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Category Archives: Congress

The Post-Roe Battleground for Abortion Pills Will Be Your Mailbox

Wired – “If regulation of abortion access falls to the states, it will unleash legal havoc over pregnancy-ending medications that are shipped across state lines. The draft legal opinion leaked from the Supreme Court that promises to overturn the right to abortion in the United States says it will “return that authority to the people and their elected representatives,” making abortion access each state’s decision. Having had some time to absorb it, legal experts warn that’s a recipe for chaos—especially for abortions performed via medications, since pills cross state lines via the federally-protected US Mail. Medication abortion—which constitutes ending a pregnancy in its first trimester with a regimen of one or two drugs—has already been a target for red-state legislatures. It accounts for more than half the abortions in the US, and so anti-abortion campaigners accurately perceive it as an end run around restrictions on surgical abortions. During the pandemic, access to the drugs actually got easier: The Food and Drug Administration allowed women who wanted them to make telehealth appointments, rather than the medical office visits some states insist on, and then to receive the pills by mail. The agency made that policy permanent in December. If Roe v. Wade is nullified, that changes. Legislatures in 26 states have indicated they will either ban abortion entirely or restrict it to so early in pregnancy that the procedure becomes essentially inaccessible. Thirteen states have teed up trigger laws that would enact bans or restrictions immediately when Roe is overturned. Seven have banned the use of telehealth plus mailed drugs for abortions. Legislators in Louisiana have proposed, and ones in Tennessee have passed, criminal penalties for providing abortion medications by mail…”

See also Fast Company: Why corporate America is afraid to talk about abortion – “Over the past three months, we asked nearly 200 companies their stance on abortion access. Only 15 responded.”

Confronting Misinformation in the Age of Cheap Speech

LawFare: “In 1995, Eugene Volokh published a law review article in which he predicted that the rapidly growing internet would “dramatically reduce the costs of distributing speech” and that “the new media order that these technologies will bring will be much more democratic and diverse than the environment we see now.” The concept, which Volokh… Continue Reading

Watch Recordings of Law Library Webinars and Events You May Have Missed

In Custodia Legis: “Over the past six months, the Law Library has held many webinars on topics concerning foreign, comparative, and international law, Law Library collections, as well as our recurring orientations on how to research U.S. case law, federal statutes, and federal regulations. The Law Library also presented its annual Supreme Court Fellows Lecture and Human Rights Day… Continue Reading

Finding Legislative Information on Topics of Interest Using the Library of Congress

Teaching with the Library of Congress: “The best place to start for insights into the workings of the U.S. Congress is Congress.gov. Congress.gov is the official source of information on Congress, and includes searchable records of legislation from 1973 to the present. For example, a quick search on “technology” for the current Congress produces a… Continue Reading

Federal Agencies’ Use of Open Source Data and Related Threat Products Prior to January 6, 2021

GAO – Capital Attack – Federal Agencies’ Use of Open Source Data and Related Threat Products Prior to January 6, 2021: “Several federal agencies used “open source” data—social media posts and other publicly available information—to obtain information about the potential for violence at the U.S. Capitol prior to January 6, 2021.Agencies developed reports for situational… Continue Reading

FY2023 Budget Documents: Internet and GPO Availability

CRS Report – FY2023 Budget Documents: Internet and GPO Availability Updated May 4, 2022: “Every year the President submits a series of volumes to Congress containing the President’s proposed budget for the coming fiscal year. The President’s submission is required on or after the first Monday in January, but no later than the first Monday… Continue Reading

ACS Reaction to Draft SCOTUS Opinion on Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health

American Constitution Society, May 3, 2022, Washington, D.C. – “Today, Roe remains the law of the land and until a final decision is handed down by the Supreme Court, those seeking abortion care should not be deterred from accessing the healthcare they need. If the draft opinion published last night by Politico is ultimately issued… Continue Reading

National Intelligence Report Shows FBI Warrantlessly Searched Americans’ Data Millions Of Times Last Year

Tech Dirt: “Eight years ago, prompted by the Snowden revelations (and Senator Ron Wyden’s persistent questions), then-National Intelligence Director James Clapper finally provided the public with some insight into the FBI’s warrantless searches of Americans’ data collected (supposedly inadvertently) by the NSA. The report delivered to Sen. Wyden was surprisingly redaction-free. But that didn’t mean… Continue Reading

Neutral bots probe political bias on social media

Chen, W., Pacheco, D., Yang, KC. et al. Neutral bots probe political bias on social media. Nat Commun 12, 5580 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-021-25738-6 [Open Access] “Social media platforms attempting to curb abuse and misinformation have been accused of political bias. We deploy neutral social bots who start following different news sources on Twitter, and track them… Continue Reading

Trump’s Chief of Staff – texts track effort to overturn election 2022

“CNN has obtained 2,319 text messages that former President Donald Trump’s White House chief of staff Mark Meadows sent and received between Election Day 2020 and President Joe Biden’s January 20, 2021 inauguration. The vast trove of texts, which Meadows selectively provided to the House committee investigating the January 6 attack on the US Capitol, offers the most revealing… Continue Reading

Arms Control and Nonproliferation: A Catalog of Treaties and Agreements

CRS Report – Arms Control and Nonproliferation: A Catalog of Treaties and Agreements, August 25, 2022: “Arms control and nonproliferation efforts are two of the tools that the United States has occasionally used to implement its national security strategy. Although some believe these tools do little to restrain the behavior of U.S. adversaries, while doing… Continue Reading

Digital Wallets and Selected Policy Issues

CRS In Focus – Digital Wallets and Selected Policy Issues, April 18, 2022: “Digital Wallet Landscape – A digital wallet is a software application that stores payment or account details to facilitate traditional payments that use bank and credit card details and/or cryptocurrency transactions. In addition, wallets facilitate peer-to-peer transfers, which have grown rapidly in… Continue Reading