Monday, January 22, 2024

Factual Errors in the Amicus Brief of the ex-Attorneys General

Gerard N. Magliocca

I want to flag an essay by Michael Stern pointing out two factual errors in the amicus brief filed by Attorney General Meese, Attorney General Mukasey, and Attorney General Barr. In its analysis on whether the President is an "officer of the United States," the amicus brief says on Page 10: "[t]hat phrase was construed during the impeachment trial of U.S. Senator William Bount in 1799 by Senator Bayard, one of Blount's defenders."

Stern correctly points that this sentence is twice wrong. First, there was no Senator Bayard. It was Representative Bayard. Second. Bayard was not defending Blount. He was one of the House managers prosecuting Blount. It would be as if I described the Scopes Trial by saying that "Judge Darrow attacked evolution by saying . . ."

I would advise treating the Meese, Mukasey, and Barr brief with caution. I do not have the time to check all of its cites to see what other errors there may be.


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