Tag Archives: AG

PA Attorney General Refuses To Defend Marriage Law

By Breaking News

Marriage SC1 PA Attorney General Refuses to Defend Marriage Law

Editor’s note: Last week, the ACLU filed a federal lawsuit to overturn Pennsylvania’s marriage law. In response, in a stunning move, Pennsylvania’s attorney general refused to defend the law. The Center for Vision & Values contacted Pennsylvania Family Institute President Michael Geer for a battlefront view.

V&V: You had a busy week last week on the legal front. What happened?

Geer: The week began with a phone call from a major national newspaper reporter, from whom I learned that the ACLU was about to file a federal lawsuit seeking to overturn Pennsylvania’s marriage law, and redefine this ageless institution. The week ended with Pennsylvania’s attorney general announcing that she would refuse to fulfill the obligation of her office and defend our state law in court. In between were numerous national, state, and local media interviews, followed by time spent at the capitol organizing a response and crafting legal and cultural strategies to protect and strengthen marriage.

V&V: You’ve been running PFI in Harrisburg for more than 20 years now. Are you surprised by the AG’s refusal to defend Pennsylvania’s marriage law? Do you recall anything similar happening?

Geer: There really is no precedent that matches the blatantly political move by Attorney General [Kathleen] Kane. Even the lead counsel in the ACLU’s lawsuit against our marriage law called her decision “an earthquake moment.” In a television interview during last year’s primary campaign for attorney general, then-candidate Kane stated, “The attorney general does not have the right to pick and choose which laws he or she enforces.” She said doing so injects politics into the job and, “That’s a dangerous proposition.” Even so, I was not surprised at Kane’s action – she is following precedents set by AG’s and other top elected officials in California, Illinois, and elsewhere, and by those in the U.S. Department of Justice on this issue. It really is a dangerous proposition, one that’s very damaging to our political system and the rule of law. I hoped for better from Kathleen Kane, but was not surprised when she did not deliver on her promise

V&V: Is this issue pertinent to people in other states around the nation?

Geer: It is in many ways – most notably because ultimately the ACLU is seeking to not only overturn marriage laws in Pennsylvania, but to impose a redefinition of marriage on the entire country. Such a Roe v.Wade-type sweeping decision would certainly not end the debate on the issue, but would usher in significant restrictions on religious liberty and free speech, not to mention the impact on marriage itself and the well-being of children.

V&V: Is the ACLU filing similar suits in other states. If so, why? Do you detect a political agenda beyond the legal implications of these cases?

Geer: Yes and yes. In addition to the lawsuit in Pennsylvania, the ACLU announced that it was also planning to file constitutional challenges in Virginia and North Carolina. Quite clearly, they are hoping to bring one or all of these cases to the U.S. Supreme Court to have “same-sex …read more

Source: FULL ARTICLE at Western Journalism

Prosecutor: No foul by Va. AG for late reports

Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli won’t face charges for failing to promptly report thousands of dollars in personal gifts he received years earlier on his required state economic interest statements.

Richmond Commonwealth’s Attorney Mike Herring said Thursday that there’s no evidence Cuccinelli committed a crime. Cuccinelli is the Republican candidate for governor.

Cuccinelli omitted more than $13,000 worth of gifts including private jet flights and free vacation lodgings from his required state disclosure forms for a period of four years. He amended his filings from 2009 through 2012 in late April, saying he simply overlooked the gifts earlier.

Cuccinelli asked Herring at the time to examine whether he should be charged with a crime. Deliberately withholding gifts and other financial information on required economic disclosure filings is a misdemeanor.

…read more

Source: FULL ARTICLE at Fox US News

NXP Semiconductors Wants Cars to Talk to Each Other

By Rich Duprey, The Motley Fool

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It might seem like something out of Terminator: Rise of the Machines, but in an effort to make the roads safer as well as more efficient to travel upon, NXP Semiconductors is imagining a future where cars communicate not only with one another but with the road and environment around them.

Talk to me
Through a consortium of companies including car manufacturers like Honda and Audi, along with technology partners such as mapmaker TomTom, NEC, and TE Connectivity, as well as a number of universities and research institutes, NXP is looking to implement and deploy a wireless communications network between cars and the highway infrastructure around them.

For example, the technology would allow cars to communicate with one another and could  essentially “see” around corners to detect danger even before it was visible to the driver, or to warn of traffic jams or approaching emergency vehicles. 

Just last week the chip maker perhaps best known for its leadership in near-field communications signed a memorandum of understanding with one of the consortium partners, Cohda Wireless, to create a cooperative intelligent transportation system in Europe. In January, NXP and Cisco  announced  a significant investment in Cohda Wireless to develop a similar system in the U.S. The Transportation Department has been running a test in Michigan since last August testing vehicle awareness in more than 2,800 cars.

