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USA 2015

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  1. -01-21-15 President's 2015 State of the Union Speech (MSNBC News)
      "President Barack Obama, in his State of the Union address to Congress, acknowledges cynicism about American political divisions and partisan gridlock, but insists that there remains opportunity for productive work and common ground." 01-15

  2. -01-22-15 King Abdulla of Saudi Arabia Dies (Time.com)
      "The special relationship between Washington and Riyadh has endured since 1945, when Franklin Roosevelt met with Abdullah’s father Abdulaziz ibn Saud and established an informal deal: the U.S. provides for the kingdom’s security in exchange for reliable oil supplies." 01-15

  3. -11-11-15 Republican Debate in 4 Minutes (Time.com)
      Provides snippets from the Republican Party debate on November 10, 2015. 11-15

News
  1. -001 National Climate Assessment Released (Time.com)
      "The White House pulled out all the stops for today’s rollout of the new National Climate Assessment (NCA), including making President Obama available to talk to local and national weatherpeople about global warming. The report itself—download the whole 839 page paper here—is an incredibly impressive piece of work, detailing the current impacts and projected effects of global warming in the U.S. across a range of geographic regions and economic sectors."

      "If the U.S. were as good at stopping climate change as we are at studying it, we’d have nothing to fear." 05-14

  2. -001 National Climate Assessment Results by Region (Christian Science Monitor)
      "The latest US National Climate Assessment, released May 6, 2014, represents the most comprehensive attempt yet to assess the current effects of human-triggered climate change on America, to set out the anticipated effects if global greenhouse-gas concentrations (mainly carbon dioxide) continue to rise unchecked, and to explore efforts to curb emissions and adapt to climate change." 05-14

  3. -01 Scientists: Global Climate Change Is Caused by Humans (Time.com)
      "95%. That’s how certain the hundreds of scientists who contribute to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which released the first chapter of its fifth assessment on global warming this morning, are that human beings are the 'dominant cause of observed warming' that’s been seen since the mid-20th century."

      "In science, which almost always speaks in probabilities, that’s about as clear as you get."

      "Going beyond the conclusions seen in the last four assessments, which date back to the early 1990s, this year the IPCC formally endorsed a 'carbon budget'—a red line for the amount of carbon dioxide, created chiefly by burning fossil fuels and through deforestation, that can be emitted without warming increasing beyond an internationally agreed target of 3.6 F (2 C). Think of it as a speed limit for the global economy—emit more than one trillion tons of carbon, and we’ll likely be in the red. That should be worrying, given the fact that there are 3 trillion tons of carbon left in the ground, and as I wrote in TIME this week, energy companies are developing new technologies, like hydrofracking and directional drilling, that are enabling them to find fossil fuels that were long considered uneconomical."

  4. -01-01-15 Mario Cuomo, Former New York Governor, Dies (NBC News)
      "Former New York Governor Mario Cuomo, who served three terms in office from 1983 to 1994, and whose son currently holds the office, has died at the age of 82." 01-15

  5. -01-18-15 President Obama Proposes Closing Tax Loopholes (Huffington Post)
      "During his State of the Union address on Tuesday, President Barack Obama will lay out a plan to extend tax credits to the middle class by hiking taxes on wealthier Americans and big banks, according to senior administration officials."

      "Under the plan, the capital gains tax for couples with income over $500,000 per year would be raised from its current level of 23.8 percent up to 28. The plan would also strip a tax break, known as a 'step-up,' that allows heirs to avoid capital gains taxes on large inheritances." 01-15

  6. -01-18-15 The State of the Economy in America (MSNBC News)
      A couple of strong quarters of GDP and job growth can’t fix that. We have a long-term, structural inequality problem, such that we cannot count on overall growth to reliably lift the middle class and the poor. Since the recovery began in mid-2009, real GDP is up 13%, the stock market has doubled in value (again, in real terms), but median household income is flat."

      "How do we square that fact with claims about an 'American resurgence'?"

      "To answer the question, we must distinguish between structural and cyclical. Economies trundle along in two broad frequencies. Shorter-term, cyclical movements yield periods of recession and expansion. Unfortunately, when the expansions mostly reach the top 1%, it’s not easy for the average person to tell the difference. We squirrely economists even had to invent a new term: jobless recoveries, where GDP is growing but employment is not." 01-15

  7. -01-25-15 GOP Presidential Hopefuls Gather (MSNBC News)
      "An array of Republican presidential prospects made their opening pitch to conservative activists at the Iowa Freedom Summit on Saturday, setting the stage for a long campaign to win the state’s first-in-the-nation caucus."

      "The event, organized by Iowa Congressman Steve King and conservative advocacy group Citizens United, was the highest profile gathering yet of likely 2016 candidates and its organizers billed it as an unofficial kickoff to the Republican primaries. Speakers included Chris Christie, Scott Walker, Ted Cruz, Rick Santorum, Rick Perry, Mike Huckabee, Ben Carson, Carly Fiorina, and Sarah Palin, among others." 01-15

  8. -01-25-15 Jeb Bush Declares He Is for Immigration Reform (MSNBC News)
      "Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush reaffirmed his support for a pathway to legal status for undocumented immigrants....”

