Andy Martin slams Barack Obama and Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan in Illinois Supreme Court filing, for mendacity in “Blagogate/Obamagate”
What is Barack Obama hiding and when is he going to tell the truth about his staff’s role in Blagogate?
Internet powerhouse and legal scholar Martin says that Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich, however loathsome he may appear, is entitled to due process of law. Martin accuses Chicago media of fostering a “lynch mob” environment in the state.
Following is the main petition being submitted by Andy to the Illinois Supreme Court. Copies of other documents, as well as attachments of court filings, are available on request.
SUPREME COURT OF ILLINOIS
PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS,
ROD BLAGOJEVICH, Governor
MOTION FOR LEAVE TO APPEAR AND BE HEARD IN THIS PROCEEDING,
AND LEAVE TO OPPOSE THE ATTORNEY GENERAL’S “BRIEF IN SUPPORT
OF MOTION FOR LEAVE TO FILE VERIFIED COMPLAINT…”
DATED: December 12, 2008
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MOTION FOR LEAVE TO APPEAR AND BE HEARD IN THIS PROCEEDING,
AND LEAVE TO OPPOSE THE ATTORNEY GENERAL’S “BRIEF IN SUPPORT
OF MOTION FOR LEAVE TO FILE VERIFIED COMPLAINT…”
Attorney General Lisa Madigan (“the AG”) and President-elect Barack Obama are attempting to stage a political coup against the people of this state by using this Court as a political instrument to accomplish their goals.
This Court should decline the invitation to participate.
The AG, and others acting in concert with her, are not acting out of disinterested motives but rather are maneuvering to seize the Governor’s office for their own personal benefit, which is precisely the type of behavior that they attribute to their opponent the Governor.
Some of the justices are personally familiar with the participants in this proceeding. Movant submits it would irretrievably damage and embarrass this Court if the justices thereof were seen to be playing political favorites and favoring the “Madigan Family” to the exclusion of the Illinois Constitution and the general public interest.
Courts usually avoid constitutional questions when there are narrower, non-constitutional grounds to deny relief. Here, the court is being used as a political bludgeon to short-circuit and avoid proper constitutional procedures. The AG’s father has realized that he apparently lacks the votes to remove the Governor by impeachment in the General Assembly, so he is using his daughter and her public office to remove the Governor through unprecedented judicial action amounting to a usurpation of power and a de facto political coup.
This Court should properly defer to the traditional Constitutional remedies and summarily dismiss the proceeding, suggesting that impeachment is an available and unexhausted avenue available to all involved.
The Court is further compromised as an institution by the machinations of Barack Obama, his employees and his supporters. Abner Mikva, a prominent Obama supporter, has suddenly surfaced as a “Special Assistant Attorney General” to send a political message to this Court: Obama wants action.
Why is Obama concerned? He is apprehensive because he wishes to avoid producing his staff members for interrogation by the media, and he has failed to produce a log of his staff’s contacts with the Governor despite the alleged “emergency” nature of the Governor’s misconduct and despite the lynch mob atmosphere that has triggered a proceeding in this Court.
Obama’s lassitude, in view of his claims and the AG’s claims of an “emergency,” suggests he is trying to avoid scrutiny of his role and his staff’s roles in “Blagogate.”
In the current situation, Obama’s staff may have been caught red-handed engaging in back-room politics with the Governor. Mr. Obama wants this Court to protect him from the consequences of his long history of involvement in Chicago politics and support for Daley Machine policies and public officials.
This Court should decline Obama’s invitation. Where, as here, legislative remedies are available and unexhausted, Obama, the AG and their political organizations should not be able to substitute their preferred remedy of judicial activism as a substitute for traditional constitutional processes.
In this “Opposition” the undersigned will attempt to convince the Court that (1) he has standing to be heard in this matter, as a personally and directly interested person; (2) that the AG does not have the exclusive authority to conduct political cases in this or any other court; (3) that the “facts” are not as they are alleged to be by the AG; and that (4) that there is no precedent, nor does the AG cite any, for judicial usurpation of the normal political process where there is a conflict between the legislature and the Governor.
For all of the foregoing reasons, the undersigned asks this Court to summarily deny the AG’s petition as facially insubstantial and unmeritorious and to grant him leave of court to appear and be heard.
THE UNDERSIGNED HAS STANDING TO APPEAR,
PARTICIPATE AND BE HEARD IN THIS PROCEEDING
1. The Undersigned-an overview
The undersigned probably does not exaggerate when he states he is probably the person with the longest experience still active in the courts and politics of this state who has an unblemished record of fighting corruption at every level of Illinois state government.
