House Passes Democrats’ Social Spending Bill After Congressional Budget Office Score

Kevin McCarthy and Nancy Pelosi

Congressional Democrats passed a $1.75 trillion social spending plan Friday, putting the bill’s fate in the hands of a deeply divided Senate.

The bill funds universal pre-kindergarten, climate change spending, Obamacare subsidies, an extension of the monthly child tax credit payment and more wide ranging spending items. House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy spoke more than eight hours on the House floor overnight to delay the vote until Friday morning, but afterward it passed 220-213 along party lines with one Democrat opposed.

“We are very excited for what it does for the children, for the families,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said in a press conference after the bill’s passage.

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Proposed Law Would End Ohio Sales Tax on Guns, Ammunition, Knives

Sales tax would no longer be collected on guns, ammunition and knives in Ohio if a bill planned for introduction in the state House of Representatives becomes law.

State GOP Rep. Al Cutrona recently announced he will introduce legislation that would exempt those items from sales tax, saying the move would help make gun, ammunition and knife retailers and manufacturers more competitive with neighboring states.

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Stauber Resolution Condemns Biden’s ‘Weaponization’ of Federal Agencies Against Parents

Twenty-five House members have introduced a resolution to support the free-speech rights of concerned parents speaking at school board meetings nationwide.

The chief proponent of the resolution is Rep. Pete Stauber of Minnesota. Its stated purpose is to “express the sense of the House of Representatives that the First Amendment rights of parents at school board meetings shall not be infringed.”

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Report: Coal Subsidies Bad for Ohio Taxpayers

A group of Ohio economists believes government subsidies for coal power plants create distortions in the market, eliminates competition and does not produce positive results, according to a new survey from Scioto Analysis.

State leaders continue to pick apart House Bill 6, the scandal-ridden energy bill passed two years ago that produced billions of dollars for two state nuclear power plants but also included subsidies for coal plants and renewable energy producers. It also led to what federal prosecutors call the largest government corruption scandal in state history and the ouster of indicted former Speaker of the House Larry Householder.

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Senate, House Pass Michigan Opportunity Scholarship Bills

In what was characterized as a blow against the state constitution’s Blaine amendments, members of the House and Senate on Tuesday passed a slate of bills aimed at providing opportunity scholarships for Michigan students.

Senate Bills 687 and 688 and House Bills 5404 and 5405 all passed mainly along party lines, with Republicans supporting the legislation and Democrats in opposition. Each chamber’s respective education committees moved the bills forward earlier in the day.

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Tennessee Approves $884M in Funding, Creates Board for $6B Ford Project

The Tennessee Legislature finished its special session on Ford’s $5.6 billion electric truck project Wednesday by approving $884 million in spending and creating a Megasite Authority of West Tennessee board to oversee operations.

“This is the largest single economic investment in rural Tennessee’s history,” Gov. Bill Lee said. “… It is, most importantly, a win for western Tennessee’s workforce.”

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New Capitol Video Contradicts Justice Department, Media Narrative on January 6

Over the objection of Joe Biden’s Justice Department, a lengthy video clip showing U.S. Capitol Police allowing hundreds of people into the building on the afternoon of January 6 has been released to the public.

In July, Ethan Nordean, an alleged Proud Boy member charged for various crimes now held in a Seattle jail awaiting trial, petitioned the court to remove the “highly sensitive” designation on surveillance video that recorded Nordean entering the building with permission by U.S. Capitol Police. A group called the Press Coalition, representing news organizations including CNN, the New York Times, and the three major broadcast news networks, filed a motion in September to intervene in Nordean’s case and make the video footage public.

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House Approves Debt Ceiling Increase, Temporarily Delaying Nationwide Default

The House on Tuesday voted to lift the debt ceiling by $480 billion, temporarily averting widespread economic calamity after weeks of partisan gridlock and sending the bill to President Joe Biden’s desk.

The House briefly interrupted its weeklong recess to pass a rule governing debate for three separate bills to which the ceiling raise was attached. It passed on a party-line vote given Republicans continuing opposition to lifting the ceiling.

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Commentary: The Left Destroys Everything It Touches

What was the purpose for the insane opposition of the Left between 2017 and 2021? To usher in a planned nihilism, an incompetent chaos, a honed anarchy to wreck the country in less than a year?

No sooner had Donald Trump entered office than scores of House Democrats filed motions for impeachment, apparently for thought crimes that he might, some day, in theory, could possibly commit.

