Wednesday, December 14, 2011



December 14, 2011

JustiaGate: 'Natural Born' Supreme Court Citations Disappear

By Dianna C. Cotter with L. Donofrio Esq.

Did deliberately aid Barack Obama in 2008 by helping to hide the one legal case that might prevent him from legally qualifying for the presidency?

On October 20, 2011, New Jersey attorney Leo Donofrio accused online legal research behemoth of surgically redacting important information from their publication of 25 U.S. Supreme Court opinions which cite Minor v. Happersett, an 1874 decision which arguably contains language that appears to disqualify anyone from presidential eligibility who wasn't born in the country to parents who were citizens.  According to the decision in Happersett:

At common-law, with the nomenclature of which the framers of the Constitution were familiar, it was never doubted that all children born in a country of parents who were its citizens became themselves, upon their birth, citizens also. These were natives, or natural-born citizens, as distinguished from aliens or foreigners.  (Minor v. Happersett, 88 U.S. 162, 167 [1874])

Justia is a Google Mini-powered website which has singled itself out as one of the most comprehensive and easy-to-search legal sites on the internet.  Other legal resources such as Lexis can cost as much as $5,000 a month for a subscription, and it's impossible to hyperlink to cases which include copyrighted headnotes and analysis.  This is why powerful law firms such as Perkins Coie (where former Obama White House Counsel Bob Bauer practices law) have cited Justia's pages.
The Wayback Machine, run by InternetArchive.Org, is the means by which the changes made at Justia were documented over time.  Among the first responses from Justia regarding this controversy was to block its Supreme Court Server from being viewed by the Wayback Machine.

Click the following link for an image documenting the pattern of changes made to one of those 25 cases, Luria v. U.S., 231 U.S. 9 (1913).  Notice that the case name "Minor v. Happersett" has been removed, minimizing the case searchability.

The cover-up simply reeks.  While Justia owner Tim Stanley told CNET that there were more cases which had also been "mangled," there is no way to identify how much bogus law was published by Justia over the three-year period in question.  Minor v. Happersett simply disappeared from cases which cited it, minimizing its footprint on the internet at a critical juncture in history -- the election of 2008.

McCarthy v. Briscoe, 429 U.S. 1317 (1976)

On Nov. 3, 2008, one day before the election, Donofrio petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court to stay the ballots in New Jersey from being used the next day in the case Donofrio v. Wells, claiming that the eligibility of both Obama and McCain had not been verified by the NJ secretary of State as required by law.

In his research, Donofrio had found a reference to McCarthy v. Briscoe, 429 U.S. 1317 (1976), an important precedent which allows the Supreme Court -- or even one justice acting alone if an emergency stay is requested -- to order a secretary of state to insert a name on the ballot.  The holding of the case implies a reciprocal power to remove names from ballots for the several secretaries of State, as well as the U.S. Supreme Court.

Back in '08, Donofrio couldn't find the in chambers decision anywhere online.  Forced to go old-school, he procured it from a brick-and-mortar law library.  But to this day, McCarthy v. Briscoe remains elusive at Justia.  If you look in their "Volume" database and click "429," all of the in chambers opinions are mysteriously absent. 

In chambers opinions generally begin on pg. 1,301, but not every official volume has them.  For example, Volume 428 has no in chambers opinions, but 429, 434, and 439 do.  Justia's database for Volumes 434 and 439 do exhibit the in chambers opinions, but Volume 429 has them scrubbed.
If you search Justia's Cases & Opinions by Year in 1976, McCarthy v. Briscoe is listed.  There are two cases, an insignificant one-page opinion at page 1,316, followed by the relevant decision on pg. 1,317.  There are links to the preview as well as "Full Text."  However, all of the links are broken, leading back to Justia's front page.

Additionally, Justia's publication of a following 1977 5th Circuit case, 553 F.2d 1005, includes a hyperlink back to 429 U.S. 1317, and that link is also mysteriously broken.

It would be instructive to track the timeline of changes in the Wayback Machine, but Justia is steadfastly preventing that transparency.  Furthermore, if Justia continues its previous pattern, the links (eg: will be restored upon publication of this article.  

Take your screenshots now.

With numerous state-level challenges being prepared by opponents of Obama's eligibility for 2012, McCarthy v. Briscoe will be a required citation.  That it continues to be unavailable at Justia seriously calls into question Stanley's contention that the cases on Justia's servers were mangled by an innocent coding error.

This claim of innocent technical error was debunked by Dr. David Hansen, a Ph.D. in computer science.  McCarthy v. Briscoe, 429 U.S. 1317 (1976) at Justia shows a completely different pattern of information removal from what could be explained away by a single coding error which erased case names.

