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House Passes More Tax Cuts

House passes tax-cut bills despite unlikely Senate action. CNBC: "A three-bill legislative package known as Tax Reform 2.0 cleared the GOP-dominated House during votes on Thursday and Friday. While the legislation is expected to be dead on arrival in the Senate, some proposed changes to retirement savings could remain in play. While supporters say a second round of tax cuts would lead to continued economic growth, critics point to its $627 billion price tag over the next 10 years, based on an analysis by the Joint Committee on Taxation. That's on top of the $1.5 trillion the already-passed cuts are projected to cost during the same period. House GOP leaders were committed to pushing the tax bills through this month before members head to their districts to campaign ahead of the November midterm elections. Even if most of the provisions in the House bills end up shelved, they could be revived next year when a new Congress is in place or at another time, depending on the balance of power."

Migrant Children Moved To Tent Cities

Migrant children moved under cover of darkness to Texas tent city. NYT: "In shelters from Kansas to New York, hundreds of migrant children have been roused in the middle of the night in recent weeks and loaded onto buses with backpacks and snacks for a cross-country journey to their new home: a barren tent city on a sprawling patch of desert in West Texas. Until now, most undocumented children being held by federal immigration authorities had been housed in private foster homes or shelters, sleeping two or three to a room. They received formal schooling and regular visits with legal representatives assigned to their immigration cases. But in the rows of sand-colored tents in Tornillo, Tex., children in groups of 20, separated by gender, sleep lined up in bunks. There is no school: The children are given workbooks that they have no obligation to complete. Access to legal services is limited. These midnight voyages are playing out across the country, as the federal government struggles to find room for more than 13,000 detained migrant children — the largest population ever — whose numbers have increased more than fivefold since last year."

Eight-Seat SCOTUS Opens New Session

Short-seated Supreme Court starts hearing arguments Monday. CNBC: "On Monday, only eight justices will assemble at the Supreme Court building. The last time the justices started a term with a vacancy was in 2016, following the death of Justice Antonin Scalia. The court's upcoming term may lack the fireworks of the last, during which the court handed down blockbuster rulings on public sector unions, sexual orientation discrimination, and Trump's travel ban. On Monday the court will hear arguments on two cases: Mount Lemmon Fire District v. Guido and Weyerhaeuser Company v. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, or the "frog case.' In Mount Lemmon, the opening case of the term, two former fire fighters have brought suit against a small Arizona fire district, alleging that they were discriminated against because of their age (one of the men was 46, and the other was 54). The Mount Lemmon fire district has said that the layoffs were forced by a budget shortfall so intense the district resorted to bake sales. It will argue that the age discrimination statute doesn't apply, because it has so few employees. The case has not sparked much political handwringing, and largely focuses on a narrow technical issue. The Solicitor General and the AARP have both weighed in on behalf of the former fire fighters. The other case set for argument Monday may prove a bit more contentious. The so-called "frog case" has brought to the fore the plight of the dusky gopher frog, an embattled three-inch amphibian facing population decline for years. The population of approximately 100 adult frogs now mostly live around a single pond in Mississippi. The government has a plan to resuscitate the dusky gopher frog by relocating it to some of its historical breeding grounds. That has put it at odds with the Weyerhaeuser Company, a homebuilding giant and one of the world's largest private owners of timberlands. The company happens to own some of the land the government designated "critical" for the frog's unusual breeding habits in 2012."

WI Candidate Evers Supports BadgerCare For All

Evers says he hopes to implement 'BadgerCare for All' program by end of first term if elected. The Cap Times: "Democratic candidate for governor Tony Evers said Friday he would like to make BadgerCare available to all Wisconsin residents by the end of his first term, although he did not commit to doing so. Evers fielded questions from reporters after encouraging Madison voters to casts their ballots early, with a focus on young voters. 'At some point in time the public option has to be there,' Evers told reporters when asked about his plans for health care coverage. Democratic lawmakers have previously proposed allowing all Wisconsinites to buy into BadgerCare, the state's health care coverage program for low-income Wisconsin residents. A 'BadgerCare for All' bill, introduced last year by Rep. Eric Genrich, D-Green Bay, and Sen. LaTonya Johnson, D-Milwaukee, would have made BadgerCare a public option available to anyone in Wisconsin through the federal health insurance exchange. Similar proposals have been introduced at the federal level, for Medicare, with support from Democrats. BadgerCare was created under Republican former Gov. Tommy Thomson as a way to give health care coverage to low-income Wisconsin residents who made too much money to qualify for Medicaid."

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Will the FBI’s Kavanaugh Probe Be a White House Coverup? Miles Mogulescu: "If you want to discover the truth instead of cover it up, would you appoint the accused’s lawyer to supervise and control the investigation of the charges against him? That’s exactly what the Trump White House and Senate Republicans are doing with the one-week FBI investigation. They’ve appointed White House Counsel Don McGahn to oversee the FBI investigation, determine its scope, and authorize, or refuse to authorize whom the FBI may interview. McGahn is the Federalist Society insider and White House counsel who steered Trump to pick Kavanaugh from the list of Far-Right Supreme Court candidates the Society put on his desk. He has since been in charge of shepherding Kavanaugh’s nomination through the Senate. He has spent days behind doors in the White House, coaching Kavanaugh on what and how to testify. If you remember Francis Ford Coppola’s Godfather movies, this is a bit like putting Corleone family consigliere Tom Hagen in charge of an FBI investigation of the Don."

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