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For Poll Voters There are still Voter Guides Available At Robyn Nordell’s Web Site and Another Response to Brenda Higgins

Posted by Craig P. Alexander on June 2, 2018

Its T-minus 4 days to Election Day June 5th! Starting June 6th we all get a short reprieve from endless TV political ads, Facebook arguments and mailers in our mail box from politicians and their friends and enemies over who we should vote for.

By now the vast majority of vote by mail voters have sent in their ballots.  Its now time for those who vote at their polling places to start reviewing their sample ballots.  If you need some well done recommendations by people like myself and Robyn Nordell (and Nancy Sandoval and Kathy Dittner) who do not receive any money for our recommendations for any candidate or proposition those are offered online (for free).

Here is a link to my recommendations: Craig’s Pics June 2018 – Final.

Here is a link to Robyn Nordell’s Orange County page on her web site: Robyn’s Orange County Page.  You can find a link to my recommendations along with Nancy Sandoval’s and Kathy Dittner’s at this page. Here is a link to her main web page: Robyn Nordell’s web page.

I have written about the Governor’s race on this blog before mostly about Travis Allen’s poor voting record on the life (abortion) issue: Travis Allen – Not So Pro-Life.  This was after my friend Gina Gleason researched and put together her memo on Mr. Allen’s many, many abstentions on bills and resolutions about the abortion issue.  Here is the memo if you wish to see it yourself (it is also in my voter recommendations): Travis Allen 2018.

I hope you find the voter recommendations helpful.

Brenda Higgins (who supports Travis Allen) has also commented twice now on this blog of her reasons for her support of Mr. Allen.  Once again I appreciate that Brenda is taking the high road and not attacking people like myself with personal character attacks. Brenda is a class act!  This is in contrast to some people on Facebook whose response to our concerns are “You are evil for saying these things!” Thank you Brenda!

However as I said in my original response on this blog to Brenda (Voter Recommendations Still Available…), Mr. Allen himself has been completely silent in explaining his abstentions to these bills and resolutions.  He knows of these concerns but he has said nothing.  Silence is still not golden Mr. Allen!

The fact remains that if Mr. Allen is such a fighter for the causes he believes in and he says he is pro-life, his abstentions are not evidence of a fighter for the pro-life cause but of someone running away from the issue.  An abstention is not a no vote.  It is saying “I choose to be neutral” and to do so consistently on this issue overall!  Folks World War II was not won by Switzerland who remained neutral.  It was won by Britain, France, the United States, Russia and other allies who put their treasure and lives on the line.  One abstention may be forgiven but a sting of them is a pattern and a conscious choice to duck the issue!

As I said in my prior post: “Finally one of the criticisms of John Cox has been that he voted for Gary Johnson for President in 2016.  A bad decision but Mr. Cox has publicly admitted this was a mistake.  The other argument against Mr. Cox is he has no voting record on the life issue.  True – but I do for Mr. Allen and it is not good.  So I am going to cast my vote for John Cox for the June 5th primary top two election.  But if Mr. Allen and not Mr. Cox advances to the top two I will support his candidacy in November.  Either Mr. Allen or Mr. Cox will be better than Gavin Newsom.”

I will add that I would like to see a Republican Governor’s race in the November run offMr. Cox is the best chance of that happening especially after his being endorsed by President Donald J. Trump.  Otherwise we split the vote and it will be Gavin Newsom and Antonio Villaraigosa – two very leftist Democrats as our choices come November.

As an aside today I read that Arnold Schwarzenegger will not back either Mr. Cox or Mr. Allen (Schwarzenegger won’t vote for…).  Given that Arnold Schwarzenegger did terrible damage to the Republican brand in California and continues to support ultra liberal causes like fake news climate change (a.k.a. government take over) legislation – I consider this a back handed endorsement of both of them.

