Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) received further backlash and ridicule from his hometown newspaper, The Fresno Bee, this week over his serious legal issues surrounding a trip to Vienna during which he sought dirt on former Vice-President Joe Biden from Ukraine on behalf of President Donald Trump.
Recently indicted Rudy Giuliani associate Lev Parnas offered to testify against Nunes in a statement issued by his attorney, thus opening Nunes up to an ethics investigation and even criminal prosecution as he continues to pursue frivolous lawsuits against social media and the press for mocking him and telling the truth about him.
Indeed, he is suing two parody Twitter accounts called “Devin Nunes’ Mom” and “Devin Nunes’ Cow” even though both accounts are protected by the First Amendment of the Constitution.
But what began as pages with small followings swelled significantly only after Nunes filed lawsuits, as the Fresno Bee pointed out:
The social media backlash mirrored Nunes’ experience earlier this year, when his decision to sue the Twitter cow increased the parody account’s reach exponentially. “Devin Nunes’ Cow” had 1,000 followers on the social media site before Nunes filed his lawsuit. It now has over 667,000 followers.
A recent court brief filed by opposing lawyers eviscerated the lawsuits.
“No reasonable person would believe that Devin Nunes’ cow actually has a Twitter account, or that the hyperbole, satire and cow-related jokes it posts are serious facts,” reads the filing. “It is self-evident that cows are domesticated livestock animals and do not have the intelligence, language, or opposable digits needed to operate a Twitter account. Defendant ‘Devin Nunes’ Mom’ likewise posts satirical patronizing, nagging, mothering comments which ostensibly treat Mr. Nunes as a misbehaving child.”
Indeed, he is certainly misbehaving like a child, perhaps worse, especially since he is also suing several legitimate news organizations, including McClatchy, the parent company of the Fresno Bee, for their accurate reporting on him and his activities. And the Fresno Bee knows exactly what he is trying to do by filing the lawsuits.
Given the frivolous nature of Nunes’ lawsuits, one can easily draw the conclusion that he’s trying to chill free speech by miring his critics in expensive legal proceedings. If that’s the idea, it’s not working. Twitter accounts continue to mock him and the press continues to report on his increasingly grim situation.
And that also will likely soon include the recent Ukraine bombshell surrounding his trip to Vienna, which the Bee also reported on.
“House travel records show Nunes traveled to Europe from Nov. 30 to Dec. 3. Three congressional aides who have worked for Nunes have matching travel receipts for the same dates, House records show,” according to a story by The Bee’s Andrew Sheeler. “The trip cost $63,525.”
Now, Nunes faces calls for an ethics investigation.
All of these lawsuits must be costing the Republican congressman a lot of money, and he’s going to lose every single case because satire is protected free speech and the freedom of the press to report stories is as well. And as he faces serious legal problems stemming from his Vienna trip, he would be better off dropping these ridiculous lawsuits.
“Given the seriousness of these matters, perhaps it’s time for Nunes to abandon his frivolous lawsuit hobby and direct his lawyers’ attention elsewhere,” the Bee concluded.
Because unlike the president, a member of the House can be indicted, stand trial and be sentenced to serve prison time if found guilty by a jury. And just like every other Trump associate, he shouldn’t count on being pardoned.
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