Today’s Headlines and Commentary

Chas Kissick
Wednesday, June 10, 2020, 2:36 PM

Lawfare’s daily roundup of national security news and opinion

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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell tapped fellow Republican Senator Tim Scott to lead a working group on police reform, the Washington Post reports. The Republican plan is expected to mandate that states maintain databases of fatal police shootings of civilians or risk loss of federal funds, increase training for officers and create a national police commission that will develop best practice recommendations for local policymakers.

Democratic legislators asked the inspector general of the Department of the Interior to investigate the Park Police's response to protests since the killing of George Floyd and to create a website where people present at the protests can upload videos documenting actions taken by the police, according to the Hill.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) wrote a letter to the U.N. Human Rights Council requesting an emergency session to investigate U.S. police violence in violation of international law, the Hill writes.

The U.S. Defense Department missed a Monday deadline set by seven Democratic senators to report the cost of deploying active-duty troops to Washington, D.C. in response to protests last week, Foreign Policy reports.

The rollout of Georgia's new machine voting system, which created paper backups for the first time in 18 years, resulted in long lines for the state's primary elections. Statewide Voting Implementation Manager Gabriel Sterling said that poll workers set up the equipment incorrectly. Hundreds of poll workers recently quit due to coronavirus fears, leading to late hirings and on-the-job training, the Atlanta Journal Constitution writes.

Twenty-two Republican members of the House Armed Services Committee wrote a letter urging President Trump not to slash U.S. troops in Germany, according to the Hill.

Republican Senator Josh Hawley wrote a letter to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) requesting that it investigate Zynn, a fellow Chinese rival of TikTok, for predatory pricing and violations of the online rights of children, the Hill writes.

A federal grand jury indicted Charles Lieber, the former head of Harvard's Chemistry and Chemical Biology Department, for lying about his involvement in China's Thousand Talents Plan, Politico reports.

The U.S. has deployed two aircraft carriers to the Pacific amid increasing Chinese activity in the region reported by Taiwan and Japan. The Navy has taken steps to mitigate the risk of coronavirus spread on the carriers, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Afghan officials report that the coronavirus pandemic has created fissures within Taliban leadership that may derail the delicate peace process between Kabul and the Taliban, according to Foreign Policy.

ICYMI: Yesterday on Lawfare

Steve Vladeck wrote about the Justice Department's troubling explanation for out-of-state National Guard units in Washington D.C.

Stewart Baker shared an interview with Ben Buchanan and the news roundup on the Cyberlaw Podcast.

Jordan Schneider shared an interview with New Yorker correspondent Evan Osnos on the ChinaTalk podcast.

Lester Munson shared an episode of the Fault Lines podcast discussing how the U.S. should approach international arms control treaties.

Scott Anderson and Benjamin Wittes reported that they—along with Protect Democracy and Democracy Forward— sued President Donald Trump to release the war powers report that was due to Congress three months ago.

Matthew Aiesi and Amanda Minikus argued that the U.S. should be using the lexicon of jus ad bellum rather than the rules of engagement in deterrence signalling.

Jen Patja Howell shared an episode of the Lawfare Podcast featuring Margaret Taylor's interview with Josh Chafetz about the importance of congressional overspeech.

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Chas Kissick works with Lawfare’s Trustworthy Hardware and Software Working Group. He is a Master's student at Duke University's Sanford School of Public Policy and UNC Chapel Hill's Kenan-Flagler Business School.

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