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Conservative Tech Groups Slam Ex-Intelligence Officials for Defending Monopolies, Urge Passage of Antitrust Bills

Two conservative tech advocacy groups sent a letter to House lawmakers criticizing former national security officials for attempting to prevent the passage of antitrust bills targeting Big Tech.

The letter, sent by the Internet Accountability Project (IAP) and the American Principles Project (APP) to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy along with lawmakers responsible for overseeing antitrust legislation, urged Congress to pass six bills targeting major tech companies advanced beyond the House Judiciary Committee in June. The letter also criticized twelve former intelligence officials who sent a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy arguing against the passage of antitrust bills in mid-September.

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Commentary: After Disastrous September and 2022 Midterms Looming, Biden May Have Lost His Mandate to Govern

Following a catastrophic U.S. military withdrawal from Afghanistan, the highest inflation since 2008,pushing unpopular COVID vaccine mandates, rationing COVID treatments to red states and finally, watching his domestic legislative agenda falter in Congress, President Joe Biden is already upside down on his job approval ratings, according to the latest average of polls compiled by RealClearPolitics.com.

Reuters/Ipsos on Sept. 29-30 had Biden’s approval at 46 percent and disapproval at 50 percent.

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After Meeting with House Democrats About Economic Agenda, Biden Declares ‘We’re Gonna Get This Done’

President Joe Biden told reporters Friday that he was in no rush to see his bipartisan infrastructure bill and budget pass Congress as Democratic divisions over the two slow their path to becoming law.

“We’re gonna get this done,” Biden said after meeting with the House Democratic caucus on Capitol Hill Friday. “It doesn’t matter when. It doesn’t matter whether it’s six minutes, six days or six weeks. We’re gonna get it done.”

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House Passes Funding Bill, Clearing the Way to Keep Government Open

A short-term funding bill is set to land on President Joe Biden’s desk after it was overwhelmingly approved in the House Thursday afternoon.

The continuing resolution, which funds the federal government through Dec. 3, passed the House on a 254-175 bipartisan vote less than two hours after it cleared the Senate. Biden plans to sign the bill later Thursday, avoiding a devastating government shutdown.

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Third Lawsuit Filed to Stop Ohio’s New Legislative District Map

Two more lawsuits have been filed with the Ohio Supreme Court challenging Republican drawn legislative district maps, claiming they are unconstitutional and gerrymandered.

The most-recent challenge came Monday from the Ohio chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations and was filed by the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University Law and the law firm Reed Smith.

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Commentary: Two Unique, Powerful Forces Will Influence the Midterms

If the 2022 midterm elections had an official soundtrack, it would be the ominous music from the 1975 movie “Jaws.”

Although the election is 13 months away, mounting intensity feels like great white sharks are circling our national boat with a convergence of two powerful, never-before-seen political forces. Both forces are hangovers from the 2020 election with the potential to make the 2022 midterms the most tumultuous in modern American history.

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Group of State Attorneys General Urge Passage of House Bills Targeting Big Tech

Smartphone with display of social media apps

A bipartisan group of 32 state attorneys general sent a letter to leading lawmakers in the House and Senate on Monday urging the passage of a series of antitrust bills targeting major technology companies.

The letter, led by attorneys general Phil Weiser of Colorado, Douglas Peterson of Nebraska, Letitia James of New York, and Herbert H. Slatery III of Tennessee, was addressed to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. The attorneys general urged Congress to modernize federal antitrust laws and enhance consumer protections by passing a series of bills introduced in the House Judiciary Committee in June that target big tech companies.

“A comprehensive update of federal antitrust laws has not occurred in decades,” the attorneys general wrote. “The sponsors of these bills should be commended for working to ensure that federal antitrust laws remain robust and keep pace with that of modern markets.”

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Manchin Reportedly Calls on Democrats to Push Budget Back to 2022

Joe Manchin

Democratic West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin reportedly said in private that the “strategic pause” he has pushed for regarding his party’s budget should last through the end of the year.

Manchin’s remarks, first reported by Axios, would mean a sharp departure from Democrats’ long-stated goals, which include passing both the budget and the bipartisan infrastructure bills before the end of September.

His remarks align both with a Wall Street Journal op-ed he wrote earlier this month and recent comments he made calling for a “pause” on the budget as Congress addressed other priorities ranging from a messy Afghanistan withdrawal to multiple natural disasters.

