Daily Archives: November 23, 2011

Bruce McCain: Kitzhaber’s Self Imposed Constitutional Crisis

On November 22, Governor John Kitzhaber issued what he described as a “temporary reprieve” halting the lawfully scheduled execution of two-time murderer Gary Haugen. The governor reminded Oregonians he acted pursuant to the authority granted to him under Article V, § 14, which provides, “He shall have power to grant reprieves, commutations, and pardons, after conviction, for all offences [sic] except treason, subject to such regulations as may be provided by law.” Thus Kitzhaber had three options available to him, each with a progressively more impactful effect. A reprieve is a postponing or cancellation of a punishment. A commutation replaces one sentence with another, lesser sentence. A pardon is an official act of forgiving a crime in which the conviction is eradicated from the records, the formerly convicted person is freed from further punishments and penalties, and may not be retried for the same offense. Fortunately, Kitzhaber did not commute or pardon Gary Haugen – yet.

There is no question the governor had the right and the authority to issue a reprieve in Haugen’s case. But Mr. Kitzhaber went much further by stating that no one would be executed in Oregon as long as he is governor. In so doing, he no longer acted as an executive considering a single case on its merits, but as a dictator who has unilaterally decided that Article 1, §40 of the Oregon constitution will not be in effect as long as he remains in power.
In 1984, Oregonians overwhelmingly reinstated the death penalty and enshrined it into the state’s constitution, where meddling legislators could not tamper with it. Article 1, §40 states, “Notwithstanding sections 15 and 16 of this Article, the penalty for aggravated murder as defined by law shall be death upon unanimous affirmative jury findings as provided by law and otherwise shall be life imprisonment with minimum sentence as provided by law.” In Haugen’s case, every legal step has been taken, including an Oregon Supreme Court upholding the legality of the death warrant that decreed Haugen be put to death on December 6. Yet at the last minute, the governor steps in and not only halts Haugen’s execution, but effectively suspends operation of a constitution he took an oath to uphold.
This was not a case in which a convicted death row inmate made a last gasp appeal for executive clemency. Haugen made no such appeal; instead Kitzhaber listened to and agreed with a coalition of death penalty opponents, including the Oregon ACLU and Amnesty International, who wrote to the governor on November 7 urging him to grant Haugen a reprieve and to go further and place a moratorium on all executions:
“We are asking that you grant an indefinite stay of Mr. Haugen’s execution until a comprehensive review has been conducted of Oregon’s death penalty system—a reviewdesigned to assess whether Oregon’s death penalty is working, as well as to identify problems and determine whether solutions exist. In other words, we are asking that you declare a de facto moratorium on executions in Oregon pending a comprehensive study of our death penalty system by a committee that you designate.”
Rather than uphold the Oregon constitution and the will of the people he was elected to serve, Oregon’s governor caved to the demands of the radical Left in one of the most disingenuous demonstrations of “courage” ever displayed by an elected executive. Kitzhaber is unapologetic in admitting he based his executive decision on his own personal opposition to capital punishment. Imagine the outrage if a pro-life governor decreed there would be no abortions performed in Oregon as long as he is in office, despite what the courts and constitution say.
Kitzhaber rails against the time and costs of Oregon’s lengthy appeal process – yet he allowed the very processes he criticizes to proceed, knowing he held the ace in the hole card. He allowed this case to proceed to the state supreme court, when he could have personally saved the parties and taxpayers the effort and costs by simply stepping in and saying, “Hey, everyone. Save your time and money. I’m not going to allow anyone to be executed, no matter what the constitution says or the judicial branch rules.”
The governor’s public statements explaining his decision used virtually every talking point contained in the November 7 letter from the ACLU and friends, including the use of a reprieve and declaration of “a de facto moratorium on executions in Oregon pending a comprehensive study of our death penalty system.”
Because the death penalty is in our constitution, neither the governor nor his progressive allies can change it without another vote of the people. However, rather than repeal Article 1, § 40 as the governor wants, there is another constitution amendment the people should consider: amending Article 5, § 14 to exclude aggravated murder from the reach of the governor’s personal political beliefs.

Bruce McCain is a local attorney and a former Captain with the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office. 

Tell ’em where you saw it. Http://www.victoriataft.com

Overcoming the Language Barrier

I can’t make out a word she says, but the gesture when the name Barack Obama is mentioned breaks all language barriers.