The removal of prior versions of cases from the Wayback Machine by Justia amounts to nothing less than supreme hypocrisy considering Stanley's high stature as a leading light championing transparency of legal information for the public.  

Use at your own risk

Justia in 2008 tangled with the State of Oregon when it downloaded and republished the State Statutes without either informing the state or gaining its permission, in violation of copyright law.  Dexter Johnson, the head of the Office of Oregon State Legislative Counsel Committee reported that the Committee received information that the State Statutes were available at a website other than the state.  Upon investigation, the Committee ultimately decided not to pursue legal action against Justia for copyright violation; instead, "the committee decided to waive its copyright on the Oregon Revised Statutes going forward," said Johnson in a phone interview.

It is left to a user of Justia to verify the information to be found within its pages, despite a disclaimer of "Full Text of Case" on its pages.  Upon inquiry with the U.S. Supreme Court, Patricia McCabe Estrada, deputy public information officer of the U.S. Supreme Court, responded that "the official opinions of the Supreme Court are posted on the Court's Website and we don't generally monitor other sites." 

Johnson says Oregon also does not have a monitoring policy in place.  When asked how a person using Justia's services would know if he were receiving accurate information or not, Johnson replied:

The only way, it seems to me, would be to compare that with what's on the legislature's website. In which case you might as well go directly to the legislature's website. It's one of the reasons why we had originally suggested that they have their website simply point in the direction of our own.

Justia publishes SCOTUS cases with the positive affirmation "Full Text of Case."  Clearly this was not done with regards to the specific opinions it redacted and covered up.  Whether a violation of law or not, various non-profit agencies, students, law firms, and private researchers who relied upon Justia's services remain in the dark, unable to determine if their research materials were altered by Justia, as the company has released neither what it redacted nor in what cases.  Without an effective means of verifying accuracy, Justia's transparency and credibility are questionable.


It turns out that Justia received additional help from their close counterpart in the open government information movement, Public.Resource.Org (PRO), founded and run by Carl Malamud.  Malamud was also the chief technology officer for The Center for American Progress, a progressive think-tank funded in part by none other than George Soros.  Tim Stanley is on the Board of Trustees at Public.Resource.Org, and Justia is PRO's top benefactor.  Stanley is also a co-convenor of Malamud's organization, which, despite appearances, is not a government entity. 
PRO makes available a huge database of court cases to other organizations such as the Cornell Legal Institute, which has now been dragged into the Justia mess through a case that cements Minor v. Happersett as defining "Natural Born Citizen."  Ex Parte: Lockwood  states:

In Minor v. Happersett, 21 Wall. 162, this court held that the word 'citizen' is often used to convey the idea of membership in a nation, and, in that sense, women, if born of citizen parents within the jurisdiction of the United States, have always been considered citizens of the United States, as much so before the adoption of the fourteenth amendment of the constitution as since[.]"  (Emphasis added.)

However, at Cornell, the opinion is cut off right after "Minor v.".  Someone searching for "Minor v. Happersett" will be detoured from this case and its holding in support of Minor's precedence.  Cornell's version of Ex Parte: Lockwood is completely mangled.  Yet Lockwood helps prove that the decision in Minor created a legal definition of "Natural Born Citizen," something the national narrative states that no Supreme Court Case has ever done, in part because Minor's importance was effectively obscured.

There has been a deliberate, targeted effort to minimize if not erase the legal importance of Minor v. Happersett in defining the term "Natural Born Citizen."  Justia and PRO champion freedom of information yet at the same time hypocritically redacted the law to suit a political goal.  Justia and Tim Stanley butchered these cases and, when caught, removed Wayback Machine's access to Justia's entire Supreme Court server.  The only thing hidden now is the evidence of Justia's deliberate scrubbing, as the cases are available in the public domain.

Tim Stanley has not returned messages asking for comment on this story at time of publication.  Sometime last week, Justia added a disclaimer at the bottom of its SCOTUS case texts:

Official Supreme Court caselaw is only found in the print version of the United States Reports. Justia caselaw is provided for general informational purposes only, and may not reflect current legal developments, verdicts or settlements. We make no warranties or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained on this site or information linked to from this site. Please check official sources.

The disclaimer speaks volumes about the credibility and accuracy of


Showing 18 comments

  • What is incredible to me, is that we have a mountain of hidden or fabricated facts about Obama's life prior to his selection as president. No transcripts from any of the colleges he attended, no one at these schools remember him. A trip to Pakistan when no American would normally be allowed to enter the country. Two highly lauded books which now appear to be ghostwritten frauds. We have evidence of voter fraud and intimidation during both the primary process and the general election. We have many "coincidences" such as the timely disappearance of pertinent information on Justia dot com and  yet to mention any of this in public is to be thrown into the category of "tin foil hat" wearing fool. Call me a fool, but this man and his entire administration stinks on ice.
  • The audacity, hoping no one would notice. Thank goodness we have intrepid true journalists like you.  The unfathomable becomes ever more believable with each discovery like yours that hints at the extensive preemptive and follow-on manipulation of information the purveyors of "the facts" carried out in order to smooth over any bumps on the road to the left's anticipated glory days.

