ALEC Drops 'Stand Your Ground' Task Force

In today's link roundup: The American Legislative Exchange Council gives in to pressure. Plus: Georgia to require drug tests for welfare. 

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A protest against ALEC (Fibonacci Blue/The Campus Progressive)

ALEC drops "Stand your ground" task force: Pressured by watchdog groups, civil rights organizations and a growing national movement for accountable lawmaking, the American Legislative Exchange Council announced today that it was disbanding the task force that has been responsible for advancing controversial voter-ID legislation and the "Stand your ground" laws that limit the ability of police and prosecutors to pursue inquiries into shootings of unarmed individuals such as Florida teenager Trayvon Martin.

Oscar Grant movie in the works: If the deal goes through, Octavia Spencer will play the "tough and protective" mother of Oscar Grant, the  22-year-old father from Hayward, Calif., who was killed by former BART police officer Johannes Mehserle while unarmed and lying facedown on the train platform.

Gingrich: I didn't walk out on student interview: Newt Gingrich's team is denying that the GOP presidential hopeful walked out of a scheduled interview with a student reporter over the weekend, saying instead that the student's less-than-professional demeanor caused campaign staff to step in.

Georgia to require drug tests for welfare benefits: Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal has signed legislation that would require thousands of people applying for welfare to pass a drug test before they could receive benefits. The Republican-controlled Legislature passed the law over the opposition of Democrats, the Associated Press reports. 

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