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Blog

Oklahoma and Georgia Governors Sign Conservative Justice Reform Bills into Law

This past Wednesday, Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin signed a package of justice reform bills into law, making the Sooner State the latest conservative state to adopt these “smart-on-crime” policies. That same day, Gov. Nathan Deal, on the other side of the country in Georgia, signed a smaller justice reform package into law, expanding on the state’s already impressive portfolio of justice reform initiatives. With the simultaneous adoption of these justice reform measures into law, conservative states like Oklahoma and Georgia are the pioneers in effective justice reform.

04/28/2016
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Blog

With Unanimous Passage through the House, the Email Privacy Act will Modernize Online Data Privacy

Back in the 1980s, everyone was walking around with their perms and mullets, Bruce Springsteen and Michael Jackson were playing sold out concerts, and people still couldn’t believe that Darth Vader was Luke’s father (spoilers). Clearly, things have changed a lot since then, yet, curiously, privacy standards regarding emails have not. While email certainly wasn’t a dominant form of communication back in the 80’s, the computer revolution that our society has undergone makes online data and information more valuable than ever. It’s time for our privacy standards, then, to reflect the new and ever-more-digitized world we live in.

04/28/2016
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Blog

With Viber’s Latest Update, Congress is Losing the Encryption Battle

WhatsApp, the popular online messaging service, recently changed the landscape of the encryption debate after announcing that their entire platform, between all devices, would offer end-to-end encryption. This announcement was made on the tail end of Apple’s dispute with the FBI, precisely about breaking into encrypted iPhones. This past week, Viber, another popular messaging app, announced that their latest update would also include end-to-end encryption for all of its users. While this may just seem like another example of encryption making its way onto popular apps, the case with Viber is particularly more salient in proving just how futile it is for Congress to try to restrict encryption.

04/22/2016
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Blog

Comcast Strikes Deals with Samsung and Roku, Leaving FCC in the Dust

For quite some time now, the FCC has been trying to sell the idea of “opening” the set-top box as something innovative and beneficial for consumers. However, on the eve of the proposal’s filing deadline, Comcast and the free market have already moved well beyond the set-top box, into much more innovative territory. In two separate press releases this past Wednesday, Comcast announced new partnerships with Samsung and Roku to allow Xfinity streaming through the two platforms. Such partnerships demonstrate that, while the FCC ruling isn’t even official yet, they will essentially be obsolete on arrival. The set-top box is on its way out, and the market, not the FCC, is providing the alternative.

04/22/2016
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Blog

Justice Reform Package Passes through Oklahoma Legislature, Soon to be Signed into Law

In recent years, several conservative states have been at the forefront in tackling justice reform. As documented in the report Federalism in Action: How Conservative States Got Smart on Crime, states like Texas and Georgia have been able to cut back on total prison expenditures while also reducing rates of incarceration and recidivism. Now, Oklahoma is looking to emulate these great success stories, as a series of justice reform bills recently passed through the House and Senate. All that is left is the signature of Governor Mary Fallin, and Oklahoma will become the next state to implement a “smart-on-crime” approach to criminal justice.

04/22/2016
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Asset Forfeiture Reform Signed into Law in Nebraska

This past Tuesday, Nebraska made history when Governor Pete Ricketts signed LB 1106 into law, completely reforming the state’s asset forfeiture system. In doing so, Nebraska has become the 10th state to require a conviction before property can be seized. What’s more, the reforms are so sweeping that Nebraska has become the third state, following New Mexico and North Carolina, to essentially disband its civil asset forfeiture system, a great boon for innocent citizens and private property.

04/21/2016
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Blog

In Delaware Legislature, Bill Introduced to Dramatically Reform Civil Asset Forfeiture

Across the nation, more and more states are coming around to fix the injustices and intrusions on liberty committed through civil asset forfeiture. Just this month, Virginia, New Hampshire, and Nebraska have all taken steps to change their own asset forfeiture proceedings. Recently, a bill was introduced in the Delaware State Senate that may just make the First State the next state to adopt asset forfeiture reform.

04/18/2016
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Nebraska Asset Forfeiture Reform Passes through Legislature, Headed to the Governor’s Desk

The people of Nebraska have spoken, and they are calling for a change in the state’s asset forfeiture laws. Earlier this week, LB 1106 passed through the state’s unicameral legislature with a vote of 38 to 8, with 3 abstentions. The bill is now heading to the Governor Pete Ricketts' desk, waiting for a signature to become law.

04/15/2016
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Anti-Encryption Bill is an Affront to Privacy, Technological Security

In recent months, the government has regularly been unable to underscore technological security and privacy in the digital sphere, as more and more tech companies turn to encrypting their data. From the Apple case to the recent WhatsApp encryption overhaul, individuals have witnessed a glimmer of hope that their privacy may once again be protected from government interference. However, this consumer privacy is in danger once more as Congress seeks to nullify the system of encryption.

04/13/2016
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Blog

New Hampshire Bill Pursuing Asset Forfeiture Reform, Protecting Innocent Citizens

In the Granite State, numerous citizens have faced infringements on their rights because of civil asset forfeiture abuse. Just as many other states have realized that asset forfeiture is being used as a tool to take away hard-earned cash and other such property from innocent citizens, New Hampshire must pursue change in the state’s policing laws. Fortunately, one such bill is making its way through the legislature to do just that.

04/08/2016

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