U.S. House approves 'proxy' voting during coronavirus pandemic

WASHINGTON, May 15 (Reuters) - The U.S. House of Representatives approved legislation on Friday allowing members to temporarily cast their votes by proxy, a historic shift as the U.S. Congress searches for ways to continue to function despite the coronavirus pandemic.

The vote in the Democratic-led chamber was 217-189. (Reporting by Richard Cowan; Editing by Sandra Maler)

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    Yahoo News

    Tragic video highlights systemic problem: Minneapolis police kill black people 13 times more than white people

    “I can't breathe” were some of the last words that a handcuffed George Floyd said as he was pinned on the ground, while a white Minneapolis police officer held a knee to his neck for several minutes on Monday. Floyd, a black man, is now dead. Now the four officers from the Minneapolis Police Department involved in the incident have been fired.

  • Calls in Congress for probe on how former Trump aide won $3 million respirator contract
    Yahoo News

    Calls in Congress for probe on how former Trump aide won $3 million respirator contract

    A leading Democrat on the House Oversight Committee asked an inspector general on Tuesday to investigate how a former deputy chief of staff to President Trump received a multimillion-dollar contract to deliver respirators to a Native American community hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic. The request by Rep. Gerry Connolly, D-Va., signals that Democrats intend to aggressively oversee how the Trump administration is disbursing the trillions of dollars allocated by Congress for coronavirus relief measures for individuals, corporations and small businesses. Connolly pressed Christi Grimm, principal deputy inspector general of the Department of Health and Human Services and the sole witness at the briefing, to begin looking into how the former White House aide, Zachary Fuentes, came to receive a $3 million contract despite lacking expertise in medical device procurement.

  • Anti-Semitic crime rises in Germany, most from far right
    Associated Press

    Anti-Semitic crime rises in Germany, most from far right

    Anti-Semitic crimes in Germany last year reached their highest level since the country started keeping statistics, amid an overall strong increase in right-extremist criminality that is a cause for “great concern,” Interior Minister Horst Seehofer said Wednesday. Overall, politically-motivated crimes were up 14.2% in 2019 over the previous year, which is the second highest level since authorities began tracking such crimes in 2001, Seehofer told reporters in Berlin. Crimes by the extreme left rose the most, increasing 23.7% to 9,849, but the majority of politically motivated crimes were from the extreme right, with 22,342 cases and an increase of 9.4%.

  • A new 'parking lot Karen' is going viral on TikTok for physically blocking someone's car from an open parking spot
    INSIDER

    A new 'parking lot Karen' is going viral on TikTok for physically blocking someone's car from an open parking spot

    The TikTok video shows a woman blocking a car from taking an open parking spot. A viral video from TikTok user @savsoares shows a woman physically blocking a car from moving in a parking lot while directing another car to take an open parking spot. The video has amassed over 4 million likes and 18 million views in the four days since it was posted, with both @savsoares and people in the comments calling the woman a "Karen."

  • Pakistani villager urges India to return 'spy' pigeon
    BBC

    Pakistani villager urges India to return 'spy' pigeon

    A Pakistani villager has urged Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to return his pigeon, currently being held in India on charges of spying. The Pakistani villager, who claims the arrested pigeon is his, says the code is actually his mobile phone number. Pakistan's Dawn newspaper has identified the man as Habibullah and reports that he owns a dozen pigeons.

  • Amphibious Ship Obliterates Drone with Laser Weapon in 1st-of-its-Kind Sea Test
    Military.com

    Amphibious Ship Obliterates Drone with Laser Weapon in 1st-of-its-Kind Sea Test

    A Navy ship recently turned its laser weapon system to the skies to take out a drone flying nearby as the service looks to counter aerial threats at sea. The amphibious transport dock ship Portland "successfully disabled an unmanned aerial vehicle" while it was in flight during a May 16 test at sea, the Navy announced in a news release. The Portland was equipped with the Solid State Laser Weapons System Demonstrator for the at-sea test.

  • Levi’s Is Taking 50% off These Best-Selling Jeans Right Now
    Popular Mechanics

    Levi’s Is Taking 50% off These Best-Selling Jeans Right Now

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    The Telegraph

    Philippine children have been traumatised by abusive drugs war, says Human Rights Watch probe

    Thousands of children in the Philippines have suffered lasting physical, emotional and economic harm from the brutal drugs war instigated by Rodrigo Duterte, the Philippine president, according to an investigation released by Human Rights Watch on Wednesday. The disturbing report, which documents the trauma of children whose parents or guardians have been violently killed, comes a few weeks before an expected decision the UN Human Rights Council to set up an independent international investigation into the Philippines' controversial counter-drugs operations. The spiraling death toll among alleged drug dealers and users since Mr Duterte rose to power in 2016 vowing to “feed the fish in Manila Bay” has caused international alarm.

