Court Report: Team Perry’s Last Stand

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Today in Austin, Rick Perry’s legal dream team earned their retainers at a hearing before Texas Court of Appeals, the highest criminal court in the state. In latest episode of “Fight That Indictment–Masters”, not to be confused with “Fight That Indictment–Collin County”, Perry’s lawyers argued that the felony charges against him should be dismissed. This hearing was Team Perry’s last chance to get their man away from the claws of justice and free him to be the happy-go-lucky ex-governor he’s always wanted to be.

If you’re like us at BOR, this week has almost made us miss Slick Rick. It was good just to see his name flutter across our Twitter stream. And it seems like the Capital reporters who covered the the hearing feel the same way; they brought their A games to the proceedings. Chuck Lindell’s story of The Austin American Statesman got us on the edge of our seats with his lede:

Charging former Gov. Rick Perry with crimes related to his legal use of a veto in 2013 was improper and dangerous, a defense lawyer argued Wednesday in urging the state’s highest criminal court to dismiss the case against Perry.

Improper! Dangerous! It sounds like a combo of Downton Abbey and Sons of Anarchy. Alas, the danger is only to elected official who use threats of vetoes to intimidate other elected officials. And apparently there was a lot of discussion of Perry’s free speech rights. Honestly, Dream Team, given some of the stuff he’s prone to say, shouldn’t your client be begging for his speech to be curtailed just a little?

Best headline goes to The Texas Tribune:

In Spirited Hearing, Perry’s Lawyers Fight to Finish Off Indictment for Good

Again, it sounds so exciting. Like everyone should want to be in a courtroom with eight justices, the Dream Team and State Prosecuting Attorney Lisa McMinn who argued (spoiler alert!) that the trial should go on. For all you judicial nerds, and we know you’re out there, you may be wondering, “What, only eight judges? Was somebody trying to beat the traffic by leaving town early for Thanksgiving?” No, it’s better than that. As Patrick Spivak of The Texas Tribune writes, “Judge Bert Richardson, who oversaw Perry’s case as a district judge and now sits on the Court of Criminal Appeals, did not take part in the Wednesday arguments.”

Talk about a spoiler alert. Get that guy outta there!

In all fairness, it sounds like the Dream Team pulled out all the stops. The judges spent most of the first hour hammering McMinn with questions about her argument no decision on the constitutionality of the case should be made before they hear the evidence. Now it’s up to the Texas Court of Appeals to decide whether to cancel the show or renew it for one more fabulous season. Stay tuned.

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Burnt Orange Report

Burnt Orange Report, or BOR for short, is Texas' largest political blog, written from a progressive/liberal/Democratic standpoint.

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