White House declared war on Indymedia?

posted at 10:12 am on November 10, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

Did the White House try to open up a two-front war on the media?   Before the Obama administration launched an all-out battle with conservative-leaning Fox News Channel, the Department of Justice demanded the records of all visitor information of left-leaning Indymedia.us in an remarkable subpoena of a media outlet, for one specific day.  No one can recall any precedent for such a wide-ranging probe into the records of a media website, but it may provide a challenge to a national-security law if the DoJ presses hard enough:

In a case that raises questions about online journalism and privacy rights, the U.S. Department of Justice sent a formal request to an independent news site ordering it to provide details of all reader visits on a certain day.

The grand jury subpoena also required the Philadelphia-based Indymedia.us Web site “not to disclose the existence of this request” unless authorized by the Justice Department, a gag order that presents an unusual quandary for any news organization.

Kristina Clair, a 34-year old Linux administrator living in Philadelphia who provides free server space for Indymedia.us, said she was shocked to receive the Justice Department’s subpoena. (The Independent Media Center is a left-of-center amalgamation of journalists and advocates that – according to their principles of unity and mission statement – work toward “promoting social and economic justice” and “social change.”)

The subpoena (PDF) from U.S. Attorney Tim Morrison in Indianapolis demanded “all IP traffic to and from www.indymedia.us” on June 25, 2008. It instructed Clair to “include IP addresses, times, and any other identifying information,” including e-mail addresses, physical addresses, registered accounts, and Indymedia readers’ Social Security Numbers, bank account numbers, credit card numbers, and so on.

Whoa.  First, why would Indymedia have readers’ SSNs?  I’m assuming that this was a “kitchen sink” kind of request.  The rest of this seems pretty ominous, too.  Why would the federal government need the banking records of everyone who ever visited their website?  Why would they need the physical addresses of everyone who reads Indymedia?

CBS’ Declan McCullagh notes that this request had to have the personal approval of Attorney General Eric Holder, but that may or may not be true.  DoJ guidelines require the AG to personally approve subpoenas on media outlets and reporters because of the sensitive nature of such demands.  This subpoena got issued on January 23rd of this year, after the Obama administration took power, with Holder awaiting confirmation.  Holder assumed office on February 3rd, which means that the acting AG may have had to sign off on the subpoena instead — or that Holder may have filled that role while filling the role pending confirmation.

At any rate, when the Electronic Frontier Foundation challenged the subpoena, the DoJ withdrew it immediately — but then issued a very strange warning about the subpoena itself:

Morrison replied in a one-sentence letter saying the subpoena had been withdrawn. Around the same time, according to the EFF, the group had a series of discussions with assistant U.S. attorneys in Morrison’s office who threatened Clair with possible prosecution for obstruction of justice if she disclosed the existence of the already-withdrawn subpoena — claiming it “may endanger someone’s health” and would have a “human cost.”

Lucy Dalglish, the executive director of the Reporters Committee for Freedom of The Press, said a gag order to a news organization wouldn’t stand up in court: “If you get a subpoena and you’re a journalist, they can’t gag you.”

Basically, that would be the “Shut up, he explained” strategy.  While some national-security subpoenas may need some reasonable silence, asking for the banking records of all visitors to a media outlet website hardly qualifies for that purpose.  And EFF knows how the DoJ should pursue that kind of subpoena, which is why they demanded that the DoJ pursue it under the specific act that would allow the DoJ to silence Indymedia.  The DoJ backed down, not wanting to give EFF the opening they want to challenge the constitutionality of that law.

Why concern ourselves over the plight of Indymedia, a left-leaning outfit looking for “social change”?  Obviously, we do the same kind of aggregation as Indymedia, which doesn’t offer much in the way of original content and reporting.  We don’t collect physical addresses or banking information, but we would assume that any government willing in its third day in office to demand that kind of information and compliance from Indymedia would have no reluctance to demand something similar of Hot Air.  Beyond self-interest, the First Amendment keeps government in check, and any attempt to limit its reach leaves the federal government with too much power over its citizens.


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Wait, did you actually write something about the First Amendment in relation to the Obama admin, Ed? How strange.

William Teach on November 10, 2009 at 11:16 AM

What does “Almost certainly” mean Bozo?

fogw on November 10, 2009 at 10:53 AM

I mean that I doubt an investigation went from 0 to subpoenas in three days

Bleeds Blue on November 10, 2009 at 11:07 AM

LOL.

So in your fuzzy world “almost certainly” means you doubt if something happened.

