In The News

Supreme Court Rules Challenge to Trump Census Plan is Premature
Supreme Court
Supreme Court Rules Challenge to Trump Census Plan is Premature
2020-12-18 17:58:41
by Dan McCue

WASHINGTON - The Supreme Court on Friday dismissed a challenge to President Donald Trump's plan to exclude people living in the country illegally from the population count as premature. Trump's insistence that illegal immigrants be excluded from the count could... Read More

Shutdown Deadline Looms Over COVID-19 Relief Talks
Congress
Shutdown Deadline Looms Over COVID-19 Relief Talks

WASHINGTON (AP) — Bearing down on a midnight shutdown deadline, top negotiators on a must-pass, almost $1 trillion COVID-19 economic relief package are committed to sealing an agreement Friday as they resolve remaining differences in hopes of passing the legislation... Read More

Lawmakers Lay Blame for Opioid Epidemic on Purdue Pharma
Prescription Drugs
Lawmakers Lay Blame for Opioid Epidemic on Purdue Pharma
2020-12-18 16:01:29
by Tom Ramstack

WASHINGTON -- Members of Congress lashed into the Sackler family Thursday for its pharmaceutical company’s role in promoting a painkiller blamed for killing about 230,000 Americans. Lawmakers on the House Oversight and Reform Committee said the Sacklers and Purdue Pharma... Read More

Drive to Enhance COVID-19 Vaccine Awareness Garners Bipartisan Support
Health
Drive to Enhance COVID-19 Vaccine Awareness Garners Bipartisan Support
2020-12-18 15:58:45
by Sean Trambley

WASHINGTON - This week, Rep. Brad Wenstrup, R-Ohio, introduced legislation in the House to authorize a public advocacy campaign to promote COVID-19 vaccine participation and provide science-backed information to the public. Joined by Reps. Ron Kind, D-Wis., Roger Marshall, R-Kan.,... Read More

Man-Made Chemicals Could Affect Your COVID Response, Vaccine Results
Health
Man-Made Chemicals Could Affect Your COVID Response, Vaccine Results
2020-12-18 15:53:19
by Kate Michael

WASHINGTON — Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are man-made chemicals known to have a toxic effect on the immune system. PFAS like PFOA, PFOS, GenX, and others are manufactured and used in a variety of industries worldwide, including products for... Read More

N.J. Lawmakers OK bills to Create Legal Marijuana Industry, Stop Weed Arrests
State News
N.J. Lawmakers OK bills to Create Legal Marijuana Industry, Stop Weed Arrests

New Jersey legislators approved three bills Thursday that radically change how the state approaches drug use involving marijuana. The state’s Senate and Assembly voted first to create a new and legal marijuana industry from scratch and called for new regulations... Read More

Split-Ticket Voters Helped Biden Win Georgia. Can They Aid The GOP in The Runoffs?
State News
Split-Ticket Voters Helped Biden Win Georgia. Can They Aid The GOP in The Runoffs?

ATLANTA — A defunct county located in what’s now the heart of Atlanta’s fast-changing northern suburbs offers a glimpse into a challenge facing Democrats — and a potential bright spot for Republicans — in the Jan. 5 Senate runoffs. In... Read More

Trump’s Veto Threat on Defense Bill Tests Republican Loyalty
Pentagon
Trump’s Veto Threat on Defense Bill Tests Republican Loyalty

WASHINGTON — A Senate vote on overriding President Donald Trump’s expected veto of a massive defense bill may prove to be a final test of the Republican party’s loyalty to the commander-in-chief. Sen. Jim Inhofe, the Republican chairman of the... Read More

Kansas Republican Icon Bob Dole: ‘The Election is Over and Biden Will be President’
Political News
Kansas Republican Icon Bob Dole: ‘The Election is Over and Biden Will be President’

WASHINGTON — Former Republican presidential nominee and Kansas political icon Bob Dole said Thursday the election has been decided, whether President Donald Trump accepts the outcome or not. “The election is over and (Joe) Biden will be president on January... Read More

US Jobless Claims Unexpectedly Jump to Highest in Three Months
Economy
US Jobless Claims Unexpectedly Jump to Highest in Three Months

