this drag on for four years?  Was it Donald Trump that prompted you to issue this?

MR. BAUER:  I’ll let Dan —

MR. PFEIFFER:  Sure.

Q    I know you expected that question, right?  (Laughter.)
MR. PFEIFFER:  He even said you would be the one who would ask it.  (Laughter.)

I don’t think this dragged on for four years because this was a resolved — for those of you who remember the campaign, this issue was resolved in 2008.  And it has not been an issue, none of you have asked about it, called about it, reported on it until the last few weeks.

And as I said earlier, it probably would have been — a lot of the pundits out there have talked about the fact that this whole birther debate has been really bad for the Republican Party and would probably be good for the President politically.  But despite that, the President, as I said, was struck by how this was crowding out the debate, particularly around the budget, on important issues, and was an example of the sort of sideshows that our politics focuses on instead of the real challenges that we have to confront as a country.

And so that’s why he made this decision now, because it became an issue that transcended sort of this — it essentially was something that was talked about, as I said, from the nether regions of the Internet onto mainstream network newscasts.  In fact, Jay has been asked about this just yesterday in this room.

Q    So I guess the implication is that you did get political advantage by having not released this until today, over the course of the last four years?

MR. PFEIFFER:  There has been — no one that I can recall actually asked us to — we were asked to release the President’s birth certificate in 2008.  We did that.  And then no one — it never — up until a few weeks ago, there was never an issue about that that wasn’t the birth certificate from any credible individual or media outlet.  And it hasn’t been until — I mean, Jay was asked about this yesterday —

Q    When you say that, you mean certification — you released the certification?

MR. PFEIFFER:  When any Hawaiian wants — requests their birth certificate because they want to get a driver’s license, they want to get a passport, they do exactly what the President did in 2008.  And that’s what that is.  And we released that.  And that’s what any Hawaiian would do to release their birth certificate.  And that was good enough for everyone until very recently this became a question again.  And so the President made this decision.  He’ll talk to you more about his thinking on that.

Q    And this is going to sound — I mean, you can just anticipate what people are going to — remain unconvinced.  They’re going to say that this is just a photocopy of a piece of paper (since that is what this is), you could have typed anything in there.  Will the actual certificate be on display or viewable at any — (laughter.)

Q    Will the President be holding it?

MR. PFEIFFER:  He will not, and I will not leave it here for him to do so.  But it will — the State Department of Health in Hawaii will obviously attest that that is a — what they have on file.  As Bob said, it’s in a book in Hawaii.

MR. BAUER:  And you’ll see the letter from the director of the Health Department that states (“that” here refers to the letter, as in, “the letter states” and not, “the director of the Health Department states…”) that she oversaw the copy and is attesting to —

Q    But do you understand that this could quiet the conspiracy theorists?

MR. PFEIFFER:  There will always be some selection of people who will believe something, and that’s not the issue.  The issue is that this is not a discussion that is just happening among conspiracy theorists.  It’s happening here in this room; it’s happening on all of the networks.  And it’s something that, as I said, every major political figure of both parties who’s actually out trying to talk about real issues is asked about this by the media.  And so the President decided to release this.  And I’ll leave it to others to decide whether there’s still — there will be some who still have a different — have a conspiracy about this.

Q    You’ve got two certified copies, according to this study.  You have these physical —

MR. PFEIFFER:  Yes.  I showed you one.  Just one.

Q    You showed us a photocopy of one.

MR. PFEIFFER:  No, I showed you —

Q    Does that have a stamp? (Apparently, the copy distributed to this reporter did not.)

MR. PFEIFFER:  It has a seal on it.

Q    Why does this rise to the level of a presidential statement?

MR. PFEIFFER:  The President — this in itself — when you hear the President I think you’ll understand the point he’s making.  That will be in not too long.

Q    Did the President change his own mind about this?  In other words, was he advocating during the campaign let’s just put it out there and get it over with, or was this an internal shift in thinking based — in other words, was it the President who steadfastly during the campaign said this is ridiculous, I don’t want to give this any more ground, and has now changed his mind? Or is this the —

MR. PFEIFFER:  Let’s be very clear.  You were there for the campaign.  There was never a question about the original birth certificate during the campaign.  It was a settled issue.  (HA HA HA HA HA) I was there (in 2007)  for the original decision to release the birth certificate (if we couldn’t steal the primary before people began asking questions about the candidate’s Constitutional eligibility for office). I was there (in June 2008) when we posted it online (because questions about his eligibility threatened to kill his chances at the nomination).  I’m not sure I even knew there was an original one that was different than the one we posted online because it wasn’t an issue.  (Liar liar, pants on fire.) So it wasn’t like — let’s be very clear.  We were asked for the President’s birth certificate in 2008; we released the President’s birth certificate; and it was done.  That was it.

And so there hasn’t been a discussion about this other document for years.  It’s only been in the last few weeks.  And so to your second question, the President decided to do this and he’ll talk about this when he gets here — decided to do it at the timeline that Bob (Bauer, the campaign law expert and WH Counsel) laid out (so as to protect everyone involved in this farce from criminal liability) because it was a — this was a sideshow that was distracting from the real challenges that we’re facing.

It’s not just a sideshow for him; it’s a sideshow for our entire politics (meaning, our re-election campaign) that have become focused on this.

Q    Not to give Donald Trump more publicity than he has, but is he the person who sort of — sort of that bridge between what you’re calling a fringe and the mainstream?  Do you think that he’s the reason why this tripped the switch to a level where you now have to deal with something you thought was dealt with?

MR. PFEIFFER:  It’s not for me to say why mainstream media organizations began to cover this debate.  They’ll have to answer that for themselves.

Q    Dan, was there a debate about whether or not this deserved being discussed by the White House, whether or not — and I’m going back to the birth certificate.  I lose points, I understand.  But was there debate about whether or not this was worthy of the White House?

MR. PFEIFFER:  The point I’d make is that we weren’t the ones who — we’re not the first ones to bring this up in this room.  Jay has been asked questions about this; the President has been asked about it in media interviews.  And so that wasn’t a decision that we made, and the President made the decision to do this and he made the decision to — and when he comes down here this morning he’ll talk to you about why he thinks there’s an important point to be made here.

Q    Is there a concern that more and more people were actually starting to believe its sideshow — I mean, people have been asking about —

MR. CARNEY:  I will let the President speak for himself, but what Dan was saying and I think is important is that the issue here is that the President feels that this was bad for the country; that it’s not healthy for our political debate, when we have so many important issues that Americans care about, that affect their lives, to be drawn into sideshows about fallacies that have been disproven with the full weight of a legal document for several years.

So, again, as Dan said, and a lot of political pundits have said, you could say that it would be good politics, smart politics, for the President to let this play out.  He cares more about what’s good for the country.  He wants the debate on the issues.  He wants the focus on the issues that Americans care about.

Q    Just quickly, back on the birth certificate, yesterday you said this was a settled issue.  So —

MR. CARNEY:  Well, as Dan said, again, it has been a settled issue.

MR. PFEIFFER:  From a factual point of view, it’s absolutely a settled issue.  But the fact that it was a settled issue did not keep it from becoming a major part of the political discussion in this town for the last several weeks here.  So there’s absolutely no question that what the President released in 2008 was his birth certificate and answered that question, and many of your organizations have done excellent reporting which proved that to be the case.  But it continued; the President thought it was a sideshow and chose to take this step today for the reasons Bob laid out.

Q    Aside from the policy distractions that was presented, did you have some concern because it was sort of reaching back into the mainstream news coverage that this could become a factor in the 2012 election with centrist voters?

MR. PFEIFFER:  No.

Q    Just to clarify what this document is —

MR. PFEIFFER:  This is the — the letter first and the two certified copies — this is one of those.  This is the same thing you have a copy of as the first page of your packet.

Q    How did it get here?

MR. PFEIFFER:  As Bob said, it arrived by plane — the President’s personal counsel went to Hawaii and brought it back and we got it last night.

Q    Last night?

MR. PFEIFFER:  Last night.

Q    What time?

MR. PFEIFFER:  Between 4:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m.

Q    When did you decide to do this gaggle?

MR. PFEIFFER:  What’s that?

Q    When was this gaggle put on — when was this planned?

MR. PFEIFFER:  Whatever time you received your guidance suggesting that it would be “this time tomorrow morning.”

Q    Are these letters supposed to demonstrate the legal steps that were involved in releasing it to the White House counsel?

MR. BAUER:  The letters that you have, the personal request from the President, along with the accompanying letter from private counsel, is merely meant to document the legal path to getting the waiver of that policy so we could get the long-form certificate (as opposed to documenting an actual path undertaken to obtain a bona fide waiver from Director Fuddy on the date in the letter, resulting in her office’s production of a facsimile of a record on file with her office, evidencing Barack Obama was born in HI).

Q    The waiver of Hawaii state government policy?

MR. BAUER:  Right.  The non-release of the long-form certificate, which has been in effect since the 1980s — a natural question would have been, well, what did you do to obtain the waiver, and those letters represent the request.

Q    Well, isn’t it true that anybody who was born in Hawaii can write this letter?  (Yes; of course.) I mean, that’s all there is to the waiver process?

