Lark Turner  //  3/6/18  //  Daily Update


ICE is separating children from parents at the border. To Mueller subpoena, former Trump aide Sam Nunberg says “screw that,” “let him arrest me.” Arkansas gets the go-ahead to impose work requirements on recipients of Medicaid. Unfavorable court decisions could deter would-be whistleblowers from exposing wrongdoing at America’s intelligence agencies. FCC Director Ajit Pai’s proposal to dramatically restructure an internet subsidy to impoverished people is drawing criticism from all sides.

 

IMMIGRATION

ICE is separating children from parents at the border, and that’s wrong, writes the editorial board of The Los Angeles Times.

 

CIVIL RIGHTS

To accommodate both moral and religious objections, as the Trump Administration has proposed in the contraceptive context, treat both the same in granting exemptions — and allow both to be overriden where they impose harm on others, write Nelson Tebbe, Micah Schwartzman, and Richard Schragger at Balkinzation.

Michigan State erupts over white supremacist rally featuring Richard Spencer (WaPo).

An unpublished opinion out of Colorado sheds light on narrow tailoring in religious discrimination (and speech) cases (Dorf on Law).

Frances McDormand’s Oscar acceptance speech brings contract law language into the public conversation with her encouragement of inclusion riders (NYT).

 

JUSTICE & SAFETY

Unfavorable court decisions could deter would-be whistleblowers from exposing wrongdoing at America’s intelligence agencies, writes Irvin McCullough at Just Security.

How serious is a possible Russian threat to undersea cables vital to the function of the global internet? (Lawfare)

The historical support for a fine’s excessiveness turning in part on a defendant’s ability to pay (The Volokh Conspiracy).

 

CONFLICTS OF INTEREST

President Trump’s name is removed from Panama hotel (WaPo).

 

REGULATION

If a new 20-state suit challenging the constitutionality of the ACA sounds crazy, that’s because it is, writes Nick Bagley at Take Care.

Arkansas gets the go-ahead to impose work requirements on recipients of Medicaid (WaPo).

Trump’s proposed tariffs set up a showdown with Congressional Republicans (WaPo, NYT).

  • The tariffs have Trump’s former economic advisers reeling (LA Times).

HUD’s Ben Carson finds running the agency more complex than brain surgery (NYT).

A study suggests that the stronger a state’s gun laws, the lower its suicide rates (LA Times).

Confusion around the term “assault weapon” goes back to its roots, writes David B. Kopel at the Volokh Conspiracy.

FCC Director Ajit Pai’s proposal to dramatically restructure an internet subsidy to impoverished people is drawing criticism from all sides (Ars Technica).

The FDA’s proposed ban on kratom, a drug used to treat chronic pain and opioid addiction, is misguided, writes Jeffrey Miron at Cato at Liberty.

 

RULE OF LAW

Rather than threatening the rule of law, maybe the president is just exercising his right to be an idiot, writes Joseph Margulies for Verdict.

 

REMOVAL FROM OFFICE 

Available evidence already supports an obstruction of justice case against the President, at least under the nexus requirement of United States v. Aguilar, writes Alex Whiting at Just Security.

Trump doesn’t have what it takes to be a dictator, writes Michael Gerson at The Washington Post, while his colleague Dana Milbank writes that Trump is “blessedly weak.”

 

RUSSIAN INTERFERENCE

To Mueller subpoena, former Trump aide Sam Nunberg says “screw that,” “let him arrest me” (CNN, NYT, WaPo).

  • Nunberg is “playing with fire,” write Quinta Jurecic and Benjamin Wittes at Lawfare.
  • Public support for the investigation is growing, but along predictably partisan lines, write Mieke Eoyang, Ben Freeman, and Benjamin Wittes at Lawfare.
  • The last person imprisoned for civil contempt as part of a special counsel investigation would advise Nunberg to take a different course (WaPo).

An escort from Belarus with ties to a Russian oligarch says she has audio recordings showing Russian meddling in the election (NYT).

 


Daily Update | August 14, 2018

8/14/18  //  Daily Update

The District of Columbia rejects Russian company’s bid to dismiss charges brought by Robert Mueller. Omarosa Manigault Newman, former aide to President Trump, releases a recording of her firing made in the White House Situation Room. President Trump appears to admit that White House aids sign nondisclosure agreements. FBI Agent Peter Strzok, who criticized President Trump in texts, is fired. Rudy Giuliani says President Trump’s lawyers are prepared to counter Robert Mueller. The prosecution called its final witness in Paul Manafort’s trial. A rally by white supremacists in Charlottesville, Virginia, is greatly outnumbered by counter-protesters.

Roshaan Wasim

Columbia Law School

Daily Update | August 13, 2018

8/13/18  //  Daily Update

Testimony in Paul Manafort’s trial asserted that the CEO of Federal Savings Bank, which lent Manafort $16 million, wanted Manafort to get him a Cabinet-level position. A federal judge threatened to hold DOJ officials -- even Jeff Sessions -- when a mother and child were deported in the middle of their suit against the DOJ. GEO Group, a private prison that contracts to provide immigration detention centers, has threatened to sue protesters for defamation and tortious interference. The torture of a suspected al-Qaeda terrorist, including waterboarding, is described in detail in cables that CIA Director Gina Haspel sent to agency headquarters in late 2002. Hacking competitions show that manipulating the U.S. elections systems is easy -- even within the capability of budding adolescent hackers. Financial trails suggest that Peter Smith, a Republican operative, may have paid Russian hackers in his quest to obtain Hillary Clinton’s missing e-mails.

Karen Kadish

Columbia Law School

Daily Update | August 10, 2018

8/10/18  //  Daily Update

President Trump’s legal team have made a counteroffer to Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s proposed terms for an interview between Mr. Mueller and President Trump. The proposed terms would allow questioning on Russian collusion, but would limit inquiries regarding obstruction of justice. The National Association of Immigration Judges filed a labor grievance on Wednesday, accusing the Department of Justice of undermining their autonomy by reassigning cases in order to maximize deportations. The Senate Judiciary Committee released the first set of documents from Brett Kavanaugh’s time in the George W. Bush White House. Foreign lobbyists and their agents have spent over $530 million influencing US policy and public opinion since January, 2017.

Karen Kadish

Columbia Law School