July 2017 media hits

Public Citizen is mentioned, or its experts quoted, every day in print and broadcast media around the world. Below are links to some of the recent stories in which we have appeared.

To Thwart The Trolls, Social-Media Sites Should Require Users' Real Names

7/28/2017
Los Angeles Times: To Thwart The Trolls, Social-Media Sites Should Require Users' Real Names by David Lazarus - Paul Levy, a lawyer with the advocacy group Public Citizen who wrote an amicus brief in the case defending Glassdoor, said the takeaway from the decision is that a company would need to show how it was harmed by an anonymous comment - a decline in revenue, say, or a falling stock price.

Trump Bank Regulator Nominees Under The Spotlight

7/27/2017
POLITICO: Trump Bank Regulator Nominees Under The Spotlight by Victoria Guida - Public Citizen, meanwhile, blasted the Fed nominee for making money through his stakes in troubled or failed banks, citing a Reuters story that pointed to his role in Carlyle Group’s investments in Boston Private Financial Holdings Inc. and BankUnited.

Business-Friendly Litigation Overhaul Stalls In Senate

7/27/2017
Bloomberg BNA: Business-Friendly Litigation Overhaul Stalls In Senate by Bruce Kaufman - Today, those plans appear to be in disarray, a surprise even to a host of consumer advocates including Pamela Gilbert and Joanne Doroshow, veteran opponents of the business-friendly “tort reform” movement, and Remington A. Gregg, Public Citizen’s new counsel for Civil Justice and Consumer Rights. Gregg, with Public Citizen, says he and other opponents “continue to worry about the Chamber of Commerce and big business’s strong hold on many Republicans, meaning that these and similar bills will continue to pop up in different iterations.”

DeVos Dystopia: What Trashing For-Profit College Rules Means For Students

7/26/2017
HuffPost: DeVos Dystopia: What Trashing For-Profit College Rules Means For Students by David Halperin - As if to join Zakarin’s angry celebration, the DeVos Department of Education used the court’s small tweak of the gainful employment rule, which the judge expressly wrote “avoids upending the entire GE regulatory scheme,” as a false excuse to put the regulation on hold pending a years-long repeat of the entire regulatory process.

DeVos Dystopia: What Trashing For-Profit College Rules Means For Students

7/26/2017
HuffPost: DeVos Dystopia: What Trashing For-Profit College Rules Means For Students by David Halperin - As if to join Zakarin’s angry celebration, the DeVos Department of Education used the court’s small tweak of the gainful employment rule, which the judge expressly wrote “avoids upending the entire GE regulatory scheme,” as a false excuse to put the regulation on hold pending a years-long repeat of the entire regulatory process.

Rx, Device Groups Tell FDA To Scrap Latest Off-Label Rule

7/26/2017
Bloomberg BNA: Rx, Device Groups Tell FDA To Scrap Latest Off-Label Rule by Dana A. Elfin - Public Citizen, a consumer group, said the industry groups’ concerns about the rule are unwarranted. Public Citizen has opposed loosening restrictions on off-label communications, saying relaxation of the restrictions could cause safety issues. “The final rule that was issued was appropriate and really doesn’t change the FDA’s approach to making a determination about whether a company is marketing a product for a particular use,” Michael Carome, the director of Public Citizen’s Health Research Group, told Bloomberg BNA in a July 25 phone call.

Democratic Groups: Delay FBI Director Vote Until Trump Promises To Keep Special Counsel

7/25/2017
POLITICO: Democratic Groups: Delay FBI Director Vote Until Trump Promises To Keep Special Counsel by Edward-Isaac Dovere - “The president’s comments demeaning the attorney general over his recusal in this matter, as well as his extraordinary reference to him as ‘beleaguered,’ raise deep concerns that the president may be considering a series of personnel changes seeking to terminate the investigation,” states the open letter sent Tuesday, signed by American Oversight, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics, Common Cause, Daily Kos, MoveOn.org, Protect Democracy, Public Citizen, Revolving Door Project and UltraViolet.

White House Touts Deregulatory Efforts

7/21/2017
POLITICO: White House Touts Deregulatory Efforts by Anthony Adragna - Many of the “procedural objections are not well-founded,” the three-judge panel wrote, adding that the proceedings were “extensive.” Public Citizen, which intervened in the case opposing the merger, said it was disappointed in the court decision, called the merger “a bad deal,” and was “considering” its next steps.

