U.S. District Judge Clay D. Land has issued a $20,000 sanction for misconduct in a Columbus, Ga., case involving California lawyer and dentist Orly Taitz, a leader of the "birther" movement whose members have challenged President Barack Obama's U.S. citizenship.
Land issued the 43-page order (pdf) on Tuesday, the third order in which he has taken Taitz to task for filing frivolous litigation and attempting to misuse the federal courts to promote a political agenda that seeks to illegitimize Obama's presidency.
Land, appointed to the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Georgia in 2001 by President George W. Bush, issued the $20,000 penalty "as punishment for [Taitz's] misconduct, as a deterrent to prevent future misconduct, and to protect the integrity of the Court," noting in his order that he could not recall ever having previously imposed monetary sanctions on an attorney of his own accord without a motion from a party in the litigation.
"The absolute absence of any legitimate legal argument, combined with the political diatribe in her motions, demonstrates that Ms. Taitz's purpose is to advance a political agenda and not to pursue a legitimate legal cause of action," Land found. "[C]ounsel's wild accusations may be protected by the First Amendment when she makes them on her blog or in her press conferences, but the federal courts are reserved for hearing genuine legal disputes, not as a platform for political rhetoric and insults."
Don't expect the nuts to give up easily.