      "The reforms he endorsed in his speech fall in line with the basic pillars a bipartisan group of senators had agreed upon before their immigration overhaul effort fell apart in Congress: Change the legal immigration system to prioritize economic growth; improve not only border security, but also legal visa enforcement; and impose new requirements for English and civics education for newcomers. But unlike the Senate plan, Bush did not explicitly endorse a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants, only a path to legal status." 01-15

  9. -01-30-15 Romney Withdraws from 2016 Bid for President (Time.com)
      "Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney told donors and supporters Friday that he will not run for president, just three weeks after upending the GOP field by suggesting he was seriously considering a third bid for the White House." 01-15

  10. -02-08-15 Pope Francis to Take a Position on Climate Change (TechTimes.com)
      "Word is out that the head of the Roman Catholic Church will soon urge its 1.2 billion members worldwide to act on climate change, with the Pope anticipated to issue an encyclical this year that will tackle the issue of global warming and human ecology."

      "The document, which will be given to 5,000 bishops and 400,000 priests for distribution to their parishioners, will direct Catholics to take action on climate change on scientific and moral grounds."

      "With its network of hospitals, schools, parish centers, seminaries and other institutions, the Church spends billions for its energy use. The Pope's position on climate change could lead to installations of renewable energy sources, such as solar systems in establishments and institutions that the Church has stakes in." 02-15

  11. -02-09-15 Supreme Court Clears Alabama for Same-Sex Marriage (MSNBC News)
      "Gay and lesbian couples began receiving marriage licenses in Alabama Monday, following the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to deny the state’s request for a stay of a federal ruling that struck down the state’s ban on same-sex nuptials. The action cleared the final hurdle for Alabama to become the 37th state – and second in the Deep South after South Carolina – where gay and lesbian couples can legally wed." 02-15

  12. -02-12-15 Ashton Carter (Wikipedia.org)
      "Ashton Baldwin 'Ash' Carter (born on September 24, 1954) is a physicist and United States Department of Defense official who was nominated by President Barack Obama on December 5, 2014, to replace Chuck Hagel as the United States Secretary of Defense.[2]" 02-15

  13. -02-12-15 Ashton Carter Confirmed as New Secretary of Defense (New York Times)
      "The Senate on Thursday confirmed Ashton B. Carter to be the next defense secretary, installing a new Pentagon chief as the United States increases military action against the Islamic State." 02-15

  14. -02-12-15 Leaders Agree to Ukraine Cease-Fire (Time.com)
      "Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday emerged from marathon Ukraine peace talks by announcing a new cease-fire deal, but questions remained whether Ukraine and the pro-Russian rebels have agreed on its terms." 02-15

  15. -02-12-15 Oregon Governor Resigns Amid Scandal (New York Times)
      "Gov. John Kitzhaber, long regarded as a wily survivor of Oregon politics, resigned Friday amid a spiraling crisis that included a criminal investigation of the role that his fiancée played in his administration as well as crumbling support from his Democratic Party colleagues."

      "It was a steep and rapid fall for Mr. Kitzhaber, 67, a former emergency room doctor who won an unprecedented fourth term as governor in November. His resignation means that Kate Brown, the Oregon secretary of state and a fellow Democrat, will become governor, in accordance with the succession plan in the state Constitution." 02-15

  16. -02-12-15 West Coast Ports Go Quiet From Labor Dispute (ABC News)
      "Companies that operate marine terminals didn't call workers to unload ships Thursday that carry car parts, furniture, clothing, electronics — just about anything made in Asia and destined for U.S. consumers. Containers of U.S. exports won't get loaded either."

      "The partial lockout is the result of an increasingly damaging labor dispute between dockworkers and their employers." 02-15

  17. -02-17-15 Court Temporarily Halts President's Immigration Program (Huffington Post)
      "A federal judge issued a preliminary injunction on Monday that will temporarily prevent the Obama administration from moving forward with its executive actions on immigration while a lawsuit against the president works its way through the courts."

      "According to the suit, Obama's executive actions violate the Constitution, and allowing them to move forward would cause 'dramatic and irreparable injuries' to the plaintiff states."

      "The White House has said that Obama acted within his authority and that the policies will allow immigration enforcement agents to focus on deporting higher-priority offenders such as convicted criminals, recent border-crossers and those who pose national security threats."

      "Obama's executive actions are at the center of a congressional impasse over funding the Department of Homeland Security. The dispute could cause an agency shutdown once funding runs out on Feb. 27." 02-15

  18. -02-19-15 President Clarifies: U.S. Is Not at War With Islam (Time.com)
      " 'Al-Qaeda, [ISIS] and groups like it are desperate for legitimacy,' he said. 'They try to portray themselves as religious leaders and holy warriors in defense of Islam … They propagate the notion that America — and the West generally — is at war with Islam. That’s how they recruit.' "

      " 'We are not at war with Islam' he said during the speech. 'We are at war with people who have perverted Islam.' ” 02-15

  19. -02-21-15 Food Challenge at Worst Since World War II (Huffington Post)
      "The World Food Program is confronting its worst challenge since World War II in trying to tackle five top-level humanitarian crises at the same time, the head of the U.N. agency said Friday.” 02-15

  20. -02-23-15 Dr Soon's Ties to Fossil-Fuel Industry Revealed (New York Times)
      "One of the names they invoke most often is Wei-Hock Soon, known as Willie, a scientist at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics who claims that variations in the sun’s energy can largely explain recent global warming."

      "He has accepted more than $1.2 million in money from the fossil-fuel industry over the last decade while failing to disclose that conflict of interest in most of his scientific papers."