MR. BAUER:  No.  Let me just explain once again because I also noticed, by the way, in one report already the wrong certificate was actually posted on the website.  The certificate with the signatures at the bottom — and that’s a key difference between the short form and the long form — the long form has signatures at the bottom from the attending physician, the local registrar, and the mother, is the original birth certificate, which sits in a bound volume in the State Department of Health.

The short from is a computerized abstract, and that’s the legal birth certificate we requested in 2008 and that Hawaiians are entitled to.  Since the mid-1980s, the State Department of Health, for administrative reasons, only provides to people who request their birth certificate the short form.  They do not provide the long form.

So in order for us to obtain the long form, we had to have a waiver (which, as you astutely pointed out, only required writing the letter requesting that waiver).  We had to actually determine that there was a legal basis for providing it, and then ask them to exercise their authority to provide us with the long form.  The steps required to accomplish that were a letter from the person with the direct and vital interest — the President — so you have a letter from the President (with no file reference code for document processing, archiving, or retrieval) , and then there was an accompanying letter from counsel basically formalizing the request.  (I cannot figure out the angle on that one. Obviously, unless the President, here, the Requestor of the Record, has been adjudged to be mentally incompetent and placed under the guardianship of Attorney Corley, he doesn’t need her to ‘formalize’ anything! Maybe Bauer is still trying to fool reporters into believing getting the waiver so as to obtain a certified copy of a long form birth certificate is a big deal. Ideas?) So the reason we included that is that those were legal steps we took to obtain the long form by way of this waiver.

Q    Do we have the letter from the President —

MR. BAUER:  It’s in the packet.

Q    And you went to Hawaii?

MR. BAUER:  I did not go to Hawaii.  The counsel, Judy Corley, who signed the — the President’s personal counsel at Perkins Coie, Judy Corley, whose letter — signed letter of request is in your packet, traveled to Honolulu and picked up the birth certificate. (Notice that now, he manages albeit awkwardly, to avoid saying either, ‘Ms. Corley signed the letter,’ or ‘Ms. Corley made this request to the HI DoH.’ Because saying that the President’s lawyer did these things is tantamount to saying, the President did these things. And as you just read, when it comes to the President and these long form shenanigans; the campaign, under the watchful eye of WH Counsel Bauer, is preserving a ‘hands off’ approach.) (434 (f)(3) of TITLE 2 > CHAPTER 14 > SUBCHAPTER I, DISCLOSURE OF FEDERAL CAMPAIGN FUNDS, is worth a read. While I didn’t use that section of campaign finance laws with respect to the FTS web site; it might apply here, to the cost of that campaign trip to HI to retrieve the campaign document. As for the gaggle being a “campaign communication,” well, since there is no record; and since otherwise ‘official’ topics were also discussed, by non-campaign staff; I am not sure what approach the DoJ would take for the purpose of determining whether illegal campaigning was going on from the WH.)

Thanks.END              9:18 A.M. EDT

** According to the web site of the HI DoH, here’s how to request certified copies of vital information.

How to Apply for Certified Copies of Vital Records

What Information You Should Be Prepared to Provide

An applicant/requestor must provide the information needed to 1) establish his/her direct and tangible interest in the record and 2) locate the desired record. This will normally include:

  • Applicant’s name, address, and telephone number(s);
  • Applicant’s relationship to the person named on the certificate;
  • Reason why you are requesting the certificate;
  • Full name(s) as listed on the certificate; (not provided)
  • The certificate’s file number (if known); (not provided)
  • Month, day, and year of the event; (not provided) and
  • City or town and the island where the event occurred. (not provided)
  • For birth certificates, also provide the full name of the father and the full maiden name of the mother. (not provided)
  • If you are applying for a certificate on behalf of someone else, you must provide an original letter signed by that person authorizing the release of their certificate to you and a photocopy of that person’s valid government-issued photo ID. (not provided)
  • Valid government-issued photo ID. (not provided)

(H/T azgo)

On the other hand, maybe all you want is a letter.

Letters of Verification

Letters of verification may be issued in lieu of certified copies (HRS §338-14.3). This document verifies the existence of a birth/death/civil union/marriage/divorce certificate on file with the Department of Health and any other information that the applicant provides to be verified relating to the vital event. (For example, that a certain named individual was born on a certain date at a certain place.) The verification process will not, however, disclose information about the vital event contained within the certificate that is unknown to and not provided by the applicant in the request.

Letters of verification are requested in similar fashion and using the same request forms as for certified copies.

The fee for a letter of verification is $5 per letter.

Either way, you can download an application form directly from the site.

Application Forms

http://hawaii.gov/health/vital-records/vital-records/vital_records.html

Thus, summing up these first 3 articles in the series, by clearly identifying both orally and in writing, the ‘birth’ documents distributed at the press gaggle and displayed on the WhiteHouse.gov blog are part of the “campaign”; by explicitly stating no public funds were expended in obtaining these documents; by making sure that any ‘official (looking)’ seal from the HI DoH did not appear on copies of documents distributed to the public; by distributing the documents to the public but not to a government official under the guise, this was a bona fide representation of the ‘facts’ contained therein; and by separating the campaign function from the traditional function of the Executive branch; and by transporting the false document via airplane instead of the U.S. mail; President Obama’s team likely skirted criminal violations of both campaign expenditure and public records laws.

Or did they…

(The next article in the series focuses on President Obama’s remarks immediately following this press gaggle; and the nature of comments, both oral and written, with respect to the President’s vital records, attributed over time to state of HI employees.)

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Freedom costs.

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WHY PRESIDENT OBAMA WAITED until APRIL 27, 2011 to RELEASE a FACSIMILE of his LONG FORM BIRTH CERTIFICATE

March 18, 2012

© 2012 jbjd

For my next few articles, I will focus on the elusive nature of paid political advertising campaigns. First, a riddle.

Why did President Obama wait until April 27, 2011 to release a facsimile of his long form birth certificate indicating he was born in Hawaii?

As you will see, the answer to each of these questions – why release and why release now – depends on whom you ask.

On April 27, 2011 Ben Smith at Politico posts this rationale he claims was emailed to him by a White House official (although, for some reason, Mr. Smith produces neither the name of the sender of the purported email nor an image of the email which was purportedly sent), answering both questions:

The day was chosen by when they provided it to us, it got here last night, so our belief was we had to do it today. Petraues et al is tomorrow’s announcement

I am not going to argue the politics of doing this are good — they probably aren’t. Allowing the GOP primary to devolve into birther mania probably would be better, but the president felt strongly that this was bad for the country

Why today?

That same day, John McCormack at the Weekly Standard, referencing Smith’s post, adds the following analysis:

Team Obama thought the “birther issue” was politically advantageous for them. By refusing to release the document, they gave the conspiracy theory just enough oxygen to keep it alive and make Republicans look crazy when asked about it by their constituents (obviously, the most die-hard “birthers” will summarily call the “long-form” certificate a forgery or find other excuses to keep their fevered dreams alive).

Why Did Obama Wait Until Today to Release His Long-Form Birth Certificate?

Huffington Post’s Sam Stein reported at 10:13 AM (ET) on the details of the birth certificate launch, but did not speculate as to the answer to either question:

The move came as a surprise to the press corps, many of whom had not shown up for Wednesday’s early-morning White House briefing. By the time word had spread that Obama would be making a 9:45 a.m. statement on the matter, however, the top anchors at all the networks had scurried into the briefing room.

Last Friday, the president himself wrote Loretta J. Fuddy, the director of health at the State of Hawaii, requesting “two certified copies of my original certificate of live birth.” Fuddy complied. Shortly thereafter, the president’s counsel, Judith Corley of the firm Perkins Coie, flew to Hawaii to pick up two copies of the form. The trip was not taxpayer funded but, rather, paid out of the president’s personal account. Corley returned on Tuesday at roughly 4 p.m. with the copies. The White House announced a “morning gaggle” for reporters shortly thereafter. One aide explained that they did not want to “hold” on to the documents for release on a later date.

Many members of the press confessed to being “stunned” as it became clear what was about to be discussed. White House press assistants handed out a six-page stapled packet of photocopies showing the new and old birth certificates as well as the White House’s legal correspondence with Hawaii’s Department of Health.

Obama Birth Certificate Released By White House (PHOTO)

Michael A. Memoli authored more than 1 article for the LA Times on that day. Here’s the one that, being more in line with the underlying theme of this (series of) article(s), most interested me:

Reporting from Washington — The White House released President Obama’s long-form birth certificate to reporters on Wednesday, an extraordinary step in reaction to renewed questions from critics about whether he was born in Hawaii.

The document also was posted on the White House website. President Obama is expected to speak on the subject from the White House briefing room later Wednesday morning. (Here, Memoli clearly indicates that, being a reporter, he received a copy of the President’s long form birth certificate and posted this article before the President spoke. But Sam Stein at HuffPo makes clear in the article he posted immediately after the President’s briefing room launch, that “top anchors at all the networks [who] had scurried into the briefing room” received both the President’s spin and the document he spun, contemporaneously. And that “members of the press [in the briefing room] confessed to being “stunned” as it became clear what was about to be discussed.”)