Then Were Was One: Wall St. Regulatory Panel Soon Down To Sole Board Member

7/21/2017
The Washington Post: Then Were Was One: Wall St. Regulatory Panel Soon Down To Sole Board Member by Renae Merle - “The happy impact is that arguably less is taking place than with a full compliment of commissioners,” said Bart Naylor, a financial policy advocate for the public interest group Public Citizen. “When he has a full commission he won’t have anything to retard that ambition.”

Ax Falls on 860 Obama Regulations

7/21/2017
The Washington Post: Ax Falls on 860 Obama Regulations by Juliet Eilperin and Damian Paletta - “These rollbacks of critical public protections will leave American workers, consumers and children vulnerable on a daily basis,” said Amit Narang, regulatory policy advocate for Public Citizen’s Congress Watch division, “to risks such as air and water pollution, unsafe products and tainted food, dangerous workplaces and a newly deregulated Wall Street that once again could threaten economic collapse.”

Trump’s Voter Commission Is Now Facing At Least 7 Federal Lawsuits

7/20/2017
The Washington Post: Trump’s Voter Commission Is Now Facing At Least 7 Federal Lawsuits by Christopher Ingraham - A similar lawsuit by the civil liberties group Public Citizen alleging that the commission's “collection and dissemination of [voter] information violates the Privacy Act, which prohibits the collection, use, maintenance or distribution of any 'record describing how any individual exercises rights guaranteed by the First Amendment.' ” The group is requesting a temporary restraining order on the committee's actions.

TRUMP CUTTING HUNDREDS OF PLANNED REGULATIONS

7/20/2017
Associated Press: TRUMP CUTTING HUNDREDS OF PLANNED REGULATIONS by Josh Boak - President Donald Trump's push to deregulate has led to concerns among environmentalists, labor unions and consumer watchdogs. The Natural Resources Defense Council has filed lawsuits saying that suspended rules regarding methane leaks violate the Clean Air Act. Public Citizen, a consumer advocacy group, issued a report Wednesday saying the deregulation push has been about rewarding corporate elites such as automakers and Wall Street firms.

U.S. Attempt to Limit Wall Street Bonuses Fizzles Out Quietly

7/20/2017
Reuters: U.S. Attempt to Limit Wall Street Bonuses Fizzles Out Quietly by Lisa Lambert - The move followed President Donald Trump's campaign pledges to lighten federal regulations that hurt liquidity and strangled business.  "They’re not even working on it," said Lisa Gilbert, who closely tracks Dodd-Frank implementation for the liberal-leaning public interest group Public Citizen.  She added that the rule was labeled "pending" in previous agendas. By law it was supposed to be completed by 2011.

Government Unmasking: US Court Will Rule In Secret If Government Can Unmask Glassdoor Users

7/20/2017
International Business Times: Government Unmasking: US Court Will Rule In Secret If Government Can Unmask Glassdoor Users by AJ Dellinger - President Trump's Drain the Swamp Report Card follows a Public Citizen report released Wednesday that details how the president "has fully abandoned populism in favor of giveaways to industry," from automakers and bankers to Big Pharma and fossil fuel companies. Thursday's report concludes "President Trump's grade on his first Drain the Swamp Report Card is a big F."

Trump Administration Cancels Hundreds Of Obama-Era Regulations

7/20/2017
The Washington Post: Trump Administration Cancels Hundreds Of Obama-Era Regulations by Juliet Eilperin - “These rollbacks of critical public protections will leave American workers, consumers and children vulnerable on a daily basis to risks such as air and water pollution, unsafe products and tainted food, dangerous workplaces and a newly deregulated Wall Street that once again could threaten economic collapse.”

Trump's 'MAGAnomics' Slashes Regulations By The Hundreds

7/20/2017
U.S. News & World Report: Trump's 'MAGAnomics' Slashes Regulations By The Hundreds by Andrew Soergel - "Without class-action lawsuits to keep things fair, corporate bad actors will get off scott-free when harming their customers," said Lisa Gilbert, vice president of legislative affairs for the consumer advocacy group Public Citizen.

UPDATE 1-U.S. Rule On Class-Action Suits Against Banks Under Fire In Congress

7/20/2017
Reuters: UPDATE 1-U.S. Rule On Class-Action Suits Against Banks Under Fire In Congress by Pete Schroeder - "Without class-action lawsuits to keep things fair, corporate bad actors will get off scott-free when harming their customers," said Lisa Gilbert, vice president of legislative affairs for the consumer advocacy group Public Citizen.

