THE COURT: Good morning. This is Chancellor Fleenor. This is docket number 20-0685, the case of State of Tennessee on the relation of David Jonathan Tulis v. Bill Lee, Governor, State of Tennessee, in his personal capacity and in his official capacity; and Rebekah Barnes, administrator, Hamilton County Health Department, in her personal capacity and in her official capacity. This is — this case was set by order entered December 8, 2020, for a telephonic hearing on the respondent — the two respondents’ motions to dismiss. Could you identify the parties that are on the call, please?
MS. MILLING: Sharon Milling, for Rebekah Barnes, Your Honor.
THE COURT: Thank you.
MS. KLEINFELTER: Janet Kleinfelter, with the Attorney General’s Office, on behalf of Governor Lee.
THE COURT: Thank you.
MR. TULIS: And David — David Jonathan Tulis, on relation for the State of Tennessee.
THE COURT: Thank you.
THE REPORTER: This is the court reporter, Chancellor, Sheila Wilson. And I understand we have some other participants, general participants, on the line.
THE COURT: All right. That’s fine. Thank you. I appreciate it. The Court is doing this telephonically pursuant to the order entered December 8th. However, preliminarily there was a motion filed by Mr. Tulis to vacate this hearing order and for a hearing under the Constitution. So I’m going to have to take this matter up first. Mr. Tulis, you filed the motion. I’ll allow you to argue your motion.
MR. TULIS: Yes, ma’am — yes, Your Honor. Thank you. Again, this is Davis Tulis on — State of Tennessee on relation. And I’m objecting to a phone hearing, as I, as I made reference in my written notice to the court. It’s a, it’s a due process violation that I didn’t get a hearing before this morning to vacate that order filed January 7th. I filed my objection in writing seven days ago and sent copies out. I have material due process harm on the point of objected motion on the Lee default. And on that matter there is something that, that — dealing with the record on the default, Your Honor, that requires being present, because I’m demanding to see the record on which the Court made the order that respondent Lee is not and was not in default as to the time allotted to him by the rules, 30 days plus three with mail service. The — I visited the court January the 7th, Thursday, Your Honor, to examine the record. And there’s nothing in the file on the service to Governor Lee that contradicts what the record has in there from me. It is alleged, in the court’s approved order entered January the 4th, to be — the service date for Governor Lee, respondent Lee, to be October 26th. And the reason this hearing has to be in person is because I’m demanding to see, before the court and have the court look over, the material proof of this alleged fact. I object, Your Honor, to the hearing being by phone. And also I object that I cannot see this, this material. And so I’d like — would you give me leave to discuss this, this evidence, Your Honor, this record? Can we do that by — in this discussion here?
THE COURT: To begin with, Mr. Tulis, you inaccurately stated the filing date. The filing date of your motion is January 4th.This — secondly, you admitted you’ve been up to the court to see the record. The record is not closed. It’s open.
MR. TULIS: I understand.
THE COURT: And thirdly, what you’re arguing has already been argued. So, no, you’re seeking a second bite of the apple, which as the court found, neither respondent was in default. Now, do you want to argue this motion, that you asked for in-person hearing?
MR. TULIS: Well, I’m doing that now by highlighting the fact that while I have inspected the record, we have an order, Your Honor, that makes reference to another record, that I have not seen and that has not been given to me, about respondent Lee’s receipt of service. And the receipt of service, as the record shows, is October the 6th and not, not, as your order has it, October 26. Where, Your Honor, does October 26 come from? That is a date — there’s material that I have not seen. The record does not show that date. And so somehow the court has excused Governor Lee being in default as to the rule for 30 days to answer, Your Honor.
THE COURT: All right. And again, I’ve already ordered that she was — he was not in default. You can take that up on appeal, but you’re relitigating the same issue. And the record is open. Whatever the record says is what the record says. That —
MR. TULIS: Well —
THE COURT: You don’t have to — sir, don’t interrupt me. It’s difficult. Don’t interrupt me. I’m ruling. Do you want to argue whether you’re entitled to an in-person hearing, other than they’re in default? That’s already been litigated. This is a new motion.
MR. TULIS: Well, as — yes, ma’am, I understand. But the Constitution requires that the courts be open —
THE COURT: Okay.
MR. TULIS: — and that is, that is to be that they are to be physically open in their buildings so that people, common people, rich people, poor people, people with phones, people without phones, can come and attend that — to watch the operation of justice and in your court of equity. And we have, we have, in the opinion from the Supreme Court, Richmond Newspapers vs. Virginia, an excellent diagnosis of the problem of closed courts. If courts are closed, people can’t be sure that justice is being reached in criminal matters and also in civil matters. And I would say that the order to close your court today, Your Honor, is premised on the fraud, that record of this case entered October the 2nd in your court, fraud all around as regards the danger — the danger of this virus and the failure of the governor to obey 68-5-104. So, there’s not, there’s not a cause — there’s not a lawful cause to have the court closed today, Your Honor. That’s, that’s my, that’s my argument for my motion, orally, written, that you got in writing, why this hearing needs to be in person.
THE COURT: Okay. Thank you. All right. Response. Ms. Kleinfelter, I’ll start with you.
MS. KLEINFELTER: Yes, Your Honor. So, respectfully, there is not a constitutional claim here, whether we’re talking about under the First Amendment or Article I, Section 17 of the Tennessee Constitution. Both of those stand for the proposition that the courts are to be open to provide a remedy — to provide a cause of action if someone has been injured. The courts have never construed either provision to mean that the courts have to be physically open. And in this instance, Your Honor, the court is operating under the order that has been put down by the Tennessee Supreme Court with respect to how courts are to be operated in light of COVID-19. And there is not a situation here where the courts have been closed, as evidenced by the fact that I believe there are at least four individuals who are neither parties nor counsel of record in this proceeding who are on the phone and have been able to participate in this proceeding. So, there’s really not a constitutional claim here for the hearing to be held in person, physically in person. And, factually, the hearing is as the court — this proceeding has not been closed by the court. Instead, the court is operating in accordance with the Tennessee Supreme Court’s order.
THE COURT: Anything else?
MS. KLEINFELTER: No, Your Honor. Thank you.
THE COURT: All right. Ms. Milling, I’ll allow you to respond as well.
MS. MILLING: Your Honor, my, my argument is going to be exactly the same as Ms. Kleinfelter’s, but I would add to that that Mr. Tulis posted on his Facebook — I don’t remember which one it was, he has several, but he posted on some website that he’s a part of the phone number and the access code for people to be involved. So it would appear that the people who want to observe this hearing are here observing this hearing.
THE COURT: All right.
MR. TULIS: Question.
THE COURT: Sorry? Excuse me?
