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    (CNN)Facebook's plans to launch a version of Instagram for children under the age of 13 continues to get backlash.On Monday, 44 attorneys general signed a letter addressed to Facebook (FB) CEO Mark Zuckerberg, urging him to scrap plans for an Instagram intended for younger users, citing mental health and privacy concerns. The letter comes less than a month after child safety groups and Congress expressed similar concerns."Use of social media can be detrimental to the health and well-being of children, who are not equipped to navigate the challenges of having a social media account," the latest letter said. "Further, Facebook has historically failed to protect the welfare of children on its platforms. The attorneys general have an interest in protecting our youngest citizens, and Facebook's plans to create a platform where kids under the age of 13 are encouraged to share content online is contrary to that interest."Facebook claims such a service would give parents greater control over their children's online activity. "As every parent knows, kids are already online. We want to improve this situation by delivering experiences that...
    Loading the player... A bipartisan group of 44 attorneys general has written to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg urging him to drop company plans for a version of Instagram for children under the age of 13, Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey announced Monday. The attorneys general in the letter said they are concerned about social media’s effects on the physical and emotional well-being of children, the potential for increased cyberbullying, possible vulnerability to online predators, and what they called Facebook’s “checkered record” in protecting children on its platforms. “It appears that Facebook is not responding to a need, but instead creating one, as this platform appeals primarily to children who otherwise do not or would not have an Instagram account,” said the letter, signed by the attorneys general of 40 states, the District of Columbia and three U.S. territories. Read More: Facebook data on more than 500 million accounts found on hackers site The Instagram app logo is displayed on an iPhone on August 3, 2016 in London, England. (Photo by Carl Court/Getty Images) Children under 13 are technically not allowed to...
    SACRAMENTO (CBS / AP) — A bipartisan group of 44 attorneys general, including California Attorney General Rob Bonta, has written to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg urging him to drop company plans for a version of Instagram for children under the age of 13. Led by Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey, the attorneys general in the letter said they are concerned about social media’s effects on the physical and emotional well-being of children, the potential for increased cyberbullying, possible vulnerability to online predators, and what they called Facebook’s “checkered record” in protecting children on its platforms. READ MORE: Newsom Unveils States COVID Recovery Plan Fueled By Unprecedented $75.7 Budget Surplus “It appears that Facebook is not responding to a need, but instead creating one, as this platform appeals primarily to children who otherwise do not or would not have an Instagram account,” said the letter, signed by the attorneys general of 40 states, the District of Columbia and three U.S. territories. Children under 13 are technically not allowed to use the Instagram app in its current form due to federal privacy regulations....
    Almost every attorney general in the United States on Monday came out against Facebook's plans to launch an Instagram app for children, citing the technology giant's history of failing to protect children's welfare on its platforms. The attorneys general from 44 states, including California, where Facebook and Instagram are based, sent a letter to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg asking him to abandon his plans for the new platform, saying that it would be detrimental to the physical, emotional, and mental well-being of children. Facebook has been exploring creating a new Instagram platform for children for some time, according to news reports in March based on internal documents. “Without a doubt, this is a dangerous idea that risks the safety of our children and puts them directly in harm’s way,” New York Attorney General Letitia James said in a statement Monday. "There are too many concerns to let Facebook move forward with this ill-conceived idea, which is why we are calling on the company to abandon its launch of Instagram Kids," she added. HOUSE DEMOCRATS LOOK TO MAKE SOCIAL MEDIA PLATFORMS...
    In this article FBFacebook co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg testifies before the House Financial Services Committee in the Rayburn House Office Building on Capitol Hill October 23, 2019 in Washington, DC. Zuckerberg testified about Facebook's proposed cryptocurrency Libra, how his company will handle false and misleading information by political leaders during the 2020 campaign and how it handles its users’ data and privacy.Chip Somodevilla | Getty Images News | Getty ImagesAttorneys general from 44 states and territories urged Facebook to abandon its plans to create an Instagram service for kids under the age of 13, citing detrimental health effects of social media on kids and Facebook's reportedly speckled past of protecting children on its platform. Monday's letter follows questioning from federal lawmakers who have also expressed concern over social media's impact on children. The topic was a major theme that emerged from lawmakers at a House hearing in March with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Google CEO Sundar Pichai and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey. Republican staff for that committee later highlighted online protection for kids as the main principle lawmakers should...
    A coalition of Democratic state attorneys general sued the Trump administration on Monday, seeking to block next month's implementation of a rule overturning Obama-era protections for transgender people against sex discrimination in health care. New York Attorney General Letitia James, leading the group of 23 states, said the change affecting the Affordable Care Act's anti-discrimination section would give health care providers and insurance companies carte blanche to refuse treatment based on factors such as gender identity. James also raised concerns that women could be denied access to abortion under the revision, which takes effect Aug. 18, and that non-English speakers will be deprived of information through a change to requirements that insurers print materials in a variety of languages. "This is just the latest attempt by President Trump and his administration to unlawfully chip away at health care for Americans after failing to repeal the ACA time after time," James told reporters in a conference call announcing the lawsuit. The lawsuit, filed in Manhattan federal court against the Department of Health and Human Services, secretary Alex Azar and civil...
    Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall became the first earlier this week to withdraw his state’s membership from the National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG) for alleged liberal-leaning positions. "I can’t justify spending taxpayer dollars to fund an organization that seems to be going further and further left," Marshall told Alabama media outlet the Yellowhammer News. Fox News could not immediately reach the attorney general for comment, but the NAAG lists itself as a "nonpartisan" national forum the includes memberships from all 50 states along with American Samoa, Northern Mariana Islands, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, Puerto Rico and Washington, D.C. ALABAMA GOV. IVEY SIGNS BAN ON TRANSGENDER ATHLETES Yellowhammer News alleged Marshall is not alone in feeling frustrated with the political leanings of one of the country’s oldest attorney general associations. The local news outlet claimed Republican members of the NAAG have been annoyed by what they see as progressive agendas being pushed to encourage congressional spending and increased government regulation. Fox News could not immediately reach the NAAG for comment on these claims. The NAAG is currently chaired by Washington, D.C. Attorney General...
    Republican attorneys general are hitting the Biden administration with a barrage of lawsuits even before the end of its first 100 days, foreshadowing what could be a litigious four years between President Biden and the top state law enforcement officials.  The effort comes after years of Democratic attorneys general consistently taking former President Trump to court, occasionally bringing cases all the way to the Supreme Court. Indeed, Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra, who was the California attorney general during Trump's term, celebrated filing his 100th lawsuit against the Trump administration in August.  Now the tables are turned with a Democrat in the White House and Republicans trying to use the courts to their advantage.  President Biden speaks about the economy in the State Dinning Room of the White House, Friday, Feb. 5, 2021, in Washington. Biden's presidency isn't yet 100 days old and he's already faced a barrage of litigation from Republican attorneys general.  (AP Photo/Alex Brandon) GOP REPS ASK BIDEN TO HALT PROVISION IN COVID STIMULUS BANNING STATES FROM USING MONEY FOR TAX CUTS The cases include a suit by...
                      by Bruce Walker  Citing the “grave threat posed by Enbridge’s unlawful operation of its pipelines in the Straits of Mackinac,” 28 entities filed friend of the court briefs in support of Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel’s motion to remand in State of Michigan, et al v Enbridge Energy, et al. Four Native American tribes, the attorneys general of 16 states and the District of Columbia, six environmental organizations and the Great Lakes Business Network, and two state governors filed briefs expressing support of the attorney general’s efforts to ensure the lawsuit her office filed last November remains in Ingham County Circuit Court. At issue is Nessel seeking to enforce the Michigan Department of Natural Resources Director Dan Eichinger and Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s revocation and termination of Enbridge’s 1953 easement to operate its Line 5 pipelines beneath the Straits of Mackinac. Enbridge filed a motion in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan, claiming the state of Michigan has no jurisdiction in the matter. Enbridge’s Notice of Removal asserts only...
    From Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr: ATLANTA, GA –A multistate coalition of 20 attorneys general today wrote to President Joe Biden and congressional leaders to voice strong concerns, and opposition to, the recent steps towards packing the U.S. Supreme Court. Judicial independence is a core tenet of our judicial system and the bulwark upholding our rights and liberties. Recent actions by some members of Congress and President Biden threaten the independence of our federal judicial system and the rule of law. “Court packing could destroy judicial independence and transform judges into political actors,” said Attorney General Chris Carr. “The independence of the judiciary is too important to jeopardize just so one party can achieve its political goals, and my colleagues and I strongly urge President Biden to abandon this horrible idea.” The letter signed by the multistate coalition of attorneys general describes the serious concerns held about Congress’ intent to pack the U.S. Supreme Court. After filing a bill to do just that days after the President announced the Executive Order...
    The chairman of the top outside group dedicated to electing Republican attorneys general has resigned his position in the wake of a show of force by rivals from other states, months after it supported a rally with then-President TrumpDonald TrumpUS gives examples of possible sanctions relief to Iran GOP lawmaker demands review over FBI saying baseball shooting was 'suicide by cop' House passes bill aimed at stopping future Trump travel ban MORE that turned into an insurrectionist attack on the U.S. Capitol. Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr (R) last week stepped down as chairman of the Republican Attorneys General Association (RAGA), citing a “significant difference of opinion” with the group’s strategic direction. He is the latest in a string of departures from the organization, including its executive director, Adam Piper, who resigned under what sources said was pressure from the group in the days after the Jan. 6 insurrection. Carr cited that rally, which a nonprofit arm of the RAGA promoted in a robocall to supporters encouraging them to attend in the days leading up to Jan. 6. The robocall...
    Savannah Rychcik April 22, 2021 0 Comments A group of 20 Republican state attorneys general are making their opposition to expanding the Supreme Court known. The GOP attorneys general penned a letter to President Joe Biden, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) calling efforts to expand the Supreme Court a “naked political power grab.” They wrote, “We believe that such actions will seriously undermine our constitutional system, the public’s confidence in our courts, and the rule of law.” The attorneys general noted Alexander Hamilton said in the Federalist Papers, “The complete independence of the courts of justice is peculiarly essential in a limited Constitution.” They explained, “From the beginning of our Republic until the present, there has been a robust history of judicial independence.” Mentioning President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s attempt to “pack the Court,” the Republicans added, “The Senate recognized the importance of an independent judiciary and the harm that such an action would cause.” Additionally, the attorneys general argued, “The Justices of the Supreme...
    Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody and 19 other Republican state attorneys general sent a letter to President Biden and congressional leaders opposing efforts to alter the makeup of the Supreme Court. Biden has already announced the formation of the Presidential Commission on the Supreme Court of the United States, which will explore potential court reforms and address issues, including the size of the court. Days later, Democratic lawmakers introduced a bill to expand the court from nine justices to 13. GOP SENATORS SAY DDEMS TRYING TO 'RIG' SCOTUS THROUGH COURT-PACKING, ASK BIDEN TO REIN IN PARTY'S 'CRAZIES' "We believe that such actions will seriously undermine our constitutional system, the public’s confidence in our courts, and the rule off law," the attorneys general said in their letter, which was addressed to Biden, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., House Minority Leader Rep. Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky. The letter pointed to why the country’s Founding Fathers made a point of having an independent judiciary. "The Framers created a strict separation of the judicial...
    A coalition of 20 Republican state attorneys general are demanding that President Biden and congressional leadership not expand the Supreme Court, a proposal that has gained increased support among progressives.  The attorneys general expressed their opposition in a Thursday letter sent to Biden, Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiOvernight Health Care: Biden: US to hit 200M vaccine target on Wednesday | House Dems to unveil drug pricing measure ahead of Biden package | FDA finds multiple failures at J&J plant House Dems to unveil drug pricing measure ahead of Biden package House Democrats eye passing DC statehood bill for second time MORE (D-Calif.), House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin McCarthyHouse Republicans deliver a commonsense climate plan The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - After historic verdict, Chauvin led away in handcuffs Waters on Chauvin guilty verdict: 'I'm not celebrating, I'm relieved' MORE (R-Calif.), Senate Majority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerOn The Money: Yellen touts 'whole-of-economy' plan to fight climate change | Senate GOP adopts symbolic earmark ban, digs in on debt limit Hillicon Valley: Tech companies duke it out at Senate hearing |...
    (CNN)The role that Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison played in the conviction of former police officer Derek Chauvin for murdering George Floyd has given Democrats a potent argument for redoubling the party's investment in state attorney general races for years to come.Democrats have long been seen as under-investing in down ballot races, ceding ground to Republicans in races ranging from city council to state representative and state attorney general. Much of the most recent local Republican uprising happened amid former President Barack Obama's administration, with the GOP investing in these lesser-known races and winning hundreds of seats across the country.But Democratic attorneys general across the country, especially those tasked with electing more Democrats to the top law enforcement jobs, believe Ellison's leadership in the Chauvin case -- he managed the team, outlined the strategy early in the case and served as one of the trial's public faces -- could become an inflection point in the way money and attention flow to their races."Two words: Elections matter," said Nevada Attorney General Aaron Ford, co-chair of the Democratic Attorneys General Association. "The...
    Republican attorneys general (AGs) across the country are prepared to fight the recently introduced court-packing legislation, as indicated by their vocal statements of opposition to it, endorsements of the Keep Nine amendment, and vows to explore legal routes to challenge the legislation. In interviews with Breitbart News, several AGs expressed they were firmly against the court-packing bill, unveiled Thursday as the Judiciary Act of 2021 by Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY), Sen. Ed Markey (D-MA), and other Democrats. “This is an effort for the Democrats to try to add numbers to the Court to be able to validate the most liberal agenda that we’ve seen out of Congress in clearly my lifetime,” Alabama AG Steve Marshall told Breitbart News. Missouri AG Eric Schmitt called it “a total affront to our Republic” and “counterintuitive to the Founders’ vision.” Talk of court packing first resurfaced last fall amid the swift confirmation process of Justice Amy Coney Barrett, the third justice appointed by former President Donald Trump. Barrett’s appointment fueled Democrat outrage, prompting leftist calls for court-packing as party leaders decried Trump and the...
    Twenty-two Republican Attorneys General wrote a letter to Congress and the Biden administration, contending Washington, D.C. cannot become a state through legislation but only through a Constitutional amendment. “If this Congress passes and President Biden signs this Act into law, we will use every legal tool at our disposal to defend the United States Constitution and the rights of our states from this unlawful effort to provide statehood to the District of Columbia,” Fox News reported. “Accordingly, not only does Congress lack the authority to create an entirely new state out of the District, but it also does not have the authority to reduce the size of the District to the equivalent of a few federal buildings and surrounding parks,” the letter concluded. The letter comes as Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) has introduced H.R. 51 to shrink the district while transitioning the vacated area into a state, dubbed the “State of Washington, Douglass Commonwealth.” Republicans regard D.C. statehood as a naked power grab, and many legal scholars are confident the Supreme Court would strike down D.C. statehood as unconstitutional for the...
    Originally Published by: Biden wants to withdraw all 2,500 US troops from Afghanistan by 9/11 GOP reps announce constitutional amendment to keep Supreme Court at 9 Biden proposes summit with Putin in coming months Republican attorneys general from around the country came together in opposition to congressional Democrats’ efforts to make Washington, DC, a state, sending a letter to President Biden and congressional leaders claiming that the proposed legislation is unconstitutional. Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton, D-DC, introduced H.R. 51, also known as the Washington, DC Admission Act on Jan. 4. The bill calls for shrinking the independent district serving as the nation’s capital, while turning the surrounding area into a new state to be known as the State of Washington, Douglass Commonwealth, after abolitionist Frederick Douglass. “If this Congress passes and President Biden signs this Act into law, we will use every legal tool at our disposal to defend the United States Constitution and the rights of our states from this unlawful effort to provide statehood to the District of Columbia,” read the letter, which was signed by 22...
                      by Thomas Catenacci  Republican attorneys general are determined to mount numerous legal challenges against President Joe Biden, creating a formidable roadblock to the president’s agenda. In less than three months since President Joe Biden was sworn into office, Republican states have waged war on his agenda, suing the administration on climate change, energy, immigration and taxation policy. But the conservative attorneys general who started filing the lawsuits in March said they aren’t done yet and expect to continue challenging the administration in court. “We are sharpening the pencils and filling up the inkwells,” Louisiana Attorney General and former Republican Attorneys General Association Chairman Jeff Landry, who is leading two of the ongoing lawsuits against the Biden administration, told the Daily Caller News Foundation. Landry said there will be plenty of legal action and success in court against the president and his administration. Montana Attorney General Austin Knudsen said Republican attorneys general believe that with a gridlocked Congress, states are the last line of defense for Constitutional rights. The attorney general added that...
