Pluribus AM: Calif.’s kids privacy law takes a loss in court

Good morning, it’s Tuesday, September 19, 2023. In today’s edition, judge blocks California kid’s privacy bill; AGs back Montana’s TikTok ban; Utah Speaker quits to focus on U.S. Senate bid:

Top Stories

PRIVACY: A U.S. District Court judge has blocked California’s Age-Appropriate Design Code, a first-in-the-nation measure meant to protect children’s digital privacy, over First Amendment concerns. The bill, which would have required tech companies to set default privacy settings for minor users, was challenged by a tech industry trade group funded by Amazon, Google, Meta and TikTok. (Pluribus News)

SOCIAL MEDIA: Eighteen attorneys general, all Republicans, urged a federal judge to side with Montana over its statewide ban on TikTok. The Montana law would impose fines of $10,000 every time someone uses TikTok within state borders. (Reuters)

ABORTION: Twenty-four Democratic attorneys general have signed onto a legal challenge the Biden administration is waging against an Idaho law banning abortions. The attorneys general wrote in an amicus brief that the Idaho law violates federal laws requiring pregnant people receive emergency medical care. (Michigan Advance)

MORE: Planned Parenthood has resumed offering abortion services in Wisconsin a month after a judge ruled that a 1849 state law banning abortions does not apply to medical procedures. An appeal of the judge’s ruling is headed to the state Supreme Court. (Associated Press)

ALCOHOL: Virginia’s newly signed budget includes funding for a new Virginia Beer Distribution Company, a division of the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services that will allow local breweries to self-distribute beer to retailers and restaurants. The plan allows breweries to circumvent traditional third-party distributors. (Richmond BizSense)

There are no more complicated politics in any state than the politics of booze.

INSURANCE: Florida Speaker-elect Daniel Perez (R), formally selected to lead the House next session, said he would focus the legislature on the property insurance crisis next term. Perez said a focus on lawsuit reform this session only “chipped” away at the problem. (Orlando Sentinel, Florida Politics)

VOTING RIGHTS: Pennsylvania Gov. Josh Shapiro (D) said Tuesday his state will become the 24th to allow automatic voter registration. Shapiro said every Pennsylvania resident who goes to the Department of Motor Vehicles to obtain or renew a driver’s license will be automatically registered to vote, unless they opt out. (Harrisburg Patriot-News)

LGBTQ RIGHTS: Florida’s Board of Governors, which oversees state universities, will consider a regulation at a meeting Wednesday to make it a fireable offense if a transgender employee uses a restroom that aligns with their gender identity. If approved, the board would vote to finalize the rule at a November meeting. (Tallahassee Democrat)

STADIUMS: Wisconsin Republicans plan to appropriate $600 million to renovate the Milwaukee Brewers’ American Family Field to keep the team through 2050. Democrats aren’t happy that the plan includes $200 million from the city and county of Milwaukee. (Wisconsin Examiner)

In Politics & Business

UTAH: House Speaker Brad Wilson (R) will resign his seat ahead of a likely bid to replace retiring U.S. Sen. Mitt Romney (R). Wilson officially filed campaign papers to run for Romney’s seat in April; he’s raised more than $1 million since then, and loaned his campaign another million dollars. (Salt Lake Tribune)

FLORIDA: U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz (R) is hinting strongly to major donors that he will run for governor in 2026. The race to replace Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) — if DeSantis finishes his term — will be crowded: Agriculture Commissioner Wilton Simpson (R), CFO Jimmy Patronis (R), U.S. Rep. Mike Waltz (R) and Attorney General Ashley Moody (R) are also eyeing bids. (NBC News)

KENTUCKY: Attorney General Daniel Cameron (R) said he would sign legislation allowing for exceptions for rape and incest to Kentucky’s near-total ban on abortion. Cameron had previously supported the ban as-is, without exceptions. (Lexington Herald-Leader)

TEXAS: Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick (R) has asked state Auditor Lisa Collier to conduct a full financial audit of the costs of impeachment proceedings that targeted Attorney General Ken Paxton (R). Patrick castigated House Republicans for pursuing the impeachment, in which Paxton was acquitted on all charges. (Texas Tribune)

SOUTH DAKOTA: State Democrats have elected Shane Merrill as their next party chair, a month after former chair Jennifer Slaight-Hansen was recalled for allegedly violating party rules and creating a hostile work environment. (South Dakota Public Broadcasting)

PEOPLE: Former Kentucky Gov. Brereton Jones (D) has died at 84. Jones helped improve health care and strengthen ethics laws during his single term in office from 1991 to 1995. (Associated Press)

By The Numbers

$555 million: The estimated budget surplus Maryland will take into next year’s budget season. That’s about $211 million higher than budget officials expected to carry into the new year. (Baltimore Sun)

184,000: The number of Massachusetts residents who are on a waitlist for subsidized apartments in the commonwealth. An investigation by WBUR and ProPublica found 2,300 state-funded apartments are sitting vacant. Almost 1,800 vacant units have been empty for more than 60 days.

Off The Wall

The town of Paola, Kan., has returned a 1,000-year old Nazca artifact to a Peruvian official on Monday, the first of 38 pieces in a local museum’s pre-Columbian collection it is hoping to repatriate. The official from Peru’s Dallas general consulate borrowed her son’s school duffel bag to transport the polychrome vessel back to her office. The local museum is in talks with Mexican officials to repatriate other artifacts. (Kansas Reflector)

Forget pic-a-nic baskets, Yogi wants donuts. Two bears raided a Krispy Kreme donut van that was delivering delicious treats to a convenience store at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in Anchorage, taking their sweet time even as the driver banged on the side of the van to shoo them away. Base security eventually got them moving with sirens. (Anchorage Daily News)

Quote of the Day

“The bottom line is that I just want donors to be assured that their contributions will be used appropriately, and in line with the representations that were made by the organization that solicited them.”

Hawaii House Speaker Scott Saiki (D), asking Gov. Josh Green (D) to issue emergency orders prohibiting and criminalizing fraudulent fundraising in the wake of last month’s fires in Maui. (Honolulu Civil Beat)