Fleenor says court ‘open’
MR. TULIS: Question. Is it possible for people to join this hearing at any time in the course of moments or minutes that it lasts, or do they have to come in at the beginning —
THE COURT: No —
MR. TULIS: — and are otherwise barred?
THE COURT: No. It’s open all day. All right. The court’s ready to rule now. The court is ruling on this preliminary motion filed by Mr. Tulis to vacate hearing order and for hearing under Constitution. What he — what Mr. Tulis stated as grounds in his motion is that he’s entitled to an in-person hearing because of the January 11, 2021 order of the Supreme Court which states that proceedings directly related to the COVID-19 public health emergency are among those exceptions to the suspension for in-person proceedings. What the court finds is that — and I’ll read it directly. The following — this is the Supreme Court’s order entered December 22, 2020, which states: “The following are exceptions to the suspension of in-person court proceedings: “Proceedings directly related to the COVID-19 public health emergency.” The court discerns that these are matters where the government imposes a quarantine on someone or someone is brought before the court for violating that quarantine, because all of the exceptions to the suspension of in-person court proceedings are matters where someone’s rights are potentially restricted by the state or third-party, without due process, through an emergency order. In other words, they are hauled into court against their will. Here, the relator has not been hauled into court against his will; rather, the relator has initiated this, this petition. This is not a private hearing, as he states in his motion, this is a public hearing. Anyone can access my courtroom virtually by using the information that’s posted outside of my courtroom door, which is the telephone number and the access code. As evidence of this, there are members of the public listening in to this. This has been posted since March of last year. And it’s also posted at other parts on the third floor of the courthouse where my courtroom appears.
And we have 25 people attend hearings telephonically on occasion. Also, for instance, if I have a 10:00 hearing and a 10:30 hearing and my 10:00 hearing goes over, the people on the 10:30 hearing sit and listen to the completion of the 10:00 hearing. This is an open proceeding. This is — now, as to, as to specifically this hearing today, this is not an emergency hearing to which Mr. Tulis has been summoned into the court against his will. Neither the state nor any third party filed the action against Mr. Tulis. Relator filed this writ of mandamus on 11 October 2nd, 2020, and requested an expedited hearing. I set it as quickly as I could as soon as service was obtained on the defendants and time for them to respond.
The Governor filed a motion to dismiss, Ms. Barnes requested one week [an extra month, actually. — Ed] to file her motion to dismiss. So the court set both motions to dismiss to be heard telephonically on January 11, 2021, by order entered December 8th. Mr. — that was an open court, in-person proceeding. Mr. Tulis did not object at that time to the telephonic hearing, and then he files an objection to the telephonic hearing on January 4th. The reason I set it telephonically in December was out of discretion. It was because I was not accepting any testimony; I did not have to observe the demeanor of the witnesses; I did not have to determine their credibility. This is merely argument on questions of law. The court can consider this telephonically. However, now, after that order was entered the Supreme Court has entered a new order which states that — this is paragraph two of the order entered December 22, 2020: Proceedings — “All in-person proceedings in all state and local courts in Tennessee shall be suspended through the close of business on Friday, January 29, 2021, subject to certain exceptions.” So now we’re not allowed to have an in-person proceeding on this, it must be done telephonically. So the court rules, as a matter of law, that Mr. Tulis is not entitled to an in-person proceeding on these motions to dismiss, on the — or on his petition for mandamus. Just a minute. I’m getting my page. So the motion for in-person proceeding filed by Mr. Tulis is denied. I find as a matter of law this is not the type of exception to the order that can be heard in person. Ms. Kleinfelter, as the prevailing party under the local rules, will you prepare that order for both respondents?
MS. KLEINFELTER: I’ll be glad to, Your Honor.
THE COURT: All right. Now, let me get to a second part of the motion. While I determine as a matter of law that Mr. Tulis is not entitled to an in-person proceeding on these motions to dismiss his petition for mandamus, I understand that you could make an oral motion — and you may be doing that today — for an in-person proceeding that could be set in a time frame when the suspension order is lifted, which would be after January 29th. Mr. Tulis, do you want to postpone this to a time when it can be in person, or do you want to go forward today telephonically?
Judge tells relator to shut up
MR. TULIS: I, I favor strongly that we go forward telephonically, Your Honor, because that is a preemptory writ 101 days after having been filed. So, my expectation was that it be handled in 15 days, but I do not want to delay anything. I’m ready to proceed.
THE COURT: All right. Thank you. All right. Ms. Milling, will you prepare that order, that the court offered to set this for an in-person hearing after the suspension order’s deadline expired but Mr. Tulis determined to go forward today telephonically?
MS. MILLING: I will, Your Honor.
THE COURT: All right. Now we’re going to hear the business at hand, which is the two motions to dismiss. Ms. Kleinfelter, the governor filed his first, so I’ll allow you to argue your motion, ma’am.
MS. KLEINFELTER: Thank you, Your Honor. And yes, we filed that motion. And so the court’s had our motion and our memorandum for some time, and so I’m not going to —
MR. TULIS: I object, Your Honor. I object.
THE COURT: Sir —
MR. TULIS: Your Honor, I object.
THE COURT: Mr. Tulis, I’m going to listen to this objection and then I’m going to tell you, you cannot continue to interrupt people. We have a certain order. You will be heard in full, but —
MR. TULIS: Well, I’m —
THE COURT: — each person gets to go at their turn.
MR. TULIS: Your Honor, let me ask a question, please. I’m — I have two motions to strike. Why is not the strike heard first, please?
Fleenor puts relator’s strikes 2nd, not st
THE COURT: Because it’s a response to the motion to dismiss. It was — it’s a response. It was filed subsequent. You will be heard on that.
MR. TULIS: All right. I have a second objection, Your Honor. And I object, I object that we’re hearing from Mrs. Kleinfelter and Mrs. Milling at all, because equity principles, whether fraud or notice or good faith or clean hands or other appropriate things such as due process require, Your Honor, that the respondent hasn’t earned the right to object or make any further statement in the action for mandamus relief that relator filed in answer — in absence of an answer to the admitted frauds in this case. We’ve had fraud in the record 101 days. They can’t speak unless they address it, Your Honor. That’s why I object to hearing either of these two parties.
THE COURT: All right. The objection is overruled. Ms. Kleinfelter, you may argue the motion to dismiss.
MR. TULIS: On what grounds?
THE COURT: That I’ve already ruled on — you’re relitigating the same issues. We’re getting to the merits of your case now.
MR. TULIS: Well, we’re getting to procedure. Their, their motions —
THE COURT: Mr. Tulis —
MR. TULIS: — are —
THE COURT: Mr. Tulis —
MR. TULIS: — (unreportable crosstalk) Your Honor.