Thanks for clearing that up.

fogw on November 10, 2009 at 11:16 AM

That June 2008 era happens to coincide with a meltdown a local Houston blogger had. Our own Craig Yates (aka Desperado) had a WordPress blog that was conservative and a Chronicle blog that started out as a mirror of the WordPress blog. Then he converted to bashing Hillary and McCain and promoting all things Obama. When his WordPress blog was exposed he shut down for awhile and then came back declaring proudly he got his talking points directly from Obama’s camp. I believe it also dovetails with the era that bundlers were being exposed in his campaign.

DanMan on November 10, 2009 at 11:17 AM

Just out of Curiosity, what information does HA collect?
How long do they keep it?
What are they required to collect?

Juno77 on November 10, 2009 at 11:09 AM

HotAir only collects blood type and dental records. Oh, and how often you get your car’s oil changed.

rbj on November 10, 2009 at 11:17 AM

Mark Filip was the Acting Attorney General on January 23, 2009. He was the Deputy Attorney General appointed by Bush on March 10, 2008, was an Assistant US Attorney in Chicago and clerked for Scalia.

I doubt this has anything to do with Obama.

Jimbo3 on November 10, 2009 at 11:01 AM
Why would a subpoena be issued by an administration after it has left office? That doesn’t make sense. They have no more control over the investigation. I can see where the incoming administration could have a planned investigation in the works. Mr. Filip was working under the administration of Obama, not Bush on Jan 23.

CBP on November 10, 2009 at 11:08 AM

This was a transition appointment for two weeks. This investigation must relate to something that’s not political, and must have started long before Obama’s inaguration. There was no reason for the Bush Deputy Attorney General to sign anything connected with Democrat politics.

Jimbo3 on November 10, 2009 at 11:17 AM

Dude. The subpoena was issued by a Bush appointee.

Bleeds Blue 343 on November 10, 2009 at 11:07 AM

Really? Some evidence would be nice.

By the way, a Clinton appointee (Federal Judge) ruled in a 2003 lawsuit that Iraq was involved in the 9/11 attacks. Please spin that one for us.

Oh, and I’m still waiting for your “hypothesis” as to how Chimpy could have prevented those 9/11 attacks.

Del Dolemonte on November 10, 2009 at 11:19 AM

People need to look at who I surround myself with to get to know me…..

Had a good look and don’t like the picture.

Unfit to serve……

bluegrass on November 10, 2009 at 11:20 AM

I mean that I doubt an investigation went from 0 to subpoenas in three days

Bleeds Blue on November 10, 2009 at 11:07 AM

There’s no chance that the paperwork was already prepared prior to taking residence in the White House?

MarkTheGreat on November 10, 2009 at 11:21 AM

Personally, I dont’ care WHO was president when, or the dates issued or anything else. This is very scary stuff.

If there was a specific threat to someone, that is what they should look for, not a wide-ranging fishing expedition, which is what this appears to be.

I would think if there WAS something threatening, illegal, or whatever, you SHOULD just be able to get the specific poster’s IP, and trace it from there.

JamesLee on November 10, 2009 at 11:22 AM

Mark Filip was the Acting Attorney General on January 23, 2009. He was the Deputy Attorney General appointed by Bush on March 10, 2008, was an Assistant US Attorney in Chicago and clerked for Scalia.

I doubt this has anything to do with Obama.

Jimbo3 on November 10, 2009 at 11:01 AM

Why would a subpoena be issued by an administration after it has left office? That doesn’t make sense. They have no more control over the investigation. I can see where the incoming administration could have a planned investigation in the works. Mr. Filip was working under the administration of Obama, not Bush on Jan 23.

CBP on November 10, 2009 at 11:08 AM

What, you think every investigation underway on January 19th was cut off on January 20?

What does “Almost certainly” mean Bozo?

fogw on November 10, 2009 at 10:53 AM

It means he knows that he can’t prove it, but he wants everyone to think that he can.

MarkTheGreat on November 10, 2009 at 11:11 AM

No, it means that investigations take time and so it would be surprising that some brand new guy came in and within 48 hours launched a new investigation, did the preliminary work, got the (Bush-appointed) US Attorney to sign off, jumped through the hoops necessary to get a subpoena from a judge, and got the subpoena to the ISP within 48 hours.

Bleeds Blue on November 10, 2009 at 11:22 AM

Dude. The subpoena was issued by a Bush appointee.
The investigation is probably still ongoing, hence the Administration’s silence.
Bleeds Blue on November 10, 2009 at 11:07 AM

If that is true, it still changes nothing.
BO let it continue, which means he is also complicit in this.
They are all crooked & if BO is such an agent of Hope & Change & this is grossly wrong, then he should have stopped it.
As the Savior, I expect no less of him.
Badger40 on November 10, 2009 at 11:09 AM

Good point.

