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Susan Collins of Maine is the last New England Republican in Congress. But for how long?

Susan Collins of Maine is the last New England Republican in Congress. But for how long?Collins has served in the Senate for 22 years, but her opponents hope one vote can pull her down: the one she cast for Brett Kavanaugh.

POSTED JUNE 25, 2019 5:00 AM

Saudi envoy blasts UN expert's report on Khashoggi killing

Saudi envoy blasts UN expert's report on Khashoggi killingIn what amounted to a face-off at the U.N's top human rights body, Ambassador Abdulaziz Alwasil insisted that special rapporteur Agnes Callamard had failed to follow proper procedures and used flawed sourcing in her 101-page report made public last week. "Accusations have been launched, and fingers have been pointed — (she is) supporting herself on non-credible articles or sources," he told the Human Rights Council, in Arabic through a U.N. interpreter.

POSTED JUNE 26, 2019 12:31 PM

Iran: US botched retaliatory cyberattack, faces 'crushing response' to drones

Iran: US botched retaliatory cyberattack, faces 'crushing response' to dronesSecretary of State Mike Pompeo arrived in Saudi Arabia for talks ahead of a planned announcement of new economic sanctions targeting Iran.

POSTED JUNE 25, 2019 12:23 PM

2021 Ford Bronco to Get 2.3-Liter EcoBoost Engine, according to an Online Parts Configurator

2021 Ford Bronco to Get 2.3-Liter EcoBoost Engine, according to an Online Parts ConfiguratorMulti-line retailer Canadian Tire inadvertently revealed the future Bronco's engine on its website.

POSTED JUNE 25, 2019 12:30 PM

Conservative U.S. Justice Gorsuch again sides with liberals in criminal case

Conservative U.S. Justice Gorsuch again sides with liberals in criminal caseThe court ruled that the right of Andre Haymond to face a jury trial under the U.S. Constitution's Sixth Amendment was violated when a judge unilaterally imposed an additional prison sentence after Haymond violated the terms of his supervised release. Haymond originally was sentenced to just over three years in prison and 10 years of supervised release after being convicted by a jury in 2010 of possessing pornographic images involving children. After completing his sentence, Haymond was found in 2015 in possession of 59 additional images.

POSTED JUNE 26, 2019 2:47 PM

14 Things You Didn't Know About Anthony Bourdain

14 Things You Didn't Know About Anthony Bourdain

POSTED JUNE 25, 2019 10:52 AM

Watch Out, Russia and China: The Navy Has a New Plan to Kill Your Submarines

Watch Out, Russia and China: The Navy Has a New Plan to Kill Your SubmarinesSmall said the Navy is ultimately looking for a “family of systems.”Should an enemy submarine surface well beyond undersea or surface drone detection range and send intelligence to attack platforms - US Navy platforms could be vulnerable in some instances. Fortified by targeting data from well beyond the horizon, enemy subs, planes and ships might, in this case, be well-positioned for a coordinated strike.However, should an interwoven web of Navy surveillance assets track and share vital information, coordinated surface, air and undersea drones could sustain an unprecedented advantage -- and a new attack synergy could actually begin to transform maritime warfare.Enemy mines, surface ships, small boats and submarines might be detected more quickly, but, perhaps of greater importance, cross-domain drone connectivity would completely change the sensor-to-shooter kill chain. With this in mind, Navy weapons developers have put this initiative on the fast track, with the hope of rapidly networking its fleet of surface, air and undersea drones.Submarine hunting with Textron’s Unmanned Surface Vehicles (USVs) is already breaking through to a new level of detection and attack technology, laying a foundation of progress from which to build toward a new horizon of the desired interconnected maritime drone combat. This new level of multi-domain drone networking was described at the Navy League’s Sea Air Space Symposium by Capt. Pete Small, Program Manager for Unmanned Systems. Small said this is now being advanced through a collaborative effort between Naval Sea Systems Command and Naval Air Systems Command.“In the command and control area we are looking to standardize protocols across UUVs, USV and UAVs,” Small said. Using common protocol standards and flexible architecture, the Navy plans to solidify what Small called “a smattering of manned and unmanned systems, satellites and ground stations communicating with the right interfaces.”Surface radio or GPS signals, coupled with various kinds of sonar or low-frequency undersea communications, form the foundation for emerging kinds of networking which bring the prospect of a new era of interconnectivity. Also, DARPA and BAE Systems are now working on an emerging GPS-like undersea networking technology as well.“You might have a destroyer that needs to operate a UUV and a USV and link back to a shore-based command and control center. You have got to have common protocols. Every unmanned system is a little different and has its own requirements. Ships and subs have different elements. You need commonality for platform integration,” Small said.

