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Bernie Sanders: All Felons, Including Boston Marathon Bomber, Should Be Able to Vote In Prison

Bernie Sanders: All Felons, Including Boston Marathon Bomber, Should Be Able to Vote In PrisonSenator Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.) said Monday that all felons, including terrorists and rapists, should be able to vote while serving out their prison sentences.Asked during a CNN town hall in New Hampshire whether he believed people like the Boston marathon bomber should be disenfranchised, Sanders said no, and suggested that all restrictions on voting rights erode American democracy.If somebody commits a serious crime, sexual assault, murder, they're going to be punished," he said. They may be in jail for 10 years, 20 years, 50 years, their whole lives. That's what happens when you commit a serious crime. But I think the right to vote is inherent to our democracy. Yes, even for terrible people.Because once you start chipping away and you say, well that guy committed a terrible crime, not going to let him vote, or that person did that, not going to let that person vote, you're running down a slippery slope, he continued. So, I believe that people commit crimes, they pay the price. They get out of jail, I believe they certainly should have the right to vote. But I believe even if they're in jail, they're paying their price to society, but that should not take away their inherent American right to participate in our democracy.Sanders, who is polling second only to Joe Biden, effectively split the Democratic candidates attending the town hall on the question of voting rights for felons in prison. Senator Kamala Harris (D., Calif.) said she was open to having a conversation about whether terrorists and sexual offenders should be able to vote, while Southbend, Ind. mayor Pete Buttigieg said definitively that he supports the restoration of voting rights after prison but not while someone is still serving their sentence.

Tue, 23 Apr 2019 08:38:49 -0400
Lindsey Graham tells Trump to 'expect impeachment proceedings'

Lindsey Graham tells Trump to 'expect impeachment proceedings'A senior Trump ally says he expects impeachment proceedings against Donald Trump \- despite Democrat leader Nancy Pelosi attempting to steer party members away from the move.Republican Senator Lindsay Graham, chair of the senate judiciary committee, made the prediction on Twitter on Tuesday morning.He declared that the radical left is now in charge of the Democratic Party, meaning attempts by House Speaker Ms Pelosi to avoid divisive impeachment proceedings will fail.Nancy Pelosi is not in charge of the Democratic Party. The radical left is in charge.So, I will expect that there will be impeachment proceedings against President Trump.Speaking to Sean Hannity on Fox News on Monday night, he said he expected a stampede by the so-called radical left to impeach the president.He said he hates that Mr Trump will have to go through the process, but believes the Mueller report, released in a heavily redacted form last week, vindicates the president.The end result of impeachment proceedings, he predicted, would be Mr Trumps re-election in 2020.Any impeachment process would be extremely unlikely to pass the Senate.His comments come in the wake of Ms Pelosi, a pragmatic party elder not known for grand gestures, urging colleagues to pursue other options to impeachment this week.She said it was important to know that the facts regarding holding the president accountable can be gained outside of impeachment hearings.She condemned Mr Trumps highly unethical and unscrupulous behaviour as revealed in Robert Muellers report, but warned her party not to become overly obsessed with the specific way it responded.While our views range from proceeding to investigate the findings of the Mueller report or proceeding directly to impeachment, we all firmly agree that we should proceed down a path of finding the truth, Ms Pelosi wrote to colleagues ahead of a conference call.

Tue, 23 Apr 2019 10:09:24 -0400
Armed border group shuts down camp at border in New Mexico

Armed border group shuts down camp at border in New MexicoSUNLAND PARK, N.M. (AP) An armed group that has been patrolling the U.S.-Mexico border left its post in the New Mexico desert Tuesday amid pressure from law enforcement following videos that showed militia members stopping migrants who had illegally crossed into the country.

Tue, 23 Apr 2019 21:44:30 -0400
Battle of Mogadishu veteran responds to Ilhan Omar's criticism of 'Black Hawk Down' mission

Battle of Mogadishu veteran responds to Ilhan Omar's criticism of 'Black Hawk Down' missionIn a resurfaced tweet, Rep. Ilhan Omar claims U.S. forces killed 'thousands' of Somalis during the 1993 mission; reaction from retired Sergeant Major Kyle Lamb, who fought in the Battle of Mogadishu.