THE COURT: Mr. Tulis, do not interrupt again. Ms. Kleinfelter, you may argue the motion.
Gov. Lee says has no duty
MS. KLEINFELTER: Thank you, Your Honor. So, we’ve raised a number of different grounds in our motion, Your Honor, as to why the petition for writ of mandamus should be dismissed. Some go to the issue of subject matter jurisdiction and some go to the failure to state a claim. With respect to the subject matter jurisdiction argument, Your Honor, the argument there is is that Governor Lee can only — when he has been sued in his official capacity he can only be sued in Davidson County. And we’ve cited — this is a matter under — both under the — when you’re suing the governor in his official capacity, that is essentially a suit against the State of Tennessee. The Tennessee Constitution mandates that the state can only be sued where the General Assembly has directed.
And the General Assembly has directed that with respect to state officials, in particular here we have the governor, that state officials are to be sued in their official capacity where they are located, i.e., the seat of state government, which is Davidson County. And the courts — the Tennessee Court of Appeals and the Tennessee Supreme Court have made it clear that this is not just a matter of venue, this is a matter of subject matter jurisdiction; that — the failure to — that a suit against the governor in his official capacity outside of Davidson County is a matter of subject matter jurisdiction.
A court outside of Davidson County would not have subject matter jurisdiction over that claim. And so for that reason, Your Honor, that reason alone, the petition against Governor Lee in his official capacity should be dismissed. With respect to the petition against Governor Lee in his individual capacity, Your Honor, it states — the petition states that it is against the governor in his official — in his individual capacity, yet the petition contains absolutely no allegations of any actions that the governor has taken in his personal capacity, and seeks no relief against him in his personal capacity. Instead, it only refers to actions that the governor could have taken or, or actions that the petitioner believes that the governor should have taken in his capacity as the governor, not as a private citizen.
And therefore, Your Honor, we would submit that the petition fails to state a claim against the governor in his individual capacity. And, of course, we — to the extent that the court could construe the petition as asserting a claim against the governor in his individual capacity, then, of course, we’re back to the venue issue. At that point venue against the governor would be inappropriate in Hamilton County because the governor does not reside nor cannot be found in his individual capacity in Hamilton County, and therefore under T.C.A. 20-4-101(a) venue would be inappropriate. So, those are just sort of the preliminary grounds as to why the petition should be dismissed, Your Honor.
Getting to the substance of the petition for a writ of mandamus, here the petition simply fails to state a claim. The caselaw is very clear what a petitioner must establish in order to seek a writ of mandamus, because it is a — it is a form of relief that the courts have said will only lie to enforce a ministerial act or duty, it does not control — it will not act to control a legislative or discretionary duty. And in order to be able to ask for and seek mandamus, a plaintiff must establish that they have — that their right to relief is clearly established, and, two, that the defendant has a clear duty to perform the act at issue, and, three, that there’s no other plain, adequate and complete method of obtaining the relief.
And even where there is a clear legal right established, the Tennessee Supreme Court has held that the issuance of a writ of mandamus is still within the trial court’s discretion. What we have here, Your Honor, are allegations that the petitioner — the petitioner alleges that the governor has failed to perform duties imposed by Tennessee Code Annotated 68-5-104 and seeks a writ directing the governor to, quote, faithfully follow the law and, quote, to keep accurate records. And we’ve cited numerous paragraphs in the petition where that relief — that those allegations are asserted and that relief is sought.
But, Your Honor, when you look at the statute in question, 68-2-10 — 68-5-104, that statute doesn’t even mention the governor. It contains no reference to the governor, any duty of the governor, any action that the governor is supposed to take.
Instead, it speaks to local health authorities and the authority of local health authorities, in their discretion, to take action to quarantine individuals. But it contains nothing in there that, one, establishes a clear right of relief in the petitioner, and, two, that imposes any duty on the governor, much less a clear duty on the governor to take any action. And for those reasons, Your Honor, the petition on its face fails to state a claim for a writ of mandamus and should be dismissed. And we cited a recent case out of the Tennessee Court of Appeals in which the Court of Appeals upheld the dismissal of a petition for a writ of mandamus, in which that petition failed on its face to establish a clear right of relief in the petitioner and a clear duty that was imposed upon — in this instance the petitioner was seeking to impose a duty — a writ of mandamus on the General Assembly, on both the — both houses of the General Assembly.
That is the same situation that we have here, Your Honor. The petition simply on its face is deficient and should be dismissed with respect to requesting mandamus relief. Now, the petition also appears, Your Honor, it’s not clear but it appears to also be seeking some sort of declaratory and/or injunctive relief, in that it asks the court to declare that the governor has been acting outside the scope of his lawful authority, and to set aside any and all orders or decrees imposed relative to COVID-19, Your Honor. And in that instance, this is a situation where the plaintiff lacks the standing to seek that declaratory and injunctive relief. And we’ve, we’ve thoroughly briefed this in our response — I mean in our motion, Your Honor. But bottom line here is is that in order to have standing to seek that kind of relief, the plaintiff has to allege a concrete and particularized injury that is — there’s the three elements, Your Honor: It has to be a concrete, particularized injury; it has to be shown that it was fairly traceable to the conduct of the adverse party, in this instance it would be the governor; and that it’s capable of being redressed by a favorable decision of the court.
The primary injury here, Your Honor, that the petition alleges is that the governor is not following the laws, he’s not following the laws the way the petitioner believes that the governor should be following the laws; in particular, he’s not complying with 68-5-104. But that’s an injury, Your Honor, that is common to all the citizens of the state of Tennessee, not just the petitioner.
And in fact, this — that’s a position that is repeatedly asserted and alleged by the petitioner in his petition. Throughout the petition he alleges that the respondents have harmed the relator and fellow Tennesseeans; that the plaintiff and the State of Tennessee are being irreparably injured; the pretense of the respondents jeopardizes everyone in the state of Tennessee. And in particular, he specifically asserts that “The Constitution and the laws of the state of Tennessee, such as Tennessee Code Annotated 68-5-104, have been and are being contravened and rights granted or secured thereby are being infringed; unwarranted power exercised in an arbitrary and oppressive manner by the respondent such as to justify the interference of this honorable court to prevent wrong and oppression.”
In essence, the petitioner is alleging that the governor is not following the laws the way that he believes the governor should be following the laws. And that is not sufficient to establish standing. As the Supreme Court stated in the ACL v. Darnell case, “Standing may not be predicated upon an injury to an interest that the plaintiff shares in common with all other citizens.” And here, the petitioner’s allegation that the governor has failed to comply or to act in accordance with the constitution and state law and, in particular 68-5-104, is an injury that is shared by all citizens.