Craig Alexander is an attorney at law and a resident of South Orange County.  He practices law in the areas of the California Public Records Act, Office / Commercial Leasing, Insurance Law,  HOA law, Business Law and Litigation.  He can be reached at Craig@craigalexanderlaw.com

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The Reality of the Record

Posted by Brenda Higgins on June 2, 2018

Both Travis Allen and John Cox are running for California Governor, as Republicans, and on a Pro- life platform.  Pro Life Voters who support John Cox have declared that Travis Allen is “Not so” Pro-Life.  They have cited legislation in which Travis Allen took no position, as being dispositive of their content that he is not “Pro-Life”, but provide no real analysis of the legislation at issue.

I provided a detailed analysis of SB743, here.  I analyzed that one bill, because the California Pro Life Council, cited it exclusively, and repeatedly on their facebook page.  There are multiple other bills that are cited as being dispositive of the position that Travis Allen is “Not so” pro-life, and they are as follows.

Notworthy at the outset of this analysis, is that 41 votes are needed to pass legislations out of the Assembly.  Travis Allen abstained, meaning, did not vote, on ANY of these Pro-Abortion bills.

AB154 Allows Nurses to perform Surgical abortions.  49 votes in favor.

SB743 Allows Medical Patients to choose their care provider. 55 votes in favor. (Discussed at length in my prior article)

AB569 Code of Conduct for Employment may not include prohibiting abortion. 55 votes in favor.

AB569 Building Codes for Abortion Clinics. 50 Votes in favor.

The Anti-Travis Allen people have also cited these bills, in which he also had NO vote.

AB105 Gender Neutral words in codes, changing the words from Husband/ Wife, to Spouse.  63 votes in favor.

In 2016, Travis Allen received an approval rating from Planned Parenthood, of 67%.  In that year, Travis Allen voted with 62 other State Assembly members, to end the California tax on Feminine Products, Tampons and Maxi Pads.  The governor vetoed that bill when it got to him.

Travis Allen has been in the Legislature since 2013, and has not voted for Planned Parenthood to receive funding, has not voted in favor of abortion, has not voted in favor of any law expanding abortion or funding of abortion.

John Cox has never held public office, in spite of running a half dozen times.  He has admitted that he voted for Gary Johnson, the Libertarian candidate for President in 2016.  This is Gary Johnson’s position on Abortion.

Both men have stated that they are “Pro-Life”, yet John Cox’ representation has been accepted out of hand, and the real record of Travis Allen has been rejected.   The Pro-Life Lobby is just one segment, but the lack of clarity or rational justification for these endorsements deserves some scrutiny and attention.

I am a pro-life activist, and I will be voting for Travis Allen.

 

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Senator John Moorlach Says it May be Time For Travis Allen to Step Aside and Endorse John Cox

Posted by Craig P. Alexander on May 24, 2018

Today I received an e-mail from Senator John Moorlach in which he called upon Assemblyman and Gubernatorial candidate Travis Allen to withdraw from the race and endorse John Cox.  Rather than me giving you a point by point description of Senator Moorlach’s statement here it is:

Governor –

The fifth is the race for Governor. I have stayed neutral. I enjoy a relationship with both of the two main Republican candidates. I have always advised that, in a top-two system, only one Republican should be running in this field. The polling has consistently shown John Cox obtaining double the support of that garnered by Assemblyman Travis Allen. And President Trump has endorsed Cox.

For the sake of the Republican Party, it may be time for the Assemblyman to bow out and endorse John Cox. If this is not done, I believe that we will see Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom and former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa as the top two.

Here is a link to Senator Moorlach’s web page: John Moorlach’s Postings.

I also received in the mail today an “Independent Expenditure” mailer that bashed John Cox and advocated voting for Travis Allen.  Only problem – it was from the same committee who have been putting out mailers and TV ads in favor of former LA Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa a Democrat also running for Governor (at the bottom of the mailer it says: Paid for by “Families & Teachers for Antonio Villaraigosa for Governor 2018”).  Now you may ask why would they do that?  Easy – if Republicans split the vote between Mr. Allen and Mr. Cox, only Mr. Villaraigosa and Gavin Newsom will be in the top two runoff in November.  To put it more plainly – no Republican will be on the ballot for Governor this November which is exactly Senator Moorlach’s point in his appeal to Mr. Allen to withdraw.

