Daily Update | June 22, 2018
6/22/18 // Daily Update
Federal authorities have subpoenaed the publisher of the National Enquirer for records related to its $150,000 payment to a former Playboy model for the rights to her story alleging an affair with Donald Trump. House Republican leaders postponed a vote on a “compromise” immigration proposal until Friday. The U.S. Border Patrol will no longer refer migrant parents who cross into the United States illegally with children to federal courthouses to face criminal charges. The White House announced a plan on Thursday to combine the Education and Labor departments to form the Department of Education and the Workforce. In Lucia v. SEC, the Supreme Court struck a major blow at one of the centerpieces of the administrative state: the tradition of civil-service appointments of independent administrative law judges.
Daily Update | April 27, 2018
4/27/18 // Daily Update
Michael Cohen will invoke his Fifth Amendment right in a lawsuit filed against the president by Stephanie Clifford. The Supreme Court heard oral argument in Hawaii v. Trump, the challenge to President Trump’s third “Travel Ban.” The justices grappled with questions like whether the proclamation was too broad, whether the president had the authority to issue the proclamation, and whether President Trump’s anti-Muslim statements should impact interpretation of the order. The Department of Health and Human Services told members of Congress that it has lost track of nearly 1,500 migrant children it placed with sponsors in the United States, raising concerns they could end up in the hands of human traffickers or be used as laborers by people posing as relatives.
Daily Update | April 20, 2018
4/20/18 // Daily Update
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that he intends to restore voting rights to felons on parole, a move that could open the ballot box to more than 35,000 people. The White House cybersecurity team is undergoing a major shuffle that former officials say could jeopardize the administration’s efforts to develop policy and punish hackers. Congressional Republicans want to impose "net neutrality" rules that allow Internet service providers to charge online services and websites for priority access to consumers, analogizing paid priority to TSA Precheck. Just four months after giving $1.5 trillion in tax cuts to the wealthiest Americans, House Republicans recently unveiled a farm bill that would dismantle the nation’s main source of nutrition assistance for struggling workers and families. Congress will hold hearings to debate America’s role in the Yemeni civil conflict, which has led to one of the world's most dire humanitarian crises.
Daily Update | March 30, 2018
3/30/18 // Daily Update
A federal district court judge has ruled that a lawsuit challenging the decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program can move forward. Former Attorney General Eric Holder announced that he plans to file a lawsuit on behalf of the National Democratic Redistricting Committee to block the addition of a citizenship question to the 2020 census. The Kremlin plans to expel 150 Western diplomats in response to the the expulsion of Russian diplomats from a variety of western nations. A new government study suggests that thousands of teachers had their federal grants taken away and converted to loans, sometimes for minor errors in paperwork. Attorney General Jeff Sessions rebuffed a call from Republican leaders to appoint a second special counsel to look into the FBI’s handling of its most high-profile probes.
Daily Update | March 26, 2018
3/26/18 // Daily Update
The law firm Munger Tolles & Olson LLP is requiring its summer associates to sign an agreement to arbitrate a host of claims, including those related to sexual harassment and sex discrimination. President Trump moved ahead with a plan to ban most transgender people from serving in the military, with limited exceptions, following up on a proposal he called for last summer. The adult film star Stephanie Clifford told “60 Minutes” that she struck a $130,000 deal for her silence about an alleged affair with Donald J. Trump in the final days of the 2016 campaign because she was worried about her safety. Officials said that President Trump is close to expelling 20 or more Russian diplomats in response to the poisoning of a former Russian spy in Britain. Investigators have reportedly discovered that "Guccifer 2.0," the hacker who claimed credit for a breach of the Democratic National Committee during the 2016 presidential race, revealed himself as a Russian intelligence operative.
