U.S. Justice Department | KERA News

U.S. Justice Department

Updated 4:20 p.m. ET, May 18

The acting head of the Justice Department's civil rights division, John Gore, dodged questions from lawmakers Friday about why the department requested a controversial citizenship question to be added to 2020 census forms.

Updated at 9:15 p.m. ET

Congressional Republicans say they still support special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian election interference even as the president continued his offensive Sunday against the investigation, as well as a recently fired high-ranking FBI official, Andrew McCabe.

Trump sent a flurry of tweets Sunday morning, in which he painted the Mueller-led special counsel probe as a politically biased witch hunt.

Updated at 12:30 a.m. ET Saturday

Attorney General Jeff Sessions fired outgoing FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe on Friday even though he was on the doorstep of retiring and receiving his pension after two decades of service to the bureau.

President Trump responded on Twitter just after midnight Saturday, calling McCabe's firing "a great day for the hard working men and women of the FBI - A great day for Democracy."

One year ago this week, Jeff Sessions stood beaming in the Oval Office as he awaited his swearing-in as the 84th attorney general of the United States.

On that day last February, President Trump signed executive orders on violent crime and gangs, pledging that a "new era of justice begins." And, in the year that followed, Sessions has managed to transform the Justice Department, particularly in the areas of civil rights, immigration and drugs.

As the prospect of a long-term immigration deal for young people who were brought to the country illegally as children dwindles, the Justice Department is appealing a court ruling that blocked the Trump administration from ending the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.

The department says it will take "the rare step" later this week of filing a petition asking the Supreme Court to intervene.

A federal judge in Chicago has ruled that the Trump administration may not withhold public-safety grants to so-called sanctuary cities. The decision issued Friday is a setback to the administration's efforts to force local jurisdictions to help federal authorities crack down on illegal immigration.

From Texas Standard:

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced Friday that the Department of Justice would be cracking down on what he calls the "culture of leaking" that has besieged the Trump administration.

 


Chicago's Mayor Rahm Emanuel is pushing back against the federal government.

On Monday, the city is filing suit against the Department of Justice, which announced it would withhold millions of dollars in police grant money from so-called sanctuary cities.

Emanuel is suing because he says new rules for a federal crime-fighting grant go against the Constitution and the city's values.

"Chicago will not let our police officers become political pawns in a debate," Emanuel said.

Austin Price / The Texas Tribune

For about a year starting in June 2016, the practice of affirmative action in Texas university admissions seemed secure. 

Updated 2 p.m.

A day late, the Justice Department complied this morning with a federal court order and released part of a security clearance form dealing with Attorney General Jeff Sessions' contacts with foreign governments.

On June 12, a judge had ordered the agency to provide the information within 30 days, a deadline that passed on Wednesday.

In a filing Thursday morning with the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, the Justice Department released that part of Sessions' form which poses the question:

The federal government has officially thrown its support behind Texas' so-called sanctuary cities ban.

The U.S. Department of Justice filed a statement of interest in federal court Friday in the case brought by several cities, including Austin, that seeks to block enforcement of Senate Bill 4.

Updated at 7:15 p.m. ET.

The U.S. Justice Department has escalated its approach to so-called sanctuary cities, writing at least eight jurisdictions Friday to put them on notice they could be failing to cooperate with immigration authorities.

Alan Hanson, the acting assistant attorney general for the Justice Department's grant-making arm, warned the cities that they're required to submit proof that they comply with federal immigration law.

Feds Sue To Block Acquisition Of Dallas Radioactive Waste Company

Nov 19, 2016
David Bowser for The Texas Tribune

The U.S. Justice Department is suing to block a Salt Lake City-based company's acquisition of Waste Control Specialists, the Dallas-based company that wants to expand the nuclear waste dump it operates in West Texas.

Doualy Xaykaothao / KERA News

Dallas city officials announced Monday afternoon that Virgin America will get the two open gates at Dallas Love Field. Virgin beat out Dallas-based Southwest Airlines for the gates, which American Airlines had to give up due to its merger with U.S. Airways.

Flickr.com

Now that American Airlines and US Airways have settled their suit with the Justice Department, their planned merger can take off.  But some worry that fares will soar as a result.  

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

Dallas County’s Truancy Court has spent the summer in the spotlight. The U.S.  Department of Justice is looking into allegations that students were denied their constitutional rights.  The County rejects the charges. Meet two kids who’ve been through system.

Ron Monroe / Flickr.com

Some small town Texas mayors and leaders don’t buy fears that American Airlines, merged with U.S. Airways, will lead to higher fares and lost service.

KC Ivey / Flickr Creative Commons

Federal election monitors are on the ground in Dallas and Harris counties as early voting begins for the 2012 presidential election.

SP8254 / (cc) flickr

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott has petitioned to throw out part of the Voting Rights Act, saying it’s unconstitutional. It follows the Justice Department’s move earlier this week to block the state’s Voter ID law. KERA’s Bill Zeeble reports one professor isn’t sure The AG’s argument is persuasive enough.

Texas Republicans are fuming over the U.S. Justice Department’s rejection of the state’s Voter Identification law. KERA’s Bill Zeeble reports as a result of the ruling, primary voters may not have to produce a photo ID in order to cast a ballot this spring.

The Justice Department's civil rights division has objected to the new photo ID requirement for voters in Texas, saying many Hispanic voters lack state-issued identification.

The department says the state has failed to show that the newly enacted law has neither a discriminatory purpose nor effect.

In a letter to Texas officials, the Justice Department says Hispanic voters in Texas are as much as 120 percent more likely than non-Hispanic voters to lack a driver's license or personal state-issued photo ID.

Bill Zeeble

The owner of a Texas medical service provider is among seven people indicted in a health care fraud scheme that allegedly bilked Medicare and Medicaid of nearly $375 million.