Republican Sen. Rubio says he will vote against the GOP'S sweeping tax package if negotiators fail to expand the child tax credit WASHINGTON (AP) - The Republicans' razor-thin margin for driving their sweeping tax package through the Senate was thrown into jeopardy Thursday when GOP Sen. Marco Rubio declared he will vote against it unless negotiators expand the tax credit that low-income Americans can claim for their children. Rubio's potential defection complicates Republican leaders' goal of muscling the $1.5 trillion bill through Congress next week, handing President Donald Trump his first major legislative victory by Christmas. Senate Republicans could still pass the package without Rubio's vote, but they would be cutting it extremely close. An original version was approved by only 51-49 - with Rubio's support.
Man accused of ramming car into crowd protesting against white nationalists in Virginia faces new charge of first-degree murder CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) - The man accused of driving into a crowd protesting a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville faces a new charge of first-degree murder after a court hearing Thursday in which prosecutors presented surveillance video and other evidence against him. Prosecutors announced at the start of a preliminary hearing for James Alex Fields that they were seeking to upgrade the second-degree murder charge he previously faced in the Aug. 12 collision in Charlottesville that left 32-year-old Heather Heyer dead and dozens injured. The judge agreed to that and ruled there is probable cause for all charges against Fields to proceed.
Kentucky lawmaker who spun history of heroics ends life with self-inflicted gunshot on lonely rural road FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - The Kentucky lawmaker's resume included enough material for an award-winning memoir: He was a peacekeeper at the Rodney King riots in Los Angeles, a White House chaplain to three presidents and a 9/11 first responder who gave last rites to hundreds of people at Ground Zero. But Republican Dan Johnson's carefully crafted history crumbled this week following an extensively reported story from the Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting. The story tore down his claims and portrayed him as a con man whose deceptions propped up his ministry of a church of outcasts in Louisville and hid a sinister secret: a sexual assault allegation from a 17-year-old girl.
FCC votes along party lines to end 'net neutrality' The Federal Communications Commission repealed the Obama-era "net neutrality" rules Thursday, giving internet service providers like Verizon, Comcast and AT&T a free hand to slow or block websites and apps as they see fit or charge more for faster speeds. In a straight party-line vote of 3-2, the Republican-controlled FCC junked the longtime principle that said all web traffic must be treated equally. The move represents a radical departure from more than a decade of federal oversight. The big telecommunications companies had lobbied hard to overturn the rules, contending they are heavy-handed and discourage investment in broadband networks. "What is the FCC doing today?" asked FCC chairman Ajit Pai, a Republican.
U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley says "undeniable" evidence proves that Iran is violating international law by funneling missiles to Houthi rebels in Yemen WASHINGTON (AP) - Flanked by singed missile remnants, President Donald Trump's envoy to the United Nations declared Thursday that "undeniable" evidence proves Iran is arming Houthi rebels in Yemen, the latest bid by the Trump administration to rally the world against the Persian Gulf nation. U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley came to an emptied-out hangar at a military base not far from the U.S. Capitol, where fragments recovered from missiles launched from Yemen were paraded before reporters. Haley said the truck-sized missile segment behind her had been launched at the international airport in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, and "led the U.S. intelligence community to conclude unequivocally that these weapons were supplied by the Iranian regime."
Republican tax bill drops controversial loan provisions that critics said would make college less affordable WASHINGTON (AP) - Republican lawmakers have dropped from the tax bill provisions that were criticized by students and educators as making college less affordable. House and Senate Republican leaders forged an agreement Wednesday on what would be the most sweeping overhaul of the nation's tax laws in more than 30 years. The package would give generous tax cuts to corporations and the wealthiest Americans, and more modest tax cuts to low- and middle-income families. The updated version leaves in place the deduction for interest on student loans, according to two congressional aides. The bill also would no longer start taxing graduate-school tuition waivers.
Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be
published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Comments and