Update: California Republican Party’s National Committeewoman Harmeet Dhillon (a San Francisco attorney) also has called on Travis Allen to drop out and endorse John Cox.  She wrote in a post on Facebook:

“Since it is not numerically possible for Travis to make it into the top two — something that we Republicans really need for the down-ballot — it’s time for all Republicans to support the Republican front-runner, including Travis Allen,” “He can be a spoiler, or he can be a gracious future candidate and a hero. #Unite.”

Craig Alexander is an attorney at law and a resident of South Orange County.  He practices law in the areas of the California Public Records Act, Office / Commercial Leasing, Insurance Law,  HOA law, Business Law and Litigation.  He can be reached at Craig@craigalexanderlaw.com

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Voter Recommendations Still Available at Robyn Nordell’s Web Site and a Response to Brenda Higgins

Posted by Craig P. Alexander on May 22, 2018

Here at Casa Alexander we have received our mail in ballots.  We will vote soon and end the string of political mail we have been getting every day.

As I noted before, if you are looking for help in voting Robyn Nordell has a very comprehensive web site with voter guides by people who are not paid a penny for their “endorsements” of any candidate or proposition.  Here is my prior post on this: Looking for Voter Recommendations? Here are some?

Robyn has been kind enough to put my own voter recommendations there in her Orange County section of her web site.  Here are my recommendations for those who would like to check them out: Craig’s Pics June 2018 – Final.

I have already written about one race – the race for Governor: Travis Allen – Not So Pro Life!  

Here is a link to Robyn’s web site:  Robyn Nordell.

Today I read Brenda Higgins’ post on this site about why she is voting for Travis Allen and her criticism of the analysis by persons like myself who have concluded that Mr. Allen’s many and consistent abstentions on bills, etc. on the life issue are incorrect.  First I wish to say I appreciate her tone as she is not attacking anyone’s character – too many times in this campaign season I have seen the reaction to these facts has not been to refute the facts but to cry out “You are evil for saying these things!”  Thank you Brenda for being civil about this.  I have said this consistently (on Facebook and here) that either Travis Allen or John Cox would be a better Governor than any of the Democratic candidates and I will support Mr. Allen if he is one of the two candidates running in November (I believe the chances of both of them being the “top two” candidates is very slim indeed).  Ms. Higgins respectful tone helps towards that end and I wish more people in both camps would take that route so we can unite behind one of the two after June 5th.

With all of that said I disagree with Ms. Higgins analysis.  First if anyone needs to step up and explain Travis Allen’s votes it is Travis Allen himself.  Yet he is very, very quiet on this issue and I am sure he knows of the criticism and position of people like myself.  Why doesn’t he contact people like Gina Gleason who was one of the people who researched all of these votes and put out the memo I linked to in my prior post? Here is that memo again: Travis Allen 2018Mr. Allen – silence is not golden!

In addition, while Ms. Higgins’ review of one of the pieces of legislation brings up good points about that specific bill, that does not explain at all why he abstained for so many bills and resolutions on the life issue.  Why he did not join his fellow Republicans in voting no?  Ms. Higgins states that Mr. Allen’s vote would not have mattered given the huge majority the Democrats have in the Assembly.  By that logic none of the Assembly Republicans should have voted yes or no on any of the bills.  Hum…we elected members of the Assembly to vote on bills even if they lose the votes.  Otherwise why are they there? In fact, by this logic none of the Republicans in the Assembly should ever vote on any bill where they know their position will not win the day.

In my opinion the statement on behalf of Mr. Allen that “my vote doesn’t matter” does not square with the claim that Travis Allen is a fighter – a fighter for the pro-life cause or any other cause does not stand down and not register a vote of No to bad legislation!

What this string of abstentions (until 2018 as a candidate for Governor) tells me is either he was ducking the issue or he is “Not so Pro-Life” as he claims.

Finally one of the criticisms of John Cox has been that he voted for Gary Johnson for President in 2016.  A bad decision but Mr. Cox has publicly admitted this was a mistake.  The other argument against Mr. Cox is he has no voting record on the life issue.  True – but I do for Mr. Allen and it is not good.  So I am going to cast my vote for John Cox for the June 5th primary top two election.  But if Mr. Allen and not Mr. Cox advances to the top two I will support his candidacy in November.  Either Mr. Allen or Mr. Cox will be better than Gavin Newsom.

