Following the September 11 terrorist attacks, Congress passed and President Bush signed the USA Patriot Act—legislation intended to thwart the threat of domestic terrorism. Critics were quick to denounce USA Patriot as a dangerous expansion of government power at the expense of our civil liberties. Are the critics right? Or can we win the war on terrorism without sacrificing our civil liberties here at home? And what has the American experience in earlier crises, such as the Civil War and the two world wars, taught us about balancing national security and personal freedom?
It is estimated that currently there are between 7 and 10 million illegal immigrants in this country. Meanwhile the Border Patrol has grown from a staff of 2,000 and a $100 million budget 30 years ago to 11,000 men and women and a $9 billion budget today. Clearly, our attempts to control illegal immigration have not been working. But what should we do instead? President Bush has proposed a new immigration plan that would turn illegal immigrants already here into legal temporary workers. Is his plan an acknowledgment that our economy needs cheap immigrant labor and that we simply can't control our borders any longer? Or is his plan the entirely wrong way to address the immigration problem?
On December 12, 2000, the Supreme Court of the United States brought an end to thirty-six days of dramatic vote recounts and legal challenges in the state of Florida. The decision let stand the initial results of Florida's election, which gave the state's electoral votes, and thus the Presidency, to George W. Bush. What was the legal justification for the Supreme Court's decision? Should the Court have intervened in the first place? And what precedent did the Court create for future elections?
In March 2002, President Bush signed into law the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act, better known as the McCain-Feingold Bill. The law bans political contributions known as "soft money"—that is, money from corporations, unions, and other organizations given to political parties for "party-building activities," thereby skirting campaign contribution limits. The Supreme Court has now taken up McCain-Feingold and will determine whether all or parts of the act will be upheld or overturned. Are soft money bans legal? Or do such campaign finance restrictions infringe on freedom of speech? Just how should the Court decide?
As required by the Constitution, the president of the United States is elected not by the national popular vote but by the vote of the Electoral College. In the Electoral College, each state receives as many votes as it has members of Congress. Because every state has two senators and is guaranteed at least one House member, votes of small states count more heavily than votes of large states. Has the Electoral College served the nation well? Or should it be abolished and replaced by a system in which every vote counts the same? Peter Robinson speaks with Jack Rakove and Tara Ross
In the new online volume, Future Challenges in National Security and Law, members of the Hoover Institution’s Koret-Taube Task Force on National Security and Law and guest contributors offer incisive commentary on the controversies that have erupted over national security law in the wake of the 9/11 attacks, laying the foundations for understanding such future issues...
The former FBI directors tend to investigate Republicans far more zealously than Democrats.
Democracy and freedom currently hang by a thread in Hong Kong. How much longer will China tolerate dissent before violently crushing the protests? What is America's role and responsibility in the fight to save liberty in Hong Kong?
William H. Rehnquist has served as chief justice of the United States Supreme Court for nineteen years, the longest tenure of a chief justice in a century. How has the Rehnquist Court responded to the key constitutional issues of our times? What will be the philosophical legacy of the man himself? And who will miss him more, liberals or conservatives? Peter Robinson speaks with Kathleen Sullivan and John Yoo.
Peter Schweizer, the William J. Casey Research Fellow at the Hoover Institution, unveils his current research, on Fox News, which exposes the corruption and extortion accepted as business as usual in Washington, DC. Last year, the CBS news magazine 60 Minutes featured Schweizer, spotlighting his book Throw Them All Out: How Politicians and Their Friends Get Rich off Insider Stock Tips, Land Deals, and Cronyism That Would Send the Rest of Us to Prison. Feedback from the program helped pass the Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge Act, which prohibits members and employees of Congress from using nonpublic information for private gain.
In this Uncommon Knowledge interview from November 24, 2008, Thiel argues that a book published in France in 1968, Le Defi Americain (The American Challenge), has a lot to say to us in 2008, including why the United States has failed to rise to the heights predicted by its author, J. J. Servan-Schreiber. In explaining what’s wrong with the US economy, Thiel points out that, although we have benefited from growth that is both extensive (e.g., free trade) and intensive (e.g., technology), we have not featured enough of each. He asserts that the credit crisis of 2008 had nothing to do with the failings of the free market but rather is a by-product of government entanglement, nurtured by the motors of economic growth, working less well than expected. (38:56)
Although hardly anyone's noticed, billionaire financier George Soros and some other very deep pockets are back on the California ballot with a drug and criminal sentencing reform measure that makes their prior efforts seem modest...
What happens when South Korean students take a close look at American democracy. By Peter Berkowitz.
What sustains the conservative agenda? What makes it distinctive and coherent? In a word, principle. By Peter Berkowitz.
Peter Berkowitz on God and Gold: Britain, America, and the Making of the Modern World by Walter Russell Mead
Richard Epstein, the Peter and Kirsten Bedford Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, analyzes the immigration debate with special focus on H1-B visas.
Richard Epstein, the Peter and Kirsten Bedford Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, discusses the congressional proposals for immigration reform.
Congressman Paul Ryan discusses, with Hoover research fellow Peter Robinson, the importance of repealing Obamacare.
With a new law on military commissions, Congress sent the Supreme Court a message, loud and clear: Get out of the war on terror. By John Yoo.