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April 22, 2021

Nika Hajikhodaverdikhan

Blog Post

Criminal JusticeDepartment of Justice

Merrick Garland: A Potential Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing for Criminal Justice Advocates

Last May, as the country first erupted into protests over George Floyd’s murder at the hands of Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, Biden promised that he would deliver “real police reform” if elected president. The country’s eyes are on Minnesota again this week after a police officer in a Minneapolis suburb shot and killed Daunte Wright, sparking a new wave of protests. This time, Biden need no longer speak in hypotheticals; he is President. Will his administration deliver?

April 22, 2021

Elias Alsbergas

Blog Post

Ethics in GovernmentExecutive BranchFinancial RegulationTreasury Department

Delaware Connections Run Deep As DuPont Family's Darla Pomeroy Heads To Treasury

Darla Pomeroy, who is married to an heir to the DuPont family fortune, was just named Senior Advisor to the Office of Domestic Finance at the US Treasury. While her record does not show any familiarity with financial regulatory policy, it reveals instead a history of a powerful corporation highly influential in Delaware placing a close ally in the administration.

April 19, 2021

Eleanor Eagan

Blog Post

Administrative LawDepartment of Justice

The Trump Administration Made a Mockery of the Law. Why Hasn't Biden Tossed its Cases?

Donald Trump and his Department of Justice consistently made a mockery of the law throughout his four years in power. And while their laughable reasoning and indefensible positions were struck down at a historic rate, many cases were still waiting for Biden. The new administration tossed out a handful immediately but an alarming number remain, either in some form of pause or advancing forward with the Biden administration adopting Trump’s position.

April 16, 2021

Fatou Ndiaye Zena Wolf

Blog Post

CoronavirusExecutive BranchIntellectual PropertyRevolving Door

The Brother Of A Pharma Lobbyist Advises Biden As He Weighs Vaccine IP Waiver

Despite pushback from progressives, Ricchetti has continued to hold a powerful advisory position in the Biden White House. His background in corporate lobbying and strong ties to the pharmaceutical industry are deeply troubling signs as the Biden Administration faces enormously consequential decisions about how to end the COVID-19 pandemic.

April 16, 2021

Sion Bell

Blog Post

Independent AgenciesIRS

Neglected IRS Oversight Board A Crucial Component of Tax Justice

It is relatively well known, for example, that the Internal Revenue Service has long suffered from under-investments in its budget. Less appreciated, however, are independent facets within the IRS which, rather than being primarily burdened by budget constraints, have simply been forgotten. One such facet is the IRS Oversight Board (IRSOB), which is supposed to provide guidance to the president on the IRS Commissioner and develop long-term strategic plans for the agency. The Board has lacked the five members necessary for a quorum since 2015.

April 15, 2021

Timi Iwayemi

Blog Post

Foreign PolicyIntellectual Property

Why Is Politico's Ryan Heath Carrying Water For Big Pharma Monopolies?

The world is currently at an inflection point – Western leaders can choose to continue blocking the TRIPS waiver and lock in a cycle of dependence or empower poorer countries to develop generic vaccines and build infrastructure that will safely put the pandemic behind us. Critiques of the TRIPS waiver claim that most poor countries lack the infrastructure to carry out vaccine operations – a paternalistic view that suggests that manufacturing capacity, supply chain management, and logistics are static in nature. The sooner we act, the more time poorer countries have to begin mobilizing resources needed to make generic vaccine development possible.

April 14, 2021

Henry Burke

Blog Post

2020 Election/TransitionGovernment Capacity

Biden’s Build Back Better is Behind Schedule

On the campaign trail, Biden was reluctant to criticize any aspect of the “Obama-Biden” administration’s record. Since taking office, however, he has made perfectly clear that he is aware of, and has learned from, many of its mistakes. Having watched how an anemic stimulus package in 2009 delivered a slow, faltering recovery and political carnage, the Biden administration chose to go big with its economic response. This initial, consequential departure has earned Biden accolades and prompted a “growing narrative that he’s bolder and bigger-thinking than President Obama” (a narrative Biden reportedly loves). But while Biden may be surpassing Obama legislatively, he is lagging behind him when it comes to the pace of nominations, delaying policy implementation and preventing his administration from reaching its full potential.

April 14, 2021

Mariama Eversley

Blog Post

Department of Justice

Bold Leadership Needed in Minnesota’s U.S. Attorney Office

As police terror continues to claim the lives of Black Minnesotans, Biden must use all the tools at his disposal to root out police misconduct and deliver on his campaign promises of racial justice. U.S. Attorneys, the local face of the Department of Justice, will be an important institution to leverage. But the remains of Trump’s influence on these offices through acting officials and assistants could thwart the administration’s goals.

April 09, 2021

Eleanor Eagan Timi Iwayemi

Blog Post

Department of CommerceIntellectual Property

Why You Should Care Who Leads the Patent and Trademark Office

As pressure mounts on the United States government to support waiving intellectual property (IP) protections on the COVID-19 vaccines at the World Trade Organization, progressives are closely monitoring the Biden administration’s appointments to agencies that impact intellectual property matters such as the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).