Tue, 23 Apr 2019 21:08:08 -0400
UPDATE 2-PG&E get approval to pay employees $350 mln to meet safety goals after wildfires

UPDATE 2-PG&E get approval to pay employees $350 mln to meet safety goals after wildfiresPG&E Corp can pay employees up to $350 million in bonuses this year to spur them to help meet the bankrupt California power provider's safety goals to prevent wildfires, a judge said on Tuesday. PG&E's management has said the company needs to implement the bonus plan to carry out tasks such as clearing trees and branches around power lines to avert contact that triggers wildfires. While the maximum cost of the plan is $350 million, PG&E has said it expects the likely cost will be around $235 million.

Tue, 23 Apr 2019 19:18:41 -0400
Elizabeth Warren's plan to end student debt is glorious. We can make it a reality

Elizabeth Warren's plan to end student debt is glorious. We can make it a realityWe fully support the 2020 nominees student debt relief proposal. But to make it happen, well need to kick our efforts into higher gear Elizabeth Warrens proposal is a stunning, visionary plan that would transform our educational system and dramatically improve millions of peoples lives. Photograph: Rick Bowmer/AP This week, Elizabeth Warren, who is running for the 2020 Democratic nomination for president, announced a proposal to cancel student debt for millions of people and make public college free. This is a stunning, visionary plan that would transform our educational system and dramatically improve millions of peoples lives. But like every other progressive proposal now being touted by presidential hopefuls, from Medicare for All to the Green New Deal, the call for debt relief and free education first came from the grassroots. And if we want a real student debt jubilee to actually happen to go from policy paper to reality the grassroots will need to continue to push for it. Fortunately, its a battle that can be won. Raising our voices is how we got this far. Ten years ago, student debt, even as it soared, was not seen as a serious issue. Writers including Tamara Draut and Anya Kamenetz were early to sound the alarm, exposing young peoples disproportionate indebtedness as a structural issue. Scholars such as Darrick Hamilton and Tressie McMillan Cottom would later go on to document the racially disparate impact of student loans, which burden women and people of color most of all. But it took the Occupy Wall Street movement to make public how profoundly the pinch of monthly payments was felt by an entire generation. Sign up to receive the latest US opinion pieces every weekday In April 2012 a group of Occupiers organized a 1T Day protest to mark the day student debt in America surpassed $1tn. Seven years later, that number has ballooned to more than $1.5tn. That protest represented a watershed moment, the point when student debt went from being a personal problem to a political one, the result of decades of disinvestment in public colleges and universities that turned education into a consumer product instead of a public good. Some of the organizers of that event would go on to help launch the Debt Collective, a union for debtors that I co-founded. We kicked things off with the Rolling Jubilee fund, a public education campaign that bought and cancelled more than $30m in medical, student debt, payday loans and private probation debts. Then, in 2015, the Debt Collective launched the countrys first student debt strike. Since the strike was announced, we have won more than $1bn (and counting) in student debt cancellation for people who attended fraudulent for-profit colleges. Our team accomplished this by building a membership base of for-profit borrowers themselves. These debtors, a multiracial group of working-class people from across the country, led a campaign to pressure the Department of Education to cancel their loans. Their victory and the fact that our primary demand of a debt jubilee and free college is now on Warrens platform demonstrates the power of grassroots organizing. The precedent-setting significance of the Debt Collectives work is clear and cannot be overstated: Warren knows that student loans can be cancelled because they already have been on a smaller scale for for-profit college borrowers. That said, Warrens plan, as bold as it is, is hardly inevitable. Her proposal of canceling student debt and ensuring free college seems contingent on the passage of a millionaires tax that, barring a miracle, is likely to be stymied by an intransigent Congress. In order to win a jubilee, then, we will have to kick our grassroots efforts into a higher gear. Debtors must continue to fight for their rights and advocate for the best possible solutions. We are preparing to do just that. Since 2016, along with our partners at Harvard Law Schools Project on Predatory Student Lending, we have been working out a roadmap that would allow all federal student loans to be cancelled without waiting for Congress to act. Congress, it turns out, has already given administrative agencies the power to cancel debts. Just as the Securities and Exchange Commission can cut low-dollar deals with banks that break the law, for example, the secretary of education can settle with debtors for a fraction of what they owe or suspend the collection of student debt altogether. When it was first given the power to issue and collect student loans in 1958, the Department of Education also received the power to compromise, waive, or release any right to collect on them. And when the Higher Education Act of 1965 made student loan authorities permanent, it solidified their power to compromise. Nothing in the law prevents the secretary of education from using compromise and settlement authority to address the worst effects of decades of failed higher education policy. But only a movement with that as its goal can get us there. Student debt abolition and free college would be a win-win for the entire country To win a jubilee, we need a movement focused on motivating candidates to commit to using the full powers available to them in office to address this emergency and stop collections on all student loans. While millionaires and billionaires should be taxed at a much higher rate, in the short term we should not let a Congress bought off by the super-rich prevent us from doing whats right and legal and economically beneficial. Indeed, student debt abolition and free college would be a win-win for the entire country. Not only would debtors get relief, academic research shows it would be a significant stimulus that might supercharge the economy and help address the racial wealth gap. Money currently used to pay back loans with interest would be redirected to other goods and services. But the win would be more profound than just an economic boost. Education could finally be a public good and not a commodity (or worse, a debt trap). This transformation would help inaugurate a new political vision that redefines liberty as the ability to freely access the social services that we all need to survive and thrive. The Debt Collective has been leading this fight for years and our growing membership will continue to do so. Grassroots organizing is what got us this far, and its the only thing that can get us to the finish line: an end to student debt and free public college for everyone, once and for all. Astra Taylor is a writer, organizer, and documentarian. Her books include the American Book Award winner The Peoples Platform: Taking Back Power and Culture in the Digital Age and Democracy May Not Exist, but Well Miss It When Its Gone. Her most recent film is What Is Democracy?