What Really worries me is that the left has finally stumbled onto the Conservative version of Kreptonite, the ONE thing that will render us all instantly powerless and unable to respond.

The One thing that we ALL secretly hoped and prayed that the left would Never discover.

And Now, with them stumbling across it, we can sadly mark this day down as the Conservative Armageddon.

The Left has discovered the one weapon that will make them invincible.

They finally have the unanswerable retort: IT’S BOOOSHES FAULT!!!!!

Juno77 on November 10, 2009 at 11:23 AM

The subpeona was issued by Timothy M. Morrison, who was appointed as United States Attorney for the Southern District of Indiana by U.S. Attorney General Michael Mukasey (i.e., Bush’s Attorney General).

More evidence that this is not politically motivated by Obama.

Jimbo3 on November 10, 2009 at 11:24 AM

Dude. The subpoena was issued by a Bush appointee.

Bleeds Blue 343 on November 10, 2009 at 11:07 AM

Really? Some evidence would be nice.

“The subpoena (PDF) from U.S. Attorney Tim Morrison in Indianapolis…”

Bleeds Blue on November 10, 2009 at 11:25 AM

Who cares? Why do they want records from one day and from one media source?

ORconservative on November 10, 2009 at 11:26 AM

Obviously Holder was too busy going after those pesky Black Panthers!

Or not.

atlgal on November 10, 2009 at 11:27 AM

And let me be clear. I don’t think any administration should be subpoenaing records like this or issuing gag orders (or National Security Letters, which were staunchly defended by the Bush Administration) and am pleased that DOJ seems to have realized its error and withdrawn the subpoena, once it was challenged by the EFF.

Bleeds Blue on November 10, 2009 at 11:28 AM

I think the scales of justice needs investgated by the weights and measures department. Justice is blind is not cool..

bluegrass on November 10, 2009 at 11:30 AM

An interweb search for June 25, 2008 turns up only one newsworthy political event-
.
Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) will host a private meeting in Chicago with business leaders from across the country and a wide array of industries, including Ford Motor Co. president and CEO Alan Mulally.

.
Emphasis mine.

Mr. Arrogant on November 10, 2009 at 11:30 AM

Screw you, WH. You won’t give the American people yours; why should they give you theirs?

Fuzzlenutter on November 10, 2009 at 11:31 AM

Who cares? Why do they want records from one day and from one media source?

ORconservative on November 10, 2009 at 11:26 AM

–Death threats, leak of sensitive information, maybe something else.

If you do a little searching, you’ll see that the Bush administration subpeonaed indymedia for information related to a possible threat to RNC delegates at the 2004 convention: http://nyc.indymedia.org/feature/display/107119/index.php.
You’ll also see that indymedia (independent media) routinely gets subpeonas in other investigations.

Jimbo3 on November 10, 2009 at 11:32 AM

Gotcha Jimbo, but if it was a Bush thing, why would Obaama continue it and I think that threats against delegates would be a reason to subpeona. Don’t you?

ORconservative on November 10, 2009 at 11:35 AM

Maybe the libs can check with Hillary with her experience with the FBI and its files. Or get Sandy Berger to help them with this one.

bluegrass on November 10, 2009 at 11:37 AM

Obvious is it? Base on what? Your utter faith that the DOJ would never do anything wrong?

MarkTheGreat on November 10, 2009 at 11:13 AM

Obvious to anyone with an IQ over room temp which excludes you.

Blake on November 10, 2009 at 11:38 AM

We don’t collect physical addresses or banking information, but we would assume that any government willing in its third day in office to demand that kind of information and compliance from Indymedia would have no reluctance to demand something similar of Hot Air. Beyond self-interest, the First Amendment keeps government in check, and any attempt to limit its reach leaves the federal government with too much power over its citizens.

–Ed, your research (and that of Declan McCallaugh of CBS) just out-and-out sucked on this story. You both should be ashamed of yourself. With a little research, either of you could have found out that the Acting Attorney General at the time (who supposedly had to approve the subpeona) was the Deputy Attorney General under Bush and that the US Attorney General who actually issued the subpeona was appointed by Bush’s Attorney General.

Jimbo3 on November 10, 2009 at 11:41 AM

Gotcha Jimbo, but if it was a Bush thing, why would Obaama continue it and I think that threats against delegates would be a reason to subpeona. Don’t you?

