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  • Commentary posted December 11, 2013 by John Malcolm Over-criminalization undermines respect for legal system

    Despite some of the sharpest political divisions in memory, Congress managed to mount one noteworthy bipartisan effort this year. Since May, the Over-criminalization Task Force, comprising five Republicans and five Democrats from the House Judiciary Committee, has worked diligently to develop recommendations that will address some of the fundamental problems plaguing the…

  • Commentary posted December 2, 2013 by Hans A. von Spakovsky Hypocrisy on the ‘Nuclear Option’

    On Nov. 21, Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and other members of the Senate, with the support of President Obama, who apparently lobbied wavering Democrats, broke the rules to change the rules and got rid of the filibuster for presidential nominations. So much for the tradition of debate in the U.S. Senate. The consequences could be dire. When Harry Reid was the minority…

  • Commentary posted November 11, 2013 by James Jay Carafano, Ph.D. A Way Forward on Immigration

    When President Obama invited Michael McCaul, R-Texas, chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security, to visit the White House, he got an unexpected response. McCaul said no. "I saw it as a political trap," McCaul told conservative radio talk-show host Laura Ingraham. Since Mr. Obama first entered the Oval Office, he has never presented a serious strategy…

  • Commentary posted November 1, 2013 by Hans A. von Spakovsky Last-Minute Settlement Saves 'Disparate Impact' - Again

    “Disparate impact” — a legal theory favored by the administration in bringing discrimination lawsuits — has once again ducked its day in court. For the second time in two years, a settlement has been engineered with the parties challenging the dubious theory, effectively keeping the Supreme Court from ruling on its validity. The Wall Street Journal reports that a…

  • Commentary posted October 24, 2013 by Hans A. von Spakovsky, Elizabeth Slattery Packing Washington's most crucial court

    The U.S. Senate will soon vote on the nominations of three individuals to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. This court is widely regarded as a steppingstone to the Supreme Court. Because of its location in the nation’s capital, a considerable portion of its cases involve federal agencies. This makes the D.C. Circuit a watchdog over the…

  • Commentary posted October 8, 2013 by Hans A. von Spakovsky The Supreme Court's Latest Opportunity to Restore the First Amendment

    Today, the Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in a case that will give the justices another opportunity to overturn a campaign finance regulation that directly restricts the associational and free speech rights of American citizens. Hopefully, the Supremes will get it right – as the majority did in the Citizens United decision back in 2010 when they threw out an…

  • Commentary posted October 3, 2013 by Hans A. von Spakovsky 'Grotesque' DOJ Misconduct

    In a shocking case of “grotesque” misconduct by federal prosecutors, a federal judge in Louisiana has ordered a new trial for five New Orleans police officers convicted for a shooting on the Danziger Bridge on September 4, 2005 — in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina — and for a subsequent cover-up. This is another black eye for the Holder Justice Department that the…

  • Commentary posted September 18, 2013 by Evan Bernick It’s past time to scale back police militarization

    It was American law enforcement's "We're going to need a bigger boat" moment. In the summer of 1965, a six-day frenzy of looting, burning and sniping consumed Los Angeles' Watts neighborhood. With people running and shooting in all directions, the rioters' tactics resembled those of guerrilla warfare, so much so that the Los Angeles Police Department's point man…

  • Commentary posted September 3, 2013 by Hans A. von Spakovsky Voter ID Laws Keep Our Elections Secure

    The Justice Department has no basis for suing Texas under Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act (VRA) over its voter ID law. And it presents no evidence to support its claim under Section 3 that Texas should be placed under federal supervision for any additional changes in its voting laws for the foreseeable future. Requiring voters to prove that they are who they say…

  • Commentary posted August 6, 2013 by Hans A. von Spakovsky The University of Texas Will Have to Fight Its Own Battle

    A fascinating development in the Fisher v. Univ. of Texas at Austin case: The Texas solicitor general yesterday notified the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals that Attorney General Greg Abbott is no longer representing the university. NRO readers will recall that Abigail Fisher, who was denied admission to UT, sued the university after she discovered that less qualified…

  • Commentary posted August 1, 2013 by John Malcolm, Hans A. von Spakovsky Bradley Manning Received Exactly the Justice He Deserved

    No one should be surprised that Bradley Manning was found not guilty of aiding the enemy. Proving in court that such a violation took place is very difficult. Besides, Manning had already pleaded guilty to lesser charges and was found guilty of multiple counts of violating the Espionage Act when he disclosed classified information that was published on the Internet and…

  • Commentary posted July 30, 2013 by Hans A. von Spakovsky More Voting-Rights Challenges from Holder

    The Washington Post reports that Eric Holder plans to file voting-rights challenges not only against Texas, which the DOJ did last week, but against a number of other states, too. These challenges are part of a crusade to, as Holder says, “use every tool” at the Obama administration’s disposal to continue federal oversight of the states in this area, despite the Supreme…

  • Commentary posted July 26, 2013 by Hans A. von Spakovsky Harry Reid, Obama Sell Myth of GOP Obstructing Judicial Nominations

    The rush by Senator Harry Reid (D-NV) to push through President Obama’s latest judicial nominees before their records can be thoroughly reviewed is underway. On June 4, while announcing his nomination of three more judges to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, President Obama repeated what has become a Democratic mantra: Republican senators are…

  • Commentary posted July 23, 2013 by Hans A. von Spakovsky Eric Holder's Zimmerman Fishing Trip

    It didn’t take long for Attorney General Eric Holder’s Justice Department to submit to mounting political pressure following the full acquittal of George Zimmerman. Just one day after the verdict was read in the Trayvon Martin case, the Justice Department pledged: “Experienced federal prosecutors will determine whether the evidence reveals a prosecutable violation of any…

  • Commentary posted July 17, 2013 by Hans A. von Spakovsky Justice Department Should Not Intervene

    Whatever one may think about the guilt or innocence of George Zimmerman — and a jury found him innocent — we should all agree that the chief law enforcement agency of the federal government should not be involved in stage-managing public protests. Yet according to the documents obtained by Judicial Watch through a Freedom of Information Act request, the Community…