12-14-2019  10:13 pm   •   PDX Weather    •   SEA weather  
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Louisiana State University President Heading to Oregon Job

F. King Alexander will succeed Ed Ray, who is retiring from the position at Oregon State University at the end of June after 17 years as president. Ray will continue in a teaching role at the university

PHOTOS: Black Santa Visits Northwest African American Museum

The Skanner's Seattle photographer Susan Fried was on hand to snap some photos

English Language Learners' Success Translates Into a $25,000 Milken Educator Award for Teacher Julie Rowell

Oregon educator boosts student achievement and future prospects at Gresham High School

Portland Resident Hoping to Donate Kidney to Black Recipient

Fewer Black patients receive live kidney donations

NEWS BRIEFS

Friends of the Children Chapter Coming to Tacoma, Executive Director Announced

Organization empowers youth facing the greatest obstacles through the long-term support of professional mentors ...

Oregon Humane Society Celebrates the Adoption of the 11,000th Pet of 2019

Max, a two-year-old Labrador/Weimaraner mix, is going to a new home with the Dunlap family of Damascus ...

EPA Approves Funding for Oregon and Washington to Improve Drinking Water, Wastewater Infrastructure

States estimate $190 million for wastewater, $35 million for drinking water projects in Oregon, and $120 million for...

Conservation Breakthrough for Endangered Butterfly

The Oregon Zoo's breeding success provides new hope in an effort to save Oregon silverspots ...

Meet 80 Local Authors at OHS 52nd Holiday Cheer Book Sale and Signing

This free Oregon Historical Society event will be held this Sunday, December 8 from 12 p.m. – 4 p.m. ...

Man convicted of hate crime for punching transgender woman

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — An Oregon man convicted of punching a transgender woman has been sentenced to probation. Dominick Gonzales, 38, changed his plea Friday and was convicted of first-degree bias crime for punching the woman in Northwest Portland in September, Multnomah County District...

Oregon Supreme Court upholds district attorney suspension

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The Oregon Supreme Court upheld a decision to suspend a district attorney for lying to investigators. Wasco County District Attorney Eric Nisley will be suspended from practicing law for two months beginning in February, the court ruled Thursday. The ruling upholds...

New Missouri coach Eli Drinkwitz predicts success

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Eli Drinkwitz was saying all the right things after being introduced as the new football coach at Missouri, laying out his vision for the once-proud program with unwavering confidence and bold proclamations.Then the former Appalachian State coach made a minor...

LSU's Burrow, Auburn's Brown named AP SEC players of year

LSU quarterback Joe Burrow is a unanimous selection as the offensive player of the year on The Associated Press All-Southeastern Conference football team.The top-ranked Tigers also have the SEC’s coach of the year in Ed Orgeron and the newcomer of the year in freshman cornerback Derek...

OPINION

Will You Answer the Call for Moral Revival?

In embracing and expanding the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Revs. Barber and Theoharis have asked Presidential candidates to consider a debate that focuses exclusively on poverty ...

What I’m Thankful For This Season

Ray Curry gives thanks for a human right that shaped our country throughout the 20th century and that made Thanksgiving possible for so many Americans who, like him, didn’t get here by way of the Mayflower ...

Congressional Black Caucus Members Visit U.S.-Mexico Border: “Mistreatment of Black Immigrants is Another ‘Stain on America’”

Members said they witnessed first-hand the deplorable treatment and plight of Black immigrants ...

Portland, I'm Ready

Last month I had the privilege to stand with hundreds of supporters and announce my intention to run for re-election ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Former Gary, Indiana, Mayor Richard Hatcher dead at 86

Former Gary Mayor Richard Hatcher, who became one of the first black mayors of a big U.S. city when he was elected in 1967, has died. He was 86.Hatcher died Friday night at a Chicago hospital, said his daughter, Indiana state Rep. Ragen Hatcher, a Gary Democrat. She did not provide a cause of her...

Reparations mark new front for US colleges tied to slavery

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) — The promise of reparations to atone for historical ties to slavery has opened new territory in a reckoning at U.S. colleges, which until now have responded with monuments, building name changes and public apologies. Georgetown University and two theological seminaries...

AP Exclusive: China tightens up on info after Xinjiang leaks

The Xinjiang regional government in China’s far west is deleting data, destroying documents, tightening controls on information and has held high-level meetings in response to leaks of classified papers on its mass detention camps for Uighurs and other predominantly Muslim minorities,...

ENTERTAINMENT

'Lemonade' by Beyoncé is named the AP's album of the decade

NEW YORK (AP) — The top 15 albums of the decade by Associated Press Music Editor Mesfin Fekadu:1. Beyoncé, “Lemonade”: At the beginning of this decade, Beyoncé was already the greatest singer of her generation. She won a record six Grammys in a single night, had women...