  • Just like the relentless efforts of the NAZI hunters, continue your pursuit. when you bring this fraud to justice with all his enablers and abettors, the "oceans will recede, the tyranny will be overturned, and America will rise again". thank you!

  • The good ole USA. Our laws are only as good as our lawyers internet skills? OMG. I love a hard copy. It's why they made them. I have lots of books. More importantly, I know where to get them. This doesn't seem that hard to me, and yet we have an illegal running our country. As far as anyone knows. What's an uneducated guy to do? Inconsolable weeping?

  • TonyRome Today 07:52 AM
    Can anyone tell me why the main stream media (includes Fox as of late) hasn't covered this story?  I will save you the time to think about it, they are all carrying Barack Hussein Obama's water.  They all fear that if they criticize Barack they will be labeled racist.   Shame on all of them.  Starting in 2003 Congress made no less than 8 attempts to change the Constitutional requirement that a person who wanted to be POTUS or VP had to be a "natural born Citizen."  This is proof positive that the Congress of the United States knows what was meant by "natural born Citizen" or they would not have made such a strong effort to change the requirement avoiding the use of an amendment. 

    The fact that Barack Hussein Obama was not forced into a vetting process which John McCain was forced into to prove he was a "natural born Citizen" will eventually result in nothing but total embarrassment for our nation and in particular our Congress.  McCain proved he was a "natural born Citizen" via a birth certificate that showed both his parents were American citizens at the time he was born.  Barack will never qualify and he is presently...
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  • borderraven Today 08:03 AM 
    "At common-law, with the nomenclature of which the framers of the Constitution were familiar, it was never doubted that all children born in a country of parents who were its citizens became themselves, upon their birth, citizens also. These were natives, or natural-born citizens, as distinguished from aliens or foreigners.  (Minor v. Happersett, 88 U.S. 162, 167 [1874])"

    Two words in the above quote bear weight. In the clause "it was never doubted that all children born in a country of parents who were its citizens became themselves", the word "in" implies jus soli and the word "of" implies jus sanginis. So, if the phrase were written, "it was never doubted that all children born jus soli in a country jus sanguinis of parents who were its citizens became themselves...".

    imsi12b Today 08:20 AM 
    Wish I could say something as lofty as my predecessors here, but all I can think of is George Orwell's "Animal Farm" where every time the other animals (the non-pigs) looked at the Constitution it was slightly different than they remembered it.

  • Chrisden Today 09:07 AM 
    Why has nothing been done about this issue?  Why have we allowed the "coverup" to continue?  I have to believe that our entire government and legal system have been corrupted.  I told my Senator about Minor v. Happersett 3 years ago.  His response was that Congress declared Obama a citizen (nothing said about the natural born requirement) and thus eligible for POTUS.  Case closed.  The entire ruling class is involved in this coverup.

  • Our enemies have told us that they were going to destroy this great country from within for decades and the older I become the more I see their desires and threats coming to fruition.  And with the election of Barack Hussein Obama our enemies have truly grasped the golden ring and yet, with all the utter disasters and imcompetence displayed by this Nowhere Man in the Oval Office, he is still polling in the 40+ percentages and could win re-election.  This is utterly nightmarish and while reading this excellent article I know my blood pressure must have gone off the scale realizing just how deep the conspiracy to protect 0bama runs and how wide its tenacles continue to grow with each new revelation.

    In a lighter point, I sure do hope Mr. Peabody and Sherman can get that Way Back Machine fixed and please give me a call when you do, I would love to tag along and go back for a short respite from all that I see and hear going on in a very screwed up world -- maybe to when I was eight years old when my biggest fear was that a rain shower was going to cause the cancellation...
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  • So JustiaGate committed fraud...shame on them. The question remains how did this help Obama bypass the law? Is there not any old dusty law books and court records regarding Minor v. Happersett. Oh that's right you found those court cases without Justiagate. It appears to be settle by the supreme court the Natural Born clause definition. Now what do we do about it since it is settled law?

  • Just another coverup in an administration of cover ups. It sickens me to think that all of the future generations will suffer directly as a result of the election of this non american hateful leftist to the lofty position of president. When I joined military years ago the FBI background check for a secret security clearance went all the way back to my 5th grade teacher, I was born and raised in one place and attended one school system from 1-12 grade. I cannot believe that our great nation has devolved into such a patently oblivious state.