ORconservative on November 10, 2009 at 11:35 AM

–Government in Washington can’t just some to a stop for four or six months each time a new President comes into office. Yeah, I think this was probably something along the lines of a threat but the investigation is probably long over.

Jimbo3 on November 10, 2009 at 11:44 AM

Impeach and then prosecute their communist asses!

-Every last one of them.

Dave R. on November 10, 2009 at 11:48 AM

I posted all the site’s story links for June 25, 2008, but that post is not showing up for some reason.

Daggett on November 10, 2009 at 11:49 AM

Mark Boabaca on November 10, 2009 at 10:40 AM

This old squid thanks you and wishes you a happy birthday!

TugboatPhil on November 10, 2009 at 11:49 AM

The subpoena (PDF) from U.S. Attorney Tim Morrison in Indianapolis demanded “all IP traffic to and from http://www.indymedia.us” on June 25, 2008. It instructed Clair to “include IP addresses, times, and any other identifying information,” including e-mail addresses, physical addresses, registered accounts, and Indymedia readers’ Social Security Numbers, bank account numbers, credit card numbers, and so on.

Why did they need this information? To send them requests for campaign donations in 2012. And if any of them turned against Obama, to add them to the enemies list.

Steve Z on November 10, 2009 at 11:50 AM

Must be something-”grand jury subpoena“.

Tom

marinetbryant on November 10, 2009 at 11:52 AM

“na (PDF) from U.S. Attorney Tim Morrison in Indianapolis demanded “all IP traffic to and from http://www.indymedia.us” on June 25, 2008

So what exactly happened on June 25, 2008 ?????

JeffinSac on November 10, 2009 at 11:55 AM

A congress with intact gonads would investigate.

Expect nothing.

jeff_from_mpls on November 10, 2009 at 12:06 PM

Nothin’ to see here. Keep movin’.

Fuquay Steve on November 10, 2009 at 12:06 PM

So what exactly happened on June 25, 2008 ?????

JeffinSac on November 10, 2009 at 11:55 AM

I provided the links, look at the stories. There was a murder, a story by Obama’s buddy the Free Press commie, etc.

Daggett on November 10, 2009 at 12:07 PM

An interweb search for June 25, 2008 turns up only one newsworthy political event-
.
Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) will host a private meeting in Chicago with business leaders from across the country and a wide array of industries, including Ford Motor Co. president and CEO Alan Mulally.

Not very interesting although the question of who exactly he met with might be important. Must have been a comment from a commentor of the article that got their attention. I’m too lazy but if anyone has the time to look at those comments, I would be interested in any significant ones.

uskorea on November 10, 2009 at 12:07 PM

Jimbo3 on November 10, 2009 at 11:32 AM

Learn to read.

The article points out the gag order on the subpeona is highly uncharacteristic of this type of situation which, an order which, despite your fantasy, is being executed by the Obama Administration, not the Bush Administration. As you know, there was an election last year.

Get up to speed or get off the board.

jeff_from_mpls on November 10, 2009 at 12:09 PM

I doubt this has anything to do with Obama.

Jimbo3 on November 10, 2009 at 11:01 AM

Oh good lord people! Who cares which guy (or it seems, which Party) has the White House at the given time? It doesn’t change the fact.

Sweet Land of tyranny for thee I sing

bluegrass on November 10, 2009 at 11:12 AM

That is the fact that matters.

anuts on November 10, 2009 at 12:10 PM

One story ends with “VIVA Don White” and a few stories later is the announcement that Don White was found dead.

Daggett on November 10, 2009 at 12:11 PM

That June 2008 era happens to coincide with a meltdown a local Houston blogger had.

[DanMan on November 10, 2009 at 11:17 AM]

“The subpoena (PDF) from U.S. Attorney Tim Morrison in Indianapolis demanded “all IP traffic to and from http://www.indymedia.us” on June 25, 2008.”

I don’t know that an Indiana US Attorney would be interested in a Houston blogger, though the issues surrounding the blogger might relate to the US attorney’s jurisdiction.

I’d consider this story, first, though.

Dusty on November 10, 2009 at 12:12 PM

Remember when everybody went crazy because the Bush administration was looking into phone numbers to and from other countries? That was a media storm of unbelievable proportions!

Of course, THAT was George Bush. This is “The One.”

Star20 on November 10, 2009 at 12:14 PM

More evidence that this is not politically motivated by Obama.