  • U.S. to end sanctions waivers allowing some work at Iran nuclear sites
    Reuters

    U.S. to end sanctions waivers allowing some work at Iran nuclear sites

    The United States said on Wednesday it will terminate sanctions waivers that had allowed Russian, Chinese and European companies to continue work aimed at making at Iranian nuclear sites less prone to be used to develop weapons. The waivers, which will expire after 60 days, had covered the conversion of Iran's Arak heavy water research reactor, the provision of enriched uranium for its Tehran Research Reactor and the transfer of spent and scrap reactor fuel abroad. In a statement, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo did not justify his decision, which will halt some work designed to make it more difficult for Iran to potentially develop fissile material for nuclear bombs.

  • Elon Musk told NASA astronauts' kids ahead of the SpaceX launch, 'We've done everything we can to make sure your dads come back OK'
    Business Insider

    Elon Musk told NASA astronauts' kids ahead of the SpaceX launch, 'We've done everything we can to make sure your dads come back OK'

    Elon Musk appeared to choke up while discussing his responsibility for the lives of the two NASA astronauts that SpaceX is set to launch into space on Wednesday. Musk said he told the astronauts' families, "We've done everything we can to make sure your dads come back OK." Though the Falcon 9 rocket has undergone thousands of tests, NASA estimates there's a 1-in-276 chance that the flight could kill the astronauts on board.

  • US revokes Hong Kong special status as furor grows on China law
    AFP

    US revokes Hong Kong special status as furor grows on China law

    The United States on Wednesday revoked Hong Kong's special status under US law, opening the way to strip trading privileges for the financial hub as Washington accused China of trampling on the territory's autonomy. Hours before China's rubber-stamp parliament was set to take a key vote on a new Hong Kong security law that has sparked protests, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo certified to Congress that Hong Kong "does not continue to warrant treatment" under US laws that it has enjoyed even after its handover to China in 1997. Under a law passed last year to support Hong Kong's pro-democracy protesters, the US administration must certify that the territory still enjoys freedoms promised by Beijing when negotiating with Britain to take back the colony.

  • Trump on Twitter mocks Biden for wearing a face mask
    CBS News

    Trump on Twitter mocks Biden for wearing a face mask

    President Trump on Monday shared a tweet that appeared to make fun of Joe Biden for wearing a mask in public — a step recommended by the CDC to help reduce the spread of the coronavirus that the president has not followed. Mr. Trump retweeted a post from Fox News political analyst Brit Hume showing a picture of Biden, the presumptive Democratic nominee, wearing sunglasses and a black mask that covered much of his face at a Memorial Day ceremony. "This might help explain why Trump doesn't like to wear a mask in public," Hume wrote.

  • US priest who founded Knights of Columbus to be beatified
    Associated Press

    US priest who founded Knights of Columbus to be beatified

    The founder of the Knights of Columbus, the influential U.S.-based lay Catholic organization, is moving a step closer to possible sainthood. Pope Francis has approved a miracle attributed to the intercession of the Rev. Michael McGivney, a Connecticut priest who died at age 38 of pneumonia in 1890 during a pandemic similar to the current coronavirus outbreak. The Vatican said Wednesday that Francis had signed off on the miracle required.

  • Malka Leifer: Rape-accused ex-principal fit for extradition to Australia
    BBC

    Malka Leifer: Rape-accused ex-principal fit for extradition to Australia

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  • White woman calls NYPD after black man asks her to put dog on leash, sparking outrage online
    NBC News

    White woman calls NYPD after black man asks her to put dog on leash, sparking outrage online

    A video showing a white woman calling New York City police alleging that a black man was threatening her in Central Park after he asked her to put her dog on a leash has gone viral. Christian Cooper told NBC New York that he was bird watching in the park on Monday when he noticed a dog running free. The woman refused and Cooper began filming their interaction, which his sister later posted on Twitter.

  • Fauci wears a mask as a 'symbol' of what 'you should be doing' amid coronavirus pandemic
    USA TODAY

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  • McEnany defends Trump’s promoting 'Morning Joe' conspiracy theory
    Yahoo News Video

    McEnany defends Trump’s promoting 'Morning Joe' conspiracy theory

    White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany on Tuesday defended President Trump's promotion of a murder conspiracy theory about 'Morning Joe' host Joe Scarborough.