    2012 is the last hope, either we get the elitist in D/C back under the rule of law or this nation is doomed to the ashpit of history. History will not be kind to those who sat back and allowed this to occur. Think of the normal nation loving Germans who sat on the sidelines or the soldiers who herded 6 million jews into the rail cars and killing stations. Rational thinking Americans blinded by political correctness are quickly becoming the next in a long line of sheep being lead by the Judas goats into the grinder of socialism.

  • angrytom 41 minutes ago
    There has to be a direct challenge from a lawyer for the client challenging the issue.Where are these people? Why are they waiting for?

  • I would urge fellow conservatives to exercise a bit of skepticism and not accept every new conspiracy theory that pops up.  At most, the authors have shown that Justia's version of old cases aren't necessarily accurate.  However, they haven't shown that the discrepancies exist due to a deliberate effort to hide “conservative” cases from public view .  If we're really interested in avoiding the "tin hat" label, let's be realistic about a few things:  1. Justia’s entire business model depends on people accepting the accuracy of its online databases.  Given this, how likely is it that its officers would intentionally misrepresent the text of old cases, KNOWING that there are myriad correct versions of those same cases available both to the public and, more importantly, to lawyers and judges?  2.  If Justia were trying to "diminish the importance" of Minor v. Happersett in establishing a definition of NBC, wouldn't it make a great deal more sense for them to alter that particular case in some way (or disappear it completely) rather than simply alter cases that cite to Minor?  3.  Wouldn't any lawyer or judge actually involved in litigating the NBC issue be aware of the existence and significance of Minor  and thus address that case as part of their analysis of the issue?  I'm trying hard...
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  • Muldoon1 29 minutes ago
    What kind of movie are we watching, what kind of book are we reading, to where this situation is allowed to continue. How can little barry be placed on state ballots without being properly vetted. We have a little over 10 months to correct this wrong before the 2012 election, and no one with the power to fix this seems concerned. If this is not corrected, in my mind, it proves the Republicans are complicit in this scheme to defraud the American people. I expect as much from the socialists, but for the Repubs to sit idly by and watch this happen is unthinkable!

  • So what?

    Obama is in place and possession is 9/10 of the law. Obama with his troops depend on this. They  are living their "dream". Long planned and engineered in America, as  in Europe with the present EU fiasco, i.e. the entire West. Obama is culmination of Progressives aims. To transform, to change a strong  structure it is necessary to "deconstruct" to make way for the "new".They "know their enemy" and use this most important rule of warfare very successfully. The engines of the nation have BEEN GIVEN  into their hands to drive the nation to where  they want because they have no serious effective opponents to stop him/them  from their  attacks on the nation's laws and structure. Few  willing to risk, singly or in cooperation, their seats on the gravy train of politics to stop him.

    Few  in those positions to which has been given the DUTY to stop unlawful arrogations of power: Congress, Senate and Judiciary. All busy playing in-group games, bowing and kneeling to this Obama and his generals for  personal advantage, or seeking ways for self aggrandisement in "not letting a crisis go to waste". Forgotten is their bounden duty to their oath of office in their contract with...
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  • This article is years late, although another was published here a few months ago. Like everyone else is asking; do something! Don't just write an article exposing it. Find someone to file a law suit. This is where the GOP gets its head handed to it everytime-the media and legal war. It is a conspiracy (war) of sorts and the socialists are cleaning our clocks!!

    I am an unemployed nuclear technician, I do not have the resources but I have ideas. One is the fight over this issue was over on election day 2008-welcome to the party.

  • DaveOregon 19 minutes ago
    After reading this - dod you really want the government controlling the Internet? Obummer and his allys - which seem to be many in private as well as public domain - are rewriting facts and creating fiction and posting/publishing it as facts. No government agency should ever be able to control the content of the internet; you should be prosecuted for knowingly providing false inforamtion; prosecuted for knowingly abridging court records, etc. Bankers, financial managers and attorneys working in collusion with communist/socialists to get Obummer elected. Saw that coming -remember "Manchurian Candidate" - coure Hillary Clinton was the Chinese's main effort there - but Obummer was their "ace" in the hole. We are in one sorry state of affairs people...not sure we can stop the ship from sinking if no one admits the boat has holes in the hull.

  • inspectorudy 14 minutes ago
    This says a lot about the state of our nation. For a legal reference web site to DELIBERATELY erase information that may be used by site PAYING visitors is a total violation of trust. How can anyone in the future trust a web site that they know has lied or cheated in the past? This is on a par with Wikipedia and there totally unreliable definitions. Who at this point in time would ever pay to use their service again? I am thankful that someone has gone to the trouble to ferret out this deliberate lie and I can only hope that you are able to entice the networks to make an issue of it. Good work.

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