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Philip Bump

Philip Bump is a writer at The Wire.
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The Capitol Hill Police Get Paid by Congress -- In Applause

October 4, 2013 The Capitol Hill Police have been on the job since the government shut down on midnight on Tuesday without any idea of when their next paycheck will come. In the aftermath of Thursday's shooting though, the Democratic and Republican lawmakers they protect joined together to compensate with something even better ...

Intel Chief 'Can't Guarantee' America Will Remain Safe During the Shutdown

October 2, 2013 During a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on Wednesday, Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa asked the Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, if the government shutdown was putting America at risk. Clapper's response was not reassuring. Grassley: Does America remain safe, even with a shutdown? Clapper: Um. [pauses] I have to ...

How the Shutdown Ends

October 1, 2013 How long the shutdown will last -- probably the first question on many Americans' minds this morning -- depends on Congress reaching agreement on a government-funding bill. In other words, the same roadblock that began the shutdown in the first place. But now that the shutdown is under way, a ...

The NSA Used to Spy on MLK — and the Senator Who Forced It to Reform

September 26, 2013 For those inclined to be sympathetic toward the public appeal made by NSA chief Keith Alexander on Wednesday — that the NSA stops terror attacks like the one in Nairobi — there's a declassified document that outlines the agency's unsympathetic past, which includes spying on politicians, reporters, and Martin Luther ...

Why Does Congress Need a Whole Seven Days to Solve Its Money Problems?

September 25, 2013 The ever-shrinking cycle of government funding measures appears to be about to hit a recent low. A National Review report on Wednesday afternoon indicates that House Republicans want a one-week extension of the existing funding bill. We say: Why so long? Instead of passing annual budgets, as it is supposed ...

U.N. Releases Report on Syrian Chemical Weapons Attack, But Doesn't Assign Blame

September 16, 2013 The United Nations' report on the alleged August 21 chemical weapons attack in a suburb of Damacus suggests that it was not just alleged. Calling the attack a "war crime," Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon noted that evidence of the use of sarin gas was "overwhelming and indisputable." By whom, however, ...

How to Keep NSA From Getting Between You and Your Googling

September 13, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow One of the documents leaked by Edward Snowden indicates that the NSA uses "man in the middle" attacks to hijack your interactions with Google servers. Here's how such attacks work, and how to protect your browsing. Tech website Techdirt appears to have been the first to notice the reference to ...

The Secret to Congress Getting Popular: Go on Vacation

September 12, 2013 Congressional approval ratings did something unexpected over the past month, according to a new poll from Gallup: They went up. And all Congress had to do to become more popular was go on vacation. Nearly a fifth of Americans now say that they approve of the job that Congress is ...

When It's at the Border, Your Data Is Fair Game — Even on Your Laptop

September 10, 2013 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Americans are protected from warrantless search in America — but not at the nation's borders. The imaginary line separating the United States from the rest of the world has become a critical demarcation for the privacy of the country's citizens, as new documents from the ACLU and the ongoing Snowden ...

What Does Obama Get From a Syria Compromise Besides Political Relief?

September 10, 2013 Things are falling into place for the Kerry/Putin Surprise Solution to U.S. Intervention in Syria. France will bring a proposal to the UN; Syria and Russia and the United States and China have endorsed it. Everyone is happy. Except that the actual collection of chemical weapons is enormously tricky. And ...