By unanimous consent, the Senate approved legislation designating June 19, or Juneteenth, as a federal holiday to commemorate the end of slavery in the United States.Passage all but assured in the House »
The No. 3 Senate Republican, John Barrasso of Wyoming, told a group of voters that he wants to make President Joe Biden a "one-half-term president." "Mitch McConnell's come under a lot of criticism for saying, at one point, he wanted to make sure that Barack Obama was a one-term president," Barrasso said last Thursday at an event hosted by the Ripon Society, a centrist Republican think tank, which posted the remarks Tuesday. McConnell, R-Ky., the Senate minority leader, has vowed to block Biden's agenda and sharply criticized the administration's policies.
The Trump administration launched several separate investigations into the origins of the COVID-19 pandemic, and former President Donald Trump and other senior officials pressed hard for evidence the virus escaped from the Wuhan Institute of Virology, Politico and The Washington Post reported Tuesday. President Biden ordered a new 90-day review of the intelligence last month. On April 30, 2020, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence codified that view, saying in a statement the intelligence community "concurs with the wide scientific consensus that the COVID-19 virus was not manmade or genetically modified," and would continue working "to determine whether the outbreak began through contact with infected animals or if it was the result of an accident at a laboratory in Wuhan."
The intrigue: By naming Khan FTC chair just hours after the Senate confirmed her appointment as one of five commissioners at the agency, the White House took both the industry and many D.C. insiders by surprise. Khan, 32, is a Columbia Law professor known for her argument that Amazon's retail business should be separated from its selling platform and for advocating broad updates of antitrust law to deal with digital-age problems. "The difference between being a mere commissioner and being chair is the difference between going to the moon and going to Mars," said William Kovacic, former FTC chairman.
A rift between conservative American bishops and the Vatican could be laid bare on June 16 as the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops meets amid talk of a growing divide in the church over Pope Francis' leadership. During the virtual event, U.S. bishops are expected to approve a motion to begin drafting a document on “Eucharistic coherence” that would exclude Catholic political figures who support abortion rights from receiving Communion. If they do proceed, the bishops will have opened a breach with Pope Francis and the Vatican, which has all but instructed the bishops not to go ahead with the motion.
Protesters and human rights officials urged lawmakers in Hungary on Monday to reject legislation banning any content portraying or promoting homosexuality or sex reassignment to anyone under 18. Thousands of LGBT activists and others demonstrated in front of the Parliament in Budapest in the evening, chanting “we are here!” as they urged lawmakers to abandon plans for the bills. “We have a lot to do before tomorrow's vote: We have to tell, we have to write to every member of Parliament, why this bill is anti-child, anti-family and anti-human,” David Vig, director of Hungary's branch of Amnesty International, told those gathered.
Israeli airstrikes hit Hamas targets in Gaza early Wednesday morning, with the military saying this was in response to incendiary balloons crossing over from Hamas-controlled territory into Israel. The Israel Defense Forces said in a statement that the Hamas compounds were used by members planning attacks, and the militant group is "responsible for all events transpiring in the Gaza Strip, and will bear the consequences for its actions." Additionally, the Israeli military is "prepared for any scenario, including a resumption of hostilities."
A supermarket cashier in the U.S. state of Georgia was shot and killed by a customer on Monday in a dispute over the wearing of a face mask before the gunman was wounded in an exchange of gunfire with the store's security guard, the local sheriff said. The guard was also wounded in the incident which occurred at a little after 1 p.m. at the Big Bear Supermarket in DeKalb County, DeKalb County Sheriff Melody Maddox told a news conference. "The wearing of the mask and not wearing of the mask, people have their own opinion about it and it is very sensitive at this time."
I had the rare opportunity to watch Vladimir Putin in action during my four-year stint serving as a senior communications aide to former Secretary of State John Kerry. Why it matters: From his timing to his baiting techniques and his postgame spin, Russia's president commands an array of tactics aimed at putting U.S. leaders on the defensive and in response mode — and has decades of experience fine-tuning them. President Biden's arrival may be the last thing he fully controls when he and Putin meet Wednesday for their summit in Geneva.