U.S. Unveils Trade Pact Goal

7/18/2017
Los Angeles Times: U.S. Unveils Trade Pact Goal by Don Lee - "The document is quite vague, so while negotiations can start in 30 days, it's unclear what will be demanded on key issues, whether improvements for working people could be in the offing or whether the worst aspects of the [Trans-Pacific Partnership] will be added, making NAFTA yet more damaging for working people," said Lori Wallach, director of Public Citizen's Global Trade Watch. Trump formally withdrew from the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a 12-nation free trade deal that former President Obama had completed but that failed to win congressional backing.

U.S. Calls for ‘Much Better Deal’ in Nafta Overhaul Plan

7/18/2017
The New York Times: U.S. Calls for ‘Much Better Deal’ in Nafta Overhaul Plan by Alan Rappeport - “It is surprising that in key areas the Trump administration is seeking outcomes that were achieved in the T.P.P., which the president said was a bad agreement,” said Senator Ron Wyden, the ranking Democrat on the Senate Finance Committee Lori Wallach, the director of Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch, said that she was concerned by the vagueness of the report and that the objectives did not directly buttress Mr. Trump’s “Buy American” vision.

NAFTA Negotiating Objectives Expected Today

7/18/2017
POLITICO: NAFTA Negotiating Objectives Expected Today by Megan Cassella - “Developing this document must be like mapping a minefield,” Lori Wallach, director of Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch, emailed Morning Trade. That’s because achieving Trump’s election-winning goals of creating more U.S. manufacturing jobs and reducing the NAFTA trade deficit “will require changes that congressional GOP leaders and the corporate lobby oppose,” she added.

Rob Kardashian Instagram: What Should Brands Do When Instagram 'Influencers' Go Off The Rails?

7/17/2017
International Business Times: Rob Kardashian Instagram: What Should Brands Do When Instagram 'Influencers' Go Off The Rails? by Denisse Moreno - The letter comes after Public Citizen and affiliated organizations filed petitions urging the FTC to take action on non-disclosed advertisements on Instagram.

Rob Kardashian Instagram: What Should Brands Do When Instagram 'Influencers' Go Off The Rails?

7/17/2017
International Business Times: Rob Kardashian Instagram: What Should Brands Do When Instagram 'Influencers' Go Off The Rails? by Denisse Moreno - The letter comes after Public Citizen and affiliated organizations filed petitions urging the FTC to take action on non-disclosed advertisements on Instagram.

How Trump the populist became Trump the corporate shill: Just six months in, he's doing the bidding of big business

7/14/2017
New York Daily News : How Trump the populist became Trump the corporate shill: Just six months in, he's doing the bidding of big business by Robert Weissmann - Public Citizen's research has found that more than 70% of Trump's picks for top sub-Cabinet jobs have clear corporate ties. Corporate influence extends to the President's daily schedule. Trump clearly enjoys the company of the corporate class. Since his inauguration, he has had 319 meetings with at least 260 corporate executives, including some repeat meetings, according to Public Citizen's tally.

Some Voters Unregistering After Trump Administration's Data Requests

7/14/2017
ABC News: Some Voters Unregistering After Trump Administration's Data Requests by Dylan Wells and Saisha Talwar - No state has yet to comply with the request in full, with 48 states either refusing to comply completely or only providing a portion of the information. Hawaii and Nebraska have not responded to the request. Critics of the letter include the ACLU and the advocacy groups Public Citizen, Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law and the Electronic Privacy Information Center. All four organizations have filed lawsuits against the commission's requests.

Lawmakers Can Use Campaign Funds For Home Security, F.E.C. Says

7/13/2017
The New York Times: Lawmakers Can Use Campaign Funds For Home Security, F.E.C. Says by Nicholas Fandos - Craig Holman, a lobbyist for Public Citizen, a Washington watchdog group, added that he hoped the commission and the Capitol Police would monitor how the funds are used and hold anyone who abuses the carve-out accountable.

Off-Label Rx Promotion Bills Would Affect Safety: House Democrats

7/12/2017
Bloomberg BNA: Off-Label Rx Promotion Bills Would Affect Safety: House Democrats by Bronwyn Mixter - Michael Carome, director of Public Citizen’s Health Research Group, July 11 urged the subcommittee in written comments to reject the two draft bills. “These bills would threaten patient health and safety by undermining the current regulatory regimes for ensuring that drugs and medical devices are safe and effective for each intended use,” Carome said.

