An Alabama legislative committee has voted to ban abortion after a fetal heartbeat is detected -- something that can happen as early as six weeks into a pregnancy.
The House Health Committee approved the fetal heartbeat bill Tuesday. Both sides of the abortion debate agree the proposal would ban most abortions if it becomes law. They also agreed the proposal will be destined for a court fight if given final approval.
North Dakota approved similar legislation, but a federal judge put the law on hold while a legal challenge plays out in court.
Nearly four years after the Gulf oil spill, a political action committee associated with BP oil company is contributing to Alabama politicians' campaigns.
The Anniston Star says campaign contribution reports show a BP employee PAC gave $1,000 to Gov. Robert Bentley, $2,000 to House Speaker Mike Hubbard, and $500 each to Rep. Terri Collins of Decatur, Rep. Micky Hammon of Decatur, Rep. Ed Henry of Decatur, Rep. Ken Johnson of Moulton, Sen. Arthur Orr of Decatur, and Sen. Vivian Davis Figures of Mobile.
If more were actually getting done in Washington, there probably would be much less attention focused on how few times President Obama and Speaker John Boehner have met face-to-face, and on their "relationship."
But Congress is testing new lows in terms of legislative productivity, which leaves plenty of time for journalists to muse about the president-speaker relationship, such as it is, on the day of one of their rare meetings.
Originally published on Tue February 25, 2014 7:29 pm
Five current and former black senators appeared together Tuesday at an unprecedented event celebrating the legacy and contributions of the nine African-Americans to serve in the U.S. Senate.
The event, held at the Library of Congress to mark Black History Month, was the brainchild of Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C. The only Republican at the summit, Scott was joined by Democratic Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey and former Sens. William "Mo" Cowan of Massachusetts as well as Roland Burris and Carol Moseley Braun, both of Illinois.
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is facing criticism over what was once a source of his political strength — his handling of Superstorm Sandy.
While national attention focuses on accusations that the governor's top aides created traffic jams to punish political adversaries, back home it's the slow storm recovery from Sandy that's causing him new headaches.
Sandy crashed into the Jersey Shore eight days before the 2012 presidential election. Republican Christie had been campaigning hard for Mitt Romney, and trashing President Obama.
Arizona's Republican Governor Jan Brewer is being pressured to veto a bill that would allow business owners in the state to deny service to gays and lesbians. To deny service, the business owner has to have sincerely held religious beliefs. That's the legislation's wording. It's become so controversial that even some lawmakers who voted for it are now regretting it.
This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.
It's a sign of deeply partisan times when a Democratic president and a Republican House speaker make headlines just by sitting down and talking to each other. That's what happened today in a rare hour-long meeting that aides call constructive. How constructive is not exactly clear. And while the president and House speaker agreed to work together in areas where there's common ground, that appears to be very small territory.
From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Melissa Block.
Some members of Congress are calling for a more humane prison system. They're proposing a ban on solitary confinement for certain prisoners - among them, juveniles, pregnant women, and the mentally ill. Here's Illinois Democratic Senator Richard Durbin at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing today.
Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, a Republican, has been urged by the state's two U.S. senators, both Republicans, to veto a bill that would allow business owners to refuse service to gays or other groups that offend their religious beliefs.
Originally published on Tue February 25, 2014 3:43 pm
Many religious leaders are feeling under siege. They believe the Obama administration is at worst hostile but at least "tone deaf" to the demands of faith. In their view, the government is attempting to makethem act in ways that violate their convictions.
That is the context in which so-called religious freedom bills are being considered in Arizona and numerous other states.
The bills, which would allow business owners to refuse service to gays or other groups that offend their religious beliefs, appear discriminatory on their face.
It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning, I'm Renee Montagne.
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And I'm David Greene.
I n 1955, Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on an Alabama bus. "Rock Around the Clock" by Bill Haley and his Comets was a top hit on the music charts, and John Dingell became a member of Congress. Nearly six decades later, the Michigan Democrat, the longest-serving member of Congress is leaving. He announced his retirement yesterday.
The son and daughter-in-law of former Democratic House Speaker Tom Drake have lost their bids to run for major Alabama offices as Republicans.
The Alabama Republican Party's Candidate Committee did not grant ballot access to Cullman attorneys Tommy Drake and Kimberly Drake during a Saturday meeting in Montgomery.
Tommy Drake had signed up to run against Republican incumbent Robert Aderholt in the 4th Congressional District. Kimberly Drake was running against Republican incumbent Beth Kellum for the Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals.