Firm settles with Justice Department in Libyan bribery probe

A Baltimore-based money management firm has settled a U.S. Department of Justice probe of an affiliate that managed investments for the Libyan government, which was then led by Moammar Gadhafi. The Baltimore Sun reports that Legg Mason sent a letter to shareholders Monday announcing that it expects to pay $71 million as part of the settlement with the Justice Department.

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Samaritan’s Purse standing with Puerto Rico in long-term recovery

As hurricane season approaches people across Puerto Rico are still reeling from last year’s devastating storms-Irma and Maria. That is why international Christian relief organization Samaritan’s Purse is announcing a multiyear recovery plan aimed at rehabilitating more than 390 homes and 55 churches in central and southern Puerto Rico.

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The files contain writings of lead investigators who explain how…

Paul Holes, retired Contra Costa investigator who spent 24 years investigating the “Golden State Killer” is photographed outside the Sacramento District Attorney’s office in Sacramento, Calif., on Wednesday, April 25, 2018. District Attorneys from county across the Bay Area join the FBI and crime investigators in a press conference announcing the arrest of Joseph James DeAngelo, 72. Between 1976 and 1986, the violent and elusive individual known as the East Area Rapist and later as the Original Night Stalker and the Golden State Killer, committed 12 homicides, 45 rapes, and more than 120 residential burglaries in multiple California communities.

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The Constitutional Case for California’s Sanctuary State Laws

The Justice Department has taken California to court over its status as a “sanctuary state,” a term that refers to places where state and local officials refuse to participate in the enforcement of federal immigration laws. In a speech announcing the suit, Attorney General Jeff Sessions accused the Golden State of creating “an open borders system,” something he denounced as “a radical, irrational idea that cannot be accepted.” Unfortunately for Sessions, his case appears to suffer from a significant constitutional defect.

In the complaint filed in March, the Justice Department asked a U.S. District Court to invalidate several state laws, including parts of the 2017 California Values Act, which stops state and local police from providing certain assistance to federal immigration authorities. Among other things, the act prohibits them from “detaining an individual on the basis of a [federal immigration] hold request”; “transfer[ing] an individual to immigration authorities unless authorized by a judicial warrant or judicial probable cause determination”; and “providing information” to federal immigration authorities “regarding a person’s release date…or other information unless that information is available to the public, or is in response to a notification request from immigration authorities in accordance with” California law.

According to the Justice Department, those provisions violate the Supremacy Clause of the U.S. Constitution by “making it more difficult for federal immigration officers to carry out their responsibilities in California” and by “obstruct[ing] the United States’ ability to enforce laws that Congress has enacted.” In effect, the attorney general wants to force local police to participate in the administration of federal law.

But that would run afoul of both the 10th Amendment and Supreme Court precedent. As the late Justice Antonin Scalia explained in Printz v. United States (1997), “the Federal Government may neither issue directives requiring the States to address particular problems, nor command the States’ officers, or those of their political subdivisions, to administer or enforce a federal regulatory program.”

At issue in Printz were parts of the 1993 Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act that required local police to help implement a federal gun control scheme. The Clinton administration argued that obstructionist local officials should not be allowed to thwart duly enacted national legislation, but the Court disagreed. The provisions were struck down as an unconstitutional “federal commandeering of state governments.”

Sessions’ case against portions of the California Values Act involves the same constitutional failing that Scalia identified in Printz. The feds may commandeer local police into administering neither federal gun control nor federal immigration policy.

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Oakland mayor inspires new bill which could lock up officials like her

Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf said in a recent op-ed for the Washington Post that she originally ran for office because she wanted to change the way things operate. She may be changing things more than she thought and in ways she never imagined. Following calls to investigate her decision to alert illegal aliens in her community to an impending ICE raid, Iowa Congressman Steve King (R) has introduced legislation which could lock up public officials obstructing justice in this fashion for as much as five years. (Washington Times)

Tipping illegal immigrants off to a looming immigration sweep could net sanctuary city leaders jail time, under a bill announced Monday by Rep. Steve King.

The Iowa Republican dubbed the bill the Mayor Libby Schaaf Act, after the Oakland mayor who alerted California’s Bay Area to an impending sweep this year, a move that immigration officials said helped hundreds of people escape detection.

At the time, the chief of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement said Ms. Schaaf was essentially acting as a “gang lookout” tipping off lawbreakers when police came through their neighborhood.

Mr. King’s bill would include a penalty of up to five years in prison for any state or local official who obstructs enforcement of federal laws.

“I want lawless, Sanctuary City politicians to hear this message clearly: If you obstruct ICE, you are going to end up in the cooler,” Mr. King said in announcing his bill.

I somehow doubt that King is expecting much support from his Democratic colleagues on this one and the bill may be nothing more than an effort to make a point in this debate. I’m also not sure there’s really a need for such a law. As we’ve discussed here previously, we already have laws on the books which cover this. Under Title 8, Chapter 12, anyone can be charged with harboring or shielding from detection any illegal aliens, leaving them subject to a fine and/or not more than 10 years in prison. I see no reason why an elected official such as a mayor wouldn’t be subject to that law.

Then again, when it’s a public official doing it, that’s a special sort of violation in some ways because they’re violating their oath of office and undermining the laws they are sworn to uphold. In that sense, perhaps a special law specifically covering elected officials might be in order.

Of course, even if this gets signed into law it won’t apply to Mayor Schaaf, so she doesn’t have much to worry about. You can’t prosecute someone for a law passed after they commit the act, so unless Schaaf plans to do any additional gang signaling when ICE is coming to town she should be in the clear.

