The federal judge who overturned Barack Obama's offshore drilling moratorium reported owning stock in numerous companies involved in the offshore oil industry — including Transocean, which leased the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig to BP prior to its April 20 explosion in the Gulf of Mexico — according to 2008 financial disclosure reports.
The Supreme Court on Monday upheld a law that bars Americans from providing support to foreign terrorist groups, rejecting arguments that it violated constitutional rights of free speech and association. The decision came in the first test to reach the Supreme Court after the September 11, 2001, attacks of a case pitting the right of U.S. citizens to speak and associate freely against the government's efforts to fight terrorism.
In a victory for the Obama administration, the justices voted, 6-3, to reverse a ruling by a U.S. appeals court that declared parts of the law unconstitutionally vague.
A panel of federal judges ruled on Wednesday that New York City can keep secret about 1,800 pages of records detailing the Police Department’s surveillance and tactical strategy in advance of protests at the 2004 Republican National Convention in New York.
In reversing a lower court decision, the three-judge panel of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit sided with the department’s position that releasing the documents could compromise future surveillance efforts, including those centered on terrorism suspects.
Some federal judges and court workers occupy courthouses that are bigger than necessary, according to a preliminary report by government auditors.
The Government Accountability Office revealed last week that 27 of the 33 federal courthouses built by the General Services Administration since 2000 contain about 3.6 million square feet of extra space -- or 28 percent of the total federal court space built in the last decade. The excess space has soaked up $835 million in construction costs and $51 million in annual rent and operations costs, the GAO said.
Botched (wrong address or wrong person) raids or raids where it appears excessive force has been used are certainly not a new phenomenon, as journalist Radley Balko documented in his 2006 study, "Overkill: The Rise of Paramilitary Policing in America." But most raids gone bad do not get such wide public or media attention.
Obama said he had directed government agencies to offer a number of new benefits to the families of gay and lesbian federal employees, including family assistance services, hardship transfers and relocation expenses.
His directive builds on a move he made last year to offer healthcare benefits, sick leave and medical evacuation for same-sex partners of federal employees.
In the past, the court has said the "burden rests on the government" to show that a crime suspect has "knowingly and intelligently waived" his rights.
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