Bipartisan compromise bill would restore abortion rights
A bipartisan group of senators is pushing compromise legislation to restore abortion access in the wake of the Supreme Court decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, a long shot effort to put a majority of the Senate on the record opposing the decision. While the bill is not expected to pass — and is unlikely to even get a vote — the legislation introduced by two Republicans and two Democrats on Monday is intended to send a signal to state legislatures and the public that a majority of the Senate supports codifying Roe, even if they can’t get the necessary 60 votes to pass it in the 50-50 Senate.news.yahoo.com
Sen. Tim Kaine, who was stuck in a winter storm traffic jam for 27 hours, jokes that talks on reforming Senate filibuster rules are going 'slow as my commute'
Kaine was among hundreds of motorists trapped on Virginia's I-95 for over a day after a winter storm led to dangerous road conditions.news.yahoo.com
A key to bridging the political divide: Sit down and talk?
One Small Step, which Isay established in 2018, is among a growing number of nonprofit initiatives whose aim is to narrow America's increasingly toxic political divide. But he felt it was a start, and he named his initiative accordingly: One Small Step. One Small Step, which Isay established in 2018, is among a growing number of nonprofit initiatives whose aim is to narrow America's increasingly toxic political divide. Yet they'd never met and probably never would have, if not for their joint involvement in One Small Step. But as One Small Step has developed, expansion has followed, with roughly 800 people meeting in pairs in about 40 cities.
Biden signals support to replace war power authority
The U.S. has blamed the militia for numerous attacks targeting U.S. personnel and interests in Iraq in the past. But several leading members of Congress, including members in Biden’s own party, denounced the strikes — the first military action he has authorized. Kaine and others argued offensive military action without congressional approval is not constitutional absent extraordinary circumstances. A U.S. contractor died after at least 10 rockets slammed into the base early Wednesday. “If we assess further response is warranted, we will take action again in a manner and time of our choosing,” Psaki said.
Ties with Saudis at stake as US releases findings on killing
President Joe Biden is expected to speak to Saudi King Salman for the first time in Bidens just over a month-old administration. The language came in contrast to Biden's pledge as a candidate to make Saudi Arabia “a pariah” over the killing. The Saudi Arabia Embassy spokesman in Washington did not immediately respond to a request for comment Thursday. U.S. intelligence findings are coming out more than two years after Khashoggi walked hand-in-hand with his fiancee to the Saudi consulate in Turkey. Once in office, Biden said he would maintain whatever scale of relations with Saudi Arabia that U.S. interests required.
EXPLAINER: What's ahead as Trump impeachment trial begins
The House appointed nine impeachment managers who will present the case against Trump on the Senate floor. Trump’s first impeachment trial, in which he was acquitted on charges that he abused power by pressuring Ukraine to investigate now-President Joe Biden, lasted almost three weeks. The fresh memories of Jan. 6 could make it easier for the House impeachment managers to make their case, but it doesn’t mean the outcome will be any different. While the House impeachment managers say Trump is “singularly” responsible for the attack on the Capitol, Trump’s lawyers say the rioters acted on their own accord. The brief goes after the impeachment managers personally, charging that the Democrats have “Trump derangement syndrome,” are “selfish” and are only trying to impeach Trump for political gain.
EXPLAINER: What's ahead as Trump impeachment trial begins
AdThe House appointed nine impeachment managers who will present the case against Trump on the Senate floor. Trump’s first impeachment trial, in which he was acquitted on charges that he abused power by pressuring Ukraine to investigate now-President Joe Biden, lasted almost three weeks. The fresh memories of Jan. 6 could make it easier for the House impeachment managers to make their case, but it doesn’t mean the outcome will be any different. While the House impeachment managers say Trump is “singularly” responsible for the attack on the Capitol, Trump’s lawyers say the rioters acted on their own accord. The brief goes after the impeachment managers personally, charging that the Democrats have “Trump derangement syndrome,” are “selfish” and are only trying to impeach Trump for political gain.
