Supreme Court ducks decision on whether president has power to fire any top federal official

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- The Supreme Court sidestepped a constitutional dispute Thursday over the scope of the president's power to fire high-level federal employees.

Instead, by a 7-2 vote, the court ruled that administrative law judges who hear stock fraud cases at the Securities and Exchange Commission are "officers" of the United States, not civil ...Read more

Trump plan to expand Gulf drilling ignores impacts on wildlife, lawsuit claims

Politics / Political News /

MIAMI--A handful of environmental groups sued the Trump administration Thursday for failing to protect whales, sea turtles and other marine life in the Gulf of Mexico even as it pushes to expand drilling amid safety cutbacks.

In a lawsuit filed in federal court in Tampa, Earthjustice claimed the administration has yet to complete a long overdue...Read more

Trump administration recycles failed arguments to try to resurrect family detention

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- In asking a federal court to release it from a from a 2-decade-old settlement regarding family detention, the Trump administration is using the same arguments that President Barack Obama used to no avail in 2015.

The administration's arguments filed Thursday even cite a 2015 affidavit, when the Obama administration sought to ...Read more

Copper mine planned for Utah national monument shrunk by Trump

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- The red sandstone vistas in Utah's Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument may soon be criss-crossed with dump trucks after a Canadian mining company announced plans to begin operations on land cut from federal protection by President Donald Trump.

Vancouver-based Glacier Lake Resources Inc. announced last week it had acquired...Read more

Farm bill passes House as critics denounce work rules for food stamps

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- Farm legislation that would impose new work restrictions to qualify for food stamps narrowly passed the U.S. House after an earlier attempt failed last month because of conservatives' demands that an immigration vote be held first.

The five-year, $867 billion bill, passed 213-211 on Thursday, would extend subsidies for farmers and...Read more

Trump says Puerto Rico governor blamed power plant flaw on storm

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- President Donald Trump said Puerto Rico's Gov. Ricardo Rossello took advantage of a deadly hurricane last year to seek federal funds to rebuild a long-decrepit power plant, calling the move "very brilliant."

During a meeting with governors at the White House, Trump praised the federal government's response to Hurricane Maria in ...Read more

Trump administration heads to court, seeking to hold immigrant families in detention

Politics / Political News /

LOS ANGELES -- Justice Department officials asked a federal judge Thursday to change the rules on holding immigrant children in custody, saying they needed more flexibility to implement President Donald Trump's executive order to detain families of immigrants caught crossing the border.

A legal settlement the government reached two decades ago ...Read more

House postpones vote on a second immigration bill after voting down first

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- With a crisis over family separations still boiling on the border, the House on Thursday voted down a conservative immigration bill and abruptly postponed a vote on a more moderate proposal pitched as a compromise between battling Republican factions, an embarrassing setback for House leaders.

The first bill collapsed in a 193-231...Read more

Trump calls for reorganizing government

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- President Donald Trump proposed a reorganization of the federal government, aiming to combine the Education and Labor departments and shift control of U.S. food aid programs away from the Agriculture Department.

The plan also calls for an overhaul of the U.S. Postal Service, including the possible privatization of mail delivery. ...Read more

Time running out in Ryan's quest to overhaul welfare programs

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- Speaker Paul D. Ryan has spent his 20-year congressional career primarily focused on two issues, taxes and poverty. The Wisconsin Republican led a major rewrite of the tax code last year, but when he retires at the end of this term he won't have many accomplishments to tout on poverty.

The last big win for conservatives in the so-...Read more

White House struggles to move past migrant family separation crisis, with no reunification plan in sight

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- The day after President Donald Trump claimed he had acted to keep migrant families together, the fate of more than 2,300 children held in custody separate from their parents and that of future asylum-seeking families remained uncertain Thursday.

The continued confusion ensured the president's self-inflicted political and ...Read more

Trump's plan for immigrant families likely doomed in court, experts say

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- President Donald Trump may have a hard time reversing his policy of separating undocumented children from their parents at the U.S. border because his alternative may get shot down in court.

Implementing the June 20 directive hinges in part on whether U.S. District Judge Dolly Gee in Los Angeles agrees to amend a 21-year-old ...Read more

States stand to pocket billions as Supreme Court rules internet businesses must collect sales taxes

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- The Supreme Court on Thursday standardized taxing rules for traditional retailers and online transactions, ruling that states and localities may collect sales taxes on all purchases over the internet.

By a 5-4 vote, the justices that ruled that online sellers can be required to collect state and local taxes from customers even if ...Read more

Obama separated families at the border, too

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama separated parents from their children at the border.

Obama prosecuted mothers for coming to the United States illegally. He fast tracked deportations. And yes, he housed unaccompanied children in tent cities.

For much of the country -- and President Donald Trump -- the prevailing belief is that Obama was ...Read more

Trump administration and California clash in court over state's 'sanctuary' law

Politics / Political News /

SACRAMENTO, Calif.--Trump administration lawyers and California's attorney general jousted in a Sacramento courtroom Wednesday over a trio of laws designed to limit the state's involvement in enforcing federal immigration policy.

The hearing before U.S. District Judge John A. Mendez is not expected to yield a decision. Even then, it will ...Read more

Painful scenes of child separations force a rare retreat from the White House

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- A 2-year-old girl, with red sneakers and dark hair, crying as a U.S. Border Patrol agent searches her mother. Boys filing along white tents against a desolate desert backdrop. Toddlers screaming for their parents in a detention center in South Texas.

As wrenching scenes of the more than 2,300 immigrant children pulled apart from ...Read more

Trump's immigration order replaces one crisis with another

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- President Donald Trump's immigration executive order attempts to solve one contentious action -- the separation of families -- but will bring back another -- locking them up together indefinitely.

The order, which Trump signed Wednesday, directs the Department of Homeland Security to keep families intact when they are caught ...Read more

Air Force says planning for Space Force will be 'thorough' and 'deliberate'

Politics / Political News /

Planning to establish a new, separate U.S. Space Force, as directed by President Donald Trump earlier this week, is not expected to be a speedy process, Air Force officials say.

A letter to airmen signed by Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson, Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein and Chief Master Sgt. of the Air Force Kaleth Wright said ...Read more

Workers at Trump golf course and Terranea resort file lawsuit over 'panic button' ballot measure

Politics / Political News /

A petition drive to force the exclusive Terranea Resort and nearby Trump National Golf Club to provide employees with panic buttons and wage increases is now the subject of a lawsuit alleging that the city of Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif., is refusing to put the measure on the ballot.

The Los Angeles County Registrar of Voters certified last week...Read more

Vulnerable Republicans ready to work with Democrats if immigration votes fail

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- If House votes on immigration fail Thursday -- which lawmakers said is a real possibility -- vulnerable Republicans are ready to defy their party establishment and work with Democrats to revive the effort.

Votes on two Republican-authored immigration bills are expected late Thursday. One is a compromise pushed by GOP leaders. The ...Read more