Craig Alexander is an attorney at law and a resident of South Orange County.  He practices law in the areas of the California Public Records Act, Office / Commercial Leasing, Insurance Law,  HOA law, Business Law and Litigation.  He can be reached at Craig@craigalexanderlaw.com

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Looking for Voter Recommendations? Here are some!

Posted by Craig P. Alexander on May 8, 2018

Absentee ballots should be arriving in voter’s mailboxes starting today for the June 5, 2018 primary election.  Many voters I know ask for advice on who to vote for during election season.  To help them, I publish my Craig’s Picks Voter Recommendations.  Other friends like Nancy Sandoval do as well.  One of the best sources is the site maintained by my good friend Robyn Nordell.  Robyn (like Nancy and I) does painstaking research about candidates and propositions then publishes her recommendations at her web site.  Plus she is very kind to publish my own, Nancy’s and others’ (like some guy named John Moorlach!).  We do not always agree on a particular race or proposition, but we all are pro-life, pro-Second Amendment, and limited government.  None of us take any money for “endorsements” or our recommendations for or against any candidate, proposition or measure.

If you would like to see my Voter Recommendations here is a link to Craig’s Pics June 2018 – Final.

I have already chimed in on one aspect of the race for Governor here: Travis Allen – Not So Pro-life!

If you would like to see Robyn Nordell’s web site here is a link to her main page: Robyn Nordell.

If you would like to see Robyn Nordell’s Orange County web site page for her recommendations for Orange County specific races and scroll down for links to my recommendations and others like Nancy Sandoval’s here is the link: Robyn’s Orange County Page.

I encourage all conservative voters to vote in this primary race.  Not voting may allow two Democrats advance to the “Top Two” run off in November for certain races!

Craig Alexander is an attorney at law and a resident of South Orange County.  He practices law in the areas of the California Public Records Act, Office / Commercial Leasing, Insurance Law,  HOA law, Business Law and Litigation.  He can be reached at Craig@craigalexanderlaw.com

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Travis Allen – Not so Pro-Life!

Posted by Craig P. Alexander on April 19, 2018

Assemblyman Travis Allen is one of the candidates for Governor of California (web site).  He and John Cox (web site) are the two major Republican candidates.  Either of them would make a far better Governor for California than any of the Democratic candidates.

However, for people who value a politician’s voting record to see how he or she will vote and act on policy issues in the future (here as Governor of California), Mr. Allen’s voting record on the life issue is not consistent with his alleged “pro-life” campaign trail statements and claims.

On a consistent basis Assemblyman Travis Allen has steadily avoided voting yes or no on many, many bills (legislation and resolutions) in the Assembly that deal with the life (i.e. abortion) issue.  The document I have attached here: Travis Allen 2018 was painstakingly researched and put together by my friend Gina Gleason.  It reveals that Mr. Allen has abstained over and over again on bills on the abortion issue.  As an example from Mrs. Gleason’s list:

AB 569 (Gonzales/Fletcher) The bill prohibits an employer (INCLUDING A CHURCH) from requiring employees to sign a code of conduct that prohibits the employee from having an abortion. The bill was sponsored by NARAL Pro Choice California. (9/14/17) Note: Even Gov. Jerry Brown opposed this bill and it was vetoed. Assemblyman Travis Allen was present but abstained.
http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billVotesClient.xhtml?bill_id=201720180AB569

SJR 19 (Jackson) Both the CA Assembly and Senate urged the President and Congress to support access to abortions, including the services provided by Planned Parenthood, and to oppose efforts to eliminate federal funding for Planned Parenthood. (5/23/16) Assemblyman Travis Allen was present but abstained.
http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billVotesClient.xhtml?bill_id=201520160SJR19

In addition, Planned Parenthood (the largest provider of abortions in the United States) has twice given Mr. Allen a rating of over 50%: 2014 55% and 2016 67% (to be fair he received a zero rating in 2013, 2015 and 2107).  Here is PP’s web site for its scorecard (also listed on Mrs. Gleason’s document about Mr. Allen).

