Washington Markup

How Big a Deal is H.R. 347, That “Criminalizing Protest” Bill?

How Big a Deal is H.R. 347, That “Criminalizing Protest” Bill?

By Gabe Rottman, Legislative Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 11:56am
Recent days have seen significant concern about an unassuming bill with an unassuming name: the "Federal Restricted Buildings and Grounds Improvement Act of 2011." The bill, H.R. 347, has been variously described as making the First Amendment illegal or criminalizing the Occupy protests.
Budgeting Away Women's Reproductive Rights

Budgeting Away Women's Reproductive Rights

By Georgeanne M. Usova, Washington Legislative Office at 4:23pm

In its first month, Congress has launched assault after assault on the rights of women, and the federal budget process will be no different. Year after year the budget becomes a vehicle for a host of restrictions limiting access to reproductive health…

Working to End Racial Profiling: ACLU to Testify Before Senate Judiciary

Working to End Racial Profiling: ACLU to Testify Before Senate Judiciary

By Anthony D. Romero, Executive Director, ACLU at 2:24pm

Racial profiling is based on crass stereotypes and assumptions, instead of facts, evidence and good solid police work.

How to Save $24 Billion and Fix Our Broken Justice System

How to Save $24 Billion and Fix Our Broken Justice System

By Meghan Groob, Media Strategist, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 1:19pm

Here's a hypothetical for you: Someone approaches you on the street and offers you a big stack of cash with no strings attached. Do you take it?

Of course you do.

As much as we'd like to pretend otherwise, money matters. And that's…

On Women's Health, the House Trades One Bad Idea for Another

On Women's Health, the House Trades One Bad Idea for Another

By Georgeanne M. Usova, Washington Legislative Office at 5:32pm

Watching Congress' actions toward women last week might leave you confused about what year it is. Instead of advancing a single policy designed to help women, the U.S. House of Representatives has chosen to attack women's health any way it can.

Even…

"Guantánamo North" – NDAA Indefinite Detention Coming Soon to a Town Near You?

"Guantánamo North" – NDAA Indefinite Detention Coming Soon to a Town Near You?

By Chris Anders, Senior Legislative Counsel, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 10:00am

Top senators thought you wouldn't notice. Behind closed doors, they wrote up new indefinite detention and Guantánamo provisions in the annual defense policy bill, and then waited 11 days to quietly file the bill.

But we now have the bill,…

End Near for Shackling of Pregnant Women

End Near for Shackling of Pregnant Women

By Joanne Lin, Washington Legislative Office at 4:51pm

The massive $1.1 trillion spending bill (“omnibus”) passed by Congress last week and signed into law by President Obama includes a significant victory: a provision aimed at ending the atrocious practice of shackling pregnant women in immigration…

A Jury of Your Peers – The Right to a Jury Trial Free from Discrimination

By Patrick DePoy, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 3:17pm

Congressman Steve Rothman (D-NJ) recently introduced the Juror Non-Discrimination Act (H.R. 5848) to prohibit discrimination against any juror on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. Congressman Rothman stated, “[t]he fact…

Too Classified for Congress? When It Comes to Congressional Oversight of Intelligence Activities, Transparency Should Always Triumph Over Secrecy

Too Classified for Congress? When It Comes to Congressional Oversight of Intelligence Activities, Transparency Should Always Triumph Over Secrecy

By Nathaniel J. Turner, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 1:11pm

Tomorrow the House of Representatives will have a choice to make: openness and transparency, or secrecy and business as usual. From NSA surveillance to CIA torture, congressional oversight of intelligence activities over the last decade has been inadequate.…