uncategorized

Why does Alexa save transcripts of user conversations? This senator asked Amazon
Sen. Chris Coons wants to know why Amazon Echo users’ conversations are being saved to company servers

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, center, is pictured in the Capitol in June 2016. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A Democratic senator sent a letter to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos Thursday requesting information about why the company retains transcripts of conversations recorded by Amazon Echo devices, even after users have pressed “delete.”

Amazon’s voice-controlled operating system Alexa transcribes the conversations it picks up after users say a “wake word” — “Alexa,” “Echo,” “Amazon” or “computer” — or press a button to enable the Echo, according to a report by CNET. And the company saves those text files on its servers even after users opt to “delete” the audio files from the cloud, a CNET investigation revealed.

New rules for Airbnb could squeeze intern housing options
New D.C. law tightening home-sharing rules could increase sticker shock for students looking to intern on Capitol Hill

A sign advertises an apartment for rent in D.C.’s Capitol Hill neighborhood. A new D.C. law tightening rules on home sharing services could increase sticker shock for students looking to intern on Capitol Hill.  (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Home-sharing services like Airbnb are facing a crackdown by D.C. lawmakers who want to stop real estate investors from using buildings as de facto hotels. But what impact will a potential crunch on short-term housing have for interns looking for rentals in the District?

It can be daunting for interns seeking a place to stay in one of the nation’s most expensive cities. The initial excitement of landing that dream internship can quickly turn into panic, especially for students who need housing on short notice.

Reps. Crenshaw, Gallagher, Waltz urge more GOP veterans to run for Congress
Republicans cite Democratic successes in 2018 midterms, and seek to recruit more veteran GOP candidates

Rep. Dan Crenshaw, R-Texas, and two other Republican House members are making a push to elect more GOP military veterans to Congress. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Three Republican congressmen who served in the military are relaunching a PAC to help recruit more GOP veterans like themselves to run for Congress.

Reps. Dan Crenshaw of Texas, Mike Gallagher of Wisconsin and Michael Waltz of Florida announced Wednesday they are forming the War Veterans Fund PAC this cycle, which aims to recruit Republican veterans of U.S. wars in Iraq and Afghanistan to run in their home districts and assist them with funding.

Rapper T.I. wants to form the ‘Avengers’ of black investment
He honors Nipsey Hussle by turning tragedy into opportunity

Rapper, actor and entrepreneur Clifford “T.I” Harris speaks at a Wednesday press conference at the Capitol. He joined the Congressional Black Caucus in calling for more investment in black communities. (Caroline Brehman/CQ Roll Call)

“It was an incredible loss.”

That’s how Clifford “T.I.” Harris describes the tragic murder of fellow rapper Nipsey Hussle, who was gunned down outside his own Los Angeles clothing store in March.

Australia’s election upset looks an awful lot like Trump
It may be a world away, but revolutionary change doesn’t end at the water’s edge

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and his conservative government held on to power this week against the odds. If the elites were surprised, they weren’t paying attention, Winston writes. (Brook Mitchell/Getty Images)

OPINION — Donald Trump called his supporters the “silent majority” and the “forgotten man and woman” in the 2016 campaign.

Hillary Clinton called them “deplorables.”

Impeachment? Democratic Hill aides say no
Respondents to CQ’s Capitol Insiders Survey rejected the idea overwhelmingly

If the views of congressional aides are reflective of their bosses, there’s little appetite for impeaching President Donald Trump. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Since the release of special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s report last month, some Democrats have reiterated, or joined, the calls for impeaching President Donald Trump, on the grounds that he obstructed Mueller’s probe.

Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, for example, said on May 7 that the only mechanism to hold the president accountable and to ensure that the president is not above the law is for Congress to initiate impeachment proceedings. Texas Rep. Al Green, on April 30, said he’d introduce articles of impeachment, as he did in the last Congress.

Ocasio-Cortez grills CEO of pharma company making billions on government-patented HIV drug
Daniel O’Day faced scathing questions over taxpayers funding research and development for blockbuster drug

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., was among the Democrats on the House Oversight Committee grilling Gilead CEO Daniel O’Day on Thursday over the high price of the HIV prevention drug, Truvada. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Gilead CEO Daniel O’Day faced scathing questions at a House hearing Thursday, with Democrats demanding answers on how the drug manufacturer could charge $1,700 a month for an HIV prevention drug discovered through taxpayer-funded research.

“How can Gilead do this? How can our system allow a company to take a drug treatment that was developed with taxpayer funds and abuse its monopoly to charge such astronomical prices?” Oversight and Reform Chairman Elijah E. Cummings asked at the top of the hearing. “This lifesaving treatment would not exist but for the research funded by the CDC and the NIH.”

Kyrsten Sinema and Mike Gallagher are still the fastest members of Congress
Arizona senator and Wisconsin rep repeat in ACLI Capital Challenge

Democratic Sen. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona and Wisconsin GOP Rep. Mike Gallagher were the fastest members of Congress in Wednesday’s ACLI Capital Challenge. (Kathryn Lyons/CQ Roll Call)

The chill in this morning’s air wasn’t enough to give runners cold feet at the annual ACLI Capital Challenge.

The race, in its 38th year, pits members of Congress, high-ranking political appointees and judges, and members of the media against each other in a 3-mile race to see who’s the fastest — and fittest — in D.C.

How Father Ted outdid Forrest Gump
Notre Dame president popped up everywhere in the 20th century, says director Patrick Creadon

The Rev. Theodore M. Hesburgh, center left, joins hands with Martin Luther King Jr. and other civil rights protesters in the 1960s.(Courtesy O’Malley Creadon Productions)

As the Rev. Theodore M. Hesburgh was taking the reins at the University of Notre Dame in 1952, I was being born less than a mile away at St. Joseph’s Hospital, just off Notre Dame Avenue in South Bend, Indiana. And while my mother was starting me off in the world, her sister, my Aunt Helen, was beginning what would be a 35-year career as Hesburgh’s personal secretary, for his entire tenure as university president.

So for me, watching “Hesburgh,” the new documentary from ND alum and award-winning filmmaker Patrick Creadon, was like zooming out on the familiar. It was an emotional journey back through not only my own life, but also a tumultuous period for our nation — one that isn’t over yet.

Anthony Weiner is a free man
Former New York Democrat walks out of Bronx halfway house free, but registered a Level 1 sex offender

Former Rep. Anthony Weiner leaves Manhattan Federal Court, September 25, 2017 in New York City. Weiner was sentenced to 21 months in prison for sexting with a minor. He was released from a Bronx halfway house on Tuesday. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Anthony Weiner is free.

The former New York Democratic congressman and New York City mayoral candidate emerged from a Bronx halfway house on Tuesday after spending more than a year-and-a-half behind bars, first in Massachusetts and later in the Bronx.