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Assault Weapons Ban Is Gun Debate's First Casualty

The prospects of an assault weapons ban emerging as part of any post-Newtown gun control law looks highly unlikely after Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid opted not to include it in a Democratic proposal to be offered on the Senate floor in coming weeks.

"My understanding is it will not be [part of the base bill]" to be introduced on the Senate floor, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., said after meeting with Reid on Monday, according to Politico. "The leader has decided not to do it."

Feinstein's bill, which would ban more than 150 specific assault-style weapons, passed the Senate Judiciary Committee last week on 10-8 party-line vote. It can still be offered as an amendment to the measure that will reach the Senate floor. But that could be an even tougher road to passage.

Feinstein authored the 1994 assault weapons ban, which expired 10 years later when Congress failed to reauthorize it. Her bill is among several measures introduced in the new Congress in response to the Dec. 14 shooting deaths of 20 children and six educators at an elementary school in Newtown, Conn.

Reid, a Democrat from Nevada, has been reluctant to back gun control measures in the past. Politico reports:

"Reid's decision highlights the tightrope walked by the majority leader in governing the gun control issue. Trapped between the White House and rank-and-file Democrats who support broad gun control legislation following the shootings last December in Newtown, Conn., Reid must also be mindful of red-state Democrats up for reelection in 2014 who favor gun rights."

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What The African American History Museum Means to D.C.'s Black Community

This weekend, D.C. celebrated the opening of the National Museum of African American History and Culture. Kojo chats with the civil rights leader and longtime city council member who chaired the D.C. host committee.

NPR

They Dreamed Of Sheep (Farming): Peek Inside An Alabama Dairy

Greg Kelly wanted out of corporate America for a lifestyle better suited to raising a family. So he and his wife launched Alabama's only sheep dairy. "We feel like we're really living now," she says.
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Protecting Our Data In An Era Of Increasing State-Sponsored Cyberattacks

Yahoo says information from 500 million users was stolen by hackers. This comes amid growing concern over intrusions into U.S. election systems. In an era of increasing state-sponsored cyber threats, protecting our personal data and the integrity of U.S. voting.

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Putting The Patient At The Center Of Local Healthcare

From "concierge" services to iPads connecting new parents with their babies in the nursery, Kojo explores some of the patient-centered ideas coming from healthcare innovation labs at local hospitals.

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