The Judge Judy Show
“Every society gets the kind of criminal it deserves. What is equally true is that every community gets the kind of law enforcement it insists on.”
-former Attorney General, Robert F. Kennedy (1)
With a deadline of September 9, the parties in ‘Trump v. United States of America’ will agree on a list of possible arbiters, from which a Special Master will be selected. In addition, both parties will agree to a set of ‘ground rules’ for the Special Master to apply in determining from gathered evidence of possible wrongdoing where executive privilege and lawyer-client privilege apply.
In a version of politico-legal ‘kick the can down the road,’ Judge Aileen M. Cannon of the US District Court of South Florida has abandoned deliberation and declared a “commission” to preserve the ‘reputation’ of former President Donald J. Trump.
Examine the consequences of her directive — not a decision really — in the framework of this question:
Is this what Justices do?
Or…Is the public being asked to ‘recuse itself ‘ from this case while Judge Cannon helps prepare a criminal defense of the former President?
Among the examples of abusing the public trust — there are many — Judge Cannon’s directive,
Presumes that a Special Master passes security clearance for viewing illegally obtained classified material comprising a national security breach;
Unhinges an authorized FBI investigation into criminal wrongdoing from assembling evidence;
Invalidates a 1974 Federal Court decision on turning over Presidential material that can be evidence in a criminal proceeding; (2)
Renders a ‘shadow precedent,’ potentially influencing future criminal investigations.
For all this, former Federal Prosecutor and MSNBC legal contributor Chuck Rosenberg offered the appraisal that Judge Cannon’s decision “is not nefarious; it’s just plain wrong.” (3)
The legal community felt otherwise: a chorus of voices were sampled by Charlie Savage of the NYTimes, describing Cannon’s decision: (4)
To the observer, these are qualifiers usually not associated with a judge but with a political operative.
Don’t let the black robe trappings of a federal judge distract one: Judge Cannon is the result, the culmination of a nefarious political takeover of a branch of America’s government: a ‘fixer’ in black robes.
This is playing ‘Judge Judy’ at the federal level. (5)
To paraphrase a Judge of the Court of Berrien County, Michigan, whom I once served as jury foreman, and who instructed the jury of her role in an impending criminal trial:
This is not the Judge Judy Show, I am here to uphold the (replace,’ laws of the state of Michigan’) Constitution of the United States.
Can one recall a previous time in America’s history when during the transfer of the Office of the President, America suffered such injustice? Yesterday’s violent assault on the Electoral College certification is today’s nuclear readiness intelligence heist.
What is ‘unprecedented’ is the abject violation of the public trust.
For a discussion of whether a sitting President can be indicted, see the following article by Constitutional Law Professor, Lawrence Tribe,
3-Sept. 5, MSNBC
4-Charles Savage, “Deeply Problematic’: Experts Question Judge’s Intervention in Trump Inquiry,”
5-”Judge Judy” was a popular TV day-time show which simulated a courtroom confrontation between two parties in a dispute with a judge ‘arbitrating’ cost and penalties.