Amid questions during Obama’s 2008 run for the White House, his campaign released a certificate of live birth to verify he was a native-born citizen, a constitutional requirement of the office. (No; the Constitutional requirement is “natural born citizen”; and he released a “Certification,” not a certificate. It said so right on the mock-up.) So-called “birther” critics called the document insufficient, however, and conspiracy theories about the president’s birth have continued.

Administration officials said they felt compelled to release additional documentation because the continued “distraction” was harmful for the country.

“It may have been good politics and good TV, but it was bad for the American people and distracting from the many challenges we face as a country,” Dan Pfeiffer, White House communications director, wrote on the White House’s blog.

To receive the long-form document, the president personally sent a request to the Hawaii Department of Health. White House counsel Robert F. Bauer traveled to the state to retrieve it. (According to the blog, Attorney Judith Corley of Perkins Coie, traveled to HI for that purpose.)

The state of Hawaii has faced a regular barrage of requests for information about Obama’s birth, but privacy rules barred them from releasing the full birth certificate. The White House said the state granted this exception “in part because of the tremendous volume of requests they had been getting.”

The release comes on the same day that real estate mogul Donald Trump, who has put questions about Obama’s birthplace front and center in recent weeks, travels to New Hampshire as he considers a presidential campaign of his own. (More importantly, this release coincides with the President’s previously scheduled taping of the Oprah Winfrey Show, in Chicago, immediately after this press conference. Obamas Visit Oprah in Chicago Wednesday)

White House releases long-form Obama birth certificate

So, what is my answer to the riddle, why did President Obama wait until April 27, 2011 to release a facsimile of his long form birth certificate? Because both the purported request to HI officials for his long form birth certificate; and the release of that facsimile of his long form birth certificate were part of his 2012 political campaign. (That’s why Stein’s article included the disclaimer, “The trip [to HI to ‘retrieve’ those documents] was not taxpayer funded but, rather, paid out of the president’s personal account.”) And even though questions still “swirled” since he was inaugurated in 2009, that he was Constitutionally ineligible to be President; he couldn’t launch another paid political advertising campaign to counter those concerns until he was actually in another political campaign; and he only launched his 2012 re-election campaign on April 4.

And he launched the paid political ad on April 27 to coincide with his appearances on Oprah and at several high end fundraisers in NY.  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/04/27/oprah-winfrey-show-obamas_n_854232.html

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Freedom costs.


FREE SPEECH

March 11, 2012

© 2012 jbjd

By posting DE-CODER RING (1 of 2) and DE-CODER RING (2 of 2), I had hoped to forever dispel for the benefit of my readers the notion that the image of a birth certificate which appears on the web site, Fight the Smears, copyright 2007; was anything other than the focal point of a paid political ad. (Note, here I use the word “notion” as an homage to President Obama, whose use of that word I have revealed in the past, triggers in my mind the anticipation of a straw dog argument, followed immediately by a perfectly scripted response.)

As you can see, the copyright of the ad is to Barack Obama in 2007; the description of the copyrighted ad materials is “Barack Obama 2008 Presidential Campaign: Fight the Smears”; and the title of the ad campaign is “Fight the Smears: The Truth About Barack’s Birth Certificate.”

And I tried to instill the proposition that, being a political ad; all speech appearing in FTS, whether true, is protected under the 1st Amendment. https://jbjd.org/2011/01/12/de-coder-rings-2-of-2/comment-page-1/#comment-3548

But for some reason, the Washington Post appears determined to perpetuate the myth that, with respect to the nature of Mr. Obama’s FTS political ad campaign, I am wrong.

The Post keeps a political ads database, where they list more than 100 titles of campaign ads connected to Barack Obama appearing on t.v., radio, and the web, in years 2007 and 2008. Guess which one is missing?

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Freedom costs.


CONNED

March 1, 2012

©2012 jbjd

Until recently, the facts which had long ago formed my opinion of Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio were rather vague.  I recalled that while in office, he had developed policies and procedures which he intended would humiliate detainees awaiting trial in the several county jails in Maricopa County under his jurisdiction. But even unable to immediately recall the specific facts which were the basis of that opinion; my best recollection was that I had concluded he was an incompetent public official who, assuming his election to the office of Sheriff by the citizens of Maricopa County resulted from a lawful process; should nonetheless be removed from office by appropriate state or federal authorities.

Recently, I learned that, some months ago, Mr. Arpaio had initiated some kind of investigation into the authenticity of the birth certificate released by President Obama in April 2011, the results of which investigation he would unveil at a press conference scheduled on March 1. Actually, a reader of this blog told me. My first thought was, ‘This guy – Arpaio – is a piece of work.’ At the same time, I was relieved to think that most of his ‘supporters’ would, at last, share my sentiment, now realizing it takes a special kind of con to both hint that the investigation he headed had uncovered shocking facts related to the authenticity of that document (which facts are now in his sole possession and are worthy of a press conference) and yet, at this same time, delay, for whatever reason, the release of these facts.

My reader asked my opinion of this latest wrinkle in the birther bonanza. I replied by predicting what would be Arpaio’s ‘magic key’ to unlocking the whole birth certificate puzzle. The reader asked whether I thought he – the reader – should send Mr. Arpaio some of the work he had completed on the nature of that same document. I said no, suggesting that his – the reader’s – work which would otherwise survive public scrutiny would be irredeemably tainted by any such association with Mr. Arpaio; and, besides, he – Arpaio – would likely steal his work.

I decided to write this article predicting what Arpaio could possibly say at the press conference he scheduled on March 1 (tomorrow). And, as a prerequisite, I began to research both the history of the sheriff’s tenure in office and, the circumstances of his latest foray into the public’s consciousness. Sadly, I discovered not only that people are actually hopefully anticipating he might dispel questions as to the Constitutional eligibility of President Obama, once and for all; but also that the same circus of characters – WND/Western Center for Journalism; and artIIsuperpac – have not only joined but also are producing the spectacle.

First, a little about the man, in his own words. I intentionally link here to the site called Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office, a ‘.org’ and not a ‘.gov site.’ excerpted immediately below.  Note the flavor of the narrative presented by Mr. Arpaio, in stark contrast to the facts contained in the additional information which follows, provided by AZ law enforcement officials; the courts; and the U.S. Department of Justice. (I have placed in ‘bold’ those items relating to topics which are further referenced below in those less fawning narratives.)

In 1992, Arpaio successfully campaigned to become the Sheriff of Maricopa County. Since then he has been reelected to an unprecedented five 4-year terms. During his tenure as Sheriff of Maricopa County, Arpaio has consistently earned high public approval ratings.

With over five decades experience in law enforcement, Arpaio knows what the public wants, “The public is my boss,” he says, “so I serve the public.” He has served them well by establishing several unique programs.

Arpaio has between 7500 – 10,000 inmates in his jail system. In August, 1993, he started the nation’s largest Tent City for convicted inmates. Two thousand convicted men and women serve their sentences in a canvas incarceration compound. It is a remarkable success story that has attracted the attention of government officials, presidential candidates, and media worldwide.

Of equal success and notoriety are his chain gangs, which contribute thousands of dollars of free labor to the community. The male chain gang, and the world’s first-ever female and juvenile chain gangs, clean streets, paint over graffiti, and bury the indigent in the county cemetery.

Also impressive are the Sheriff’s get tough policies. For example, he banned smoking, coffee, movies, pornographic magazines, and unrestricted TV in all jails. He has the cheapest meals in the U.S. too. The average meal costs between 15 and 40 cents, and inmates are fed only twice daily, to cut the labor costs of meal delivery. He even stopped serving them salt and pepper to save tax payers $20,000 a year.

Another program Arpaio is very well known for is the pink underwear he makes all inmates wear. Years ago, when the Sheriff learned that inmates were stealing jailhouse white boxers, Arpaio had all inmate underwear dyed pink for better inventory control. The same is true for the Sheriff’s handcuffs. When they started disappearing, he ordered pink handcuffs as a replacement.

Arpaio has started another controversial program on the website WWW.MCSO.org. Mugshots of all those arrested (about 300 per day) are posted on the Sheriff’s website as they are booked and processed into jail. Just under a million hits daily come into the website, making it one of the most visible law enforcement sites on the internet.

In addition to these tough measures, the Sheriff has launched rehabilitative programs like “Hard Knocks High,” the only accredited high school under a Sheriff in an American jail, and ALPHA, an anti-substance-abuse program that has greatly reduced recidivism.

As chief law enforcement officer for the county, Arpaio continues to reduce crime with hard-hitting enforcement methods. His deputies and detectives have solved several high-profile murder cases, including numerous child murders. The posse, whose ranks have increased to 3,000 members under Arpaio, is the nation’s largest volunteer posse. Posse men and women help in search and rescue and other traditional police work as well as in special operations like rounding up deadbeat parents, fighting prostitution, patrolling malls during holidays, and investigating animal cruelty complaints. The posse’s contributions are invaluable and essentially free to taxpayers.

But then, there is this article by Bill Louis, a former El Mirage assistant police chief.

