Archives for Politics

States challenge constitutionality of health care law

Top legal officials from 14 states across the country on Tuesday filed lawsuits challenging an overhaul of the U.S.’ $2.5 trillion healthcare system, minutes after President Barack Obama signed the landmark legislation. One joint lawsuit by a dozen Republican attorneys general and a Democrat claims the sweeping reforms violate state-government rights in the U.S. Constitution and will force massive new spending on hard-pressed state governments. Virginia went to court separately, while Missouri Republican Lieutenant Gov. Peter Kinder said he would like to join the suit. The joint suit, led by Florida, was filed with a federal court in Pensacola, according
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Idaho: Screw mandatory health care insurance

Idaho is leading the charge in a states-rights push to defeat a proposal in Congress that would require people to buy health insurance, a key piece of reforms being pushed by President Barack Obama. Republican Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter used a ceremony Wednesday afternoon to become the first governor to sign into law a measure requiring the state attorney general to sue the federal government over any such insurance mandates. There’s similar legislation pending in 37 other states, a point Otter stressed when asked if the bill he signed can succeed, given constitutional law experts are already saying federal laws
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Rielle Hunter ‘upset’ over racy photos

If Rielle Hunter, John Edwards‘ bedmate, expected to create public sympathy with her photo spread in GQ magazine, her judgment was as lacking as her clothing. Hunter chose to appear in the magazine clad only in a man’s dress shirt and nothing else. The photos prompted an immediately outcry that the “other woman” who helped bring down Edwards’ once-promising political career and his marriage to his cancer-stricken wife was using sex to sell her story. So Hunter pulled a Miley Cyrus, claiming the photographer “used” her and violated her trust. She reportedly called Barbara Walter “in tears” and called the
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Liz Cheney’s witchhunt flames out

A witchhunt orchestrated by George W. Bush supporters against government lawyers representing Guantanamo inmates has backfired, as conservatives joined the outcry against the McCarthy-like attacks. “Who are these government officials? Eric Holder would only name two. What’s the secrecy behind the other seven? Whose values do they share?” asks the video ad posted online by the conservative group Keep America Safe. “Tell Eric Holder the Americans have the right to know their identities, the Al-Qaeda Seven.” Liz Cheney, daughter of former vice president Dick Cheney, has come under fire from left and right for orchestrating the campaign questioning the patriotism
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Utah GOP leader admits hot tub romp with minor

Utah’s House majority leader said late Thursday he paid a woman $150,000 to keep silent about going nude “hot-tubbing” with her when she was minor a quarter century ago. In a shocking statement on the House floor, Kevin Garn, 55, of Layton said he paid her to keep quiet about the incident during his unsuccessful U.S. congressional bid in 2002, but did not have sexual contact with her. Garn said the woman, who he didn’t identify on the floor, has been calling news outlets and that he wanted to be open about the incident that occurred when he was 28
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The never-ending debate over abortion

President Barack Obama’s health care bill would change federal policy on abortion, but not open the spigot of taxpayer dollars that some abortion opponents fear. Abortion rights groups such as Planned Parenthood and NARAL Pro-Choice America say the House and Senate versions of the bill represent the biggest expansion of abortion restrictions in years, yet they’re not trying to defeat the measures. Instead, a bitter dispute among abortion opponents over which version is stricter could derail Obama’s quest to remake the health insurance system. Major anti-abortion groups such as the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and the National Right to
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Bitter partisanship not new in America

The current partisan divide is as stark and nasty as any in recent history and on almost every issue — from health care to energy independence to reviving the economy — there’s little or no effort to find common ground. But fierce political battle is also a tradition ingrained in American history. If today’s hostile environment is particularly intense, it’s downright genteel compared to many battles of the past. The Civil War, when anti- and pro-slavery forces split the nation, is the most extreme example. But there’s also the beginning of the 20th century, when the country was becoming more
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When discontent turns into hate

The river of discontent running through America turned toxic in the fevered mind of the Pentagon shooter and others of his ilk. In a culture awash in conspiracy theories and raw anger at government, they are lone wolves who find a sense of community for their hate — yet act alone. They are, in some ways, more unsettling than organized and trained terrorists because they come from us. Their diatribes and smoldering grievances are familiar and homegrown. For the Texan who steered a small plane into IRS offices last month, it was taxes. For the Nevadan who shot at a
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Pentagon shooter driven by hatred, conspiracy theories

A bitter Californian consumed by hatred towards the U.S. government and conspiracy theories about the 9/11 terrorism attacks and other perceived government coverups opened fire on Pentagon police Thursday night, wounding two before officers cut him down in a fusillade of gunfire. John Patrick Bedell hated the government and the American military and was convinced the government, not terrorists, destroyed the World Trade Center twin towers in New York and faked the attack on the Pentagon in Washington. Pentagon police chief Richard Keevill said Bedell walked up to police officers at the entrance to the Metro subway station at the
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More teens getting drunk, stoned

According to a new report released Tuesday by the Partnership for a Drug-Free America, more and more teenagers are boozing it up and getting stoned on grass. The increase reverses a decade of drops in alcohol and marijuana use by the younger set and that has some people worried. “I’m a little worried that we may be seeing the leading edge of a trend here,” Sean Clarkin, director of strategy for the anti-drug group, told The Associated Press. “Historically you do see the increase in recreational drugs before you see increases in some of the harder drugs.” The study shows
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