@ParryPierce Just to be clear: Dershowitz’s position (so far as it can made out) is absurd--and will prove to be yet another embarrassment to Harvard Law (along with the likes of Josh Hawley, Ted Cruz, and Kayleigh McEnany). 2/19
@ParryPierce First of all, there is absolutely no evidence that the attorney-client privilege was violated in this case, because of the well-known and well-tested crime-fraud exception to that privilege. 3/19
@ParryPierce This is especially important here, because the attorney-client privilege was, it appears, annulled in this search warrant decision, meaning that Trump is quite possibly in trouble. 4/19
@ParryPierce Dershowitz has claimed that sudden search and seizure operations are only justified when there is reason to believe that relevant evidence in the investigation will be destroyed or hidden. Really? 5/19
@ParryPierce Is Dershowitz suggesting that prosecutors should have to notify the individual of the evidence they think he has, and then request him to turn that evidence over? 6/19
@ParryPierce But why should the burden of proof be on prosecutors to show that the individual WON’T destroy or hide evidence--especially because advance notification and requests would tell the individual that he is under investigation? 7/19
@ParryPierce Nor should prosecutors be expected to identify and specify all the evidence they are interested in--nor, for that matter, is that the way search warrants do in fact work. 8/19
@ParryPierce One of the purposes of a valid search warrant is to ferret out possible evidence relevant to the investigation that prosecutors have reason to believe may exist but have not yet identified, 9/19
@ParryPierce and this is perfectly legal, provided that all the evidence involves a party that the prosecutors *and the court* believe *may* be a party to a crime, an accessory to a crime, or involved in a conspiracy to commit a crime. 10/19
@ParryPierce Which is why a number of legal commentators have been saying that Trump and many of his supporters have plenty of reason to be worried by the search and seizure of belongings in Giuliani’s apartment and office. 11/19
@ParryPierce Here the criminal investigation appears to concern, at least in large part, whether a crime was committed when Marie Yovanovitch lost her job and was summarily reassigned from her ambassadorship in Ukraine. 12/19
@ParryPierce This was one of the crucial points in Trump’s impeachment trial, where he was accused of abuse of power.

Dershowitz famously defended Trump against the impeachment charge, 13/19
@ParryPierce arguing (absurdly enough) that Trump as POTUS could sell or give away the state of Alaska to Russia without committing an impeachable offense. 14/19
@ParryPierce Now that Trump is out of office and a private citizen, however, the feds seem to be investigating whether Giuliani--and yes, probably Trump as well--committed one or more *crimes* when they pressured Zelensky to find dirt on the Bidens. 15/19
@ParryPierce There is a well-known principle in the law, according to which “tainted evidence”--that is, information in a criminal trial that has been obtained by illegal means or has been traced through evidence obtained by illegal search and/or seizure, Is not admissible in court. 16/19
@ParryPierce (This is often referred to as the “fruit of the poisonous tree" doctrine.) Dershowitz seems to foresee a trial in which the defendant(s) might hope to escape conviction by somehow invoking this principle. 17/19
@ParryPierce As a number of legal commentators have already pointed out, this effort won’t succeed in court. Nevertheless, there is a real *political* concern that Dershowtiz’s claim will work wonders with the MAGA cult, 18/19
@ParryPierce which is prepared to believe and endorse nonsense exactly like this if they want to believe it. Expect most of the talking heads on Fox News to run with it as well.

CAVEAT: Kindly note that I am not a lawyer. 19/19

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More from @twoodiac

2 May
Washington Post, New York Times, NBC retract reports that said Giuliani was warned by FBI he was target of Russian disinformation operation - CNN cnn.com/2021/05/01/med…
While it’s crucial that the media get the story right, so far as Giuliani is concerned this isn’t a big deal. This couldn’t have come much of a surprise: there have been rumors for months that he has been under investigation by the feds. 1/3
And SDNY probably had the goods on Rudy already. But what Michael Cohen and others are pointing out now is that *Trump* and his allies have to be worried about communications Giuliani had with *them*. 2/3
Read 4 tweets
14 Feb
McConnell is getting high marks for his speech, even from some Ds. He does deserve credit for torching Trump for his conduct. Even so, his main argument--that the Senate properly acquitted b/c only a sitting officer can be convicted--is disgraceful. 1/22 tinyurl.com/yxzedgcr
McConnell’s argument is based on the entirely erroneous and unsubstantiated allegation that the Constitution considers only two possible kinds of individuals: (1) private citizens, and (2) a POTUS, VPOTUS, or government official currently in office. 2/22
This is nonsense. There are THREE types of individuals to consider under the Constitution: the two kinds McConnell mentions, and *a person who is a private individual NOW who WAS an officer and who engaged in impeachable conduct when he or she WAS in office*! 3/22
Read 25 tweets
9 Feb
The Constitution clearly provides for the Senate to either: (1) acquit; (2) convict, remove, not disqualify; (3) convict, remove, disqualify; or (4) convict and disqualify if no longer in office. What we’re looking at, beginning tomorrow, is (4). 1/5
Senate Republicans can’t argue that disqualification is out of order because 74 million deluded and dangerous Americans voted for Trump in the last election. 2/5
Like, you know, it’s not as though the drafters of the Constitution didn’t consider the possibility that a convicted president might be popular and constitute a significant threat in the future. 3/5
Read 6 tweets
7 Feb
Section 320 of the Communications Decency Act provides in part that "no provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider." 1/11
Congressional Ds are now proposing to significantly amend Section 230.

It is easy to see why Sen. Warner’s proposed amendment is an existential threat to two major destructive forces in American cultural and political life: Facebook and MAGA. tinyurl.com/y57y9b4v 2/11
Consider the lawsuit against Fox News, which led to Lou Dobbs's termination there.

Among other things, the amendment would put FB and other social media companies in the same legal posture as Fox News in defamation lawsuits. They would no longer have any special protection. 3/11
Read 12 tweets
7 Feb
Trump’s approval rating is now around 34% (latest Gallup poll), and 63% of voters disapprove of him. And only 40% of Rs want him to run again in 2024.

But the remaining 60% is obdurate, and isn’t going away. As I see it, this is an insoluble problem for the GQP. 1/6
The GQP leadership might be thinking that the voting intensity of the MAGA right is greater than the voting intensity of non- and even anti-MAGA voters, so the party can win by presenting two quite different faces to the world, 2/6 tinyurl.com/y3xfna3e
but voters understand that one faction in a party is going to prevail over the other eventually, and it is clear now that the winning faction on the right is going to be the MAGA crazies. 3/6
Read 7 tweets
6 Feb
A run down of MTGreene’s record of anti-Semitism. It’s quite vile. Since she’s a white Christian nationalist, like much--even most--of Trump’s MAGA base, Greene’s anti-Semitism came w the territory, but it’s sobering to see this collation. tinyurl.com/y4rc7qyn
It seems that MAGAts can tolerate any amount of cognitive dissonance. They don’t object to Jews like Jared Kushner, for example. But that can be explained by their Dispensationalism and Christian Zionism, and there is plenty of anti-Semitism in those groups too. 2/3
Read 4 tweets

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