    Republican attorneys general are determined to mount numerous legal challenges against President Joe Biden, creating a formidable roadblock to the president’s agenda. “When you step in on day one and start issuing edicts and executive orders like King George, I and a lot of other conservative Republicans are going to start having problems,” Montana Attorney General Austin Knudsen told the Daily Caller News Foundation. In less than three months since President Joe Biden was sworn into office, Republican states have waged war on his agenda, suing the administration on climate change, energy, immigration and taxation policy. Republican attorneys general are determined to mount numerous legal challenges against President Joe Biden, creating a formidable roadblock to the president’s agenda. In less than three months since President Joe Biden was sworn into office, Republican states have waged war on his agenda, suing the administration on climate change, energy, immigration and taxation policy. But the conservative attorneys general who started filing the lawsuits in March said they aren’t done yet and expect to continue challenging the administration in court....
    State attorneys general are signaling that they may take legal action against President Biden's new gun-control policies announced Thursday. The president on Thursday announced a new set of executive actions and legislative proposals aimed at strengthening gun control, describing gun violence in the country as "a public health crisis" and adding that the administration's actions do not imfringe upon Americans' Second Amendment rights. BIDEN ON THE SECOND AMENDMENT: 'NO AMENDMENT IS ABSOLUTE' Attorneys general from Arkansas, West Virginia and Montana appear to disagree. "As a Christian, pro-life, gun carrying, conservative mama, you bet I’m not going to let Joe Biden take our Second Amendment rights away with just a simple stroke of the pen," Arkansas Attorney General and 2022 gubernatorial candidate Leslie Rutledge said in a video posted to Twitter Friday. "As attorney general, I will push back against Biden's gun grab." West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey said the Second Amendment is one of the "most important priorities" for West Virginia in a Thursday statement. BIDEN FALSELY CLAIMS GUN MANUFACTURERS 'CAN'T BE SUED' "I will not allow the far left to run roughshod over our...
    Attorney General Chris Carr has joined a 14-state coalition of attorneys general in sending a letter to U.S. Senate leaders opposing a pro-union bill. The Protecting the Right to Organize Act of 2021 (PRO Act) would negate state right-to-work laws and require workers to pay union dues in order to keep their jobs. “Georgia is a right-to-work state, and we have long preserved the ability of employees to speak for themselves, make informed decisions and work without being forced to pay fees to third parties,” said Attorney General Chris Carr. “The PRO Act will impair the rights of employees and the rights of private employers, and we are seeking to put a stop to the enactment of this misguided bill.” The letter from the attorneys general points out that unions have long fought right-to-work laws, but the U.S. Supreme Court has repeatedly rejected union arguments that tried to overturn them. For example, in a 1949 case, Lincoln Federal Labor Union No. 19129 v. Northwestern Iron & Metal Co, a union claimed that right-to-work...
    Viewers watching the trial of a former Minneapolis officer charged with murder in George Floyd ‘s death may be struck by the array of prosecutors taking turns presenting their case. The choice of who does what is no accident. While Derek Chauvin ’s attorney, Eric Nelson, works alone, the prosecution is being handled by two assistant attorneys general, Matthew Frank and Erin Eldridge, and two outside lawyers, Jerry Blackwell and Steve Schleicher. Ten more are working behind the scenes, many for free. Experts agree the roles played by prosecutors are based on the skill sets each brings, but appearances matter, too. WHY DID BLACKWELL GIVE THE OPENING STATEMENT? The undercurrent of racial tension — a white police officer accused of killing a Black man — can’t be ignored. Blackwell is a prominent Black civil rights attorney and one of the founders of the Minnesota Association of Black Lawyers. Last year, he won a posthumous pardon for a Black man wrongly convicted of rape before the infamous Duluth lynchings of 1920. But law professors following the case said it’s Blackwell’s unique...
    Viewers watching the trial of a former Minneapolis officer charged with murder in George Floyd ‘s death may be struck by the array of prosecutors taking turns presenting their case. The choice of who does what is no accident. While Derek Chauvin ’s attorney, Eric Nelson, works alone, the prosecution is being handled by two assistant attorneys general, Matthew Frank and Erin Eldridge, and two outside lawyers, Jerry Blackwell and Steve Schleicher. Ten more are working behind the scenes, many for free. Experts agree the roles played by prosecutors are based on the skill sets each brings, but appearances matter, too. WHY DID BLACKWELL GIVE THE OPENING STATEMENT? The undercurrent of racial tension — a white police officer accused of killing a Black man — can’t be ignored. Blackwell is a prominent Black civil rights attorney and one of the founders of the Minnesota Association of Black Lawyers. Last year, he won a posthumous pardon for a Black man wrongly convicted of rape before the infamous Duluth lynchings of 1920. But law professors following the case said it’s Blackwell’s unique...
    CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — Attorneys general from 13 states sued President Joe Biden’s administration on Wednesday over a rule in the federal stimulus that bars states from using relief money to offset tax cuts. The filing in U.S. District Court in Alabama asks judges to strike down the provision in the wide-ranging relief act signed by Biden that prohibits states from using $195 billion of federal aid “to either directly or indirectly offset a reduction” in net tax revenue. The restriction could apply through 2024. The coalition, which includes one Democratic attorney general, is concerned the provision can construe any tax cut as taking advantage of the pandemic relief funds. A bigger group of 21 Republican attorneys general earlier this month wrote a letter seeking clarification from Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, who is named in the new lawsuit. The department at the time said the provision isn’t meant as a blanket prohibition on tax cuts. States can still offset tax reductions through other means. “Nothing in the Act prevents States from enacting a broad variety of tax cuts,” Yellen wrote...
    The Democratic attorneys general for 12 states have demanded Facebook and Twitter 'take immediate steps' to stop the spread of what they say is false information about COVID-19 vaccines on the social media sites. In a letter to Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg and Twitter's Jack Dorsey, the attorneys general said on Wednesday that 'anti-vaxxers' lacking medical expertise and often motivated by financial gain have used the platforms to downplay the danger of COVID-19 and exaggerate the risks of vaccination.  They accused the social media giants of doing too little to stop people from using their platforms to spread the false information that coronavirus vaccines are unsafe.  They called on both companies to enforce their own community guidelines by removing or flagging vaccine misinformation.   In a letter to Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg and Twitter's Jack Dorsey, the attorneys general demanded on Wednesday that the companies crack down on anti-vaccine posts The Democratic attorneys general for 12 states, including Connecticut's William Tong, have demanded Facebook and Twitter 'take immediate steps' to stop the spread of what they say is false information about...
    Jeff Landry, Louisiana attorney general, speaks during a news conference outside the Supreme Court in Washington, D.C., on Monday, Sept. 9, 2019.Andrew Harrer | Bloomberg | Getty Images Fourteen states filed suit on Wednesday against President Joe Biden's moratorium on new oil and natural gas leases on public lands and waters. A coalition of 13 states, led by Louisiana, filed one lawsuit on Wednesday. Wyoming filed a separate lawsuit. The states in Louisiana's suit include Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Georgia, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Texas, Utah and West Virginia. All 14 states have Republican attorneys general. "This moratorium might make for a nice headline about fighting climate change, but the real consequences of the action are far from certain and far from uniformly environmentally friendly," the Wyoming lawsuit said.  Biden's order on Jan. 27 to pause new leasing was part of a series of executive actions to address climate change and transition the economy away from fossil fuel production and towards clean energy. In a statement Wednesday, Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry called Biden's order an "aggressive, reckless abuse of...
    A group of Republican attorneys general are suing the Biden administration over its pause of oil and gas leasing on federal lands. The 13 GOP attorneys general, led by Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry, argue barring new drilling permits “contravenes congressional commands” that require federal agencies to advance the speedy and safe development of “abundant energy resources” on public lands. WEST VIRGINIA’S ATTORNEY GENERAL PREPARES FOR BATTLE WITH BIDEN OVER CLIMATE MANDATES In their lawsuit, filed Wednesday in a federal district court, the attorneys general also say blocking drilling permits would forgo the environmental benefits their states experience from the portion of lease sale revenue that is invested in conservation and restoration projects. Landry, for example, claimed canceling lease sales would slash his state’s funding under the Gulf of Mexico Energy Security Act, which uses lease revenues from four Gulf Coast states for coastal restoration projects, by up to $57 million. “By executive fiat, Joe Biden and his administration have single-handedly driven the price of energy up – costing the American people where it hurts most, in their pocketbooks,” Landry...
    Facebook Chairman and CEO Mark Zuckerberg.Erin Scott | Reuters A coalition of 12 state attorneys general on Wednesday called on Facebook and Twitter to enforce their community guidelines and rid their services of misinformation being spread by accounts promoting anti-vaxxing ideas. "Misinformation disseminated via your platforms has increased vaccine hesitancy, which will slow economic recovery and, more importantly, ultimately cause even more unnecessary deaths," the coalition of attorneys general wrote in a letter to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey. The coalition highlights that just 12 accounts and their associated organizations are responsible for 65% of the public anti-vaccine content on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. In particular, the accounts target people of color to discourage them from getting the Covid-19 vaccines, the letter said. The letter comes a day before Zuckerberg, Dorsey and Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai are set to testify before the House Energy and Commerce Committee on the topic of misinformation on their services.VIDEO18:5818:58The big, messy business of content moderation on Facebook, Twitter, YoutubeTech
    Eighteen state attorneys general are calling on Attorney General Merrick GarlandMerrick GarlandDuckworth: Atlanta shootings look 'racially motivated' Biden condemns anti-Asian violence, 'ugly poison' of racism Exclusive: GOP officials offer support for Vanita Gupta MORE to close the “ghost gun” loophole. The group, led by Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro (D), sent a letter to Garland on Monday asking for him to expedite rule making from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) that would treat unfinished frames and receivers the same as fully-finished frames. The letter says that the loophole, called the "80 percent loophole," “allows criminals, domestic abusers, and other individuals who legally cannot possess firearms to evade common-sense gun laws.” “Ghost guns” refer to kits that can easily be purchased be assembled into firearms. They can be sold without background checks, and are untraceable because they have no serial number. The ATF currently doesn’t regulate these kits as firearms “Simply put, this loophole allows unserialized ghost guns to be bought and sold without oversight,” the attorney generals wrote. “This is not a theoretical problem: more...
