Erik Telford is Senior Vice President of the Franklin Center for Government & Public Integrity. He has previously served as Director of Membership & Online Strategy at Americans for Prosperity, where he founded RightOnline. He serves on the board of Empower Action Group. Follow him on Twitter: @BlameTelford. Views expressed here are his own.


    Left Wing Media Group Calls Out Hypocrisy of Left Wing Organizations

    Free speech is the most fundamental principle upon which American society and our system of government are built. It’s why our founder chose to emphasize this above all other protections atop the Bill of Rights. Through a confluence of events, 2016 is shaping up to be an extremely consequential year for legal and policy decisions that will shape the future of speech rights in America, | Read More »

    Unions Funding Planned Parenthood: The Case for Right to Work

    Yet another round of undercover video footage of Planned Parenthood officials discussing potentially illegal practices involved in the sale of remains and organ harvesting has emerged. The ongoing firestorm has ignited a national debate over the controversy of taxpayer funding to Planned Parenthood. The nation’s largest abortion provider has benefitted from hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars under the Obama Administration. But another important facet | Read More »

    Conservative Groups Issue Warning to Republican Leaders In Congress

    As Republican leaders in the House rush to pass an Obama/Google-backed overhaul of the U.S. patent system, leading conservative groups are speaking out against the legislation. The American Conservative Union, Club for Growth, and Eagle Forum have joined together to run a full page ad in the Washington Times and Washington Post, declaring in advance of a vote on H.R. 9: “China loves it. Inventors | Read More »

    The Republican Congress Should Protect Innovators

    You can only talk about so many “urgent,” “pressing,” or “huge” problems facing America before the rhetoric starts to wear thin and expose your true values, and that is exactly what is happening to President Obama in his call to overhaul our Constitutionally enshrined patent system. But Republican leaders in Congress are taking the bait, pushing for a vote within the next few weeks on | Read More »

    Shakedown 101: The Campus Speaking Tour of a Convicted Fraudster

    For most institutions, you would think that inviting a speaker who was found guilty of “egregious fraud” probably isn’t a good idea. Yet it seems that never occurred to anyone at Harvard Law’s Institute for Global Law and Policy, nor at Georgetown’s Center for Latin American Studies. The speaker in question is Steven Donziger, the controversial lawyer at the center of a $9.5 billion case | Read More »

    Perjury in Wisconsin: Chief Justice Shirley Abrahamson Forsees the Future

    Supreme court justices tend to be quite intelligent professionals, possessing sharp, analytical minds and an uncanny foresight into the ramifications of their decisions. But seeing into the future? Well, that’s usually the domain of soothsayers, Marty McFly or Nate Silver – unless you’re Wisconsin chief justice Shirley Abrahamson. It’s no surprise that Abrahamson was not a fan of the recent voter-approved change to the state | Read More »

    Duke Energy Takes A Stand in North Carolina

    The escalation of federal, state, and local government overreach presents a constant threat that warrants oversight and accountability. Sometimes, however, these actions are so egregious that the impropriety is self-evident. Last month, North Carolina’s Department of Environment and Natural Resources nailed Duke Energy for an unprecedented $25.1 million fine for coal ash contamination of groundwater near the company’s Sutton Plant. This sets a historic record | Read More »

    Google’s ties to the White House

    A weekly meeting with the White House goes a long way. As I’ve written on numerous occasions, Google’s intrusion into the power structures of Washington over the past five years is something we ought to keep an eye on. Specifically, Google’s escape from the Federal Trade Commission’s 2012 antitrust investigation into its practices of influencing searches to promote its own products serves as Exhibit A | Read More »

    Stacking the Deck in Fight Over Online Gambling Ban

    After the FCC’s radical decision to regulate the Internet as a public utility through the misuse of a 1934 law, the last thing we need right now is even more government control over the Internet. Yet, that is exactly what Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) is attempting to do by proposing legislation that would federally prohibit online gambling. New Jersey, Delaware, and Nevada have all recently | Read More »

    Upgrading Privacy Laws For The Digital Age

    Upgrading Privacy Laws For The Digital Age

    When Congress passed the Electronic Communications Privacy Act in 1986, the Internet was still in its infancy. Google was just an absurdly big number most people had never heard of. And Apple’s Macintosh Plus computer had a whopping 1MB of memory and retailed for $2599.  Back then, if an email had to be sitting in a server for more than 180 days, there was a | Read More »