Tuesday, February 9, 2016

For KrisAnne Hall it is Time to Swim in the Adult Pool

By Bob Ferris

KrisAnne Hall spreading her version of the US Constitution and US history.
I noticed with interest that Tea Party activist KrisAnne Hall who has been masquerading as a “constitutional attorney” will be speaking to a closed meeting at the Idaho legislature.  The image that floated through my mind when I saw this was that of a child in a wading pool fantasizing about being an Olympic swimmer.  When one is a child we permit and even encourage this type of thinking and play-acting, but we should not when the one doing it is an adult.

Adopting the appellation of “constitutional attorney” implies two things. The first is that the bearer of such a title is an acknowledged expert on the topic of the US Constitution.  In this instance that would involve writing in law reviews about the US Constitution or perhaps arguing Constitutional cases or teaching the subject at a law school.  Amazingly KrisAnne Hall has done none of these things.  Certainly she has a radio show and writes a blog as well as having a few self-published books, but in terms of actions where it really counts there is nothing…bupkis.

And since she has let her fees to the Florida Bar lapse—for whatever reason—she is no longer permitted to practice law in her current state of Florida.  This makes her different than the more than 68,000 lawyers in that state who manage to keep their bar memberships current and this calls into question her clinging to the profession she no longer apparently practices.

Now many folks might not understand the importance of all this because when KrisAnne winds up and tells them about her version of the US Constitution and the Founding Fathers it seems to feed that beast within them that would rather blame the federal government for their woes than themselves or the darker powers unleashed by Citizens United.  But those of us who work in professional realms understand why all this is problematic and dangerous.  Moreover, it is no longer trivial as we have seen one person die because he was influenced by this or similar drivel.  And this public acceptance of the obviously untrue is costing the country much in terms of fiscal and psychological outlays as well as our global reputation.

In this I think the most productive action is to point towards an exemplar.  For instance, who did the Oregon Association of Counties’ leadership go to when they were trying to sort out the specious claims of KrisAnne Hall?  The answer to that is Michael C. Blumm a much published and much cited law professor from Lewis and Clark Law School.  Professor Blumm is an acknowledged authority in this field and he did not think much about Ms. Hall’s claims as evidenced by his legal memo to the Concerned Citizens of Harney County  and his opinion piece in the Oregonian.  Professor Blumm's view on this topic are broadly supported in all but the most extreme quarters (see 1,2,3,4,5).

Certainly there is room for debate on this topic, but the debaters should be those with standing on the topic and those with enough courage to put their ideas to the test in professional publications, courtrooms or classrooms.  Ms. Hall has not done this in fact her lack of profile in this arena where she claims expertise is surprisingly nonexistent (see above).  It is surprising until you compare what she claims and how little it comports with case law and history (see Professor Blumm's legal memo above).  I guess life is easy when one never leaves the wading pool of life to play with the big dogs in your profession, but the Idaho legislature should know better and should be taken to task for sanctioning poor and unsupported scholarship.


P.S.  It is not all that tough to get into Google Scholar.  Some of us do it without even trying.


  1. li·bel ˈlībəl/Submit noun
    1. LAW a published false statement that is damaging to a person's reputation; a written defamation.

    1. Please point out the false parts of this blog post - I'm quite interested in what you have to say.

  2. Ms. Hall, If there is anything in here that is factually incorrect then please let me know immediately and I will certainly correct it. Most of this is driven by opinion which bears on the above as I believe that people who set themselves up as experts in anything on a professional level should meet certain criteria and have standing in their field of pursuit particularly when they are arguing a contrarian position as you are. My opinion on this matches that of Professor Blumm at Lewis and Clark Law School who characterized you as "A self-proclaimed constitutional lawyer who apparently reads no judicial case law, or who completely ignores it, should not inspire any citizen’s trust." Did you send a similar definition to him? I would also direct your attention to those sections of the law that deal with so-called public figures which you have set yourself up to be as the standards are higher and different. Again if any thing is factually inaccurate, please let me know.

  3. Mrs Hall do you still have an up to date license to practice or have you let it go for some reason?

  4. I am disturbed; this lady teaches workshops to sheriffs (mis)informing them about their constitutional duties -- that should not be legal. I know freedom of speech is one thing -- but she is misleading public officials in the discharge of their public duties -- N A T I O N A L L Y.

  5. ....and crickets from Ms Hall. Figures.