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Gun Control Measures Dormant In Congress After Charleston Shooting

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This week’s slaughter of nine people in a South Carolina church left prospects that Congress will curb guns right where they’ve been for years — remote for now, according to lawmakers and activists on both sides of the issue.

Conceding that congressional action was unlikely soon, President Barack Obama said lawmakers will tighten federal firearms restrictions when they believe the public is demanding it.

“I am not resigned,” Obama told the U.S. Conference of Mayors in San Francisco on Friday. “I have faith we will eventually do the right thing.”

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!!!!!BN2015-6-21Outgunned1Image: Breaking News and Opinion on The Huffington Post

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http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/06/20/gun-control-charleston_n_7626602.html

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Republican-Controlled House Passes Bill To Cut $242 Million From Amtrak’s Budget

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 The GOP-controlled House passed legislation Tuesday to cut Amtrak’s budget by $242 million, though lawmakers added new funding for video cameras inside locomotive cabs to record engineers and help investigators get to the bottom of crashes such as last month’s deadly derailment in Philadelphia.

Amtrak announced last month it is going to install the cameras after years of delays. The transportation and housing measure approved by a narrow 216-210 vote contains $9 million approved last week to fund the inward-facing camera initiative in the budget year starting in October.

Amtrak is among many domestic programs whose budgets are cut or frozen by the GOP measures, as automatic spending curbs known as sequestration are again hitting federal agencies after two years of relief. Previous House GOP attempts to cut Amtrak over the years have been reversed, and Tuesday’s transportation measure is but an opening move in a longer chess match with the White House over spending levels for agency operating budgets passed annually by Congress.

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Think The Net Neutrality Fight Is Over? Think Again.

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When the Obama administration approved strong new net neutrality rules earlier this year, advocates rejoiced. “We have won on net neutrality,” Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak told The Guardian. President Barack Obama declared victory and thanked Reddit, the self-proclaimed “Front Page of the Internet” for its community’s activism on the issue.

But these celebrations may have been premature. Telecom and cable companies, which provide broadband access to the vast majority of Americans, are challenging the Obama administration’s actions in court. If they get their way, a federal appeals court will soon delay some rules that aim to protect net neutrality, the principle that all internet traffic should be treated equally. Open-Internet advocates fear that an unfavorable decision may open the door for harmful business practices while the court battle—which could take years—plays out. A stay on part of the new rules would also likely embolden Republicans on Capitol Hill who seek to pass laws gutting the rules.

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!!!!!BN2015-6-6ReturnOfTheWebWars1Image: Breaking News and Opinion on The Huffington Post

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http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/06/05/net-neutrality-lawsuit_n_7520322.html

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Federal Government Suffers Massive Hacking Attack

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China-based hackers are suspected of breaking into the computer networks of the U.S. government personnel office and stealing identifying information of at least 4 million federal workers, American officials said Thursday.

The Department of Homeland Security said in a statement that data from the Office of Personnel Management and the Interior Department had been compromised.

“The FBI is conducting an investigation to identify how and why this occurred,” the statement said.

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http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/06/04/government-data-breach_n_7514620.html

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Menendez Urges House To Keep Malaysia Out Of Obama’s Trade Deal

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Citing Malaysia’s abysmal slavery record, Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) urged the House on Monday to ensure his provision blocking the country’s membership in the Trans-Pacific Partnership makes it into final legislation that would give the president fast-track authority on such agreements.

The bill in question would give President Barack Obama expedited powers to push through Congress trade deals like TPP, which he hopes to seal with 11 Pacific nations.

It’s a change of tune for Menendez, who had worked out a deal with Obama to include modified language in the Senate bill. The newer language, which didn’t make it into the Senate-passed bill, would have allowed Tier 3 nations — the lowest rank that a country engaged in modern-day slavery can receive from the State Department — into Obama’s trade deals.

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!!!!!BN2015-6-1MenrndezDugIn1Image: Breaking News and Opinion on The Huffington Post

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http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/06/01/menendez-trade-slavery_n_7487312.html

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Beau Biden, Joe Biden’s Son, Dead At 46 Of Brain Cancer

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Joseph “Beau” Biden III, the son of Vice President Joe Biden, has died of brain cancer, the White House announced Saturday evening. He was 46.

“More than his professional accomplishments, Beau measured himself as a husband, father, son and brother,” Joe Biden said in a statement, calling him “quite simply, the finest man any of us have ever known.”

Beau Biden served as Delaware’s attorney general for eight years from 2007 to 2015. In 2010, he suffered a mild stroke, but recovered and went back to work.

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Patriot Act That Dennis Hastert Passed Led To His Indictment

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On Oct. 24, 2001, then-House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert (R-Ill.) shepherded the Patriot Act through the House of Representatives. It passed 357 to 66, advancing to the Senate and then-President George W. Bush’s desk for signing.

Hastert took credit for House passage in a 2011 interview, claiming it “wasn’t popular, and there was a lot of fight in the Congress” over it.

Little did Hastert know at the time that the law he helped pass would give federal law enforcement the tools to indict him on charges of violating banking-related reporting requirements more than a decade later.

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!!!!!BN2015-5-29IndictedDennyBusted1Image: Breaking News and Opinion on The Huffington Post

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http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/05/28/dennis-hastert-patriot-act_n_7465780.html

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