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Rutledge Statement on the Passing of Newport Police Officer Lt. Patrick Weatherford

Rutledge Statement on the Passing of Newport Police Officer Lt. Patrick Weatherford

Mon, Jun 12, 2017

LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge today issued a statement in response to the line of duty shooting death of Newport Police Officer Lt. Patrick Weatherford.

“Today marks the end of watch for Lt. Patrick Weatherford, the Jackson County Outstanding Law Enforcement Officer of the Year in 2016,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “Lt. Weatherford was known for routinely preventing incidents and altercations from escalating into crisis, and I have no doubt that Lt. Weatherford began his watch today with the same mission to protect and serve the community he loved so much. His young family and his fellow officers of the Newport Police Department are all grieving, and I pray that God will bring them strength and peace in the days ahead. May we all be reminded of the words found in John 15:13, ‘that greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.’”

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Rutledge Welcomes Summer Session I Law Clerks

Rutledge Welcomes Summer Session I Law Clerks

Mon, Jun 12, 2017

Says ‘students are exposed to the fulfilling experience of service in the public sector’

LITTLE ROCK Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge welcomed a new class of law clerks for the first summer session to the Attorney General’s office. These law students work in various departments assisting with legal research, drafting memos and legal documents and accompanying lawyers at trials, client meetings and hearings.

“The office’s law clerks work closely with some of Arkansas’s top attorneys and are a valuable asset to the State,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “The law clerk program is a great service-learning opportunity for students, and the students are exposed to the fulfilling experience of service in the public sector.”

Michael Cathey, a graduate from the University of Arkansas School of Law, is clerking in the State Agencies Department. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree in history from Hendrix College in 2013. Cathey is from Little Rock and graduated from Little Rock Central High School in 2009. He will be entering the United States Marine Corps to serve as a Judge Advocate in the fall.

Alexander Chak, a third-year student at the University of Arkansas School of Law, is clerking in the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit. He graduated from the University of California, Irvine in 2013 with a double major in criminology, law and society and psychology and social behavior. Chak is from Queens, New York, and graduated from Northwood High School in Irvine, California, in 2008.

Bryan Foster, a third-year student at the University of Arkansas School of Law, is clerking in the Criminal Department. He graduated from Northern Arizona University in 2015 with a degree in finance. Foster is from Tucson, Arizona, and graduated from Tanque Verde High School in Tanque Verde, Arizona, in 2011.

Matt Light, a third-year student at the University of Arkansas School of Law, is clerking in the Civil Department. He graduated from the University of Arkansas with a degree in accounting in 2014. Light is from Shreveport, Louisiana, and graduated from Caddo Magnet High School in Shreveport, Louisiana, in 2010.

Wes Manus, a second-year student at the University of Arkansas Little Rock William H. Bowen School of Law, is clerking in the Public Protection Department. He is also pursuing a Master of Public Service degree from the Clinton School of Public Service. He graduated from the University of Arkansas with a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science in 2006 and earned a Master of Arts degree in international relations from the University of Oklahoma in 2011. Manus is from Little Rock and graduated from Hall High School. He previously served as an intelligence officer in the United States Air Force.

Zach Trail, a third-year student at the University of Arkansas School of Law, is clerking in the Public Protection Department. He graduated from the University of Arkansas in 2015 with a major in agriculture business. Trail is from Wynne and graduated from Wynne High School in 2011.

Jake Windley, a second-year student at the University of Arkansas Little Rock William H. Bowen School of Law, is clerking in the Public Protection Department. He graduated from Harding University in 2015 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science and a bachelor of science in chemistry. Windley is from Searcy and graduated from Searcy High School in 2011.

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Rutledge Calls Bi-Partisan Attorneys General Delegation Trip to Israel a ‘Success’

Rutledge Calls Bi-Partisan Attorneys General Delegation Trip to Israel a ‘Success’

Fri, Jun 9, 2017

Says, ‘I was humbled to represent the State of Arkansas’

LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge concluded the month of May with a weeklong attorneys general delegation trip to Israel to build state-level relations with legal and security officials.

“I was honored to discuss important issues, such as human trafficking, cybersecurity and combatting terrorism, with top Israeli officials,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “This trip was an enormous success, and I was humbled to represent the State of Arkansas in the Holy Land as we work to build strong trans-national partnerships with law enforcement, military and justice officials.”

The bi-partisan delegation of seven attorneys general from across the country met with Ayelet Shaked, the Israeli Minister of Justice, to discuss trans-national security issues, including cybersecurity and human trafficking. Rutledge also traveled to the Golan Heights where the delegation observed and was briefed on fighting in the Syrian Civil War just across the border and visited injured Syrians receiving treatment by Israeli medical staff at the Galilee Medical Center.

Rutledge also met with Israel’s Deputy Attorney General, officials at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Prime Minister’s office, legal advisers to the Israeli Defense Force, members of the Knesset and an Israeli Arab journalist. Discussions included combating terrorism, as well as law enforcement and other public safety challenges.