Sheriff Arpaio failed victims of El Mirage, by Bill Louis,

I have first-hand knowledge of the incredible level of neglect on the part of Sheriff Joe Arpaio. I find it difficult to refrain from comment after seeing his “apology” to the victims of the dozens of serious sex crimes and child molestations that he failed to investigate in El Mirage.

His callous comment of “if there were any victims” shows his arrogance and the insincerity of his so-called apology. Arpaio knows full well there were many victims and he knows their identities. In 2008 the sheriff received a full written account of all the cases his office failed to investigate in El Mirage.

The Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office had provided police services in El Mirage for three year. In mid-2007, the new leadership of the El Mirage Police Department took over.

A sheriff’s deputy chief called then El Mirage Police Chief Mike Frazier and told him to get the evidence from the El Mirage cases out of their property impound. The deputy chief also told Frazier he was returning all the police reports (several boxes) from the time period when the Sheriff’s Office had been responsible for providing police services in El Mirage. That deputy chief told the El Mirage police administration that all the reports were “complete” and could just be “filed away.” A few weeks later the boxes of police reports were returned to El Mirage.

At that time, I was the newly hired assistant police chief. For quality control purposes I directed the El Mirage detectives to conduct a random sampling of the serious criminal cases (sex crimes and child molestations) that had been returned from Arpaio’s office. (We were already in the process of reviewing several death investigations Arpaio’s staff had mishandled.)

The cursory review showed that none of the sex crime and molesting cases had been completed. Most had not had any follow up done after the first-responder’s contact.

I ordered a full review of the returned cases. To my dismay our full audit showed that none of the cases had been completed.

We knew the task of re-investigating three years of neglected criminal cases would tax our limited El Mirage police resources. At our request, the El Mirage city manager approved special funding and we temporarily hired some retired Phoenix detectives to re-investigate the neglected cases.

After months of extra work, the El Mirage Police Department staff finally completed the re-investigation of the neglected cases. A comprehensive report was completed including an overview and summary of each case. The report included information about every victim.

This report and a cover letter were sent to Sheriff Joe Arpaio. Although this was the professional and ethical manner to handle this situation, Arpaio had the audacity to criticize the El Mirage police department for preparing this report. He chastised us for “creating a public record” of his negligence. (This is the same Joe Arpaio who publicly questioned whether there really were any victims.)

Many months after we finished re-investigating the cases an Arizona Republic reporter uncovered this negligence by Arpaio and requested a public records request for the El Mirage Police report and the letter to the sheriff. When Arpaio’s negligence on these cases was made public in a subsequent news report, Arpaio announced he was launching an “internal investigation” into the matter.

That was nearly three years ago and Arpaio apparently still has not concluded his internal investigation.

http://www.azcentral.com/members/Blog/WestValleyVoices/150373

There is also this decision in Graves v. Arpaio, handed down by the federal court in 2008. Here’s how the ACLU describes the case.

The ACLU went to trial against Arpaio in August 2008 arguing that deteriorating conditions within each of the jail’s five facilities that house pre-trial detainees – people who have been arrested but not yet tried or convicted – necessitate federal court oversight to ensure that Arpaio and other county officials maintain safe and humane conditions and provide the thousands of detainees held there basic levels of medical and mental health care.www.aclu.org/prisoners-rights/ninth-circuit-court-appeals-orders-sheriff-arpaio-fix-unconstitutional-conditions-m

(The Graves case piggy-backed onto oversight proceedings begun in 1977 with a class action alleging that the civil rights of pretrial detainees held in the Maricopa County jail system had been violated. In a decision several years in the making; the parties entered into a consent agreement with respect to pre-trial detainees, to fix condition in the jail. However, in 1998, Defendant Sheriff Joe filed suit to set aside that agreement as invalid, as a matter of law, under the 1997 federal Prison Litigation Reform Act (“PRLA”), which prohibits court oversight of ‘prisons’ absent specific findings of fact as to the conditions which violate Plaintiffs’ Constitutional and civil rights. Defendants lost that case; and appealed. This took several years. At some point, parties agreed that, the Petition to Vacate the Consent Degree would be withdrawn, without prejudice. Instead, they would engage in Discovery and then submit their proposed findings of fact to the court. If ongoing violations could be established then, these would become part of a new ‘legal’ ruling; and any conditions which were part of the earlier consent agreement but which now would not constitute violations under the new standard, would be dismissed.)

I accessed the actual decision in Graves from the web site of the National Institute of Correction:

We are an agency within the U.S. Department of Justice, Federal Bureau of Prisons. The Institute is headed by a Director appointed by the U.S. Attorney General. A 16-member Advisory Board, also appointed by the Attorney General, was established by the enabling legislation (Public Law 93-415) to provide policy direction to the Institute.

Here’s how the NIC describes the 2008 case:

ANNOTATION: These Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law and Order address the termination of prospective relief for violating the civil rights of pretrial detainees in Maricopa County jails; termination based on the Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA). Termination is granted for some provisions while other provisions remain in effect. Prospective relief is needed for: overcrowding; temperature indoors; housekeeping; health care screening and access; prescriptions; intake areas; recreation time outside; adequate food; visual observation; incident reporting; and reporting requirements.

Graves begins with this explanation.

Termination of Prospective Relief Under the PLRA

Congress enacted the PLRA to prevent federal courts from micromanaging prisons by mere consent decrees and to return control of the prison system from courts to “the elected officials accountable to the taxpayer.” Gilmore v. California, 220 F.3d 987, 996 (9th Cir. 2000). “[N]o longer may courts grant or approve relief that binds prison administrators to do more than the constitutional minimum.” Id. at 999. The PLRA requires that prospective relief regarding prison conditions “extend no further than necessary to correct the violation of the Federal right of a particular plaintiff or plaintiffs.” 18 U.S.C. §3626(a)(1). Relief must be narrowly drawn, extend no further than necessary to correct the violation, and be the least intrusive means necessary to correct the violation. Id. Further, courts must “give substantial weight to any adverse
impact on public safety or the operation of a criminal justice system caused by the relief.” Id.

Given these legal qualifiers; the court specifically found several conditions evidencing that Sheriff Arpaio was doing less than the Constitutional minimum to correct violations to Plaintiffs’ rights under both the 8th and 14th Amendments.

The Eighth Amendment requires that prisoners be confined in conditions that protect their mental and physical health and draws its meaning from evolving standards of decency that mark the progress of a maturing society. The Eighth Amendment requires that the temperature of the areas in which pretrial detainees are held or housed does not threaten their health or safety. The Eighth Amendment requires that prisoners be provided basic elements of hygiene, sanitation, and safety, including freedom from unreasonable threat of injury from fire and from vermin and rodent infestation. The Eighth Amendment requires that the Maricopa County Jails provide a system of ready access to adequate medical, dental, and mental health care; medical staff competent to examine prisoners and diagnose illnesses; timely treatment for prisoners’ medical problems or referral to others who can; and an adequate system for responding to emergencies. The Eighth Amendment requires that the Maricopa County Jails not be deliberately indifferent to prisoners’ serious medical, dental, and mental health needs, including conditions that are likely to cause serious illness and needless suffering in the
future. The Eighth Amendment requires that pretrial detainees be provided food that is adequate to maintain the pretrial detainees’ health and that is prepared under conditions that do not threaten their health and well being.

The Fourteenth Amendment requires that conditions of confinement for pretrial detainees not constitute punishment, i.e., not impose some harm that significantly exceeds the inherent discomforts of confinement and is excessive in relation to the legitimate governmental objective. The Fourteenth Amendment requires that the temperature of the areas in which pretrial detainees are held or housed must not constitute punishment. The Fourteenth Amendment requires that pretrial detainees be held and housed in conditions that do not constitute punishment, i.e., confinement conditions may be unpleasant, but not excessively unpleasant in light of the legitimate governmental objectives those conditions serve. The Fourteenth Amendment requires that Maricopa County Jails provide pretrial detainees with access to care to meet their serious medical, dental, and mental health needs, which means that in a timely manner, a pretrial detainee can be seen by a clinician, receive a professional clinical judgment, and receive care that is ordered. The Fourteenth Amendment requires that the Maricopa County Jails not withhold or delay medical, dental, or mental health care unless doing so is reasonably related to a legitimate governmental objective. Budgetary constraints do not justify delay in treatment for a serious medical need. The Fourteenth Amendment requires that the taste and appearance of food provided to pretrial detainees not constitute punishment, i.e., not be more distasteful than is inherent in institutionalized confinement.

Here are just some of those findings. (This was an 83-page decision, which I read in its entirety. I spent hours editing the excerpts below, limited to those conditions which require prospective remediation. But I wanted you to see the conditions imposed in some cases, for years, by Sheriff Arpaio on pretrial detainees, meaning, people arrested and awaiting trial, or, in other words, INNOCENT UNDER THE LAW.)

Pretrial detainees who have court appearances while housed in Maricopa County Jails are transported from a housing unit to the court holding cells located in the old Madison jail facility where they may remain for as long as eight hours in crowded, dirty conditions. Although overcrowding itself does not violate pretrial detainees’ constitutional rights, if it is not reasonably related to legitimate governmental objectives and it causes risk of harm to pretrial detainees’ safety and health, it does violate pretrial detainees’ constitutional rights.

