senate

  • Patent Reform Tries Again Crunch Network

    Patent Reform Tries Again

    Patent reform, long a decidedly unsexy topic best discussed over a strong espresso, has been a hot topic in recent years. Even though Congress substantially overhauled the patent system just three and a half years ago with the passage of the America Invents Act, the continued public drumbeat (a drumbeat taken up by President Obama, among others) against “Patent Assertion… Read More

  • Gossip App Cloakroom Is Yik Yak For Washington Insiders Only

    Gossip App Cloakroom Is Yik Yak For Washington Insiders Only

    Capitol Hill feels a lot like a college, with thousands of twenty-somethings all working on the same campus, eating in cafeterias and taking summer recesses. Now the Hill even has its own Yik Yak with the launch of the anonymous forum Cloakroom. Cloakroom is a mobile app where Washington insiders can anonymously post their thoughts. You can only use Cloakroom if you are in the… Read More

  • Surveillance Reform Movement Rallies Ahead Of June 1 Deadline

    Surveillance Reform Movement Rallies Ahead Of June 1 Deadline

    After two years of roadblocks in reforming the National Security Agency programs revealed by Edward Snowden, it seems the viral John Oliver segment and impending program deadline are breathing new life into a reform movement that has seemed stagnant since late last year. Privacy advocates experienced a major setback in November when a surveillance reform bill, the FREEDOM Act, died in a… Read More

  • NSA Reform Dies In The Senate

    NSA Reform Dies In The Senate

    Well shit. A vote to proceed with the USA FREEDOM Act failed in the Senate after it did not collect the 60 votes that it needed. It failed 58 to 42. Before the vote, I noticed a slight change in the tone of people that I had on the phone: There was optimism that it could make it. It didn’t. You can stick a fork in NSA reform for this year, and this Congress. And, as I’ve said… Read More

  • White House Says It “Strongly Supports” The Senate’s NSA Reform Bill

    White House Says It “Strongly Supports” The Senate’s NSA Reform Bill

    The White House issued a statement this afternoon saying that it “strongly supports” the Senate’s USA FREEDOM Act, which could see a vote this week. The bill would curtail some practices of the United States’ surveillance apparatus. Congress, in this lame duck session, only has so many hours and days to conduct its final business. Before the session, it seemed… Read More

  • NSA Surveillance Faces Senate Test

    NSA Surveillance Faces Senate Test

    The United States Senate could vote on the USA FREEDOM Act as soon as next week, pushing the surveillance reform bill ahead this year. That would buck prior conventional wisdom that the Act was not a legislative priority, likely ending up shelved until the next Congress. There is still some fight in this Congress after all. Read More

  • NSA Reform Drifts Sideways In The Senate

    NSA Reform Drifts Sideways In The Senate

    According to Senate sources speaking to The Hill, the White House would prefer not to pass NSA reform in the coming lame duck Congressional session. Current chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Senator Patrick Leahy, is trying to press forward with a vote on the bill that he authored — the USA FREEDOM Act — this year. The legislation has attracted approbation from… Read More

  • Senate Passes Cellphone Unlocking Bill That Lets You Use Your Phone With Another Carrier

    Senate Passes Cellphone Unlocking Bill That Lets You Use Your Phone With Another Carrier

    The Senate passed a bill that that legalized phone unlocking, which allows consumers to switch carriers with the same phone once a their contract is up. Read More

  • Senators Call On Obama For More Transparency In The Intelligence Community

    Two senators who scolded the intelligence community for failing to provide a sufficient transparency report are taking their complaints to the White House. Senators Al Franken and Dean Heller asked President Barack Obama “to support stronger transparency provisions” in a letter Tuesday. The senators urged Obama to endorse their bill that would require the intelligence community… Read More

  • Soon Even Your Mom Can Invest: Senate Passes Crowdfunding Bill 73-26 (With Protections)

    Soon Even Your Mom Can Invest: Senate Passes Crowdfunding Bill 73-26 (With Protections)

    Well, this just in from a dispatch on Capitol Hill: The Senate has passed legislation that will essentially legalize crowdfunding in startups by practically anyone — even your mom. U.S. Senators Scott Brown (R-Mass.), Jeff Merkley (D-Oreg.), and Michael Bennet (D-Colo.) collectively introduced the “CROWDFUND Act” (S. 2190) earlier this month, which adds measures to the House… Read More