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 BlogviewAndrew Napolitano Archive

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This is a tale of FBI power misused and presidential trust misplaced. Last week, retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, President Donald Trump's confidant on matters pertaining to national security from June 2015 to February 2017 and his short-lived national security adviser in the White House, pleaded guilty in federal court in Washington, D.C., to a... Read More
In August, when President Donald Trump's lawyers persuaded him to refrain from attacking independent counsel Robert Mueller publicly -- he had many times called Mueller's investigation a "witch hunt" -- they also told him that the investigation was not aimed at him and not to worry because it would be over by Thanksgiving. These are... Read More
Should the government borrow against the future? Should it guarantee higher taxes for your children and grandchildren in return for lower taxes for you? If government's moral legitimacy depends on the consent of the governed, as Thomas Jefferson argued in the Declaration of Independence, can the federal government morally compel those who haven't consented to... Read More
What if the government doesn't really deliver for us? What if its failures to protect our lives, liberties and property are glaring? What if nothing changes after these failures? What if the National Security Agency -- the federal government's domestic spying apparatus -- has convinced Congress that it needs to cut constitutional corners in order... Read More
Earlier this week, the government revealed that a grand jury sitting in Washington, D.C., indicted a former Trump presidential campaign chairman and his former deputy and business partner for numerous felonies. Both were accused of working as foreign agents and failing to report that status to the federal government, using shell corporations to launder income... Read More
I am in Switzerland this week interacting with and lecturing to students and faculty at the University of Zurich. The subject of our work is the U.S. Constitution and its protections of personal liberty. In most countries, government has begrudgingly granted snippets of personal liberty to keep those who are demanding it at bay. Throughout... Read More
Late last week, President Donald Trump signed an executive order directing the secretaries of the treasury and health and human services to cease making payments to health care insurance companies in behalf of the more than 6 million Americans who qualify for these payments under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, commonly known as... Read More
Sometimes the public expression of unwanted ideas reaches directly into our living rooms. When President Donald Trump attacked a half-dozen or so professional football players who, instead of standing during the traditional playing of the national anthem prior to football games, "took a knee" by kneeling on one or both of their knees during the... Read More
Here we go again. The United States has been rattled to the core by an unspeakable act of evil perpetrated by a hater of humanity. A quiet, wealthy loner rented a hotel suite in Las Vegas, armed it with shooting platforms and automatic weapons, knocked out two of the windows, and shot at innocents 32... Read More
The weird odyssey of President Donald Trump's travel bans continues. The original ban, signed as an executive order Jan. 27, barred absolutely all immigrants and refugees from seven predominantly Muslim countries. The countries had actually been chosen by the State Department of former President Barack Obama. Obama never signed a ban, but Trump did. The... Read More
The Donald Trump I know is a smart guy who often thinks a few steps ahead of those whose will he is trying to bend. But I lately wonder whether he grasps the gravity of the legal peril that is beginning to show up around him. In the past week, we learned of an unfiltered... Read More
Like many Americans during the past three weeks, I've been bombarded by news about the destructive power of Hurricane Harvey in Texas and Hurricane Irma in Florida. The stories are of misery, death and destruction. The misery, death and destruction are acutely difficult to accept because they have been visited upon innocents. I say that... Read More
Earlier this week, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced that in six months, the Department of Justice will begin the long process for deportation proceedings against 800,000 young people who came to America as babies and young children in the care of their parents and others because those entries into this country were and remain unlawful.... Read More
Amid the bad news this summer of racial tensions in Charlottesville and biblical-like floods in Houston and preening saber rattling between Pyongyang and Washington, a dangerous below-the-radar trend has been developing about which all who believe that the Constitution means what it says should be concerned. It is the reckless influence upon local law enforcement... Read More
On the heels of his worst week in office, during which his crude comments about race were widely perceived as defending racism and hatred -- comments that sent some of his natural domestic allies fleeing -- President Donald Trump could not bring himself to articulate a mea culpa. Instead, he purported to defend as "some... Read More
Last weekend, serious violence broke out in Charlottesville, Virginia, when a group of white supremacist demonstrators was confronted by a group of folks who were there to condemn the message the demonstrators had come to advance. The message was critical of the government for removing a statue of Gen. Robert E. Lee from a public... Read More
Earlier this week, the Trump Department of Justice told the mayor of Chicago that it would cease funding grants to the Chicago Police Department that had been approved in the Obama administration because Chicago city officials were not cooperating with federal immigration officials. The DOJ contended that Chicago officials were contributing to lawlessness by refusing... Read More
What if the federal government captures in real time the contents of every telephone call, email and text message and all the fiber-optic data generated by every person and entity in the United States 24/7/365? What if this mass surveillance was never authorized by any federal law? What if this mass surveillance has come about... Read More
During the past two weeks, President Donald Trump has made no secret of his unhappiness at the management of the Department of Justice under Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Actually, Trump seems most agitated at the growing parts of the DOJ that are not under Sessions' management. He is also angry that the trail of the... Read More
Last week, The New York Times revealed that in June 2016, Donald Trump Jr., the president's eldest son; Jared Kushner, the president's son-in-law and chief confidant; Paul Manafort, Trump's then-campaign chief executive; and others met secretly at Trump Tower with a former Russian prosecutor and a former Soviet counterintelligence agent to discuss what negative (most... Read More
Earlier this week, after nearly uniform rejections by judges all across the country, President Donald Trump achieved a court victory in the persistent challenges to his most recent executive order restricting the immigration of people into the United States from six predominately Muslim countries. Lower federal courts had consistently ruled that the president's behavior was... Read More
I was surprised last weekend when one of President Donald Trump's lawyers told my colleague Chris Wallace twice on "Fox News Sunday" that the president is being investigated by the FBI and then told him twice that he is not. This same lawyer repeated the "not being investigated" argument on a half-dozen other Sunday shows... Read More
Last week, when former FBI Director James Comey gave his long-awaited public testimony about his apparently rough-and-tumble relationship with President Donald Trump, he painted a bleak picture. The essence of Comey's testimony was that the president asked him to drop an investigation of retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn -- Trump's former national security adviser --... Read More
Last weekend, the FBI arrested an employee of a corporation in Augusta, Georgia, that had a contract with the National Security Agency and charged her with espionage. Espionage occurs when someone who has been entrusted to safeguard state secrets fails to do so. In this case, the government alleges that the person to whom state... Read More
“The makers of our Constitution … conferred, as against the Government, the right to be let alone -- the most comprehensive of rights and the right most valued by civilized men.” -- Justice Louis D. Brandeis, 1928 After the Watergate era had ended and Jimmy Carter was in the White House and the Senate’s Church... Read More
