The GOP’s plan to repeal Obamacare is moving forward. On Thursday, the U.S. Senate approved a budget resolution that would allow Republicans to swiftly reform the Affordable Care Act. The Senate voted 51-48 on the measure. “The Senate just took an important step toward repealing and replacing Obamacare by passing the resolution that provides the legislative tools necessary to actually repeal this failed law while we move ahead with smarter health care policies,” said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. During the vote, Democratic leaders who are against the Obamacare repeal protested by verbally dedicating their votes to individuals who would be impacted by the reform. The House of Representatives will vote on the measure on Friday. Read more.
Black Politicians Say America ‘Cannot Count’ On Jeff Sessions
On Wednesday, several African-American politicians gathered to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee in an effort to prevent Jeff Sessions from becoming the country’s next attorney general. Amongst those present included Congressional Black Caucus Chair Rep. Cedric Richmond, Rep. John Lewis, and Senator Cory Booker. During his testimony, Sen. Booker said that the nation “cannot count” on Sessions because he isn’t committed to seeking justice for groups that need it most. “Sen. Sessions has not demonstrated a commitment to a central requirement of the job ― to aggressively pursue the congressional mandate of civil rights, equal rights, and justice for all,” he said. “His record indicates that we cannot count on him to support state and national efforts toward bringing justice to a justice system that people on both sides of the aisle readily admit is biased against the poor, drug addicted, mentally ill, and people of color.” Read more.
New York Lawmakers Call On AG Loretta Lynch To Finish Eric Garner Probe
New York political leaders are calling on Attorney General Loretta Lynch and the Department of Justice to finish the probe surrounding the death of Eric Garner, a Staten Island man who died after being placed in a chokehold by police officers during an arrest in 2014. Rep. Hakeem Jeffries and other congressional leaders believe that if Senator Jeff Sessions becomes the country’s next attorney general, Garner’s case will be sidelined. “This result is not only unacceptable for Mr. Garner and his family, but for all communities where the use of excessive force and overly aggressive policing tactics threaten life and liberty,” wrote Rep. Jeffries in a letter. He says the Department of Justice needs to “either fish or cut bait” in regards to Garner’s case. The Justice Department has not responded to the request. Read more.
Ben Carson’s Confirmation Hearing To Begin
Ben Carson is slated to go before the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs on Thursday to be confirmed as the nation’s next Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Carson, 65, was nominated by President-elect Donald Trump on December 5. “I am honored to accept the opportunity to serve our country in the Trump administration,” he said in a statement. “I feel that I can make a significant contribution particularly by strengthening communities that are most in need. We have much work to do in enhancing every aspect of our nation and ensuring that our nation’s housing needs are met.” Carson has held meetings with congressional members to be briefed on issues the agency is looking to eradicate. Read more.
Schomburg Center In Harlem Designated As National Historic Landmark
The U.S. Interior Department designated 24 places as National Historic Landmarks throughout the country on Wednesday. Among those declared national landmarks was the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in Harlem. The library, which opened its doors in 1925, is recognized as a cornerstone for African-American research. The Interior Department says that the Schomburg Center was chosen because it “represents the idea of the African Diaspora, a revolutionizing model for studying the history and culture of people of African descent that used a global, transnational perspective.” Kevin Young, the center’s director, was honored by the recognition. “This honor will ensure future generations’ awareness of and access to the Schomburg and its many treasures for centuries to come,” he said in a statement. Read more.
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