Thumbs-Down to Montana Speech Controls, Split Decision on Arizona Immigration Law, Drones Visit Margaritaville: P.M. Links
Montana's effort to bypass the Citizens United ruling and muzzle political speech got a thumbs-down from the Supremes.
- With its ruling on Arizona's SB 1070, the Supreme Court voided several portions, but left intact a controversial requirement that police check the immigration status of anybody they stop who they suspect is in the U.S. illegally.
- Mandatory life sentences for juveniles don't pass muster with the Supreme Court. The decision is already having an impact beyond the involved states of Alabama and Arkansas, potentially reopening cases in states including Massachusetts.
- Even America's drones enjoy a trip to the Caribbean — the Department of Homeland Security plans to more than double the number of square miles now covered by its nine surveillance drones with flights intended to spot drug smugglers at sea.
- Sandy Springs, Georgia, has out-sourced most of the city government's functions — even permits and the municipal court — to private companies. Residents seem happy with the results, while the usual suspects rend their clothes and wail about "privatopia."
- Spain made it official, with a request to the rest of the eurozone for help digging itself out of a financial hole. It could ask for some or all of a €100 billion package crafted for this eventuality. In response, investors head for the hills.
- New Jersey's state Assembly will vote on a bill that would reduce penalties for being caught with less than half an ounce of marijuana — which Governor "Buzzkill" Christie promises to veto if it passes. Christie cites "the children" in his opposition to the proposal, but a new study finds no link between looser laws related to the medical marijuana movement and growing recreational use among teens.
- A Tacoma, Washington, public school's ban on sunscreen resulted in severe sunburn for an albino girl and her sister. Similar policies are common throughout the country.
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