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    Beware the "Public Corruption" Amendment to the STOCK Act

    Perhaps not so surprisingly, Washington politicians on both sides of the aisle are opposed to the recent change by Representative Eric Cantor (R–VA) and the House of Representatives in eliminating the so-called public corruption amendment that was proposed by Senators Patrick Leahy (D–VT) and John Cornyn (R–TX) and attached to … More

    A Bird-Brained Use of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act

    Do you own a home with large windows? Is there a cat that you let out in your backyard?  If so, then you might just wind up violating the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA), if the federal government’s interpretation of the Act is allowed to stand. The 1918 law was … More

    Senate's Public Corruption Move Raises Overcriminalization Concerns

    The Senate is currently considering the addition of a public corruption bill as an amendment to the STOCK Act.  While the goal of reining in public corruption is laudable, as has been discussed before, many of the policies in the proposed amendment raise significant overcriminalization concerns. Heritage, a task force … More

    Missing the Mark on Military Commissions

    Last week, I again had the privilege of traveling to Guantanamo Bay to observe a military commission proceeding as an invited representative of a non-governmental organization (NGO), my employer, The Heritage Foundation.  And once again, I was disappointed by the lack of informed commentary from my fellow NGO representatives.   Perhaps … More

    Landmark Supreme Court Ruling on Technology and the Fourth Amendment

    On Monday, the Supreme Court issued an important ruling on the subject of surveillance in light of today’s technologies. Its opinion in United States v. Jones makes the rules for surveillance much less clear, which perhaps is not surprising given the rapid technological change and the need for further legislative … More

    Supremes Shut Down Judicial Activism Over Voting Maps

    Today, the Supreme Court tossed out the work of a district court that attempted to force its own electoral maps on the state of Texas, while ignoring the maps drawn by the Texas legislature.  The unanimous decision is a major victory for constitutional federalism, and a blow to runaway judicial activism. … More

    Is Coal de Minimus? The Problem with the Alabama Ethics Commission

    In the wake of a number of corruption scandals, the Alabama legislature endeavored to reform their system by enacting tough ethics laws. But does that mean that a student can no longer give a teacher a Christmas gift?  For some students and parents in the Yellowhammer State, that may mean … More

    Rick Santorum, Felon Voting, and the Constitution

    Last night’s Republican presidential debate raised the issue of felon voting.  Rick Santorum was challenged over his vote for federal legislation that would automatically restore the voting rights to felons as soon as they are released from prison and have completed any required probation or parole. As I testified nearly … More

    BREAKING: Perry, Gingrich, Santorum, Huntsman Will Not Be on Virginia Ballot

    BREAKING NEWS—Rick Perry, Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum, and Jon Huntsman will not be on the Virginia GOP ballot. Federal district court Judge John Gibney has just issued a ruling in Richmond finding that the Virginia requirement that ballot petition circulators must be state residents is a violation of the First … More

    Online Chat on Obama's Appointments

    Obama made a big splash last week when he appointed a new head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and three appointments to the National Labor Relations Board without confirmation of the Senate even though they were technically in session. These appointments were an abuse of presidential power. Click … More