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Democrats Introduce Another Voting Bill, But Odds of Becoming Law Are Slim

Tim Kaine and Amy Klobuchar

Senate Democrats are set to release their new, trimmed down voting bill, but despite unanimous support from their caucus it faces a steep climb to become law.

The bill, titled the Freedom to Vote Act, is Democrats’ response to a series of voting restrictions passed in Republican-controlled states across the country. But despite its framework, constructed around a compromise plan proposed by West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin, it must still clear a filibuster to pass the Senate, meaning at least 10 Republicans would have to sign on in support.

The legislation, introduced by Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar, drops some of the more contentious provisions included in the For the People Act, Democrats’ previous legislation that fell to a GOP filibuster in June. While the new bill would no longer restructure the Federal Election Commission and requires a nationwide voter ID standard, it includes automatic registration provisions and would make Election Day a national holiday.

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Airbnb Offers Free Temporary Housing Across the World to 20,000 Afghan Refugees

Airbnb, a vacation home rental site, is offering free temporary housing to around 20,000 Afghan refugees across the world, the company announced Tuesday.

“As tens of thousands of Afghan refugees resettle around the world, where they stay will be the first chapter in their new lives,” Airbnb CEO and co-founder Brian Chesky said in a statement. “For these 20,000 refugees, my hope is that the Airbnb community will provide them with not only a safe place to rest and start over, but also a warm welcome home.”

Around 3.5 million people living in Afghanistan have been displaced, including around 270,000 due to Taliban advances since January, the U.N. reported on July 13. Around 10,400 people were evacuated by U.S. military flights from Afghanistan Sunday and another 6,660 were taken Monday, according to the Associated Press.

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Newt Gingrich Commentary: The Higher Inflation and Bigger Debt Act

United States currency

The $3.5 trillion spending bill set up to follow the $1.1 trillion infrastructure bill (which has little to do with infrastructure) should be called what it really is: The Higher Inflation and Bigger Debt Act.

The Democrats would like you to believe it is only a reconciliation bill. This is vital to them because a reconciliation bill only takes 50 senators and the vice president to pass the U.S. Senate.

However, this additional $3.5 trillion comes after trillions of emergency spending prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Consider what the Congressional Budget Office has written about the fiscal situation before the $1.1 trillion and $3.5 trillion bills are passed:

Here is what the Congressional Budget Office forecasts (not counting Biden’s enormous spending plan): 

“By the end of 2021, federal debt held by the public is projected to equal 102 percent of GDP. Debt would reach 107 percent of GDP (surpassing its historical high) in 2031 and would almost double to 202 percent of GDP by 2051. Debt that is high and rising as a percentage of GDP boosts federal and private borrowing costs, slows the growth of economic output, and increases interest payments abroad. A growing debt burden could increase the risk of a fiscal crisis and higher inflation as well as undermine confidence in the U.S. dollar, making it more costly to finance public and private activity in international markets.”

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New Poll Spells Bad News for Progressives in High-Profile Ohio Special Election

Shontel Brown and Nina Turner

Nina Turner and Shontel Brown, the two leading Democrats vying to fill a House seat that includes Cleveland, are tied with 33% support, a new poll shows.

The Aug. 3 special election will likely determine who will succeed Housing Secretary Marcia Fudge, who resigned the seat after getting confirmed in March. Though Turner, a close ally of Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, entered the race as an overwhelming favorite, Democrats seeking a moderate alternative have lined up behind Brown in recent weeks.

Brown has been endorsed by House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn, Hillary Clinton, the Congressional Black Caucus and other high-profile members of the Democratic establishment, while Turner has the support of the “Squad” and other progressives.

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Michigan Senate Passes $17 Billion Budget Plan

The Michigan Senate passed a plan totaling $17 billion for K-12 schools, hours before the budget deadline that levies no penalties for late action.

The real deadline for the state budget is Sept. 30, ahead of the Oct. 1 start of the state’s fiscal year.

House Bill 4410 passed on a 34-0 vote, which Senate Appropriations Chair Jim Stamas, R-Midland, called an “immediate priority.” The bill includes $10 million to repair natural disaster relief in cities flooded in June 2021.

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Michigan Senate Votes to End $300 Weekly Federal Unemployment Benefits

The Michigan Senate voted 19-16 to approve House Bill 4434, which aims to end the state’s participation in boosted $300/week federal unemployment program.

Republicans have argued the benefit hinders economic recovery 15 months after the pandemic started.

