Review Category : Poltics

Scott Walker to Announce His 2016 Plans Week of July 13

ABC News(WASHINGTON) — It’s official: Scott Walker will announce his presidential intentions the week of July 13.

The Wisconsin governor made the news official during an appearance on FOX News Thursday evening.

“The week of the 13th is when we’ll be likely to make our announcement as to what our intentions are,” Walker told FOX News’ Greta Van Susteren, without specifying a particular day within the week.

There had been many indications before that an announcement was coming that week, but by personally saying so in an interview, Walker made it official.

Walker’s disclosure of his announcement comes after a string of other now-declared candidates have also leaked out their announcement date ahead of time.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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The Man Behind the Same-Sex Marriage Supreme Court Case Waits for Answers

tupungato/iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — Jim Obergefell woke up before sunrise, met with supporters and headed to the Supreme Court of the United States, where he got in line and awaited his seat at the forefront of history. It’s a routine he has perfected.

“The nerves hit for the first time last week on Monday, first time in the courtroom for decisions, and they’re reaching fever pitch,” he said.

As the lead plaintiff in the case challenging state same-sex marriage bans, Obergefell has become the face of the debate.

Obergefell sued the state of Ohio to get his name listed on his late husband’s death certificate. He married his partner of almost 21 years, John Arthur, in Maryland a few months before Arthur died. While same-sex marriage is legal in Maryland, Ohio refused to recognize the union. The Buckeye State amended its constitution in 2004 to prohibit gay marriage from being “valid in or recognized by” the state.

He decided to challenge the ban after learning that Ohio would not put his name on his husband’s death certificate.

“We wanted our marriage, our lawful marriage and our 20-year relationship to exist,” he said.

Obergefell said his motivation is about “dignity and the respect,” not financial gain. If Ohio recognizes his marriage he will receive $255 in Social Security benefits, and potentially a small disability benefit when he retires, according to Obergefell.

However, the impact will be wide-ranging. The outcome of his case will impact marriage laws for millions of Americans.

“John and I started this fight from a very personal place. It was about us. It was about our marriage, our relationship, but it is so much bigger, so much more important than just the two of us,” said Obergefell.

His opponents argue that the definition of marriage should be left to the states, the court should not interfere with states’ rights, and that bans ensure traditional marriage.

“This is a much bigger idea than any particular couple and what a marriage might mean to them or to their children. And when you change the definition of marriage to de-link the idea that we’re binding children with their biological mom and dad, that has consequences,” said Special Assistant Attorney John Bursch, on behalf of the states during oral arguments at the Supreme Court.

There are two main issues at stake. The first is whether the Constitution prohibits states from discriminating between gay and straight couples for purposes of marriage. The second is whether states are required to recognize legal same-sex marriages from other states, like Obergefell’s marriage, even if the states don’t grant licenses themselves.

Since the exact day of the announcement isn’t made public, Obergefell will continue to show up at the court and wait for a decision.

“I need to be in this courtroom when this decision comes out. I need to hear it from the judges’ mouth,” he said.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Rep. John Lewis Calls for Removal of Confederate Statue in US Capitol

Photo by Dave Martin/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — Georgia Democrat and civil rights icon Rep. John Lewis is calling for the removal of Georgia’s statue of U.S. congressman, Confederate VP and Georgia governor Alexander Stephens in the U.S. Capitol building.

“I think it should move, be removed,” Lewis told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “Some of the statues that are in the Capitol, they could be put in museums and different places.”

According to the paper—citing a contemporary newspaper account–Stephens is known for articulating a particularly infamous justification for Southern secession, known as the “Cornerstone Address.”

Lewis told the AJC that the Congressional Black Caucus is preparing a list of offensive statues to submit to the Architect of the Capitol.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Ted Cruz: ‘We Will Repeal Obamacare’

ABC News(WASHINGTON) — Sen. Ted Cruz gave a half-Senate-floor speech, half-stump speech on the “lawless” Supreme Court’s Obamacare decision which came down on Thursday.

He had to take pains not to refer to himself as a presidential candidate so as to avoid looking like he was campaigning from the well of the Senate, so instead he talked about how this election will be a referendum on Obamacare.

“Mark my words, following the election in 2016, the referendum that we will have in 2017, this chamber will return and we will repeal every word of Obamacare,” he said.

He also noted that he used to clerk for former Chief Justice William Rehnquist, who he said would be saddened by this Supreme Court.