      "Though often described on conservative news programs as a 'Harvard astrophysicist,' Dr. Soon is not an astrophysicist and has never been employed by Harvard. He is a part-time employee of the Smithsonian Institution with a doctoral degree in aerospace engineering." 02-15

  21. -02-24-15 President Vetoes XL Pipeline (Time.com)
      "President Obama issued his first veto since 2010, striking down a law that would authorize the Keystone XL pipeline, a major symbolic battle between environmental activists and the oil industry."

      " 'Through this bill, the United States Congress attempts to circumvent longstanding and proven processes for determining whether or not building and operating a cross-border pipeline serves the national interest,' Obama said in a statement."

      "The State Department reported last year that the pipeline would indirectly and directly support around 42,000 jobs over two years, but would only employ around 50 people once the pipeline was functional." 02-15

  22. -02-26-15 FCC Passes Net Neutrality Rules (MSNBC News)
      "After more than a year of heated public debate, the Federal Communications Commission on Thursday passed “net neutrality” rules: They allow the agency to prohibit Internet service providers from granting faster access to companies that pay for the privilege." 02-15

  23. -02-26-15 Leonard Nimoy of Star Trek Dies (CBS News)
      "Leonard Nimoy, probably best known as Mr. Spock on 'Star Trek,' has died. He was 83." 02-15

  24. -02-28-15 House Democrats Save Department of Homeland Security from Shutdown (Time.com)
      "With just hours to go before a midnight deadline, Congress passed a one-week extension to fund the Department of Homeland Security and prevent sending 30,000 government employees home on furlough." 02-15

  25. -02-28-15 Putin Critic Murdered (Time.com)
      "The Russian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov was gunned down in Moscow around midnight on Friday as he walked within view of the Kremlin walls." 02-15

  26. -03-04-15 Attorney General: Ferguson Police and Courts Guilty (Time.com)
      "Holder cited several damning statistics about how the police routinely discriminated against black residents: Almost 90% of unnecessary force was directed at African-Americans; the use of police dogs was exclusively reserved for African-Americans; and 90% of stops and arrests for “manner of walking in roadway” involved African-Americans."

      "Holder recommended several concrete changes and said the Justice Department reserves the right to 'force compliance and implement basic change.' ” 03-15

  27. -03-04-15 Report of the Attorney General: Ferguson Police and Courts Guilty (New York Times)
      "Holder cited several damning statistics about how the police routinely discriminated against black residents: Almost 90% of unnecessary force was directed at African-Americans; the use of police dogs was exclusively reserved for African-Americans; and 90% of stops and arrests for “manner of walking in roadway” involved African-Americans."

      "Holder recommended several concrete changes and said the Justice Department reserves the right to 'force compliance and implement basic change.' ” 03-15

  28. -03-09-15 Republican Senators Try to Undercut the President's Negotiations With Iran (New York Times)
      "Republican lawmakers warned the leaders of Iran on Monday that any nuclear deal they cut with President Barack Obama could expire the day he leaves office. The White House denounced the GOP’s latest effort to undercut the international negotiations as a 'rush to war.' ” 03-15

  29. -03-10-15 Editorial: Republican Senators Attempt to Sabotage U.S. Negotiations With Iran (Huffington Post)
      "A group of 47 Republican senators has written an open letter to Iran's leaders warning them that any nuclear deal they sign with President Barack Obama's administration won't last after Obama leaves office.”

      "If the Iranians are unwilling to sign a verifiable agreement with the international community to limit the application of their nuclear know-how to peaceful purposes, the U.S. will be left with two horrible options: a nuclear Iran or war.”

      "Unbelievably, these GOP senators are actively discouraging Iran from signing such a deal by arguing that the United States cannot be trusted to keep up our end. That is shocking. It's like someone interfering with negotiations being conducted by a hostage negotiator by trying to convince a hostage taker not to surrender because he will shoot him anyway.”

      "The fact is that if our international partners who have imposed sanctions on Iran believe that the United States has collapsed the talks, there will not be tougher sanctions; the international sanctions regime will collapse." 03-15

  30. -03-15-15 Executive Branch Must Reveal Work-Related Emails--But Not the Congress (Huffington Post)
      "Members of Congress who are demanding Hillary Rodham Clinton’s emails are largely exempt from such scrutiny themselves."

      "Congress makes its own rules. It never has subjected itself to open records laws that force agencies such as the State Department to maintain records and turn them over to the public when asked." 03-15

  31. -03-15-15 Letters on Iran Nuclear Pact (PBS.org)
      Includes a letter from White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough to Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Corker "warning Congress to hold off on legislation that may interfere with a final agreement on Iran’s nuclear program." Also includes a letter from Republicans in the U.S. Senate to leaders in Iran, warning them not to trust any agreement being negotiated with the United States unless it is approved by Congress.

      Editor's Note: Senate Republicans have also made it clear that they do not want the Obama administration to negotiate an agreement with Iran. 3-15

  32. -03-18-15 Netanyahu: No Palestinan State (MSNBC News)
      "Throughout his campaign, Netanyahu has accused foreign governments of funding NGOs, or non-governmental organizations, to undermine his leadership. But in the last four days, the prime minister has moved even further to the right, culminating in a statement Monday that there would be no Palestinian state if he is reelected." Editor's Note: Netanyahu won the election and continues to be the Prime Minister of Israel." 03-15

  33. -03-20-15 Editorial: Israel Chooses Apartheid for Palestinians (Haaretz.com)
      "It was once possible to argue that Israel's policies were not the same as apartheid because their stated goal, however imperfectly pursued, was to end the occupation. After Netanyahu's reelection, this is no longer the case." 03-15