And for that reason, Your Honor, to the extent that the petition can be construed as requesting declaratory and injunctive relief in addition to the mandamus, we would request that — we submit that it should be dismissed for lack of standing. Finally, there appears to be a claim for equitable compensation, where the petitioner has asked for equitable compensation or reimbursement, indemnification — essentially a claim for damages against the governor.
And, of course, Your Honor, when the governor is being sued in his official capacity, that is, again as I said earlier, a lawsuit against the State of Tennessee, and any claim for damages against the State of Tennessee or an official in their official capacity is barred by sovereign immunity. And clearly sovereign immunity applies here, as we have set out in our response. So, for all of those reasons, Your Honor, we would respectfully request that the motion to dismiss the petition be granted for lack of subject matter jurisdiction and for failure to state a claim. And unless the court has any questions, that’s, that’s essentially it.
THE COURT: All right. Thank you. Now, Mr. Tulis, this is your time to respond, argue your motion to strike, object, whatever you want to do. Now is your — you have the floor, sir.
No discretion apart from law
MR. TULIS: Yes, Your Honor. Thank you. For the record for any appeal, consistent with the factual evidence in the petition, notwithstanding the boilerplate offered by both respondents, or inadequate, order denying the motion to strike respondent’s motion to dismiss for continuing fraud, which, among other things, the challenged order, consequent with granting, if justice is to be done, needed to provide notice to show how the petition was insufficient; and that this court, contrary to its actions to date, provide the state on relation with an opportunity to amend any particularized inadequacy, particularized inadequacy; then that relator refused or failed or could not amend, and to provide foundation for how this court can continue to allow fraud to infiltrate, subsist and be subsidized in chancery and tolerated by equity principles. That despite the vast discretionary authority, Your Honor, granted an honorable court, these same requirements apply equally to the purported motions to dismiss, and this court is required to provide its valid foundation and notice for due process consideration that ultimately justice be done. Dismissal upon the otherwise inadequate, if not frivolous, motions of the respondent, in admitted fraud and breach of duty causing, with evidence of record, particularized irreparable harm to relator and — or the state of Tennessee on relation, is unwarranted and constitutionally invalid against the relators’ rights to remedy for the particularized harm — again, particularized harm — done to him by respondent in any capacity. The motion to dismiss is improper, being the fraud now admitted by respondents in choosing this route, the procedural route, has not been answered pursuant to equity principles, and the court is duty bound to summarily and immediately issue the writ of mandamus; that the respondent is compelled to obey the law and stop committing, or by omission, the irreparable harm, Your Honor, evidenced in the adequate petition, no lawful record existing to the contrary. And so just, just briefly in introduction, I demand that justice be done in favor of the State of Tennessee on relation immediately, Your Honor.
And now to the specifics of my, my motion to strike Mrs. Kleinfelter’s labors. It’s improper. We are 101 days into an admitted violation of 68-5-104. That is a fraud. Equity disallows fraud, it disallows breach of trust, it disallows oppression and violation of oath to stand unaddressed in this court.
Actions by the respondent personally are addressed because his, his health security show in defiance of the law is done, I would think, in his personal capacity under color of law, not in his office. His office has no authority to ignore the statute and to declare a state of emergency. The motion to dismiss the State of Tennessee’s claims on relation with prejudice is not particularized. It is not particularized, Your Honor. It does not answer to the fraud. And the motion that you have read and you’ve heard discussed now is from one who has no standing to argue anything. With unclean hands, admitting fraud, violating oath, there’s no right, no right of having law and notice not shine the light upon it that this case is doing. We are in a state of breach of public trust. There is no lawful title by respondent Lee before this court for 101 days. There’s no title, either, to the property of the people whom he has injured. There is no lawful excuse.
And it’s not a matter of discretion that we’re dealing with here, as we’ll discuss in a minute, I hope. There’s no lawful excuse, no discretion, in default in reply to his, his oath. He is 100 percent in the red. And if the court lets stand this motion, I would like to have an answer in writing as to what — and if I do — if this motion survives in any way, Judge Fleenor, I would like at least 21 days to answer it. Continuing. The motion that I filed with the court is for, in the alternative, misjoinder. Dismissal is not proper, especially the bad, the bad faith claim that it be done with prejudice. The proper handling of this case, if Chancellor Fleenor wants to hear this alternative petition, is misjoinder. If the court lacks jurisdiction, as Mrs. Kleinfelter says, then Tennessee Code Annotated 16-1-116 is the misjoinder rule. It’s also Rule 21. The proper handling of the Lee portion of this petition for writ of mandamus would be transfer. And that — and she is arguing a venue privilege that deals with commissioners. But it seems that the courts would — that it’s being argued that the courts hold that these rules on commissioners having — being sued in Davidson County apply to the governor, though they’re not — there are no governor cases that I’m aware of. And if it seems to apply to respondent Lee, then I have a right to pursue this case and justice in Davidson County. So what I would say, Your Honor, that, that if there is no subject matter jurisdiction for the propriety of my claims against him here in Hamilton County, that it be by transfer. And, Your Honor, if Lee is transferred, I would insist on the right in Davidson County to get the date of the filing there as of October the 2nd, not, not the date of the transfer. And that’s pursuant again to 16-1-116. So, that, that is the — that is my argument for dismissal. The case, in sum, Your Honor, if fraud is not addressed in a court of equity, which is chancery’s great, great jurisdiction, great Godly power, then these procedural claims are improper and this motion by Mrs. Kleinfelter should be stricken, Your Honor. Thank you.
THE COURT: All right. As the moving party, Ms. Kleinfelter, you get the last word, if you so choose. Do you need to respond? Ms. Kleinfelter, do you have a reply to —
MS. KLEINFELTER: No, Your Honor. I’m sorry.I had it on mute.
THE COURT: I appreciate that. It makes –it takes away with the background noise that way. All right. The Court —
MS. KLEINFELTER: No, Your Honor, I don’t have any response to make. I think our motion and the brief in support and argument fully address all the issues, unless the court has any questions.
THE COURT: I have no questions. Thank you.
MS. KLEINFELTER: Thank you, Your Honor.
THE COURT: All right. The court is going to take that matter under advisement and issue a written opinion.Now I’m going to hear the motion to dismiss of Ms. Barnes. Ms. Milling, this is your motion. You may argue.
Barnes says not subject to law
MS. MILLING: Thank you, Your Honor. My motion is obviously very similar to Governor Lee’s — or Ms. Barnes’ motion is very similar to Governor Lee’s, with a distinction; and that is, of course, that Ms. Barnes is situated in Hamilton County and is not the governor of the state, so certain things don’t apply to her that apply to him. However, relative to the lack of standing, the petitioner’s lack of standing, because of a non-particularized injury the argument is the same. The petitioner has alleged that he shares in common with the rest of the citizens of the state of Tennessee the same injury.
