Professors Gaylord, Levine and Rich offer legal insight for news media
Elon Law Professors Scott Gaylord, David Levine and Michael Rich provided commentary and analysis for Yes! Weekly, Slate and the News and Observer, respectively, on the subjects of super PACs, voting machines and criminal informants.
Professor Gaylord’s perspective on super PAC funded advertising in judicial elections is featured extensively in the October 25 News & Observer article, “Super PAC funds pour into Newby’s campaign for N.C. Supreme Court.”
In the article Gaylord says increased exposure of judicial elections to the public, through heightened spending on campaigns, can encourage greater public debate.
“One of the concerns with judicial elections is people don’t know who is running,” Gaylord said. “This helps counter that, and opens the possibility for other people to weigh in as well.”
Professor Levine wrote an article for Slate, the online daily magazine, titled, “Can We Trust Voting Machines? Trade-secret law makes it impossible to independently verify that the devices are working properly.”
In the article, published October 24, Levine writes that a lack of access to the technology used to operate electronic voting machines threatens public confidence in the electoral process.
“The excessive protection of the trade secrets that allow the machines to accurately (or, problematically, inaccurately) tabulate votes means that business interests are being prioritized over citizens’ interests,” Levine wrote.
Professor Rich offers significant commentary about criminal informants for an October 24 Yes! Weekly article titled, “The Science of Snitching.”
The article quotes from Rich’s recent American University Law Review article, detailing concerns with current aspects of the criminal informant role in law enforcement.
“Active criminal informants are vulnerable to substantial physical, social, and moral harm, yet society does little to ensure their safety,” Rich said. “Moreover, informant recruitment is inherently coercive, and there are no safeguards to ensure that informants agree voluntarily to cooperate.”