  34. -03-20-15 Netanyahu Reverses Position on No Palestinan State (MSNBC News)
      "Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel on Thursday tried to backtrack from his pre-election declaration that no Palestinian state would be established on his watch, but his new assertions appeared to do nothing to assuage an infuriated Obama administration." 03-15

  35. -03-31-15 Administration Sets Goal of 28 Percent Drop in Emissions (Time.com)
      "The plan is the first step toward achieving an 80% reduction in carbon emissions by 2050." 03-15

  36. -03-31-15 Arkansas Lawmakers Pass "Religious Freedom" Bill (Time.com)
      "Arkansas lawmakers have given final approval to a religious-freedom bill that has drawn sharp criticism from opponents who say it opens the door to state-sanctioned discrimination against gays and lesbians." 03-15

  37. -04-02-15 US and Allies Gain Agreement With Iran (Time.com)
      "The U.S., Iran, the European Union, Russia and China announced that they had 'reached solutions on key parameters' to a nuclear deal April 2 after more than a week of tough negotiations in Lausanne, Switzerland." 04-15

  38. -04-04-15 Iran Deal a Long Time Coming (Huffington Post)
      "The nuclear deal as negotiated is a far cry from the kind of irresponsible capitulation critics of the negotiations charge." 04-15

  39. -04-10-15 Leader of Iran Has More Demands (New York Times)
      "Iran’s supreme leader on Thursday challenged two of the United States’ bedrock principles in the nuclear negotiations, declaring that all economic sanctions would have to be lifted on the day any final agreement was signed and that military sites would be strictly off limits to foreign inspectors."

      "The assertions by the leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, could be tactical, intended to give both the negotiators and himself some political space to get Iran’s hard-liners accustomed to the framework of the nuclear deal reached a week ago with the United States and other world powers." 04-15

  40. -04-12-15 Rivals Respond to Hillary Clinton's Announcement (Time.com)
      "Rivals were chomping at the bit even before former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton formally announced her presidential bid Sunday afternoon, releasing statements and videos and hawking swag attacking the Democratic front-runner." 04-15

  41. -04-17-15 Things to Learn from the Ayatullah's Speech (Time.com)
      " 'He throws a lot of red meat to his hard-line base to reassure them he’s still an anti-American revolutionary. But careful readers also notice that underneath all the vitriol, he leaves the door of compromise with the U.S. slightly ajar. ' " 04-15

  42. -04-19-15 Hundreds Attend Lonely Girl's 10th Birthday Party (Time.com)
      "A Minnesota mother was so distraught when all of the girls invited to her daughter's birthday party said they wouldn't be there that she took matters into her own hands and got an incredible turnout."

      "Ten-year-old Mackenzie Moretter has a developmental disorder called Sotos syndrome, which causes children to grow at a faster rate but often delays their social and intellectual skills." 04-15

  43. -04-24-15 Loretta Lynch Confirmed as Attorney General (CNBC.com)
      "The Senate voted Thursday to confirm Loretta Lynch as President Barack Obama's next attorney general." 04-15

  44. -04-27-15 Editorial: Opposition to the TPP Trade Agreement (Huffington Post)
      "But even without the negotiated texts, we do know something. The TPP simply can't be the kind of simple, lift-all-boats agreement that the president implies when defending the deal. Trade agreements simply aren't like that anymore -- and they haven't been for almost two decades. They concern who wins and who loses, at home and abroad, when national regulatory regimes are put under pressure by economic globalization."

      "The members of Congress now balking at fast track understand that the TPP will be about much more than trade. The president shouldn't insult them for pointing it out." 04-15

  45. -04-27-15 State of Emergency Declared in Baltimore (Time.com)
      "Days of angry but peaceful protests in Baltimore over the death of Freddie Gray devolved after his funeral Monday into scenes of rioting, arson and looting that carried into Tuesday, leaving more than a dozen police officers injured and prompting the declaration of a state of emergency as reinforcements arrived to restore order." 04-15

  46. -04-28-15 The Rise of Privatized Policing (Truth-Out)
      "Detroit's desperate, increased reliance on private security and a private-public surveillance partnership in monitoring dissenters provides a model backdrop to the kind of crisis capitalism at work not just in Detroit, but across the United States, as the ranks of privatized police forces continue to surge since the September 11, 2001, attacks, now dwarfing the public sector as budgets for police departments experience cuts throughout the nation." 04-15

  47. -05-12-15 Senate Democrats Rebuke President on Trade Policy (Time.com)
      "Senate Democrats have dealt President Barack Obama a stinging setback on trade by blocking efforts to begin full-blown debate on his initiatives." 05-15

  48. -05-16-15 Michelle Obama's Speech at Tuskegee (CBS News)
      "First Lady Michelle Obama's commencement address at Tuskegee University offers a revealing look at her role in the White House. Her speech on Saturday provided some of her most candid remarks on how she's grown into her role as the first black first lady." 05-15

  49. -05-21-15 CIA Briefer: Bush Administration Lied to the American People (Huffington Post)
      "Republican presidential candidates have been arguing over the past week that, in hindsight, President George W. Bush made the best decision he could have based on faulty intelligence when he launched the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq."

      "In this telling of history, Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney are cast as victims, and therefore blameless for the carnage and chaos that has resulted. But the man who briefed Bush and Cheney in the run-up to the war, former CIA Deputy Director Mike Morell, punctured that story Tuesday evening during an interview with MSNBC's Chris Matthews."