That, of course, is — that is an indispensable element, pursuant to American Civil Liberties Union of Tennessee v. Darnell. And, of course, lack of that indispensable element defeats his request for a writ of mandamus. Also, in particular with relation to Ms. Barnes as it applies to 68-5-104, which is the quarantine statute, the petitioner references this repeatedly relative to the mask directive. Well, in this case, not only does the lack of a particularized injury come into frame, but whether or not the petitioner has an individualized injury based on this statute also comes into play. He has neither — he has not alleged such an injury, nor has he alleged that personally the provisions of 68-5-104 have been applied to him relative to quarantine. The — and regarding a writ of mandamus as it being an extraordinary form of relief, the — and I am quoting from my brief here. It says: “The law of mandamus in Tennessee is well-settled. State ex rel. Weaver v. Ayres, 756 S.W.2d 217, 220, (Tenn. 1988). Mandamus will only lie to enforce a ministerial act or duty, and will not lie to control a legislative or discretionary duty.” In this case we have — understandably, the petitioner does not believe it to be true, but we have before us a pandemic where we have thousands of people being infected — or hundreds of thousands of people across the country being infected, thousands in the state of Tennessee, and thousands of people in the state of Tennessee have died. It is an undertaking that has not occurred — at least since I have been in the legal field, certainly I don’t believe in my lifetime, that has occurred to this degree. And the discretion to issue a mask directive, that most certainly is discretionary and falls under this, meaning that a mandamus does not lie to address this issue.
As Ms. Kleinfelter noted, the petitioner also appears to request damages. And, of course, damages, to the extent that he’s requesting damages from Ms. Barnes in her official capacity, that is actually a request for damages by Hamilton County. That falls under the auspices of the Tennessee Government Liability Act, which is not, which is not a matter that would be heard in this court. Likewise, as to Governor Lee, he has asserted absolutely nothing about that — within his petition that indicates that Ms. Barnes took any actions within her individual capacity whatsoever, making dismissal as to her as an individual appropriate. And I will wait for Mr. Tulis’ response for anything else, Your Honor. Thank you.
THE COURT: All right. Mr. Tulis, you may argue your motion to strike, you may argue an objection, you may argue in response. Whatever you choose to do.
MR. TULIS: Yes, ma’am. Just a moment.
Phone access blocked
THE COURT: Okay. Take your time.
UNIDENTIFIED SPEAKER: May I speak as a participant, just quickly?
THE COURT: No, ma’am.
UNIDENTIFIED SPEAKER: People are trying to get in and they’re not able to. They say it’s full.
THE COURT: All right. It may be full, just like my courtroom gets full too. And when it gets to capacity we can’t let other people in. Thank you. But I appreciate you letting us know that there are participants on the line who are in the public.
MR. TULIS: Just half a moment more, please, Your Honor.
THE COURT: Certainly.
THE REPORTER: Your Honor, this is Sheila Wilson, the court reporter. May I ask for her honor to, I suppose, let me know who the person was who spoke just a moment ago, since we’re not on camera?
MS. HEDGECOCK: Jessica Hedgecock.
THE COURT: That’s up to you, ma’am, if you want to address that or not. I’m not going to require you to identify yourself. But thank you for asking me, Ms. Wilson. I understand that. But they don’t have to identify themselves, because I’m not letting them address the court because this is only argument by the lawyers representing the parties in the case.
THE REPORTER: Thank you, ma’am.
MR. TULIS: All right. Yes, Your Honor.
Bid to strike 2 motions
THE COURT: Okay, Mr. Tulis.
MR. TULIS: In my, in my argument to strike the Barnes motion for dismissal and the brief attached, I assert again that it’s an improper motion, pretending to have a concern for procedure when the fraud that is in the record and not rebutted, which is disobedience of 68-5-104, is unaddressed, the fraud of disobedience to black letter law that applies to everybody, from the governor on down — everybody involved in health and public health is bound by that law. That law, in sum, is not, is not a matter of discretion. And so what I’d like to do, Your Honor, is, in this discussion about the striking the Barnes motion, is to, is to defend the petition as sufficient. Because we’re hearing here that the petition is improperly using mandamus, that mandamus is not a remedy and that I don’t have standing. So these are, these are all issues that are appropriate in a discussion about the Barnes brief and motion, which — and so I — and I would suggest, Your Honor, that the points — since these are similar defenses by two parties, that the — that you understand my — while my words are directed upon her motion, they really are directed to both respondents together. But, but since this is an oral presentation, there may be some lack of specificity. But, again, Your Honor, I demand that her motion be stricken as improper because it fails to account for fraud. And that’s a violation of 68-5-104. That’s not allowed in equity, it’s not allowed to have the party with a duty — a known, clear, legal duty to obey.
And here we have the health administrator in Tennessee ignoring and having no proof of compliance of this statute which has about five demands upon her and her office. This, this suit was filed when I determined, as a fact, that she had not one — once looked at this law, not once had any discussions about it, there are no reports under it, not a single item of evidence that she is obedient to this law, the key health law, the quarantine epidemic law in Tennessee, ignored by the respondent Barnes.
And so that is fraud, that is deception, that is damage, and we are — we are all damaged. And I’m specifically damaged as well, and that will go to my discussion on standing, Your Honor. So what we have here with her brief is a demurrer and an evasion. A demurrer — we don’t have demurrers in Tennessee law, but that’s what this is, and it is an evasion for now 101 days. To say that Mrs. Barnes is exercising discretion is simply frivolous. It is a frivolous argument. The motion is under color of a proper motion, and it is using this court — with each day that passes without a ruling for mandamus, it is, it is asking and demanding the court perpetuate the fraud of this whole top-down solution to the year’s virus of the, of the — I object to the court not demanding obedience immediately to 68-5-104 or evidence of coming into compliance.
The evidence is, Your Honor, that I, I insist that you ask for that they are in the process of obeying or they have plans to obey. Maybe starting tomorrow, Your Honor, that this, this official plans to start looking at the law to see what it has in there for her to do.
Because as I’m asserting, I have a due process right in her compliance of the statute. My due process right, as evidenced in my affidavit of damages, my — with my five points, those damages came to me because she ignored her duty. That, that statute is, figuratively speaking, a complexity thicket. And she has to go into that thicket and meet all of its obligations before she do anything. That statute is binding upon her. There is no discretion. As I’ll get to and talk about mandamus.
There is no discretion, Your Honor, apart from obedience.