As a young law student at the University of Illinois College of Law, the undersigned was asked by reporters at the Chicago Daily News to help them research legal issues and study factual claims involving claims against two justices of this Court (Ray Klingbiel and Roy Solfisburg) who were accused of impropriety.
Although the undersigned was only a small part of the team that exposed and helped remove the justices, he paid a very high price for his honesty and integrity.
Somewhere in the basement of the Supreme Court Building, the files in MR 1207 may still contain the affidavits of two men whom Barack Obama this week profusely praised as paragons of integrity, Senator Paul Douglas and Senator Paul Simon. Both senators furnished affidavits to this Court of the undersigned’s integrity.
Like the proverbial mailman, who is dauntless in the face of bad weather, in the ensuing decades the undersigned has pursued corruption where he has found it, in the executive, legislative and judicial branches, and in both federal and state agencies, see e.g. AndyMartin.com for details.
2. The undersigned’s political issues in this proceeding
a. If the undersigned is a corruption fighter, why is he here opposing the AG? The AG claims to be fighting corruption. Unfortunately, by her current actions in filing this proceeding the AG is fostering corruption, not fighting it.
b. The undersigned was the first to question the suspicious behavior of the U. S. Attorney and FBI (Appendix pp. 3-8), though others have now joined the chorus of questioning, Appendix pp. 13-14. The undersigned announced earlier this week that he would be a candidate in any special election in 2009 or in 2010 for the seat. Thereafter, the undersigned decided to forego being a political candidate if the Governor decided to appoint the undersigned to serve on a nonpartisan basis, Appendix pp. 9-12.
As soon as the AG learned that the undersigned was working diligently to claim the senate seat, she petitioned this Court to prevent the Governor from making the appointment.
c. The undersigned was on the statewide primary ballot in 2006, and again in 2008, so his standing claims of being a candidate are both bona fide and documented by an extensive history of political involvement.
3. Based on the foregoing direct, personal interest as a senate candidate, the undersigned has a particularized, personal interest in this matter and the standing to appear, to be heard and to participate fully in any and all proceedings. Someone is ultimately going to claim a vacant senate seat. The undersigned has every right to come forward to prevent the AG from gaining control of the process in this forum, in the General Assembly or anywhere else, to protect his own rights as a candidate.
THE ATTORNEY GENERAL DOES NOT HAVE THE EXCLUSIVE
POWER TO INITIATE POLITICAL PROCEEDINGS IN THIS COURT
It is a well worn rubric of Illinois law that the Attorney General is the sole legal officer of the State. No citation is necessary for that unexceptionable proposition. But the Attorney General is not the chief political officer of the State, and she certainly does not have the right to exclude other voices when she is advancing and articulating positions in which she has a personal conflict of interest and self-interest.
In addition, neither the Illinois Constitution, Article V, § 6, nor Rule 382 of this Court, foreclose the filing of a petition by any interested citizen. Unlike common or garden variety litigation, where the AG is “supreme,” the AG’s supremacy does not extend to constitutional disputes involving political questions in which the taxpayers qua taxpayers are only peripherally interested and in which the rights and powers of political officials and candidates for public office are being adjudicated.
Thus, while the AG has exclusive authority to speak for the State on matters of state policy, the question of whether to remove the Governor from office is not a matter of State policy but rather a political question in which this Court must ensure the fullest possible participation by every voice in the State.
To do less than allow the public to be heard would raise the suspicion that the Court was being influenced and controlled by political cronyism instead of the Illinois Constitution.
THE ATTORNEY GENERAL HAS INFLATED AND MISSTATED THE FACTS
Central to an understanding of the mendacity of the AG’s arguments in this Court is a careful analysis and parsing of her claims of “facts.”
1. The AG argues that a vast series of interlocking conspiracies involving the Governor has been documented, and that all of the AG’s allegations are supported by proven “facts.” That is not true. These conspiracies may exist, but they have not yet been proven.
2. In dealing with facts, this Court must apply a rigorous standard of scrutiny in determining what is real and what is unreal.
3. Despite the fact that the Governor has allegedly been under scrutiny for five (5) years, the USA lacks sufficient “facts” to support a Grand Jury indictment. This Court is well aware that obtaining a grand jury indictment is not a particularly high standard to satisfy. If the USA lacks sufficient facts to satisfy the minimal standard for a grand jury indictment, the proverbial “ham sandwich,” how can the AG justify her inflated “factual” claims against the Governor? She cannot.
