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Newsweek: Big League Politics First Reported Restraining Order Against Julie Swetnick

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Newsweek reported on the restraining order against Michael Avenatti’s client Julie Swetnick, the third accuser who made outlandish allegations against Supreme Court Justice nominee Brett Kavanaugh.

Swetnick had more than $100,000 in liens including a federal tax lien and a lien on her house when she came forward with her accusations. She has repeatedly sued the state of Maryland, and was herself sued for defamation by an employer. She also maintained a high-level security clearance.

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It turns out that the firm of Washington super-lawyer Debra Katz, attorney for the first accuser Christine Blasey Ford, also represented Swetnick in a sexual harassment lawsuit.

The Wall Street Journal reports Wednesday night:

High-school friends of Judge Kavanaugh on Wednesday rebutted the new allegations of sexual misconduct. In a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee, more than 60 people who said they knew the Supreme Court nominee in high school dismissed as “nonsense” accusations that he spiked drinks at parties so women could be assaulted. They said they didn’t know Ms. Swetnick…

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R., S.C) tweeted his skepticism about Ms. Swetnick’s claims. “I have a difficult time believing any person would continue to go to—according to the affidavit—ten parties over a two-year period where women were routinely gang raped and not report it,” Mr. Graham wrote…

Ms. Swetnick, who Mr. Avenatti said approached him about a month ago with her allegations, has little online presence. A registered voter in Washington, she isn’t affiliated with any political party. Federal Election Commission records show no donations by her to federal candidates. She has had a hunting license in Montana, according to public records, and was for years a resident of Bethesda, Md., where she listed a business in 2009 called International Building Solutions.

Public records reveal a handful of instances in which Ms. Swetnick filed complaints against others, or been the subject of them. Mr. Avenatti didn’t respond to a request for comment…

In 1993, she filed a criminal harassment complaint with state prosecutors in Maryland against a podiatrist and his wife, alleging repeated phone calls, according to court records, but the case was withdrawn two months after it was filed.

In 2001, Ms. Swetnick was the defendant in a domestic-violence case filed by Richard Venneccy in Miami-Dade County, Fla. The case was dismissed when both parties failed to appear in court in March of that year, according to court documents reviewed by the Journal.

Roughly a decade ago, Ms. Swetnick was involved in a dispute with her former employer, New York Life Insurance Co., over a sexual-harassment complaint she filed, according to people familiar with the matter. Representing her in the complaint was the firm run by Debra Katz, the lawyer currently representing Dr. Ford. The company ultimately reached a financial settlement with Ms. Swetnick, the people said.

A spokesman for New York Life confirmed that Ms. Swetnick worked there as an agent for less than two years, from 2006 to 2008. She didn’t list her work there on a résumé posted online.

A spokeswoman for Ms. Katz declined to comment.

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Appeals Court Refuses to Expunge Joe Arpaio’s Contempt Conviction After Presidential Pardon

A judge isn’t happy about the pardon.

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A federal appeals court is refusing to expunge former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpario’s contempt of court conviction, after the sheriff was granted a presidential pardon by President Trump.

Such a legal move is rare if not unprecedented for the recipient of a presidential pardon. Usually federal and state court systems dismiss the convictions of people granted presidential pardon.

Arpaio was convicted of contempt of court in 2017 for refusing to change the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Department’s practices after a judge mandated that the agency cease immigration raids.

Three judges of the liberal San Francisco-based 9th Circuit Court upheld a ruling from a lower circuit court refusing to expunge the legal record of Arpaio’s conviction. The move sets new legal precedent for a recipient of a presidential pardon.

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Arpaio was a frequent target of Eric Holder and the Obama administration, often coming under intense DOJ scrutiny for the practices of the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Department.

Arpaio ran for the United States Senate in 2018, coming in third in the Republican Primart behind Martha McSally and Kelli Ward. He’s now running for his old position as Maricopa County Sheriff once more at the ripe age of 87.

In any case, presidential pardons have traditionally resulted in dismissal of criminal convictions in federal and state courts. It’s hard to think of the 9th Circuit’s decision to maintain the conviction as anything more than a political slight to President Trump.

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