The Internet of Things
According to Cisco, more devices, appliances, and even cattle are connecting to the Internet than people (farmers can track the health of their “networked cows” via technology developed by Dutch start-up Sparked). In fact, the Internet became an “Internet of Things” as far back as 2008 when there were more devices connected than people on the Earth. Cisco predicts some 25 billion devices will be connected by 2015, and 50 billion by 2020.

NXP and Cohda have developed a wireless communication system that will complement Cisco’s “Internet of Things” infrastructure using Cohda’s 802.11p technology. That’s an amendment to the Wi-Fi LAN standard but designed specifically for automotive applications.

“Roadlink” will be the branded named of the new NXP and Cohda technology used for marketing a total car-to-X communication and security system for on-board units and road-side units in the intelligent transportation system of the future. Automotive-ready modules based on Roadlink are currently being developed by companies such as lesswire AG in Germany. The first C2X module from lesswire is expected to be available in 2015.

Cart before the horse?
Because it’s a consortium that’s developing the system, it will become a complete end-to-end solution right from the get-go and avoiding many of the chicken-or-egg scenarios that have plagued a number of technological advances, such as natural gas cars: Do you develop the refueling infrastructure first so that cars have a place to fill up, or do you make the cars first to prove there is demand to necessitate the expense to build the infrastructure?

Car-to-X has the potential to create vehicles that are more than simply passive receptacles through which information passes, but rather part of an active, holistic network where the very …read more

Source: FULL ARTICLE at DailyFinance

Why the Arkansas Pipeline Spill Won't Hurt Exxon Mobil's Reputation

By Jonathan Salem Baskin, Contributor Thousands of barrels of thick, black oil flowing like a river through a suburban Arkansas community. Residents evacuated. Pictures of birds and other wildlife coated in muck shared on the Internet. The EPA calls it a “major spill” and the state’s AG has just announced an investigation. The situation is a textbook corporate reputation crisis. …read more
Source: FULL ARTICLE at Forbes Latest

Weiss Family to Take American Greetings Private

By Rich Smith, The Motley Fool

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American Greetings said hello to a new ownership structure this morning.

The Cleveland-based greetings card manufacturer announced today that its chairman, chief executive officer, chief operating officer, and “related persons” — all hailing from the Weiss family —  have signed an agreement to take AG private.

They intend to buy out all other shareholders for $18.20 per share cash, plus a probable single $0.15-per-share dividend payment assuming a dividend is declared and the transaction closes in July 2013, as planned. Thus, the total value of the buyout is estimated at $878 million inclusive of the company’s debts.

The prospective buyers note that the basic price of $18.20 per share works out to a 13% premium over AG‘s closing price at the end of last week. As of this writing, investors are paying $18.09 per share for the company, responding to the buyout announcement by bidding the shares up 12.4% — but not beyond the Weiss family’s offer price — suggesting there’s little faith in a competing offer being made.

On the other hand, competitor CSS Industries shares sell for nearly twice the 0.3-times price-to-sales ratio of American Greetings‘ new share price, while the average stock in this industry costs more than 0.9 times sales. This suggests there may be room still left for another bidder to make a play.

The Weiss family first expressed its interest in a possible transaction last September. A committee set up to examine the offer unanimously recommends it.

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The article Weiss Family to Take American Greetings Private originally appeared on Fool.com.

Fool contributor Rich Smith has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of American Greetings. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Copyright © 1995 – 2013 The Motley Fool, LLC. All rights reserved. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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Source: FULL ARTICLE at DailyFinance

AG: Pa. sheriff threatened reporter, volunteer

Police have arrested a Pennsylvania county sheriff on charges he threatened to cut off the hands of a political campaign worker and pulled out a gun and threatened to shoot a newspaper reporter.

Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane announced the charges Monday against 65-year-old Beaver County Sheriff George David.

David is in custody and awaiting arraignment on charges including terroristic threats, witness intimidation and obstructing an investigation.

Online court records don’t list an attorney for the sheriff. Officials at the western Pennsylvania sheriff’s office referred calls to their attorney, who did not immediately return a message seeking comment.

The county commissioners could not immediately comment on David’s employment status.

The charges stem from encounters since November 2011 that were investigated by a state grand jury.

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Source: FULL ARTICLE at Fox US News

Google Agrees to Pay $7 Million to Settle Street View Wi-Fi Case

By Evan Niu, CFA, The Motley Fool

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Search giant Google has agreed to pay $7 million in order to settle claims related to its Google Maps Street View service.