Jimbo3 on November 10, 2009 at 11:24 AM

Honestly, would that change anything in your estimation?

anuts on November 10, 2009 at 12:14 PM

Well the Maoist Anita Dunn is:

done-done.

seven on November 10, 2009 at 12:21 PM

Yeah, Dusty, that one seems pretty bad. That 98219 link was the only one that caught me while skimming them though.

JamesLee on November 10, 2009 at 12:24 PM

Why would they need the physical addresses of everyone who reads Indymedia?

Whatsamatta, Holder? IndyMedia mole ready to rat you out?

Connie on November 10, 2009 at 12:26 PM

I don’t know that an Indiana US Attorney would be interested in a Houston blogger, though the issues surrounding the blogger might relate to the US attorney’s jurisdiction.

I’d consider this story, first, though.

Dusty on November 10, 2009 at 12:12 PM

That makes alot of sense to me, Dusty. Thanks.

Jimbo3 on November 10, 2009 at 12:30 PM

No Nazi analogies allowed.

Akzed on November 10, 2009 at 12:32 PM

“Why would they need the physical addresses of everyone who reads Indymedia?”

Obfuscation of the target of the investigation? The one post I singled out doesn’t bring up any comments that might be worse than the post itself, which is borderline inciteful and threatening, which may not in itself be the issue but maybe calls or e-mails made as a result. I don’t why no comments don’t show — inaccessible; purged; no one commented; or what.

Dusty on November 10, 2009 at 12:39 PM

Whatsamatta, Holder? IndyMedia mole ready to rat you out?

[Connie on November 10, 2009 at 12:26 PM]

You might consider an alternative to that, i.e., BPAOFS (Black Panther’s Are Our Friends Syndrome).

Dusty on November 10, 2009 at 12:42 PM

Mark Filip was the Acting Attorney General on January 23, 2009. He was the Deputy Attorney General appointed by Bush on March 10, 2008, was an Assistant US Attorney in Chicago and clerked for Scalia.

I doubt this has anything to do with Obama.

Jimbo3 on November 10, 2009 at 11:01 AM

Everywhere one looks there are dots to be connected.

Yoop on November 10, 2009 at 12:44 PM

“Why would they need the physical addresses of everyone who reads Indymedia?”

Obfuscation of the target of the investigation? The one post I singled out doesn’t bring up any comments that might be worse than the post itself, which is borderline inciteful and threatening, which may not in itself be the issue but maybe calls or e-mails made as a result. I don’t why no comments don’t show — inaccessible; purged; no one commented; or what.

Dusty on November 10, 2009 at 12:39 PM

–The post itself also said that some of the people who wrote it broke plants/threw papers around in some Department of Natural Resources offices, broke a window at, but otherwise unsuccessfully attacked, the offices of the firm who is planning the highway and threatened to “visit” some of these people again at their homes, children’s daycare centers, churches, etc. or whereever else “they may turn their backs”. It could be that the officials don’t have the names of all of the tresspassers or it could be that there were further attacks on some of these people by this group.

Jimbo3 on November 10, 2009 at 12:46 PM

was an Assistant US Attorney in Chicago and clerked for Scalia.

I doubt this has anything to do with Obama.

Jimbo3 on November 10, 2009 at 11:01 AM
Everywhere one looks there are dots to be connected.

Yoop on November 10, 2009 at 12:44 PM

–He was a prosecutor in Chicago from 1995 to 1999–before Obama came on the scene–and then worked in the Chicago office of one of the best firms in the nation. How many prosecutors do you know who are Democrats?

Jimbo3 on November 10, 2009 at 12:49 PM

Indymedia isn’t simply a site that aggregates news, they have been the electronic planning forum for violent terrorist acts. It was Indymedia who put many of the RNC attackers in touch with each other, and Indymedia “journalists” were caught with Starhawk in a house full of explosives, guns and knives at the RNC.

No sympathy here.Indymedia is a front for terror cells to communicate with each other. That they though Lord Hopenchange would protect them is both amusing and telling.

Rob Taylor on November 10, 2009 at 12:49 PM

Could have been an attempt to build a donor list for future solicitation. How else can they help ACORN get money after they’ve already given them the campaign list?

CLaFarge on November 10, 2009 at 12:54 PM

[Jimbo3 on November 10, 2009 at 12:46 PM]

Yeah, I noticed that but the info didn’t click as I responded as I was preoccupied the threats and finding a news report on those protests to verify the threats. But you’re right that the post catalogues crimes that did occur and which mingle with the life/health/safety concerns of a US attorney.

