by Tom Fitton –
Judicial Watch has had remarkable success in using the court process to obtain answers on the burgeoning email scandal, including from Hillary Clinton herself.
Since my report to you last week, events have moved quickly.
First, a JW Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit forced Mrs. Clinton to do what no other congressional committee, FBI, or Justice Department investigation has been able to do – submit information, under penalty of perjury, about her email system. The week began with the U.S. State Department submitting to a federal court an August 8 sworn declaration from former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton regarding federal records on her controversial email system. The declaration states:
I, Hillary Rodham Clinton, declare under penalty of perjury that the following is true and correct:
While I do not know what information may be “responsive” for purposes of this law suit, I have directed that all my e-mails on clintonemail.com in my custody that were or potentially were federal records to be provided to the Department of State, and on information and belief, this has been done.
As a result of my directive, approximately 55,000 pages of these emails were produced to the Department on December 5, 2014.
Cheryl Mills did not have an account on clintonemail.com. Huma Abedin did have such an account which was used at times for government business.
The document is signed by “Hillary Rodham Clinton.” The State Department was ordered by US District Court Judge Emmet Sullivan on July 31 to request that Clinton and her top aides confirm, under penalty of perjury, that they have produced all government records in their possession and to return any other government records immediately. The Court wanted State to ask Clinton, Huma Abedin and Cheryl Mills to describe their use of Hillary Clinton’s email server to conduct government business. The State Department produced last week the August 5 letter it sent to Mrs. Clinton, which included a copy of Judge Sullivan’s July 31 order, which reads: text of Judge Sullivan’s July 31 minute order:
As agreed by the parties at the July 31, 2015 status hearing, the Government shall produce a copy of the letters sent by the State Department to Mrs. Hillary Clinton, Ms. Huma Abedin and Ms. Cheryl Mills regarding the collection of government records in their possession. These communications shall be posted on the docket forthwith. The Government has also agreed to share with Plaintiff’s counsel the responses sent by Mrs. Clinton, Ms. Abedin and Ms. Mills. These communications shall also be posted on the docket forthwith. In addition, as related to Judicial Watch’s FOIA requests in this case, the Government is HEREBY ORDERED to: (1) identify any and all servers, accounts, hard drives, or other devices currently in the possession or control of the State Department or otherwise that may contain responsive information; (2) request that the above named individuals confirm, under penalty of perjury, that they have produced all responsive information that was or is in their possession as a result of their employment at the State Department. If all such information has not yet been produced, the Government shall request the above named individuals produce the information forthwith; and (3) request that the above named individuals describe, under penalty of perjury, the extent to which Ms. Abedin and Ms. Mills used Mrs. Clinton’s email server to conduct official government business. The Government shall inform the Court of the status of its compliance with this Order no later than August 7, 2015, including any response received from Mrs. Clinton, Ms. Abedin and Ms. Mills. Signed by Judge Emmet G. Sullivan on July 31, 2015.
You don’t need to be a legal expert to see that Mrs. Clinton’s declaration fails to comply with both Judge Sullivan’s court order and the State Department’s request. Clinton does not certify she turned over all federal records and provides no information on the extent that Abedin and Mills used her server.
Just to review, it was over four months ago, on March 2, 2015, that The New York Times reported then-Secretary Clinton used at least one non-“state.gov” email account to conduct official government business during her entire tenure as the secretary of state. It also was reported that Secretary Clinton stored these records on a non-U.S. government issued server at her home in Chappaqua, New York.
It is clear now that Mrs. Clinton doesn’t want to tell the whole truth about her email system. The court will very likely have more questions for her. Clinton’s declaration raises more questions than it answers and shows contempt for the court.
But this isn’t the only news.
Judge Sullivan issued an order late last Friday to the State Department explicitly instructing that all federal documents relating to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and her aides Huma Abedin and Cheryl Mills be preserved:
In view of  the Government’s status report, the Court hereby directs the Government to request that Mrs. Hillary Clinton, Ms. Huma Abedin, and Ms. Cheryl Mills i) not delete any federal documents, electronic or otherwise, in their possession or control, and ii) provide appropriate assurances to the Government that the above-named individuals will not delete any such documents. The Government shall inform the Court of the status of its compliance with this Order no later than August 12, 2015, including a copy of any assurances provided by Mrs. Clinton, Ms. Abedin and Ms. Mills that they will not delete any federal documents in their possession or control. Signed by Judge Emmet G. Sullivan on August 7, 2015.
