April 19, 2013
WEDNESDAY'S Senate vote on CRIMINAL background checks was "shameful," but maybe not in the same way President Obama put it. I think he was talking about how a minority of senators - the vote was 54-46, but 60 votes were required - turned their backs on the Sandy Hook parents, and other gun-violence victims, who had been brought in to lobby Congress. The pro-gun forces complained they were used as "props. " That's harsh, but true. That's part of 21st century PR. Both sides do it. I find it shameful because we are a representative democracy and one fact those opposing the CRIMINAL background check couldn't wave away is that 90 percent of Americans wanted the existing CRIMINAL background check expanded to cover gun shows and Internet sales.
April 19, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - The Senate rejected a bipartisan plan cosponsored by Pennsylvania's Pat Toomey that would have expanded background checks for gun purchases in one of several votes Wednesday that brought a crashing halt to the legislative push for new gun laws. Gun-rights advocates also defeated bills that would have banned assault weapons and limited the size of gun magazines, while lawmakers favoring gun control stopped Republican plans to loosen gun laws, once again exposing deep rifts on the issue.
April 18, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - The U.S. immigration system would undergo dramatic changes under a bipartisan Senate bill that puts a new focus on prospective immigrants' merit and employment potential, while seeking to end illegal immigration once and for all by creating legal avenues for workers to come here. The bill would put the 11 million immigrants in the country illegally on a 13-year path to U.S. citizenship that would cost each $2,000 in fines plus additional fees, and would begin only after steps have been taken to secure the border, according to an outline of the measure.
April 17, 2013 |
TRENTON - Nearly two months after the Assembly passed 22 bills aimed at curbing gun violence, the Senate is hashing out details for a separate package that so far does not include the lower chamber's controversial bill to further restrict the number of bullets in a magazine. Senate President Stephen Sweeney (D., Gloucester), who had planned to introduce his chamber's final bills Monday, said some of the measures were still being revised. Although no draft bills were available, Sweeney said the centerpiece would create a state electronic database that would encode handgun and hunting rifle permits on a gun owner's license or state-issued identification card, allowing for instant background checks.
April 16, 2013 |
When a witness at a March Senate hearing on small business accused state and local governments of not doing enough to prepare for disasters, he got a sharp retort from the committee chair. "You're talking, with all due respect, to a person who had a whole city go under water," said Mary Landrieu, the Louisiana Democrat who heads the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship, as she rejected a charge that state and local officials are not inclined to prepare for disasters because they expect financial help from the federal government.
April 15, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - After one of the most remarkable announcements of his public career, Pennsylvania Sen. Pat Toomey sat down in his office with the parents of some of the children killed in the Newtown shootings. Clutching photos of their loved ones, they thanked him. Toomey, a Republican best known for his focus on fiscal issues, had become an unlikely catalyst for advancing the most significant new gun law in two decades. That morning, he had announced a deal with Sen. Joe Manchin (D., W.Va.)
April 14, 2013
Craig Anderson made 33 saves in his third shutout of the season, and the Senators sent the sliding Devils to their ninth straight loss with a 2-0 victory Friday. Jean-Gabriel Pageau and Milan Michalek scored second-period goals for the Senators, who won for the second straight night, following a five-game skid, to boost their playoff chances. Ottawa, in sixth place in the Eastern Conference, leads ninth-place Winnipeg by four points. New Jersey is 10th, eight points behind Ottawa and four behind the Rangers and the postseason cutoff with seven games to play.
April 14, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - A promised path to citizenship for the 11 million immigrants in the United States illegally may leave out hundreds of thousands of them. Bipartisan Senate legislation would make legalization and ultimately citizenship available only to those who arrived in the United States before Dec. 31, 2011, according to a Senate aide with knowledge of the proposals. Anyone who came after that date would be subject to deportation. The bill, expected to be introduced next week, also would require applicants to document that they were in the country before the cutoff date, have a clean criminal record and show enough employment or financial stability that they're likely to stay off welfare, said the aide, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the proposals had not been made public.
April 12, 2013 |
Goalie Ilya Bryzgalov did not sleep on Thursday night. The Flyers offense did. Bryzgalov was brilliant, but the Flyers were virtually knocked out of the Eastern Conference playoff picture by a team that had lost five straight. Colin Greening scored on a breakaway power-play goal with 5 minutes, 36 seconds left, snapping a 1-1 tie and giving Ottawa a 3-1 win at the Wells Fargo Center. Greening took a pass from Patrick Wiercioch and scored on a high shot while Claude Giroux was serving a four-minute penalty for high-sticking Mika Zibanejad with 6:07 remaining in regulation.