The bad news for President Donald Trump keeps coming his way, notwithstanding a generally bravura performance on the foreign stage this past week in Riyadh, Jerusalem and Vatican City. Yet while he was overseas, his colleagues here in the United States have been advising him to hire criminal defense counsel, and he has apparently begun... Read More
In a period of seven days this month, President Donald Trump fired James Comey as director of the FBI and was accused of sharing top-secret intelligence data with the Russian foreign minister and the Russian ambassador to the United States, the latter a known Russian spy. The Comey firing was clumsy and rude. Comey learned... Read More
Last week, the U.S. House of Representatives crafted a partisan compromise bill that endorsed and reinforced the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare. This was done notwithstanding claims to the contrary by President Donald Trump and the House Republican leadership, who want us to believe that this bill, if it becomes law, will effectively repeal and... Read More
Late last week, President Donald Trump told CBS News that domestic surveillance of American citizens should the “No. 1” topic of inquiry until we can find out “what the hell is going on” with it. Also late last week, the National Security Agency -- the federal government’s 60,000-person-strong domestic spying agency -- announced that it... Read More
Last weekend, The New York Times published a long piece about the effect the FBI had on the outcome of the 2016 presidential campaign. As we all know, Donald Trump won a comfortable victory in the Electoral College while falling about 3 million votes behind Hillary Clinton in the popular vote. I believe that Clinton... Read More
What if our belief in self-government is a belief in a myth? What if the election of one political party over the other to control Congress changes only appearances? What if taxes stay high and regulations stay pervasive and the government stays oppressive and presidents fight wars no matter what the politicians promise and no... Read More
The issue of federal government surveillance of Americans has largely occupied Washington politicians and the media since President Donald Trump first accused the administration of his predecessor of spying on him while he and his colleagues worked at Trump Tower in New York City during the presidential election campaign and during the presidential transition. Trump's... Read More
The political fiasco that unfolded last week as President Donald Trump and the Republican House leadership failed to pass legislation repealing the Affordable Care Act, commonly called Obamacare, is attributable as much to the failure of politics as it is to the failure of politicians to understand the constitutional role of the federal government. Republicans... Read More
I have spent this past week watching the Senate Judiciary Committee interrogating U.S. Circuit Judge Neil Gorsuch. Judge Gorsuch is President Donald Trump's nominee to fill the vacancy on the U.S. Supreme Court. The vacancy was created by the death of Justice Antonin Scalia more than 13 months ago. The Supreme Court is currently generally... Read More
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The question of whether former President Barack Obama actually spied on President Donald Trump during the 2016 presidential campaign and transition has been tantalizing Washington since President Trump first made the allegation nearly two weeks ago. Since then, three investigations have been launched -- one by the FBI, one by the House of Representatives and... Read More
Those of us who believe that the Constitution means what it says have been arguing since the late 1970s that congressional efforts to strengthen national security by weakening personal liberty are unconstitutional, un-American and ineffective. The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which Congress passed in the aftermath of President Richard Nixon’s use of the CIA and... Read More
Last week, The Wall Street Journal revealed that members of the intelligence community -- part of the deep state, the unseen government within the government that does not change with elections -- now have acquired so much data on everyone in America that they can selectively reveal it to reward their friends and harm their... Read More
Over the past weekend, Trump administration officials offered harsh criticisms of the judicial interference with the enforcement of the president's immigration order. The Jan. 27 order suspended the immigration privileges of all refugees from Syria indefinitely and all immigrants from seven designated countries for 90 days. After a federal district judge in Seattle enjoined the... Read More
Last week, in a public courtroom in the federal courthouse in Seattle, the states of Washington and Minnesota -- after suing President Donald Trump, alleging injury caused by his executive order that suspended the immigration of all people from seven foreign countries -- asked a federal judge to compel the president and all those who... Read More
This past weekend, we all saw massive public outrage in major cities throughout the country. It was directed at the Jan. 27 issuance of an executive order, signed by President Donald Trump, addressing immigration. With the executive order, the president ordered the suspension of entry of all refugees to the United States for 120 days,... Read More
Within four hours of becoming president of the United States, Donald Trump signed an executive order intended to limit immediately the effects of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) in ways that are revolutionary. With the stroke of a pen, the president assaulted the heart of the law that was the domestic centerpiece... Read More
On Jan. 3, outgoing Attorney General Loretta Lynch secretly signed an order directing the National Security Agency -- America's 60,000-person-strong domestic spying apparatus -- to make available raw spying data to all other federal intelligence agencies, which then can pass it on to their counterparts in foreign countries and in the 50 states upon request.... Read More
The criminal investigation of Hillary Clinton is back front and center now that the FBI has released proof that her failure to safeguard state secrets caused the secrets to fall into the hands of foreign governments, some of which wish the United States ill. Even though the case against her -- which was closed and... Read More
Over the New Year's weekend, President Barack Obama's chief policy adviser and closest strategist, Valerie Jarrett, told a talk show host that her boss would have a happy legacy because there was an absence of scandal in his administration. When first I heard this preposterous claim, I thought I had misheard it. Yet it is... Read More
1) In 2017, President Donald Trump and the Republican-controlled Congress will a. repeal Obamacare entirely. b. squabble among themselves and make only cosmetic changes to Obamacare. c. retain the core of Obamacare because President Trump will have a change of heart. d. repeal Obamacare and replace it with a combined soft free market and soft... Read More
What if Christmas is a core value of belief in a personal God who lived among us and His freely given promise of eternal salvation that no believer should reject or apologize for? What if Christmas is the rebirth of Christ in the hearts of all believers? What if Christmas is the potential rebirth of... Read More
Earlier this week, leaders of the Democratic National Committee and former officials of Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign made the startling allegation that the Russian government hacked into Clinton’s colleagues’ email accounts to tilt the presidential election toward Donald Trump. They even pointed to statements made by CIA officials backing their allegations. President-elect Trump has characterized... Read More
Last week, President-elect Donald Trump re-emphasized the approach he will take in enforcing the nation's immigration laws, which is much different from the manner of enforcement utilized by President Barack Obama. The latter pointedly declined to deport the 5 million undocumented immigrants in the United States who are the parents of children born here --... Read More
"If there is any fixed star in our constitutional constellation, it is that no official, high or petty, can prescribe what shall be orthodox in politics, nationalism, religion or other matters of opinion." -- U.S. Supreme Court Justice Robert H. Jackson Is flag burning protected speech? This old issue returned front and center earlier this... Read More
What if on Thanksgiving Day there is more to be fearful about than there is to be thankful for? What if our political season from hell is not over but merely transformed? What if the election season through which we all just suffered is a portent of things to come? What if the election was... Read More
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Andrew Napolitano
About Andrew Napolitano

