The Mueller report – part one

On today’s show we discuss the Barr memo and the Mueller Report.

What do we make of a four-page document that summed up a two year investigation

Does it “totally exonerate” the president?

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How should Democrats proceed going forward?  I give analysis and opinion with Denise from California.

Eric Holder appeared on Ari Melber’s show this week. 

Here’s what the former attorney general thought:

Vox.com did an entire guide to the Mueller investigation here: https://www.vox.com/2018/12/6/18118466/trump-mueller-russia-investigation

UPDATE:  In a follow up to our episode on Project Redmap (episode 17 of season two), the Supreme Court is having oral arguments on two very high profile gerrymandering cases.

As you may recall, Project Redmap was a largely successful effort by the GOP to, as Eric Holder put it, have politicians pick their constituents instead of the other way around.

Many credit the crazy gerrymandered maps as the reason for the GOP winning majorities in state governorship and House and Senate seats, like Ohio and Iowa, yet losing in or coming in even in local elections.   

As Vox.com reported, things got so bad in North Carolina, university students who moved from one dorm to another, crossed district lines and had to re-register to vote.

In today’s hearing, Amy Howe of SCOTUSBlog found it difficult to read where the conservatives stood on the issue.

The hearing for two cases, one out of Maryland and another out of North Carolina, all happened in one day.

In the North Carolina case, the state was fighting a federal court ruling that threw out the state’s map after 2010 census as a racial gerrymander.

The state redrew the map and the court threw it out as a partisan gerrymander.

Speaking for conservatives, Paul Clement said the  justices had no role to play in the case  according to the constitution. 

“The Constitution gives responsibility for drawing congressional districts to the political branches, he emphasized: first to state legislatures, and then to Congress itself, acting as a supervisor. There is no role for the courts, particularly because plaintiffs in partisan-gerrymandering cases have repeatedly failed to identify a workable standard for courts to use in reviewing such claims.”

Gorsuch, Roberts and Kavanagh seemed to agree with this reasoning.   

They seemed to agree with the concern that if the court got involved it would appear to be interfering in the election process. 

In the Maryland case, Republicans are suing over what it perceives to be a partisan  gerrymander in favor of Democrats.

Elena Kagan  seemed to agree:

This case is easy, she told Michael Kimberly, who argued on behalf of the plaintiffs, because of the “bragging” by state officials about how they had drawn the districts to favor Democrats. But once the court has made clear that partisan gerrymandering is unconstitutional, she continued, there wouldn’t be any bragging, and it “would really raise the bar” for plaintiffs to show that the alleged gerrymandering had had “dramatic effects.” And in the end, Kagan contended, lawsuits would only target the “worst of the worst” in partisan gerrymandering.

Clearly for the court to get involved and put an end to partisan gerrymandering, as Ms. Howe indicated, the liberals would need to find their own Anthony Kennedy (who left open the need for a workable standard to be created which makes these cases possible).

It is  unclear the McConnell, Trump, Heritage Foundation judges will see it that way.

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