POSTED JUNE 25, 2019 9:00 PM

U.A.E. Splits With U.S. Over Blame for Oil Tanker Attack in May

U.A.E. Splits With U.S. Over Blame for Oil Tanker Attack in May(Bloomberg) -- The United Arab Emirates appeared to distance itself from U.S. claims that pinned attacks on oil tankers near the Strait of Hormuz on Iran.“Honestly we can’t point the blame at any country because we don’t have evidence,” Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah Bin Zayed Al Nahyan said on Wednesday in Moscow. “If there is a country that has the evidence, then I’m convinced that the international community will listen to it. But we need to make sure the evidence is precise and convincing.”While an investigation by the U.A.E., Norway and Saudi Arabia concluded that a “state actor” was most likely behind the incident in May, no nation was singled out. Still, U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton has said that Iran was almost certainly responsible.The attack predated the pair of strikes in the Gulf of Oman this month that the U.S. has also blamed on Iran. Vessels were targeted off the U.A.E. coast in May as they made their way toward the Strait of Hormuz, the world’s foremost oil shipping chokepoint.Iran’s foreign minister has labeled Bolton and the leaders of the U.A.E., Israel and Saudi Arabia as the “B-team” that’s prodding President Donald Trump into going to war with the Islamic Republic. Trump slapped new sanctions on Tehran this week.With tensions on the rise across the Middle East, the U.A.E.’s top diplomat tried to change tack after talks in Moscow with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov.“We are in a region that is tense and important for the world and we don’t want more tension,” said Sheikh Abdullah.\--With assistance from Zainab Fattah and Verity Ratcliffe.To contact the reporter on this story: Abbas Al Lawati in Dubai at aallawati6@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Shaji Mathew at, Paul Abelsky, Mark WilliamsFor more articles like this, please visit us at©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

POSTED JUNE 26, 2019 7:23 AM

Booking fall travel or holiday flights? Here's how to find out if it's on a Boeing 737 Max

Booking fall travel or holiday flights? Here's how to find out if it's on a Boeing 737 MaxSouthwest, American, United and Alaska airlines are all selling flights scheduled on the Max for post-Labor Day travel.

