The continuation of Citizens United. On January 20th, 2012, a Move to Amend Rally was held across the street from the Supreme Court, to protest the 5-4 decision in the Citizens United vs The Federal Election Commission.
This jury trial is for six of the people who were arrested on the Supreme Court steps, charged with parading and unlawful entry of the Supreme Court of the United States. The Defendants are Taylor C Hall, Thi Le, David Barahona, Robert Cruz, Andrea Rea, and William Silvester.
This trial isn’t about being on the steps, as much as it is about the 1st Amendment, Corporate Personhood, and the right of the people to have a voice in their government. This trial is about the ultimate sellout, and giving the voice of the people over to corporate rule.
At the start of the trial, the boring preliminary motions. Boring at least for everyone who’s not a lawyer. Various motions to suppress testimony either defense or prosecution witnesses, as well as issues with videos of arrests. Long boring waste of words and legal mumbo jumbo later, videos were allowed with no sound, as the sound does not have anything to do with this case.
Jury selection. Specific questions for prospective jurors about feelings towards protesters, the Occupy Movement, and whether the prospective juror has ever participated in any protests, occupy related or not. Twelve jurors plus 2 alternates, from a pool of 45 people, some of whom might be sympathetic to the government’s case, and the ones who would maybe on the side of the the people thinking of ways to get out of jury duty all together. Then interviews between jurors and attorneys at the judges bench.
After the selection of the jury, 10 males predominately white, four women 2 black 2 white. Seemed to be a hung jury. The jury is not going to be a problem here. A mixture of people who will not be able return a verdict. Which Mr. Cruz, a defendant, says that the government is happy about, the jury wither hung or find innocence on 1st Amendment grounds, and that on appeals that the Supreme Court want to be able to say NO! The longer this case stays in the court an in appeals, the longer it will give activists time to bring the issue of corporate personhood to the people.
There is no way that the government wants to see this case in appeals, and these defendants are willing to take this case as far as they have to.
After the opening statements, Officer Flick one of the arresting officers, bit it. This was one of the officers involved in the arrests of those under cross examination, could not keep his statements straight.
David Barahona says about today’s appearance “I feel today went very well as we were able to again educate the public about the continued fight over the Citizens United decision that is a danger to our democracy. I feel that there is a good energy from the people and from the court.”
This trial is just beginning, and there are four other defendants here milling about, and everyone is happy, but there is hope here. The government witnesses are going to be shut down by the defense. Officer Flick couldn’t keep his story straight, and couldn’t keep details straight. The government has to prove the guilt of the #J20 defendants. The government is doing their usual job. Which for once works in the people’s favor. There is much left to do this week.