Discretion does not operate contravening black letter law, in the health law, the health statute, Title 58, binding a woman whose whole life as a nurse and a local official has been under that statute. She knows that statute very well. And I would say that she’s — in her motion she is not denying fraud and she is not — she’s not saying I’m misperceiving the job or that I’m misreading. There is some suggestion that somehow I’ve just misread it, somehow this law — I’m applying it and it really somehow doesn’t apply to her. And yet, and yet Mrs. Barnes accepts my affidavit of complaint, the petition, of 212 paragraphs, and she accepts — without rebuttal, without putting me on the stand about my injuries, she accepts the affidavit. And that’s, that’s — in chancery, there need not be — there need not be testimony in this case, because the damages are particular and personal to me. And so the petition, Your Honor, is sufficient.
That is my main point here. It is made in good faith. It accurately portrays the law, the duty and the obligation of this, of this official. It is proof of disobedience of legislative enactment. The people, through the General Assembly, passed this law, and she is in stark disobedience of the people’s will through statute which applies to her. And my case, my claims are, I would say, a brilliant light on corruption, fraud, roaches feeding on a stinking cancerous tumor dragging across the calendar, of 334 days as of today, a rolling stock of constitutional violations and arbitrary and capricious acts by the boxcar, by the boxcar. The Constitution is being violated multiple times.
I’m leaving those points aside because I’m looking — I’m firing the people’s tracer bullets, Your Honor, at the locomotive pulling this [rolling] stock, and that’s this law and this official denying obedience and duty to this law. In her duty to obey this law, petitioner and the state on relation has their due process protections. We have protections in her duty. And I, as a representative of the public, in Tennessee and in Chattanooga and Hamilton County, I have a right and — I have, I have a claim in equity, in equity, upon Mrs. Barnes’ performance. I have a right, Your Honor, I have title, I have interest and equity to know also from this court any inadequacy so that I can exercise my right to amend my petition.
And now as to the propriety of mandamus, this case is justiciable under mandamus and the actions sought. I have a distinct injury. There’s no rebuttal. There is a causal connection between the actions of the health director in Hamilton County and my injuries, dealing with the economy, the economic damages, and also the false threats of arrest. Redressability, that is very clearly in my favor as well. Mandamus, which is a one-sentence order directing her to obey the law, is redress. That solves my problem, that satisfies the State of Tennessee. Again, it is discretionary. If you look at Tusant v. Memphis, 2001, a very useful discussion, Your Honor, about mandamus. You can’t use it to force a course of discretionary power. It can’t be applied upon exercises of judgment, as these good attorneys have said. It’s not enforceable for an act, quote, done by an official who has lawful authority to determine whether or not he will perform the act. You can’t use mandamus to control an official judgment or discretion.
Mandamus does not lie where the right is, quote, doubtful, in Tusant v. Memphis. And also, you can’t use mandamus in, quote, any discretion concerning the doing of an act. But, but mandamus must lie to enforce an official duty as defined in law. It is a purely ministerial act. It is a summary — summary remedy, Tusant says. It is extraordinary — quote, extraordinary in its nature when the right has been clearly established. And I say I have a clearly established right in her duty. It is a command to act or obey. It is not controlling discretion. Discretion is within obedience. That’s my main position here, is discretion is not apart from and in contravening obedience to the statute, Your Honor. It is within, within the statute, not apart or against it. Just a moment ago, please.
THE COURT: Sure.
MR. TULIS: I’m not done. I’m not done.
THE COURT: Okay.
Mandamus best remedy
MR. TULIS: So, Tusant, quoted by the other side, rightly discusses the power of mandamus and its, and its obvious limits, which I’ve researched prior to coming before this court. Now, as far as — again, as far as the propriety of using mandamus, it is, it is justiciable, as I was saying. I have no other remedy. And in equity, when I’m being damaged I go to the remedy that serves, and that is mandamus. I am not asking, Your Honor, for anything that’s shocking or weird or freaky or bizarre. I’m asking for, a minimum, a minimum, in one sentence no doubt it could be done, that, that — the minimum is that Mrs. Barnes and Governor Lee obey the wholesome and good law and serve the public health. And in the interest of judicial economy, I would say mandamus is a great thing to get in your court. It may interfere with your routine child custody, probate and contract cases, Your Honor, but because it’s preemptory it throws all your, all your dockets out of way for 15 days or so but then it’s gone, it’s gone. But that hasn’t happened. And I am — I find this a very dolorous circumstance. Mandamus, Chancellor Fleenor, exists exactly for this case. This case is a perfect mandamus case. And Barnes and Lee don’t say that mandamus won’t solve the problem regarding their duty and my right. They’re not saying it doesn’t work. And they don’t object that my demand won’t stop irreparable harm. My demand will stop irreparable harm.
And this, Your Honor, empowers you and chancery court to bring and restore the status quo ante of our rights respective. And I would say that, that regarding — that your, your authority and your — as Gibson’s Suits in Chancery points out — the 1955 edition, I believe I have, that chancery handles in wholes and not in halves. And I, I, I want to make this opportunity to demand that the writ issue.
And so, finally, Your Honor, finally, this suit is upon two respondents, Mrs. Barnes being the first one in this, in this part of our hearing. They are acting outside the law, they’re acting under color of law, either in their personal capacity or in somehow miscreant use of their office. I am not saying that the state has done anything unconstitutional. I’m not saying anything about the state. I am the state in this case. I represent the State of Tennessee. I’m the relator. I’m not saying that any law is unconstitutional. I’m not attacking any law and I’m not attacking the state. I am the state. Rather, Your Honor, rather, the State of Tennessee on relation says that Mrs. Barnes has violated the sovereign state’s legislative enactment.
The state does have sovereignty. It cannot be sued. And Mrs. Barnes has violated the sovereign state’s legislative enactments through its people. And that, Your Honor, is fraud. That, Your Honor, is irreparable harm. And they are continuing with the court’s leave. With each day that there’s no mandamus, the one sentence that says “obey the law,” we have irreparable harm. I’m defending the law. Your Honor, I’m defending the law. The good, honest government services, it requires and it invites law and order, duty and honor, and representative constitutional government. I am personally injured. There has been no rebuttal by Mrs. Barnes on my injuries. She — if she wants to put me on the stand about my injuries, she can do that, but I’ve got it all right there, five, five areas of damage. And the fact that we have many people damaged is a very dangerous position to take, Your Honor, and here’s why — one moment. The case Spokeo, Inc. v Robins, 136 S.Ct. 1540, 194, that’s a 2016 case, it says that “The fact that an injury may be suffered by a large number of people does not of itself make that injury a nonjusticiable generalized grievance” under the requirement for Article III standing that the plaintiff suffer a particularized injury. There is particularized injury.