Business owners told lawmakers on June 17 they can’t find workers, even after hiking pay, signing bonuses, and flexible hours. Some industries have seen as many as 35% of workers not return post-COVID-19, leaving some gas stations wondering if they’ll get enough gas.

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Democrats Say Minnesota Governor’s Emergency Powers Could Last Until August

Gov. Tim Walz

Democrats said Monday that Gov. Tim Walz’s emergency powers will most likely continue into August.

Speaker of the House Melissa Hortman, D-Brooklyn Park, thinks both the governor and the legislature “foresee an end to the peacetime emergency sometime in the not-too-terribly distant future,” she said during a press conference Monday regarding the start of the special session.

She later indicated an end to the peacetime emergency sometime in August.

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State Rep. Chris Todd from Jackson Weighs in on Court Packing, National Issues, and Etiquette as a Member of the Tennessee House

Thursday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed State Rep. Chris Todd from Jackson, Tennessee in studio to discuss court-packing, Keepnine.org, and working with House members.

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General Assembly OKs Paid Parental Leave for Georgia State Workers

A follow-up attempt by lawmakers to implement paid parental leave for Georgia state employees is on its way to Gov. Brian Kemp.

The measure allows state employees in Georgia to take three weeks of paid parental leave. The House agreed Monday, 153-8, to the Senate’s changes to House Bill 146 after it unanimously passed the Senate last week. A similar measure cleared the House in 2020.

Under HB 146, state or local school board employees who worked at least 700 hours over the six months preceding the requested paid leave date can qualify for the paid time off after the birth of a child, adoption of a child or taking in of a foster child. Paid parental leave would be granted only once a calendar year. State agencies and school boards are able to dictate the policy rules.

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Georgia House Passes on Effort to Study State’s Tax, Revenue Structure

The Georgia House has rejected a bill that would have launched a review of the state’s revenue and tax structure.

Senate Bill 148 would have created two panels to study and make recommendations for the state’s coffers. It would have re-established the Special Council on Tax Reform and Fairness for Georgians and create the Special Joint Committee on Georgia Revenue Structure.

The House voted, 139-20, against the bill Thursday. It had 39 sponsors. 

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Eleven Republican U.S. Senators and Senators-Elect Join Growing Chorus in Congress Who Say They Will Challenge Electoral College Results Wednesday

Eleven more Republican U.S. senators and senators-elect from 10 states said they will contest the Electoral College results Wednesday over fraud concerns.

U.S. Senator Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), one of the 11, made the announcement Saturday. Senator-Elect Bill Hagerty (R-TN), who was endorsed by President Donald Trump in the election, is working with her in the dissent.

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Rep. Green Appointed to National Defense Authorization Act Reconciliation Committee

U.S. Rep. Dr. Mark Green (R-TN-07) was appointed to a committee to work out differences between the House and Senate on the annual defense funding act.

House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA-23) made the announcement Wednesday.

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Crom Carmichael Discusses the Concept of Democratic Losses That Leaned Too Left

Monday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed all-star panelist Crom Carmichael to the studio to weigh in on the several Democratic losses that suffered by being too progressive.

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Incumbent Democrat Rep. Elaine Luria Defends Seat Against Republican Scott Taylor

Incumbent Elaine Luria (D-VA-02) retained her seat in a battle against Republican candidate Scott Taylor that was similar to 2018. 

In the first hour after polls closed, Taylor started out with a 23 point lead in the 17 percent of votes reported. From there on out, Taylor’s lead dwindled. Two hours after polls closed, Taylor was up by 18 points with 36 percent of the votes reported. An hour later, Taylor dropped to lead Luria by 10 points with 48 percent of votes. By 1 in the morning, Luria made her first gain ahead of Taylor, leading by 3 points with 85 percent of the vote.

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Minnesota, Virginia Congressmen Propose Constitutional Amendment to Limit Supreme Court Size at Nine Justices

U.S. Reps. Collin C. Peterson (D-MN-07) and Denver Riggleman (R-VA-05) said they want to make sure that neither political party can ever pack the Supreme Court.

In a bipartisan joint press release issued Thursday, the representatives said they introduced an amendment to the U.S. Constitution to permanently set the number of U.S. Supreme Court Justices at nine.