Applications for U.S. state unemployment benefits unexpectedly jumped to the highest level in three months, suggesting the labor market’s recovery is faltering amid the surge in COVID-19 cases and widening business restrictions. Initial jobless claims in regular state programs rose... Read More

US Cybersecurity Agency Warns of 'Grave' Threat from Hack
Cybercrime
US Cybersecurity Agency Warns of 'Grave' Threat from Hack

WASHINGTON -- The federal government's top cybersecurity agency on Thursday issued its most urgent warning yet about a sophisticated and extensive computer breach, saying it posed a "grave risk" to cyber networks maintained by governments, utilities and the private sector... Read More

US Gives Florida Wider Authority Over Wetland Development
State News
US Gives Florida Wider Authority Over Wetland Development

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — The federal government granted Florida’s request for wider authority over wetland development, a move announced Thursday that came under immediate fire by environmentalist who worry that the country's largest network of wetlands could be at risk... Read More

Winter Travel Raises More Fears of Viral Spread
Travel
Winter Travel Raises More Fears of Viral Spread

Tens of millions of people are expected to travel to family gatherings or winter vacations over Christmas, despite pleas by public health experts who fear the result could be another surge in COVID-19 cases. In the U.S., AAA predicts that... Read More

Pence, Wife Karen, Surgeon General Get COVID-19 Vaccines
Health
Pence, Wife Karen, Surgeon General Get COVID-19 Vaccines

WASHINGTON (AP) — Vice President Mike Pence was vaccinated for COVID-19 on Friday in a live-television event aimed at reassuring Americans the vaccine is safe. He celebrated the shot as “a medical miracle” that could eventually contain the raging coronavirus... Read More

Snags on COVID-19 Relief May Force Weekend Sessions
Political News
Snags on COVID-19 Relief May Force Weekend Sessions

WASHINGTON (AP) — It's a hurry up and wait moment on Capitol Hill as congressional negotiators on a must-pass, almost $1 trillion COVID-19 economic relief package struggled through a handful of remaining snags on Thursday. The holdups mean a weekend... Read More

2nd COVID-19 Vaccine Set for OK in US With Panel Endorsement
Health
2nd COVID-19 Vaccine Set for OK in US With Panel Endorsement

WASHINGTON (AP) — A government advisory panel endorsed a second COVID-19 vaccine Thursday, paving the way for the shot to be added to the U.S. vaccination campaign. The Food and Drug Administration is expected to follow the recommendation for the... Read More

Reps. Sewell, Reed Push Legislation to Expand New Markets Tax Credit
Rural
Reps. Sewell, Reed Push Legislation to Expand New Markets Tax Credit
2020-12-17 20:29:46
by Sean Trambley

WASHINGTON – This week, Reps. Terri Sewell, D-Ala., and Tom Reed, R-N.Y., introduced the New Markets Stabilization Act, bipartisan legislation that will preserve access to the New Markets Tax Credit for underserved communities.  “Historically underserved communities have faced tremendous economic... Read More

Legislation to Protect and Increase Sustainable Retirement Investment
Senior Citizens
Legislation to Protect and Increase Sustainable Retirement Investment
2020-12-17 20:26:36
by Sean Trambley

WASHINGTON – This week, Reps. Cindy Axne, D-Iowa, Andy Levin, D-Mich., and Brendan Boyle, D-Pa., sponsored the Sustainable Investment Policy Act and the Retirees Sustainable Investment Policies Act, two pieces of legislation aimed at protecting and increasing sustainable investments. The... Read More

Biden Poised to Select North Carolina's Michael Regan to lead EPA
EPA
Biden Poised to Select North Carolina's Michael Regan to lead EPA
2020-12-17 20:23:09
by Dan McCue

WILMINGTON, Del. - President-elect Joe Biden will nominate Michael Regan, the top environmental regulator in North Carolina, to lead the Environmental Protection Agency, according to multiple reports. If confirmed, Regan would be the first Black man to head the agency.... Read More

Reps. Murphy, Katko Feature Lt. Gen McMaster in Latest National Security Expert Briefing
National Security
Reps. Murphy, Katko Feature Lt. Gen McMaster in Latest National Security Expert Briefing
2020-12-17 18:28:13
by Reece Nations