The lawsuit involved 38 different states as well as the District of Columbia and centered on Google collecting data from Wi-Fi networks with its Street View cars between 2008 and 2010. According to a press release today from the office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley, Google said it was unaware of the data collection, but acknowledged that some information was gathered.

The company has removed the equipment and software from its Street View cars in order to address the privacy concerns, and said it would not collect any more data without consumer notice and consent, the AG said. Google intends to destroy the information that it collected, and said the data was not used for any commercial purpose.

According to the Massachusetts attorney general, the improperly gathered information may have included URLs of requested Web pages, partial or complete email communications, and confidential or private information being transmitted to or from the network user while the Street View cars were driving down streets.

As part of the agreement, Google will also conduct — for at least a decade — a training program for employees about privacy and confidentiality alongside an advertising campaign intended to increase public awareness of privacy issues.

The states involved were: Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, and Washington, and the District of Columbia.

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The article Google Agrees to Pay $7 Million to Settle Street View Wi-Fi Case originally appeared on Fool.com.

Fool contributor Evan Niu, CFA, has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Google. The Motley Fool owns shares of Google. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Copyright © 1995 – 2013 The Motley Fool, LLC. All rights reserved. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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Source: FULL ARTICLE at DailyFinance

Pa. AG taps ex-prosecutor to lead Sandusky probe

Keeping a campaign promise, Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane has named a special deputy to oversee an inquiry into the handling of the Jerry Sandusky child sexual abuse scandal.

Kane on Monday announced the appointment of former federal prosecutor H. Geoffrey Moulton Jr.

Moulton spent eight years as a prosecutor in the Philadelphia-based federal courts. He also served in senior positions in the federal government in Washington.

Kane promised during her campaign last year to investigate why it took the attorney general’s office nearly three years to charge Sandusky, a former Penn State assistant football coach. He’s in prison after being convicted of 45 child sexual abuse counts.

Gov. Tom Corbett was attorney general for most of that time. He has denied that politics were a factor in the investigation.

Source: FULL ARTICLE at Fox US News

Ariz. AG: Marshals working with polygamous sect

Arizona’s authorities are investigating whether marshals in a town dominated by one of the nation’s largest polygamous sects prevent women from leaving the church run by imprisoned leader Warren Jeffs, an allegation the local agency denies.

Attorney General Tom Horne announced the probe Tuesday in Phoenix involving the town of Colorado City, Ariz., near the Utah border, the home base of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

“Women who wanted to escape have been forcibly held by the marshals against their will,” he said.

Horne declined to provide details of the criminal probe of the FLDS and the Marshal’s Office, which serves as a small police force in the twin polygamous towns of Hildale, Utah, and Colorado City.

Attorneys for the two towns and the Marshal’s Office adamantly denied the charges, calling Horne’s words “inflammatory.”

“I can’t speak for the FLDS but the bottom line is the Marshal’s Office absolutely does not hold people against their will,” said lawyer Blake Hamilton. “The Arizona attorney general, as the highest ranking law enforcement official in Arizona, ought not be making those statements unless he has evidence of it.

“It’s just absolutely not true,” Hamilton said.

The church does not have a spokesman to speak on its behalf, and Jeffs, who is said to still rule the sect, is imprisoned for life in Texas after convictions on child sex and bigamy charges.

The criminal probe announced Tuesday mirrors the one that landed Jeffs in prison.

After receiving a complaint of child abuse, Texas authorities in 2008 raided the FLDS‘ Yearning for Zion Ranch. The move led to a chaotic roundup of 400 children living at the secretive location in what became one of the largest custody cases in U.S. history.

All of the children were eventually returned. But 11 men, including Jeffs and other high-ranking FLDS lieutenants, were arrested on charges of sexual assault or bigamy and later convicted.

Horne fought last for a bill in the Arizona Legislature aimed at abolishing the Marshal’s Office in Colorado City and replacing law enforcement there with deputies from the Mohave County Sheriff’s Office. It failed to pass, so he allocated funds to provide for limited patrols by deputies. He said that money will soon run out, and he is again asking the Legislature to take up the bill.

Horne was joined at a news conference by Flora Jessop, a vocal critic of the FLDS who fled the church in 1986. She was flanked by her sister, Ruby Jessop, and the woman’s six young children.

Flora Jessop said her sister, who did not speak Tuesday, had been held captive by the FLDS for years, undergoing sexual and mental abuse at the hands of her husband while not being allowed to leave with her kids. Ruby Jessop finally fled last year, and recently won temporary custody of her children who were being held “hostage” by the sect, Flora Jessop said.

“It’s a good day for freedom,” she said of the investigation.

Source: FULL ARTICLE at Fox US News