Judge Andrew P. Napolitano is a graduate of Princeton University and the University of Notre Dame Law School. He is the youngest life-tenured Superior Court judge in the history of the State of New Jersey. He sat on the bench from 1987 to 1995, when he presided over more than 150 jury trials and thousands of motions, sentencings, and hearings. Judge Napolitano taught constitutional law and jurisprudence at Delaware Law School for two years and at Seton Hall Law School for 11 years. He was often chosen by the students as their most outstanding professor. He returned to private practice in 1995, and began television work in the same year.

As Fox News’ Senior Judicial Analyst since 1998, Judge Napolitano broadcasts nationwide on the Fox News Channel throughout the day, Monday through Friday. He is nationally known for watching and reporting on the government as it takes liberty and property.

Judge Napolitano lectures nationally on the U.S. Constitution, the rule of law, civil liberties in wartime, and human freedom. He has been published in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Los Angeles Times, and numerous other publications. His weekly newspaper column is seen by millions every week.

The Judge is the author of seven books on the U.S. Constitution, two of which have been New York Times best sellers. His most recent book is Theodore and Woodrow: How Two American Presidents Destroyed Constitutional Freedom.


PastClassics
The unspoken statistical reality of urban crime over the last quarter century.
The “war hero” candidate buried information about POWs left behind in Vietnam.
The major media overlooked Communist spies and Madoff’s fraud. What are they missing today?
What Was John McCain's True Wartime Record in Vietnam?