CFPB Just Issued A New Rule That Would Protect Consumers From Predatory Fine Print

7/11/2017
TIME: CFPB Just Issued A New Rule That Would Protect Consumers From Predatory Fine Print by Megan Leonhardt - “Since most consumers cannot afford to take on a big corporation on their own, banks like Wells Fargo get away with ripping off large numbers of customers,” says Amanda Werner, arbitration campaign manager with Americans for Financial Reform and Public Citizen. “This new rule will help prevent this kind of widespread fraud and ensure consumers can fight back.”

The Deep Industry Ties Of Trump’s Deregulation Teams

7/11/2017
The New York Times: The Deep Industry Ties Of Trump’s Deregulation Teams by Danielle Ivory and Robert Faturechi - Amit Narang, a regulatory expert at the liberal advocacy group Public Citizen, said Mr. Trump’s decision to create teams of political appointees — formally known as regulatory reform task forces — should make it easier for the White House to overcome bureaucratic resistance to his rollback plans.

Trump voting panel tells states to hold off sending data while court weighs privacy impact

7/10/2017
The Washington Post : Trump voting panel tells states to hold off sending data while court weighs privacy impact by Spencer S. Hsu - Also Monday, the American Civil Liberties Union and the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law filed separate lawsuits asking the same judge, Kollar-Kotelly, a 1997 Clinton appointee, to find the voting panel in violation of government transparency laws.The public interest group Public Citizen also sued the Army to block any data-sharing from its website on privacy grounds.

3 Lawsuits Filed Against White House Panel on Voter Fraud

7/10/2017
The New York Times : 3 Lawsuits Filed Against White House Panel on Voter Fraud by Michael Wines - A third suit, by the advocacy group Public Citizen, argues that the commission is violating the federal Privacy Act by designating the Army to collect data on voters’ registrations and voting histories and other identifying data, including partial Social Security numbers and birthdates. The group said that law barred the federal government from collecting or using any “record describing how any individual exercises rights guaranteed by the First Amendment,” which covers voting and other forms of political expression.

ACLU Files Suit Against White House Election Fraud Commission

7/10/2017
NPR : ACLU Files Suit Against White House Election Fraud Commission by Scott Neuman - The ACLU's suit, filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, is similar to another one filed Monday by the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law. At least two other organizations, the Electronic Privacy Information Center and Public Citizen, are also suing the Trump administration over alleged violations of privacy resulting from the commission's efforts to collect voter data.

Neomi Rao, the Scholar Who Will Help Lead Trump’s Regulatory Overhaul

7/9/2017
The New York Times: Neomi Rao, the Scholar Who Will Help Lead Trump’s Regulatory Overhaul - "I don't think her background should lead anybody to expect her to stand up to Donald Trump, Steve Bannon and the 'deconstruction of the administrative state,'" said Amit Narang, a regulatory policy advocate with the liberal-leaning organization Public Citizen. "Her background makes me think she's going to fast-track all of that."

D.C. Council Bills Take Aim At Pay-To-Play

7/8/2017
The Washington Post: D.C. Council Bills Take Aim At Pay-To-Play by Peter Jamison - Craig Holman, government-affairs lobbyist at the nonprofit group Public Citizen, said he was aware of 15 states that regulate political donations by government contractors.

Calls to Bolster U.S. Ethics Agency Reach Crescendo After Director Quits

7/7/2017
Bloomberg: Calls to Bolster U.S. Ethics Agency Reach Crescendo After Director Quits by Ben Brody - Craig Holman, a lobbyist at Washington-based Public Citizen, said Shaub’s departure “places the integrity of the OGE in doubt,” and suggested that there may be enough political will in Congress to adopt reforms. “This would be the environment for it,” he said, because of ethics issues that have emerged early in Trump’s administration, “wrapped up in a pledge by Trump to ‘drain the swamp.”’

Attorneys General Sue DeVos Over Delay Of Rule To Protect Students From Predatory Colleges

7/7/2017
The Washington Post: Attorneys General Sue DeVos Over Delay Of Rule To Protect Students From Predatory Colleges by Danielle Douglas-Gabriel - In a separate but related case, Public Citizen and the Project on Predatory Student Lending also filed suit Thursday against DeVos for blocking the defense rule. The consumer groups are suing on behalf of former students of the for-profit New England Institute of Art in Brookline, Mass., who previously filed a motion to intervene in the California lawsuit to block the rule.

