A U.S. federal judge in Texas ruled on Friday that the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare, is unconstitutional, a decision that was likely to be appealed to the Supreme Court. U.S. District Judge Reed O'Connor in Fort Worth agreed with a coalition of 20 states that a change in tax law last year eliminating a penalty for not having health insurance invalidated the entire Obamacare law. The coalition of states challenging the law was led by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton and Wisconsin Attorney General Brad Schimel, both Republicans.
The Texas judge who approved a plea deal allowing a former Baylor University student accused of rape to avoid jail time holds three degrees from Baylor. The prosecutor who agreed to the plea agreement graduated from Baylor law school. Local leaders say those connections to the world's largest Baptist university cast doubt on the handling of the criminal case against ex-Phi Delta Theta president Jacob Walter Anderson, who was accused of repeatedly raping a woman outside a 2016 fraternity party.
Benjamin Netanyahu’s coalition is looking increasingly unstable after far-Right MPs threatened to withdraw their support unless the Israeli prime minister agrees to new security measures amid a spate of violence in the occupied West Bank. In one of the bloodiest weeks in the territories this year, two Israeli soldiers were killed along with a three-day Israeli baby, who was born by emergency Caesarian after his mother was shot by Palestinian gunmen but died in hospital. The Israeli military said it killed two Palestinian gunmen as well as an attacker who stabbed two policemen in Jerusalem.
The incoming chairman of the House Intelligence Committee joined Democratic colleagues in questioning ties between Deutsche Bank AG and President Donald Trump’s real estate business. Representative Adam Schiff of California said on NBC’s “Meet the Press” Sunday that any type of compromise needs to be investigated. That could add his panel’s scrutiny to that of Representative Maxine Waters, who’s in line to be chair of the House Financial Services Committee and has also focused on the bank’s connections to Trump.
As students embark on winter break, last-minute shoppers head to the stores and holiday travel ramps up across the country later this week, a major storm could lead to widespread travel headaches in the eastern U.S. The potential exists for a storm system to track from the Gulf Coast through the Northeast at the end of the week, according to AccuWeather Meteorologist Maura Kelly. This storm is expected to soak the southeastern U.S. Thursday into Friday before heading northward, bringing rounds of heavy rain to the Northeast and some wintry weather to the Midwest late this week and into the weekend.
Task and Purpose, Jared Keller Security, Here's all we know. Despite a brief period of ambiguity wrought by budget-jousting among lawmakers in Congress, the Army’s new and improved sniper rifle is alive and well. Heckler & Koch showed off its M110A1 7.62mm semi-automatic sniper rifle, selected for the Army’s Compact Semi-Automatic Sniper System (CSASS) program on the floor of the Association of the U.S. Army’s annual conference and exposition in Washington this week, a first up-close-and-personal look at the lightweight rifle.
British trade minister Liam Fox said on Sunday talks with the European Union to secure "assurances" for parliament on Prime Minister Theresa May's Brexit deal will take time, with a decision expected in the New Year. quot;The prime minister is giving an update tomorrow, she will be talking to the cabinet on Tuesday, it is very clear that the EU understand what the problem is. And it's a question now, without unpicking the whole of the withdrawal agreement, can we find a mechanism of operating the backstop in a way that actually removes those anxieties," he told the BBC's Andrew Marr show.
The Palestinian leadership on Saturday described as "irresponsible" Australia's recognition of west Jerusalem as Israel's capital, saying it violated international law. The country became one of just a few to follow US President Donald Trump's lead and recognise the contested city as Israel's capital, saying. Australia said it would open a defence and trade office in the west of the holy city and Prime Minister Scott Morrison also committed to recognising a future state of Palestine with east Jerusalem as its capital.
Full military honors will be given to a Louisiana sailor whose remains have been identified more than 75 years after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. The remains of Navy Seaman 2nd Class Charles C. Gomez Jr., of Slidell, were accounted for Sept. 19, the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency announced Friday. Gomez was assigned to the USS Oklahoma battleship on Dec. 7, 1941 when Japanese aircraft attacked it at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor.
Reed O’Connor, appointed to the federal bench by President George W. Bush, ruled against Barack Obama’s signature health-care law three times, dealing the most serious blow Friday when he declared the entire law unconstitutional and cast uncertainty on insurance coverage for millions of Americans. While the ruling is sure to be appealed all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, it’s a remarkable victory for conservatives who fared poorly in other court challenges to the Affordable Care Act and were further frustrated in 2017 when a Republican-led Congress and President Donald Trump couldn’t muster the votes to abolish Obamacare.
