Judge: Prosecutors cannot enforce Michigan’s abortion ban:
On Friday, a Michigan judge blocked county prosecutors from enforcing the state’s 1931 abortion ban. Oakland County Judge Jacob Cunningham came to this decision after two days of testimony from abortion providers and the state’s chief medical officer. During this ruling he says he found these witnesses to be “extremely credible” while stating those provided by the defense were “unhelpful and biased”. The 1931 law, which bans abortion in all cases excepting those where the mother’s life is endangered, was retroactively blocked from going to effect by a preliminary injunction. Prior to the latest court ruling, the State Court of Appeals had ruled that county prosecutors were not covered by this injunction, thus allowing them to enforce the 1931 law as they saw fit. David Kallman, an attorney for two Republican county prosecutors working to appeal the case, has stated his opposition to the recent ruling as being because, “the judge ignored all of the clear legal errors and problems in this case…simply because the issue is abortion.” His side believes that laws should not be changed through injunctions and court decisions while their opposition believe that allowing the ban to be enforced would only cause confusion. The issue of abortion in the state is expected to be decided by a ballot seeking to enshrine its protection in Michigan’s constitution. The status of abortion come November will likely have a deciding impact on this battleground state’s general election.
Judge may seek to unseal portions of Mar-a-Lago affidavit, despite DOJ objections:
Armed Secret Service agents stand outside an entrance to former President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate, late Monday, Aug. 8, 2022, in Palm Beach, Fla. Terry Renna/AP
Last week, a warrant was issued allowing federal agents to search former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate. The lack of transparency concerning what was in the affidavit used as the basis for the warrant has led a Florida magistrate judge to say on Thursday that he may push to unseal portions of it despite objections by the US Justice Department. While the Justice Department has recognized the heightened public interest of the case, they have pushed back by saying that keeping it sealed holds greater interest for the public as the investigation is still in its early stages and revealing information now could endanger potential witnesses. Even after hearing the government’s arguments Judge Bruce Reinhart believes that there are at least portions of it that can be left unsealed. In light of this disagreement, he has given the DOJ until next Thursday to file its redactions. There are also a number of media organizations calling for the affidavit’s release in lieu of the historic significance of law enforcement searching a former president’s home. The media differs from Judge Reinhart in that they call for the release of the full affidavit as any redactions would render the text “devoid of meaningful content." While former President Trump has demanded that the affidavit be released and seized documents be returned to him, he has yet to take any legal action in response to the search.
Crisis looms without big cuts to over-tapped Colorado River:
The Colorado River flows at Horseshoe Bend in the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area on June 8, 2022, in Page, Ariz. Las Vegas and Phoenix may be forced to ration water or restrict growth. (AP Photo/Brittany Peterson, File)
For years the seven states which depend on water from the Colorado River have taken more water from it than can be replenished by nature. Despite the severity of this, the states missed a deadline this week to propose the major cuts in water usage which the federal government insists are necessary. The federal government has failed to impose restrictions on the states’ water usage as such intervention will likely lead to lengthy court cases and further delay action. The river, stretching from the Rocky Mountains to the deserts in the Southwest, provides water for 40 million people and sustains a $15 billion agriculture industry. Unfortunately agreements on water usage, dating back over a century, have been based on faulty assumptions overestimating the amount of water available. Lake Powell and Lake Mead, the two largest reservoirs that hold Colorado River water, have fallen to dangerously low levels faster than anyone expected. This threatens the supply of water to cities as well as the production of hydro-electric power. Despite failing to take any action when the Bureau of Reclamation said 15% to 30% cuts to their water use were necessary, officials continue to reassure people that the system will not fail and that a solution will soon be reached. Some areas have already implemented strict measures to conserve water such as limiting lawn watering and paying farmers not to plant fields, even banning new water hookups. The climate legislation President Joe Biden signed on Tuesday provides $4 billion to help Colorado River users to cut back on their consumption though it remains unclear how this is meant to work.
Judge: Prosecutors cannot enforce Michigan's abortion ban | AP News
Judge may seek to unseal portions of Mar-a-Lago affidavit, despite DOJ objections - ABC News
Crisis looms without big cuts to over-tapped Colorado River - AP News