Citizens United and Its Impact on Campaign Financing: A Brief Overview

Current Events, Exploring HeinOnline
Shannon Furtak

Money and politics have strolled hand-in-hand since the founding of the United States, when wealthy, well-connected candidates financed their own political campaigns and were essentially the only people who ran for office. In fact, George Washington spent about $8,000 in today’s currency on alcohol to “treat” voters on election day.

Andrew Jackson was the first presidential candidate who didn’t come from a wealthy background. He ran for office for the second time in 1828 and became the first organized campaigner.  While he didn’t seek financial support, he was an early practitioner of rewarding political loyalists with the only thing some find more valuable than money: power…

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Deadly Shootings and Gun Laws

Current Events, Searching
Lauren Mattiuzzo

In the first seven weeks of 2018, there have been several school shootings in the United States. The latest occurred on Valentine’s Day in Parkland, Florida, where seventeen people were killed. With the latest school shootings, and other mass shootings, there has been on ongoing debate circling gun laws. Let’s take a look at what has been happening and what laws are currently in place.

Timeline of Deadly Shootings

Looking back at the past ten years, there have been seven particularly deadly shootings. Two of the five deadliest shootings took place within a month of each other in late 2017…

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Bitcoin Doesn’t Grow on Trees

Current Events, Searching
Lauren Mattiuzzo

Although bitcoin was invented in 2009 and picked up speed in 2015, its biggest growth spurt occurred in 2017, and its popularity continues to rise. Recently, bitcoin prices have dipped due to a warning from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. However, the prices have gradually increased again. So what exactly is bitcoin and how is it used?

The Ins and Outs of Bitcoin

In 2009, an unknown person using the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto created bitcoin, a cryptocurrency and worldwide payment system. Cryptocurrencies are considered digital currencies. No central authority or government oversees this computer network…

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Anti-Vaccination Movement and the Flu

Current Events, Searching
Lauren Mattiuzzo

It is officially flu season. The dominant strain this season is the H3N2 strain, known to cause more hospitalizations and deaths than other strains. Although the flu shot’s effectiveness cannot yet be calculated, experts are expecting it to be about 30% effective. The severity of this year’s flu has contributed to the ongoing vaccination debate.

Facts about the Flu

Influenza (“the flu”) is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), every state in the U.S…

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The Flag, the National Anthem, and the First Amendment

Current Events, Exploring HeinOnline, U.S. Code
Lauren Mattiuzzo

In 2016, then-49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick began kneeling during the national anthem to protest racial injustice, particularly the killing of black Americans by police. During a campaign-style rally in Alabama this past September, President Trump denounced the kneeling protests and proclaimed that any players who refused to stand during the anthem should be fired. After Trump’s comments, hundreds of players joined the protest and the NFL promoted the message that it was unified. Several owners released statements criticizing the president’s comments and some locked arms with their players during the anthem. While some people support the protests, others feel it is disrespectful to the flag and the anthem…

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Marriage Equality and Religious Freedom

Case Law, Current Events, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases
Lauren Mattiuzzo

Five years ago, two gay men were turned away by the Christian owner of a bakery in Lakewood, Colorado because of his religious beliefs. The case has been in court ever since and will be heard by the Supreme Court in its new term, which began on October 2nd. This controversial case will examine issues of both equal rights and religious liberty.

Facts of the Case

In 2012, Charlie Craig and David Mullins planned to legally wed in Massachusetts, because their residing state of Colorado did not recognize same-sex marriage…

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Wrongful Convictions and Innocence Projects

Current Events, Exploring HeinOnline, Searching
Lauren Mattiuzzo

The Innocence Project celebrated its 25th anniversary earlier this month. The number of exonerations in the United States has increased each year for the past three years, and recently hit a record high. There are more than three exonerations on average per week, which is double the 2011 rate. The main causes of wrongful convictions include forensic misconduct, eyewitness misidentification, and inadequate legal defense. HeinOnline is proud to support various innocence projects around the United States.

The Innocence Project

The Innocence Project was founded in 1992 by Barry Scheck and Peter Neufeld…

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Researching Natural Disasters in HeinOnline

Current Events, Exploring HeinOnline, Searching
Lauren Mattiuzzo

Natural disasters can devastate people and businesses. In the past month, news stations have broadcasted the destructive effect that Hurricane Harvey, Irma, and Maria have had on the southeast portion of the United States, Puerto Rico, and the Caribbean. Congressional Service Reports provide insight on and reports discussing the laws related to natural disasters and what effect these hurricanes can have on Congress. HeinOnline contains a multitude of documents pertaining to natural disasters.

Search Across All Databases

To begin, conduct a search throughout all the databases in HeinOnline…

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North Korea and the Nuclear Crisis

Current Events, Searching
Lauren Mattiuzzo

North Korea recently made threats about a possible nuclear war, claiming that they have successfully built an intercontinental ballistic missile. In response to this announcement, Donald Trump has warned Kim Jong Un that the United States military is ready to retaliate if needed. Although media statements from North Korea revealed Kim Jong Un’s plan to fire missiles 25 miles off of Guam—a harbor to two U.S. military bases—he soon retracted his statement. While this is considered current news, history proves this conflict is nothing new.

History of North Korea and Nuclear Weapons

  • In 1985…

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Serial Killers, Book Deals, and Legal Research

Current Events, Searching
Shannon Furtak

This month marks the 40th anniversary of the arrest of serial killer David Berkowitz, more famously known as “Son of Sam” or the “.44 caliber killer.” In addition to wreaking havoc in New York City by killing six people and wounding seven others, Berkowitz’s notoriety led to the creation of and subsequent controversy surrounding “Son of Sam laws.” Research these laws, related constitutional issues, and Supreme Court cases on this killer topic in HeinOnline.

Berkowitz’s Crimes and Capture

  • On July 29, 1976 Berkowitz shot two teenage women: Donna Lauria and Jody Valenti…

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