Did Barack Obama win re-election by violating the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act?
This is the question posed by former Homeland Security attorney Stewart Baker, a blogger for The Volokh Conspiracy, a group blog organized by Eugene Volokh, a professor of American law at the UCLA School of Law.
Baker’s credentials make the question a serious one.
A partner in the Washington office of Steptoe & Johnson LLP, he returned to private law practice after serving for three and a half years as the assistant secretary for policy at the Department of Homeland Security, where he created and managed the 250-person DHS Policy Directorate responsible, among other duties, for relationships with law enforcement and public advisory committees.
The Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, enacted by Congress in 1986, is a broadly written law that in practice regulates virtually all computers and cellphones, largely because communications over the Internet tends to have implications for interstate commerce.