SCOTUS Justice Goes NUCLEAR On Biden In Leaked Audio

OPINION:  This article contains commentary which may reflect the author’s opinion

When comparing the severe prison sentences imposed on the January 6 defendants to those of similarly situated left-wing protesters and rioters—the vast majority of whom receive slaps on the wrist, if any accountability at all—Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch grilled Solicitor General Elizabeth Prelogar.

Oral arguments in a case brought by former Pennsylvania police officer Joseph Fischer, one of several hundred defendants charged on January 6 with an unspecified crime for “obstruction of an official proceeding,” are now being heard by the court. The new legal doctrine, which has only been applied to the defendants from January 6, is based on the Enron corruption incident.

The majority of left-wing protestors who engage in comparable behavior are not even charged, despite January 6 defendants facing felony charges in addition to a few misdemeanors. The DOJ has not been hunting pro-Palestine protesters who have stormed the White House, abortion protesters, far-left militants who attacked federal courthouses in 2020, or thousands of other left-wing protesters who have occupied federal buildings and obstructed proceedings. Nor has there been a four-year manhunt to find trespassers from the 2020 riots, thousands of whom trespassed on federal property.

Gorsuch challenged Prelogar on the differences in sentence during the arguments on Wednesday, citing several instances, such as the demonstrations against Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s appointment. “Would entrance to a federal courthouse or a trial being disrupted by a sit-in qualify? Would a heckler at the State of the Union address or in today’s crowd qualify? Gorsuch asked.

“Would pulling a fire alarm before a vote qualify for 20 years in federal prison?” he continued, referencing the incident where Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-NY) pulled a fire alarm and caused Congress to pause a vote. Bowman was given a slap on the wrist where he avoided jail time and was merely required to write an apology essay about his actions.

Prelogar responded by referring to real world examples cited by Gorsuch as “hypotheticals.” She went on to state that proving intent is a key aspect of the statute and insinuated that malicious intent was evident in the case of Trump supporters on January 6, though this is not the case with “minor disruptions” from left-wing protesters. “So that means that if you have some minor disruption or delay or some minimal outburst, we don’t think it falls within the actus reus to begin with,” she said.
My outbursts require the court to reconvene after the proceeding has been brought back into line, or the pulling of the fire alarm, the vote has to be rescheduled, or the protest outside of a courthouse makes it inaccessible for a period of time. Are those all federal felonies subject to 20 years in prison?” Gorsuch followed up.

“So, with some of them it would be necessary to show nexus. So with respect to the protest outside the courthouse, we’d have to show that yes, they were aiming at proceeding,” she continued, prompting Gorsuch to point out that they clearly were attempting to halt the proceeding.

Yes, and then we’d also have to be able to prove that they acted corruptly and this sets a stringent mens rea. It’s not even just the mere intent to obstruct. We have to show that also, but we have to show that they had corrupt intent in acting in that way,” she continued. “But I guess what I would say is that to the extent that your hypotheticals are pressing on the idea of a peaceful protest, even one that’s quite disruptive, it’s not clear to me that the government would be able to show that each of those protesters had corrupt intent.”

Over 1,400 Americans have been charged by the Biden DOJ thus far in relation to the Capitol protests on January 6. Even now, some four hours after the small-scale disturbance, the nationwide search is ongoing. For their nonviolent behavior, hundreds of defendants have received sentences of months or even years in prison; of those found guilty, 64% received prison sentences.

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