The life issue was the main public policy issue that motivated me to get involved in politics as an activist many years ago. Therefore Mr. Allen’s voting record on this issue is very important to me and who I decide to vote for in June.  If Mr. Allen is one of the top two candidates out of the June primary and the other top two candidate is a Democrat (none of them have stated they are pro-life) I will certainly vote for him as the better of the two choices.  But for the June primary, I have more than two choices and I will be exercising that choice.

I hope you find this information useful in your voting decision on the race for Governor for the June primary.

Craig P. Alexander, Esq. is an attorney at law who practices law in Dana Point, California.  He can be reached at craig@craigalexanderlaw.com.

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Are We Still A Nation of the Rule of Law? A Serious Question – Part III

Posted by Craig P. Alexander on March 5, 2018

A few weeks ago I published two posts about the FISA Gate scandal of the FBI and the U.S. Department of Justice apparently using the false and politically motivated “Steel Dossier” to obtain a FISA warrant on one time Trump campaign volunteer Carter Page. Here are links to them: Link 1  & Link 2. At the time of publication the “Nunes” or Republican memo had just been de-classified and released while we were awaiting the Democrats or “Schiff” memo’s release.  The Schiff memo has now been released (with some redactions) and it confirms one thing I stated in my prior posts – the American people deserve to see the entire Carter Page FISA application and the three renewals that were presented to the FISA court.  This has all become too much of a partisan back and forth.

First here is a link to the Schiff Memo: hpsci_redacted_minority_memo.  Then here is a link to an excellent analysis by Andrew McCarthy of the National Review in which he debunks most of the claims made by Adam Schiff and his Democratic friends.

However all of the partisan rankling over the memos does not answer or resolve an extremely important problem – the FBI and the DOJ were apparently willing to break the law and their own rules before a Federal Court Judge (or Judges) to obtain a warrant to surveil (spy on) an American citizen who had been previously part of an opposing political campaign.  As Mr. McCarthy pointed out, the FBI did not need to get a FISA warrant to surveil Mr. Page.  He had previously cooperated with the FBI in a prior investigation of an alleged Russian spy and they could have gone back to him again and asked him about what he knows.  Since he apparently had cooperated and helped them in the past, what did they believe had occurred by 2016 that forestalled their going to Mr. Page again before getting a FISA warrant?  For a full impact / understanding of this read Mr. McCarthy’s article linked above. As Mr. McCarthy explains, this point is very critical and is another reason why the public needs to be allowed to see the application and renewals to the FISA Court.

With the atrocious massacre at the high school in Florida, the school safety and gun control debate this has started and now the President’s trade tariff announcement it is natural for people to have “moved on” from FISA Gate.  But this violation of the 4th Amendment is a critical issue – if law enforcement at the highest level of our country can lie to a Federal Court judge(s) to get a warrant like it did here and it is allowed to go unanswered and unpunished, what is the stop them from doing this again and again and again?

What’s next?  I suspect the next shoe to drop in this scandal will be the report by Inspector General Michael Horowitz.  When will that come out?  I do not know but not fast enough for me.  When it does I will publish a Part IV here.  It would be far better for the country for the FISA application and renewals to be released to the public now.

Craig P. Alexander is an attorney and principal of the Law Offices of Craig P. Alexander in Dana Point, California.  A large part of his legal practice is regarding the California Public Records Act to obtain documents from state and local governments (the state version of the Freedom of Information Act to obtain documents from the Federal government).

 

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Are We Still A Nation of the Rule of Law? A Serious Question – Part II

Posted by Craig P. Alexander on February 9, 2018

Yesterday I published a post on the “FISA Gate” scandal with my take on the current situation and why it is so very serious to our Republic.  In today’s post I outline my opinion of what certain people involved in this matter should do to best serve the American people, put maximum light on this situation and restore the American people’s trust in their federal government’s law enforcement agencies.

