Civil Discourse Now

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Separating the "pro" from the "bono": a case of deja vu all over again

If you crib someone else’s work, check for errors in names spelled. But in regard to suits that seek Trump removal, bottom-line is the more, the merrier.
The Supreme Court of the United States (“SCOTUS”) has docketed Shane, et al v U.S., et al, 17-857, a Petition for Writ of Mandamus (“Mandamus Petition”) and appointment of Special Master. Voters from “swing States” seek to nullify the results of the 2016 election.
Sound familiar?
January: three women, in Blumstein, dkt 16-907, filed a Mandamus Petition at SCOTUS based on Article IV, sec 4, of the Constitution and alleged Russia cyber-invaded the U.S. and our 2016 elections. Half-way through I came onto the case and sought appointment of a special master. May: 12 voters filed a Mandamus Petition and sought Appointment of a Special Master in Bailey, dkt 16-1464, which cited Art. IV, sec. 4 plus equitable jurisdiction of the Court as means to nullify, plus fraud on the American people as one of the grounds.
Dec 15: Mandamus Petition that also seeks appointment of a special master was filed w/SCOTUS in Shane, dkt 17-857 and seeks to nullify w/McConnell as a new respondent. Most of the Shane petition is the same as Blumstein and Bailey.
Documents filed with courts are not copyrighted, but are public domain. I am flattered someone cribbed our work. HOWEVER, several necessary points:
1) Blumstein and Bailey, based on similar grounds, were dismissed by SCOTUS. We shall soon file an action with a U.S. District Court, as one learns from prior efforts. (The early bird might get the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.)
2) The Shane website stresses its lawyers are pro bono and (impliedly) above
financial demands. POINT: the Shane organizer wanted a re-written petition from me last summer. I obliged. The petition in Blumstein was a pro se effort of women who are not lawyers. A Massachusetts lawyer had the Special Master idea. The bulk of the rest of the work was my research and writing. The Shane lawyers do not have to charge to write the Petition. The writing was done. (And on what we shall file in District Court I corrected the spelling of “Donohue.”)
For the Shane website to imply the Shane lawyers are above mundane financial considerations is more than a little disingenuous. If the website had proclaimed different lawyers, who felt they had a better chance, had filed our work, I would admire their candor. This is a distraction. We are up against major forces and we require resources to battle them.
To paraphrase President Andrew Shepherd, serious times call for serious people. I wish folks in Shane luck. Also, as they say, you get what you pay for. The lawyers in Shane took what my team paid for. If SCOTUS orders briefing and oral argument in Shane, I hope consideration is given to having someone lead who not only understands the mechanics of the arguments, but believes their efficacy.

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