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Republicans rallied solidly against Democrats’ proposed $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill as lawmakers awaited a decision by the Senate’s parliamentarian that could bolster or potentially kill a pivotal provision hiking the federal minimum wage.

Despite their paper-thin congressional majorities, Democratic leaders were poised to push the sweeping package through the House on Friday. They were hoping the Senate, where changes seem likely, would follow quickly enough to have legislation on President Joe Biden’s desk by mid-March.


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Pressure is building on school systems around the U.S. to reopen classrooms to students who have been learning online for nearly a year, pitting politicians against teachers who have yet to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

In Chicago, the rancor is so great that teachers are on the brink of striking. In California, a frustrated Gov. Gavin Newsom implored schools to find a way to reopen. In Cincinnati, some students returned to classrooms Tuesday after a judge threw out a teachers union lawsuit over safety concerns.


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Democrats in Congress and the White House have rejected a Republican pitch to split President Joe Biden’s $1.9 trillion COVID-19 rescue plan into smaller chunks, with lawmakers appearing primed to muscle the sweeping economic and virus aid forward without GOP help.

Despite Biden’s calls for unity, Democrats said the stubbornly high unemployment numbers and battered U.S. economy leave them unwilling to waste time courting Republican support that might not materialize. They also don’t want to curb the size and scope of a package that they say will provide desperately needed money to distribute the vaccine, reopen schools and send cash to American households and businesses.


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The head of the Republican National Committee on Wednesday declined to encourage former President Donald Trump to run for the White House in 2024, saying the GOP would stay “neutral” in its next presidential primary.

In an interview, RNC Chairman Ronna McDaniel also described the pro-Trump conspiracy theory group known as QAnon as “dangerous.”

The national GOP, under McDaniel’s leadership, spent the past four years almost singularly focused on Trump’s 2020 reelection. But should he run again in 2024 — and he has publicly and privately suggested he wants to — the national party infrastructure would not support his ambitions over other prospective candidates in accordance with party rules, she said.


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Vice President Kamala Harris broke the barrier that has kept men at the top ranks of American power for more than two centuries when she took the oath Wednesday to hold the nation’s second-highest office.

Hours after she was sworn in as the first female U.S. vice president — and the first Black woman and person of South Asian descent in the role — she cast the moment as one that embodied “American aspiration.”


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Congress passed a $900 billion pandemic relief package Monday night that would finally deliver long-sought cash to businesses and individuals and resources to vaccinate a nation confronting a frightening surge in COVID-19 cases and deaths.

Lawmakers tacked on a $1.4 trillion catchall spending bill and thousands of pages of other end-of-session business in a massive bundle of bipartisan legislation as Capitol Hill prepared to ...


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His time in the White House rapidly ending, President Donald Trump is rewarding some supporters and like-minded allies with the perks and prestige that come with serving on federal advisory boards and commissions.

On Thursday, Trump announced his intention to nominate two authors who wrote books that flattered him to a board that makes recommendations on education research. Another author who helped write a favorable book about the president was chosen for the same board a few days earlier.

On Wednesday, the Department of Defense announced that China hawk Michael Pillsbury would become the chair of a board that gives Pentagon leadership advice on how to enhance national security. Pillsbury has served as an outside adviser to the president on China.


Reuters | Equities.com |

Republican senators on Tuesday attacked the chief executives of Facebook and Twitter for what they called censorship of President Trump and his allies during the U.S. election while Democrats bemoaned the spread of misinformation on social media.

The CEOs, Jack Dorsey of Twitter and Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook, defended their content moderation practices at a congressional hearing scheduled after the platforms decided to block stories from the New York Post that made claims about the son of then-Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden.

The move incited uproar among Republican lawmakers who have consistently accused the companies of anti-conservative bias.


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As election misinformation continued to rage online, Facebook Inc said on Wednesday its post-election ban on political ads would likely last another month, raising concerns from campaigns and groups eager to reach voters for key Georgia Senate races in January.

Facebook, which had announced the ban as part of measures to combat misinformation and other abuses on its site, had previously said the ban would last at least a week but could be extended. Alphabet Inc's Google also appeared to be sticking with its post-election political ad ban.


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President Donald Trump is facing pressure to cooperate with President-elect Joe Biden’s team to ensure a smooth transfer of power when the new administration takes office in January.

The General Services Administration is tasked with formally recognizing Biden as president-elect, which begins the transition. But the agency’s Trump-appointed administrator, Emily Murphy, has not started the process and has given no guidance on when she will do so.

That lack of clarity is fueling questions about whether Trump, who has not publicly recognized Biden’s victory and has falsely claimed the election was stolen, will impede Democrats as they try to establish a government.