  • Head of Italy's Lombardy region given police escort as COVID anger mounts
    Reuters

    Head of Italy's Lombardy region given police escort as COVID anger mounts

    The governor of Lombardy, the northern region at the epicentre of Italy's coronavirus outbreak, said on Wednesday that he had been given a police escort after growing criticism of his administration's handling of the crisis. Lombardy, Italy's richest and most populous region and the motor of its economy, is one of the worst affected areas of the world by the coronavirus, accounting for around half of the country's more than 32,000 dead. The regional government, controlled by opposition leader Matteo Salvini's anti-immigrant League party, has seen approval ratings plunge amid angry attacks on its response and on health sector reforms by previous League governments that many say left the region badly prepared to face the epidemic.

  • A Eurowings plane with just 2 passengers on board was forced to turn around after learning its destination airport was closed due to coronavirus
    Business Insider

    A Eurowings plane with just 2 passengers on board was forced to turn around after learning its destination airport was closed due to coronavirus

    A Eurowings flight from Düsseldorf, Germany, to Sardinia, Italy, was forced to turn around at the last minute because the destination airport was closed due to coronavirus lockdowns in Italy. The plane made it all the way to Sardinian airspace on Saturday when they were told that the airport was closed to commercial traffic. An aviation blog theorized that the mistake was made because the airport was ordered to reopen earlier this month, but that decision was immediately overruled by the local government.

  • Russia Sends Advanced Fighter Jets to Back Mercenaries in Libya
    Military.com

    Russia Sends Advanced Fighter Jets to Back Mercenaries in Libya

    Russia has sent advanced MiG-29 Fulcrum fighter aircraft to back its mercenaries in Libya's civil war, the head of U.S. Africa Command said Monday. The charge by Army Gen. Stephen Townsend, confirms allegations by Libya's Government of National Accord in Tripoli that Russia is doubling down on its support for a rebel group in what has turned into a proxy war involving U.S. allies on either side of the conflict. Read next: This Historic Colt 1911 Pistol Carried at Iwo Jima Is About to Go Up for Auction "Russia is clearly trying to tip the scales in its favor in Libya," Townsend said in a statement, which did not indicate any immediate plans for a U.S. counteraction.

  • U.S. no longer considers Hong Kong autonomous from China, Pompeo announces
    The Week

    U.S. no longer considers Hong Kong autonomous from China, Pompeo announces

    The U.S. State Department has determined Hong Kong no longer holds autonomy under Chinese rule, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced Wednesday. "No reasonable person can assert today that Hong Kong maintains a high degree of autonomy from China, given facts on the ground," Pompeo said in a Wednesday statement. Pompeo informed Congress of the department's decision on Tuesday, and there's a strong chance the move will change Hong Kong's trade relationship with the U.S., CNBC reports.

  • Trump opposition throws surveillance legislation in doubt
    Associated Press

    Trump opposition throws surveillance legislation in doubt

    House legislation extending surveillance authorities that the FBI sees as vital in fighting terrorism was thrown into doubt Wednesday as President Donald Trump threatened a veto and Republican leaders and top liberal Democrats said they would oppose it. Ahead of a House vote scheduled for Wednesday evening, Trump said explicitly for the first time that he would veto the measure. A similar version of the legislation had drawn bipartisan support just weeks ago.

  • Huawei CFO Meng to find out if a U.S extradition case against her will proceed
    Yahoo News Video

    Huawei CFO Meng to find out if a U.S extradition case against her will proceed

    A top executive of Chinese tech giant Huawei is scheduled to learn Wednesday if a U.S extradition case against her can proceed. Canada arrested Meng Wanzhou, the daughter of Huawei's founder, at Vancouver's airport in late 2018. The U.S. wants her extradited to face fraud charges.

  • Arbery case exemplifies how 'stand your ground' is a right, hate crime laws are hypothetical
    NBC News

    Arbery case exemplifies how 'stand your ground' is a right, hate crime laws are hypothetical

    A huge disparity When white Americans who live in a "stand your ground" state make self-defense claims in situations involving a black person's death, 36 percent are ruled justifiable homicides, Robert Spitzer, a professor of political science at the State University of New York, Cortland, said. When the situation is reversed and black Americans make self-defense claims in cases involving dead white people in these same states, just 3 percent see those deaths ruled justifiable homicides. That's the pattern in more than a decade of data.

  • $11,000 in personal items stolen from doctor visiting New York to fight coronavirus, report says
    The Independent

    $11,000 in personal items stolen from doctor visiting New York to fight coronavirus, report says

    A Texas doctor who moved to New York temporarily to assist in the fight against coronavirus has had $11,000 worth of personal items stolen from her hotel room, according to a report. Police sources told The New York Post that a woman who was believed to be in her 20's reportedly broke into the unidentified doctor's room at the Brooklyn Hotel on Atlantic Avenue at around 9am on Saturday. According to the report, the suspect proceeded to steal around $11,000 worth of personal items from the room including jewelry and clothing.