Ian Eppler  //  3/13/18  //  Daily Update


President Trump backed away from his proposal to raise gun purchase age limits, claiming “not much political support.” A Department of Homeland Security proposal to implement continuous automated social media monitoring of visitors and immigrants to the United States is a “Muslim ban by algorithm.” 12 consolidated lawsuits challenging the Federal Communications Commission’s repeal of net neutrality rules will be heard by the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Stormy Daniels has offered to return a $130,000 payment from President Trump made as part of a non-disclosure agreement regarding an alleged affair.

 

IMMIGRATION

The federal government’s lawsuit challenging California’s immigration laws is unlikely to succeed due to 10th Amendment protections for states, contends Ruthie Epstein at the ACLU’s blog.

California’s immigration laws should be understood as state civil rights laws rather than efforts to preempt federal immigration laws, suggests Cyrus Mehta at his eponymous blog.

A Department of Homeland Security proposal to implement continuous automated social media monitoring of visitors and immigrants to the United States is a “Muslim ban by algorithm,” argue Faiza Patel and Harsha Panduranga at Just Security.

The Department of Homeland Security is unprepared to assess the effectiveness of President Trump’s proposed border wall, reports Nick Miroff in the Washington Post.

In a filing, Department of Justice lawyers “seemed to ridicule” California’s request that the federal lawsuit challenging California’s immigration laws be transferred to San Francisco where “sanctuary city” litigation is ongoing (Politico).

 

JUSTICE & SAFETY

President Trump backed away from his proposal to raise gun purchase age limits, claiming “not much political support” (WSJ).

U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations announced that the United States may intervene in Syria if the UN Security Council does not secure a cease fire (WaPo).

President Trump blocked an attempted takeover of Qualcomm by the Singapore-based Broadcom, citing national security concerns (NYTimes, Politico, The Hill, WaPo, WSJ).

The Trump administration has failed to use U.S. military support as leverage to pressure Saudi Arabia and the UAE to end the war in Yemen, argue Eric Eikenberry and Kate Kizer at Just Security.

 

REGULATION

A federal district court ruled that the Environmental Protection Agency’s delay in implementing an ozone pollution rule violated the Clean Air Act (The Hill).

The United States Department of Agriculture withdrew an Obama-era rule on animal welfare standards for organic meat (The Hill).

Conservative commentator Larry Kudlow is likely to replace Gary Cohn as director of the National Economic Council (Politico, WSJ).

12 consolidated lawsuits challenging the Federal Communications Commission’s repeal of net neutrality rules will be heard by the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit (Ars Technica).

 

RULE OF LAW

Incidents involving White House Counsel Don McGahn and President Trump’s personal lawyer Michael Cohen imply that President Trump has limited respect for the rule of law, contends Bob Bauer at Lawfare.

Stormy Daniels has offered to return a $130,000 payment from President Trump made as part of a non-disclosure agreement regarding an alleged affair, reports Jim Rutenberg in the New York Times.

The top Democrat on the House Oversight Committee asked the committee to subpoena documents from the Trump Foundation, citing possible illegal aid to President Trump’s campaign (The Hill).

 

RUSSIAN INTERFERENCE

The House Intelligence Committee concluded its investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election. The Republican majority claimed that it found no evidence of collusion or intent by the Russian government to support the Trump campaign, but Democratic members disputed this conclusion (NYTimes, Politico, The Hill, WaPo, WSJ).

The Special Counsel’s choice of charges in the indictments that have been released thus far indicate potential exposure for high-level Trump administration figures, suggests Sam Berger at Just Security.

In a letter, Congressional Democrats urged President Trump to request the extradition of several Russians indicted by Special Counsel Robert Mueller for interfering in the 2016 election (NYTimes, The Hill).

After the British prime minister announced that Russia was likely responsible for the poisoning of a former Russian spy living in the UK, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders declined to say whether the United States agrees with the assessment (WaPo).

 


Daily Update | September 21, 2018

9/21/18  //  Daily Update

Dr. Christine Blasey Ford says she would agree to testify at a Senate hearing next week, but would not be prepared to do so on Monday. The Trump Administration plans to shift $260 million from program like cancer research and AIDS prevention to cover the cost of housing thousands of undocumented immigrant children in the custody of the Department of Health and Human Services. The Pentagon stopped announcing body counts of Taliban and Islamic State fighters killed in battle in Afghanistan, a practice which had begun in January. The Justice Department’s Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention has begun dismantling decades-old policies meant to improve racial disparities in youth incarceration. A number of Russian oligarchs close to Vladimir Putin managed to build relationships with elements of the Trump campaign in 2016.

Zachary Piaker

Columbia Law School

Daily Update | September 20, 2018

9/20/18  //  Daily Update

As election day nears, many states and counties are beefing up their plans to deal with cyberattacks on election infrastructure. Undocumented immigrant families affected by Hurricane Florence are wondering whether seeking government resources like shelter, food, or other aid would put them at greater risk. State Department officials are facing backlash over the decision to drastically limit the number of refugees who will be permitted to settle in the U.S. The Office of Inspector General criticized the Bureau of Prisons’ management of female prisoners. Terrorism is down worldwide, but the State Department says that Iran maintains a ‘near-global reach’ as the leading state sponsor of terrorism. North Korean leader Kim Jong-un committed to some concrete steps towards denuclearization, but fell short of what American officials have demanded.

Hanna St. Marie

Columbia Law School

Daily Update | September 19, 2018

9/19/18  //  Daily Update

President Trump’s order for the Justice Department to declassify certain materials related to the investigation and surveillance of his former campaign advisor, Carter Page, is a self-interested effort at “obfuscation, concealment, deception, and the weaponizing of the oversight process.” Mike Pompeo announced that the Administration will cap its refugee resettlement for the coming fiscal year at 30,000, the lowest number in history. Administration officials urged Congress to amend a decades-old court ruling that limits the amount of time migrant children can be detained. FEMA Chief William Long has been suspended and is facing a possible criminal investigation related to his use of government vehicles. More evidence has arisen showing that Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross lied to Congress in testifying that DOJ initially approached him about adding the citizenship question to the census.

Mackenzie Walz

University of Michigan Law School

Hanna St. Marie

Columbia Law School