Video removed due to copyright complaint from REN-TV

According to the UK Telegraph, “The channel, which goes out to 120 million people across Russia, has declined to comment. But sources close to it have tried to defuse the row by claiming that the newsreader had believed she was off camera at the time and merely providing a voice-over for a report. According to the same storyline, the rude gesture was intended for studio technicians who had been trying to put her off her stride.”

Tell ’em where you saw it. Http://www.victoriataft.com

UPDATE!! Occupy Portland Now Seeks Credit for "Cleaning Up" Parks

** THE “CLEAN UP” (RAKING) HAS BEEN POSTPONED DUE TO MUD.

After leaving Lownsdale and Chapman Squares in a state that resembled toxic brown fields, Occupy Portland now wants credit for coming back and cleaning them up. How noble.

Moonscape

It appears the City will also give them their photo op. How insulting.

Through their new blog and twitter, Occupiers have been beseeched to come out and rake up some leaves. Leaves. I suppose with all the bluster going on–the weather, not the Occupiers this time–there may actually be a few leaves to rake.

One might wonder, what, with 48 hours’ notice, why the “99%ers” didn’t clean up before the cops shut them down on Sunday, November 13th, but apparently that didn’t come up.

 

Nice Tags, Occupiers!
Bottle of Urine

Occupiers left behind piles of clothes, tarps, bottles, pallets, filth, bottles of urine and piles of feces. In all, 70 dump trucks full of junk were carted off the premises. And do you know who I saw doing most of the work piling that stuff up on the day of the planned riot, I mean eviction? Cops. Earning overtime. Thirty City workers worked shifts on Sunday to clear out the rest of junk left behind by these ingrates. I hope they wore their John Kerry Bunny suits.

Piles of Junk

The shamelessness of these people knows no bounds. An effort to green wash their toxic flotsam and jetsam has begun.  Check out this post from their blog:

[O]n Wednesday, November 23, starting at 8:30 a.m., Parks and Recreation is sponsoring a volunteer cleanup. We can turn out in large numbers. It’s a chance to restore our parks and to build good will with the public by raking leaves and preparing the two parks for reseeding. We can put our bodies where our environmental principles are. [emphasis mine]

The City has spent upwards of a $1,000,000.00 —and climbing—in police overtime, the parks will cost as much as $100,000.00 to restore, if not more. Dump truck drivers with City pensions don’t come cheap. And undoubtedly, the green hats at the National Lawyers Guild will sue the City for every raised voice, boo boo and owie “suffered” by the Occupiers.

Worse, Mayor Sam Adams’ preferential treatment for this group also sets up the City for future lawsuits. If you haven’t read those posts of civil rights attorney, Rees Lloyd, and former law enforcement officer and attorney, Bruce McCain you can’t fully appreciate the lunkheadedness of the Portland City Council in their treatment of Occupy Portland.

Photo Credit: Oregonian

These noble Occupiers now want credit for “cleaning up” the parks. They spent five weeks lashing ropes around trees, planting non native species (bamboo) and violating the “rights” of trees by cutting their branches (please see Commissioner Dan Saltzman for information on how trees have “rights”). They’ve urinated, pooped, and concoted bomb making chemicals at these two parks. Which brings up the question: Where’s the EPA or Randy’s HIT Squad when you need them? I’m sure Randy Leonard would have sent his notorious code enforcement goon squad to shut down Occupy Portland, but he was too busy marching with them to notice the electrical theft and toxic-waste-dump-in-the-making. If Cindy’s XXX Book Store and the Greek Cuisina staged a march and invited Randy, maybe they’d be in business today.

Occupiers robbed the taxpayers and extorted the use of these parks from a bunch of useful idiots sitting on the Rainbow City Council. Those same useful idiots now give these Occupiers a photo op for their scrapbooks—and the media.

Monday via twitter, Occupiers were thrilled to report that Commissioner Nick Fish was reopening the parks to allow the Occupiers to clean them per their suggestion. Even Al Sharpton has more humility than these people. They helpfully linked to the City’s website which showed, yep, Lownsdale and Chapman Squares will be the subject of a volunteer effort today.  Strangely, that reference is now gone from the page. It might have something to do with the outrage felt by Portlanders who caught wind of this fraud on somebody’s radio talk show, I dunno.

Reference to Specific Parks Removed

After propping up this public tantrum as some sort of noble exercise, the City is in worse shape than before. The rule of law is in tatters because of the Mayor’s unequal treatment of this group due to his endorsement of the content of their message. Taxpayers are upset that they must shoulder the burden of paying the bills that weren’t necessary. The City is begging for donations–a huge one, $25,000.00 came in from Umpqua Bank yesterday–(ah, the irony!) to defray the cost of the clean up and CYA.