POSTED JUNE 25, 2019 4:32 PM

John Roberts Isn’t the Conservative You Thought He Was

John Roberts Isn’t the Conservative You Thought He WasJoe Raedle/GettyIn a surprise setback for small-government conservatives, Chief Justice John Roberts on Wednesday provided the swing vote to save a key piece of the administrative state: judicial deference to agency interpretations of regulations.That subject may sound arcane, but (for better or for worse) it is the bedrock of the regulatory state as we know it. And prior to today’s surprise, conservatives thought this case was in the bag.Instead, thanks to Chief Justice Roberts, they lost big. Indeed, as angry as some conservatives still are over Roberts (twice) saving Obamacare, he now has defied expectations to save the administrative state as we know it. When agencies make regulations—environmental rules, labor standards, health regulations—they’re routinely taken to court. It’s almost part of the process at this point: Either corporations complain that the rules are too strict, or public-interest groups complain that they’re too lax.But courts don’t look at the rules from scratch. They defer to agencies’ interpretations of the laws they enforce, in what’s called Chevron deference, or to the regulations they have written, in what’s called Auer deference. Auer deference was at issue in today’s case, Kisor v. Wilkie.That deference doesn’t mean that the agencies always win, but it means that in ambiguous cases, their interpretation of the statute or rule will prevail if it’s reasonable—even if the court might prefer to interpret it a different way.The applications of this rule are infinite. Justice Elena Kagan, writing for the majority, gave several real-world examples, ranging from the profound to the absurd. Does truffle paté count as a liquid for airport security? Must wheelchair seating at a basketball game offer sight-lines for when everyone else is standing, or only when everyone else is seated? When is a miner’s lung disease serious enough to trigger health regulations? When can drug companies prohibit generic alternatives from being brought to market?If courts answer these kinds of questions from scratch, they, not the administrative agencies, would effectively be making the rules. Every challenge to every regulation would mean throwing out the agency’s work and substituting the courts’ judgment for theirs. It would handcuff the administrative state.Which is precisely the point.“This case has to be understood against the background of conservatives’ attack on the administrative state,” said Columbia Law School Prof. Gillian Metzger when the case was argued in March. “The attack on Auer deference is to make it harder for agencies to develop coherent, well-functioning regulatory regimes.” Conservatives thought they had a slam-dunk in this case. They argued that when an agency interprets its own rules, it’s violating the Constitution’s separation of powers. Interpretation of regulations is a judge’s job. Moreover, it’s unfair. As Justice Brett Kavanaugh put it in his opinion today, “Umpires in games at Wrigley Field do not defer to the Cubs manager’s in-game interpretation of Wrigley’s ground rules. So too here.”But they hadn’t counted on Chief Justice Roberts, and his longstanding commitment to judicial principles like respect for precedent.While it was Justice Elena Kagan, not Chief Justice Roberts, who wrote the court’s opinion, that opinion focused on stare decisis (“stand by the decision”), the court’s principle that precedents should stand unless they are unworkable and unreasonable. That is the kind of judicial-conservative position that Chief Justice Roberts is, by now, famous (or infamous) for upholding.Auer deference actually goes back to 1945, when the court held that when “the meaning of [a regulation] is in doubt,” the agency’s interpretation “becomes of controlling weight unless it is plainly erroneous or inconsistent with the regulation.” That is a longstanding precedent, and, as Justice Kagan noted, it has not proven unworkable in practice. That being said, the court’s opinion—as Chief Justice Roberts emphasized in his own short concurrence—did draw new limits around Auer deference. The rule in question must be “genuinely ambiguous” according to a court’s interpretation of ambiguity. The interpretation must still be “reasonable.” And courts can inquire into the “character and context of the agency interpretation.” If there’s evidence in the record that the agency violated administrative procedure, for example, Auer deference would not apply. Likewise, the decision must be adopted by the agency itself, not just an ad hoc statement by a single department. It must be related to the agency’s expertise. And it must represent a “fair and considered judgment.”Those are serious limitations, to be sure. But the basic principle of agency deference remains in place.John Roberts Sides With Supreme Court’s Liberals to Save Your Digital PrivacyJust look at Justice Neil Gorsuch’s opinion for how upsetting this is to proponents of smaller government. Gorsuch said the rule creates “systematic judicial bias in favor of the federal government, the most powerful of parties, and against everyone else.” It “force[s] litigants and lower courts to jump through needless and perplexing new hoops and in the process den[ies] the people the independent judicial decisions they deserve.” And it was adopted “without ever pausing to consider whether a rule like that could be legally justified or even made sense.”Those are strong words, but they reflect the profound philosophical and practical issues in play. Justice Gorsuch is being consistent: In a different case today, he sided with the court’s liberals in protecting the constitutional rights of a sex offender; his civil libertarianism is emerging as one of the most interesting features of the court’s current term. And here, he sides with the conservatives to limit the reach of the federal government. Restraining government is paramount.For Chief Justice Roberts, however, Auer deference comes from a 74-year-old Supreme Court precedent, and that deserves respect.Finally, today’s decision may prove crucial for the most controversial issue of all: abortion.This year, the court’s justices have offered widely different understandings of stare decisis. Last month, for example, Justice Clarence Thomas wrote that the doctrine is “‘not an inexorable command” and depends on “the quality of the decision’s reasoning.” That would easily allow for overturning Roe v. Wade and other cases that Justice Thomas believes are of dubious “quality.”In response, Justice Stephen Breyer wondered “which cases the court will overrule next” under such a flimsy doctrine of precedent.Today, the court, including Chief Justice Roberts, took a much more robust line. Justice Kagan noted that Auer was rooted in a “long line of precedents” and that “adherence to precedent is ‘a foundation stone of the rule of law.’” If this approach to stare decisis, rather than Justice Thomas’, is applied to the long line of cases beginning with Roe v. Wade, it would lead to upholding the right to abortion.Imagine how angry conservatives will be with Chief Justice Roberts then.Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.

POSTED JUNE 26, 2019 12:01 PM

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