Tag: Law and Legislation

N.S.A. Phone Program Cost $100 Million, but Produced Only Two Unique Leads

WASHINGTON — A National Security Agency system that analyzed logs of Americans’ domestic phone calls and text messages cost $100 million from 2015 to 2019, but yielded only a single significant investigation, according to a newly declassified study. Moreover, only twice during that four-year period did the program generate unique information that the F.B.I. did […]

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As Domestic Terrorists Outpace Jihadists, New U.S. Law Is Debated

When the New Jersey Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness issued its terrorism threat assessment for 2020 last week, it noted a marked shift. The threat level from violent, homegrown extremists, and specifically white supremacists, was marked in red as the top category: “High.” The threat from the Islamic State, Al Qaeda and their ilk […]

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McConnell, Looking to Energize Social Conservatives, Forces Votes on Abortion

WASHINGTON — Senator Mitch McConnell is about to plunge the Senate into the nation’s culture wars with votes on bills to sharply restrict access to late-term abortions and threaten some doctors who perform them with criminal penalties, signaling that Republicans plan to make curbing a woman’s right to terminate a pregnancy a central theme of […]

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Oregon Republicans Disappear for Another Climate Vote

SEATTLE — Less than a year after Oregon’s Senate Republicans fled the state with passports in hand and hid out in Idaho cabins to avoid voting on a climate change bill, they have disappeared again. With Democrats seeking to advance a new proposal to cap the state’s greenhouse gas emissions, most Republicans refused to attend […]

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Property Tax Standoff: ‘The Political Will to Do This Does Not Exist’

ALBANY, N.Y. — In a closed-door meeting in 2013, politically powerful developers told Bill de Blasio that they were planning a lawsuit challenging New York City’s property tax system. The political system had done nothing to address their concerns for more than 20 years, they told Mr. de Blasio, who was about to be elected […]

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In One State, a Holdout Juror Can’t Block a Conviction. That May Not Last.

PENDLETON, Ore. — For three days, the jury was deadlocked. Nine jurors wanted to convict James Worley, a church pastor accused of sexually abusing a young relative. Three others said they could not find him guilty. “It was awful being in that room,” Carlos Cardoso, who was among the jurors who did not want to […]

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New Bid to Legalize Abortion in Argentina, With President’s Backing

BUENOS AIRES — Abortion rights activists in Argentina have formally started the second round in their effort to advance reproductive rights in the land of Pope Francis, buoyed by the hope that the country’s transformed political landscape will put their goal within reach. Two years ago, activists organized a powerful grass-roots movement that helped persuade […]

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Boeing, to Fend Off Sanctions, Backs Ending State Tax Breaks

Moving to end a threat of international trade sanctions against Boeing, lawmakers in Washington State on Wednesday introduced legislation that would eliminate tax breaks for the plane maker. The World Trade Organization concluded last year that Boeing benefited from unfair subsidies from the state worth roughly $100 million a year. State Senator Marko Liias, a […]

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Vape Shops Face a Choice: Close or Rebrand?

EAST HANOVER, N.J. — Adam Mitrani opened his first Darth Vapor e-cigarette shop six years ago after his carwash business collapsed. Before long, Mr. Mitrani, 48, had a second store in New Jersey and one in New York. Business was brisk, he said, and he was optimistic that offering smokers an alternative to tobacco would […]

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Need a New Driver’s License to Fly? Prepare for a Real Wait.

Motor vehicle offices are a particular sort of urban hell where people spend hour after hour waiting — waiting to take a number, waiting to have a photograph snapped, waiting to take a vision test, waiting to be called to a clerk’s window. All to get or renew a driver’s license. Now, as many unhappy […]

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She Didn’t Want a Pelvic Exam. She Received One Anyway.

Janine, a nurse in Arizona, checked into the hospital for stomach surgery in 2017. Before the procedure, she told her physician that she did not want medical students to be directly involved. But after the operation, Janine said, as the anesthesia wore off, a resident came by to inform her that she had gotten her […]

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Give the New Bail Reform Law Time to Work

It just so happens that a campaign to roll back New York’s landmark bail reforms is unfolding as Michael Bloomberg’s presidential run forces a reckoning with stop-and-frisk, the policing tactic that led to the harassment and humiliation of millions of innocent people, most of them black and Hispanic boys and men, while Mr. Bloomberg was […]

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Denver Mayor Says Pit Bull Ban Will Stand

The mayor of Denver, voicing concern about the “very real risk” of injury to children, said Friday he would veto a measure passed by the City Council that would have repealed the city’s 30-year ban on pit bulls. The mayor, Michael B. Hancock, said he had received passionate comments from thousands of residents on both […]

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The Bail Reform Backlash That Has Democrats at War

ALBANY, N.Y. — A serial bank robber who struck again four hours after he was released from custody. A wall of white faces in police uniforms, filling the State Capitol steps in protest. A protected witness bludgeoned to death. These are some of the images and incidents that have been used in what has become […]

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White House Memo Justifying Suleimani Strike Cites No Imminent Threat

WASHINGTON — The White House told Congress on Friday that President Trump authorized the strike last month that killed Iran’s most important general to respond to attacks that had already taken place and deter future ones, contradicting the president’s claim that he acted in response to an imminent threat. In a legally mandated, two-page unclassified […]

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Who’s Profiting From Your Outrageous Medical Bills?

Every politician condemns the phenomenon of “surprise” medical bills. This week, two committees in the House are marking up new surprise billing legislation. One of the few policy proposals President Trump brought up in this week’s State of the Union address was his 2019 executive order targeting them. In the Democratic debates, candidates have railed […]

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Trump’s Policy on New York’s ‘Trusted Travelers’ Is Unconstitutional

The Department of Homeland Security recently decided to bar New York residents from federal programs that allow “trusted travelers” expedited transit through airports and border checkpoints. The Trump administration is defending the decision as a rational response to New York’s enactment of a law denying federal immigration authorities free access to the state’s motor vehicle […]

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In Bipartisan Bid to Restrain Trump, Senate Passes Iran War Powers Resolution

WASHINGTON — The Senate voted on Thursday to require President Trump seek congressional authorization before taking further military action against Iran, as Democrats joined forces with eight Republicans to try to rein in the president’s war-making powers weeks after he escalated hostilities with Tehran. The bipartisan vote, 55 to 45, amounted to a rare attempt […]

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This Lawmaker Wants to Remove the Words ‘Illegal Alien’ From the Law

Susan Lontine, a Democratic state representative in Colorado, knows well how some use the term “illegal alien” to disparage migrants. Her district in Denver contains many immigrant communities, and she recoils when she hears President Trump use the term in speeches or catches conservative colleagues uttering it in Statehouse hallways. What Ms. Lontine did not […]

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Trump Has Abused This Power. And He Will Again if He’s Not Stopped.

This weekend will mark one year since President Trump declared a sham emergency at the southern border to secure money for a wall Congress refused to fund. During that time, federal judges in three cases have declared the president’s move illegal, and Congress has made history by twice voting to terminate the emergency. Yet the […]

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Crackdown on 5,000 Reckless Drivers: Take Safety Course or Lose Car

A driver in Brooklyn with eight violations for speeding or running a red light killed a 5-year-old girl and a 1-year-old boy. An 85-year-old woman was killed by another Brooklyn driver with 10 speeding violations and two red-light violations. In Manhattan, a driver with two speeding tickets crushed a bicycle courier. New York City is […]

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Swiss Vote to Penalize Public Homophobia

Swiss voters agreed on Sunday to penalize public homophobia, greenlighting an amendment to an antidiscrimination law that had not provided protection for lesbians, gay men and bisexual people. The amendment, which was years in the making, was challenged by opponents arguing that it would stifle freedom of expression. Voters were asked in a referendum whether […]

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