The order was issued a little over an hour after Judicial Watch lawyers filed an urgent response informing Judge Sullivan of a plan to destroy federal records as reported by State to the court. Incredible!
Let’s not forget these developments come in response to a Judicial Watch Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit that seeks records about the controversial employment status of Huma Abedin, the former Deputy Chief of Staff to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. The lawsuit was reopened because of revelations about Hillary Clinton’s email records.
As if this wasn’t enough, there were even more major court and legal developments.
On Wednesday, the State Department filed correspondence in response to Judge Sullivan’s July 31 order requiring the State Department to report on his directive to take steps to ensure that Mrs. Clinton, Ms. Abedin, and Clinton aide Cheryl Mills did not destroy government records. The filing included a letter from Hillary Clinton’s lawyer David Kendall that read in part:
[W]e have voluntarily provided to the Department of Justice on August 6, 2015, the .pst file containing electronic copies of the 55,000 pages of emails on a thumb drive (along with two copies), which had been securely stored in my possession, after receiving from the Department of Justice an assurance that it would maintain this file in an appropriately secure manner and the Department’s opinion that such maintenance would satisfy any preservation obligations I am under. Similarly, Platte River Networks is today providing to the Department of Justice the server and related equipment on which emails to and from Secretary Clinton’s clintonemail.com were stored from 2009 to 2013 and which PRN took possession of in 2013. This is following the Department of Justice’s assurances to us and counsel for PRN that it would maintain the server equipment in an appropriately secure manner. The Department also gave counsel its opinion that such maintenance would satisfy any preservation obligations we have.
This Clinton lawyer’s letter in response to the court’s orders shows Mrs. Clinton continues to withhold material information from the court. Reports seem to confirm Mrs. Clinton is still withholding emails from the FBI and Justice Department.
In response, the Court acted quickly with yet another Court order yesterday! The order states:
On August 7, 2015, the State Department indicated that it would, by August 14, 2015, provide additional information about all servers, accounts, hard drives, or other devices in the Department’s possession or control that may contain information responsive to Plaintiff’s Freedom of Information Act request in this case. The State Department shall file a status report with such relevant information no later than 12:00 p.m. on August 14, 2015. Further, in light of the State Department’s August 12, 2015 status report, the August 14, 2015 report shall indicate the extent to which the State Department is working with other government agencies, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Department of Justice, to search Mrs. Clinton’s private email server for information relevant to this lawsuit. Signed by Judge Emmet G. Sullivan on August 13, 2015.
The State Department just filed its response. We issued a statement minutes ago:
The State Department filing is woefully deficient, misleading, and contemptuous of the court’s orders for complete disclosure about Mrs. Clinton’s email system and the systems of Ms. Abedin and Ms. Mills. The court, Judicial Watch and the American people are no closer to learning where all of the emails of Hillary and her top aides can be found. The State Department refused to answer questions about what is even in its possession. Now we know that the Obama administration and Hillary Clinton have joined hands in this email scandal. The State Department relies on the half-baked, vague declaration by Hillary Clinton and a misleading letter by her lawyer to try to avoid its obligations to produce records under the Freedom of Information Act. It is now clear that Mrs. Clinton is withholding servers and emails from the FBI and Justice Department, and Judge Sullivan is being misled to conclude otherwise. We will seek appropriate relief from the court.
I think it is fair to conclude that the courts are expecting quick action on Mrs. Clinton’s email system and that the Obama administration will learn that the courts will not allow it to bury her emails.