WASHINGTON — In the fourth session of their ongoing virtual national security briefing series entitled “National Security in the Shadow of COVID-19,” Reps. Stephanie Murphy, D-Fla., and John Katko, R-N.Y., hosted retired Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster to discuss how the... Read More

Youth Voter Engagement Could Change Landscape of the Nation
Think Tanks
Youth Voter Engagement Could Change Landscape of the Nation
2020-12-17 15:14:46
by Kate Michael

WASHINGTON — The 2020 national election saw a dramatic increase in turnout for the entire electorate. What surprised many is that a higher-than-ever percentage of that increase came from young people.  Young people turned out to vote in near-record numbers,... Read More

Senate Debates Tactics to Make America More Competitive with China
Trade
Senate Debates Tactics to Make America More Competitive with China
2020-12-17 14:36:00
by Tom Ramstack

WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Senate continued a hardline crackdown on China Wednesday during a hearing on how to ratchet up American economic competitiveness. Economic advisors repeated warnings that the U.S. government needs to create more incentives for domestic industries that... Read More

Biden Picks Haaland to be First Native American Interior Secretary
Political News
Biden Picks Haaland to be First Native American Interior Secretary
2020-12-17 14:11:59
by Dan McCue

WASHINGTON - President-elect Joe Biden has asked Democratic Rep. Deb Haaland, of New Mexico, to serve as the first Native American interior secretary, a historic pick for a department that oversees the country’s vast natural resources and much of the... Read More

Census Estimates US Population at 330 Million
Census
Census Estimates US Population at 330 Million

WASHINGTON — At least 330 million people lived in the United States as of April, according to a Census Bureau estimate released Tuesday that will serve as one of the first accuracy checks for forthcoming decennial census results. The agency... Read More

Supreme Court to Decide Whether NCAA Can Refuse Pay for Football and Basketball Stars
Sports
Supreme Court to Decide Whether NCAA Can Refuse Pay for Football and Basketball Stars

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court agreed Wednesday to decide whether major colleges and universities are violating federal antitrust laws by refusing to pay the football and basketball players who bring in hundreds of millions of dollars to their campuses. The... Read More

Electoral Votes Are In, But Congressional Count May Hold Another Round of Drama
Congress
Electoral Votes Are In, But Congressional Count May Hold Another Round of Drama

WASHINGTON – The 538 state electors gathered this week to cast votes for president with little drama, but some Republicans plan to complicate the usually ceremonial process of Congress counting the electoral votes on Jan. 6 — and that could... Read More

Groups Sue 4 Georgia Counties Over Early Voting for Senate Runoff Election
State News
Groups Sue 4 Georgia Counties Over Early Voting for Senate Runoff Election

ATLANTA — Voting rights groups have filed lawsuits against four Georgia counties for failing to offer sufficient early voting for the Jan. 5 runoff election. The New Georgia Project and Democracy Docket say Bibb, Clarke, Houston and Paulding counties are... Read More

Judge Rules Georgia Doesn’t Have to Immediately Restore Purged Voters
State News
Judge Rules Georgia Doesn’t Have to Immediately Restore Purged Voters

ATLANTA — A federal judge on Wednesday declined to force the state to immediately restore hundreds of thousands of people that were removed from the voting rolls last year. Voting rights organizations, including the Black Voters Matter Fund, sued Georgia... Read More

Fired Cybersecurity Official Rebuts GOP Claims of Election Fraud at Senate Hearing
Cybersecurity
Fired Cybersecurity Official Rebuts GOP Claims of Election Fraud at Senate Hearing

WASHINGTON — The U.S. cybersecurity chief fired by President Donald Trump last month after he pushed back on allegations of election fraud testified before Congress on Wednesday that such baseless conspiracy theories are having a “corrosive” effect on the public’s... Read More

Vaccines' Rollout and Pent-Up Consumer Demand Brighten US Economic Outlook
Economy
Vaccines' Rollout and Pent-Up Consumer Demand Brighten US Economic Outlook

WASHINGTON — If the new COVID-19 vaccines prove effective and are widely accepted, the result could be a welcome surge in the nation's economy as well as an end to the pandemic nightmare. That's because millions of Americans, especially those... Read More

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