National Journal Online

Supreme Court Strikes Down California Law

The Supreme Court on Monday struck down California’s law forbidding people under 18 to buy video games, saying it violates First Amendment rights and is "unprecedented and mistaken."

The 7-2 opinion, written by Justice Antonin Scalia, says that just as children can read grisly fairy tales, they can buy and play violent video games. Justices Clarence Thomas and Stephen Breyer dissented.

Posted: Monday, June 27, 2011 - 11:40am

Supreme Court Strikes Another Blow at Campaign Finance Regulation

A closely divided Supreme Court on Monday struck down an Arizona law that allows the state to level the financial playing field for candidates running against wealthy opponents, a decision that advocates of tighter campaign finance regulation describe as a blow to efforts to limit the influence of money on politics.

Posted: Monday, June 27, 2011 - 11:40am

US Supreme Court Rules Against California Video law

The U.S. Supreme Court has struck down California’s law forbidding people under 18 to buy video games, saying it violates First Amendment rights.

The 2005 law prohibits those under 18 from buying or renting games that depict acts such as the "needless mutilation of the victim's body."

Posted: Monday, June 27, 2011 - 10:40am

Christie Says Obama 'Failing' But Could Learn From His Example

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) says President Obama could learn some things from his recent sit-downs with state Democrats to craft a workable bipartisan deficit-reduction bill, which Christie is expected to sign into law Tuesday.

Posted: Monday, June 27, 2011 - 10:40am

Bachmann Won't Flake Out on Running for President

Update: Michele Bachmann announced she's running for president in Iowa Monday, insisting that her campaign is a serious one: "Now I seek the presidency--not for vanity, but because America is at a crucial moment." She presented herself as someone who could unite the different factions of the Republican Party: "We can win in 2012 and we will. Our voice has been growing louder and stronger.

Posted: Monday, June 27, 2011 - 10:40am

Pawlenty: 'It's Easy to Take on Mitt Romney'

Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty is still trying to walk back a walk-back.

Pundits saw weakness when Pawlenty refused to go on the attack in the GOP debate two weeks ago after he was asked to discuss rival Mitt Romney’s health care plan. Pawlenty had earlier compared the plan to President Obama’s controversial health care overhaul -- coining the term “Obamneycare” -- but looked uncomfortable and wouldn’t repeat the phrase during the debate.

Posted: Monday, June 27, 2011 - 9:40am

Manchin: U.S. 'Staying Well Beyond Our Mission' in Afghanistan

Though his cries for an accelerated troop withdrawal from Afghanistan have lately been among the loudest on Capitol Hill, Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., said Monday he wasn’t always against U.S. involvement in the country.

Posted: Monday, June 27, 2011 - 9:40am

Let's Start With Charter Schools

"This country is in the midst of the most dynamic education-reform atmosphere I've seen in my tenure in Congress," was the observation of House Education and the Workforce Committee ranking member George Miller, D-Calif., when the panel approved new legislation last week to encourage more development of high-quality charter schools. "It will be a tremendous disservice if we don't take the opportunity before us to fix the federal system that supports our states, districts, and our schools," he said.

Posted: Monday, June 27, 2011 - 9:40am

After 55 Years, Where Are We on Highways?

June 29 marks the 55th anniversary of President Eisenhower's signing of the Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956, popularly known as the National Interstate and Defense Highways Act. The statute created the Highway Trust Fund, which was designed to pay for 90 percent of highway-construction costs. States were required to pay the remaining 10 percent of the costs. Eisenhower considered the project to be one of his most important accomplishments. "More than any single action by the government since the end of the war, this one would change the face of America....

Posted: Monday, June 27, 2011 - 9:40am

Administration Deploying 'Mystery Shoppers' to Assess Primary Care Physicians

The administration is planning to conduct a secret nationwide survey of primary care doctors in order to assess the availability of those doctors to patients as well as whether they are more inclined to accept patients with private insurance, which has higher reimbursement rates, The New York Times reports.

Posted: Monday, June 27, 2011 - 9:40am