I have saved the best for last. Hillary Clinton, under incredible pressure, erupted, lost control, and attacked Judicial Watch for her email scandal! Her attack on the grassroots organization occurred during an interview on Univision. I responded on behalf of Judicial Watch with the following statement:
Hillary Clinton’s attacks on Judicial Watch for its success in suing for her State Department records under the Freedom of Information Act will not deter us from our nonpartisan work. Hillary Clinton has a nasty record of attacking and threatening those who try to hold her accountable to the law. It was Hillary Clinton who chose to conduct official government business on a separate email system. It was this decision by Hillary Clinton that placed classified information and the nation’s security at risk. In addition, it prevented government records from being properly searched as required by law in response to Judicial Watch’s Freedom of Information Act requests and lawsuits. A federal judge has led the way in requesting answers from her under penalty of perjury. Mrs. Clinton has a problem with the truth and obeying the law – and that is why a federal judge has requested information from Mrs. Clinton, the State Department, and her closest advisors. Blaming Judicial Watch for the email mess she made is pathetic.
Sure enough, this attack was a deflection from the truth that she was forced to turn over her “server” and some emails to the FBI and Justice Department almost at the same time she was blaming Judicial Watch for her problems!
I cannot say enough for how grateful I am for all of the hard work of my colleagues here at Judicial Watch. Hillary Clinton criticizes us because we are truth-tellers, persistent, and effective. Congress, the rest of the media, and federal “law enforcement” follow our lead.
Illegal Immigration Crisis
Weakens Citizens’ Voting Rights
Should it be permissible for government officials to count noncitizens in drawing up voting districts? The answer to this question has taken on added urgency with the illegal immigration crisis and the massive amounts of legal immigrants living in America. Our friends at the Center for Immigration Studies just this week announced that their analysis of census data shows that “the nation’s immigrant population (legal and illegal) hit a record high of 42.1 million in the second quarter of this year – an increase of 1.7 million since the same quarter of 2014.” This means that the noncitizens now comprise “13.3 percent of the nation’s total population – the largest share in 105 years.”
Keep these astonishing and troubling numbers in mind as I report to you our new Supreme Court “friend of court” brief, filed in partnership with the Allied Educational Foundation (AEF) The suit pushes back against a practice in Texas that undermines the voting rights of legal citizens. Last week (August 7), we filed an amici curiae brief in the U.S. Supreme Court in support of Texas residents challenging the “malapportionment” caused by a Texas election districting law that weakens the voting rights of citizens by including nonvoting noncitizens in state legislative districts.
Under the current Texas districting law, government officials draw districts for the Texas State Senate based upon total population, rather than the number of eligible voters. As a result, voters in districts with large numbers of non-voting-eligible aliens have increased voting and political power compared to voters in districts with higher numbers of legal residents. Voters in Texas’ urban centers have substantially inflated voting power over the fewer number of eligible voters who also reside in those districts. The situation is particularly acute in urban areas like Dallas and Houston, where up to 50 percent of the voting age population are not U.S. citizens.
The Judicial Watch-AEF brief argues that the districting law almost cuts in half the voting power of some Texas citizens:
Texas created districts that are equal in total population but decidedly unequal in citizen population. As a result, the votes of some of Texas’ citizens have, by some measures, almost twice the electoral power of the votes of other Texas citizens …
Texas’ legislators … argue that they are complying with the constitutional, “one person, one vote,” requirement, at the very moment that they are “weighting” the votes of their supporters by placing them in districts with greater numbers of nonvoting noncitizens. The ultimate consequence of this scheme is that legislators are able to enhance their odds of winning reelection without having to engage in the bothersome and time-consuming task of actually persuading voters to vote for them.
A little history is in order.
Back in June 2014, Texas citizens Sue Evenwel and Edward Pfenninger filed a lawsuit arguing that the law violated the “one person, one vote” clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. On November 5, 2014, a special panel of three federal court judges dismissed the suit, and on December 4, 2014, Evenwel and Pfenninger filed their notice of appeal to the Supreme Court.
This isn’t our first go on this issue. On March 6, 2015, Judicial Watch and AEF filed an amici brief in support of what turned out to be a successful effort to persuade the Supreme Court to take up the lawsuit.
The Judicial Watch/AEF brief recommends that the Supreme Court “enjoin the use of Texas’ Senate districts because they embody and rely on citizen malapportionment. Further, this Court should direct that Texas’ Senate districts be apportioned on the basis of citizen voting-age population.”
This Texas state legislative districting case has national policy implications because congressional districts are also drawn in a way that gives undue voting weight to voters in districts with large alien and ineligible voting age populations. For example, if only eligible citizen voters could be counted when creating congressional districts, many of the nation’s sanctuary cities with large immigrant noncitizen populations could have their electoral power reduced.
