The first gun-related provisions to pass Congress since the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting were riders included without debate. These same provisions — which limit how federal agencies deal with guns — have been regularly included in spending bills for years.
Congress on Thursday approved stopgap funding legislation that includes language explicitly granting the USDA authority to override a judge's ruling against genetically modified crops. Critics denounce the measure as the "Monsanto Protection Act." But it seems to be codifying powers the USDA already has exercised in the past.
Police officers testifying at a federal trial challenging New York City's policy say they were ordered to increase their number of arrests, summons and 250s — the code for stop, question and frisk. The city says these were simply performance goals.
Four major drilling companies, including Shell and Chevron, and several environmental groups have agreed on 15 voluntary standards for cleaner drilling practices in the Appalachian Basin. But some environmental groups are skeptical about the effort because the standards are voluntary.
Melissa Block talks to University of South Carolina political scientist Mark Tompkins about Republican Mark Sanford and Democrat Elizabeth Colbert Busch, who are running for Congress in the state. Sanford is a former governor who said he was hiking the Appalachian Trail in 2009 when he was actually having an extramarital affair in Argentina. Colbert Busch is the sister of late-night comedian, Stephen Colbert.
Edith Windsor's challenge to the Defense of Marriage Act will be heard by the Supreme Court next week. When her wife died, Windsor had to pay $363,000 in estate taxes because the federal government did not recognize their marriage. "If Thea was Theo," she says, "I would not have had to pay."
Some Colorado doctors who've treated victims of recent mass shootings and everyday gun violence say they're deeply disturbed by and opposed to guns. But other doctors don't support the new gun restrictions lawmakers are talking about in Denver and Washington, D.C.
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