Dusty on November 10, 2009 at 12:59 PM

An interweb search for June 25, 2008 turns up only one newsworthy political event-
. . . .
Mr. Arrogant on November 10, 2009 at 11:30 AM

Hmm, but if you have enough information from one particular day, conveniently temporally disconnected from the day of the information you actually want, you can very quietly draw your parallels. Once the “right” people are indicted, or arrested, or at the least known you widen the net.

fronclynne on November 10, 2009 at 1:12 PM

How many prosecutors do you know who are Democrats?

Jimbo3 on November 10, 2009 at 12:49 PM

How many do you want? The list is quite long.

Democrat District Attorney Ronnie Earle

Democrat Attorney General Terry Goddard

Melanie Hines, a former statewide prosecutor, law school professor and registered Democrat

Keith Scully, an environmental lawyer and former deputy prosecutor, filed this morning as a Democratic candidate for King County prosecuting attorney.

There are a lot more, if you need them.

Yoop on November 10, 2009 at 1:16 PM

Everywhere one looks there are dots to be connected.

Yoop on November 10, 2009 at 12:44 PM

They have medication for that now days.

MarkTheGreat on November 10, 2009 at 1:17 PM

I mean that I doubt an investigation went from 0 to subpoenas in three days

Bleeds Blue on November 10, 2009 at 11:07 AM

Why? Obama was interfering in presidential issues, before he was even elected. Remember his little side trip when he traveled with a delegation, to the middle east?

Pelosi held back the 2009 budget from Bush, so Obama could have it.

Obama was giving speeches as if he were president, while Bush was still in the oval office.

I think Obama was barking orders long before he was innaugurated.

capejasmine on November 10, 2009 at 1:19 PM

Obvious to anyone with an IQ over room temp which excludes you.

Blake on November 10, 2009 at 11:38 AM

I see your still smarting over the spanking you were given yesterday.

MarkTheGreat on November 10, 2009 at 1:19 PM

Well. . . let’s start digging.

Indymedia’s stories from that day. (June 25th)

“Trans Pride March” SF – gay pride parade, probably not that one.
“Minor Party Presidential Candidate makes ballot” – CO – possibilities
“White Nostalgia and the DNC Protests” – CO – Hmmmm.
“Hoosiers upset about a highway” – IN – probably not
“SDS opposes ‘oppression’ in homeless community” – OR – Double Hmmm, with some probably Deb Frisch to boot.
“Leftists demand resignation of Sheriff” – TX – nah!
“SEIU rally with dancing and mariachi’s” – WA – promising for the SEIU angle. So 2/5 Hmmm’s.
“Anti-war group puts up fake tombstones” – WA – double nah!

My money is on something said either in connection with the 3rd party candidate or the SEIU rally with mariachi’s.

Jason Coleman on November 10, 2009 at 1:25 PM

How many prosecutors do you know who are Democrats?

Jimbo3 on November 10, 2009 at 12:49 PM
How many do you want? The list is quite long.

Democrat District Attorney Ronnie Earle

Democrat Attorney General Terry Goddard

Melanie Hines, a former statewide prosecutor, law school professor and registered Democrat

Keith Scully, an environmental lawyer and former deputy prosecutor, filed this morning as a Democratic candidate for King County prosecuting attorney.

There are a lot more, if you need them.

Yoop on November 10, 2009 at 1:16 PM

–Three of these are people who are/were running for elected political office. Yes, these people can be Democrats, but it’s because they’re running for elected political office. Most prosecutors are GOP law and order types.(Filip never ran for elected political office–he was appointed a federal judge in Illinois by Bush 2 and was one step below a US Attorney, which is a political appointment by the White House).

Jimbo3 on November 10, 2009 at 1:32 PM

Just out of Curiosity, what information does HA collect?
How long do they keep it?
What are they required to collect?

Juno77 on November 10, 2009 at 11:09 AM

HotAir only collects blood type and dental records. Oh, and how often you get your car’s oil changed.

Phew! For a while there I was afraid they knew how often I changed my underwear.

Socratease on November 10, 2009 at 1:39 PM

Isn’t calling themselves Independent, Indy – misleading? They lean left that isn’t exactly Independent.

Dr Evil on November 10, 2009 at 1:42 PM

This subpoena strikes me as pretty amateurish. Some justice wonk thought he could get out of doing some real investigation by going on a fishing expedition instead of coming up with a more specific set of needed evidence, and tried to misuse federal authority to do it. There ought to be a Senate investigation to find out whose idea it was, and fire their ass.

Socratease on November 10, 2009 at 1:44 PM

Three of these are people who are/were running for elected political office. Yes, these people can be Democrats, but it’s because they’re running for elected political office.

