Friday, January 12, 2018

Cliven Bundy Case Dismissed, Now Let's Sue Regarding Lavoy Finicum

By Douglas V. Gibbs
Author, Speaker, Instructor, Radio Host

The Bureau of Land Management has unconstitutionally maintained lands that were never purchased by the federal government from States with State Legislature consent for the purpose of needful buildings (the requirements laid out in Article I, Section 8 of the United States Constitution for the federal government to own land inside States).  Cliven Bundy knew this. Knows this.  So, he bucked the system.  After an armed confrontation between federal agents and a gathering of American Patriots, and a later showdown in Oregon that led to the execution of Lavoy Finicum, the Cliven Bundy case has been dismissed.

It's amazing what a change in President of the United States can bring.

The Federal Government does not legally own the land in question.  Most of the land west of the Mississippi River was gained by the federal government in an unconstitutional manner.  The law of the land has been disregarded by the federal government, and the prosecutors continued the tyranny of unconstitutionality when they also withheld vital evidence during the case.  The judge recognized the holes, however, and rightfully dismissed the case against the Nevada rancher, Cliven Bundy, and his sons.

The case in question was heard by a federal judge in Las Vegas.  The event in question began four years ago when Cliven Bundy, recognizing that the federal government's hold of the lands in question was unconstitutional, refused to pay federal grazing fees.  He proclaimed his family had been there longer than the federal government, and that the lands constitutionally belong to the State of Nevada.

Government agents, under the direction of the Obama administration, swarmed in, as did patriots from around the country in support of Cliven Bundy's defiance.  An armed standoff outside Bundy's Nevada ranch ensued.  The Bundys dared the federal government to arrest them, well knowing that they had the U.S. Constitution, and American Patriots, on their side.  Obama's federal government took the dare, and arrested him, charging Bundy and his sons with a range of felonies.  Now, after two years of taxpayer money being poured into a case that should never have happened, a federal judge has set them free.

During the latest chapter of the Bundy story, it was apparent that the Bundy family still has the overwhelming support of patriots.,  Over 100 of them crammed into the courtroom.  Images of the American Flag on shirts, pocket constitutions in shirt pockets, and cowboy boots and hats were the norm.  Cliven Bundy wore no American Flag on his shirt.  He had no pocket constitution on him.  His feet were not adorned with cowboy boots.  Bundy, 71, sat quietly in a jailhouse jumpsuit.

Cliven Bundy's son, Ryan, led a large group of supporters in prayer before entering the courtroom.  With his cowboy hat on the bench beside him, he awaited the judge's decision.

Judge Gloria Navarro was appointed by President Barack Obama in 2010, and confirmed unanimously with a 98-0 vote.  Born in Las Vegas, she's familiar with life in Nevada, and the case.  In 2017 she was the judge who presided over all of the other cases, also issuing a mistrial when the jury was deadlocked last April.  Now, in 2018, she rebuked federal prosecutors — using the words “flagrant” and “reckless” to describe how they withheld evidence from the defense — before saying “that the universal sense of justice has been violated” and dismissing the charges — dismissing the charges for all four defendants "with prejudice," which means they cannot be tried again for the same charges.

Tears and cheers.

The charges of threatening a federal officer, carrying and using a firearm, and engaging in conspiracy are gone.  The chapter in American History about a face-off with the federal government by a Nevada Rancher has been closed for the moment with a point awarded to We the People.  It was a mistrial.  But, it may not be over, just yet.  I never underestimate the determination of tyranny.

Cliven Bundy emerged in jeans, a button-down shirt, and gray blazer.

“I’m not used to being free, put it that way,” he said. “I’ve been a political prisoner for right at 700 days today. I come into this courtroom an innocent man and I’m going to leave as an innocent man.”

He will likely continue his fight.  He has emerged as a leader regarding the issue of local control of federal land. It’s a decades-long fight for Bundy, who first tussled with the Bureau of Land Management in the 1990s by refusing to pay grazing fees for his cattle using federal land.

In the rain, moments later, someone stuck a “Not Guilty” sticker to his lapel. The rancher removed his hat and waved it to the crowd before posing for pictures.

“My defense is a 15-second defense: I graze my cattle only on Clark County, Nevada land and I have no contract with the federal government,” he said. “This court has no jurisdiction or authority over this matter. And I’ve put up with this court in America as a political prisoner for two years.”

U.S. Attorney Dayle Elieson of Nevada, who was appointed by Attorney General Jeff Sessions last week, said, “We respect the court’s ruling and will make a determination about the next appropriate steps.”

Is this a sign of things to come?  After Barack Obama increased federal control over Western Lands, and declared more national monuments, will it be the Trump administration's legacy to turn things around and push in the opposite direction, releasing federal control over lands that rightfully belong to the States?

“Most of Trump’s base are Bundy supporters,” Ian Bartrum, a constitutional law professor at the University of Nevada at Las Vegas said in an email. “This plays right into the larger Trump narrative about the Swamp versus the People. I think you might be right to say they aren’t that unhappy … and will likely make some political hay out of it.”

Now it's time to address the standoff last year on an Oregon wildlife preserve, where Lavoy Finicum was murdered in cold blood by federal agents.  If Trump believes in justice, and the Constitution, Lavoy Finicum's death will be avenged in the courtroom.  His killers must be brought to justice.

Congressman Rob Bishop (R-Utah) oversees the Bureau of Land Management (BLM).  As a part of the new government under President Trump, he says the agency is partly to blame for the failure of the prosecution against Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy, recognizing major problems in the BLM’s enforcement programs that led to the Bundy mistrial, including withholding evidence.  He has called out the BLM as being to blame for prosecutorial misconduct in the Nevada case, and thanks to the dismissal of the case "with prejudice," prosecutors cannot easily bring the case back to court.

“The failures of the Bundy case and previous cases display serious misconduct by BLM law enforcement officials, and strongly suggest that there are systemic issues within BLM’s law enforcement operations,” Bishop and Rep. Bruce Westerman (R-Ark.) wrote in a letter to BLM Acting Director Brian Steed.

“Previous Department of the Interior Office of the Inspector General reports, as well as whistleblower accounts, detail a litany of law enforcement problems from poor evidence handling procedures to a lack of professionalism, and even the deliberate withholding of information from Congress.”

Bishop and Westerman linked the case to the high-profile death of Kate Steinle, whose killing in San Francisco by an immigrant in the U.S. illegally fueled anger against so-called sanctuary cities that don’t hold such immigrants in custody for federal officials to deport.

Jose Ines Garcia Zarate, a Mexican national accused but ultimately acquitted in Steinle’s death, stole the gun in the case from a BLM officer.

“Rather than facing disciplinary action, the BLM officer whose gun was stolen was promoted to a supervisory role,” Bishop and Westerman said.

Under President Trump, and a continued reign by Republicans in Congress (if they survive the 2018 mid-term), I have a feeling we will see a tightening up of these departments - such is the advantage of having a patriot who is a businessman, rather than a Marxist community organizer, in the White House.

-- Political Pistachio Conservative News and Commentary

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