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Tags: trump | department of labor | obama | lawsuits | eugene scalia

Trump Administration Must End Obama's Bogus Lawsuits Against Big Tech

Trump Administration Must End Obama's Bogus Lawsuits Against Big Tech
U.S. Labor Secretary Eugene Scalia delivers remarks before his ceremonial swearing in with President Donald Trump in the Oval Office at the White House September 30, 2019, in Washington, D.C. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Jared Whitley By Friday, 06 December 2019 03:54 PM Current | Bio | Archive

The Bush Administration bent over backwards to transition gracefully to the Obama Administration.

President Bush wanted us to all be as respectful as possible to the incoming president and his staff, because — not only is he inarguably a gentleman and a statesman — the departing Clinton Administration wasn’t.

They left $15,000 of damage to government equipment and even ripped the W’s out of the keyboards.

Petty and pathetic.

Would that such vandalism were the only “present” the departing Obama Administration had left for President Trump.

Following Trump’s upset victory in late 2016, Obama’s cabal of partisan lawyers drew up a series of midnight regulations to sabotage the incoming administration: bogus last-minute lawsuits they knew would serve as political time bombs once Obama had left office. These politically motivated lawsuits must be withdrawn.

In the offending midnight regulations, the Obama Administration’s Department of Labor attacked tech companies Palantir, Google, then Oracle with (pardon the expression) trumped-up accusations of discrimination for some of their government contract work. In each suit, no actual evidence of discrimination was presented, merely out-of-context statistics. To any real court of law, mere statistical sampling would not qualify as evidence, but the DoL has notably lower standards.

(See also: Twain, Mark. “Lies, damn lies, and statistics.”)

Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) was designed to promote affirmative action among federal contractors, but — as is often the case with this type of camel’s nose in the tent policy — OFCCP has become a haven for far-left Obama holdovers to attack private enterprise. It’s not quite as bad as Obama ordering federal law enforcement to allegedly spy on the Trump campaign, but it’s still bad.

The OFCCP has long been criticized for abuses of power and unreasonable fishing expeditions. It has “become an agency that appears to focus more on garnering splashy headlines and securing high-dollar settlements than it does simply pursuing its admirable, if at times, unglamorous mission,” the Chamber of Commerce wrote in its report “Right Mission, Wrong Tactics.” The OFCCP is too antagonistic toward the federal contractors and ignores existing diversity efforts. This wastes taxpayer resources and risks alienating good companies from serving within the federal workspace.

Under the banner of “fighting discrimination,” the OFCCP has the unique power to disqualify federal government contractors, so they can force companies to comply with unreasonable requests. Given the threat of debarment, federal contractors — who walk a tightrope through the procurement process anyway — are reluctant to challenge OFCCP. In their report, the Chamber noted that several Chamber member companies are too scared to share their experiences with OFCCP, even anonymously, for fear of future retribution.

This hardly creates an environment conducive to public-private partnership.

Silicon Valley has hardly proven itself to be a friend to conservative America — despite the fact that it owes its existence to conservatism. With shadow-bans on Twitter, canceling YouTube channels that don’t conform to the narrative, and manipulating search results, Big Tech has become gallingly partisan. There is no reason for a Republican administration to want to help an industry that has become so hostile toward it, except for the fact that it’s the right thing to do. Oracle, Palantir, and Google don’t deserve to be harassed by frivolous, Obama-era lawsuits. And sparing them from this harassment might serve to remind Big Tech which party wants the country to remain business friendly and which party does not.

The President’s first Labor Secretary, Alex Acosta, did nothing to curtail these bogus lawsuits. He wanted to be a federal judge and so did nothing to upset the status quo in Washington, which is exactly why we hired Trump in the first place. With Labor under the new leadership from Eugene Scalia, we expect the department to follow Trump’s lead. Getting rid of Obama’s last-minute lawsuits would be a start.

And if Scalia does the right thing on this, I’ll send him the W off my keyboard to say thanks.

Jared Whitley is a long-time politico who has worked in the U.S. Congress, White House, and defense industry. He is an award-winning writer, having won best blogger in the state from the Utah Society of Professional Journalists (2018) and best columnist from Best of the West (2016). He earned his MBA from Hult International Business School in Dubai. To read more of his reports — Click Here Now.

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The Bush Administration bent over backwards to transition gracefully to the Obama Administration.
trump, department of labor, obama, lawsuits, eugene scalia
Friday, 06 December 2019 03:54 PM
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