A spokesperson for Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte says the leader will not cooperate with a probe by the International Criminal Court into the thousands of alleged extra-judicial killings in his country, all part of its bloody war on drugs. The ICC's chief prosecutor asked the court on Monday (June 14) to open the case, which she has previously said could uncover crimes against humanity, and referred to a series of Reuters investigations in her preliminary findings. On Tuesday (June 15), families of some of the dead cheered the court's move.
Benjamin Netanyahu's 12-year tenure as Israel's prime minister ended Sunday, and giving up the prime minister's seat proved challenging, literally and figuratively. Israel's Channel 12 reported Monday that Netanyahu's office told new Prime Minister Naftali Bennett he will not vacate the official prime minister's residence for several more weeks, at least. Bennett, who plans to continue living at his home in Ra'anana for the foreseeable future, was reportedly indifferent to the news, but plenty of Israelis are irritated, especially after Netanyahu was photographed hosting foreign dignitaries at the official Balfour Street residence Monday night.
Tevin Biles-Thomas, the brother of Olympic gymnast Simone Biles, was acquitted Tuesday of triple murder following a 2018 shooting in Cleveland. Seconds after Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Judge Joan Synenberg cleared Biles-Thomas of his charges, the courtroom erupted in chaos as a woman charged at the man on trial. The woman, identified by WKYC as the mother of one of the victims, was grabbed by several deputies as she got close to Biles-Thomas.
GENEVA/MOSCOW (Reuters) -Don't expect a major breakthrough at a summit on Wednesday between U.S. President Joe Biden and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin, a U.S. official said on Tuesday, given relations between Washington and Moscow are their most strained in years. The two leaders are expected to talk for four of five hours, the U.S. official said. Both leaders say they hope the Geneva meeting, their first in-person encounter since Biden became president in January, can lead to stable and predictable relations, even though they remain at odds over everything from Syria to Ukraine.
A boat explosion on Missouri's Lake of the Ozarks left six people, including three children, injured, authorities said Tuesday. The explosion occurred about 1:40 p.m. CT on a 26-foot boat that was docked in the Osage Arm of the lake, according to a Missouri State Highway Patrol report. Investigators said a mechanical problem on the 2007 Sea Ray Sun Deck boat caused a "fuel-related fire."
China's government issued a warning to "foreign forces" after Taiwan reported a record 28 Chinese military planes flew over the self-governed island's airspace Tuesday, per Reuters. Why it matters: The warning and deployment of aircraft including fighter jets and bombers comes after G7 leaders issued a statement Sunday urging the Chinese government to respect human rights and calling on peace and "stability across the Taiwan Strait." What they're saying: "We will never tolerate attempts to seek independence or wanton intervention in the Taiwan issue by foreign forces, so we need to make a strong response to these acts of collusion," said Chinese government spokesperson Ma Xiaoguang, accordin...
When President Joe Biden meets Russian President Vladimir Putin on June 16, their most hotly contested issue may be Ukraine. Will the United States and its NATO allies decide to defend the country of 41 million from further Russian encroachments by making it the 31st member of NATO? For Mr. Putin, such action would cross a “red line.”
The House passed a bill Tuesday to award Congressional Gold Medals to honor the Capitol Police officers and others who protected the U.S. Capitol during a pro-Trump riot Jan. 6 by a vote of 406-21. "The desecration of the U.S. Capitol, which is the temple of our American Democracy, and the violence targeting Congress are horrors that will forever stain our Nation's history," the legislation says. The bill would provide for four gold medals in honor of the first responders — one for the Capitol Police, one for the Washington, D.C., Metropolitan Police, one for the Smithsonian Institution and one for the Architect of the Capitol.
Consumers kept their cash and cards in their pockets last year, as lockdowns cut the number of payments made for the first time in six years, banks say. More than eight out of 10 payments by consumers are spontaneous but options were limited by the Covid crisis. The total number of payments was down on the previous year, but when people did spend money they were increasingly likely to use contactless technology.
Hundreds of thousands of Americans have sought medical care for post-COVID health problems that they had not been diagnosed with before becoming infected with the coronavirus, according to the largest study to date of long-term symptoms in COVID-19 patients. The study, tracking the health insurance records of nearly 2 million people in the United States who contracted the coronavirus last year, found that one month or more after their infection, almost one-quarter — 23% — of them sought medical treatment for new conditions. Other issues included intestinal symptoms; migraines; skin problems; heart abnormalities; sleep disorders; and mental health conditions like anxiety and depression.
Top Republicans are moving to block a Senate inquiry into the Trump justice department's secret seizure of data from Democrats to hunt down leaks of classified information, fearing a close investigation could damage the former president. Trump, who is facing a mounting crisis of legal problems and political criticism, still wields huge power among Republicans, and has hinted recently at a return run for the White House. In fiery remarks, the Republican Senate minority leader, Mitch McConnell, criticized the rapidly expanding congressional inquiries as unnecessary and accused Democrats of embarking on “politically motivated investigations”.
Ethiopia is due to hold elections on 21 June despite a bloody conflict and looming famine in the north and escalating tensions among its biggest ethnic groups. Why is the election such a big deal? This is the first electoral test for Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed since he took office on a pledge to end repression, although there are already concerns about the integrity of the poll.
It is also good to remember that in addition to our Western allies of Great Britain, France and Poland, Soviet Marshal Georgy Zhukov and the men and women of the Red Army, Navy and Air Forces launched simultaneous, massive attacks against the Nazis' Eastern Front to prevent them from reinforcing Normandy. A few weeks ago, The Star published an editorial that discussed the purported divide in Kansas City for the areas north and south of the Missouri River.
CNN correspondent Barbara Starr has branded the Trump-era Justice Department's past decision to seize her personal email and phone records, as well as those of other colleagues, a “sheer abuse of power”. In an op-ed penned for her outlet on Monday, Ms Starr accused the Trump administration of having manipulated both her and CNN when the DoJ secretly obtained her email records during a probe into news leaks. According to CNN, the DOJ informed Ms Starr on 13 May that prosecutors had procured her phone and email records dating from 1 June, 2017, to 31 July, 2017.
Audio transcripts were released in Seattle chapter leader Ethan Nordean's court filing. Proud Boys members squabbled in private conversations after the Capitol riot, according to newly-released audio transcripts in a group leader's court case. Ethan Nordean, a 30-year-old described as the "Sergeant of Arms" of the Proud Boys' Seattle chapter, was arrested in February and charged with obstructing or impeding an official proceeding, aiding and abetting, and knowingly entering a restricted building, according to the Associated Press.
When Commerce Tower at 911 Main St. opened in 1964, one of the modern office building's many amenities was the Top of the Tower restaurant on the 30th floor. Rather than a single dining experience, Top of the Tower offered diners five distinct experiences: the Mongolian-themed Genghis Khan, the Irish-themed Paddy's Pub, the Italian-themed Guiseppe's Roof, the German-themed Salzberg Haus, and the French-themed Tour d'Argent. An advertisement from the building's opening promised diners “an unparalleled view of Kansas City's surging skyline and the countryside beyond,” and with the 180-degree view south toward the river made possible by the small projection, the statement rang true.
“It may seem desperate at this point, but I can’t be mad at any and all efforts to get people vaccinated.”
“I won’t get rich, but I will get to live my life. That seems like reward enough.”
“Offering incentives may encourage people who are not actively opposed to vaccination but may have put it off.”
“At some point, the government is simply rewarding irresponsible behavior.”
“Sure, people should do it without needing an incentive. But what’s the alternative? Not enough people get vaccinated.”