3. The limited facts we do have are contradictory and have been edited in a self-serving manner. What has been produced in public is an “Affidavit” that takes the facts in the order in which they support the USA and FBI, not the order in which they support the provable truth at trial. Could this court allow a finding of guilt to stand if it were based on self-servingly redacted “facts” currently available? Not likely.
When the only truth, the only “facts,” we have are those which have been massaged and edited and manipulated by prosecutors, then the facts are not facts at all. They are one side’s version of an inflammatory and controversial proceeding.
4. As the undersigned noted in his first column on the controversy (Appendix pp. 3-8), what was stunning about this transparently outrageous example of prosecutorial abuses was that no “victims” were identified in the FBI Affidavit. Sam Zell and others at the Chicago Tribune have honestly stated they were not aware of any pressure to dismiss employees.
Likewise, all of the “extortees” in the “senate seat sale” matter have denied being extorted. So where are the undisputed and documented facts sufficient to establish victims who will testify to being victims? There are none. On the contrary, when the “victims” deny the existence of crucial elements of the offenses of which the Governor is being accused by the AG, it is clear there are no credible facts in this matter.
Is the Governor foul-mouthed on occasions? Who among us has not used expletives on occasion? Is his wife also a salty-worded lady? Undoubtedly. But since there is no evidence she committed a crime, why are her vulgar comments included in the “facts” of the FBI’s affidavit?
“Facts” are being misused merely to smear and scandalize and prejudice potential grand and petit jurors, and to smear the Governor and provide cover for precisely the public lynching that is now being sought in this Court.
The Governor has been chosen by the voters twice. He should not be removed from office on the capricious “facts” and hearsay allegations contained in the record before this Court. There is, moreover, a very wide gap between foul-mouthed behavior and federal criminal activity; but no one could be aware of that gap from reading the inflammatory coverage in the news media or the allegations of federal offices of a “crime spree” in their public appearances.
5. In sum and substance, the AG has presented the type of lattice work of “facts” that she would quickly condemn and demolish if any criminal defendant in a case where she represented the People were making similar “factual” assertions. There is only one standard for facts: the full and fair truth. And the truth has yet to see the light of day in “Blagogate.”
6. Finally, Barack Obama and his staff appear to be manipulating and concealing relevant facts which might place the Governor in a more understandable light. Last month, David Axelrod said Obama and the Governor had met to discuss the senate seat. This week, in an episode reminiscent of Watergate, Mr. Axelrod claimed his factual statements were erroneous. All that was lacking was for Axelrod to use the term “inoperative,” to raise the specter of Watergate.
Mr. Obama, moreover is being very leisurely about producing the “log” he has promised to document his staff’s contacts with the Governor’s staff. If this matter is such an emergency, why is Obama acting so casually? Perhaps he is expecting the AG to act as a beard for his own staff’s involvement in the controversy, and thereby to avoid having to address these issues, by allowing the AG to short-circuit the investigatory process with an immediate public lynching, all courtesy of this Court.
Likewise, the AG has come to this Court and asked the Court to remove her political opponent, the Governor. That is not the proper role for the Court at this time.
7. If the Court disagrees with the undersigned and believes that further proceedings are necessary, the Court should invoke the testimony-taking provisions of rule 382 and direct testimony at which all interested parties, including the undersigned, can subpoena, confront and cross-examine the AG’s witnesses under oath, with full subpoena power for reluctant witnesses such as Mr. Obama and his staff.
Then and only then could the Court be confident it has a factual record on which to base future action.
Until testimony is taken under oath by this Court, and there is confrontation and cross-examination of the participants in the alleged conspiracies, and genuine “truth-seeking” is under way, this Court lacks any factual record on which to act. The AG’s unsubstantiated factual claims lack any credibility or authenticity and must be disregarded.
IMPEACHMENT IS THE PROPER CONSTITUTIONAL REMEDY
The Illinois Constitution provides for the process of Impeachment to remove Executive Officials, Article IV,
V, § 14. Impeachment of corrupt public officials is an ancient common law remedy that appears in virtually every state constitution in this nation, as well as in the U. S. Constitution. Impeachment is not intended to be quick and easy; on the contrary it is a complex process designed to afford the accused due process similar to that which the official would receive in a criminal proceeding.
There is no doubt that in the current controversy impeachment could be invoked to indict and try the governor as provided for in § 14. But the Madigan Family is apparently aware that it lacks the legislative votes to convict and remove the Governor through normal constitutional processes, and so has adopted the brazen strategy of asking this court to make history by misconstruing common English and accepted definitions of “disability” to remove the Governor by judicial fiat.
The Court would be irreparably damaged as an institution if it succumbed to the temptation to act in this preemptory and inappropriate manner.