Let’s examine the faulty logic behind the current districting law and how this impacts the rights of legal citizens.
In Texas, some voters are given one-half of a vote simply if they live in areas that don’t have many illegal aliens and other non-citizen residents. We argue that the Supreme Court should apply the law to ensure record numbers of non-citizens in the United States aren’t used to deprive citizens of their right to have their votes treated equally under law. This Texas redistricting case exposed the dirty little secret that the illegal immigration crisis is being used by politicians to gain power at the expense of the voting rights of U.S. citizens.
Our efforts here do not occur in a vacuum. As our long-time readers know, JW has been working tenaciously over the years to improve ballot integrity and to preserve the voting rights of legal citizens. Attorneys with our Election Integrity Project, for instance, filed successful lawsuits and other legal actions against state government officials who have failed to maintain clean voter registration lists. When ineligible names, which often include noncitizens, appear on voter rolls, it increases the likelihood of fraud. Noncitizens are officially counted in a way that takes away the voting rights of citizens. This political power, stolen from American citizens, is one reason many politicians don’t want to enforce laws against illegal immigration and want to increase the already record number of legal and illegal immigrants.
The Supreme Court should rule on the Texas issue by June of next year.
Judicial Watch Civil Rights Suit Challenges
Race-Based Separatist Vote in Hawaii
Could the U.S. find itself back down to 49 states instead of 50? Since the news media is obviously obsessed with any news items involving racial strife, we find it interesting that so little attention has been given to this story out of Hawaii: With a wink and a nod from Team Obama, leftists in Hawaii are conducting a racially discriminatory campaign that could tear the state apart.
That’s why we have filed a lawsuit in United States District Court for the District of Hawaii that seeks to stop a scheme by the State of Hawaii to use a voting list restricted by both race and viewpoint to conduct an election for Native Hawaiian “self-government.” The suit is filed on behalf of five Hawaiian residents and one Texas resident of Hawaiian ancestry, who, either because of their race or viewpoint, are explicitly denied the right to vote, in violation of the U.S. Constitution and the Voting Rights Act.
On August 13, 2015, Judicial Watch filed the lawsuit against the state of Hawaii, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs (OHA) the Native Hawaiian Roll Commission (NHRC), and other State officials and agents, asking the court to declare that the process required to register for the Native Hawaiian voter roll violates constitutional rights found in the First, Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments, as well as federal voting laws.
An enrollment list is being created under Act 195, the 2011 Hawaii law that authorizes the NHRC to create a list of “Native Hawaiians” who would be eligible to submit amendments to the State constitution at a planned constitutional convention and to vote on issues concerning the sovereignty of the “Native Hawaiian people.” Act 195 defines a “Native Hawaiian” as any person whom the government determines to be a direct descendant of the State’s aboriginal peoples.
On July 20, 2012, using taxpayer funds from the State’s Office of Hawaiian Affairs, the NHRC launched the Kana’iolowalu campaign, opening a registration process for native Hawaiians who desired to vote for a new race-based sovereign government. A person may register for the Kana’iolowalu if, besides meeting the law’s racial requirements, that individual has “maintained a significant cultural, social, or civic connection to the Native Hawaiian community” and “wishes to participate” in organizing an anticipated “Native Hawaiian governing entity.” Essentially, a race-based enrollment list of native Hawaiians has been created in accordance with this campaign.
Your JW obtained the list under a June 3, 2015, court order issued in an open records lawsuit that our legal team filed against the Roll Commission, seeking the release of documents related to the campaign. If you are a Hawaiian, I encourage you are to search the list to see if your name was added. The Obama administration has been criticized for taking executive action toward “the reestablishment of a government-to-government relationship with the Native Hawaiian community.” The regime in Washington appears to have a stake in the divisiveness that would naturally flow out of the action in Hawaii.
The new federal lawsuit alleges Hawaii and other defendants have unlawfully restricted voter access by requiring voters to certify particular racial characteristics and to acknowledge their agreement with the Hawaiian “sovereignty” movement. Hawaiian residents wishing to register for the native Hawaiian voting roll are required to affirm all three of the following declarations:
· Declaration One. I affirm the unrelinquished sovereignty of the Native Hawaiian people, and my intent to participate in the process of self-governance.