At times, the court holding cells are so overcrowded that pretrial detainees do not have room to sit or adequate access to toilet and sink facilities.

Overcrowding in the court holding cells causes sanitation problems and health risks to pretrial detainees.

Although there is no posted maximum occupancy in the intake holding cells, the maximum number of inmates that should be held in each cell is approximately thirty to thirty-five. Often, substantially more than thirty-five pretrial detainees are held in one cell. At times, intake holding cells are so overcrowded that there is not room for all inmates to sit on benches, and at times there is not room for all inmates to sit anywhere, even on the floor. At times, inmates sleep on the concrete floor, and sometimes there is not enough room for inmates to sleep on the floor without coming into physical contact with other inmates. At times, the intake holding cells are too crowded for inmates to move to use the toilet and sink.

Ambient temperatures in some of the Towers cells and peripheral areas have exceeded 85° F. Air temperatures in excess of 85° F. greatly increase the risk of heat stroke and other heat-related illnesses for pretrial detainees who are taking psychotropic medications. Defendant Arpaio does not have a list of all pretrial detainees taking psychotropic medications and cannot readily determine where pretrial detainees taking psychotropic medications are housed. Detention officers generally do not know which pretrial detainees are taking psychotropic medications. 90. Defendant Arpaio does not ensure that pretrial detainees taking psychotropic medications are housed at temperatures that provide healthful living conditions.

Cells are not consistently cleaned and sanitized prior to occupancy by pretrial detainees thereby causing an unconstitutional health risk.

The Maricopa County Jails booked more than 93,000 pretrial detainees from June 1, 2007, through May 31, 2008. It houses approximately 8,000 pretrial detainees daily. Some pretrial detainees remain in the Maricopa County Jails for days, and others for years. Many of the pretrial detainees in the Maricopa County Jails have alcohol and drug addictions, physical injuries, and chronic diseases, such as diabetes, asthma, hypertension, seizure disorders, and Parkinson’s disease. Many pretrial detainees have physical conditions, including dental care needs, caused or exacerbated by their living conditions before incarceration, such as illegal drug use, homelessness, inadequate health care, and inadequate nutrition. It is estimated that twenty percent of the pretrial detainees housed in the Maricopa County Jails are seriously mentally ill. Many of these have schizophrenia, bipolar disease, anxiety disorders, attention deficit disorder, and other serious chronic mental illnesses.

All pretrial detainees entering the jail system, with the exception of self surrenders, are processed through the 4th Avenue jail. All incoming detainees receive a screening when they arrive and prior to booking. It takes eight minutes on average to complete this process. The intake technicians often ask pretrial detainees the screening questions very quickly in a noisy environment that lacks privacy and is not conducive to pretrial detainees giving thoughtful responses to very personal questions. Although the 4th Avenue jail has clinical facilities to allow pretrial detainees following their initial pre-intake screening to proceed to a post-intake area and have a more comprehensive evaluation done by a clinician, a secondary screening at booking often does not occur. The number of pretrial detainees who receive the more comprehensive screening is significantly less than the number of pretrial detainees with serious medical needs who are booked.

During the intake screening, health personnel are instructed to check for a history of substance abuse or intoxication, diabetic care, seizure medications, and wound care. However, the intake screening often does not capture basic and necessary information from detainees, including an adequate history from those suffering from chronic diseases.Screening also is intended to identify persons with mental illnesses, who are to be scheduled for appropriate follow-up consistent with their level of need. Mental health screening questions include mental health treatment history, prescription medications, outpatient treatment provider, history of suicide attempts and self-injury, and current thoughts of suicide, in addition to subjective observations of the pretrial detainee’s appearance and behavior noted. However, many pretrial detainees with serious mental illness are not identified and assessed by a mental health clinician during the intake process. However, incoming pretrial detainees with chronic medical problems, such as diabetes, hypertension, and HIV disease, often do not receive their medications in a timely manner. Many people do not know the name or address of their pharmacy, or they might not have a pharmacy because they were prescribed medication in prison.

Systemic deficiencies in the screening process significantly impair continuity of care and result in failure to identify pretrial detainees with immediate medical needs.

Sometimes pretrial detainees receive medical care because their family members, attorneys, or clergy have requested it. Pretrial detainees seeking medical care must complete sick call request forms and hand them to nursing staff, usually the Licensed Practical Nurse administering medications in the morning. Sick call requests are to be triaged by nurses within twenty-four hours, seven days a week, without actually seeing the pretrial detainees who have submitted the sick call requests. Although the nurses administering medications are expected to talk to pretrial detainees submitting sick call requests and to record additional information for triaging and treatment, they do not consistently do so well. Some pretrial detainees are not literate at all. They have difficulty communicating about their health care needs in writing on the sick call request forms. Pretrial detainees frequently are denied access to adequate medical, mental health, and dental care because they do not receive a timely in-person assessment of the urgency of their need for treatment.

Clinicians at the Maricopa County Jails often cannot provide a professional medical judgment because Correctional Health Services does not have a medical record and information system capable of timely providing health care professionals with the information they need to diagnose and treat pretrial detainees appropriately, including laboratory results and results of specialty consults. Correctional Health Services does not maintain a list of pretrial detainees with chronic diseases and cannot readily determine where they are housed and what medications have been prescribed for them. Correctional Health Services does not maintain a list of pretrial detainees on prescription medications. Detention officers often do not know which pretrial detainees in their custody are on medications that may have adverse side effects. Detention officers often do not know which pretrial detainees in their custody are taking psychotropic medications and may suffer heat-related illnesses if subjected to temperatures exceeding 85° F. Correctional Health Services does not maintain a list of pretrial detainees identified as seriously mentally ill and cannot readily determine where they are housed and what medications have been prescribed for them.

Detention officers often do not know which pretrial detainees in their custody have been identified as seriously mentally ill. There is no jail policy requiring that mental health staff be notified or involved in the disciplinary process of mentally ill detainees, and mental health clinical staff are not consulted about disciplinary actions against mentally ill detainees.  Some pretrial detainees have been punished for behavior related to serious mental illness. The vast majority of seriously mentally ill pretrial detainees are not housed in the Lower Buckeye psychiatric unit, and seriously mentally ill pretrial
detainees may be placed in segregation at other housing facilities without detention staff’s knowledge that the pretrial detainees are seriously mentally ill. Lockdown for twenty-three hours per day, alone or with cellmates, can be seriously detrimental to the condition of a seriously mentally ill pretrial detainee. Although seriously mentally ill pretrial detainees require more supervision when placed in segregation, they usually receive less.

Thorazine is an antipsychotic medication with potentially severe and permanent side effects, including extremely painful involuntary muscle spasms of the neck, tongue, eyes or other muscles, a profound restlessness and constant movement of the feet and legs, drug-induced Parkinsonism (a resting tremor with some muscle rigidity), and tardive diskenesia (potentially permanent and disfiguring involuntary movements around the face). Although Correctional Health Services witnesses testified they would not prescribe thorazine as a first line of treatment, in fact, Correctional Health Services has
prescribed thorazine for many psychotic, and even some not psychotic, pretrial detainees without justification for its use. Correctional Health Services psychiatrists sometimes prescribe thorazine as a sleep aid. Some of the seriously mentally ill pretrial detainees are housed in the psychiatric unit at the Lower Buckeye jail, and the most seriously mentally ill of those are housed in cells that do not permit psychiatrists and pretrial detainees to have visual contact while communicating or to have private therapeutic communications. Mental health staff frequently provide cell-side treatment without privacy in other housing units as well. In some cases, this detriment to therapeutic treatment is necessary to preserve the safety and security of staff and pretrial detainees; in some cases, it is not.

Many of the pretrial detainees housed at the Lower Buckeye jail psychiatric unit need hospital level psychiatric care. Many of the pretrial detainees housed at the Lower Buckeye jail psychiatric unit are maintained in segregation lockdown with little or no meaningful therapeutic treatment, which results in needless suffering and deterioration. Although mental health staff are on site twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, psychiatrists are not. Therefore, acutely psychotic pretrial detainees, pretrial detainees on suicide watch, and pretrial detainees in restraints or on forced medications, are being treated after hours and on weekends without the personal supervision of a psychiatrist.

Providing pretrial detainees’ prescription medications without interruption is essential to constitutionally adequate medical care. Lapses in medication for certain medical conditions, e.g., HIV, seizure disorders, diabetes, organ transplants, can be life threatening even if the lapse is only a few days. In addition to inconsistencies in obtaining necessary prescription
information during the intake process, Correctional Health Services does not consistently ensure that all pretrial detainees actually receive all prescribed medications as ordered. Prescription orders are recorded in pretrial detainees’ individual paper records, but Correctional Health Services is not able to generate a list of pretrial detainees in each housing facility to whom prescription medications are to be administered. Licensed Practical Nurses administer medications to pretrial detainees on “pill passes” through the jail housing facilities twice a day. During the pill pass, the pill nurse has the individual medical records of pretrial detainees who are to receive medication at a facility, which may number in the hundreds, and he or she records those who come forward when pill pass is called and receive medication. During the pill pass, the pill nurse also receives sick call requests from pretrial detainees and is expected to determine the urgency of any of the sick call requests.