Jimbo3 on November 10, 2009 at 1:32 PM

Here is the specific question you asked:

“How many prosecutors do you know who are Democrats?”

I answered that question.

Yoop on November 10, 2009 at 1:44 PM

Ok, I’m gonna change my bet.

I’m gonna lay down my chip on something to do with this:

“Since then, local organizers have worked to put together legal support for those now facing charges (none extremely serious), while others have continued to act in response to the eviction. A militant office invasion against Bernardin Lochmueller and Associates (a deeply complicit contractor) in Evansville today ended in confrontations with managers and broken windows.” emphasis added

Jason Coleman on November 10, 2009 at 1:44 PM

We still don’t know what caused the original subpoena? What could have gotten the Justice Departments shorts in such a twist? The site leans left than who was commenting, and what was the gist of the comments?

Dr Evil on November 10, 2009 at 1:47 PM

Here is the specific question you asked:

“How many prosecutors do you know who are Democrats?”

I answered that question.

Yoop on November 10, 2009 at 1:44 PM

–Actually, you didn’t. You answered it for an Attorney General, a candidate for Prosecuting Attorney and an Attorney General, as well as a former prosecutor. There are tens or hundreds of lawyers acting as prosecutors in most states and cities. See, for instance: http://www.statesattorney.org/index2/about_the_office.html.

Jimbo3 on November 10, 2009 at 1:50 PM

The link doesn’t work here for some reason:

“About the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office

With nearly 900 attorneys, the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office is the second largest prosecutor’s office in the nation, second only to Los Angeles County. The Assistant State’s Attorneys in the Office prosecute all misdemeanor and felony crimes committed in Cook County, one of the largest counties in the nation encompassing nearly 1,000 square miles.”

Jimbo3 on November 10, 2009 at 1:51 PM

Dude. The subpoena was issued by a Bush appointee.

The investigation is probably still ongoing, hence the Administration’s silence.

Bleeds Blue on November 10, 2009 at 11:07 AM

Are you sure it wasn’t a Clinton appointee?

unclesmrgol on November 10, 2009 at 1:51 PM

What’s unusual about any of this? Obama demands a Moonbat site agree to be monitored by the man they live to serve; They pretend to “fight” it in court and, of course, they lose…

Then, when the liberals try to censor Hotair the same way, guess what? A precident has been set. The ten-thousand-and-first Unofficial Constitutional Amendment has been officially signed and ratified with all five required votes.

They started on this path decades ago. Why is everyone constantly surprised each time they take another step?

logis on November 10, 2009 at 1:51 PM

Obvious to anyone with an IQ over room temp which excludes you.

Blake on November 10, 2009 at 11:38 AM

I thought Obama’s grades, transcripts, and records were sealed? How did you know his IQ was below room temp? LOL

capejasmine on November 10, 2009 at 2:00 PM

The purge begins…of course they go after a “left” site first, to set the stage.
“unbiased” will be the charge as they then attack the many right leaning sites…kind of like saying the bill just based was supported by both sides of the aisle, since on Republican voted for it.

right2bright on November 10, 2009 at 2:04 PM

I mean that I doubt an investigation went from 0 to subpoenas in three days

Bleeds Blue on November 10, 2009 at 11:07 AM

They can go from investigation to subpoena to warrant IN THIRTY MINUTES. Or much longer, if you’re a muslim fanatic terrorist in the military.

dogsoldier on November 10, 2009 at 2:20 PM

Ed and AP, you might wanna put the EFF on speed dial. Its only a matter of time.

Bozo sends out goon squads to attack anyone who doesn’t agree with him.

dogsoldier on November 10, 2009 at 2:21 PM

I thought Obama’s grades, transcripts, and records were sealed? How did you know his IQ was below room temp? LOL
capejasmine on November 10, 2009 at 2:00 PM

The only alternative is that he is way too shy and unassuming to let the world know how gosh-darned smart he REALLY is.

Seriously though, when somebody goes to these extraordinary lengths to hide his background; it’s safe to assume he is doing it because he has something to hide.

logis on November 10, 2009 at 2:21 PM

Jimbo3 on November 10, 2009 at 1:51 PM

Like, yeah, dude. Them goalposts won’t move themselves & that chicken looks a little worn out, if you get my drift.

fronclynne on November 10, 2009 at 3:16 PM

And let me be clear. I don’t think any administration should be subpoenaing records like this or issuing gag orders (or National Security Letters, which were

Bleeds Blue 343 on November 10, 2009 at 11:28 AM

And also staunchly defended by the O’bama Administration.

http://www.worldcantwait.net/index.php/home-mainmenu-289/5940-obama-administration-defends-secrecy-of-national-security-letters

Now, about your “hypothesis” telling us how Bush could have prevented the 9/11 attacks…how’s that coming along?

