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What Should the Senate Do With Brett Kavanaugh?
...Here’s what our panel of legal scholars thinks should happen next...‘
‘The question isn’t only whether Brett Kavanaugh can still be a Supreme Court Justice; it’s whether he can still be a federal judge." Catharine A. MacKinnon
...‘This accusation cannot responsibly be ignored’ Laurence H. Tribe
US Imposes New $200bn Tariffs on China (audio)
The US is imposing new tariffs on $200bn worth of Chinese goods as it escalates its trade war with Beijing. We hear from Mark Wu
, professor of international trade law at Harvard Law School.
The New York Times
Legal Experts Urge Release of Watergate Report to Offer Mueller a Road Map
...Echoing a move by the Watergate prosecutor in March 1974, the grand jury with which Mr. Mueller has been working could try to send a report about the evidence it has gathered directly to the House Judiciary Committee. And on Friday, seeking to draw more attention to that option, three prominent legal analysts asked a court to lift a veil of secrecy that has long kept that Watergate-era report hidden...The petition was filed by Benjamin Wittes, a Brookings Institution senior fellow and the editor in chief of Lawfare, an online publication that specializes in national security legal policy issues; Jack Goldsmith
, a Harvard Law School professor and senior Justice Department official in the George W. Bush administration; and Stephen Bates, a University of Nevada, Las Vegas, law professor who, as a federal prosecutor working for Ken Starr, the independent counsel who investigated President Bill Clinton, co-wrote the report to Congress recommending that Mr. Clinton be impeached. The three are represented by Protect Democracy, a government watchdog group...In another declaration, Mr. Goldsmith noted the incongruity that the Watergate-era document has a better historical reputation than the Starr report and yet is unavailable for public scrutiny. He argued that making it public would help inform discussion of any effort by Mr. Mueller to send information to Congress, a task that could require navigating “difficult and sensitive issues of executive power, separation of powers and individual rights.”
The Crisis Was in the System
...Here is a recent paper by John Coates
of Harvard Law School with the imposing title “The Future of Corporate Governance Part I: The Problem of Twelve.” The “problem of twelve” is his name for “the likelihood that in the near future roughly twelve individuals will have practical power over the majority of U.S. public companies”: We are rapidly moving into a world in which the bulk of equity capital of large companies with dispersed ownership will be owned by a small number of institutions.
The Problem With All Those Liberal Professors
An op-ed by Cass Sunstein
. Suppose that you start college with a keen interest in physics, and you quickly discover that almost all members of the physics department are Democrats. Would you think that something is wrong? Would your answer be different if your favorite subject is music, chemistry, computer science, anthropology or sociology? In recent years, concern has grown over what many people see as a left-of-center political bias at colleges and universities. A few months ago, Mitchell Langbert, an associate professor of business at Brooklyn College, published a study of the political affiliations of faculty members at 51 of the 66 liberal-arts colleges ranked highest by U.S. News in 2017. The findings are eye-popping (even if they do not come as a great surprise to many people in academia).
Daily Hampshire Gazette
Harvard Law’s Minow addresses ‘changing ecosystem of news’ in Smith talk
With the rise of the internet, national and local news organizations alike are struggling. Budget cuts and shrinking staffs are all too common. Martha Minow
, a human rights expert and Harvard Law School professor, took on these and other changes in the media landscape at a public lecture at Smith College, Monday, “Freedom of the Press and the Changing Ecosystem of News.” The talk marked Constitution Day, the anniversary of the signing of the U.S. Constitution in 1787.
Kavanaugh Accused Of Sexual Assault
It's not every presidential administration in which news that the former campaign chairman has agreed to cooperate with the special counsel, gets knocked off the front page in a matter of hours. But the Trump team is ever the exception. And today, all anyone nationally can talk about is his Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, and the woman who has publicly accused him of sexual assault. Jim Braude was joined by Nancy Gertner
, retired federal judge and senior lecturer at Harvard Law, Martha Coakley, former state Attorney General and now a partner at Foley Hoag, and Jim Rappaport, former chair of the Mass. GOP.
Withdrawal From DACA Litigation Becomes Key Point In Texas Attorney General Race
An op-ed by Samuel Garcia `19
. “Why do you think that you can win as a Democrat in Texas?” This is the biggest question hanging over Justin Nelson, Democratic candidate for Texas Attorney General. His response: “I will withdraw Texas from the DACA suit on my first day in office.” Figures from the Department of Homeland Security show that there are approximately 690,000 children in the United States under the protection of DACA (Deferred Action for Children Arrivals). Although altering immigration policy is usually the responsibility of the federal government, children under the protection of DACA may have their status in this country impacted by the results of the Texas Attorney General race. This is because Texas is the lead plaintiff in a multi-state lawsuit to end DACA...According to Phil Torrey
, Managing Attorney of the Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinical Program, the outcome of the Texas Attorney General race may have fatal consequences to the DACA suit since other states may not be willing to put forth the resources necessary to litigate.
The Washington Post
Trump is violating his oath, again
...The move is unprecedented. Never have we seen a president declassify documents in contravention of clear warnings from the intelligence community that doing so would harm national security...Others see the abuse of presidential power regarding classification as a parallel, but distinct, issue. Constitutional scholar Laurence H. Tribe
argues, “Has this president repeatedly and dangerously abused his powers to classify and declassify information — risking our national security to punish his critics (as with [former CIA director] John Brennan), undermine the work of those investigating him and his family, and reward family members with access to sensitive information they would otherwise be unable to access? The answer appears to be “yes” and, at least, the question warrants systematic investigation by the House Judiciary and Intelligence Committees.”
Defrauded student loan borrowers in limbo in wake of judge’s ruling
A tug-of-war between student borrowers hoping to get tens of thousands of dollars in loans they took out for their education discharged and the government may be a step closer to resolution. A federal judge ruled this week that repeated delays by Education Secretary Betsy DeVos of an Obama administration plan to provide debt relief to defrauded borrowers was unlawful..."We think this is an incredibly important ruling both for cheated student loan borrowers and anyone who cares about the government under the rule of law instead of under the thumb of a predatory, for-profit college industry," said Toby Merrill
, director of the Harvard Law School's Project on Predatory Student Lending.
City attorney sues blogger for libel. Is it ‘a threat designed to silence?’
Local politics blogger Kevin Vericker is better known for putting an occasional toe — OK, foot — over the line than for pulling punches. Wielding hyperbole in the rabid manner endemic to the blogosphere, the retired software analyst relentlessly details the palace intrigue of tiny North Bay Village for his 1,000 local readers...The suit is part of a growing trend of public officials taking bloggers to court for posts they see as harmful to their personal or professional image, according to Kendra Albert
of Harvard Law School’s Cyberlaw Clinic. Melania Trump filed a high-profile libel suit against a Maryland blogger that settled last year in her favor, with a full retraction and significant reparations. While some cases are legitimate, Albert said, the increase in lawsuits against journalists (think Hulk Hogan vs. Gawker) has publications thinking twice before publishing. These days, even facts can be expensive to defend.
Indexed Investments and “The Problem of Twelve”
has a thoughtful paper on the legal and economic challenges of “the problem of twelve,” the prospect of a majority of shares in public companies being managed by just twelve entities, in effect twelve people. "[T]he rise of indexing presents a sharp, general, political challenge to corporate law. The prospect of twelve people even potentially controlling most of the economy poses a legitimacy and accountability issue of the first order – one might even call it a small “c” constitutional challenge."