KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Kansas Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly in a new TV ad released Wednesday responded to weeks of attacks from state Attorney General Derek Schmidt over her vetoes of bans on transgender athletes competing in girls and women’s sports. “You may have seen my opponent’s attacks, so let me just say it: of course men should not play girls’ sports. OK, we all agree there,” Kelly says in the ad, before pivoting to attack Schmidt on education and linking him to former Gov. Sam Brownback. But there was far less agreement about what Kelly meant. The ad quickly became a kind of Rorschach test...
Stories Chosen For You
Gov. Ron DeSantis will resist testifying in Andrew Warren’s legal challenge to the governor’s order suspending him as the elected state attorney for Hillsborough County, according to a pretrial report issued in the case.
U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle released the report, a summary of where the case stands, on Tuesday. It sets deadlines for filing motions and completing depositions in the lawsuit but Hinkle hasn’t yet set a trial date.
Warren wants trial to begin on Oct. 24; lawyers in Attorney General Ashley Moody’s office, representing DeSantis, want a Dec. 5 trial date.
“Plaintiff expects to depose defendant,” Hinkle wrote, referring to the governor.
However, the governor’s team plans to resist hauling DeSantis in for any depositions, the judge noted, invoking executive privilege and the “apex doctrine.”
That allows courts to block deposition of corporate executives or government officials to shield them from harassment intended to force a settlement, according to an American Bar Association analysis.
The doctrine is available if the party opposing a deposition can show that “the witness lacks unique, first-hand knowledge of the facts at issue” and “less intrusive means of discovery have not been exhausted.”
“As a consequence, most courts require the deposition of lower-ranking employees before permitting the deposition of an executive-level employee to proceed,” the analysis says.
Warren challenged his suspension in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida, claiming it amounted to a purge over political differences in violation of the First Amendment and Florida Constitution. Hinkle rejected his request for reinstatement but also the state’s request to dismiss the case.
DeSantis claimed Warren was neglecting his duty to enforce the law, based largely on being a signatory to letters by progressive prosecutors nationally opposing bringing cases for violation of bans on abortion or transgender care.
Discovery is a legal process by which litigants share evidence to which the opposing party is entitled. In this case, Warren’s lawyers want to include public statements DeSantis made about Warren’s suspension, including during an Aug. 4 news conference in which the governor was backed by a phalanx of uniformed sheriffs from the Tampa Bay area.
DeSantis’ legal team want to delve more deeply into how Warren developed those policy positions.
Regarding the trial date, “Defendant’s position is that a significant amount of discovery must be conducted in a short time frame, even under pared-down discovery procedures,” Hinkle noted.
“Additionally, the state is under a state of emergency, with Hurricane Ian forecast to make landfall in Florida … This impacts the availability of defendant and defendant’s staff and counsel in the near term and after the storm has passed and complicates their ability to respond to anticipated discovery requests and to prepare for trial on expedited timelines. Given these issues, a December trial date is still ambitious but would permit the parties to prepare the matter for trial in a more orderly fashion.”
Florida Phoenix is part of States Newsroom, a network of news bureaus supported by grants and a coalition of donors as a 501c(3) public charity. Florida Phoenix maintains editorial independence. Contact Editor Diane Rado for questions: email@example.com. Follow Florida Phoenix on Facebook and Twitter.
Prosecutors released new body camera video showing a mob of Donald Trump supporters using a campaign banner to attack police officers at the U.S. Capitol.
The video was released as part of the sentencing of 72-year-old Howard Richardson, a Pennsylvania man who got 46 months in prison Aug. 26 for attacking law enforcement officers with a Trump flag and joining a mob that used a large Trump banner as a battering ram during the Jan. 6 attack, reported NBC News.
“Richardson also wrongly insisted that he carried a ‘Back the Blue’ flag on January 6 and not a Trump flag,” prosecutors said. “Apparently [unfazed] by the irony of using a pro-police symbol to attack a police officer, Richardson made this assertion even though the video footage clearly shows his flag is a blue and red ‘Trump’ flag.”
IN OTHER NEWS: Is a major bombshell coming? It sure looks like it
The newly released video shows Richardson and other rioters lift a massive banner supported by metal poles over a group of police officers guarding the barrier to the Capitol, forcing them to abandon their defensive posture to prevent the heavy structure from crushing them -- allowing the rioters to storm the barricade.
“Mr. Richardson was front and center," prosecutors said.
In April, when several of the text messages from Mark Meadows were revealed, Fox News host Sean Hannity was exposed for working directly with Donald Trump's team to help craft an interview to make the president look good. He was also telling Meadows that Fox News could be a safe home for him after the administration inevitably ended.
Former Rep. Denver Riggleman (R-VA) included a new Hannity text message in his book, The Breach, that discussed starting up businesses with Rudy Giuliani.
The discussion started in a Nov. 29 text, when Hannity vented about the astronomical numbers that Joe Biden was able to garner. He simply couldn't believe that so many Americans would vote against Donald Trump.
“I’ve had my team digging into the numbers. There is no way Biden got these numbers. Just mathematically impossible. It’s so sad for this country they can pull this off in 2020. We need a major breakthrough, a video, something,” Hannity wrote, citing a report from the right-wing site, The Federalist.
IN OTHER NEWS: Is a major bombshell coming? It sure looks like it
“You’re exactly right. Working on breakthrough,” Meadows replied.
On Dec. 6, Meadows texted Hannity to complain about Fox colleagues like Chris Wallace, who had corrected the Trump administration after they refused to call Biden "President-Elect."
“Doing this to try and get ratings will not work in the long run,” Meadows wrote.
"Hannity had been pressing colleagues to toe the delusional Trump election line," Riggleman explained.
“I’ve been at war with them all week. We will talk wen I see u,” Hannity replied. He went on to say if Trump was kicked out of office he had ideas for Meadows.
"He wanted them to team up against Biden and to get into business together—and possibly with Rudy Giuliani," said Riggleman.
“If this doesn’t end the way we want, you me and Jay are doing 3 things together. 1- Directing legal strategies vs Biden 2- NC Real estate 3- Other business I talked to Rudy. Thx for helping him,” Hannity wrote.
Meadows didn't respond.
Raw Story is continuing to bring coverage of Riggleman's book here.