by Sharon Rondeau
(Jun. 25, 2022) – A challenge to two foreign-born candidates competing in an August 9 primary in Minnesota’s fifth congressional district received a hearing Thursday and is awaiting a decision from Judge Bridget Sullivan, according to the docket Saturday evening.
Filed pro se in early May in Minnesota’s Fourth Judicial District by a third candidate in the Democrat primary, AJ Kern, the case asked the court to compel incumbent Ilhan Omar and another primary contestant, Don Samuels, to provide proof of U.S. citizenship given their acknowledged foreign births, absence of any evidence of their naturalization, and their Affidavits of Candidacy filed with the secretary of state’s office.
Kern named as a third defendant Secretary of State Steve Simon for failing to require proof that Omar and Samuels meet the eligibility requirements for the office they seek.
Omar was born in Somalia, and Samuels is a native of Jamaica. On their respective websites, including Omar’s congressional website, neither sports a date or year of naturalization nor any statement about their citizenship status.
Kern began her quest for the information by sending certified letters to Omar and Samuels requesting permission to obtain their naturalization records from the federal government if they exist. After receiving no response from either, she filed a civil complaint asking the court to enforce Article I, Section 2, clause 2 of the U.S. Constitution, which sets forth the citizenship requirement for members of the U.S. House of Representatives as “seven Years a Citizen of the United States.”
Members of the public were permitted to attend the hearing, which was held remotely via Zoom. While this writer was unable to attend, P&E reader Jonathan David Mooers did so, afterward providing an account of the proceedings:
Judge Sullivan listened to three people and no one from the public (= we were to be “listeners”):
Minn. Assist AG Hartshorn did most of the talking, was a bit nervous, young, and maybe unsure of himself in this high profile setting; he pushed the argument that procedures of Minn Statute 209* (mentioned Rule 12) MUST be followed so any state Judge like Sullivan MUST dismiss this case as it is out of her jurisdiction and out of procedure; that AJ’s case was not procedurally in the right time line by starting this case over 3 months before the primary is already over and then filing 5 days thereafter (= that way, procedurally making this citizenship challenge moot after the primary, as intended, it seems); that no Minn. judge or court could legally hear this case since citizenship vetting for U.S. House of Reps. is the domain of the U.S. House of Reps. (= but, no one at U.S. House of Reps. in the past or present has initiated any investigation on Ilhan, nor will they so as to incriminate themselves, I believe, because they are lawless under The Whoreable Nancy Pelosi!); at one point Hartshorn was caught flat-footed when asked how candidates are vetted by Minn. Secretary of State (SOS) to which he more or less improvised it is not the job of the Minn. Secretary of State by law (implying, perhaps, Minn. SOS has done nothing wrong, he is simply following Minn. laws as he is supposed to; just rely on the signed info of the candidate’s submitted Affidavit of Candidacy! So, if Minn. law says SOS to open any door to a bank where a bank-robbery is underway, SOS MUST open that door per Minn. law, right?!); Procedure uber alles with no mention of the merits of the case or supremacy clause of U.S. Constitution or their oaths of office to defend the U.S. Constitution or penalties for previously/presently impersonating as U.S. Rep. as being an actionable felony; it was improper to list Minn. SOS as a “contestee” in this case as this is the vetting job of the U.S. House of Reps.; there were seven election challenges in 2020 election that listed Minn. SOS as a “contestee” and all seven were resolved in favor of Minn. SOS.
Atty. Nauen cited points of procedural defects similar to Hartshorn, including (1) insufficient service, meaning, AJ didn’t serve Ilhan with legal notification of contest herein, so no one can go after Ilhan, (2) saying that Minn. Statute 209 has no procedure to pre-election (pre-primary?) challenge is entirely a statutory claim and (3) Minn. election challenge can only challenge which candidate got the most votes (and not challenge a candidate’s citizenship as there is no mechanism to do this under current Minn. laws, as I took it)
AJ Kern calmly read from prepared defense statement, was interrupted by Judge Sullivan to scold “chat” participants to stop chatting (since any supposed ZOOM chat feature noise was not noticed at my end, was this a courtroom histrionic to interrupt AJ’s train of thought? not sure); AJ was composed in her delivery and offered the very compelling argument of American people are being disserviced if no one, including the Minn. SOS as THE chief of elections, will vet any candidates for America’s highest federal offices.
Judge Sullivan then asked for final comments from all three and said she would render an opinion/ruling next week. Neither Ilhan Omar (Somali citizen only?) or Don Samuels (Jamaican citizen only?) or Minn. SOS Simon spoke, or were present on this ZOOM hearing that I was aware of or that Judge Sullivan mentioned, except Judge Sullivan did mention Don Samuels was not present.
The Post & Email’s request to the court clerk’s office to view any video-recording of the hearing which might exist received no response on Friday.