Toeing the Line: Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner’s Possible Conflicts of Interest as Federal Employees

Source: Alex Brandion/AP via www.nydailynews.com

By Elizabeth Rice

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Federal employees are required to adhere to ethical standards of conduct, including eliminating conflicts of interest that may arise from their business and financial assets.  In their roles as federal employees, Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner continue to hold business and financial assets that may result in conflicts of interest in the course of their duties.  This note provides a general background about federal conflicts of interest, including the process of divestiture federal employees must follow.  It then examines more closely the problematic assets of Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner, and the ways in which they may manage these assets so as to avoid conflicts of interest.… Read the rest

Internet Speech as Commerce: Tackling the Violent Left

Source: Getty Images via www.bbc.com

By Julian Jankowski

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A faction of the left has so increased in boldness in the past few years as to cause violence and an effective reign of terror to any who would dare question the faction’s central tenants.  This faction under the name Antifa gained in strength through the support of college students, academics, university administration, and technological giants that traffic in the dissemination of information.  This constitutes a clear and present threat to the health of the body politic of the United States.  This threat in universities must be met by removing university courses and policies that lend its strength to this violent faction on the left, and by implementing anti-propaganda policies in universities to ensure this threat is not repeated.  Further, technological companies must be given monetary and tax subsidies to create an incentive for affected technological companies to … Read the rest

Disclosure Dilemma: Is Disclosure to the Government Enough to Invoke the False Claims Act’s Public Disclosure Bar?

Source: Policy & Medicine

By Daniel Naydenov

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The federal government has a significant financial interest in the $3 trillion dollar health care industry. Due to limited administrative resources, the government’s biggest allies in the fight against health care fraud are individual whistleblowers who are able to file lawsuits under the False Claims Act’s qui tam provisions and share in the recovery. The Act contains a public disclosure bar to prevent parasitic suits by opportunistic whistleblowers. This Note analyzes two contrasting decisions from the Sixth and Seventh Circuits interpreting who qualifies as the “public.” In both cases, the court was asked to determine whether a health care provider’s self-disclosure of misconduct to the federal government was sufficiently public to bar future suits. Ultimately, this Note argues that the Seventh Circuit’s interpretation is more persuasive and closer to striking the proper balance between incentivizing whistleblowers and inhibiting opportunism.… Read the rest

Lack of Legal Duty to Fill Vacancies on the United States Export-Import Bank’s Board of Directors May Destroy Ex-Im Bank

Sources: Ex-Im Bank; CNN

By Michal Nowicki

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This Note examines whether the President of the United States has a statutory duty to nominate candidates to fill vacancies on the United States Export-Import Bank’s five-person Board of Directors. With only two of the five seats occupied, Ex-Im Bank’s Board of Directors cannot currently approve the financing of large export credit transactions, because at least three board members must be present to establish quorum for conducting official business. As a result, the Bank’s power is severely limited. Although this Note argues that President Trump is not legally obligated to fill Ex-Im Bank board vacancies, it offers an argument the Bank’s supporters can use to persuade President Trump to restore the agency to its full potential.… Read the rest