The pill nurse does not have a list of which pretrial detainees are supposed to come for medication. The pill nurse does not know whether a pretrial detainee who is supposed to receive medication is at court, recreation, church, or sleeping. It may take the pill nurse several days to determine that a pretrial detainee has missed or continues to miss his or her prescribed medications. If a pretrial detainee does not come to pill pass to receive medication, when it is noticed, the pill nurse may enter into the pretrial detainee’s medical record that he or she refused medication, even if the pill nurse does not know in fact why the pretrial detainee did not come to the pill pass. Some “evening” pill passes have been conducted as early as 3:00 p.m. even though some of the prescribed medications are to be taken at bedtime and are known to cause drowsiness.

Most pretrial detainees are taken to the 4th Avenue Intake area upon arrest. During the pre-booking stage, pretrial detainees undergo a very short medical screening, are searched, and have their photographs taken. At this point, pretrial detainees are accepted into intake at the 4th Avenue jail and placed in an “identification” holding cell where they are held until they are interviewed by pretrial services. After the pretrial service interview, pretrial detainees typically are placed in “court” holding cells to await their initial court appearance. The booking process from pre-booking through the initial court appearance typically takes two to four hours. After pretrial detainees go to their initial court appearance, they are placed in a “classification” holding cell. Each intake identification and classification holding cell consists of a concrete floor, two concrete benches, one uncovered toilet, and one sink. The classification process typically takes two to six hours. After classification, pretrial detainees typically receive jail clothing within two to four hours. After receiving jail clothing, pretrial detainees are placed in holding cells to wait to be transported to their assigned jail housing units. It typically takes two to three hours to be transported to a housing unit. The jail intake process should take no more than twenty-four hours.

Defendant Arpaio’s records regarding a pretrial detainee’s length of stay in intake document when a pretrial detainee begins the intake process and when he or she is assigned to a housing unit, but they may not indicate how long a pretrial detainee waited in a holding cell to be transported to a housing unit. The records also may not indicate how long a pretrial detainee was physically located at the 4th Avenue Intake if he or she was taken to a hospital or to the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement. From June 1, 2007, through May 31, 2008, 93,065 pretrial detainees were booked into the 4th Avenue Intake. Of these, 21,987 (24%) were in intake more than twenty-four hours, 1,910 were in intake more than forty-eight hours, and 358 inmates were in intake more than seventy-two hours. 293. Regardless of the length of time a pretrial detainee remains in the intake process, Defendant Arpaio does not provide the pretrial detainee with a bed and blanket unless the pretrial detainee is placed in an isolation cell.

As previously found, intake holding cells often are overcrowded, without room for all inmates to sit, sleep, or move to use the toilet and sink. At times, the intake holding cells are extremely dirty, and the sinks and toilets unsanitary and inoperable. At times, the intake holding cells do not have toilet paper, and pretrial detainees are not provided with toilet paper when they request it. At times, the intake holding cells do not have soap for pretrial detainees to wash their hands after using the toilet. During intake, inmates usually have no access to a shower until they receive their jail uniforms.Some inmates have not been permitted to take a shower in intake before putting on their jail uniforms. When inmates are brought into intake, usually little is known about their mental and physical conditions, sexual orientation, and security threat levels. During intake, repeat offenders charged with serious violent crimes may be placed in holding cells with individuals charged with DUI or criminal speeding. There are no panic buttons or intercom systems in the intake holding cells. Pretrial detainees placed in intake holding cells usually can communicate with a detention officer only when the door is opened to move pretrial detainees in or out of a holding cell. Although security cameras record activity within intake holding cells, detention officers do not continuously watch the security cameras. Security staff provide only minimal visual and audio supervision of the intake holding cells. Detention officers do not conduct routine security walks on a regular basis in the intake areas. Detention officers do not continuously monitor the intake holding cells.

The intake incident reports do not include every incident that occurs in the intake holding cells, even some that require pretrial detainees to receive medical treatment. Defendant Arpaio does not consistently take reasonable measures to guarantee the safety of the pretrial detainees during the intake process.

Maricopa County Jails employ one dietician, who is responsible for ensuring that basic nutritional needs of pretrial detainees are met according to the National Research Council’s recommended dietary allowances. In 2003, the Maricopa County Jails dietician wrote that, in his professional opinion, the activity level of Maricopa County Jail inmates fell between sedentary and lightly active, which indicated that they would require an average of 2400 to 2500 calories daily. Maricopa County Jails wrongfully deny opportunity for most pretrial detainees to have a minimum of four hours outdoor exercise per week, which exercise would take pretrial detainees above a sedentary lifestyle. The United States Dietary Guidelines recommend that males ages 19-30 with a sedentary activity level have 2400 calories daily and that males ages 19-30 with a moderately active lifestyle should have 2600-2800 calories daily. The Maricopa County Jails dietician currently plans menus that he estimates would provide approximately 2400 to 2500 calories daily. Maricopa County Jails do not comply with its policies requiring inmates to be served 2900 calories daily.

Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office Policy DG-1 requires that a written nutritional analysis be prepared annually by a qualified nutritionist/dietician to compare the nutritional values of meals served against national standards. The Maricopa County Jails dietician prepared the annual analysis for the February 2007 menu, but to do so, he substituted specific fruits and vegetables for the items identified only as “fruit” and “vegetable” without knowing what foods actually were served to any pretrial detainees. When the Maricopa County Jails dietician prepared the annual analysis for the June 2008 menu, he learned that Maricopa County Jails kept a sample of meals served for the previous thirty days for quality assurance purposes, and he used those samples to determine what foods had been served to at least some of the pretrial detainees.
Maricopa County Jails provide pretrial detainees two meals each day: a sack meal in the morning and a warm meal in the late afternoon or early evening. Pretrial detainees may purchase additional food from the Canteen, which earned a net profit of $5,144,507.99 in fiscal year 2007.

The morning meal is served to each pretrial detainee in a transparent plastic bag referred to throughout the record as a “Ladmo bag.” The menu for each Ladmo bag in May 2008 and June 2008 is:
2 hoagie rolls (3-oz. each)
5 oz. meat or 4 oz. peanut butter
1 snack item
2 condiment packets or 2 jelly
2 pieces fresh fruit
1 milk
385. The menu for each dinner meal in May 2008 and June 2008 includes:
1 dinner roll (2 oz.)

It is impossible to determine from the menus the nutritional or caloric value of items identified only as “meat,” “fresh fruit,” “vegetables,” “dessert,” or “snack item.” The Maricopa County Jails dietician’s opinion is that there is no nutritional difference among different fruits, vegetables, meats, and starches, and it is unnecessary to distinguish a cup of lettuce from a cup of green beans, a banana from an apple, or a hot dog from turkey. The Maricopa County Jails dietician’s opinion is that French fries, diced potatoes, rice, and macaroni are of equal nutritional value. The Maricopa County Jails dietician’s opinion is that one ounce of beef has the same nutritional value as one ounce of turkey. The Maricopa County Jails dietician’s opinions regarding nutritional equivalents are not credible, and the Court does not believe them.

Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office Policy DG-1 requires that menus of meals actually served be retained for five years to verify the provisions of a nutritionally adequate diet. During the relevant time period, Defendant Arpaio did not keep menus of meals actually served. Pretrial detainees often receive food that is different than that stated on the Maricopa County Jails monthly menus, and not all inmates ordered to receive the same diet actually receive the same food at the same meal. Although Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office Policy DG-1 requires that any substitutions in the planned menu be of equal nutritional value and properly documented, not all substitutions are documented, and none of the menu substitutions from April through May 2008 were approved by the Maricopa County Jails dietician. The snack item included in a Ladmo bag usually is pre-packaged cookies, a snack cake, a Twinkie, cheese and crackers, or a candy bar.

A Ladmo bag may include an artificially flavored drink instead of milk. The fruit provided in the Ladmo Bags often is overripe or bruised and frequently inedible. The bread provided in the Ladmo Bags frequently is moldy and entirely or in part inedible. In 2003, the Maricopa County Jails dietician wrote that Maricopa County Jails receive “a tremendous amount of donated food, which arrives on a daily basis,” and the “calorie content of the menu will change on a daily basis, depending on the types of meats and deserts [sic] and fruit donated.” Maricopa County Jails currently receive a large volume of donated food, which is fed to inmates. Maricopa County Jails staff do not know who donated the food, the circumstances under which it was donated, or the age of the food. Extra meals are prepared and transported to jail facilities to replace meals containing moldy or spoiled food items. Inmates must request a replacement meal before leaving the serving line, but often are not allowed time to inspect their meals before leaving the serving line. If inmates are not permitted to obtain edible food to replace inedible portions of their meals, they have not been provided with all of the food included in the Maricopa County Jails dietician’s nutritional analysis.