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Rep. Green Selected to Serve on House Foreign Affairs Committee

U.S. Rep. Dr. Mark Green (R-TN-07) was selected by the House Republican Steering Committee to serve as a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

Green said in a tweet, “I’m honored to be selected by the Steering Committee to join the House Foreign Affairs Committee. I look forward to working with @RepMcCaul and the committee to confront the global challenges facing the US during this difficult time.”

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Neil McCabe Discusses Complacent Republicans and Trump’s Lack of a Second Term Agenda

Live from Music Row Wednesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. –  host Leahy welcomed Tennessee Star National Correspondent Neil McCabe to the newsmakers line.

During the third hour, McCabe weighed in on Republicans’ complacent behavior to mail-in voting but noted that they might have a good chance of retaking the House with only 18 votes needed. He somberly admitted that a Biden presidency would result in a restructuring of police departments and that the Democrats would continue to go after former Trump administration officials.

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State Lawmakers Will Have to Reconcile the House Budget Proposal That Gives Tax Dollars Back to Citizens and Makes Deeper Cuts Than the Senate Version

As the second session of the 111th Tennessee General Assembly winds down, the House and Senate will need to reconcile their two different budget proposals to close out the current fiscal year and for the upcoming fiscal year 2021.

The Senate version passed with a vote of 27 Ayes, 1 No and 2 Present and Not Voting during the June 11 floor session.

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Trump Impeached: U.S. House Impeaches President for Third Time in Nation’s History

The U.S. House of Representatives officially impeached President Donald J. Trump Wednesday evening, making him just the third president in the country’s history to be impeached.

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IMPEACHMENT: McCabe Details the Rules Committee’s Role and How the Impeachment Vote May Play Out in the Senate

In a regularly scheduled weekly interview on Tuesday’s Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. – Leahy was joined on the newsmakers line by One America News Network’s Washington, D.C. correspondent, Neil McCabe.

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Collin Peterson Leaning Against Voting for Articles of Impeachment: ‘Too Divisive’

Rep. Collin Peterson (D-MN-07) said he’s leaning against voting for the articles of impeachment that House Democrats officially introduced Tuesday morning.

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Democrats’ Effort to Impeach President Trump Are ‘Witch Hunt’ and ‘Shiny Object Story of the Day,’ Blackburn Says

U.S. Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) had some things to say — such as “witch hunt” — on the Senate floor Wednesday about House Democrats’ impeachment inquiry about President Donald Trump.

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Rep. Mark Green Will Help Reconcile House, Senate Versions of National Defense Authorization Act

U.S. Rep. Dr. Mark Green (R-TN-07) was selected Tuesday to serve on the House-Senate Conference Committee for the Fiscal Year 2020 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).

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Ilhan Omar Has Nine Percent Approval Rating Among Swing-State Voters

  An internal poll reportedly “making the rounds of some of the most influential Democrats in America” shows that Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN-05) has a nine percent approval rating among swing-state voters. The poll was obtained exclusively by Axios, which reports that the poll was conducted in May by Democratic…

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Omar, AOC Voted Against Bill That Would Improve Standards of Immigrant Detention Centers

  Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN-05) joined three House Democrats in voting against a bill Tuesday evening that would provide $4.5 billion in emergency border funding, some of it for humanitarian relief. According to NPR, the House bill “seeks to establish protocols to meet standards of care for migrants held in…

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Rep. Green Votes ‘No’ on Democrat Government Appropriations Bill Spending $400M More than President Trump Requested

  U.S. Rep. Dr. Mark Green (R-TN-07) voted “no” on H.R. 3351, the Financial Services and General Government Appropriations Act, 2020. He released the following statement explaining his vote: “Congressional Democrats must not be able to help themselves. They love spending taxpayer money,” said Rep. Mark Green. “The president requested…

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Rep. Green Calls for ‘Permanent Solution to the Border Crisis’

  U.S. Rep. Dr. Mark Green (R-TN-07) on Monday called for a “permanent solution to the border crisis.” Green, a member of the House Homeland Security Committee, made his statement in regard to both the Senate and House, which reportedly are working on bills simultaneously to bring humanitarian relief to…

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Ohio’s Marcia Fudge Shared Letter on House Floor Calling Trump Supporters ‘Racist’ and ‘Just Plain Dumb’

  On the House floor Tuesday morning, Rep. Marcia Fudge (D-OH-11) shared a letter she received from a constituent that calls for the impeachment of President Donald Trump and describes his supporters as “racist” and “just plain dumb.” According to Fudge, the letter was written by Dr. Ronald S. Williams,…

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