Daily Update | March 12, 2018
3/12/18 // Daily Update
The ACLU announced it has filed a national class-action lawsuit against multiple federal government agencies over the practice of separating asylum-seeking families. President Trump reportedly told Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that he will withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal if Germany, France and the United Kingdom do not meet his demands. The Trump and Kushner families have developed increasingly close business relationships since President Trump was elected and Jared Kushner joined the White House. President Trump’s efforts to undermine the independence of federal law enforcement agencies mirror the approach of autocratic leaders.
Daily Update | March 2, 2018
3/2/18 // Daily Update
According to a new poll, more than 80% of Americans favor continuing the DACA program. U.S. counterintelligence officials, including the FBI, are scrutinizing Ivanka Trump's negotiations and financing surrounding the Trump International Hotel and Tower in Vancouver. Starting on March 1, more than 1,000 employees of the federal judiciary became subject to a policy that prohibits them from partisan political activity, including campaign contributions. Vladimir Putin used his annual state of the nation speech to threaten Western nations with a new generation of nuclear weapons and to reassure Russians that new social spending will benefit their lives.
Daily Update | February 2, 2018
2/2/18 // Daily Update
The Trump Administration refused to sign a statement in support of an Inter-American Court of Human Rights ruling on marriage equality and transgender rights. Redistricting court decisions are unlikely to have an impact on the outcome of the 2018 midterm elections, with the one big exception of Pennsylvania’s surprise state court ruling. Special Counsel Robert Mueller has reportedly zeroed in on a statement penned by President Trump and his advisors aboard Air Force One last July which sought to explain a meeting between Russians and top campaign officials during the previous summer.
Daily Update | January 10, 2018
1/10/18 // Daily Update
A federal judge granted a preliminary injunction that requires the Trump Administration to resume accepting Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) renewal applications. In a court filing, the Trump Administration said that it intends to destroy the voter data collected by the election fraud commission. Nebraska is launching an attempt to save net neutrality rules, becoming the first Republican-controlled state to do so. Senator Dianne Feinstein unilaterally released a transcript of the Judiciary Committee’s interview with one of the founders of the firm that produced an infamous dossier outlining Russian efforts to aid the Trump campaign.
Daily Update | January 8, 2018
1/8/18 // Daily Update
A federal judge in Brooklyn held that the government cannot decide to criminally prosecute immigrants and then keep them locked up on immigration detainers if they are subsequently granted bail. The Trump Administration may be undermining the 2020 census by adding a question about citizenship and removing questions about gender identity and sexual orientation. After almost a year, the Trump Administration’s Justice Department lacks Senate-confirmed appointees in leadership posts running the national security, criminal, civil rights and other key divisions.
Daily Update | December 18, 2017
12/18/17 // Daily Update
A federal court on Friday blocked Trump administration rules that made it easier for employers to deny insurance coverage of contraceptives for women. President Trump took aim at the FBI on Friday, calling its behavior “disgraceful” just before he appeared at its training facility to praise the nation’s police officers. Senator-Elect Doug Jones refused to call for President Trump to step down over sexual harassment allegations. A lawyer for President Trump claimed Robert Mueller obtained transition emails improperly, while a spokesman for Mueller disputed the claims.
Daily Update | December 14, 2017
12/14/17 // Daily Update
Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen harshly criticized so-called “sanctuary cities” late Tuesday. Due to gerrymandering, Doug Jones lost all but one of Alabama’s congressional districts while winning the statewide race. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said the US is ready to talk with North Korea without preconditions, in comments that appeared to signal a shift in State Department policy. A conference committee reached a tentative agreement to reconcile the House and Senate versions of the Republican tax plan, but it is unclear whether the plan will attract sufficient support at final votes next week. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein defended Special Counsel Robert Mueller from criticism in a hearing before the House Judiciary Committee.
Daily Update | November 20, 2017
11/20/17 // Daily Update
Justice Department officials are preparing to announce several cases against Iranian suspects. Attorney General Jeff Sessions issued a new policy forbidding the Department of Justice from imposing new rules via guidance letters. Frustrated with the Trump administration, foreign leaders are attempting to build relationships with state-level Democrats on issues such as climate change.