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How Mitch McConnell Accidentally Doomed the Patriot Act

May 26, 2015 COMMENTARY BY: Sam Adler-Bell TOPICS: Foreign Policy, National Security

Despite his scare tactics that have worked in the past, Senator McConnell’s hackneyed rhetoric fell short during the most recent Patriot Act vote in the Senate.

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Marco Rubio’s tough-guy act on foreign policy

As with many qualms of presidential candidates, Florida Senator Marco Rubio's latest speech on foreign policy was severely lacking in any substantial concrete policy visions. TCF fellow Michael Cohen confirms that, like many presidents, Rubio talks a big game, but rarely has much to say in terms of specific actions he would like to take if elected.

He offered the oft-heard — and untrue — GOP assertion that President Obama has retreated from the world. He assailed the president for hundreds of billions in defense cuts — cuts that are a direct result of the budget caps a Republican Congress forced on the White House. He criticized Obama for betraying American values through “the expediency of negotiations with repressive regimes,” which makes me think that if Rubio ever saw a picture of Ronald Reagan shaking hands with Mikhail Gorbachev his head might explode.

Read Cohen's full article here.

Tags: republican party, presidential race, gop, foreign policy

When The Gang-bangers Are White Guys

TCF fellow and co-director of the University of Chicago Crime Lab Harold Pollack conducted an interview with The Marshall Project on the recent shooting incident in Waco, Texas involving dueling biker gangs. He says that this type of violence becomes largely overlooked because of the high likelihood that biker gangs are typically white.

So are the biker gangs a real problem, in your view?

I don’t know. Some outlaw biker gangs have certainly sold a lot of meth or been involved in other drug distribution. There is something very 1971 Rolling Stone about this scene. I couldn’t quite believe it when I read this news.

Read the full interview here.

Tags: racial profiling, organized crime, biker gangs

House Passes USA (Slightly More) Freedom Act

On Wednesday, the House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed the USA Freedom Act, which reauthorizes and reforms key measures of the Patriot Act. TCF policy associate Sam Adler-Bell explains what this means.

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TCF’s Barton Gellman Reflects on First Public Interview with Snowden

TCF senior fellow Barton Gellman discusses his first public conversation with Edward Snowden at a recent event hosted by Princeton University.

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Tags: surveillance, snowden leaks, snowden interview, nsa, national security

That’s What You Get for Filming the Police

Recent events in Baltimore, Ferguson, and now North Charleston, South Carolina have brought public attention—and outrage—to the issue of police brutality. As TCF policy associate Sam Adler-Bell explains, however, though widespread awareness of the issue is new, police violence itself is not.

Police violence isn't new - nor is the impunity with which it's treated by the legal system - but the current level of public concern over its prevalence is. And individual acts of filming the police have played a big role in that change.

Read Adler-Bell's full discussion of the issue and the importance of protecting the public's right to film law enforcement at Truthout.

Tags: surveillance, police reform, police

 

Foreign Policy

Foreign Policy

In the first years of the new century, an assertive foreign policy took a toll on the cultivated role of the U.S. as a responsible global leader. The Century Foundation's work in this area provides perspective on the international difficulties the U.S. is facing today, while providing policy recommendations to promote the nation's security interests. Our research and analysis focuses on effectively responding to challenges in the Middle East and Pakistan, as well as responding to international crime.

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