I do hope that this bill at least earns time for an open debate on the floor of the House. If nothing else, it will be entertaining to see if any Democrats are willing to take to the podium and argue against holding elected officials accountable when they flout the law. How does one even begin to structure such an argument? If you’re going to start making exceptions under the law for people in public office that could lead to all manner of uncomfortable conversations in the current climate of Washington.

The post Oakland mayor inspires new bill which could lock up officials like her appeared first on Hot Air.

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John Cena and Nikki Bella Spotted Together After Their Split

The wrestling star couple were spotted grabbing coffee together in San Diego on Saturday, dressed down in sweats and workout clothes, in a photo obtained by TMZ . It is the first time the couple have been seen together in public, since announcing their split last month, breaking off their engagement and relationship of six years.

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Google Is Changing Its Relationship With The News Industry As European Rules Approach

Four of the most prominent trade associations representing the news industry argue in a letter sent Monday to Google that the tech giant is screwing them over all under the guise of forced compliance. Google has recently been announcing changes to the way publishers can use its products and features, like advertising platforms, ostensibly as a means to abide by the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation , a set of rules set to take effect May 25. The regulations, while created overseas, can conceivably affect U.S. publishers even if they only have a very small amount of readers within the EU’s jurisdiction.

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Hard Times for Dick’s as 2A Supporters Respond to Company’s Anti-Gun Bent

DICKS Ban Guns No Circle
Hard Times for Dick’s as 2A Supporters Respond to Company’s Anti-Gun Bent

Fairfax, VA – -(Ammoland.com)- We have recently been reporting on the bizarre anti-gun activism of one of the nation’s larger firearm retailers, Dick’s Sporting Goods and its affiliated Field and Stream stores.

First, the company announced it would stop selling most centerfire semi-automatic rifles at its stores, carry only limited capacity magazines for semi-automatic guns, and ban firearm sales to certain legally eligible adults. It then took the further step of declaring it would destroy its inventory of the newly-restricted firearms at company expense. And if that weren’t enough, the news also recently broke that the company had hired expensive D.C. lobbyists to push for gun control measures on Capitol Hill.

Dick’s, in other words, was positioning itself as a rising star in the field of corporate gun control activism, in obvious contradiction of its own financial interests.

Now, however, the pro-gun community is parrying Dick’s gun control thrust with their own countermeasures, while customers appear to be eschewing Dick’s to search for bargains elsewhere.

Last week, the Board of Governors of the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) – the trade association for the firearms, ammunition, hunting and shooting sports industries – voted unanimously to expel Dick’s Sporting Goods from membership in the organization. While the NSSF noted it supports the rights of its members to make individual business decisions, it determined that Dick’s new polices do not “reflect the reality of the vast majority of law-abiding gun owners” and constitute “conduct detrimental to the best interests of the Foundation.” Law-abiding gun owners, the company added, “should not be penalized for the actions of criminals.”

Meanwhile, members of the firearms industry have also begun withdrawing their products from Dick’s and Field & Stream outlets.

First, Illinois-based Springfield Armory – maker of several lines of highly-popular rifles and pistols — announced early this month that was “severing ties” with the two retailers. In announcing the decision, Springfield Armory stated, “we believe in the rights and principles fought for and secured by American patriots and our founding forefathers, without question.” It concluded, “We will not accept Dick’s Sporting Goods’ continued attempts to deny Second Amendment freedoms to our fellow Americans.”   What is becoming increasingly clear, however, is that Dick’s has inserted itself into a tight spot from which it might not emerge unscathed, if it manages to survive at all. Its business with Second Amendment supporters in particular may well grind to a halt.

Iconic shotgun maker O.F. Mossberg & Sons followed up this week with its own announcement that it will “not accept any future orders from Dick’s Sporting Goods or Field & Stream” and is “in the process of evaluating current contractual agreements.” Mossberg’s press release on the decision cited its own “staunch support[] of the U.S. Constitution and our Second Amendment right” and its disagreement with “Dick’s Sporting Goods’ recent anti-Second Amendment actions.”

MKS Supply, marketer of Hi-Point Firearms and Inland Manufacturing, LLC, has now become the latest supplier to cut off Dick’s and Field & Stream.

Its president, Charles Brown, justified the decision on the basis that “Dick’s Sporting Goods and its subsidiary, Field & Stream, have shown themselves, in our opinion, to be no friend of Americans’ Second Amendment.” He went on to cite several “wrong” moves by Dick’s in recent months, including “villainizing modern sporting rifles in response to pressure from uninformed, anti-gun voices” and “hiring lobbyists to oppose American citizens’ freedoms secured by the Second Amendment.”

This industry pressure on Dick’s comes at a sensitive time for the company. Its shares took a steep 6.3% dive in March, amid what analysts described as a “downbeat outlook.” Indeed, its own CEO Edward Stack admitted his new investment in gun control “is not going to be positive from a traffic standpoint and a sales standpoint.”

How that assessment squares with his own obligations to the company and its shareholders is unclear. Profits, after all, are where the rubber meets the road in any business enterprise.

What is becoming increasingly clear, however, is that Dick’s has inserted itself into a tight spot from which it might not emerge unscathed, if it manages to survive at all. Its business with Second Amendment supporters in particular may well grind to a halt.

Should that happen, Dick’s will have no one to blame but itself, and especially Mr. Stack. Dick’s example should serve as a warning for other businesses in the firearm sector that would hope to find common cause with activists who are seeking nothing so much as to put gun sellers out of business for good.

National Rifle Association Institute For Legislative Action (NRA-ILA)

About:
Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the “lobbying” arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Visit: www.nra.org

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Cambridge Analytica probe to continue despite collapse

Regulators will pursue an investigation into Cambridge Analytica despite the data firm announcing its collapse. The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), which has been looking into the British firm’s handling of data harvested from millions of Facebook …

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