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Michael Boggs

Michael Boggs, President Obama's disastrous nominee for the federal bench in Georgia, strained all credulity when he insisted in his confirmation hearing in the Judiciary Committee that he was unaware of the abortion debate happening all around him as a state legislator. He said that he didn't know that an amendment—which he voted for—that would have required physicians providing abortions to post their profiles on a public website and include how many abortions they performed each year could actually harm doctors.

He says that he had no earthly idea at the time that this might create a serious risk to the physicians, and had he realized that at the time, he would have voted against it. That claim was implausible enough in last week's confirmation hearing. Now, Huffington Post has obtained the audio of the Georgia House debate over the amendment in March 2001, and it makes Boggs's testimony completely unbelievable.

"What the Franklin amendment did was say that ... people that performed abortions, that they would have to report how many they were performing a year," state Rep. Larry Walker (D) said as the measure came up for a vote. "Everybody in the Senate agreed that this was bad because it's probably going to cause some people to be harmed, to be honest with you. Maybe killed." [...]

[State Rep. James] Mills pressed Walker on why that could lead to a doctor losing his or her life.

"Have you heard about these clinics being bombed and these people being shot?" asked Walker. "If the word goes out ... this very well could cause that. In fact, I had a leading Republican over there [in the Senate] say, 'We're for right to life. Not this kind of thing.'" [...]

The amendment ultimately failed to pass. But Boggs, who was there to hear his colleagues' critiques of the measure, voted in favor of it.

The Georgia Senate had, in fact, rejected this legislation on precisely the grounds that it would endanger doctors. It failed ultimately in the House, as well. Boggs told senators on the Judiciary Committee last week that because the measure was a floor amendment instead of an actual bill, he just didn't have enough time to study it and didn't realize how dangerous it was. Which means he missed the entire controversy as the amendment failed in the state Senate, that he read no newspaper stories or editorials that appeared while the legislature was considering the amendments, and that he was paying no attention at all to the debate in the House quoted above while it was happening. Despite being in the room.

All of which should be plenty to disqualify Boggs from a lifetime seat on the federal bench. Because there are just two conclusions one can reach from this: he's either an out-and-out liar, or he's a completely uninformed idiot. So far all of Senate leadership has stated their opposition to Boggs, as has the highly influential Rep. John Lewis, from Boggs's home state. Democratic Sens. Mark Begich and John Walsh, both facing re-election battles this year, say they oppose the nomination. It's time the White House pulls the plug on it.

Please sign and send the petition: Reject Michael Boggs’s nomination to the U.S. District Court in Georgia.

Originally posted to Joan McCarter on Wed May 28, 2014 at 08:41 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (29+ / 0-)

    "The NSA’s capability at any time could be turned around on the American people, and no American would have any privacy left, such is the capability to monitor everything. [...] There would be no place to hide."--Frank Church

    by Joan McCarter on Wed May 28, 2014 at 08:41:22 AM PDT

  •  if this guy becomes a judge.. (7+ / 0-)

    I can see him sitting there and just staring blankly ahead as the arguments happen, then someone having to snap him out of it. At which point he'd just distractedly point his gavel at any corporation lawyer present and say "Uhhh whatever that guy said is the ruling.".

  •  I'm Reminded of That Song Judge Roberts Sang (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    by Don McLean, during his confirmation hearing: "Stare, Stare Decisis."

    He's hoping we're not listening still.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Wed May 28, 2014 at 09:20:44 AM PDT

  •  An anti-Obama opportunity? (0+ / 0-)

    It's hard to resist the suspicion that Begich and Walsh are opposing Boggs for the wrong reasons.  As red-state Dems up for re-election, they are probably happy to be able to point to any occasion on which they opposed President Obama.    

    Author, Chomsky's Challenge to American Power

    by Tony Greco on Wed May 28, 2014 at 09:27:23 AM PDT

  •  How are the other... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Greenfinches, KenM13

    nominations going? This guy was just a bone to get the others through. If they were already confirmed, then ditch this guy. Otherwise, drag it out until the others are confirmed.

  •  His deniability isn't even plausible n/t (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
  •  But didn't the deal the Senators made require a (0+ / 0-)

    vote on all nominees? Not a pass but a vote, how does this guy pass the Democratic Senate if red state Dems are lining up to vote against him?

  •  if he's really as ignorant as he says he is . . . (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    then he's too fucking stupid to be a judge.


    In the end, reality always wins.

    by Lenny Flank on Wed May 28, 2014 at 11:44:27 AM PDT

    •  Valid litmus test: (5+ / 0-)

      If any of these apply:
      1) I can't remember what I was thinking,
      2) I can't remember my opinion,
      3) I want to sit on the Federal bench but I am completely unaware of major social issues
      4) I am completely unaware of precedence in the courts,

      then they  should stick to being a tea party politician and rejected out of hand for a lifetime position as a Federal judge.

