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Liberals in Hawaii Protect the Ability for Government to Seize Property From Innocent People

Democratic Governor David Ige vetoed a bill to limit civil asset forfeiture.

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A bipartisan coalition has emerged nationwide to ban or limit the controversial process known as civil asset forfeiture, which has allowed government officials to seize and sell off property from suspects before they are actually convicted of a crime.

North Carolina, California, Nevada, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Iowa, Ohio, New Mexico, Nebraska, Oregon, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, and Vermont have led by passing reforms to curb civil asset forfeiture, but Hawaii won’t be joining them thanks to Democratic Governor David Ige.

Ige vetoed House Bill 748, legislation that would have limited the use of civil asset forfeiture to situations in which prosecutors were able to secure felony convictions. This would have stopped most of the abuses that commonly arise from the practice.

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“The legislature finds that civil asset forfeiture frequently leaves innocent citizens deprived of personal property without having ever been charged or convicted of any crime. This amounts to government-sponsored theft,” the bill read.

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Ige released a misleading veto statement, denigrating House Bill 748, and claiming that safeguards are already in place to protect the innocent from being targeted by civil asset forfeiture in Hawaii.

“While the language of the bill characterizes asset forfeiture as “government-sponsored theft,” in reality, civil asset forfeiture is used only when a crime is committed and only for the purposes of stopping ongoing criminal activity and deterring further crimes,” Ige wrote.

“In short, the existing statutes require proof that property was connected to a crime, give an aggrieved owner the right to show lack of knowledge of the criminal acts, and allow for relief from any excessive forfeiture,” Ige claimed.

In actuality, Hawaii has some of the country’s most restrictive civil asset forfeiture laws in place that are rife for abuses. The nonpartisan Institute for Justice (IJ) gave Hawaii a “D-” rating citing their “low standard of proof” requiring “only that the government show by a preponderance of the evidence that property is tied to a crime.”

Carl Bergquist, who works as the Drug Policy Forum of Hawaii’s executive director, also called out Ige’s deceptions.

“The notion that there is no abuse of civil asset forfeiture here in Hawaii is quaint. Last year’s audit reveals that there have been neither oversight nor rules in place to protect property owners from such abuse when it does occur,” he said.

A state audit of all forfeitures from 2015 released last year showed that criminal charges were not filed in 26 percent of cases while charges were completely dismissed in 4 percent of cases. This shows that almost a third of civil asset forfeiture cases targeted those who were likely innocent.

Although Republicans and Democrats throughout the country are now recognizing the widespread abuses related to civil asset forfeiture, the Democratic governor has protected the dubious practice from reform at least temporarily in the Aloha state.

States

Michigan AG Challenges Voter Integrity Lawsuit, Pushes to Keep Social Distancing Mandates to Stop Poll Challengers

Democrats are dedicated to their steal.

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Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel is aggressively fighting back against legal efforts to ensure voter transparency in her state.

Nessel issued a brief on behalf of Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson and Bureau of Elections Director Jonathan Brater. Two conservative activists have filed a lawsuit against Benson and Brater to get an injunction on a state directive that disenfranchises poll challengers by forcing them to stay six feet behind poll workers at all times.

“The State of Michigan has a strong interest in protecting the health and safety of people when they are voting, and also in protecting the election workers while they perform their vital functions. The Secretary’s directive furthers that objective while also providing for challengers to perform their tasks,” Nessel wrote in her brief arguing to make poll challengers irrelevant.

Nessel attempted to claim that the plaintiffs in the lawsuit – state representative candidate Stephen Carra and electoral integrity watchdog Bob Cushman – have only “speculative and hypothetical” concerns because they are not directly impacted by the directive disenfranchising poll challengers. Nessel embarrassed herself by writing blatant falsehoods in her brief.

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“Plaintiff Carra has no greater interest in a lawful election than any other citizen who likewise expects that people at polling locations will adhere to the laws,” she wrote.

“Cushman does not allege that he has been informed by any organization that he will be appointed as a challenger for the November 2020 election, or even from which organization he expects to be appointed. It should be noted that—at the time of filing this brief—less than 8 days remain before Election Day. Cushman’s alleged interest, therefore, remains speculative and renders his interests merely hypothetical,” Nessel added.

However, Cushman promptly produced his poll challenger credential for the court, proving Nessel’s brief to be filled with deceptions. He showed that he is an official poll challenger for election day certified by state Republican Party chairwoman Laura Cox.

Big League Politics reported earlier today on how the Michigan Secretary of State is still enforcing the six-feet mandate, despite any doubletalk coming from the Democrat administration desperate to stop Trump at all costs:

In the aftermath of the #DetroitLeaks scandal, there are serious questions about electoral integrity in the state of Michigan. Big League Politics has reached out to representatives in the Trump campaign and officials with the Secretary of State to clarify what is being done with regards to poll challengers.

We released the audio from poll worker trainings in Detroit, in which the instructor and the prospective workers were cackling about how poll challengers would be disenfranchised due to social distancing mandates. The instructor advised for poll workers to call the police on poll challengers who refuse to adhere to these policies that are not based on any law passed by the state legislature.

We reached out to the Trump Victory team in Michigan to see what is being done with regards to protecting the rights of poll challengers to guard the vote. One representative from Trump Victory explained that the Secretary of State would be giving a directive to local clerks informing them that the six-feet distancing rule is not binding and will not be enforced.

However, Big League Politics reached out to the elections division of the Secretary of State and heard a contradictory perspective. We made contact with the Bureau of Elections Outreach Coordinator, Kristi Dougan, and had a brief discussion about the policy. Dougan confirmed that the six-feet distancing policy will be implemented on election day but danced around exactly how the policy will be enforced.

Dougan disputed the notion that poll challengers will be disenfranchised as a result of the six-feet distancing policy, and she believes that election officials will figure out ways on the fly to keep an orderly process.

“There are some creative ways to accommodate everyone involved,” she said.

The lawsuit was filed after the #DetroitLeaks revelations showed poll workers cackling as an instructor informed them that they could hide behind COVID-19 social distancing requirements to neutralize poll challengers. Big League Politics will report on the court deliberations in this landmark case for electoral integrity, which begins tomorrow morning.

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