EXPLAINER: How Trump's second impeachment trial will work
A look at the basics of the upcoming impeachment trial:HOW DOES THE TRIAL WORK? AdTrump's first impeachment trial, in which he was acquitted on charges that he abused power by pressuring Ukraine to investigate now-President Joe Biden, lasted almost three weeks. “If we were not to follow up with this, we might as well remove any penalty from the Constitution of impeachment.”AdHOW IS THIS TRIAL DIFFERENT FROM TRUMP’S FIRST TRIAL? Beyond the constitutionality of the trial, Trump’s lawyers say that he did not incite his supporters to violence and that he did nothing wrong. “It is denied that President Trump ever endangered the security of the United States and its institutions of Government,” they wrote in a brief for the trial.
Democrat floats Trump censure as conviction grows unlikely
House Democrats are busy preparing their formal case against the former president for inciting an insurrection, with arguments starting the week of Feb. 8. A week later, on Jan. 13, the Democratic-led House impeached Trump with the backing of 10 Republicans. She said that five is probably “a high mark on what you’re going to see for Republican support” for convicting Trump at trial. Some said the censure resolution was too late because Democrats had rejected GOP suggestions of censure before the House voted to impeach. “I guess if we can censure former presidents, then when Republicans get in charge, we can censure Barack Obama or Democrats can censure George Bush."
For 1st Black Pentagon chief, racism challenge is personal
Austin took office Friday as the first Black defense chief, in the wake of the deadly insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, where retired and current military members were among the rioters touting far-right conspiracies. The U.S. population overall is about three-quarters white and 13% Black, according to Census Bureau statistics. Austin gained confirmation after clearing a legal hurdle prohibiting anyone from serving as defense chief until they have been out of the military for seven years. He held a broader video conference on COVID-19 with all top defense and military leaders, and his first call to an international leader was with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg. After serving as vice chief of the Army, Austin headed Central Command, where he oversaw the reinsertion of U.S. troops to Iraq to beat back Islamic State militants.
Democrats ask ethics panel to investigate Sens. Cruz, Hawley
Thousands had gathered that day as Congress voted to formally certify President Joe Biden’s victory over Trump in November. Hawley and Cruz led objections in the Senate to Biden’s victory, despite the widespread recognition that the effort would fail. And both senators used their objections for political fundraising,” the Democratic senators said in their letter. Cruz helped force a vote on Biden's victory in Arizona, while Hawley helped force one on Biden's victory in Pennsylvania. “This latest effort is a flagrant abuse of the Senate ethics process and a flagrant attempt to exact partisan revenge."
Tom Vilsack faces new challenges as he returns to old job
President-elect Joe Biden has selected Vilsack to reprise that role in his administration. Vilsack “has the necessary qualifications and experience to steer the agency through these turbulent times,” said Rob Larew, the president of the National Farmers Union. Then mayor of Mount Pleasant in southeast Iowa, Vilsack volunteered for the up-and-coming Biden before he exited the presidential race. Despite that, in 2007, after his own brief presidential campaign, Vilsack endorsed Hillary Clinton, even with Biden also running. In his endorsement, Vilsack called Biden “a man with empathy, and a man who has the heart of a president.
After year of disruption, America set to choose a path ahead
Voters appear to recognize the moment: More than 91 million people have already cast ballots, shattering records for early voting. The courts, which have been stacked with a generation of conservative jurists during Trump’s tenure, would veer further to the right. Though Democrats are wary of overconfidence, given Trump’s upset in 2016, party leaders see significant differences in this year’s election. Despite the pandemic’s toll on his political fortunes, Trump’s campaign is banking on strategy similar to 2016. The challenge for Trump is engineering a late shift in the race when so many voters have already cast ballots.
