Recommendations to Strengthen GAO’s Science, Technology Assessment, and Analytics Program

April 15, 2021 | Zach Graves

This post was co-authored by Zach Graves and Dan Lips. The FY2022 appropriations process is underway. While it represents a small fraction of overall spending, one of the most important challenges on Congress’s agenda is meeting the funding needs for the Legislative Branch, and providing resources for key support agencies like the Government Accountability Office
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How Can Congress Improve GAO’s Performance?

April 12, 2021 | Dan Lips

An Interview with Deloitte Analysts William Eggers and Steve Berman             The nonpartisan Government Accountability Office issues more than a thousand recommendations to Congress and executive agencies each year to improve operations and increase fiscal efficiency. According to the Comptroller General’s annual estimates, the Congressional watchdog agency routinely achieves a return-on-investment of more than $100
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Modernizing Oversight of Federal Spending Could Save Taxpayers Billions

March 19, 2021 | Dan Lips

Days before Congress passed the $1.9 trillion emergency spending package, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office issued a grim snapshot of the nation’s fiscal condition. CBO warned that the “growing debt burden could increase the risk of a fiscal crisis and higher inflation as well as undermine confidence in the U.S. dollar, making it more costly to finance public and private
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The Promise and Perils of Interoperability

March 4, 2021 | Zach Graves

Majorities of both Republicans and Democrats now support increased regulation of the tech industry. Responding to this pressure, policymakers on both sides of the aisle have become increasingly critical of big tech, and are looking to advance new legislation. However, because their underlying grievances are different—with the right focusing on anti-conservative bias, and the left
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Lincoln Network’s 2020 funding breakdown

February 19, 2021 | Garrett Johnson

Lincoln Network is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that was founded in 2014 with a mission to help bridge the gap between Silicon Valley and DC from a pro-market, pro-innovation perspective. Lincoln’s founders recognized that the government needs, and the people it serves deserve, new ideas and technologies to increase efficiency, effectiveness, and responsiveness. We founded
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Red Lines, Finish Lines, and the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics

February 17, 2021 | Jordan McGillis

Twelve months from now, two thousand athletes representing almost 100 countries are slated to march under their national flags into Beijing National Stadium to mark the opening of the 2022 Winter Olympics. Beijing National Stadium—the Bird’s Nest—was the focal point of the 2008 Summer Games and hosted that year’s opening ceremony, an awe-inducing tribute to
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5G Needs Better Markets, Not More Buildout Requirements

February 16, 2021 | Joe Kane

Behind all those Super Bowl commercials about “5G” has been a years-long push to get the wireless frequencies needed for the next generation of wireless service ready for widespread use. One of the biggest recent steps in that direction is the Federal Communications Commission’s auction of licenses to operate in the lower portion of the
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Fifteen Senators Urge Biden Administration to Invest in Semiconductor Manufacturing

February 4, 2021 | Dan Lips

On Tuesday, Ohio Senators Rob Portman and Sherrod Brown led thirteen of their colleagues in sending a bipartisan letter to National Economic Council Director Brian Deese. The lawmakers urged the Biden administration to help auto manufacturers address the current semiconductor shortage which has forced companies to curb production despite growing demand.  The Senators urged the
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Expert Advice for the Biden Administration’s Approach to Semiconductor Policy

January 28, 2021 | Alexiaa Jordan

Over the past four years, the semiconductor industry has focused on U.S. trade policy with China. Congress and the Trump Administration strengthened federal laws to restrict foreign investment, control technology transfer, and established new federal research incentives. This pattern looks to be continuing as President Biden’s nominee to lead the Department of Commerce committed to
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The Biden Administration Must Answer China’s Semiconductor Challenge

January 26, 2021 | Dan Lips

President Biden’s nominee for Commerce Secretary testified to Congress today that the new administration will be firm in responding to China’s unfair trade practices. Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo told the Senate said the administration will “take aggressive trade enforcement actions to combat unfair trade practices from China and other nations that undercut American manufacturing.”
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Rethinking the Future of US Cybersecurity After the Latest Data Breach

December 16, 2020 | Dan Lips

5 Questions National Policymakers Should Be Asking  This week, IT-firm SolarWinds announced that it had likely suffered “a highly sophisticated, targeted and manual supply chain attack by an outside nation state,” which put the information systems of 18,000 of its customers, including federal agencies, at risk. The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency at DHS issued
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FCC Moving to Update Rules for Marketing and Importation Equipment Is Good for 5G and IoT

December 8, 2020 | Joel Thayer

The United States’ success in the race to 5G is critical, but enabling the Internet of things (IoT) ecosystem is equally important. This Federal Communications Commission (FCC or Commission) in particular has made considerable efforts to expedite the deployment of 5G networks, either through reducing  barriers to building infrastructure or through opening up key spectrum
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Why Congress Should Fully Fund Its Watchdog

November 10, 2020 | Dan Lips

An extra $76 million in funding for GAO could yield $7 billion in savings based on recent performance The lame-duck session is underway. As the clock winds down on the 116th Congress, lawmakers have a busy agenda for its final weeks–from considering a new emergency spending bill to NDAA and a December 11th deadline to
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Listen to the Intelligence Community’s Warnings Ahead of the Election