Del Dolemonte on November 10, 2009 at 3:32 PM

I don’t know why people are putting such a negative spin on this.

Clearly, the Obama Campaign simply wants to make sure that its donor records are complete. Bank account and credit card numbers are just to facilitate the donation process.

malclave on November 10, 2009 at 4:05 PM

Daggett on November 10, 2009 at 11:53 AM

Nice work!

No matter who’s appointee, this further demonstrates that all gov’t by inherent nature eases towards the slirrery slope of tyranny. It is why we HAD checks and balances in our system to ensure the people the final arbiters of power.

While I ma heartily in favor of pursuing our enemies with extreme prejudice, it is with the proviso only our enemies that deserve such focus. My favorite line of Rumsfeld (whom I detest) was “the idea is not change the way we live, but to make the enemy change the way he does.” Then subsequently the Bush administration went and did precisely the opposite, putting in place many tools for our own repression, tools the Obama administration has kept in place.

One need merely point out how the RICO laws, meant only as an extreme measure to be used against ultra-violent organized crime, now used common place against far more mundane offenders. DA’s whose entire carreer’s rides only upon the chariot of how many they can convict regardless of guilt, has encouraged perversion of justice in pursuit of padded resumes.

Or how local PD’s can confiscate assets of the “suspected”, even after later found innocent, with proceeds to go to the Dept’s themselves or various Fraternal Order Org’s. If one realy wishes to visit how short a ride we are already to a corrupt Police State, one need only read CATO’s Balko report.

( I was going to link to the Balko report, but my explorer froze.)

The various forms and intentions why may shift with the ideological pendulum and party pet causes, but the expansion of Gov’t has continued apace for the better part of the last 100yrs. This has been true of all branches, executive, legislative and judicial. It is somewhat doubtful to me if this can any longer be reversed, the proverbial barn door after the horse has already bolted.
But daily now my belief that, if possible, will not be accomplished solely by peaceful means.

I am not encouraging extremist action by simply stating a beleif, but nor am I embracing delusion by denying what is cleary, to me, most evident. The precedent set by G.Washington of walking away from power has not oft been repeated, and less likely to occur with this cast of clowns.

I myself continue the fight to retain our liberties as best I am able from here till 1/20/13. But if the hand-writing upon the wall now is not replaced with more appealing text, to paraphrase Yoda, then it is Galt that I shall go, hmmm.

Archimedes on November 10, 2009 at 4:33 PM

Whatever it was for, I can only surmise it was in order to save the behind of some Marxist or entire Leftist organization from something.

For some odd reason, I didn’t assume first it was to protect the American people at large nor some Joe Citizen.

Dr. ZhivBlago on November 10, 2009 at 4:37 PM

Hmmmm after reading ALL the posts I actually learned stuff from the lefties. Maybe you are not as useless as you usually are.

It seems to me that this is a specific investigation that both administrations must have deemed necessary.

It also doesn’t seem directed at the website but at commenters… Are we the press? Are we protected as press?

We have long known that if someone threatens to kill the President or something the FBI or someone will want to look at the IP address of the threatener.

Soooo…. it is easy to be paranoid about an administration so tyrannical as this one…

I don’t find myself as alarmed over this as I am over the threats they make to Fox’s guests and the attempt to get other news organization to help them silence their critics.

I am assuming… (maybe naively) that the laws were probably followed in this subpoena.

petunia on November 10, 2009 at 5:29 PM

Are we the press? Are we protected as press?

petunia on November 10, 2009 at 5:29 PM

Pet peeve: “the press” does not mean established and approved news outlets. The Press referred to in the United States constitution’s first amendment is the general right to publish and distribute information. Written information.

Then again, I have never fully bought into the “chilling effect” nonsense that some try to read into the first amendment, either.

fronclynne on November 10, 2009 at 6:08 PM

Thank you for adopting the “conservative-leaning” meme Ed. It’s about time everyone gets on the same page. Seriously, if you are going to put something up like that it would be great if you posted some evidence to support that kind of claim. Maybe they are but the only evidence that has ever been offered is that “Liberals say so.” The commentators are conservative but they are not pretending to be middle of the road.

Mormon Doc on November 11, 2009 at 1:15 AM

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