And in this boilerplate law work that these two lawyers have done, they’re pretending that just because I represent the people as a whole and speak about them lovingly and caringly as suffering like me that suddenly I don’t have a damage. No, I have specific damages. And everybody, everybody who’s listening to this hearing and everybody else in this state are suffering individually in different ways. Just because we have infamy [writ] large doesn’t mean we don’t have infamy. And I am specifically damaged and personally damaged. And they have a duty, Mrs. Barnes has a duty, Your Honor, that implies my right of relief today, my right of relief today, for the writ of mandamus. And I think — thank you, Your Honor. I think that covers my motion to strike.
THE COURT: Okay. Mr. Tulis, I have one question. Could you give me the cite of that Supreme Court case again, sir?
MR. TULIS: Yes, ma’am. It’s Spokeo, S-p-o-k-e-o, v. Robins, R-o-b-i-n-s.
THE COURT: All right.
MR. TULIS: And it’s 136 S.Ct. 1540, 194.
Barnes defends rejection of law
THE COURT: All right. Thank you. I appreciate that. All right. Ms. Milling, would you like to reply on behalf of your client? Ms. Milling, did you mute your mic? Because we can’t hear you.
MS. MILLING: I did, Your Honor. I did. I would like to very briefly respond. The petitioner, relative to addressing his motion to strike, says that the motion to dismiss should be stricken because it is improper because it did not address the factual claims in his — in the petition. And it would appear that the petitioner misunderstands the purpose of a Rule 12 motion to dismiss, and that is to address whether or not a petition or a complaint is valid on its face. And it’s not required to address the factual content. That is what we have both done here.
So to the extent that the petitioner asserts that Ms. Barnes is in default, that is incorrect, because a motion to dismiss is a proper responsive pleading and acts in that effect — in that manner.
As far as his damages, attempting to now assert it as a particularized injury, I would assert that on the face of the complaint he has drawn his injuries as to be common with every citizen of the state of Tennessee. And, again, reiterate the mask directive, what he — he brings this matter under the quarantine statute. A mask directive and a quarantine are two very distinct things. And he has brought this under the auspices of the quarantine statute, which is not how the mask mandate was brought — or the mask directive, rather. And I have nothing further, Your Honor.
THE COURT: All right. Thank you.
MR. TULIS: Your Honor —
THE COURT: Yes.
MR. TULIS: I have more business, Your Honor.
THE COURT: All right. Let me talk — I will let you get to it. Let me say this: I’m going to take this matter under advisement and issue a written opinion on this motion to dismiss and motion to strike. All right. Now, Mr. Tulis, what’s your other business?
Tulis defies bid to make him corporation
MR. TULIS: Yes, ma’am — or yes, Your Honor. There are two orders — two draft orders against which I have written a motion of objection, and it is regarding the altering and amending of these orders. And I’m concerned in the way that I’m being treated by the respondents in this case. And their, their drafts, their legal work and these draft motions, Your Honor, that you have already signed are — that was pro confesso motion denial and that was also default motion — ruling on default denying my motions. In those — there is a trespass on this case. This is a case of equity. And the respondents pretends that it is a case at law. They’ve restyled the case. They’ve effectively trespassed on my case, as State of Tennessee on relation. They’ve seized my case and they’ve defamed me. And they’ve defamed me on these — just a moment — as to my, as to my status as a man aggrieved. I’m a man aggrieved in this case, and they are pretending that I am something, something less. And this is holding me in contempt. They are defaming me. They are assassinating my character. They are abusing equity principles by restyling this case as one seeking damages. That’s not — I’m not seeking damages. My reference is — to compensation is under equity. You, Your Honor, have authority in equity to make things right. That’s what you’re — you’re not about damages, you’re about setting things straight. If there has to be some kind of compensation, well, that’s entirely up to you. And my motion, my petition was framed that way, as I point out.
And I want these — I would like you to direct these two attorneys to halt their acts making this a fictitious matter. They are, they are fictionalizing the case. They’re pretending that I’m seeking damages. They’re pretending that I’m a bankrupt corporation. They’re, they’re styling me — they’re not referring to parties in the body of their type as respondents and me the relator, they’re “petitioner.” And the whole, the whole brief refers to “Governor Lee,” the whole brief refers to “Mrs. Barnes.” That also doesn’t seem proper. Your Honor, this, this is not a law court, this is a court in equity. And, and I demand also, I demand also — okay. I’m sorry. Let me finish. The problem is that I do not have a corporate capacity. I’m not involved in any legal fiction, Your Honor. I’d like that to be part of the record. I’m — it’s fair to say I’m sui juris and not pro se. And I’m a man aggrieved. I’m a private man, acting in my private capacity. I’m a soul wrapped in a body, as C.S. Lewis said.
And I’m on the land. I’m on the land. And to address this problem, Your Honor, of these lawyers reducing me and reducing my capacity into a bankrupt corporation, I, I enclosed in the exhibits my birth certificate in case there’s any question about how my name is spelled. My name is not spelled, all capital David, all capital Jonathan, and all capital Tulis. It’s capital D, small avid, and capital J and small onathan, and capital T and lowercase ulis. And that, that is the proper way. And they can’t — and I’m demanding that these people be required to not recast this case and recast me to reduce my, my standing. They are acting contemptive — contemptuously of me. And I demand an end of this, this, this trespass, this reimaging — as one of my arguments has in writing, reimaging my case to mislead this court. Could you please issue a directive and corrective, Your Honor?
THE COURT: I don’t understand why — you said your name wasn’t with all caps? I’m just not following your argument, sir.
MR. TULIS: Well, the all capital name is for corporations and people acting in a commercial capacity. I’m not acting in a commercial capacity, Your Honor, I’m acting as a man, an aggrieved man. And it’s not just a matter of the type — the capital letter got stuck on a typewriter. There’s a legal reason that people are capitalized that way. Your, your tax forms, your banking forms, all commercial instruments are usually capital letters, denoting the use that that person is applying to himself. He is — when you’re acting in commerce, under contract or as a debtor, that brings that change in the styling of your name. Styling is not an irrelevant and trivial matter, Your Honor. And that’s why my birth certificate is in the record so that the other parties will recognize me as a man. I’m a man, and I’m not in any capacity corporate and not under any legal fiction, Your Honor. Thank you.
MS. KLEINFELTER: Your Honor, this is Ms. Kleinfelter with the Attorney General’s Office. If I can just briefly respond. As I understand it, I think the petitioner’s complaint is with respect to the style of the pleadings, in which I believe both Ms. Milling and I have styled it State of Tennessee, ex rel. David Jonathan Tulis, in all capitals.
THE COURT: Oh.