And now they prop them up again by giving these uncivil lawbreakers a photo op.

You just can’t make this stuff up.

Tell ’em where you saw it. Http://www.victoriataft.com

Bruce McCain: Kitzhaber’s Self Imposed Constitutional Crisis

On November 22, Governor John Kitzhaber issued what he described as a “temporary reprieve” halting the lawfully scheduled execution of two-time murderer Gary Haugen. The governor reminded Oregonians he acted pursuant to the authority granted to him under Article V, § 14, which provides, “He shall have power to grant reprieves, commutations, and pardons, after conviction, for all offences [sic] except treason, subject to such regulations as may be provided by law.” Thus Kitzhaber had three options available to him, each with a progressively more impactful effect. A reprieve is a postponing or cancellation of a punishment. A commutation replaces one sentence with another, lesser sentence. A pardon is an official act of forgiving a crime in which the conviction is eradicated from the records, the formerly convicted person is freed from further punishments and penalties, and may not be retried for the same offense. Fortunately, Kitzhaber did not commute or pardon Gary Haugen – yet.

There is no question the governor had the right and the authority to issue a reprieve in Haugen’s case. But Mr. Kitzhaber went much further by stating that no one would be executed in Oregon as long as he is governor. In so doing, he no longer acted as an executive considering a single case on its merits, but as a dictator who has unilaterally decided that Article 1, §40 of the Oregon constitution will not be in effect as long as he remains in power.
In 1984, Oregonians overwhelmingly reinstated the death penalty and enshrined it into the state’s constitution, where meddling legislators could not tamper with it. Article 1, §40 states, “Notwithstanding sections 15 and 16 of this Article, the penalty for aggravated murder as defined by law shall be death upon unanimous affirmative jury findings as provided by law and otherwise shall be life imprisonment with minimum sentence as provided by law.” In Haugen’s case, every legal step has been taken, including an Oregon Supreme Court upholding the legality of the death warrant that decreed Haugen be put to death on December 6. Yet at the last minute, the governor steps in and not only halts Haugen’s execution, but effectively suspends operation of a constitution he took an oath to uphold.
This was not a case in which a convicted death row inmate made a last gasp appeal for executive clemency. Haugen made no such appeal; instead Kitzhaber listened to and agreed with a coalition of death penalty opponents, including the Oregon ACLU and Amnesty International, who wrote to the governor on November 7 urging him to grant Haugen a reprieve and to go further and place a moratorium on all executions:
“We are asking that you grant an indefinite stay of Mr. Haugen’s execution until a comprehensive review has been conducted of Oregon’s death penalty system—a reviewdesigned to assess whether Oregon’s death penalty is working, as well as to identify problems and determine whether solutions exist. In other words, we are asking that you declare a de facto moratorium on executions in Oregon pending a comprehensive study of our death penalty system by a committee that you designate.”
Rather than uphold the Oregon constitution and the will of the people he was elected to serve, Oregon’s governor caved to the demands of the radical Left in one of the most disingenuous demonstrations of “courage” ever displayed by an elected executive. Kitzhaber is unapologetic in admitting he based his executive decision on his own personal opposition to capital punishment. Imagine the outrage if a pro-life governor decreed there would be no abortions performed in Oregon as long as he is in office, despite what the courts and constitution say.
Kitzhaber rails against the time and costs of Oregon’s lengthy appeal process – yet he allowed the very processes he criticizes to proceed, knowing he held the ace in the hole card. He allowed this case to proceed to the state supreme court, when he could have personally saved the parties and taxpayers the effort and costs by simply stepping in and saying, “Hey, everyone. Save your time and money. I’m not going to allow anyone to be executed, no matter what the constitution says or the judicial branch rules.”
The governor’s public statements explaining his decision used virtually every talking point contained in the November 7 letter from the ACLU and friends, including the use of a reprieve and declaration of “a de facto moratorium on executions in Oregon pending a comprehensive study of our death penalty system.”
Because the death penalty is in our constitution, neither the governor nor his progressive allies can change it without another vote of the people. However, rather than repeal Article 1, § 40 as the governor wants, there is another constitution amendment the people should consider: amending Article 5, § 14 to exclude aggravated murder from the reach of the governor’s personal political beliefs.

Bruce McCain is a local attorney and a former Captain with the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office. 