President Trump:  Unfortunately while several people in this matter deserved to be fired (and maybe more), given the highly charged political environment, if the President fires anyone involved it will fairly or unfairly turn into a firestorm.  Even though he had every right to fire James Comey as FBI director, what he got was a Special Counsel to investigate him.  So the best thing for the President and his team to do is ride this out until all of the facts are on the table.   But speaking of facts, the President and his team should help in any way they can move along any requests for de-classification of information such as the Cater Page FISA application and its renewals.

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein:  He signed one of the applications for renewal for the FISA warrant on Carter Page. Plus he oversees the Robert Muller investigation.  To put it bluntly Mr. Rosenstein is on the hot seat.  He needs to move heaven and earth to show the American people that his actions in this matter were proper.  This includes getting de-classified whatever documents are necessary to explain his actions (the entire Carter Page FISA application and its renewals would be an ideal start) and he needs to do that now. He took an oath not to President Trump, President Obama or anyone else but to the Constitution, including upholding the 4th Amendment.  Since it appears he may have participated in a violation of the 4th Amendment, the burden is on him to explain himself.  If he is unable or unwilling to do this then he should resign from this position and allow someone else (preferably from the outside of the DOJ) to take his place.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions:  Due to his involvement in the Trump campaign, he has recused himself from the Russia investigation and any investigations of Hillary Clinton.  When he did these recusals they were the right thing to do.  Except for Civil Asset Forfeiture (I am against it and AG Sessions is for it) I am a Jeff Sessions fan.  However, with these revelations of likely illegal activity at the top of the FBI and the DOJ, the situation has changed.  If Mr. Rosenstein will not explain himself or resign, then Mr. Sessions needs to find a way to properly un-rescue himself and conduct his own investigation starting with suspending or firing Mr. Rosenstein.  If he cannot do this, then he needs to resign and allow the President to appoint a new Attorney General – preferably someone not connected to his campaign or the DOJ who will investigate and clean house. Perhaps a state Attorney General who had no connection to the Trump campaign.  After this scandal (plus the Fast and Furious, IRS and the Hillary Clinton scandals just to name a few where the DOJ apparently played politics) the American people deserve to know that their Federal government law enforcement agencies cannot and will not be used by one party in power to spy on the other parties’ campaign or other similar illegal actions.

FBI Director Christopher Wary:  He has been, to date, more in the camp of protecting top FBI brass and helping stonewall Congress on giving them documents.   He needs to restore the people’s confidence in the FBI.  Director Wray has the power to sideline many people inside the FBI who were apparently committing these acts.  It appears he has done that to some degree. Perhaps he is waiting until Inspector General Horowitz’ report is issued before he fires people like Peter Strzok and Lisa Page.  But he should at the very least issue a statement that he is indeed waiting for the IG’s report.  Plus that he is personally reviewing not only the Carter Page FISA application and renewals but any FISA applications and renewals that Strzok, Page and some of the other actors inside the FBI worked on over the last two or three years.

Special Counsel Robert Mueller:  Mr. Mueller may be the straight shooter that people like Congressman Trey Goudy says he is but his hiring practices leave a lot to be desired.  Why did he hire so many anti-Trump and pro-Clinton persons from the DOJ and FBI?  Why are so many of them still on his team?  He should replace them now.  But if nothing else, he needs to view this whole “FISA Gate” scandal as a rising of the bar for his investigation and any decisions he may make to charge anyone and especially the President with wrongdoing.  I am not saying President Trump should have the same sweetheart deal Hillary Clinton got.  But if he is going to file charges for “collusion” (which is not a crime) or obstruction of justice, it needs to be an iron clad case.  Otherwise this will only look like a witch hunt.  As a prosecutor his job is not to get convictions but to serve justice. 

The FISA Court Judges:  As an attorney myself (I do not practice criminal law) I know that if any attorney submits to a court a document that is false, especially if it is submitted under penalty of perjury, and the court finds out it is false, that attorney is, to say the least, in trouble.  My hope is that the FISA Court Judges are looking over the FISA applications on Carter Page and any others submitted by the people involved in this scandal to see if the allegations being made are true or not.  If true and the Court was deceived, the Judges should be issuing orders to those involved to come and explain themselves to them under pain of being found in contempt of court or guilty of perjury.  If any of the DOJ attorneys mislead the Court, I would hope the Court would take strong action.  In addition, I would hope the FISA Court Judges would find a way to communicate to the American people that they recognize the serious issues that have been given light as a result of this scandal and are taking steps to address that.