Harris target of more misinformation than Pence, data shows
CHICAGO – Long before Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden announced her as his running mate, Kamala Harris was the target of widespread online misinformation. Harris’ birth certificate shows she was born on Oct. 20, 1964, in Oakland, California, making her eligible to serve as either vice president or president. Social media chatter around Harris’ eligibility declined after being “eclipsed” by fact checks from news organizations that debunked it, Granston added. There's been a huge uptick in social media conversation around the vice presidential candidates this year, compared to the 2016 campaign. But misinformation around Harris has been more prevalent, making up more than 4% of the conversation on Twitter, Zignal Labs found.
Biden's lessons learned: spending time, money in Midwest
Biden's "campaign is doing a better job, even during COVID, of reaching out with the candidates and a voter-to-voter effort. Besides spending no time in Wisconsin and only five days in Michigan, Clinton didn't begin advertising in either until two weeks before the election. There's been more to Biden's sharper focus on Michigan and Wisconsin than showing up and spending money. Biden's Michigan campaign as well as national aides have contacted Kinloch more in the past two months than Clinton's did throughout all of 2016, he said. “They're looping everything we're doing individually together under the Biden campaign,” Kinloch said.
Harris highlights stakes of election in Barrett hearings
(AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Unable to block President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Sen. Kamala Harris used three days of confirmation hearings this week to remind voters of the stakes of the Nov. 3 election and how Democratic nominee Joe Biden would govern differently if he were in the White House. Known for her tough questioning of Trump's nominees, Harris took a lower key approach and avoided sparring matches with Republicans. Her messaging was muted in part because she appeared via video conference from her office, not the Senate hearing room, due to coronavirus concerns. “Democrats are wise not to play into their hand.”Republicans took note of the disciplined approach by Harris and the Democrats. GOP Sen. John Kennedy of Louisiana, who was next in line for questioning after Harris on Wednesday, asked Barrett a series of questions meant to rebut Harris.
Supreme Court vacancy likely to inflame presidential debate
Moderated by Fox News’ Chris Wallace, the 90-minute debate will feature segments on the Supreme Court, the coronavirus, the economy, race and policing, election integrity and the candidates' records. "This time it may actually turn out to be.”Both candidates are likely to repeat their talking points about the Supreme Court. But during the debate, their comments are likely to reach vast swaths of the electorate that haven't been following the campaign closely. But this Supreme Court pick gives them the exact reason to hold their nose and vote for somebody they despise because it falls in line with their ideological values.”The court vacancy will have to compete with Trump's taxes coming to light. Rocha said Biden will likely use the Supreme Court vacancy and other issues to try to rattle Trump and get him to blurt out ill-advised remarks.
Trump caps judiciary remake with choice of Barrett for court
Judge Amy Coney Barrett applauds as President Donald Trump announces Barrett as his nominee to the Supreme Court, in the Rose Garden at the White House, Saturday, Sept. 26, 2020, in Washington. Trump hailed Barrett as “a woman of remarkable intellect and character,” saying he had studied her record closely before making the pick. Trump, meanwhile, is hoping the nomination will galvanize his supporters as he looks to fend off Democrat Joe Biden. “We don’t have to do it before, but I think this will be done before the election," Trump told reporters Saturday. “I think this will end up in the Supreme Court,” Trump said Wednesday of the election.
Supreme Court fight could elevate Kamala Harris' profile
(AP Photo/Michael Perez)SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Kamala Harris is poised to become a leading figure in the Democratic opposition to President Donald Trump's Supreme Court pick, with her status as both a lawmaker and vice presidential nominee putting her in the center of the fight. The California senator is in a unique role following the death of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on Friday. She was widely praised by Democrats for her questioning of Brett Kavanaugh during the last Supreme Court confirmation fight. Beyond her questioning of Kavanaugh, he pointed to her 2017 questioning of then-Sen. Jeff Sessions as Trump’s first attorney general. “That would give her the flexibility to be able to be in D.C., maybe a little bit more than during a traditional presidential campaign closing stretch,” he said.