“What this court has become is heartbreaking. If Chief Justice Rehnquist could see this court today, he would be filled with sorrow at what has become of the Supreme Court of the United States,” he said.

Cruz also took shots at the Washington establishment, claiming some Republicans were crying “crocodile tears” today at the Supreme Court’s decision.

“One day of faux outrage from the Washington cartel won’t fool the millions of courageous conservatives all across our country,” Cruz said. “They know that far too many career politicians, Democrats and Republicans in this nation’s capital, are quietly celebrating the court’s decision.”

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Marco Rubio Campaign Buys ‘Several Million’ Dollars’ Worth Of Airtime for Ads in Early Primary States

ABC/Donna Svennevik(WASHINGTON) — Get ready for it. The 2016 ad wars are coming soon to a television near you.

ABC News has learned Marco Rubio’s presidential campaign has pre-booked “several million” dollars worth of air time for advertisements in early primary and caucus states, becoming the first major ad buy of the 2016 presidential cycle.

A Rubio source tells ABC News the campaign has reserved air time in Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina and Nevada — all critical early states in the Republican nominating contest.

The ads won’t start running for some time, but Rubio, Florida’s Republican senator, has locked in the time at lower rates by buying now.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Running of the Interns: This Is What a Mad Dash Outside the Supreme Court is Like

ABC News(WASHINGTON) — As the nation awaited the Supreme Court’s decision on the constitutionality of federal Obamacare subsidies, interns at media outlets across D.C. laced up their sneakers and headed over to the Court for the “running of the interns,” a Washington decision-day ritual.

Because cameras aren’t allowed inside the courtroom, interns, armed with hard copies of the opinion, must dash across the plaza and down the steps to deliver the decision to the network correspondents waiting to go live from the press pen – with hordes of reporters, photographers, and protesters looking on.

According to ABC News intern Jennifer Tintner, who delivered the second copy of the decision to ABC staff, it “felt like the Olympics, coming out for the final sprint.”

ABC’s Allie Kessel delivered the decision on Thursdayto correspondent Terry Moran.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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House Passes Trade Adjustment Assistance Bill

iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — The Trade Adjustment Assistance aid program for American workers who are displaced by global trade passed the House on Thursday by a vote of 286 to 138.

The vote comes weeks after House Democrats defied the White House and Republicans by blocking the passage of the bill in an attempt to influence trade negotiations.

The measure, which also includes the extension of an African trade agreement, will join the fast-track authority (Trade Promotion Authority) bill on the president’s desk, clearing the way for President Obama to negotiate the Trans Pacific Partnership with limited Congressional influence.

Following the vote Thursday, Obama issued a statement applauding Congress for passing TPA and TAA this week and said he is looking forward to signing these bills “as soon as they reach my desk.”

Read the president’s full statement below:

I applaud the Democrats and Republicans in Congress who came together to give the United States the chance to negotiate strong, high-standard agreements for free and fair trade that protect American workers and give our businesses the opportunity to compete. With bipartisan majorities, Congress also voted to expand vital support for thousands of American workers each year, and to bolster economic relations between sub-Saharan Africa and the United States. Of course, we still have more work to do on behalf of our workers, which is why I’ll continue to encourage Congress to pass robust trade enforcement legislation that will help us crack down on countries that break the rules. But this week’s votes represent a much-needed win for hardworking American families.

As President, I’ve spent the last six and half years fighting to grow our economy and strengthen our middle class, and that remains my top priority today. I believe we should make sure that the United States, and not countries like China, write the rules of our global economy. We should support more good jobs that pay good wages. We should level the playing field so that our workers have the chance to compete and win. That’s what this new legislation will help us do, and I look forward to signing these bipartisan bills into law as soon as they reach my desk.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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House Passes Trade Adjustment Assistance Bill

iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — The Trade Adjustment Assistance aid program for American workers who are displaced by global trade passed the House on Thursday by a vote of 286 to 138.

The vote comes weeks after House Democrats defied the White House and Republicans by blocking the passage of the bill in an attempt to influence trade negotiations.

The measure, which also includes the extension of an African trade agreement, will join the fast-track authority (Trade Promotion Authority) bill on the president’s desk, clearing the way for President Obama to negotiate the Trans Pacific Partnership with limited Congressional influence.

Following the vote Thursday, Obama issued a statement applauding Congress for passing TPA and TAA this week and said he is looking forward to signing these bills “as soon as they reach my desk.”

