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Top court rejects Trump, won't let federal executions resume

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Supreme Court refused to clear the federal government to resume executions next week after a 16-year hiatus, rejecting a bid by President Donald Trump's administration to lift a court-ordered hold.

The Justice Department had sought to have the trial judge's hold lifted in time for Daniel Lewis Lee to be put to death next ...Read more

N.C. Republican George Holding won't run for reelection to Congress in 2020

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- Rep. George Holding, a North Carolina Republican, will not run for reelection in 2020 after his Republican-leaning district was redrawn into safe Democratic seat by state lawmakers.

Holding is in his fourth term in Congress. He said he would consider a return to elected office in the future. Holding said earlier this week that a ...Read more

Democrats' voting rights legislation doomed after partisan House vote

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- The Democrats' campaign to regain control of the House in 2018 included a pledge to restore a key provision of the Voting Rights Act. But a vote Friday signals their legislation is headed nowhere.

Their bill passed along party lines, 228-187, with only one Republican, Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania, voting "yes." It was ...Read more

Trump orders toilet rule review, saying people flush 10 times

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- Donald Trump's latest target for deregulation is Americans' toilets.

The president on Friday said he ordered a federal review of water efficiency standards in bathroom fixtures and complained that "people are flushing toilets 10 times, 15 times as opposed to once" in homes with low-flow appliances.

He said other bathroom fixtures...Read more

Pelosi says Democrats will release climate legislation in spring

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- Democrats will unveil major climate legislation in the spring after the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis releases a set of recommendations, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said Friday.

Pelosi said House Democrats would follow the conclusions of the committee, which was established at the start of this Congress and has ...Read more

Rep. Duncan Hunter announces he'll resign from Congress after the holidays

Politics / Political News /

SAN DIEGO -- Days after Rep. Duncan Hunter pleaded guilty to a federal felony related to a yearslong campaign finance scandal, he has finally stated explicitly that he will resign from his congressional seat before the end of his term.

"Shortly after the holidays I will resign from Congress," Hunter, R-Calif., in a statement. "It has been an ...Read more

House passes bill to curb voter suppression ahead of 2020

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- The U.S. House voted to require states with a history of voter suppression to get federal approval for changes to election law, part of an effort by Democrats to restore the process that was struck down by the Supreme Court six years ago.

The Voting Rights Advancement Act, H.R. 4, which passed 228-187 on Friday, is opposed by ...Read more

Duncan Hunter 'interview' was limited to questions suggested by his staff

Politics / Political News /

SAN DIEGO -- When Rep. Duncan D. Hunter on Monday wanted to make it known he would plead guilty to in the federal campaign finance case against him, he turned to a friendly local news station to deliver a heavily curated message.

The Alpine, Calif., Republican appeared on KUSI, a station where he had been interviewed many times at the anchor ...Read more

Trump country sees biggest income dips — and jumps

Politics / Political News /

In recent years, an oil boom has pumped up the incomes of many rural residents in Texas, even as flooding and the trade war have dragged down incomes in Nebraska farm country. Both cases are emblematic of a broader trend: The counties with the most dramatic income gains and losses since 2016 are mostly rural and Republican.

A Stateline analysis...Read more

Trump claims Constitution shields his tax returns from public

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- Lawyers for President Donald Trump told the Supreme Court on Thursday the Constitution shields the chief executive from being forced to disclose his tax returns in response to a subpoena from Congress.

"Imposing financial disclosure requirements on the president intrudes in an area that the Constitution fences off," they said in ...Read more

Lawmakers weaponize colleagues' call records

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- The impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump this week gave members of Congress a glimpse at a new and distressing weapon in partisan warfare -- the exposure of lawmakers' call records as part of congressional oversight.

The House Intelligence Committee report in its investigation into Trump's dealings with Ukraine included...Read more

Following guilty plea, Duncan Hunter told he shouldn't vote in the House

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- The House Ethics Committee notified Rep. Duncan Hunter that his recent guilty plea means he should no longer cast votes in the House. The instruction is not mandatory, but the panel threatened action against him if he continues to vote.

Hunter last voted on Wednesday, in favor of a measure to crack down on robocalls. He did not ...Read more

Supreme Court confronts homeless crisis and whether there's a right to sleep on the sidewalk

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- The Supreme Court meets Friday to consider for the first time whether the Constitution gives homeless people a right to sleep on the sidewalk.

The justices are weighing an appeal of a much-disputed ruling by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals that held last year that it was cruel and unusual punishment to enforce criminal laws ...Read more

Ex-Rep. Issa suggests clemency for Duncan Hunter as he runs for his seat

Politics / Political News /

SAN DIEGO -- On the day Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif., pleaded guilty to misuse of campaign funds in federal court, a GOP stalwart seeking Hunter's congressional seat was publicly discussing a possibility that had previously only been "what-if" chatter among people following the case.

In an interview with The San Diego Union-Tribune editorial ...Read more

Trump moves toward labeling Mexican cartels as terrorist groups

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- The Trump administration is moving forward on calls to classify Mexican drug cartels as terrorist organizations after the killing last month of nine U.S. citizens in Mexico, with top officials seeking to reach a decision this week, according to three people familiar with the matter.

President Donald Trump is scheduled to meet ...Read more

Congressional bill would expand access to housing vouchers for youth leaving foster system

Politics / Political News /

Young people facing homelessness as they age out of the foster care system soon could have easier access to federal housing vouchers.

Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown, a Democrat, is joining with Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley, a Republican, to propose legislation they say would alter the Family Unification Program to help prevent homelessness for youth aging...Read more

House Democrats to move on temporary 'SALT' cap increase

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- The House Ways and Means Committee could take up legislation as early as next week that would increase a limit on state and local tax deductions that has riled Democrats from high-cost regions, according to a senior panel member.

The "SALT" bill, which has not yet been released, is still in flux, but the $10,000 deduction limit ...Read more

Feds tighten food stamp rules: 688,000 adults must work or lose benefits

Politics / Political News /

CHICAGO -- Some 688,000 food stamp recipients will have to find work by April or risk losing benefits as the Trump administration issues a final rule making it harder for states to get exemptions from work requirements.

Those affected are able-bodied adults under 50 without children or other dependents, who represent about 8% of the 36 million ...Read more

Washington Democratic Rep. Denny Heck not running for reelection

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- Rep. Denny Heck announced Wednesday that he is not running for reelection. The Washington Democrat, who is a member of the House Intelligence Committee, cited the impeachment investigation as part of the reason for his retirement.

"The countless hours I have spent in the investigation of Russian election interference and the ...Read more

Trump administration moves to end food stamps for 750,000

Politics / Political News /

WASHINGTON -- The Trump administration will announce a plan Wednesday to end food stamp benefits for about 750,000 Americans, issuing a new regulation that makes it harder for states to gain waivers from a requirement that beneficiaries work or participate in a vocational training program, according to people familiar with the matter.

...Read more