      "It wasn't that the intelligence community was giving the administration wholesale faulty intelligence. It was that the administration was lying to the American people about what the intelligence actually showed." 05-15

  50. -05-25-15 America's Views Align Well With Those of Bernie Sanders (Mother Jones)
      "Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, a self-described socialist, is an extremely long shot to defeat Hillary Rodham Clinton in the Democratic presidential primary. Does that mean his views on key political issues are too radical for America's voters? Not necessarily." 05-15

  51. -05-26-15 Appeals Court Blocks Immigration Plan (New York Times)
      "A federal appeals court on Tuesday denied the Obama administration’s request to lift a hold on the president’s executive actions on immigration, which would have granted protection from deportation as well as work permits to millions of immigrants in the country illegally." 05-15

  52. -05-26-15 Tainted Evidence Wreaks Havoc in Courts and on Lives (Christian Science Monitor)
      "Across the country, the criminal justice system is grappling with the fallout from decades of faulty analysis in criminal cases that may have resulted in thousands of wrongful convictions." 05-15

  53. -05-30-15 Former Governor Martin O'Malley (CNN News)
      "Martin O'Malley was an early and vocal supporter of Hillary Clinton's 2008 presidential campaign. Fast-forward eight years, and the former Maryland governor is taking on the former secretary of state for the same job." 05-15

  54. -05-30-15 Sen. Bernie Sanders (Wikipedia.org)
      "Sanders announced his intentions to seek the Democratic Party's nomination for President on April 30, 2015, in an address on the Capitol lawn.[1][2][3]" 05-15

  55. -06-17-15 Jeb Bush Disputes with Pope on Climate Change (MSNBC News)
      "But Bush disagreed with the sentiment Pope Francis expressed in the document. 'Numerous scientific studies indicate that the greater part of the global warming in recent decades is due to the great concentration of greenhouse gases … given off above all because of human activity,' Pope Francis wrote in the encyclical, a papal letter to bishops." 06-15

  56. -06-20-15 Editorial: The Confederate Flag Must Come Down (Time.com)
      "In his 1861 'Cornerstone' speech, Alexander H. Stephens, vice president of the Confederate States of America, left no doubt about what the Confederacy represented when he rejected the idea that slavery was a moral wrong: 'Our new government is founded upon exactly the opposite idea; its foundations are laid, its corner-stone rests, upon the great truth that the negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery subordination to the superior race is his natural and normal condition. This, our new government, is the first, in the history of the world, based upon this great physical, philosophical, and moral truth.' "

      "Let me be clear: I don’t think that everyone who reveres the flag is racist. Surely all of the people who apply for state-issued license plates bearing the flag do not believe in the hatred with which some people display it. For many South Carolinians, the flag at this point may well represent heritage without the taint of past racism."

      "But they ask should themselves, Whose heritage are they celebrating?" 06-15

  57. -06-24-15 Editorial: Why Governor Haley Wants the Confederate Flag to Come Down (New York Times)
      Provides the text of South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley's speech on why the Confederate Flag at the State Capitol should come down. 06-15

  58. -06-24-15 State Governments and Businesses Drop Confederate Symbols and Flags (ABC News)
      "U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell joined Kentucky's Republican nominee for governor, Matt Bevin, in calling for the removal of a statue of Confederate President Jefferson Davis from their state Capitol's rotunda."

      "Big businesses also took action: Wal-Mart, e-Bay and Sears Holding Corp. announced they would no longer sell merchandise featuring the Confederate flag, which e-Bay called a 'contemporary symbol of divisiveness and racism.' " 06-15

  59. -06-30-15 Churches Vote to Divest Over Israeli Treatment of Palestinians (ABC News)
      " The top legislative body of the United Church of Christ voted Tuesday to divest from companies with business in the Israeli-occupied Palestinian territories, in a sign of the growing momentum of a U.S. protest movement against Israeli policy." 06-15

  60. -07-03-15 Supreme Court Rules Same-Sex Marriage Is a Constitutional Right (SupremeCourt.gov)
      Provides the text of the Supreme Court rulling that same-sex marriage is a right protected under the U.S. Constitution and must be honored by states:

      "The right to marry is a fundamental right inherent in the liberty of the person, and under the Due Process and Equal Protection Clauses of the Fourteenth Amendment couples of the same-sex may not be deprived of that right and that liberty. Same-sex couples may exercise the fundamental right to marry. Baker v. Nelson is overruled. The State laws challenged by the petitioners in these cases are held invalid to the extent they exclude same-sex couples from civil marriage on the same terms and conditions as opposite-sex couples" 07-15

  61. -07-05-15 Greece Votes "No" On Europe's Bailout Offer (CBS News)
      "Voters in Greece sent shockwaves through Europe on Sunday by resoundingly rejecting creditors' demands for more austerity in return for rescue loans. The vote backs Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, who insisted a 'no' in a referendum on the offered bailout terms would give him a stronger hand to reach a better deal." 07-15

  62. -07-05-15 Trump Surprised by Severity of Response to Comments (CBS News)
      "All in all, Trump said, his presidential run so far has been "bad for my brand.' " 07-15

  63. -07-07-15 Editorial: The Choice Is Monopoly or Single Payer Health Insurance (Huffington Post)
      "If we continue in the direction we're headed we'll soon have a health insurance system dominated by two or three mammoth for-profit corporations capable of squeezing employees and consumers for all they're worth -- and handing over the profits to their shareholders and executives."