    into major tech companies just keep on coming. The UK’s competition watchdog is preparing to open one against in the coming months, according to the   The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) reportedly plans to look into whether Facebook harnesses user data to give itself an advantage over rivals in the social media and online advertising markets. The UK may investigate the classified ads service, which the European Commission . The timing and the scope of the CMA investigation could change, however.  Facebook declined to comment to News Brig about the report. Already this year, the CMA has opened investigations into and . Meanwhile, a CMA department called the Digital Markets Unit (DMU) next month. The DMA is tasked with creating and enforcing a code of conduct for major tech companies. The likes of Facebook, Google and Apple aren’t safe from antitrust scrutiny on the other side of the Atlantic. The Federal Trade Commission and dozens of attorneys general in December. They’re looking to unwind Facebook’s purchases of Instagram and WhatsApp. The company has filed to . Google...
                      by Nyamekye Daniel  Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr is among 21 state attorneys general calling on the U.S. Department of Treasury to secure states’ rights to implement tax policies under the American Rescue Plan Act. The attorneys general sent a letter this week to Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, asking her to confirm that provisions in the act do not attempt to strip states of their sovereign authority. They argue language in the act is too broad and could be interpreted as a blanket policy. The provision, according to the letter, prohibits states from using COVID-19 relief funds to “directly or indirectly offset a reduction in … net tax revenue” resulting from state laws or regulations that reduce tax burdens – whether by cutting rates or by giving rebates, deductions, credits “or otherwise.” “As it is written, the American Rescue Plan Act could be used to deny Georgia the ability to cut taxes in any manner for years to come,” Carr said. “That would be unacceptable. In fact, it would amount...
    Twenty-One Republican Attorneys General filed a lawsuit against the Biden Administration Wednesday Over the suspension of the Keystone XL pipeline. The twenty-one Attorneys Genera,l led by Ken Paxton (TX) and Austin Knudsen (MT), filed the suit against President Biden in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas in response to his executive order in January that stopped the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline. In addition to Texas and Montana, the suit is joined by 19 other attorneys general from Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Utah, West Virginia, and Wyoming. The complaint alleged that “This Administration has sought to leverage its power regarding U.S. foreign policy to unilaterally contradict Congress’s stated domestic policy regarding one of the most significant energy projects in a generation: the Keystone XL Pipeline. This he may not do.” Knudsen said in a press release: The power to regulate foreign and interstate commerce belongs to Congress – not the President. This is another example of Joe Biden overstepping his constitutional role to the...
    Washington — A coalition of attorneys general from 21 states sued President Biden and members of his administration for rescinding the permit for the Keystone XL pipeline, seeking to undo the president's attempt to effectively nix the 1,200 mile-long pipeline. Led by the attorneys general of Texas and Montana, the states argued in their complaint that the president exceeded his authority when he issued his executive order January 20 revoking permits for the oil pipeline. The order targeting Keystone was one of several executive actions Mr. Biden has taken since assuming the presidency that focus on the environment and addressing climate change. "Revocation of the Keystone XL pipeline permit is a regulation of interstate and international commerce, which can only be accomplished as any other statute can: through the process of bicameralism and presentment," the states argued in their complaint. "The president lacks the power to enact his 'ambitious plan' to reshape the economy in defiance of Congress's unwillingness to do so." The attorneys general argued Congress set rules for the actions the president can take regarding Keystone, and...
    Bestselling author Ryan Anderson has challenged “enterprising” state attorneys general to investigate Amazon’s banning of his book questioning transgenderism. In a Wednesday op-ed in the Wall Street Journal, Anderson notes the curious timing of Amazon’s digital burning of his book When Harry Became Sally that took place the weekend before the House voted on the radical transgender “Equality Act,” which he publicly criticized. “Why did Amazon suddenly delist my book without warning me or my publisher?” Anderson asks. “Did an advocacy group or elected official reach out to Amazon on the evening of a big vote to ask it to remove a book it had happily sold for three years? An enterprising state attorney general may have ways to find out.” Anderson — a noted scholar and the president of the D.C.-based Ethics and Public Policy Center — says in censoring ideas with which they disagree, Amazon may be guilty of violating a number of laws. “State attorneys general have the authority to investigate Amazon’s conduct to learn whether the company is abusing its vast market power, doing so in a...
    More On: federal government Biden admin misses its own deadline on workplace mask standard Brooklyn’s acting US attorney resigns Cuomo says NY is ‘willing’ to use 2nd COVID vaccine dose as 1st if feds approve Video shows wild confrontation between violent protesters, feds ​Republican attorneys general from 21 states are threatening to sue the Biden administration over a provision in the $1.9 trillion coronavirus stimulus package they say prohibits them from using the funds to offset tax cuts. In a seven-page letter sent to Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen on Monday, the attorneys general ask ​her to assure them that ​”certain provisions of the American Rescue Plan Act​ ​do not attempt to strip States of their core sovereign authority to enact and implement basic tax policy​.” ​They say the prohibition is “unclear, but potentially breathtaking” ​and prevents them from using any of the $350 billion being distributed to state and local governments “to either directly or indirectly offset a reduction in the net tax revenue.” The Republicans, led by the attorneys general of Arizona, Georgia and West Virginia, said the “language​”​ could be...
