Welcome to This Week in Civil Rights and Civil Liberties.

This week, the White House released its legal justification for the Soleimani strike, pressured the DOJ to lower its own sentencing recommendation for Roger Stone, lost a court battle over a Medicaid work requirement, and deployed tactical Border Patrol agents to sanctuary jurisdictions across the country. A new lawsuit challenges roadblocks to insurance coverage for abortion, while criminal justice reform measures in California and New York are implemented and North Dakota tribes achieve a voting rights victory. And, a New York Times reporter asks, “is this the end of privacy as we know it?”

It’s been a year since Bill Barr was sworn in as Attorney General—what’s going on at the DOJ? Lots. This week, the DOJ lowered its own sentencing recommendation for Trump associate Roger Stone and opted not to charge Andrew McCabe, former deputy director of the FBI. While four career prosecutors left the Stone prosecution team following the move, the President took to Twitter to praise AG Barr. Slate

New York’s cash bail reform continues to spark debate. Six weeks after New York became the most populous state to enact statewide cash bail reform, a debate over the policy continues, with class, race, and geography emerging as flashpoints. The New York measure was estimated to lead to a 40% drop in its pretrial jail population. It comes as jurisdictions across the country are considering reforms to their cash bail systems. Washington Post

White House releases legal justification for Soleimani strike. In the wake of the January airstrike on the Iranian general, Republicans and Democrats criticized the Administration for keeping them in the dark over the decision and what they considered the shifting justifications that followed. The public-facing memo released this week alludes to the “threat of imminent attack,” a phrase often repeated by Trump, but doesn’t go further. Bloomberg

“The end of privacy as we know it?” That’s the question New York Times technology reporter Kashmir Hill discussed on a recent episode of The Daily. Listen to her conversation on Clearview AI, the start-up that’s matching photos of unidentified people to their online images, solving crimes across 49 states – and leaving privacy advocates with serious concerns. The Daily

A Medicaid work requirement was struck down—what comes next? States, advocates, and HHS Secretary Azar are left asking this question after this week’s ruling on an Arkansas work requirement that would have left 18,000 people without health care. Several other states had put similar work rules on hold as the battle waged in the courts, and it remains unclear whether the Trump administration will appeal. Arkansas received a waiver from the Trump administration to implement the rule, a waiver this week’s ruling struck down as “arbitrary and capricious,” because it disregarded the statutory purpose of Medicaid: providing health insurance for the poor. New York Times

LA County will dismiss approximately 66,000 marijuana convictions. Following the legalization of marijuana in 2016, the California legislature passed a bill in 2018 that required the CA DOJ to find convictions that could be expunged or downgraded. 85,000 convictions have already been dismissed under the law. CNN and The Root

Tribes in North Dakota secured a voting rights victory. The Spirit Lake Nation and the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, as well as several individual voters, reached a settlement over a voter ID law that targeted and disenfranchised Native American voters. The law required that voters present state-issued ID with a residential street address, placing an undue burden on people living on reservations who may not have a street address as their permanent address. Many tribal members lack the necessary documents to obtain a state ID and use PO boxes as their permanent address. NPR

A new lawsuit challenges the latest roadblock to abortion access. Planned Parenthood and the ACLU are suing the Trump administration over a rule that requires insurers in the ACA individual marketplace to send a separate bill for abortion care, which customers will be required to pay for in a separate transaction. This will affect over 3 million Americans and will cost insurers an additional $1 billion, leading advocates to worry about higher costs for consumers and the risk that insurers may opt to not cover abortion care. The Hill

Trump administration prepares to deploy tactical Border Patrol units across the country. 100 agents will target sanctuary jurisdictions, a move the ACLU has characterized as part of a “broad pattern of reprisal” that puts communities at risk. Washington Post