Read the president’s full statement below:

I applaud the Democrats and Republicans in Congress who came together to give the United States the chance to negotiate strong, high-standard agreements for free and fair trade that protect American workers and give our businesses the opportunity to compete. With bipartisan majorities, Congress also voted to expand vital support for thousands of American workers each year, and to bolster economic relations between sub-Saharan Africa and the United States. Of course, we still have more work to do on behalf of our workers, which is why I’ll continue to encourage Congress to pass robust trade enforcement legislation that will help us crack down on countries that break the rules. But this week’s votes represent a much-needed win for hardworking American families.

As President, I’ve spent the last six and half years fighting to grow our economy and strengthen our middle class, and that remains my top priority today. I believe we should make sure that the United States, and not countries like China, write the rules of our global economy. We should support more good jobs that pay good wages. We should level the playing field so that our workers have the chance to compete and win. That’s what this new legislation will help us do, and I look forward to signing these bipartisan bills into law as soon as they reach my desk.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Former US Officials Warn Obama on Iran Nuke Deal

Alex Wong/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — An open letter crafted by former members of President Obama’s inner circle of Iran advisers warns that an emerging deal on Iran’s nuclear program “may fall short of meeting the administration’s own standard of a ‘good’ agreement.”

The officials from the Bush and Obama administrations — present its broad consensus of a series of minimum requirements that Iran must agree to for them to support a final deal. There are some well-known names too — David Petraeus, James Cartwright, Stephen Hadley and Joe Lieberman jump out in particular.

“The agreement will not prevent Iran from having a nuclear weapons capability. It will not require the dismantling of Iran’s nuclear enrichment infrastructure,” the officials write.

The letter was prompted by concern that Obama’s negotiators are heading toward concessions that would weaken international inspection of Iran’s facilities and fold on forcing Tehran to reveal its suspected past atomic weapons programs.

“[W]e fear that the current negotiations, unless concluded along the lines outlined in this paper and buttressed by a resolute regional strategy, may fall short of meeting the administration’s own standard of a ‘good’ agreement,” the letter states.

The officials note that in order to “maximize” the deal’s “potential for deterring and dissuading Iran from building a nuclear weapon,” the emerging nuclear agreement must provide monitoring and verification, allow for the free investigation of Iran’s past and any ongoing nuclear weaponization activities, limit advanced centrifuges, provide sanctions relief “based on Iran’s performance of its obligations” and include consequences of violations.

“The agreement must include a timely and effective mechanism to re-impose sanctions automatically if Iran is found to be in violation of the agreement, including by denying or delaying IAEA access. In addition, the United States must itself articulate the serious consequences Iran will face in that event,” the letter says.

The deadline for a deal is next Tuesday, June 30.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Former US Officials Warn Obama on Iran Nuke Deal

Alex Wong/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — An open letter crafted by former members of President Obama’s inner circle of Iran advisers warns that an emerging deal on Iran’s nuclear program “may fall short of meeting the administration’s own standard of a ‘good’ agreement.”

The officials from the Bush and Obama administrations — present its broad consensus of a series of minimum requirements that Iran must agree to for them to support a final deal. There are some well-known names too — David Petraeus, James Cartwright, Stephen Hadley and Joe Lieberman jump out in particular.

“The agreement will not prevent Iran from having a nuclear weapons capability. It will not require the dismantling of Iran’s nuclear enrichment infrastructure,” the officials write.

The letter was prompted by concern that Obama’s negotiators are heading toward concessions that would weaken international inspection of Iran’s facilities and fold on forcing Tehran to reveal its suspected past atomic weapons programs.

“[W]e fear that the current negotiations, unless concluded along the lines outlined in this paper and buttressed by a resolute regional strategy, may fall short of meeting the administration’s own standard of a ‘good’ agreement,” the letter states.

The officials note that in order to “maximize” the deal’s “potential for deterring and dissuading Iran from building a nuclear weapon,” the emerging nuclear agreement must provide monitoring and verification, allow for the free investigation of Iran’s past and any ongoing nuclear weaponization activities, limit advanced centrifuges, provide sanctions relief “based on Iran’s performance of its obligations” and include consequences of violations.

“The agreement must include a timely and effective mechanism to re-impose sanctions automatically if Iran is found to be in violation of the agreement, including by denying or delaying IAEA access. In addition, the United States must itself articulate the serious consequences Iran will face in that event,” the letter says.

The deadline for a deal is next Tuesday, June 30.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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