      "The alternative is a government-run single payer system -- such as is in place in almost every other advanced economy -- dedicated to lower premiums and better care."

      "Which do you prefer?" 07-15

  64. -07-07-15 Trees Hurt by the California Drought (Grist.org)
      "The drought may be killing lawns, but whatever — they’re useless. When drought starts going after trees, however, that’s another matter. As year four of California’s drought rolls around, the magical, shade-providing carbon sinks are starting to perish, thanks to a lack of rain and a more recent lack of lawn irrigation."

      "It turns out all that profligate sprinkling was feeding California’s trees — and when cities cracked down on turf, they inadvertently starved out the more useful urban greenery."

      "Which do you prefer?" 07-15

  65. -07-09-15 South Carolina Flag Is Voted Down (ABC News)
      "The South Carolina House has approved a bill to remove the Confederate flag from the statehouse grounds....." 07-15

  66. -07-09-15 South Carolina Flag Speech (CNN News)
      "When Jenny Horne stepped up to the podium to address South Carolina's House of Representatives, her first words let on that she was fed up. Just not how fed up."

      "Of the words stirred by passion in the debate that eventually led lawmakers to vote to remove the Confederate battle flag from the State House grounds, hers would burn themselves into memory." 07-15

  67. -07-14-15 Iran Nuclear Agreement Completed (CBS News)
      "The nuclear agreement between Iran and six world powers is the result of more than a decade of diplomacy designed to ensure the Islamic Republic cannot develop nuclear weapons." 07-15

  68. -07-18-15 President Obama Refutes Arguments Against Iran Nuclear Deal (CBS News)
      After a long week of defending the recently negotiated Iran nuclear agreement to skeptics in Congress and the international community, President Obama continues to take on the laundry list of what he believes are 'dishonest' criticisms against the deal." 07-15

  69. -07-23-15 Rick Perry Goes After Donald Trump (Politico.com)
      "Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry, who has already emerged as one of the GOP presidential field’s most vocal critics of Donald Trump, ratcheted up his rhetoric again Wednesday as he slammed the real estate mogul’s presidential bid as a 'cancer on conservatism' and warned that, left unchecked, Trump could be the demise of the Republican Party." 07-15

  70. -07-27-15 Donald Trump Leads Republicans in Polls (Time.com)
      "A CNN Poll on Sunday showed Trump leading with 18% support among Republicans. Former Florida governor Jeb Bush was second at 15%; Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker rounded out the top three at 10%. Trump’s ratings in the poll have surged 6 points in the last month, while his rivals have remained relatively steady." 07-15

  71. -08-01-15 Charles Koch Urges Corporate Leaders to Skip Corporate Welfare (Time.com)
      "Conservative billionaire Charles Koch told his ultra-rich friends that they face a 'life and death' decision whether to keep lobbying for tax breaks and government subsidies."

      “Business leaders (must) recognize that their behavior is suicide, that it is suicide long term." 08-15

  72. -08-03-15 President Presents Plan to Reduce Carbon Emissions (Time.com)
      "Calling it a moral obligation, President Barack Obama unveiled the final version of his plan to dramatically cut emissions from U.S. power plants, as he warned anew that climate change will threaten future generations if left unchecked." 08-15

  73. -08-05-15 President Compares Iran Discussion With Iraq Debate (MSNBC News)
      "President Barack Obama said on Wednesday that rejecting his administration’s nuclear deal with Iran would be a historic mistake — and he called it the most important foreign policy debate since the invasion of Iraq." 08-15

  74. -08-06-15 Transcript of the First Republican Presidential Debate With Candidates "Below the Cut" (Time.com)
      "Seven Republican presidential candidates met for an undercard debate on Fox News Thursday night." 07-15

  75. -08-07-15 A Leading Democrat Opposes Iran Deal (MSNBC News)
      "New York’s Chuck Schumer, the No. 3 Senate Democrat and the most influential Jewish lawmaker in Congress, says in an extensive statement posted online that he will oppose the Iran nuclear deal."

      "While Schumer’s announcement is a blow to President Obama, it comes after a flurry of key Senate Democrats announced they would vote in support of the deal, including Schumer’s New York colleague, Sen.. Kirsten Gillibrand. Other Democrats who voiced their support of the deal were Sens. Bill Nelson of Florida, Tim Kaine of Virginia, and Barbara Boxer of California." 08-15

  76. -08-09-15 Bernie Sanders Is at the Top in Polls for President (Huffington Post)
      "Democrats who are proud of their progressive values are filling arenas to hear Sanders speak in a direct manner (while others dodge questions) on contentious issues like Keystone XL and the Trans Pacific Partnership agreement. While the FBI is currently investigating the email security of one candidate, Bernie Sanders is narrowing Clinton's lead nationally and defeating Republicans in other polls." 08-15

  77. -08-13-15 Fetal Tissue and Planned Parenthood (MSNBC News)
      "Republicans have condemned Planned Parenthood for, they say, breaking the laws that regulate the legal donation of tissue after abortion, which the organization has denied. Some Republicans, including Rick Santorum and Rand Paul, have also condemned the entire practice, although when the ban on fetal tissue was debated in the early 1990s, many Republicans, including current Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, voted to lift it." 08-15

  78. -08-24-15 Good Samaritan Motorist Tries to Save Trooper (ABC News)
      "Edmonson also introduced the good Samaritan who he said wrestled the sawed-off shotgun away from the man accused of shooting the trooper."