Tell ’em where you saw it. Http://www.victoriataft.com

UPDATE!! Occupy Portland Now Seeks Credit for "Cleaning Up" Parks

** THE “CLEAN UP” (RAKING) HAS BEEN POSTPONED DUE TO MUD.

After leaving Lownsdale and Chapman Squares in a state that resembled toxic brown fields, Occupy Portland now wants credit for coming back and cleaning them up. How noble.

Moonscape

It appears the City will also give them their photo op. How insulting.

Through their new blog and twitter, Occupiers have been beseeched to come out and rake up some leaves. Leaves. I suppose with all the bluster going on–the weather, not the Occupiers this time–there may actually be a few leaves to rake.

One might wonder, what, with 48 hours’ notice, why the “99%ers” didn’t clean up before the cops shut them down on Sunday, November 13th, but apparently that didn’t come up.

 

Nice Tags, Occupiers!
Bottle of Urine

Occupiers left behind piles of clothes, tarps, bottles, pallets, filth, bottles of urine and piles of feces. In all, 70 dump trucks full of junk were carted off the premises. And do you know who I saw doing most of the work piling that stuff up on the day of the planned riot, I mean eviction? Cops. Earning overtime. Thirty City workers worked shifts on Sunday to clear out the rest of junk left behind by these ingrates. I hope they wore their John Kerry Bunny suits.

Piles of Junk

The shamelessness of these people knows no bounds. An effort to green wash their toxic flotsam and jetsam has begun.  Check out this post from their blog:

[O]n Wednesday, November 23, starting at 8:30 a.m., Parks and Recreation is sponsoring a volunteer cleanup. We can turn out in large numbers. It’s a chance to restore our parks and to build good will with the public by raking leaves and preparing the two parks for reseeding. We can put our bodies where our environmental principles are. [emphasis mine]

The City has spent upwards of a $1,000,000.00 —and climbing—in police overtime, the parks will cost as much as $100,000.00 to restore, if not more. Dump truck drivers with City pensions don’t come cheap. And undoubtedly, the green hats at the National Lawyers Guild will sue the City for every raised voice, boo boo and owie “suffered” by the Occupiers.

Worse, Mayor Sam Adams’ preferential treatment for this group also sets up the City for future lawsuits. If you haven’t read those posts of civil rights attorney, Rees Lloyd, and former law enforcement officer and attorney, Bruce McCain you can’t fully appreciate the lunkheadedness of the Portland City Council in their treatment of Occupy Portland.

Photo Credit: Oregonian

These noble Occupiers now want credit for “cleaning up” the parks. They spent five weeks lashing ropes around trees, planting non native species (bamboo) and violating the “rights” of trees by cutting their branches (please see Commissioner Dan Saltzman for information on how trees have “rights”). They’ve urinated, pooped, and concoted bomb making chemicals at these two parks. Which brings up the question: Where’s the EPA or Randy’s HIT Squad when you need them? I’m sure Randy Leonard would have sent his notorious code enforcement goon squad to shut down Occupy Portland, but he was too busy marching with them to notice the electrical theft and toxic-waste-dump-in-the-making. If Cindy’s XXX Book Store and the Greek Cuisina staged a march and invited Randy, maybe they’d be in business today.

Occupiers robbed the taxpayers and extorted the use of these parks from a bunch of useful idiots sitting on the Rainbow City Council. Those same useful idiots now give these Occupiers a photo op for their scrapbooks—and the media.

Monday via twitter, Occupiers were thrilled to report that Commissioner Nick Fish was reopening the parks to allow the Occupiers to clean them per their suggestion. Even Al Sharpton has more humility than these people. They helpfully linked to the City’s website which showed, yep, Lownsdale and Chapman Squares will be the subject of a volunteer effort today.  Strangely, that reference is now gone from the page. It might have something to do with the outrage felt by Portlanders who caught wind of this fraud on somebody’s radio talk show, I dunno.

Reference to Specific Parks Removed

After propping up this public tantrum as some sort of noble exercise, the City is in worse shape than before. The rule of law is in tatters because of the Mayor’s unequal treatment of this group due to his endorsement of the content of their message. Taxpayers are upset that they must shoulder the burden of paying the bills that weren’t necessary. The City is begging for donations–a huge one, $25,000.00 came in from Umpqua Bank yesterday–(ah, the irony!) to defray the cost of the clean up and CYA.

And now they prop them up again by giving these uncivil lawbreakers a photo op.

You just can’t make this stuff up.

Tell ’em where you saw it. Http://www.victoriataft.com