Trial Lawyers Want To Defend Fiduciary Rule In Court

7/7/2017
Bloomberg BNA: Trial Lawyers Want To Defend Fiduciary Rule In Court by Jacklyn Wille - Nonprofit law firm Public Citizen Inc. challenged the idea that the fiduciary rule infringes on speech in violation of the First Amendment. Some fiduciary rule critics, including the American Council of Life Insurers, have argued that the rule impermissibly restricts the speech of investment advisers by placing limits on the type of advice they can offer. Not so, Public Citizen said. The rule regulates professional conduct, not speech, and is akin to the regulation on medical advice given by veterinarians upheld by the Fifth Circuit in 2015.

New Details About Mercury’s Work For A Mysterious Foundation

7/7/2017
POLITICO: New Details About Mercury’s Work For A Mysterious Foundation by Theodoric Meyer - SHAUB’S DEPARTURE RAISES CONCERNS ABOUT ETHICS OFFICE: The resignation of Office of Government Ethics Director Walter Shaub on Thursday has set “off alarm bells among watchdog groups, who fear the integrity of the agency’s ethics work is now at risk,” The Hill’s Megan Wilson reports. “Several nonprofits — and e lead Democrat on the House Oversight Committee — issued statements Thursday expressing concern that there may not be enough pressure to follow ethics rules without a permanent director in place. … ‘His resignation places the integrity of the OGE in doubt.

18 States and D.C. Sue Betsy DeVos Over For-Profit College Loan Rules

7/6/2017
The HuffPost: 18 States and D.C. Sue Betsy DeVos Over For-Profit College Loan Rules by Lydia O'Connor - Two groups, Public Citizen and the Project on Predatory Student Lending, also filed a lawsuit over the rule on Thursday on behalf of Meaghan Bauer and Stephano Del Rose, two former students of the for-profit New England Institute of Art in Massachusetts

18 States Sue Betsy DeVos for Killing Student Loan Protection

7/6/2017
U.S. News & World Report: 18 States Sue Betsy DeVos for Killing Student Loan Protection by Lauren Camera - In a separate lawsuit also filed against the Education Department Thursday, the consumer rights advocacy group Public Citizen and the Project on Predatory Student Lending argue on behalf of two student borrowers that the delay of the Borrower Defense Rule is unlawful.

19 AGs Sue DeVos For Delaying For-Profit College Rules

7/6/2017
ABC News: 19 AGs Sue DeVos For Delaying For-Profit College Rules by Collin Binkley - "Secretary Betsy DeVos has effectively revoked students' rights under the rule while giving a pass to predatory schools that wield influence with this administration," said Julie Murray, an attorney for Public Citizen, a liberal think tank in Washington that's representing the students.

EPA's Pruitt Moves To Roll Back Over 30 Environmental Regulations In Record Time

7/3/2017
CBS News: EPA's Pruitt Moves To Roll Back Over 30 Environmental Regulations In Record Time by Emily Tillett - "It amounts to a corporate takeover of the agency, in its decision- and policy-making functions," Robert Weissman, the president of Public Citizen, told the paper.

Facebook Is Fighting A Gag Order Over Search Warrants For User Account Information

7/3/2017
BuzzFeed: Facebook Is Fighting A Gag Order Over Search Warrants For User Account Information by Zoe Tillman - “The Constitution can offer adequate protection only if the targets of seemingly overbroad warrants, such as those at issue here, know their rights are under threat,” lawyers for the American Civil Liberties Union and Public Citizen Litigation Group wrote in one of the briefs.

Shutdown Threat Risks Stalling Work, Pushing Out Staff

7/3/2017
Bloomberg BNA: Shutdown Threat Risks Stalling Work, Pushing Out Staff by Sam Pearson - Morrison, a co-founder of the Public Citizen Litigation Project, who is now an associate dean at George Washington University, said his former agency was doomed because “it didn’t have any strong supporters in Congress, it didn’t have any clout on its own and nobody cared enough to fight about it.”

Counseled By Industry, Not Staff, E.P.A. Chief Is Off To A Blazing Start

7/1/2017
The New York Times: Counseled By Industry, Not Staff, E.P.A. Chief Is Off To A Blazing Start by Coral Davenport - "It amounts to a corporate takeover of the agency, in its decision- and policymaking functions," said Robert Weissman, the president of Public Citizen, a government watchdog group.