Northern Nevada blogger Orrin Johnson is what liberal pundit Jon Ralston calls a “thoughtful” conservative. And just to put this in perspective, to be a “thoughtful” conservative in Jon’s book means you (a) agree with Jon, and/or (b) are an enemy of one of Jon’s enemies.
Anyway, Johnson inked a post over the weekend ripping GOP presidential candidate Newt Gingrich a new one in a manner that showed he (a) clearly didn’t understood the point Gingrich was trying to make, as well as (b) being appalling ignorant of our nation’s founding history as it relates to the judicial branch.
Johnson takes particular umbrage at Gingrich’s statement in last week’s Iowa debate that “The courts have become grotesquely dictatorial” – a statement that perhaps a “Ralston conservative” would take issue with, but not a true conservative.
Gingrich’s suggestion for rectifying the problem of legislating from the bench comes right from Thomas Jefferson himself – author of our Declaration of Independence, by the way. It’s a suggestion “thoughtful” conservative Johnson refers to as “nothing short of lawlessness.”
What Gingrich did NOT say is what Johnson says he said; “to slag the entire judiciary or threaten to perp-walk various judges in handcuffs before some investigative committee if they don’t toe the Presidential line.” That’s not just loose hyperbole; that’s an outright propaganda distortion on Johnson’s part. No wonder Ralston loves the guy!
Johnson also meandered off in his post into a lament about detaining terrorists and the death penalty; pointing out the “fallibility of prosecutors, defense attorneys, and judges; and the fact that there have been so many exonerations that only happen many years after the original trial make me very relieved we have a lengthy appeals process for such cases.”
Now here’s what the incredibly “thoughtful” Mr. Johnson didn’t tell you: He’s a government employee who works in the judicial system. Yep, he’s a deputy public defender in Washoe County…which means his taxpayer-funded job is to help criminals stay out of jail.
Hmm, he attacked Gingrich for attacking rogue judges in the judicial system while being employed by the judicial system that Gingrich attacked. Funny how Orrin failed to disclose this rather brazen conflict of interest, eh? Especially for someone using the word “Principles” in the name of his blog.
One final unrelated note: Orrin – again, a government employee – ran for the state assembly last year and refused to sign the Taxpayer Protection Pledge. Yes, yes…it’s very, VERY clear why Mr. Johnson is Jon Ralston’s kind of “conservative.”