Defendant Arpaio cannot establish what edible food inmates actually received during much of the relevant period. Defendant Arpaio cannot establish that pretrial detainees are served adequate nutrition. The Maricopa County Jails dietician’s opinion that pretrial detainees are served adequate nutrition is not supported by the evidence, is contrary to evidence, and is unworthy of belief. The Court does not believe it.

Food served to pretrial detainees is prepared either at the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office Food Factory or at the smaller Estrella jail kitchen. The warm evening meals often contain a meat and sauce or gravy product referred to as “cook/chill” because it is cooked in 300-gallon tanks, pumped into two gallon bags, and chilled, to be reheated before serving. The evening meals usually contain a starch, such as potatoes, rice, or beans, which have been found to include small rocks.

http://nicic.gov/Library/023393

Thus, the ACLU proved that the sheriff routinely abused pre-trial detainees at Maricopa County Jail by feeding them moldy bread, rotten fruit and other contaminated food, housing them in cells so hot as to endanger their health, denying them care for serious medical and mental health needs and keeping them packed as tightly as sardines in holding cells for days at a time during intake. Id.

The decision in Graves was upheld on appeal in 2010; Plaintiffs were awarded $1.2 million in attorney’s fees.

“Today’s ruling is further confirmation that even a man who likes to brag about being the toughest sheriff in the nation has to follow the U.S. Constitution,” said Margaret Winter, Associate Director of the ACLU National Prison Project and lead counsel for the detainees. “Sheriff Arpaio’s unconscionable treatment of the thousands of pre-trial detainees in his custody has gone on far too long.” Id.

Still, notwithstanding this horrific trail of brutal dehumanization deemed unConstitutional by the courts; Sheriff Arpaio is proud to ‘stand’ on his record of flaunting the Constitution. And, evidently, millions of people endorse unConstitutional conduct as carried out by him. On the other hand, these same people eagerly await word on Thursday from this ‘piece of work,’ that he has found the Rosetta Stone which will once and for all remove from office the “Usurper” they are convinced only got there by violating the Constitutional eligibility requirements for the job.

Of course, he won’t. Too much money at stake for these hucksters by engaging in the truth. So, what is this release of details which, in words couched by Mr. Arpaio (but emphasized by jbjd), “could be a shock”? Simply this. Under the U.S. Code; the (facsimile of an) image entitled “Birth Certificate” and bearing the name Barack Obama which was released by the WH on April 2011 is part of a real political ad campaign, the content of which, whether true, is protected under the 1st Amendment to the Constitution. See, for example, DE-CODER RINGS (1 of 2) and DE-CODER RINGS (2 of 2); and be sure to read the Comments.

(However, beginning in earnest the 2012 Presidential campaign by launching that ad from the WH could be said to be a violation of campaign finance laws.)

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

Freedom costs.


MICHELLE GOLDBERG HAMMERS ANOTHER NAIL in the MSM COFFIN

June 4, 2011

© 2011 jbjd

Granted, Michelle Goldberg has her own web site; has written a couple of books which, according to her, were well researched and appear to be selling well (id.); and writes a column for the Daily Beast. But assuming she means what she says in her recent diatribe, “Why Birthers Won’t Die,” that is, taking on face value that she is not writing just for provocation or brainwashing then, I cannot emphasize enough: when it comes to issues related to establishing Barack Obama’s Constitutional eligibility for POTUS, Ms. Goldberg has demonstrated she has absolutely no idea what she is talking about.

It’s not just the fact she repeats the fallacy, the hard copy of the electronic image President Obama calls a birth certificate and recently ‘released’ to the press, is actually a long form birth certificate, that makes any information coming from her suspect.  (I will write another article focusing on the lunacy of anyone’s continued bona fide belief, photocopying any electronic image adds to its authenticity.) Obama’s Director of Communications, Daniel Pfeiffer, posted this image on the WhiteHouse.gov blog. Ms. Goldberg even links her readers to that image effectively reasserting its authenticity.  But Pfeiffer’s job is to shape the President’s message and not to communicate news, which is the job of the Press Secretary (notwithstanding Robert Gibbs, Director of Communication of Obama’s Presidential campaign and former Press Secretary for President Obama often conflated those 2 positions).  Unlike Ms. Goldberg, Mr. Pfeiffer was doing a good job, by shaping the message.

Or that, she uses Mr. Corsi’s refusal to buy into this lie (that a bona fide birth certificate has been released) as a weapon against his motives and intellect.  In spades.

Much of Where’s the Birth Certificate? rehashes old, debunked stories meant to cast doubt on Obama’s birth in Hawaii. But the book also claims that even if Obama was born in the United States, he still might not be a “natural-born citizen” because of his father’s foreign citizenship, which would make him ineligible for the presidency. To make this argument, Corsi dredges up a constitutional theory popular in white supremacist and anti-immigrant circles, making an invidious distinction between those granted citizenship by the 14th Amendment and those who were citizens under the Constitution as originally written.

What?  Only those identified with “white supremacist and anti-immigrant circles” espouse that a bona fide difference exists between the terms “natural born citizen” in Article II, section 1 of the Constitution; and the term “citizen” as used in the 14th Amendment?  (Of course, I reject claims by Corsi or anyone else that citizens of non-citizen parents are not natural born citizens; and this only makes sense, since I maintain that no ‘legal’ definition of NBC exists absent a ruling by a federal appellate court, in a case on point.)

Worse, adding insult to injury, Ms. Goldberg justifies her political stereotyping using flawed reasoning, thereby additionally exposing her Constitutional  ignorance.

But Corsi’s ideas about the 14th Amendment, if taken seriously, wouldn’t just affect the children of immigrants—they could disqualify all black people from the presidency. “Obama defenders who want to define him as a natural-born citizen because he is native-born and a citizen under the 14th Amendment are engaged in an effort to redefine Article 2, Section 1, away from its original natural law meaning,” Corsi writes. The original meaning, of course, did not encompass black people. That’s why we needed the 14th Amendment in the first place.

Let me point to the absurdity of just one segment of this drivel:  Ms. Goldberg’s mistaken focus on Corsi’s phrase, “effort to redefine Article 2, Section 1, away from its original natural law meaning,” to mean that, Mr. Corsi rejects Obama’s Presidency based on his race.  She reasons, it is this focus on race which motivates Corsi to object to any attempt to steer the conversation toward 14th Amendment inclusion of blacks as eligible to become President, and away from the original intent, which clearly excluded blacks. But whether he is racist; she doesn’t know her Constitution and, based on her ignorance, obviously misconstrued the ‘plain meaning’ of Corsi’s words.

The phrase “natural born citizen” is listed in Article II, section 1, as a condition of Presidential eligibility.  And, the word “citizen” is listed in Article I, sections 2 and 3, as the eligibility requirements for Representative and Senator, respectively, put there almost 100 years before the 14th Amendment.

No person shall be a Representative who shall not have attained to the age of twenty five years, and been seven years a citizen of the United States, and who shall not, when elected, be an inhabitant of that state in which he shall be chosen.

No person shall be a Senator who shall not have attained to the age of thirty years, and been nine years a citizen of the United States and who shall not, when elected, be an inhabitant of that state for which he shall be chosen.

Get it?  The Drafters used the word “citizen” in 2 (two) different contexts of eligibility for office, one to be President; and the other to be a member of Congress. (Technically, the wording for President applies to eligibility; whereas the term for Congress applies to actual holding of the position.  This makes sense since members of Congress are elected directly – perhaps the Drafters did not trust the average citizen to choose the right person for the job – whereas Presidents are chosen by Electors who, it would appear safe to predict at the time, could not be anticipated to elect a President they were not certain was eligible for the job .) Since the Drafters used these 2 (two) different phrases, the tenets of statutory construction require that, we must assume, therefore, the Drafters meant 2 (two) different things.  “When Congress includes a specific term in one section of a statute but omits it in another section of the same Act, it should not be implied where it is excluded.” Arizona Elec. Power Co-op. v. United States, 816 F.2d 1366, 1375 (9th Cir. 1987); see also West Coast Truck Lines, Inc. v. Arcata Community Recycling Ctr., 846 F.2d 1239, 1244 (9th Cir. 1988), cert. denied, 488 U.S. 856 (1988). http://www.lectlaw.com/def2/s104.htm

See, contrary to Ms. Goldberg’s wishful projection; Corsi wasn’t at all waxing nostalgic, harkening back with longing to a time in our history when no blacks were counted as citizens and thus, could not be elected President (or Representative or Senator).  Rather, his use of the phrase “original natural law meaning” referenced the requirement of eligibility for President in Article II – natural born citizen – as opposed to, say, the original requirement in Article I for holding the office of U.S. Representative or U.S. Senator – citizen – which excludes the modifier, natural born.  Both of which applications of the term “citizen” he undoubtedly would agree should presently be read to include all citizens now Constitutionally defined as such, through the 14th Amendment.  Even those whose skin color is black.

In other words, even assuming a preference for color; Corsi just wants people to stop conflating “citizen” with “natural born citizen.” Get it?