Developed alongside the Porsche Taycan, Audi's sleek electric coupe is still a long way from reality. From Car and Driver
Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) thinks more information is needed before she can speak definitively on President Donald Trump’s mounting legal troubles. On CNN’s “State of the Union” Sunday, host Jake Tapper asked Collins what she thought of allegations that Trump personally directed his former lawyer Michael Cohen to distribute hush money payments to two women to help protect his bid for the presidency. “We need to wait until we have the entire picture,” Collins responded.
A 120-year-old Chicago church was saved from auction after a midnight call from a group of donors, which one church official said was "a Christmas miracle." Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church held what parishioners believed would be its final service on Thursday. The church was slated to go to auction Friday after facing legal issues and about $8 million in debt when a bank foreclosed on the property.
Storm Deirdre caused travel hazards, power outages and disruptions this weekend across the United Kingdom. Winds have gusted over 70 mph (110 km/h) at Pembrey Sands in southern Wales. "Leeds and Bradford endured an extended period of freezing rain from the midday to the afternoon hours of Saturday," AccuWeather Meteorologist Kristina Pydynowski said.
While a few government buildings and statues of President Assad remain, Qamishli and the surrounding areas are now firmly under the control of the Democratic Union Party (PYD). Mahmoud is a proud supporter of the PYD, but still he declines to give his full name to the Telegraph for fear of reprisal should the regime one day return. Assad has repeatedly promised to retake every inch of Syria, including the third currently in Kurdish hands.
President says former lawyer is lying.
Ottawa's ambassador to Beijing has met with the second Canadian detained in China on suspicion of threatening national security, Canada's foreign ministry said Sunday. The ministry said Ambassador John McCallum had met with Michael Spavor, a business consultant, two days after meeting with another detained Canadian, Michael Kovrig, a think tank employee. "Canadian consular officials continue to provide consular services to him and his family and will continue to seek further access to Mr Spavor," the ministry said.
Jurors found Denise Williams guilty of three counts including first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder for her role in a case that has recalled the plot of the Hollywood film classic "Double Indemnity." The 48-year-old Williams was found guilty after testimony by a key witness, the man who shot her husband Mike Williams on a cold December morning on a large lake west of Tallahassee. Denise Williams, who could spend the rest of her life in prison, is to be sentenced at an unspecified date next year. Mike Williams disappeared nearly 18 years ago to the date of his wife's conviction.
The conference would be rescheduled to Jan. 4-5 from this weekend to accommodate the North West province, which hadn’t submitted its nominations, ANC acting spokesman Dakota Legeote said by phone. The conference had been delayed because of deep divisions within the party and allegations by some members of manipulation of the lists, City Press reported on Sunday. South Africa is due to hold national and provincial elections in 2019, likely in May. The country has a proportional representation system in which lawmakers are chosen according to where they sit on nomination lists.
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Twitter users have castigated President Donald Trump after he rejoiced at the forthcoming closure of The Weekly Standard. “The pathetic and dishonest Weekly Standard, run by failed prognosticator Bill Kristol (who, like many others, never had a clue), is flat broke and out of business,” Trump tweeted Saturday. The pathetic and dishonest Weekly Standard, run by failed prognosticator Bill Kristol (who, like many others, never had a clue), is flat broke and out of business.
Iraqis on Sunday laid the cornerstone in rebuilding Mosul's Al-Nuri mosque and leaning minaret, national emblems destroyed last year in the ferocious battle against the Islamic State group. The famed 12th century mosque and minaret, dubbed Al-Hadba or "the hunchback," hosted Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi's only public appearance as IS chief, when he declared a self-styled "caliphate" after the jihadists swept into Mosul in 2014. The structures were ravaged three years later in the final, most brutal stages of the months-long fight to rid Iraq's second city of IS.
A man who illegally demolished a San Francisco house designed by modernist architect Richard Neutra was ordered this week to rebuild it exactly as it was. The city Planning Commission also ordered Ross Johnston to add a sidewalk plaque telling the entire saga of the house's origins in the 1930s, its demolition and replication. A call and email message seeking comments from Johnston's lawyer has not been returned.
The strike, against local Taliban commander Sharif Mawiya, was the latest in a series targeting senior insurgents, including the shadow governor of the strategic southern province of Helmand, who was killed on Dec. 2. Several Taliban military commanders have been killed this month by Afghan forces, backed by U.S. advisers and air power. The tactic has raised the risk of civilian casualties and Abdul Latif Fazly, a member of the provincial council, said eight women and 12 children were killed and more than 15 others wounded in Friday's airstrike.
Cash deposited in Robinhood's new checking and savings product that was rolled out this week by the fintech investing platform is not insured by the Securities Investor Protection Corp., the nonprofit membership corporation said Friday. Robinhood made headlines on Thursday when it announced that the new products can earn 3 percent, much better than what traditional banks offer on checking and savings accounts. Robinhood's checking and savings products are not traditional bank accounts.