    Jack Davis, The Western Journal March 17, 2021 0 Comments When a group of Republican state attorneys general read the 600-plus pages of the Democrats’ $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan, they were not happy, especially when they saw a provision buried deep in the text of the legislation that bars states from using the money to reduce taxes. According to the law, states that do not use the money in the way the Biden administration wants have to pay it back. “This language could be read to deny states the ability to cut taxes in any manner whatsoever — even if they would have provided such tax relief with or without the prospect of Covid-19 relief funds,” a group of 21 attorneys general said in a letter Tuesday to Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen. “Absent a more sensible interpretation from your department, this provision would amount to an unprecedented and unconstitutional intrusion on the separate sovereignty of the States through federal usurpation of essentially one half of the State’s fiscal ledgers,” they wrote, meaning a state’s ability to determine the...
    Twenty-one Republican state attorneys general threatened to take “appropriate additional action” unless the Biden administration makes clear that the American Rescue Plan doesn't prevent their states from providing various forms of tax relief if they take federal relief money provided by the bill. Members of the Republican Attorneys General Association requested clarity on a provision in the bill that said states “shall not use the funds … to either directly or indirectly offset a reduction in the net tax revenue," in a letter Tuesday to Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen. “This language could be read to deny States the ability to cut taxes in any manner whatsoever — even if they would have provided such tax relief with or without the prospect of COVID-19 relief funds,” the letter said. BIDEN SIGNS $1.9 TRILLION 'AMERICAN RESCUE PLAN' — HERE'S WHAT'S IN IT If Yellen’s department interprets the language that way, the attorneys general said that "such federal usurpation of state tax policy would represent the greatest attempted invasion of state sovereignty by Congress in the history of...
    21 GOP attorneys general threaten to sue so they can spend COVID relief on tax cuts
    Republican attorneys general in more than a dozen states are threatening legal action against President BidenJoe BidenBiden and Congress must take bold action to prevent violent extremism The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Biden faces GOP's immigration and filibuster offensive Democrats play defense on border crisis MORE's administration over the newly signed $1.9 trillion coronavirus economic relief package, a measure they say is unconstitutional.  In a seven-page letter sent to Treasury Secretary Janet YellenJanet Louise YellenOn The Money: Details on timing of the ,400 stimulus payments Yellen provides signature for paper currency Huge fight looms over raising taxes MORE on Tuesday, the Republican officials argue that the relief package, specifically the $350 billion included within to help states and counties offset the cost of dealing with the pandemic, limits those governments' ability to lower taxes for citizens should they want to.  "Absent a more sensible interpretation from your department, this provision would amount to an unprecedented and unconstitutional intrusion on the separate sovereignty of the States through federal usurpation of essentially one half of the State’s fiscal ledgers," they wrote to Yellen. "We...
    By CUNEYT DIL, Associated Press CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — Republican attorneys general from 21 states are questioning a provision in the $1.9 trillion pandemic rescue plan that bars states from using its funds to offset tax cuts. In a letter to Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen on Monday, they said the prohibition is “unclear, but potentially breathtaking” — airing concerns that any tax cut could be construed as taking advantage of the pandemic relief funds. The attorneys general list over a dozen instances of states currently considering new tax credits or cuts that they believe could be jeopardized simply because of the relief funds. “We ask that you confirm that the American Rescue Plan Act does not prohibit States from generally providing tax relief,” wrote the coalition, led by Georgia, Arizona and West Virginia. The aid plan, approved by Congress in close party-line votes and signed by President Joe Biden last week, includes $195 billion for states, plus separate funds for local governments and schools. White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said Monday that Biden expects the relief funds to not...
    CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — Republican attorneys general from 21 states are questioning a provision in the $1.9 trillion pandemic rescue plan that bars states from using its funds to offset tax cuts. In a letter to Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen on Monday, they said the prohibition is “unclear, but potentially breathtaking” — airing concerns that any tax cut could be construed as taking advantage of the pandemic relief funds. The attorneys general list over a dozen instances of states currently considering new tax credits or cuts that they believe could be jeopardized simply because of the relief funds. “We ask that you confirm that the American Rescue Plan Act does not prohibit States from generally providing tax relief,” wrote the coalition, led by Georgia, Arizona and West Virginia. The aid plan, approved by Congress in close party-line votes and signed by President Joe Biden last week, includes $195 billion for states, plus separate funds for local governments and schools. White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said Monday that Biden expects the relief funds to not go...
    President Biden’s pick for Health and Human Services secretary, Xavier Becerra, received praise from two GOP attorneys general he worked with during his time as California attorney general, as Republicans in the Senate push to torpedo his nomination. Becerra, if confirmed, would be the nation’s first Latino secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services. He is expected to face a final Senate vote on his nomination in the coming days after the Senate Finance Committee voted on his nomination last week, ending in a tie along party lines. REPUBLICANS SLAM BIDEN'S HS PICK BECERRA AS 'DISASTER FOR CALIFORNIA' Becerra’s nomination is now up to the Senate majority or minority leader to bring a motion to discharge the nomination for a vote by the full Senate. Republicans trying to sink Becerra's confirmation slam his lack of medical experience and his support for abortion access. Conservative groups are dishing out hundreds of thousands of dollars into ads to pressure moderate Democrats not to support him.  But several attorneys general have come out in support of Becerra, touting his bipartisanship and cooperation on a number of issues...