But that excerpt points to my biggest objections to Ms. Goldberg’s hit piece on Mr. Corsi: her disingenuous diatribe against the man for what she paints as a racially motivated focus on the 14th Amendment. Those of you who have dissected the information on this blog probably already ‘get’ that she reverses cause versus effect. In fact, the eligibility argument only arose because Obama raised it by calling himself a “native” citizen and not “natural born.”  Indeed, he set up this false dichotomy, way back in 2007, when he – or perhaps more accurately, his campaign’s Director of Communications, Robert Gibbs – wrote “Fight the Smears,” the propaganda piece I have argued they would never have made public had he stolen the D nomination before the D Corporation Presidential Nominating Convention.  And in that same electronic advertising campaign, he posted the red herring argument about the 14th Amendment, couching it in racial terms, perhaps to misdirect the attention of astute citizens who otherwise might have noticed, he had conflated the 2 (two) Constitutional terms; and suspected a likely reason to be, he was trying to mask his ineligibility.

Want to see the evidence that supports my hypothesis, Ms. Goldberg?  IF DROWNING OUT OPPOSING FACTS IS “un-AMERICAN” THEN IGNORING UNPLEASANT FACTS MUST BE un-AMERICAN, TOO; or  TOO IGNORANT TO LEAD Of course, I am only a blogger.  (Then again, so was Dan Pfeiffer, in the context of posting that electronic image of the ‘document’ entitled, “Certificate of Live Birth” on the White House blog.)

Granted, maybe I am holding Ms. Goldberg to too high a journalistic standard.  After all, in the context of writing for the DB; she wears the hat of “columnist,” arguably absolving her from the profession’s constraints of both accurate and impartial reporting.

(In the interest of full disclosure, I am reporting that, evidently, Mr. Corsi’s book endorsed the work originating here on “jbjd” focused on filing citizen complaints of election fraud with state A’sG in those states with existing laws requiring candidate eligibility for office in order to access the ballot.  However, I have not read his book.)


(FORMER) CHAIR of CA D PARTY CONFIRMS “jbjd” CORRECT: 2009 PRESSER WAS a DOG-and-PONY SHOW

April 21, 2011

©2011 jbjd

Why, in April 2011, is Bill Press, a D among D’s – after all, how many D’s rise to the top of the CA state party? – still touting that July 2009 WH presser when he pretended to ask then WH Press Secretary Robert Gibbs, and Mr. Gibbs pretended to answer, this question:  Why do people still not believe President Obama is a NBC?  (And how was Mr. Press able to recall the date of that session off the top of his head, anyway?)

Watch this.

Did you catch when Mr. Press claimed Barack Obama first released his HI birth certificate in 2007 –  “In 2007, the President produced his birth certificate…” – but then checked himself and said this – “…asked the state of HI to, they did; they put it up on line; that’s what they do in HI, end of story.”

Notice that, in this present exchange, Mr. Buchanan asks Mr. Press for the reason that the WH press corps is not asking Mr. Obama why he chooses not to release his birth certificate; but that Mr. Press responds by saying, ‘I did, a year-and-a-half ago; Google it!’  Actually, in 2009, Mr. Press did not ask why the President does not release his birth certificate.  Because releasing this document was not the point of that dog-and-pony show.  Rather, the point of that charade was to reinforce the meme, such document had already been released and was posted on line.  In fact, Press only asked Gibbs this question:

Is there anything you can say that will make the Birthers go away?

thus cueing Gibbs to repeat that the electronic image of the COLB mock-up appearing on the paid political ad called “Fight the Smears” really is Obama’s birth certificate, which he – Gibbs – told Obama to post to silence questions as to whether he was “born in this country.” Id.

(It’s all here; read this.  PRESS BILL PRESS to EARN his  PRESS CREDENTIALS)

But know what really jumped out at me?  Even after Press caught himself, now crediting HI with producing the COLB rather than Obama; and ambiguously using the pronoun “they” to mean either HI or Obama’s campaign; he still acknowledges, this document that was obtained in 2007 was posted on line.  (Does he mean to falsely imply that, once the document was obtained (however it was either ‘obtained’ or ‘fabricated’) it was immediately posted?)  So, here’s the question I would ask Mr. Press.

Given your acknowledgement that this document was obtained in 2007 and subsequently posted on line; and given the fact that the attribution in the footer of the FTS web site containing the electronic image of this document, evidences this was copyrighted in 2007; and given that Mr. Gibbs claims he asked Obama to release this document; then why did the D’s wait until June 2008 to release it?  (This is a rhetorical question.  As I have answered previously, this tripe called “Fight The Smears” would never have seen the light of day if Obama and his co-conspirators hadn’t bungled the theft of the D Presidential nomination so that even after the primary/caucus season ended, no clear winner emerged.  If they had been better crooks then, with the over-weighted caucus votes and accompanying shenanigans, they could have wrapped up the nomination before people started asking questions about whether he was Constitutionally eligible for the job.)

P.S.  And when Gibbs said back in July 2009, ‘I asked Obama to post his birth certificate a year and a half ago’; this really jumped out at “Miri.”  (I told you, the Comments here at “jbjd” can be as intriguing as the Posts!)


TOO IGNORANT TO LEAD

February 20, 2011

©2011 jbjd

A brief article entitled, “Flake says:  “Get off this Kick”” appeared on the blog, Seeing Red AZ, whose byline reads, “political views from a red state.”  This blurb about Representative Jeff Flake (R-AZ) was taken from a longer article that appeared in The Hill, citing an interview conducted by CNN, who asked the candidate for U.S. Senate to comment on the results of a recent Public Policy Polling poll showing a majority of R primary voters do not believe Barack Obama was born in the U.S.A.  His reply?  People need to “accept reality.”  (The article on The Hill goes on to say, “Flake said the notion that Obama isn’t a U.S. citizen needs to be put to rest.”  Now, I cannot tell whether this line I quoted came from Flake or, The Hill, or CNN but, I have to tell you, having become an expert purser of Obama-speak, hearing the word “notion” in relation to anything about the man signals to me, ‘be on the alert for incoming lies.’)

Anyway, I saw the article on SRA because I was getting hits on my blog from that site and checked it out.  Well, I should have guessed, azgo had posted a great comment that included a link to “jbjd.”  He agreed I could re-print it here (with my editorial revisions).

Memo to Rep. Flake:  ‘Fight the Smears’ is Paid Political Advertising

The “Fight the Smears” web page with the image of a birth document is a paid political advertisement and conforms with TITLE 2 > CHAPTER 14 > of the U.S. Code, § 441d. Publication and distribution of statements and solicitations. This section deals with campaign funding, reporting, and other parameters.  Nothing in this law requires the advertising content to be true. And that only makes sense.  Because as the Supreme Court has ruled, when it comes to the First Amendment right to freedom of speech, political advertising is legal even if the advertiser does not tell the truth. “…the general rule is that the speaker and the audience, not the government, assess the value of the information presented.”  Edenfield v. Fane (91-1594), 507 U.S. 761 (1993).

The Obama campaign threw up an eye-catching wizardry of a political advertisement they named, “Fight the Smears,” on which they displayed graphics for visual impact, and ad copy with terms of art like ‘native born’ and ‘citizenship conferred by the 14th Amendment’ cleverly conflating these terms with the one they never mentioned, “natural born.” But this is the term emblazoned in Article II, section 1 of the Constitution.  And, consistent with section 441d, they solicited the public to ‘donate now’ and tell others, all so as to spread their truth about the candidate. Even though it was all a lie.

In truth, the state of Hawaii has never claimed responsibility as the “issuing authority” – this term of art is defined right there in the Code – of that online image of a COLB on the advertising platform entitled FTS.  They never confirmed this was a genuine “identification document,” consistent with the Code.  Even the ad failed to claim, this ‘document’ came from the HI Department of Health, Vital Records.  Or to include any identifying information that would allow anyone to trace back the mock-up to its hinted origins.  And all of the venues reporting that, having seen the image, they could confirm its authenticity – L.A. Times, Daily Kos, Annenberg Political FactCheck, Politifact – also stated publicly, they had received this image directly from the Obama campaign.

In other words, when it comes to providing documentary evidence as to where Obama was born, the only thing available in the public record, that online image of the birth document, means absolutely nothing…

…except that many Americans, including not just the media but worse, our state and national public officials can be duped into believing an image is real which was only created as the focal point of an on-line political advertising campaign to combat rumors a Presidential candidate is Constitutionally ineligible for the job!

https://jbjd.org/2011/01/03/de-coder-rings-1of2/

(View a screen capture of the 14th Amendment on FTS at IF DROWNING OUT OPPOSING FACTS IS “un-AMERICAN” THEN IGNORING UNPLEASANT FACTS MUST BE un-AMERICAN, TOO)

Not surprisingly, in 2007, gearing up for the political campaign of Barack Obama, the circumstances of whose birth, if uncovered, they believed would derail his bid to lead the free world; APFC posted this homage to the First Amendment license to print paid political lies.

Seems to me, a sitting U.S. Representative who is a candidate for U.S. Senate should be at least as well informed about the difference between protected false speech in paid political advertising, and the truth; as ordinary citizens who collaborated via email in their spare time to put together this post on a blog.


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