      " 'This is a hero,' Edmonson said of Robert LeDoux of Iowa, Louisiana, a town of about 3,100 where one of Vincent's brothers is police chief. LeDoux was the first of four people who stopped to help." 08-15

  79. -08-24-15 Three Americans and an Englishman Stop Gunman (CBS News)
      "One serves in the Air Force, another recently served in Afghanistan in the National Guard, another is studying physical therapy in California - and all three Americans are being hailed as heroes for tackling and disarming a gunman they happened to encounter on a high-speed train between Amsterdam and Paris." The men are Aleck Sharlatos, Anthony Sadler, and Spencer Stone; they were joined by an Englishman, Chris Norman. 08-15

  80. -08-26-15 Trump Clashes With Key Journalist (Time.com)
      "Donald Trump attacked the most important journalist on Spanish-speaking television in a face-off on Tuesday in Iowa, telling anchor Jorge Ramos to “go back to Univision.”" 08-15

  81. -08-28-15 Editorial: Trump May Be Trouble for the Left (Time.com)
      "Trump’s candidacy is not without precedent. Similar campaigns have happened before, and the national media dismissed each at the time as insignificant. Democrats today would be wise to take Trump seriously. He won’t ever become President, but his impact on conservative America could run much deeper." 08-15

  82. -09-03-15 Clerk Jailed for Failing to Issue Wedding License (New York Times)
      "A federal judge here on Thursday ordered a defiant county clerk jailed for contempt because of her refusal to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples based on her religious beliefs, despite a Supreme Court ruling against her." 09-15

  83. -09-08-15 Editorial: Was Clerk Davis's Denying Marriage Licenses Patriotic? (Time.com)
      "There are about 35 major Christian denominations in the U.S. Various denominations don’t always agree with each other on what the proper moral action is in the same situation. Then we add in all the other religions and belief systems in our country—all protected by the Constitution—and we see why we don’t go to any one religion to decide what should be legal. The Orthodox Jewish clerk at the DMV cannot deny you a driver’s license because you eat ham. The Muslim clerk at the Social Security office can’t deny you benefits because you drink liquor. The Christian Scientist clerk at the IRS cannot audit your taxes because you chose medical help. Practice your religion in freedom; just don’t make everyone else practice your religion."

      "When politicians support Davis in defying the U.S. Supreme Court, they are making it clear why they should never be elected to any office, let alone the Presidency of the United States where they would take the oath to 'support and defend the Constitution' since they are emphatically telling America that they wouldn’t support and defend it. They have announced that if you sincerely disagree with the Constitution, feel free to ignore it. And not just ignore it, make sure to use your position so that others are barred from following it."

      "...Davis and her followers are not supporting the constitutional principles of the country, they are actually arguing against the most important ideals that are the foundation of the country: to not establish a state religion by letting government actions be determined by one religion." 09-15

  84. -09-11-14 Obama Pledges to Destroy ISIS (ABC news)
      "In an address to the nation Wednesday, President Obama laid out his most detailed plan yet to 'lead a broad coalition' to confront the vexing problem of ISIS, the militant group that executed American journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff in Syria and terrorized civilians in Syria and neighboring Iraq." 09-14

  85. -09-18-14 Kansas Court Ruling May Influence Control of the U.S. Senate (Time.com)
      "The Kansas Supreme Court has ordered the state to remove U.S. Senate Democratic nominee Chad Taylor’s name from the ballot, in a ruling that could influence the national fight for control of the Senate." 09-14

  86. -09-23-15 The Pope's Speech at the White House (Time.com)
      "Pope Francis spoke at a welcoming ceremony for his U.S. visit at the South Lawn of the White House Wednesday before a crowd of 15,000." 09-15

  87. -09-24-15 The Pope's Speech to Congress (Time.com)
      "Pope Francis addressed a joint meeting of Congress in a historic speech Thursday morning." 09-15

  88. -09-25-14 Eric Holder Resigns as Attorney General (Time.com)
      "The White House is already working with a narrow list of possible successors to outgoing Attorney General Eric Holder, Democratic sources familiar with the selection process tell TIME." 09-14

  89. -09-25-15 House Speaker John Boehner Resigns (Washington Post)
      Speaker of the House, John Boehner, announced that he would resign in October.

      "The shocking move, first reported by The New York Times, means there’s unlikely to be a government shutdown next week. Following Boehner’s announcement, House Republicans said there was agreement to pass a clean spending bill to keep the government open." 09-15

  90. -09-25-15 The Pope's Speech to the United Nations (Time.com)
      "Pope Francis, the Vatican leader, rules over an institution that represents 1.25 billion through a power structure, adorned with pomp and focused on a single authority, that recalls the great European monarchies of old."

      "But when he came to the United Nations Friday, he spoke instead of limiting the power of global elites, eroding divisions between nationalities and creeds, and building up basic rights of all people to create a “universal fraternity” of men and women around the world." 09-15

  91. -09-26-15 The Hardline Republicans Who Pressured Boehner to Resign (FiveThirtyEight.com)
      "The Freedom Caucus doesn’t have a website or official roster. Roll Call listed 38 members in July, including 15 of the 25 representatives who voted against Boehner in the speaker’s election in January." 09-15

  92. -09-28-15 States Find No Wrongdoing of Planned Parenthood (MSNBC)
      "Missouri became the sixth state to investigate Planned Parenthood and find no wrongdoing — just as the organization’s president prepares to testify before a House committee Tuesday for the first time since an anti-abortion group released secretly recorded videos accusing the group of illegally profiting from fetal tissue." 09-15

  93. -09-30-15 NATO Concerned that Russia Struck Syrian Rebels (Huffington Post)
      "Russia launched air strikes in Syria on Wednesday in the Kremlin's biggest Middle East intervention in decades, but Moscow's assertion that it had hit Islamic State militants was disputed by the United States and Western-backed rebels on the ground."

