Archives by: Jennifer Shutt

Jennifer Shutt

Jennifer Shutt's articles and posts

Congress News Top Story

Bernie Sanders at U.S. Senate hearing rips Amazon over union opposition

WASHINGTON — Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders took Amazon to task Thursday at a congressional hearing, bashing the online giant’s leadership for fighting union drives and questioning whether the federal government should continue contracting with the multibillion-dollar company. Amazon executives didn’t attend the hearing but U.S. senators did hear from labor unions and the U.S. Government Accountability Office.

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Congress Health Law and the Courts News Top Story

U.S. Senate to try again on abortion rights after bombshell disclosure of draft opinion

WASHINGTON — U.S. Senate Democrats on Tuesday pledged a new vote codifying the right to an abortion after publication of a draft court ruling that showed the Supreme Court on track to overturn the landmark Roe v. Wade abortion decision. Democrats, who likely won’t have the votes to advance that bill, also predicted that abortion will emerge as a major issue in the upcoming midterm elections for members of Congress.

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Congress Health News Top Story

Nine rare cancers tied to burn pit exposure added to VA benefits list

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs is adding nine rare respiratory cancers linked to burn pit exposure to the list of illnesses eligible for disability and health benefits. President Joe Biden, who has said his son Beau Biden’s exposure to toxic fumes from the pits could have led to his death, announced the policy change Monday, saying in a statement he hopes to avoid repeating mistakes of the past.

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Health Law and the Courts News Top Story

States rush to revise their abortion laws as a major U.S. Supreme Court decision nears

WASHINGTON — Abortion access throughout the country could soon depend on a patchwork of state laws if a U.S. Supreme Court dominated by conservatives overturns the constitutional right it established nearly 50 years ago. The court’s decision on Mississippi’s 15-week abortion ban is expected sometime within the next two months. But state legislatures have been racing to prepare for the expected landmark ruling by shepherding new, vastly different pieces of legislation to their governors.

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Congress News Top Story

Biden budget plan would levy minimum tax on billionaires, boost national security

President Joe Biden sent a new $5.8 trillion budget request to Congress on Monday that calls on lawmakers to institute a minimum tax on billionaires and boost spending on national security.  The proposal, which lawmakers will undoubtedly change, asks Congress to provide $795 billion in defense funding, a roughly 4% increase, and $915 billion for domestic and foreign aid programs, about 5% more, for the fiscal year that begins on Oct. 1. The rest of the funding would go toward mandatory spending on programs like Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. 

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Congress News Top Story

VA eyes major changes in health care system as veterans flock to the South, Southwest

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs on Monday began the years-long process of restructuring its nationwide health care network, an endeavor that will require the president and Congress to sign off before it could begin. The restructuring would mean the closures or consolidations of some medical facilities, likely provoking opposition from communities and members of Congress.

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Congress News Top Story

Congress reaches deal on massive spending package with billions for COVID aid, Ukraine

Compromise bill funds local "earmarks" for the first time in several years WASHINGTON — Democrats and Republicans forged agreement early Wednesday on a spending package that will fund the government for the next eight months, as well as provide billions in emergency funding for COVID-19 and the war in Ukraine. The announcement means Congress should be able to avert a government shutdown

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Congress News Top Story

Here’s what you will hear Biden talk about in his debut State of the Union

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden’s first State of the Union address is set to focus significantly on the economy, with the former member of the U.S. Senate calling on Congress to pass much of the agenda stalled in the so-called Build Back Better bill. During the Tuesday night speech, which begins at 9 p.m. ET, Biden will urge lawmakers to send him legislation that would lower prescription drug prices, reduce how much families pay for child care and create a national paid family and medical leave program...

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News Top Story

Members of Congress from both parties urge tough sanctions on Russia

WASHINGTON — Both Democrats and Republicans in Congress on Tuesday called on President Joe Biden to impose severe sanctions on Russia after the country declared a broad section of eastern Ukraine independent before sending troops into the region. Members of Congress appear unified, for the moment, that the most the United States should do is restrict Russia's economy, not send U.S. soldiers to face Russian troops in the streets of Ukraine.

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Congress News Top Story

U.S. House panel debates record number of guns found at airport checkpoints

WASHINGTON — U.S. House members wrestled Tuesday with how to address a spike in travelers trying to bring firearms through airport screening points in carry-on bags. During 2021, Transportation Security Administration officers detected 5,972 firearms at checkpoints, 86 percent of which were loaded. That number was up from the previous record of 4,432 discovered in 2019. ...

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