Archives for News

Rubio mum on immigration now

On a recent swing through the most conservative parts of his state, Sen. Marco Rubio told a packed banquet hall at the St. Andrews Bay Yacht Club that major policy issues were threatening the American dream: onerous taxes, burdensome regulations — and, above all, President Barack Obama’s health care law. But all Doc Washburn wanted to know about was immigration. The local radio talk-show host asked the Republican senator why he had worked with Democrats on legislation that would give the estimated 11 million immigrants here illegally an eventual path to citizenship. “We know you, and we’ve always loved you,”
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Ted Cruz: Canadian citizenship? What Canadian citizenship?

Sen. Ted Cruz, seemingly eyeing a presidential run in 2016, calls his renunciation of Canadian citizenship no big deal, even though questions about candidates’ birthplaces have flared in recent elections. Controversy still dogs President Barack Obama from some quarters despite proof he was born in Hawaii. Cruz, a Texas Republican and tea party favorite, was born in Canada, to a Cuban father and U.S.-born mother. His mother’s status has allowed him to be a citizen of both the United States and Canada, but he said Tuesday in Houston, “I believe it makes sense for me to be only an American.”
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Scalia: Supreme Court ‘inventing’ new minorities

The U.S. Supreme Court is making decisions that should be left to Congress or the people, from wiretapping to “inventing” new classes of minorities, Justice Antonin Scalia said Monday. In an apparent reference to the court’s recent decisions on gay marriage and benefits for same-sex couples, Scalia said it is not the function of the courts to create exceptions outside the Constitution unless a majority of people agree with them. “It’s not up to the courts to invent new minorities that get special protections,” Scalia told a packed hotel ballroom in southwestern Montana. The Supreme Court earlier this year cleared
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Ted Cruz: American or Canadian?

Senator Ted Cruz, a Texas Republican whose recent travel has fueled speculation that he may run for president in 2016, has released his birth certificate, showing he was born in Canada to an American mother, the Dallas Morning News reported on Monday. In a statement issued later, Cruz offered to renounce his Canadian citizenship in order to “be only an American.” President Barack Obama, a Democrat and the first black U.S. president, faced intense scrutiny from “birthers” about his eligibility to be president. Born in 1961 to an American mother and Kenyan father, Obama released his birth certificate in 2011,
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More students get federal aid

With college costs continuing to rise, more students are receiving federal financial aid, though state and institutional aid remains largely flat Data released Tuesday by the National Center for Education Statistics, a branch of the U.S. Department of Education, shows 71 percent of all undergraduate students received some type of financial aid in the 2011-12 school year, up from 66 percent four years earlier. Forty-two percent of students received federal grants, up from 28 percent, and 40 percent received federal loans, an increase of 5 percentage points. Meanwhile, 15 percent received state grants and 20 percent received a grant from
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Illinois expands background checks on all gun purchases

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn signed a gun-control measure into law on Sunday that expands background checks to cover all firearms purchases in the state, closing what he said was a loophole that exempted gun sales between private parties. The new law also requires all gun owners to report any lost or stolen firearms to local police within 72 hours. “Guns are a plague on too many of our communities,” Quinn, a Democrat, said in a statement. “Making sure guns do not fall into the wrong hands is critical to keeping the people of Illinois safe. This commonsense law will help
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GOP approves debate boycott

The U.S. Republican party resolved on Friday to boycott any 2016 presidential debates sponsored by CNN and NBC if the networks go ahead with plans to make special programs on Hillary Clinton, who is widely expected to seek the Democratic nomination. Delegates to a meeting of the Republican National Committee voted for a resolution that included the boycott and said the programs would be “little more than extended commercials promoting former Secretary Clinton.” The RNC also resolved that it would require that any future debates have “appropriate moderators and debate partners.” Delegates approved the motion by a unanimous voice vote.
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Ready for 2016?

Potential presidential candidates’ recent burst of summertime Iowa visits belies this reality: No one has started to do the serious spadework of preparing for a 2016 White House run in this important state. Sure, it’s more than two years until Iowa is to begin the presidential selection process. But this is a state where presidential campaigning — including, early on, wooing state legislators, recruiting volunteers and identifying potential staff — is a near-constant undercurrent. And yet the biggest names in the 2016 speculation game are all but absent in Iowa, so well-known that they have the luxury of staying away
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Al Qaeda: ‘Kill more Americans’

An American al Qaeda militant has called for more attacks on Western diplomats in the Arab world, praising the killers of the U.S. ambassador to Libya on September 11 last year, a U.S.-based monitoring group said on Sunday. Western nations shut embassies across the Middle East and North Africa early this month, after a warning of a possible militant attack. Many have reopened, and Britain said its Yemen embassy would open on Sunday after being closed for 12 days. Adam Gadahn, a California-born convert to Islam with a $1 million U.S. price on his head, appealed to wealthy Muslims to
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Senate races: All in the family

Sen. Mark Pryor likes to tell voters that he always puts Arkansas first, borrowing the campaign slogan associated with his family for decades. In Wyoming, Liz Cheney bets that her famous father’s name will be gold in her Senate race. And in Louisiana, Sen. Mary Landrieu counts on her kin’s New Orleans ties to help lift her to re-election in a tough race. Family does matter in the runup to next fall’s Senate elections: Candidates are wielding famous political pedigrees in a number of races that could determine whether Democrats maintain control in the 2014 elections. Famous last names mean
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