      "While Russia says its raids targeted Islamic State, locals in the targeted area of Homs say the jihadist group has no presence in the region, echoing the assessment of a U.S. official and British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights." 09-15

  94. -10-01-15 Hillary Clinton Breaks With President Obama on Syria (MSNBC News)
      " 'I personally would be advocating now for a no-fly zone and humanitarian corridors to try to stop the carnage on the ground and from the air, to try to provide some way to take stock of what’s happening, to try to stem the flow of refugees,' Clinton said in an interview with NBC affiliate WHDH in Boston after a campaign event nearby."

      "U.S. officials confirmed Wednesday that Russian planes had started bombing anti-Assad forces in Syria, but that they did not appear to be targeting Islamic State forces as promised. 'I think Putin is playing a very dangerous and cynical game. He’s clearly doing everything he can to prop up Assad and to establish sort of a Russian presence in Syria and the broader Middle East,” Clinton added.' " 10-15

  95. -10-01-15 Obama: Our Thoughts and Prayers Are Not Enough (CBS News)
      "President Obama was visibly frustrated when he spoke about a shooting at a community college in Oregon Thursday, saying, 'our thoughts and prayers are not enough.' " 10-15

  96. -10-02-15 Jeb Bush: "Stuff Happens" (Time.com)
      "Presidential candidate Jeb Bush’s comment that 'stuff happens' in response to a question about how Americans can prevent crises like mass shootings on Friday sparked furious outcry on social media and even elicited a response from President Obama—but Bush says his words in the wake of an Oregon school shooting were taken out of context." 10-15

  97. -10-03-14 Unemployment Below 6 Percent (Time.com)
      "U.S. job growth jumped back above the 200,000 mark in September, suggesting the weak employment reading in August was a blip and the labor market continues to make steady progress." 10-14

  98. -10-07-14 Supreme Court Allows Same-Sex Marriage Laws to Stand (CBS News)
      "The Supreme Court on Monday turned away seven same-sex marriage cases in five states, refusing for now to take up the basic question of whether same-sex couples have a right to marriage."

      "While the decision is a setback for the gay rights movement's goal of achieving marriage equality nationwide, it does allow the lower court rulings in those five states to stand -- all in favor of marriage equality." 10-14

  99. -10-07-15 Clinton Opposes Trans-Pacific Partnership Trade Deal (Grist.org)
      "Hillary Clinton said Wednesday she opposes the 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership, marking a significant break with the Obama Administration as she heads into the first Democratic presidential debate." 10-15

  100. -10-08-15 Leading Prospect for Speaker of the House Drops Bid (MSNBC News)
      "Republican Rep. Kevin McCarthy pulled out of the race for House speaker Thursday – throwing the contest for Speaker John Boehner’s job into chaos."

      Editor's Note: Speake of the House is third in line for President of the United States if the current President and Vice President are unable to serve. 10-15

  101. -10-22-15 Paul Ryan Will Run for Speaker of the House (NBC News)
      "Rep. Paul Ryan informed House Republicans late Thursday that he would run for speaker after initially saying he does not want the job." 10-15

  102. -10-29-15 Paul Ryan Is the New Speaker of the House (PBS News)
      "Wisconsin Republican Paul Ryan became the 54th speaker of the House of Representatives today. He’s 45 years old, and was the party’s vice presidential nominee in 2012. Now he faces perhaps his biggest test yet." 10-15

  103. -11-26-14 Police and Body Cameras (Time.com)
      "For police, cameras have the potential to offer visual evidence of confrontations, which could provide a level of public transparency and potentially save law enforcement agencies millions of dollars in legal fees spent fighting and settling suits brought by citizens."

      "But only a few studies have been conducted on the effects body-worn cameras. The most frequently cited came out of the police department in Rialto, Calif., which found an 88% drop in the number of complaints filed against officers and a 60% decline in use of force incidents compared with the year before officers adopted cameras." 11-14

  104. -Supreme Court Rules in Favor of Independent Redistricting (SupremeCourt.gov)
      Provides the text of the Supreme Court rulling that independent commissions may be in charge of redistricting.

      "It would thus be perverse to interpret 'Legislature' in the Elections Clause to exclude lawmaking by the people, particularly when such lawmaking is intended to advance the prospect that Members of Congress will in fact be 'chosen . . . by the People of the several States,' Art. I, §2. Pp. 30–33.

      (4) Banning lawmaking by initiative to direct a State’s method of apportioning congressional districts would not just stymie attempts to curb gerrymandering. It would also cast doubt on numerous other time, place, and manner regulations governing federal elections that States have adopted by the initiative method. As well, it could endanger election provisions in state constitutions adopted by conventions and ratified by voters at the ballot box, without involvement or approval by 'the Legislature.' " 07-15

  105. Bond, Julian (New York Times)
      "Julian Bond, a charismatic figure of the 1960s civil rights movement, a lightning rod of the anti-Vietnam War campaign and a lifelong champion of equal rights, notably as chairman of the N.A.A.C.P., died on Saturday night in Fort Walton Beach, Fla. He was 75." 08-15

   
   


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