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August 29, 2023

Chris Lewis

Blog Post Congressional OversightDepartment of Homeland SecurityEthics in Government

The Inaction Of The Obama Administration Got Us Here In Florida

A few days ago, a white supremacist murdered three innocent Black people at a Dollar General store in Jacksonville. Like the shooter in Buffalo and Dylann Roof in Charleston, he had a manifesto that espoused white nationalist talking points and conspiracy theories. The prevalence of racist attacks in recent years underscores the alarming rise of right-wing domestic terrorism in the United States. The problem I want to address is: Who at the highest levels of government is to blame for this?

August 29, 2023

Henry Burke

Blog Post Hack Watch

Yet Another Reason To Ignore The Hacks At CRFB

Joe Biden has no interest in an Obama-style grand bargain to cut Social Security, but Republicans on Capitol Hill are still searching for neoliberal, ostensibly Democratic partners to force bipartisan cuts to the program. On Friday, August 18th, Senator Bill Cassidy (R-LA) took time out of his August recess to tweet “The 2020 election was not stolen, but Social Security is going insolvent. That is what we should be talking about.” A Republican senator advocating Social Security cuts is nothing new, but in a reply to his first tweet, Cassidy attempted to start a conversation within the Beltway by tagging more than a dozen “wonks,” wannabe wonks, and opinion columnists. Among them were two purportedly nonpartisan hacks known for their influence over moderate Democrats — Maya MacGuineas and Marc Goldwein of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget. 

August 17, 2023 | The American Prospect

Timi Iwayemi

Op-Ed 2024 ElectionEthics in GovernmentFinancial RegulationGovernanceRevolving Door

The CFTC Ponders Gambling on Democracy’s Future

As long as one party remains totally united behind a man who attempted to overthrow the government by force, was the most corrupt president in American history, and undermines the public’s faith in elections at every turn, the future of American democratic self-government is at risk.

Sounds scary. But what if I told you this was a great opportunity for fun and profit? Silicon Valley–backed startup Kalshi is attempting to expand the amount of gambling on the country’s elections with the introduction of an “event contract” centered around congressional elections. Simply put, the firm aims to allow traders to bet on the event: Which party will win control of Congress?

August 16, 2023 | Revolving Door Project Newsletter

Toni Aguilar Rosenthal Hannah Story Brown

Newsletter Confirmations CrisisGovernanceGovernment Capacity

Delayed Confirmation of Biden Nominees Both Common and Costly

On July 25, 2023, military leaders in Niger, along with members of the Presidential Guard, enacted a coup against President Mohamed Bazoum. Led by General Abdourahamane Tchiani, a Nigerien military officer and self-appointed President of Niger’s military junta, coup plotters detained the democratically-elected President Bazoum, as well as members of his family, threatened to kill him in the event of any military intervention in the coup, and most recently put him on trial for treason.

Despite widespread rumors of an emergent coup in the country, the United States was reportedly “blindsided” by it, and scrambled to respond. Of course, American intel regarding the actual political atmosphere of the country was hindered in no small way by the lack of State Department personnel staffing embassies in the region.

August 10, 2023

Jeff Hauser

Press Release Department of JusticeGovernance

RELEASE: Biden Justice Department Self-Sabotages By Embracing Debt Ceiling

All last spring, as the looming threat of default swallowed up all the oxygen on the Hill, every other serious crisis demanding political attention played second fiddle to Republicans’ manufactured disaster. In May, President Biden said his “hope and intention” was to “find a rationale to take it to the courts to see whether or not the 14th Amendment is, in fact, something that would be able to stop it.” A lawsuit brought this May by 75,000 federal employees challenging the constitutionality of the debt limit offers just that opportunity. 

So why is the Justice Department actively fighting to get the case dismissed, likely limiting the federal government’s capacity to govern effectively?

August 03, 2023 | The American Prospect

Hannah Story Brown

Op-Ed ClimateExecutive Branch

The Unholy Alliance Between ‘Certified’ Clean Natural Gas Producers and the Certifying Companies

Companies have been charging customers a premium for “greener” gas since 2018. But certified gas could become even more lucrative as the Biden administration seeks to update its standards for gas production. Scenting advantage, back in July 2022 11 companies—five gas producers, four methane monitoring and certification companies, one emissions trading company, and one consulting firm—came together to form a new lobbying group: the Differentiated Gas Coordinating Council (DGCC).