Today's Headlines and Commentary

Today’s Headlines and Commentary

By Katherine Pompilio
Tuesday, May 3, 2022, 4:04 PM

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The Supreme Court has voted to overturn the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade decision, according to an initial draft majority opinion obtained by Politico. The opinion—written by Justice Samuel Alito—finds that the Roe decision was “egregiously wrong from the start” and “must be overruled” to abide by the U.S. Constitution and “return the issue of abortion to the people’s elected representatives.” The Supreme Court’s draft decision is the first of its kind in modern history to be leaked to the public while a case is still pending. The court’s ruling in the draft opinion will not be final until the decision is officially published. 

Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts ordered an investigation into the leak of a draft court opinion that would strike down constitutional protections for abortion rights established in Roe v. Wade, reports CNBC. In a statement, Roberts wrote that the leaked opinion was a betrayal of the confidences of the high court and was “intended to undermine the integrity of [its] operations.” Roberts also described the leak of the confidential document as an “egregious breach of trust that is an affront to the court and community of public servants who work [t]here.” 

Russia is planning to annex new areas of Ukrainian territory in the next few days, writes the Washington Post. U.S. intelligence officials believe that Moscow is planning to formally claim the eastern Ukrainian regions of Donetsk and Luhansk, and also the city of Kherson in the country’s south. To successfully annex the regions, Russian forces are reportedly planning to stage fake referendums in the territories to falsely express support from citizens to leave Ukraine and join Russia. After the fraudulent referendums, the Kremlin would then institute pro-Moscow leaders to govern the newly acquired territory. 

The E.U. is planning a potential widespread ban on the purchase of Russian crude oil, reports the Wall Street Journal. Members of the 27-country bloc are reportedly circulating proposals that include a ban on Russian oil purchases in a wider sanctions package expected to be issued by the end of this year. To establish the embargo on Russian crude oil and oil refined products, the 27 member states would have to unanimously approve the sanctions proposals. 

The House Select Committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol sent interview requests to three Republican members of Congress, according to the New York Times. The select committee sought interviews with Rep. Andy Biggs, Rep. Mo Brooks and Rep. Ronny Jackson because they are believed to have information about alleged efforts by some House Republicans to obtain presidential pardons in the aftermath of the Capitol riot. All three members quickly denied the select committee’s requests for interviews. 

A federal judge ruled that the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol can access data about fundraising and political efforts from one of the Republican National Committee’s (RNC) fundraising vendors, reports the Wall Street Journal. Judge Timothy Kelly of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia rejected a lawsuit filed by the RNC intended to block the House panel from accessing records from Salesforce.com, a commercial marketing platform used by the Republican party to manage communications with donors. 

ICYMI: Yesterday on Lawfare

Jen Patja Howell shared an episode of the Lawfare Podcast in which Scott R. Anderson sat down with Patricia Kim and Julian Ku to discuss how the war in Ukraine is impacting China's global strategy. 

Dakota Foster and Kai Wiggins explained the challenges faced by federal officials when developing policies on extremism. 

Raquel Leslie and Brian Liu analyzed Chinese President Xi Jinping’s new vision for the international order amid the Ukraine war.

Darrell West shared an episode of TechTank which featured a discussion with Jeremy Mark and Emily Kilcrease about computer chip shortages exacerbated by the pandemic and geopolitical tensions.  

Hadley Baker posted the complaint in which former U.S. Amb. Richard Olson said he will plead guilty to illegal foreign lobbying on behalf of the Qatari government. 

Natalie Orpett shared the third episode of The Aftermath which provides insight into what Congress was doing in the days immediately after the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol. 

Paul Rosenzweig and Benjamin Wittes posted a report written by the Lawfare Institute’s Trusted Hardware and Software Working Group to articulate and justify a set of trustworthiness principles—concepts that, ex ante, would justify accepting a digital artifact as worthy of being trusted entitled “Creating a Framework for Supply Chain Trust in Hardware and Software.”

Katherine Pompilio announced this week’s Lawfare Live which will feature a discussion with Rosenzweig, Wittes and Justin Sherman about the trustworthy hardware and software report and its findings. 

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