November 2, 2020 | Dan Lips

Voting is one the most important civic responsibilities in the United States. In 2020, being a responsible voter also involves understanding the rules of the election, the threat foreign interference, and reporting potential wrongdoing to the appropriate authorities if necessary. FBI Director Christopher Wray and Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe recently held a press
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Ant Goes Marching

October 26, 2020 | Jordan McGillis

Ant Group, the company behind China’s online payment revolution, intends to list on both the Hong Kong and Shanghai stock exchanges by the end of this month. At $35-$40 billion, it would be the biggest IPO ever. Significant investment interest in Ant Group has bubbled up in the West, including from American firms like Fidelity
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The DoD’s Plan to Nationalize 5G and Its Implications

October 20, 2020 | Joel Thayer

Based off of its recent Request For Information (RFI), the United States’ Department of Defense (DoD) intends to balkanize the internet by nationalizing the U.S.’s 5G networks. Make no mistake, the DoD’s plan in releasing this RFI is nothing short of an attempt to capture the 5G market. It makes clear that the DoD seeks
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The Chinese App We Should Really Be Talking About

August 31, 2020 | Jordan McGillis

While TikTok is taking up much oxygen in our media ecosystem, another Chinese app provides a more interesting point of departure from which to discuss Sino-American relations. That app is Xuexi Qiangguo. “Study Xi, Strong Nation” Xuexi Qiangguo, or “Study Xi, Strong Nation” is an app produced by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) to instruct
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It’s Time for Change at the Department of Homeland Security

August 10, 2020 | Dan Lips

Congress must refocus DHS’s missions and address dysfunctional oversight   The following article was co-authored by Keith Ashdown and Dan Lips. The Trump Administration’s decision to send hundreds of federal law enforcement officers to Portland to protect federal buildings and confront (and beat up) protesters and rioters highlights longstanding problems with the Department of Homeland
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Solutions for Fighting Voting Fraud

August 7, 2020 | Sean Roberts

Election oversight is critical bulwark protecting the republic from election crimes Publicly elected officers wield power over decision making. The temptation to cheat, lie, and steal to get into public office is too great for some. Strong election oversight is a requirement for a society governed by the rule of law.  We have many historical
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The Realignment X Lincoln Network

July 29, 2020 | Marshall Kosloff

For the past year, Saagar Enjeti, co-host of The Hill‘s Rising with Krystal and Saagar, and I have co-hosted The Realignment podcast. Over 40 plus episodes, we’ve interviewed Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Senators Josh Hawley and Tom Cotton, Representative Mike Gallagher, Krystal Ball, Bhaskar Sunkara, J.D. Vance, Megan McArdle, and Jane Coaston, among others.
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The Federalist’s Missed Google Opportunity

July 27, 2020 | Marshall Kosloff

Last month, NBC News and the U.K.-based Center for Countering Digital Hate alleged that Google had formally decided to demonetize the conservative digital publication The Federalist over controversial articles about Black Lives Matter. It quickly emerged that NBC‘s initial reporting was inaccurate, with Google subsequently announcing it had not yet prevented The Federalist from using
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Elections Assistance Commission Circulates CDC Recommendations for In-Person Voting

July 21, 2020 | Alexiaa Jordan

Last month, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued safety guidance for election locations, staffers, and voters. Their standard COVID-19 guidance is mentioned. However, they offered more substantive advice that contradicts some states’ recent actions during their primaries. The CDC broadly supports “any feasible options for reducing the number of voters who congregate
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Americans’ Inexperience with Voting By Mail Creates Risks

July 6, 2020 | Dan Lips

States should expand absentee balloting but prevent ballot harvesting  Forty-six states and the District of Columbia will allow all voters to cast their ballots by mail in November’s election. But a recent analysis from the Pew Research Center shows that most American have not voted by mail–increasing the risk that ballot harvesting will affect election
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FCC Moves to Ban Huawei and ZTE from Receiving Federal Subsidies—But More Action Is Needed

June 30, 2020 | Alexiaa Jordan

Today the Federal Communications Commission formally designated Chinese telecommunication firms Huawei Technologies Company and ZTE Corporation—and their parents, affiliates, and subsidiaries—as posing national security threats. This move prohibits the use of the $8.3 billion Universal Service Fund, to acquire or maintain equipment from these companies. The FCC’s move to finalize this designation is an important
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Voting-by-Mail Shows Why Real Bipartisan Postal Reform is Necessary

June 25, 2020 | Dan Lips

In January 2017, former DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson designated election infrastructure to be critical infrastructure. At the time, he was focused on preventing cyber threats from disrupting the electoral process. But three years later, the most critical infrastructure for holding the 2020 election may be one of the nation’s oldest institutions: the U.S. Postal Service.
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Bipartisan Coalition of Senators Introduces Legislation to Protect Inspector General Independence

June 24, 2020 | Dan Lips

On Thursday, Senator Chuck Grassley and nine bipartisan co-sponsors introduced legislation to protect federal watchdogs’ independence. The “Securing Inspector General Independence Act of 2020” comes at a critical time of declining public confidence in government and demonstrates Congressional commitment to independent oversight.  in a recent article for The Hill, my former colleague Keith Ashdown and
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