· Declaration Two. I have a significant cultural, social or civic connection to the Native Hawaiian community.
· Declaration Three. I am a Native Hawaiian: a lineal descendant of the people who lived and exercised sovereignty in the Hawaiian islands prior to 1778, or a person who is eligible for the programs of the Hawaiian Homes Commission Act, 1920, or a direct lineal descendant of that person.
Judicial Watch argues:
[T]he restrictions on registering for the Roll violate the U.S. Constitution, including the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, the Fifteenth Amendment, the First Amendment, and the Due Process Clauses of the Fourteenth and Fifth Amendments; and federal law, including the Civil Rights Act of 1871, 42 U.S.C. § 1983, and Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, 52 U.S.C. § 10301.
Judicial Watch argues that the state’s requirements, which exclude certain Native Hawaiians from registering for the roll, represent violations of numerous constitutional rights, primarily the Fifteenth Amendment protection against voting restrictions based on race:
The defendants fully intended to restrict who may register for the Roll on the basis of ancestry, as shown by the plain text of Act 195 as well as the text of the online registration procedures, and as shown by numerous public statements by the defendants, including those made on their registration website…Act 195 and the defendants’ registration procedures deny and abridge the plaintiffs’ rights to vote on account of race, in violation of the Fifteenth Amendment.
The lawsuit also alleges a violation of the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment:
Act 195 and the registration process used by the defendants discriminate against the plaintiffs on account of the fact that they are not Native Hawaiians, as defined by their ancestry. Accordingly, Act 195 and the registration process used by the defendants discriminate against the plaintiffs on account of their race…Act 195 and the registration process used by the defendants violate the plaintiffs’ rights under the Fourteenth Amendment to the equal protection of the laws.
Additionally, the voting roll procedures violate the Voting Rights Act:
Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act, 52 U.S.C. § 10301, proscribes any “qualification or prerequisite to voting or standard, practice, or procedure . . . imposed or applied by any State or political subdivision in a manner which results in a denial or abridgement of the right of any citizen of the United States to vote on account of race or color.” The defendants fully intended to restrict who may register for the Roll on the basis of race. Act 195 and the registration process used by the defendants restrict who may register for the Roll on the basis of individuals’ Hawaiian ancestry, which is a proxy for race.
Who would believe that in this day and age U.S. citizens are being denied access to the right to vote explicitly because of their race and their points of view! Using a race-based enrollment list to help radicals in Hawaii tear the state apart and break away from the United States of America is a violation of the U.S. Constitution and basic federal voting rights law. And that Hawaiian officials would prevent you from voting if you don’t sign up for their racial apartheid theories is an affront to the First Amendment. Our clients who are being denied their core constitutional rights believe courts can’t shut down this racist scheme soon enough.
Here, I’d like to recognize some of the key players in this case.
The Grassroot Institute of Hawaii, a Hawaii-based think tank, has been helping Judicial Watch to investigate Hawaii’s plan for a race-based election. Keli’i Akina, Ph.D., President of the Grassroot Institute and a plaintiff in the case said, “Instead of OHA and the State continuing to waste millions of dollars on the pursuit of a political sovereignty campaign, they need to use these precious funds to meet the real needs of Hawaiians for housing, jobs, education, and health care. Given the low enrollment in the certified Native Hawaiian Roll, it is clear that the Native Hawaiian people themselves have rejected OHA-backed efforts to create a racially exclusive nation. The time has come to stop dividing Hawaii’s people and start uniting them.”
Robert Popper, director of Judicial Watch’s Election Integrity Project, is Judicial Watch’s lead attorney on the lawsuit. Mr. Popper was formerly deputy chief of the Voting Section of the Civil Rights Division of the Justice Department.
Michael Lilly of the Honolulu law firm Ning, Lilly & Jones is serving as Judicial Watch’s local counsel for the plaintiffs.
Our new lawsuit is getting a lot attention in the media. All Americans should be concerned about this racist assault on the U.S. Constitution. In addition, we expect that the Obama administration will further push this apartheid-like movement using federal tax dollars, which we are also prepared to counter. I’ll report back to you on this issue as events warrant.
Tom Fitton – President
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