The delegation was led by the President-elect of the National Association of Attorneys General Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt. The America-Israel Friendship League sponsored the delegation and no taxpayer funds were used.

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Rutledge Calls on President to Reform Regulatory Process

Rutledge Calls on President to Reform Regulatory Process

Wed, Jun 7, 2017

In a letter, she writes, ‘For too long, both Republican and Democratic Presidents have abused the system’

LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge today joined a 16-state coalition, calling on President Donald Trump to lead a regulatory reform effort that restores the balance of power between the states and the federal government and encourages common sense polices based on compromise and moderation.

“As I travel Arkansas, I hear loud and clear from Arkansans that they are burdened by the unlawful regulations put in place by bureaucrats in Washington, D.C.,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “While my colleagues and I have challenged these rules and regulations, what is truly needed is bold reform of the regulatory process so that these lawsuits are the exception – not the norm. Individuals and businesses are not protected under the current structure and that must change.”

The attorneys general propose that Congress pass legislation clarifying that federal agencies may not enforce rules, interpretations, guidance documents, bulletins, circulars, or any other administrative statement or action of any type or form in federal court. Further, to restore the role of the judiciary, agencies should be required to bring enforcement actions in Article III courts whenever they seek to impose a legal or financial obligation on an individual or business; whereas, current law allows federal agencies to bring enforcement actions against private individuals in front of in-house, administrative law judges.

Rutledge and her colleagues write, “In sum, the existing regulatory approach presents an enormous problem for private individuals, businesses, and State Attorneys General, irrespective of political affiliation. When federal agencies have virtually full control over the law, power is concentrated at the federal level. And the party that controls the executive effectively runs the nation — from what’s taught in the nation’s schools to the way our businesses are managed.”

Led by the State of Texas, Rutledge is joined on the letter by attorneys general from Alabama, Arizona, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, West Virginia and Wisconsin.

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Rutledge Statement on EPA’s Decision to Delay Ozone Rule Implementation

Rutledge Statement on EPA’s Decision to Delay Ozone Rule Implementation

Wed, Jun 7, 2017

LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge today released a statement after the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that it would give states more time to comply with the National Ambient Air Quality Standards, an ozone regulation issued in 2015. Administrator Scott Pruitt today sent a letter to governors informing them that the EPA is extending the deadline for promulgating initial area designations by one year.

“Administrator Pruitt has made the right decision by extending this initial deadline for the states,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “Arkansans take great pride in our clean air and the State has continually improved its air quality, but the burdensome and costly ozone regulation makes compliance nearly impossible while placing great financial strain on small, rural communities.”

The National Ambient Air Quality Standards for ground-level ozone is an outdoor air regulation under the Clean Air Act. As part of the process to determine what areas of the country are able to meet the current air quality standards, states are submitting their proposals for area designations. Areas designated as being in “nonattainment” of the standard face serious consequences, including: increased regulatory burdens, stiff federal penalties, lost highway dollars, restrictions on infrastructure investment and increased costs to businesses.

Rutledge challenged the new ozone regulation in a lawsuit filed in October of 2015, along with Arizona, North Dakota, Oklahoma and the New Mexico Environmental Department.

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Rutledge Urges U.S. Supreme Court to Uphold Constitutionality of POTUS Authority to Temporarily Suspend Entry of Non-Citizens

Rutledge Urges U.S. Supreme Court to Uphold Constitutionality of POTUS Authority to Temporarily Suspend Entry of Non-Citizens

Tue, Jun 6, 2017

Files amicus brief asking Court to hear case and reverse 4th Circuit’s decision enjoining executive order

LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge has filed an amicus brief

with the U.S. Supreme Court, urging the justices to grant a stay and ultimately reverse the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals ruling enjoining the President’s executive order.

“I am urging the U.S. Supreme Court to reverse the lower court’s injunction and clear the way for the President to exercise his legal authority to temporarily suspend the entry of non-citizens into this country to keep Americans safe,” said Attorney General Rutledge.

Congress has granted the President broad authority under 8 U.S. Code § 1182, which says, “whenever the President finds that the entry of any aliens or of any class of aliens into the United States would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, he may by proclamation, and for such period as he shall deem necessary, suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens as immigrants or nonimmigrants, or impose on the entry of aliens any restrictions he may deem to be appropriate.”

Rutledge and her colleagues point out in the brief that the states do not have the authority to temporarily suspend entry, instead relying on the executive branch of the federal government to keep citizens safe. In urging the Court to grant the petition and stay of application, it is noted that the lower court’s injunction “is contrary to law, and it denies the federal government – under statutory regime crafted by the representatives from the States in Congress – the latitude necessary to make national-security, foreign-affairs and immigration policy judgments inherent in this country’s nature as a sovereign.”

Rutledge joined the brief, which was led by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, along with attorneys general from Alabama, Arizona, Florida, Kansas, Louisiana, Montana, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee and West Virginia, as well as the Governor of Mississippi.

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