    BOISE, Idaho (AP) — When the Texas attorney general sued to invalidate Joe Biden’s presidential victory in some states despite no evidence of widespread fraud, many said it had no chance. But among Republicans, particularly in ultra-conservative Idaho, it was a fealty test to Donald Trump, and nearly every top-level Republican in Idaho indicated their support. The exception? Attorney General Lawrence Wasden, who declined to join 17 other GOP attorneys general in the legal action in December. He cited his respect for states rights and said he wouldn’t appreciate others meddling in Idaho elections. It was the last straw for a Republican-dominated Legislature long frustrated by Wasden. Now, lawmakers are trying to significantly defund his office by removing the attorney general as the primary defender of state agencies. If the effort succeeds, opponents say, it would essentially create a slush fund for political allies and Republican lawyers, costing the state millions of dollars in legal fees and possibly more if it loses in court. It’s another example of the GOP turning on its own elected officials deemed not sufficiently...
    Seth D. DuCharme, acting U.S. attorney for the Brooklyn-based Eastern District of New York, announced on Monday that he is resigning his post effective March 19.  DuCharme, the chief federal law enforcement officer for the district comprising Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island and Nassau and Suffolk counties, had been on the job for less than eight months. He was appointed July 10, 2020 by former U.S. Attorney General William Barr.  Reports published last month said that the Biden administration was expected to ask all Trump-era U.S. attorneys to resign. The changeover of U.S. attorneys is routine with a new administration — for example, in 2017 former U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions asked 46 Obama-appointed U.S. attorneys to submit their registrations.
                      by Bethany Blankley  Twenty Republican attorneys general argue that HR1, the “For the People Act,” which passed the U.S. House late in the night on Wednesday, is unconstitutional. The chief legal officers of 20 states sent a letter to the leaders of the U.S. House and Senate, arguing that both the House and Senate versions of the bill, which deals with federal election law, “betray several constitutional deficiencies and alarming mandates.” The bill “would invert that constitutional structure, commandeer state resources, confuse and muddle elections procedures, and erode faith in our elections and systems of governance,” they maintain. The chief legal officers point out that the U.S. Constitution, in Article 1 and Article 2, grants the principal responsibility to manage elections to the states. States are also given the exclusive responsibility to manage the presidential election. After extensive debate, the founding fathers intentionally divided power to determine “how presidential electors would be chosen in order to avoid presidential dependence on Congress for position and authority,” the letter says. They point...
    Twenty attorneys general signed a letter addressed to House and Senate leaders pleading against H.R. 1, which the Democrat-led House passed on party lines late Wednesday evening, deeming it unconstitutional as it sets what they described as “alarming mandates,” leading to the federalization of state elections. The House passed H.R. 1, of the “For the People Act of 2021,” Wednesday night, earning praise from Democrats across the board. Hours prior to its passage, 20 attorneys general, led by Indiana Attorney General Todd Rokita (R), sent a letter addressed to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY). H.R. 1 “betrays several Constitutional deficiencies and alarming mandates that, if passed, would federalize state elections and impose burdensome costs and regulations on state and local officials,” they wrote, detailing the Elections Clause of Article I of the Constitution and the Electors Clause of Article II, which gives states the primary role in conducting federal elections for House and Senate, and an even bigger role in presidential elections. “The...
    Twenty Republican state attorneys general signed a letter denouncing the House Democrats’ controversial election reform bill as unconstitutional for a slew of reasons just hours before the measure was expected to be voted on. The letter — led by Indiana Attorney General Todd Rokita — tore into H.R. 1, the "For the People Act," a massive election reform bill and a leading priority for House Democrats this Congress. "This monstrosity of a bill betrays the Constitution, dangerously federalizes state elections, and undermines the integrity of the ballot box," Rokita said in a statement to Fox News. "As a former chief election officer, and now an Attorney General, I know this would be a disaster for election integrity and confidence in the processes that have been developed over time to instill confidence in the idea of ‘one person, one vote.’" The attorneys general said the bill "betrays several Constitutional deficiencies and alarming mandates" that would "federalize" statewide elections across America and that "states have principal —and with presidential elections, exclusive — responsibility to safeguard" how they hold elections under the Constitution. "The...
    Five GOP attorneys general wrote a letter asking President Biden to withdraw his nominee for associate attorney general. Attorneys General Todd Rokita of Indiana, Jeff Landry of Louisiana, Ken Paxton of Texas, Leslie Rutledge of Arkansas, and Mike Hunter of Oklahoma argued in their letter that Vanita Gupta’s "radical" views disqualified her from serving in the role. “Ms. Gupta’s past comments and track record have demonstrated her disinterest in meaningful police reform in favor of destructive policies that would defund the police,” the letter read. “Her nomination will further divide our nation instead of implementing policies to protect our communities and support law enforcement.” WHITE HOUSE STANDS BY TANDEN BUT SIGNALS A FATAL 'STAGE' IN PROCESS IS POSSIBLE The attorneys general criticized previous testimony from Gupta before the Senate Judiciary Committee in which she referenced "structural racism that permeates our justice system" and urged Congress to "pass meaningful, lasting accountability and funding measures that protect communities of color from the systemic perils of over-policing, police brutality, misconduct, harassment, and outright murder" by "decreas[ing] police budgets." "This is not the time...