'Mad Men' actress Christina Hendricks files for divorce

LOS ANGELES (AP) — “Mad Men” actress Christina Hendricks filed for divorce Friday from her husband of 10 years, actor Geoffrey Arend. Hendricks filed the marriage dissolution documents in Los Angeles Superior Court, citing irreconcilable differences. The 44-year-old Hendricks...

‘Rise of Skywalker’ is almost here, but a dark side looms

LOS ANGELES (AP) — When Disney bought Lucasfilm for more than billion in 2012, there were lofty expectations of reviving “Star Wars” in spectacular hyper-speed fashion with a new trilogy that continued the story of Luke Skywalker and other beloved characters.The space saga...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Preservation or development? Brazil’s Amazon at a crossroads

TRAIRAO, Brazil (AP) — Night falls in Brazil’s Amazon and two logging trucks without license plates...

Under pressure, Hallmark pulls gay-themed wedding ads

NEW YORK (AP) — Under pressure from a conservative advocacy group, The Hallmark Channel has pulled ads for...

AP FACT CHECK: Trump's impeachment rage, Bloomberg on coal

WASHINGTON (AP) — As near-certain impeachment closes in on him, President Donald Trump raged at his...

Boris Johnson goes north to celebrate crushing election win

LONDON (AP) — British Prime Minister Boris Johnson pledged Saturday to repay the trust of voters in the...

Disagreement drags UN climate talks into a 2nd extra day

MADRID (AP) — U.N. climate talks in Madrid dragged into a second day of extra time Sunday, with officials...

Supporters of embattled Thai opposition party hold big rally

BANGKOK (AP) — Several thousand supporters of a popular opposition party in Thailand that is under threat...

McMenamins
Bill Mears CNN Supreme Court Producer

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday left in place a law that allows the Justice Department to stop suits against telecommunications companies for participating in wiretaps of potential terrorists.

The ruling was a key setback for civil libertarians challenging the broader powers of government since the September 11, 2001, attacks on the United States to use electronic surveillance to track potential threats in the name of national security.

The Justices declined to take up a challenge to the once-secret domestic eavesdropping program under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act -- this one involving the monitoring of information moving into and out of the United States.

Previous petitions dealing with alleged abuses of the surveillance law also have been rejected by the court. Another case will be heard later this month.

In this case, Verizon Communications, Sprint Nextel, and AT&T were accused of privacy violations by assisting the government with intelligence gathering following the hijack attacks on New York and Washington.

The law had previously required the government to justify a national security interest before any phone calls and emails originating in another country could be monitored. A federal judge had to sign any search warrant. But President George W. Bush secretly suspended that requirement following the attacks.

After "warrantless wiretapping" was exposed, the president and supporters in Congress moved to amend the law, which defenders contend is designed to target only foreigners living outside the United States.

The retroactive immunity was challenged in the class action suit turned aside by the high court on Tuesday.

Privacy groups worry such electronic dragnets could easily and unknowingly intrude on the privacy rights of U.S. citizens. The government calls that "speculation" but cites national security in refusing to provide specifics.

The lawsuits launched by a number of telecommunications customers cited the testimony of Mark Klein, a retired AT&T engineer from San Francisco, who claimed company executives gave government access to internal hardware.

The result, he testified, was "vacuum-cleaner surveillance of all the data crossing the Internet, whether that be people's email, web surfing or any other data."

In an appeal, the Electronic Frontier Foundation and the American Civil Liberties Union said the retroactive immunity was unconstitutional because it gave unfettered power to the executive branch -- namely the attorney general and the director of national intelligence -- to decide it could not be held accountable in court.

Attorney General Eric Holder has used that power to block about 30 suits.

Justice Samuel Alito did not participate in the appeal. Previously released financial records show he has owned telecommunications stock and likely recused himself to avoid the appearance of a conflict of interest.

The Supreme Court will hear a related challenge to the domestic surveillance program on October 29.

The larger issue involves the constitutionality of the government's electronic monitoring of targeted foreigners.

A federal appeals court in New York last year ruled domestic plaintiffs who deal with global clients and co-workers reasonably feared the government was reading and hearing their sensitive communications. Those groups took costly measures to avoid such intrusions.

The question to be addressed is whether certain Americans have "standing" to challenge the federal law without a specific showing they have been monitored.

Other lawsuits over the surveillance program that raise various legal issues are pending in lower courts.

The case rejected Tuesday is Hepting v. AT&T (11-1200). The case to be heard later this month is Clapper v. Amnesty International USA (11-1025)

 

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