A hallmark of our system of government is liberty and freedom from government coercion and control. The 4th Amendment exists to protect American citizens from “wiretapping”, surveillance, spying on their activities, etc. unless the authorities have presented a Judge with proper and verified evidence of likely criminal wrongdoing by that citizen to justify issuing a warrant.  This includes when foreign nationals may be involved.

The critical issue here is one party then in power using law enforcement tools to spy on its political opponents (and maybe beyond them as well) on the basis of evidence that was false and paid for by their favored candidate’s political campaign.  If as we are told by Mr. Nunes and his fellow Republicans, this occurred, this is not just an injustice to President Trump and his supporters, but to all citizens.  Americans deserve to know all of the facts and not via the lens of partisans on either side.

Release the FISA court applications and renewal applications – all of them!  And now! 

Craig P. Alexander is an attorney and principal of the Law Offices of Craig P. Alexander in Dana Point, California.  A large part of his legal practice is regarding the California Public Records Act to obtain documents from state and local governments (the state version of the Freedom of Information Act to obtain documents from the Federal government).

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Are We Still A Nation of the Rule of Law? A Serious Question – Part I

Posted by Craig P. Alexander on February 8, 2018

Is our country still a nation of the rule of law or are we now under the rule of men? This is now a very serious question facing the American people. At the beginning of our Republic the Founders instituted the U.S. Constitution with the original 10 amendments. One of them is the 4th Amendment against unreasonable search and seizure. It states:

“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue,     but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

One of the main reasons the Founders insisted on the inclusion of the 4th Amendment was to be rid of the British practice of issuing “general warrants” that allowed British officials to invade and search randomly vast numbers of homes and farms on no evidence of wrongdoing by those being searched.  Of course the Founders did not have “telecommunications” where our conversations, plans, information gathering, etc. is done over the telephone and the Internet.  However the Courts and Congress have recognized and applied 4th Amendment protections to those methods of communication and information gathering.

Today we are faced with a very serious challenge to our rights as Citizens of this Republic regarding our 4th Amendment rights with the recent revelation of abuse of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (or FISA) laws being used against US Citizens by the FBI and the Dept. of Justice.

As you know the Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee have released the “Nunes Memo” which, if accurate, details serious misuse and maybe outright fraud upon the FISA court on at least one application – to surveil Carter Page, a onetime volunteer adviser to the Trump campaign.  Here is a link to the Nunes Memo.  It is important that people read this short three and one half page document.  Another important thing to read and understand is the timeline of these events.  Thomas Del Baccaro has put together that timeline in his article which appeared in Political Vanguard. Here is the link. One thing important to note from the timeline – the 2016 FISA warrant application and order were after Carter Page left the Trump campaign.  Also importantly Senator Charles Grassley and Senator Lindsey Graham have released a letter to the DOJ (with some redactions) for potential criminal prosecution of Christopher Steele.  That letter confirms much of the Nunes Memo. Here is the link to that letter.

At the time of my writing this post the White House is reviewing the Democratic memo by Congressman Adam Schiff for release, release with redactions, etc.  I suspect it will be out soon.  Both the Nunes and Schiff memos claim to be accurate and based upon the underlying documents including the FISA application and renewal applications.   Reportedly the Schiff memo rebuts statements made in the Nunes memo.  As an aside, given that many things Adam Schiff has said have been proven to be untrue, in my opinion he is not to be trusted.

