In a new round of interviews, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder called for lowering the bar prosecutors must meet to file civil rights abuse charges. The shift would have made it easier for prosecutors to file charges in the deaths of Michael Brown and Trayvon Martin. “I think some serious consideration needs to be given to the standard of proof that has to be met before federal involvement is appropriate, and that’s something I am going to be talking about,” Holder told Politico.
The new round of interviews cover a range of subjects—immigration reform, LGBT rights, and race. The interviews also come as Holder prepares to leave the Obama administration and should be viewed as a bit of legacy building.
In recent weeks, Holder has indicated the Justice Department will soon release the findings of its investigation into the operations of the Ferguson, Missouri, police department. The Justice Department is reportedly considering filing suit against the Ferguson Police Department, triggered by the fatal police shooting of Brown, an unarmed black teenager, last summer. Earlier in February, Holder said a moratorium on the death penalty should be imposed. The interviews also come as the White House enters a broader conversation on how to reform the criminal justice system.
Holder is expected to deliver a set of policy proposals to Congress in the coming weeks.
President Obama’s nominee for attorney general, Loretta E. Lynch, the U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of New York, is awaiting confirmation. The U.S. Senate is expected to vote on her nomination in the coming weeks.
In other news…
Climate Change: A majority of Americans believe that fighting climate change is a moral duty, according to a new Reuters/IPSOS poll. (via Reuters)
Food: The food industry is losing its battle over how to market genetically modified foods. (via Al Jazeera America)
USDA: Mother Jones delivers a sharp look at gaps in the USDA’s meat inspection process.
Regulated Nets: On Thursday, the Federal Communications Commission voted to regulate the Internet like a utility. If you’re wondering what net neutrality means, read this helpful guide from Vox. (via the Los Angeles Times)