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Tag Archive: Congressional Oversight

Protecting a Free and Open Internet: My testimony before the House Commerce Committee

The free movement of data across borders is critical to economic growth, has benefits for data security, and promotes privacy, speech, and associational rights.  Yet, increasingly states are adopting a range of measures that restrict data flows to the United States and elsewhere and adopting costly data localization mandates, pursuant to which companies must store data locally.   continue »

It’s Time to Pass Legislation Governing a Key Part of the Government’s Hacking Policy

An example of the splash screen from the Petya malware that was suspected of relying on an exploit developed by the U.S. National Security Agency.

It’s well known that government is in the computer hacking business and, we would argue, that under the right circumstances, has legitimate reasons to stay in it.…   continue »

Norms Watch: Democracy, the Trump Administration, and Reactions to It (September 22-September 29)

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Trump again stirs up racial divisions, this time by weighing in on NFL stars’ protests.


All About That Base: Trump Goes To War With NFL Over Racial Justice Protests

Trump spent this past weekend stirring up racial divisions in a sustained attack on NFL players kneeling in protest during the pre-game national anthem that was reportedly a deliberate nod to his electoral base.  continue »

Opponents of Closing Sec. 702’s Backdoor Search Loophole are Distorting How the Fix Works

With less than five months to go until Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) expires, we still do not have a clear path forward to a reauthorization that would also address the law’s substantial problems.  A major reason for this is an impasse on what to do about the law’s most significant flaw: that it permits the government to seek out the content of Americans’ communications that have been swept up through Section 702 without any suspicion of wrongdoing, let alone a warrant, a problem known as “the backdoor search loophole.” Unfortunately, opponents of reforming the loophole have either failed to understand how the proposed fix to the loophole would actually work, or are describing it inaccurately in an effort to discredit reform.…   continue »

How the Prospect of Indictment Could Impact the President’s Decision Making


Over the weekend, the New York Times revealed that former Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr concluded that it was “proper, constitutional, and legal for a federal grand jury to indict a sitting president.” Although Starr’s conclusion was previously unknown, there can be little doubt that the President’s team has considered the possibility of an indictment for some time.…   continue »

US-UAE Partnership and Alleged Torture: Recommended Next Steps for the Administration and Congress


An important foreign military partner in our armed conflict against al-Qaida in Yemen—the United Arab Emirates—has faced a series of allegations that it is engaged in systematic torture of detainees in different parts of that country. The US government and individual US officials may be implicated in these abuses under domestic and international law, as Steve Vladeck explained in an analysis for Just Security.…   continue »

About that Executive Privilege “Policy”: Congress Should Call the Bluff



During last week’s hearing of the Senate intelligence committee, Attorney General Jeff Sessions generated withering criticism by repeatedly refusing to answer Senators’ questions about his communications with President Donald J. Trump, including discussion of the President’s decision to fire James Comey as Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.…   continue »