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House GOP leaders block vote banning LGBT discriminaton

House blocks ban against LGBT discrimination Republican House leaders have refused to allow a vote on a bill that would outlaw anti-LGBT discrimination by federal contractors.

Their decision came just days after the mass shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando that killed 49 people and left 53 more injured.


Senate Fails To Secure Visas For Afghan Interpreters Who Risked Their Lives For U.S. Troops

Afghani interpreters do not get visas extendedA bipartisan attempt to secure thousands of visas for Afghan interpreters who risked their lives to assist American troops in the war in Afghanistan stalled on Tuesday, when the Senate passed a version of the massive defense spending bill that omitted the amendment backed by Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.) and Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman John McCain (R-Ariz.).

The seemingly uncontroversial amendment, which extends the existing special immigrant visa program for one year and allocates an additional 2,500 visas for the program, never had a vote on the Senate floor. In an effort to force a vote on his unrelated amendment, Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah), blocked votes on several amendments, including the Shaheen provision, which the Utah senator said he supported.


Senate passes bill allowing Sept. 11 victims to sue Saudi Arabia

Senate pass bill allowing familiees to sue Saudi ArabiaThe U.S. Senate passed legislation on Tuesday that would allow survivors and relatives of those killed in the Sept. 11 attacks to file lawsuits seeking damages against the government of Saudi Arabia.

The legislation, known as the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act, or JASTA, passed in the Senate by unanimous voice vote.

If it passes the House of Representatives and is signed into law by U.S. President Barack Obama, JASTA would allow lawsuits to proceed in federal court in New York as lawyers try to prove that the Saudis were involved in the 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.


Obama vetoes anti-climate change measures passed by Congress

obamaPresident Barack Obama has vetoed two measures that would have blocked steps that his administration is taking to address climate change.

One would have nullified carbon pollution standards set by the Environmental Protection Agency. The second would have voided a set of national standards designed to reduce the amount of greenhouse gas pollution from existing power plants.


Pelosi unsure omnibus can pass

PelosiHouse Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said Thursday she’s unsure whether the $1.1 trillion year-end government spending bill will pass the House — despite support from President Obama and congressional leaders in both parties and chambers.

Asked if she's “confident” the package will win enough Democratic votes to move through the lower chamber, Pelosi didn't pause for a second.

“No,” she told reporters in the Capitol. “We're talking it through.”


Dem senators call on Pentagon for transparency on child sex abuse

Dem Senators want probe into miitary chile abuseThree female Democratic senators are pushing the Pentagon for more transparency on child sex abuse cases in the military, following a recent report highlighting the prevalence of such cases.  

Sens. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) and Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii) sent Defense Secretary Ashton Carter a letter Tuesday urging him to reform the military judicial system "so that it is transparent and accountable."


Ex-Benghazi investigator alleges Rep. Gowdy violated federal law

gowdt broke lawsThe legal battle between the House Benghazi Committee and its former investigator, Todd Podliska, escalated Monday afternoon, when Podliska’s lawyers alleged that Chairman Trey Gowdy violated government confidentiality rules and federal law in responding to allegations made by Podliska.

“Both Representative Gowdy and the committee have clearly violated terms of the confidentiality agreement and the Congressional Accountability Act,” said Peter Romer-Friedman, one of Podliska’s attorneys, to MSNBC on Monday afternoon.


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