It is a truism of the law that courts avoid extreme remedies when less extreme and nonjudicial remedies are available. There is no reason for this Court to assume jurisdiction of the controversy when the Constitution affords the General Assembly the plenary power to proceed with impeachment and there is no evidence of reluctance on the part of legislators to proceed in that manner.
But even if the General Assembly was reluctant to impeach, and even if the Madigan Family lacked the votes to convict and further their political plans, what possible justification could there be for this court to usurp legislative prerogatives? There is none whatsoever.
THE PARTICIPANTS IN THIS PROCEEDING, BOTH IN FRONT OF THE COURT AND BEHIND THE CURTAIN, HAVE SELF-INTEREST, NOT THE PUBLIC INTEREST, AT THE CORE OF THEIR APPEARANCE BEFORE THIS TRIBUNAL
1. This proceeding turns on the interpretation of a simple, single word with a well-worn definition in common usage, “disability.” The AG has tried to stretch the term “disability” to make the word’s impact in the Illinois Constitution coextensive with the legislative procedure of impeachment. But it is clear that if this Court were to accept the AG’s interpretation of the term “disability,” impeachment would be rendered nugatory and a meaningless procedure under Illinois law. Why would the general Assembly impeach if the Court could simply remove with the stroke of a pen?
The AG relies on one dictionary for her definition of disability. The undersigned reached for the dictionary under his desk (Appendix pp. 1-2). In his dictionary “disability” is defined as either “the condition of being disabled,” or, more pertinently: “Law. A legal incapacity or disqualification.”
Nowhere does the definition of disability fit the AG’s tortured definition of covering conduct involving an arrest without indictment and conviction of a crime. The Illinois Constitution gave the General Assembly the power to define “disability”, Article V, § 6 (d), but the legislature has never done so, which is why both the AG and the undersigned rely on dictionaries.
But wait. The legislature has in fact defined disability in a different context, Appendix. § 15 ILCS 335/4A (Appendix pp. 19-20) where the term “disabled person” is defined. Since this is the only definition of the term “disabled,” and the term “disability” is coextensive with “disabled,” this Court should adopt the General Assembly’s definition of “disabled” and reject the AG’s.
2. Although the undersigned was the first to raise questions about the USA’s circus in arresting the Governor, he has been followed by others who have raised similar questions, see Appendix pp. 13-14. They also question the federal government’s behavior toward the Governor. Thus, the AG’s attempt to inflate and expand what is at the core a very deficient and defective series of federal criminal insinuations should cause this Court to pause and ask, why? The answer is, of course, self-interest and conflict of interest on the part of the AG and her father. In Illinois there is never any other explanation.
3. The Fifth Amendment to the U. S Constitution requires a grand jury indictment before a defendant faces criminal charges (except for misdemeanors). As of the writing of this petition, there has been no indictment, only an arrest. A mere arrest does not even come close to being clothed with legitimacy sufficient to remove an elected public official. Sp why is the AG using such a fallacious claim to seek the Governor’s removal? That is an obvious “asked and answered” question, see above. The AG and her father lack the votes to proceed through the democratic process, so they are asking this court to rule by judicial fiat.
4. Although the AG claims she is acting in a “public” capacity, she is motivated solely by the apparent political interests of her father and herself. Her interest in advancing to the Governor’s office is well-known. It appears that an elaborate scheme has been created to (i) protect Barack Obama from the embarrassment of having to disclose and detail his contacts with the Governor; (ii) to allow the Madigan family to realize their dreams of controlling both the legislative and executive branches of Illinois government simultaneously. Their only request is that the justices of this court approve their de facto coup against democratic processes. For shame.
The media have created a lynch mob atmosphere, with inflammatory editorials calling for the removal of the Governor. Removal for what? On the basis of edited phone calls, no doubt taken out of context, and before the Governor is even charged with a crime? The efforts of self-interested politicians such as the AG to use her current office to create public panic and hysteria, and to profit thereby with her own political advancement, should stop at the doors of this Court.
For the foregoing reasons, this Court should summarily dismiss the AG’s petitions and proceedings and direct that any further activity proceed pursuant to the Illinois Constitution’s procedures for impeachment.
The undersigned would also appreciate it if the Court granted him leave to appear and be heard in this matter.
Once the Court rules that due process applies to the bizarre activity involving the Governor, the AG’s plan to seize power by judicial fiat will collapse of its own weight.
In forty years of fighting corruption in this state the undersigned has never seen a more brazen political scheme to use and abuse the judiciary for personal political benefit than the documents submitted in this proceeding by the AG.