But this scandal raises serious questions: Are highly placed members of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Department of Justice actively misleading the FISA court to spy on American citizens?  If Carter Page was “surveilled” (spied upon), did the FBI follow others who spoke to Mr. Page such as persons in the Trump campaign separate and apart from any conversations Mr. Page had with them?  What part did the Fusion GPS “dossier” play in the FISA application?  Even if it was only a small part of the application, if the dossier was “salacious and unverified” as Former FBI Director Comey stated, why was it used in the application at all?  Did the FBI and Department of Justice attorneys withhold from the FISA court that the dossier was paid for by the Hillary Clinton campaign and the DNC (via an illegal concealed payment to Fusion GPS by the campaign’s attorneys)?  If so, did the Court ask any questions about this either at the time of the original application or on one of the renewals of the warrant? If the origin of the dossier was disclosed to the FISA court why did it issue the warrant?  Were any other warrant applications to the FISA court by these same individuals made with tainted evidence?  Etc., Etc., Etc….There are SO MANY MORE QUESTIONS that the Nunes Memo and other information in the news regarding this scandal bring up.

One thing is certain – the American people deserve to have the entire FISA application and renewal documents (with only sparse redactions for true national security purposes) released and very soon.  Let the American people decide for themselves if the application and its renewals were done properly or not.

The fact that the FISA process, applications and courts are designed to operate in secret is no excuse for withholding this application and its renewals.  There is just too much independent evidence (such as the infamous texts between disgraced FBI agent Peter Strzok and FBI attorney Lisa Page) of bias investigations and abuse of the FISA process to keep this “under wraps” for any reason.  The American people have a legitimate reason to demand and receive these documents.  If it proves that Mr. Nunes is correct, then massive changes need to be made to the FISA process and certain people need, at the very least, to lose their jobs.  If the evidence is that the Nunes memo is false, the American people need to know that too.

In Part II – My Thoughts on What People Involved in this Scandal Should Do Now.

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U.S. Senate Democrat Hypocrisy In Full Display Joined by Two Republicans!

Posted by Craig P. Alexander on January 30, 2018

Sometimes satire is very very funny. The Babylon Bee (http://babylonbee.com/) is a Christian satire site similar to the Onion but with a religious theme to it.  It’s “articles” are usually funny with lots of humor often poking fun at popular culture and at the Church itself.

But sometimes its satire is bitingly and strikingly to the point.  The vote by most of the U.S. Senate Democrats and two Republican Senators Lisa Murkowski and Susan Collins on the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act is a case in point – actually two cases on point.  First is the Bee’s article entitled:

Senate Democrats Refuse To Grant Legal Status To Children Dreaming Of Being Born (Link)

The article begins: “WASHINGTON, DC—Voting down a measure that would have banned most abortions after 20 weeks gestation, Senate Democrats on Monday refused to grant legal status to millions of unborn children dreaming of one day being born.”

Later in the article it states: “Frankly, I’m tired of the Republicans’ sob stories about these so-called ‘dreamers’ who are deliberately hiding inside a womb, hoping for government protection without going through the proper channels,” a DNC spokesperson told reporters. “Maybe it’s not their fault their parents brought them into this world, but that does not give them the same Constitutional right to life that hardworking, natural-born Americans have earned.”

For the rest of this bitingly true article go to the link above – its satire but it is strikingly on point.

The the Babylon Bee followed up with this excellent piece:

After Killing 20-Week Abortion Ban, Democrats Resume Lecturing People About Compassion (Link)

This one begins: “WASHINGTON, D.C.—According to sources within the Senate, Democratic legislators took a short break from their tireless schedule of lecturing the nation about compassion Monday in order to vote against a ban on the barbaric practice of ripping helpless 20-week-old babies limb from limb and pulling them from the wombs of their mothers.”

Later the article “reported”: “We had to hit pause on our monologues about immigrant children for a quick minute so we could ensure that women’s rights to kill their babies at any time, for any reason are preserved,” Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said. “But rest assured, we are back on our moral high horse and will proceed to posture as champions of the oppressed and the only virtuous human beings on earth, now that that task is complete.”

Finally this satire piece noted that “At publishing time, sources confirmed that the two Republicans who sided with the Democrats to shoot down the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act—Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Susan Collins of Maine—had resumed acting as though they represented the values of their constituents.”

I highly recommend you go to the link above for this full article too.

While these two reports are truly “satire,” they are based on true events that occurred this week (the week of January 29th).  And both point to the absolute hypocrisy of most U.S. Senate Democrats (including our own Kamala Harris and Dianne Feinstein).

Both articles are very short and worth your time.

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