Monday, June 29, 2009

Family Security Matters and other bloggers:

Hello. I'm writing you all because of various post(s) on your websites pertaining to a letter writing campaign to a judge in the Kerchner v. Obama case.

There has been reporting about letters being sent to the judge and added to the court record; see http://www.familysecuritymatters.org/publications/id.3582/pub_detail.asp and http://www.therightsideoflife.com/?p=6404 for two examples.

However, some points need to be clarified so that people get this right and don't waste their time by making critical errors. Kerchner and his attorney (Mario Apuzzo) were on a radio show tonight (June 28th) at http://www.blogtalkradio.com/PatriotsHeartNetwork/2009/06/29/The-Chalice-Show and discussed this letter writing campaign.

First of all, the judge did not solicit these letters; people sent them on their own initiative and they were added to the record. We don't actually know why the judge added them, or if any will be added in the future (they might be, they might not; we don't know for sure). In fact public letters being added like this is a very rare thing. Typically if an outsider wants to comment on a case, it has to be done via an amicus curiae brief. But for some reason, these letters were added to the record, and Kerchner is now encouraging people to send more letters. We don't know if they will be added to the record or not, but they may.

Second, June 29th is NOT the letter deadline. There is no official letter deadline. June 29th was just the due date for the government's response; they responded last week by filing a motion to dismiss, so June 29th is now out of the picture. The court will rule on the government's motion to dismiss on July 20th, so people definitely need to get their letters in before then, and certainly they should do so as soon as possible.

Third, messages sent via fax may not be accepted. They might, but they might not. http://www.njd.uscourts.gov/FAQS.html#faxpleadings states that procedure requires original documents, so sending letters via USPS or FedEx is far more reliable if people actually want their letters to possibly be added to the record.

Fourth, letters need to be addressed not only to Judge Joel Schneider, but also to Judge Jerome B. Simandle. Judge Schneider is the referring magistrate judge; he is outranked by the presiding district court judge, Judge Simandle. Any letters should be addressed to BOTH judges. A good form is this:

The Honorable U.S. District Court Judge Jerome B. Simandle, presiding
The Honorable U.S. Magistrate Judge Joel Schneider, referring
Mitchell H. Cohen Building & U.S. Courthouse
4th & Cooper Streets, Room 1050
Camden, NJ 08101

That address comes from the official court website at http://www.njd.uscourts.gov/dir/JudgeListCamden.html

People also need to remember when writing their letters that this has to do with the Constitution and nothing else. If the judges gets letters saying things like "You have to stop Obama or else we will be destroyed by socialism," it can only cause damage to this case. The courts are not a political branch, nor should they be. The courts are there to apply the law, not dabble in politics. The purpose of this letter campaign should be to highlight the significant Constitutional matters at hand and urge the judges to hear the case on Constitutional grounds and render fair and impartial judgment accordingly.

For the republic,
-Nick

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