DOJ releases overruled memos finding it illegal for presidents to appoint relatives – POLITICO

The Justice Department has released a series of recently overruled legal memos concluding that presidents cannot appoint their relatives to the White House staff or presidential commissions, even to unpaid posts.

In January, a career Justice Department official essentially declared the earlier opinions erroneous or obsolete, clearing the way for President Donald Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, to take a senior adviser position in the White House. First daughter Ivanka Trumplater took a similar official but unpaid slot under the same legal rationale.

The newly disclosed opinions, issued to the administrations of Richard Nixon, Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan and obtained by POLITICO Monday through a Freedom of Information Act request, detail how Justice Department lawyers concluded for decades that such appointments of family members were illegal under an anti-nepotism law passed in 1967.

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Resources | Comic Book Legal Defense Fund

Part of the Banned Books Week Coalition, the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund (CBLDF), founded in 1986 by underground comic artist Denis Kitchen, is “a non-profit organization dedicated to the protection of the First Amendment rights of the comics medium and its community of retailers, creators, publishers, librarians, and readers.” Under the Resources tab, the CBLDF offers a wealth of information relating to comics and graphic novels, which remains one of the most frequently challenged book genres. These resources include a detailed History of Comics Censorship, a series of six essays that traces this history back to the 1930s. This series includes a discussion of Dr. Frederic Wertham’s famous anti-comic book Seduction of the Innocent: the Influence of Comic Books on Today’s Youth, which led to Wertham’s involvement in a 1954 Senate Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee to Investigate Juvenile Delinquency. Another highlight of the resource collection is the Library and Educator Tools, which includes discussion guides, materials for book clubs, and resources for incorporating specific graphic novels into the classroom.
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Copyright © 2017 Internet Scout Research Group – http://scout.wisc.edu

HUD Disaster Relief Options for FHA Homeowners

Was your home or your ability to make your mortgage payments harmed by an event that the President declared a disaster? You may qualify for relief to help you keep your home. Much of the mortgage industry and The United States Department of Housing and Urban Development are committed to assisting borrowers whose lives and livelihoods are thrown into turmoil by a disaster.

If you can’t pay your mortgage because of the disaster, your lender may be able to help you. If you are at risk of losing your home because of the disaster, your lender may stop or delay initiation of foreclosure for 90 days. Lenders may also waive late fees for borrowers who may become delinquent on their loans as a result of the disaster.

If you have a conventional mortgage, you are strongly encouraged to contact your lender for further information, and to see if you are eligible for relief.

If you have an FHA-insured mortgage, please continue reading to find out what options may be available to you

NY High Court Rejects Constitutional Right to Assisted Suicide | New York Law Journal

Josefa Velasquez, New York Law Journal

 
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Full Text of Decision:   Myers v. Schneiderman

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“Our Legislature has a rational basis for criminalizing assisted suicide, and plaintiffs have no constitutional right to the relief they seek herein,” the Court of Appeals, affirming the ruling by the Appellate Division, First Department (NYLJ, May 4, 2016) and acting Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Joan Kenney (NYLJ, Oct. 21, 2015).
 
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Free Law Project–PACER OPINIONS

We Have Every Free PACER Opinion on CourtListener.com

Free Opinion Report Dropdown

At Free Law Project, we have gathered millions of court documents over the years, but it’s with distinct pride that we announce that we have now completed our biggest crawl ever. After nearly a year of work, and with support from the U.S. Department of Labor and Georgia State University, we have collected every free written order and opinion that is available in PACER. To accomplish this we used PACER‘s “Written Opinion Report,” which provides many opinions for free.

This collection contains approximately 3.4 million orders and opinions from approximately 1.5 million federal district and bankruptcy court cases dating back to 1960. More than four hundred thousand of these documents were scanned and required OCR, amounting to nearly two million pages of text extraction that we completed for this project.

All of the documents amassed are available for search in the RECAP Archive of PACER documents and via our APIs. New opinions will be downloaded every night to keep the collection up to date.

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The Domestic Terrorism Danger: Focus on Unauthorized Private Military Groups – Lawfare

By Philip Zelikow– White Burkett Miller Professor of History at the University of Virginia. He has practiced law and served in various government positions, including as the executive director of the 9/11 Commission.

The Charlottesville tragedy came close to home for me because I teach at the University of Virginia and because it signaled the reappearance of a threat I had encountered before: the rise of well-armed private militia groups.  For those close to the action, including the law enforcement personnel on duty, hardly any aspect of the Charlottesville confrontation was more menacing than the appearance of organized, often uniformed, private bands of men in military getups, openly brandishing assault rifles and other long guns.

This is an ominous development, but it is not a new one. And it can be–and has been–countered with legal action. I took part in that work.

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TSA raising aviation security baseline with stronger domestic security measures | Transportation Security Administration

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As new procedures are phased in, TSA officers will begin to ask travelers to remove electronics larger than a cell phone from their carry-on bags and place them in a bin with nothing on top or below, similar to how laptops have been screened for years. This simple step helps TSA officers obtain a clearer X-ray image.
 
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