LOUISVILLE, Ky. — A federal judge has rejected President Donald Trump’s free speech defense against a lawsuit accusing him of inciting violence against protesters at a campaign rally.
Trump’s lawyers sought to dismiss the lawsuit by three protesters who say they were roughed up by his supporters at a March 1, 2016 rally in Louisville, Kentucky. They argued that Trump didn’t intend for his supporters to use force.
Two women and a man say they were shoved and punched by audience members at Trump’s command. Much of it was captured on video and widely broadcast during the campaign, showing Trump pointing at the protesters and repeating “get them out.”
Judge David J. Hale in Louisville ruled Friday that the suit against Trump, his campaign and three of his supporters can proceed. Hale found ample facts supporting allegations that the protesters’ injuries were a “direct and proximate result” of Trump’s actions, and noted that the Supreme Court has ruled out constitutional protections for speech that incites violence.
“It is plausible that Trump’s direction to ‘get ’em out of here’ advocated the use of force,” the judge wrote. “It was an order, an instruction, a command.”
Plaintiffs Kashiya Nwanguma, Molly Shah and Henry Brousseau allege that they were physically attacked by several members of the audience, including Matthew Heimbach, Alvin Bamberger and an unnamed defendant they have yet to be able to identify.
Bamberger later apologized to the Korean War Veterans Association, whose uniform he wore at the rally. He wrote that he “physically pushed a young woman down the aisle toward the exit” after “Trump kept saying ‘get them out, get them out,” according to the lawsuit.
Heimbach, for his part, sought to dismiss the lawsuit’s discussion of his association with a white nationalist group and of statements he made about how Trump could advance the group’s interests. The judge declined, saying such information could be important context when determining punitive damages.
The judge also declined to remove allegations that Nwanguma, an African-American, was the victim of racial, ethnic and sexist slurs from the crowd at the rally. This context may support the plaintiffs’ claims of negligence and incitement by Trump and his campaign, the judge said.
“While the words themselves are repulsive, they are relevant to show the atmosphere in which the alleged events occurred,” Hale wrote.
Lawyers for Trump and his campaign also argued that they cannot be held liable because they had no duty to the plaintiffs, who assumed the risk of injury when they decided to protest at the rally. The judge countered that under the law, every person has a duty to every other person to use care to prevent foreseeable injury.
“In sum, the Court finds that Plaintiffs have adequately alleged that their harm was foreseeable and that the Trump Defendants had a duty to prevent it,” the judge ruled, referring the case to a federal magistrate, Judge H. Brent Brennenstuhl, to handle preliminary litigation, discovery and settlement efforts.
April 13th, 2017
Someone needs to get to her new home in Wyoming! What fun!
Maybe I can stop in and say “HI!” to Dick Cheney?
April 7th, 2017
Our Loser-in-Chief has lost again, this time in his attempt to torpedo the Consent Decree, settled after the investigation by the Department of Justice into practices of the Baltimore Police Department.
It all started with a complaint, after the Freddie Gray shooting and subsequent unrest in Baltimore, against the Baltimore Police and the City, alleging Constitutional violations, and then an intense investigation of the Baltimore Police Department. Since tRump’s inauguration, and after the settlement was reached, a Motion was filed by “the Government” in essence requesting “an additional opportunity to consider whether it wants the Court to enter the decree at all, or at least the current version of it.” From the Order:
The parties have already agreed to the draft before the Court. It would be extraordinary for the Court to permit one side to unilaterally amend an agreement already jointly reached and signed. Moreover, early in the Court‟s review of the joint motion, but after the new administration was in office in Washington, the Government affirmed its commitment to this draft and urged the Court to sign it. (Tr. of Hrg. 7:10-24, ECF No. 20.) The Defendants, for their part, continue to urge entry of the proposed decree, consistent with the earlier joint submission. (Statement of Acting City Solicitor David Ralph in open Court, Hrg. on April 6, 2017, transcript not yet available.)
As between the parties, this case is settled. All that remains is for the Court to make its determinations under United States v. North Carolina, and it has done so above.1 The case is no longer in a phase where any party is unilaterally entitled to reconsider the terms of the settlement; the parties are bound to each other by their prior agreement. The time for negotiating the agreement is over.
As always, the footnotes are where it’s at, in this case pointing out the paucity of tRump’s arguments:
There’s a distinct trend when tRump’s administration goes to court. L-O-S-E-R! Now, tRump, just stop it, and take all these federal court orders and decisions into account before you stick your foot in it again.
April 7th, 2017
No surprise. BUT, many issues not addressed, and many comments not registering, much less considered, it seems. Minnesota Pollution Control Agency “reviewed” the Lab USA Environmental Assessment and Comments and determined that:
And the bottom line:
Here’s the full document, check it out:
Note they do not address the Water Tank Mound, which comprises much of the Red Wing lay down yard site, and there is no acknowledgement, much less characterization or use in modeling, of the La Crosse incinerator ash that’s trucked in, and something like 50% of that is old railroad ties full of creosote. Pretty toxic stuff, that creosote.
Something odd — if not for a little birdie, I’d not have known that this was issued, no service, no notice, nada. ??? Thank you, little birdie!!!
April 2nd, 2017
“Throw him the hell out of here!” and worse:
March 30th, 2017
Each day it’s something. In the beginning, it was a flurry of Executive Orders and Memoranda that were poorly thought out, worsely executed, even posted on White House website with different wording than what was actually signed — I know because I was tracking them closely as they were coming out and posting them and resulting court losses via Temporary Restraining Orders and decisions here and here and here, for example.
A friend was looking at how to frame this problem, and branded it “TrumpCo.” TrumpCo is what’s developed from Trump’s claim that government should be run like a business, and his efforts to initiate that plan. Just the facts about how tRump runs businesses (into the ground, fact check on that, yes, multiple bankruptcies) should give us pause, but deeper thought about the purpose and functions of government should stop this in its tracks. Dream on… these guys are relentless. Meanwhile, Republican #notmyPresident Donald Trump is putting his son-in-law Jared Kushner in charge of ??(hard to tell, Senior White House Advisor, etc?), his daughter Ivanka installed in an office and requesting security clearance, and sons on US taxpayer business trips, WTF?
Son-in-law Jared Kushner has a large role in TrumpCo:
The Office of American Innovation is expected to tackle domestic issues such as Veterans’ Affairs, workforce development and opioid addiction, the Associated Press reports.
“The government should be run like a great American company,” Kushner told the Washington Post of the initiative, one of the few interviews he has granted since becoming a senior adviser. “Our hope is that we can achieve successes and efficiencies for our customers, who are the citizens.”