A Colorado court ruled Wednesday that pro-Donald Trump lawyers not only lost their class-action lawsuit, but they are also now going to be sanctioned to pay for all of the legal fees for Facebook, Dominion Voting Systems, the states of Michigan, Pennsylvania, Georgia and Wisconsin, and the non-profit Center for Tech and Civic Life.
Speaking about the case on MSNBC, host Lawrence O'Donnell smirked as he explained how amazing the 68-page legal decision was written. O'Donnell particularly enjoyed the point at which the judge shamed the Trump-loving lawyers for claiming something was a "fact" because the former president tweeted it.
But as the legal experts explained, the reason these Trumpy lawyers, Gary D. Fielder and Ernest John Walker, are being forced to pay for the legal fees is due to a Republican-backed bill that was an attempt to end what they called "frivolous lawsuits."
The documentary "Hot Coffee" explores the story of a woman that got a cup of coffee at McDonald's that was so hot that when it spilled on her she sustained third-degree burns that sent her to the hospital. The woman sued the company for millions, which became the story for pro-corporate Republicans who mocked her injuries. The woman never got the millions she requested, but the company was required to pay for her medical bills and other related fees.
There's a political issue in cases like this as well. Corporations tend to support Republicans and trial lawyers, who bring cases against corporations for wrongdoing, tend to give money to Democrats.
"Yet powerful special interests are determined to diminish the rights of individual citizens and the access those citizens have to the court system. By promoting the myth of "frivolous lawsuits," they work to distort our civil justice system and intimidate individuals from exercising their constitutional rights and seeking justice when they are injured or a loved one is killed due to negligence," the Illinois Trial Lawyers Association explained.
Many Republican-led states began passing laws against the s0called "frivolous lawsuits." What that looked like was that if any lawsuit is deemed "frivolous" by a judge, the defendant can petition the court to demand their legal fees be paid for by the petitioner.
What is happening now, however, is that Republicans are the ones behind such lawsuits. As O'Donnell explained, the right-wing lawyers who went after billions of dollars in "damages," now must pay a hefty sum of legal fees for massive corporations like Facebook, as well as states involved in the lawsuits.
A similar case was brought by Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) who sued two Twitter accounts that mocked him on the platform. One of the accounts purports to be a cow that belongs to the Nunes family dairy. Nunes is now suing NBC Universal for an MSNBC report from Rachel Maddow that is causing him to suffer "insult, pain, embarrassment, humiliation, mental suffering and injury to his reputation." Despite Nunes living in California and working in Washington, D.C. and Maddow's show being done out of NBC's New York offices, it's being tried in the U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of Texas.
Virginia, however, doesn't have the kind of laws that Colorado does. But since the Nunes lawsuit, Democrats in the state are pushing an anti-SLAPP law. SLAPP stands for "strategic lawsuits against public participation." They're essentially laws that would protect news organizations, bloggers, and even fake Twitter cows, from being targeted by a thin-skinned California Congressman.
Watch the full discussion from legal experts below:
Stupid stupid Trumpy lawyers www.youtube.com
Evangelical preacher Rev. Wade Morris died from COVID-19 this week after speaking at an Oklahoma Christian camp where an outbreak of the deadly virus has occurred.
The traveling preacher was a marathon runner but was still taken down by the virus.
"I think Wade himself, he knew the risk of going towards Falls Creek when he, when COVID was here, and he chose to go out there and fulfill what God told him to do," camp attendee Joshua Morris told KFOR. He was there when Rev. Morris was and he and his family contracted COVID as well. "I knew the danger of it, but I wasn't really worried about it because we're going to worship God and praise him."
Oklahoma is experiencing a startling increase in COVID cases similar to what it experienced during the worst of the pandemic. In just 24 hours, Oklahoma had 2,000 new COVID cases. The day prior had 1,600 new cases. It's an increase of 5,597 cases since Friday, July 30.
Speaking to KWTV, teenage camper, Braeden Morris said, "I was very happy for him because, not only did he die doing what God called him to do—preaching at Falls Creek, that's what God called him to do—but he's with Jesus now."
"I wish we could have avoided all getting COVID, and I'm very sad about Wade passing. But the thing I remember from Wade, is that he was more concerned about God's kingdom than where we are here on Earth," Braeden said.
"We've seen the number of new cases a day in Oklahoma double in the past 10 days; more than 1,600 cases a day right now and hospitalizations have gone up considerably also; 739 people in the hospital as of yesterday. We have some real concerns right now," Dr. Dale Bratzler, OU's Chief COVID officer, told KTAB News on Tuesday.
White evangelicals like the ones at Falls Creek are among the top groups resisting the COVID-19 vaccine. As the Wall Street Journal reported last month, COVID isn't a unique vaccine problem for them.
"White evangelicals have a history of vaccine resistance: A 2017 survey by the Pew Research Center found that 22 percent of white evangelicals opposed mandatory measles, mumps and rubella vaccinations for children to attend school, higher than for other major religious demographics," said the report.
While television evangelicals, like Franklin Graham, are advocating for the vaccine, others are afraid to, concerned that it will decrease their church attendance and the money they pull in from church members, said the Journal.
"It's instead about the mistrust and distrust that's evident in American society right now," Rev. Russell Moore told PBS in an April interview. "And, plus, I think some of it has to do with the fact that we have been isolated from one another in lots of ways for over a year. And much of the way that misinformation and disinformation gets combated is with people in conversation with one another."
"And that's why lots of us are doing what we can to say, vaccination is not only something that's acceptable for Christians; it's something we ought to thank God that we have the technology for, because it's going to get us back to doing the things that we need to do quicker," he also said.
Oklahoma GOP chair 'triples down' claims that vaccine passports will lead to Nazi 'gas chambers': report
Earlier this week, Oklahoma Republican Party chair John Bennett remained defiant and refused to apologize as Republican officials blasted him for comparing vaccine passports to Nazi yellow star patches, and suggesting they would lead to "gas chambers."
On Wednesday, News9 reported that Bennett is still defending his remarks. Bennett released a pre-recorded video urging the GOP to "take the gloves off," and warning "we will take our cities, our counties, and this state back."
As the report noted, however, the idea of taking Oklahoma back doesn't make much sense, since "in Oklahoma, all 77 counties twice voted for Donald Trump, Republicans have supermajorities in the House and Senate, all seven members of Congress are Republicans and both major cities are led by Republican mayors."
According to the the report, several prominent Oklahoma GOP officials are condemning Bennett's remarks. Gov. Kevin Stitt, Sens. Jim Inhofe and James Lankford, Rep. Markwayne Mullin, and the leaders of both chambers of the Oklahoma legislature signed onto a statement calling vaccine/Holocaust comparisons "irresponsible and wrong," and adding, "People should have the liberty to choose if they take the vaccine, but we should never compare the unvaccinated to the victims of the Holocaust."
Bennett has a history of incendiary remarks. He has repeatedly attacked Muslims, claiming Christians who live around them should be "wary" of being beheaded and forcing Muslims who want to meet with him to fill out a questionnaire asking whether they beat their wives.
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