      "You can die for Freedom, you just can't exercise it"

      by shmuelman on Wed May 28, 2014 at 11:51:27 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  A very simple matter: (5+ / 0-)

    This is identical to Clarence Thomas saying that he didn't recall ever having an opinion about Roe v. Wade when it was decided during his time in law school nor having ever had an opinion of it in the years since.

    1. He is lying to Congress, which shows a contempt for the Constitution's allocation of powers and is therefore not eligible for the job,
    2. He is so incurious, so intellectually inert, that he would not be an effective or useful person for the job and is, in fact, disqualified from serving in the position.

    Either way, saying "I don't remember" and "I don't have an opinion and never did" is a proof of a person's unfitness for a judge's chair.

    "man, proud man,/ Drest in a little brief authority,. . . Plays such fantastic tricks before high heaven/ As make the angels weep; who, with our spleens,/ Would all themselves laugh mortal." -- Shakespeare, Measure for Measure II ii, 117-23

    by The Geogre on Wed May 28, 2014 at 11:47:39 AM PDT

  •  What an effing liar! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Simul Iustus et Peccator


    Oh my god, it's full of cheese! - 2001 first draft

    by sizzzzlerz on Wed May 28, 2014 at 11:52:50 AM PDT

  •  I think this agreement (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    The Dead Man

    really shows Obama's superb bargaining skills.

  •  Who nominated this? WTF, jeebus (0+ / 0-)

    "I decided it is better to scream. Silence is the real crime against humanity." Nadezhda Mandelstam

    by LaFeminista on Wed May 28, 2014 at 12:20:59 PM PDT

  •  Aw (0+ / 0-)

    but he looks so genuine. Sorry, but sometimes people are exactly as they appear.

  •  This guy is a troll - he is NO DEMOCRAT (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    This guys is no Democrat, he is straight up typical Republican, Teabagger, even.  And about the abortion debate?  He's flat out the biggest liar I've seen today - and that's saying a lot.

  •  So... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Lying sack of crap, or just dangerously incompetent?  Either way, no gavel for you.

    (And yes, I know the answer to the question.)

    "And the President of the United States - would be seated right here. I would be here. And he would be here. I would turn - and there he’d be. I could pet ‘im." - Lewis Black

    by libdevil on Wed May 28, 2014 at 12:58:03 PM PDT

  •  It's impossible he didn't know. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ellamenta, mhazard

    I'm sorry, but if you were in Georgia in the late 1990s, you knew about clinic violence.

    You knew because this was still fresh:

    Two bomb explosions, apparently timed to go off about an hour apart, damaged a suburban Atlanta abortion clinic this morning and injured six people, including investigators and news reporters who were drawn to the first blast.

    No one was hurt when the first explosion, at about 9:30 A.M., shattered glass, brought down parts of walls and ceilings, and caused a small fire that was quickly extinguished at a three-story office building, which houses an abortion clinic on the ground floor.

    Then, as firefighters and investigators from several agencies combed the scene and television news crews did live coverage in the adjoining parking lot, a second bomb -- hidden either in a trash bin or nearby car -- exploded, knocking people to the ground and bloodying at least two of them.

    That was January 17, 1997. This bombing, along with the Centennial Olympic Park bombing and the Otherside Lounge bombing, were the handiwork of right-wing terrorist Eric Robert Rudolph, who was fittingly captured years later while scavenging through dumpsters like a rat.

    Anyone in Georgia at that time knew about abortion clinic violence. Anyone claiming otherwise is lying. And anyone who couldn't have figured out that this would put doctors at risk is an idiot, a liar, or both.

    "Speaking for myself only" - Armando "Pay Attention To Me diplomacy never works out very well for anyone but the defense contractors." -Hunter

    by JR on Wed May 28, 2014 at 01:12:05 PM PDT

  •  With friends like Obama who needs enemies? (0+ / 0-)

    Back when GW Bush was still in office I remember Obama's campaign speeches that held out Hope for positive Change. I'm sure I'm not the only voter who believed those broken promises. This disgraceful nomination is just one more kick in the teeth by a president who ran for office on the fraud that he represented a return to decency and an end to right wing rogue government. People need to wake up and think hard about who they back in 2016 because our country can't take much more of what it's been through since 2000.

  •  I can see it all now... (0+ / 0-)

    Obama is negotiating to get some judges to work when the men from Georgia say, "not unless we get something too!"
    Obama "Show me what you've got to offer."
    Georgia Boys "Michael Boggs"
    Obama grudgingly agrees and the Georgia Boys high five each other over forcing the President to do their bidding.
    Obama is sitting there with his poker face turning cartwheels inside because he can't wait for this rube to start talking.

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