MS. KLEINFELTER: And we have done the same with respect to Bill Lee and Rebekah Barnes, we have placed that all in capitals, which is customary in styling the headings on a pleading, a complaint, a motion, whatever is being filed with the court. But, Your Honor, I certainly have no objection. I mean, it’s certainly not intended to reflect that Mr. Tulis was a corporation. If he was a corporation, it would require me to have put “Inc.” after his name, for that to demonstrate that he was a corporation. But I certainly have no objection, that if he wants me to style it State of Tennessee ex rel. David Jonathan Tulis and not put that all in caps, I’m certainly glad to do so.
MR. TULIS: And what about Mrs. Milling? Thank you.
MS. MILLING: Your Honor, it does not matter to me one way or the order — one way or the other. I will accept your directive, whatever it is. As Ms. Kleinfelter pointed out, it is customary. I don’t think I have a case in here that I have not used all caps in a heading on a lawsuit. But whatever your directive is is fine, Your Honor.
THE COURT: Well, the court styles the case in all caps for everything. And my order entered — I just looked back at my order entered December 8th, 2020, and that’s the way we styled it. It means nothing. It’s just a formal pleading. Now, I’m going to get to the substance of your motion to object to the proposed December 20, 2020 — excuse me, December 2nd, 2020 hearing order. What the court discerns is this is in effect a Rule 59 motion.
The legal standard for determining a Rule 59 motion to alter or amend is found in the case of Vaccarella v. Vaccarella, 49 S.W.3d 307 (Tenn. Ct. App 2001), which states that “These motions ‘may be granted when the controlling law changes before a judgment becomes final, when previously unavailable evidence becomes available, or when, for reasons, a judgment should be amended to correct a clear error of law or to prevent injustice. They should not, however, be granted if they are simply seeking to relitigate matters that have already been adjudicated.'” What the court finds is that Mr. Tulis’ motions to object to the orders are simply relitigating matters that were already adjudicated. There is no new law, there was no new facts, and the motions to — and it’s not to correct a clear error of law or prevent injustice. If that’s something you need to take up on appeal, but the Rule 59 motion to object to the December 2nd, 2020 hearing order is denied. Now, let me see, I will have the — Ms. Kleinfelter, can you prepare that order, as the prevailing party under our local rules?
MS. KLEINFELTER: Yes, ma’am.
THE COURT: All right. With nothing further to come before the court, that will conclude this hearing. And you will get my written order on these two — on what we heard today.
MS. MILLING: Your Honor, I have a question very quickly.
THE COURT: Okay.
MS. MILLING: My understanding was that the petitioner’s motion relative to these orders addressed both orders, the one as to Ms. Barnes and the one as to Ms. (sic) Lee.
THE COURT: Okay.
MS. MILLING: Do you want separate orders on those, or do you want Ms. Kleinfelter to wrap that all into one order?
THE COURT: Well, I appreciate you bringing that up, because I was trying to get back through my file here to see if I had done two separate orders. Did I do two separate orders?
MS. MILLING: You did, Your Honor.
THE COURT: All right. Then I would like Ms. Barnes to address hers separately.
MS. MILLING: Absolutely, Your Honor.
THE COURT: I just could not get back through the file quick enough. All right.
MS. MILLING: Thank you, Your Honor.
MS. KLEINFELTER: Your Honor, this is Ms. Kleinfelter again. And I just have one additional
THE COURT: Yes.
MS. KLEINFELTER: And that is, that all future filings by Mr. Tulis, if he could serve those filings on me instead of the governor, since I have now appeared as counsel of record for the governor. As it is, he has been sending those filings to the governor’s office, and then it takes several days for those to make their way over to my office.
THE COURT: Yes. That would be appropriate. Mr. Tulis, you have to serve on the counsel. And that, that just helps you, sir, because that gets your motions attention a lot quicker addressed. And she’s entered an appearance. And the —
MR. TULIS: Will you accept that, Your Honor? You accept that? There’s no notice of appearance from her. And you accept that, so I’ll accept it too.
THE COURT: Well, yes, sir, she did, by filing a responsive pleading. So —
MR. TULIS: Yes, Your Honor.
THE COURT: You have that address on the order?
MR. TULIS: Yes, I sure do. Yes, Your Honor, I sure do. And I will send —
THE COURT: All right.
MR. TULIS: — all further correspondence to her. Understood.
THE COURT: Ms. Kleinfelter, why don’t you just give your — where you want this sent, on the record right now.
MS. KLEINFELTER: It is to Janet Kleinfelter, Office of Tennessee Attorney General, Post Office Box 5 20207, Nashville, Tennessee 37202.
THE COURT: Thank you.
MS. KLEINFELTER: Thank you, Your Honor.
THE COURT: All right. This concludes the telephonic hearing. My very best wishes for you-all to stay well.
MS. KLEINFELTER: Thank you, Your Honor.
MS. MILLING: Thank you, Your Honor.
MR. TULIS: Thank you, Your Honor.
HEARING CONCLUDED AT APPROXIMATELY 10:21 A.M.
Time to fight
Are there any ways left for these folks defeat you? First they tell you to put your mask on, and you do it.
Then, a government/corporate mouth-piece tells you that Bill Lee has somehow acquired “Sovereign Immunity,” and you drop to your knees with a hearty, “Yes, ma’am.”
Seems that the Chancery court is equally useless for the pursuit of Justice as all courts in the corporate state. Being another devoted to the practice of “JustUs.”
I think that the People of Tennessee would do better to put down this tyranny, by standing for themselves, and the Republic that their ancestors chartered.
“US Supreme Court held that state officials acting by ”color of law” may be held personally liable for the injuries or torts they cause and that official or sovereign immunity may not be asserted” — Scheuer v. Rhodes, 416 US 232 (1974), 94 S. Ct. 1683, 1687 (1974).
“When a state officer acts under a state law in a manner violative of the Federal Constitution, he comes into conflict with the superior authority of that Constitution, and he is in that case stripped of his official or representative character and is subjected in his person to the consequences of his individual conduct. The State has no power to impart to him any immunity from responsibility to the supreme authority of the United States.” — Warnock v Pecos County, Texas, 116 F. 3d 776 – No.96-50869 Summary Calendar. July 3, 1997
Even if we were to assume that the affidavit was made on the personal knowledge of the affiant, there is another fatal defect which would render the affidavit void: it purports to be the affidavit of the corporate defendant. It has long been the law that corporations cannot make sworn statements. Worley Bros. Granite Co. v. Haskins, 105 Ga. App. 444, 448 ( 124 S.E.2d 663); Coffee v. McCaskey Register Co., 7 Ga. App. 425, 429 ( 66 S.E. 1032).