by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Joe Biden has named his 2020 running mate: authoritarianism.
American prosecutors wield awesome and terrible powers that lend themselves easily to abuse, and Senator Kamala Harris, formerly the attorney general of California, is an enthusiastic abuser of them.
Harris was a leader in the junta of Democratic state attorneys general that attempted to criminalize dissent in the matter of global warming, using her office’s investigatory powers to target and harass non-profit policy groups while she and her counterpart in New York attempted to shake down Exxon on phony fraud cases.
Until she was stopped by a federal court, Harris was laying subpoenas on organizations such as the Americans for Prosperity Foundation, a conservative-leaning group that is critical of Democratic global-warming proposals. She demanded private information that the organizations were not legally obliged to disclose, including financial information and donor lists, in order to be able to subject the supporters of right-leaning groups to legal and financial harassment. This was, as a federal judge confirmed, an obvious and unquestionable violation of the First Amendment.
It was also a serious abuse of power. Harris’s actions were coordinated with those of then attorney general Eric Schneiderman in New York, who argued — preposterously — that Exxon’s taking a different view of global warming was a form of securities fraud. …
… Harris’s self-serving prosecutorial abuses have been directed at political enemies, but they also put hundreds — maybe thousands — of people in jail or at risk of prosecution on wrongful grounds when it suited her agenda. …
… In the context of Harris’s political vendettas, that eagerness to engage in “systemic violation of the defendants’ constitutional rights” is particularly terrifying.
In choosing this corrupt prosecutor as his vice-presidential candidate, Joe Biden has made a serious error, one that highlights his already substantial deficiencies in judgment.