Wed, 24 Apr 2019 06:00:18 -0400
'Marsquake' detected for first time, Nasa says

'Marsquake' detected for first time, Nasa saysNasa has detected a probable "Marsquake" for the first time. The suspected seismic event on the Red Planet was recorded using silicon sensors developed in the UK. A dome-shaped apparatus known as Seismic Experiment for Interior Structure [SEIS] landed on Mars last year equipped with the sensors, which were built with 4 million in funding from the UK Space Agency Nasa said the measuring of the quake, which occurred on April 6, marked the "birth of a new discipline - Martian seismology". Chris Skidmore, the science minister, said it was a "testament to the UKs world leading science and engineering space sector". Professor Tom Pike of Imperial College London, leading the UK contribution, said: "This is what we were all waiting for, the first quivering of the planet picked up by our sensors. Our first investigation of the interior of another planet is now underway." Mars is not nearly as geologically active as Earth and, like our moon, lacks tectonic plates. An image of the Martian surface from Nasa's Curiosity Rover Credit: EPA But thousands of "moonquakes" were detected on the lunar surface between 1969 and 1977 using equipment installed there by Nasa's Apollo missions. The French space agency Cnes, which operates SEIS, said there had been a "weak but distinct seismic signal" on Mars which could shed light on the ancient origins of Earth's neighbour. It added: "We've waited for our first Martian quake for months." The tremor was so faint that an earthquake of the same magnitude in southern California would be virtually lost among the dozens of tiny seismological events that occur there every day, Nasa said.

Tue, 23 Apr 2019 17:50:55 -0400
Ukraine defies anti-Semitic past with Zelensky victory

Ukraine defies anti-Semitic past with Zelensky victoryComedian Volodymyr Zelensky's election will see Ukraine led for the first time by a president of Jewish descent, in a landmark for a country with a long history of anti-Semitism. The 41-year-old actor won a landslide victory against incumbent Petro Poroshenko on Sunday. Ukraine already has a Jewish prime minister, Volodymyr Groysman, also 41, and who is to remain in office pending parliamentary elections scheduled for October.

Tue, 23 Apr 2019 10:12:12 -0400
Samsung cancels Galaxy Fold events in China amid malfunctioning screen claims

Samsung cancels Galaxy Fold events in China amid malfunctioning screen claimsJust days after reports surfaced about malfunctioning Galaxy Fold smartphones, Samsung delays roll out of the foldable-screen device in China.

Tue, 23 Apr 2019 09:11:47 -0400
Iran FM proposes swap for jailed British national

Iran FM proposes swap for jailed British nationalIran's foreign minister on Wednesday proposed a prisoner swap for a British-Iranian mother detained in Tehran, saying the United States should drop charges against an Iranian woman it is seeking in Australia. Britain has been trying unsuccessfully to free Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, a dual national who worked for the Thomson Reuters Foundation and was arrested in 2016. Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif drew a parallel to Negar Ghodskani, an Iranian woman who was arrested by Australia in 2017 and separated from her newborn child as the United States asks for her extradition.

Wed, 24 Apr 2019 16:23:17 -0400
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