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Senate approves veterans jobs aid

WASHINGTON — The normally polarized US Senate united Thursday to approve a measure aimed at helping US armed forces veterans who fought in Iraq and Afghanistan to get jobs, and aiding government contractors. The overwhelming 95-0 vote set the stage for the legislation’s approval by the House of Representatives, which…

Senate rejects resolution scrapping ‘net neutrality’

WASHINGTON — The US Senate rejected a resolution on Thursday seeking to overturn “net neutrality” rules aimed at ensuring an open Internet. The Republican-backed resolution, which the White House had threatened to veto, was defeated by 52 votes to 46 in the Democratic-controlled Senate. The Republican-controlled House of Representatives approved…

Reports: Obama admin. delays tar sands decision until after election

The Obama administration plans to move a key decision on whether to approve the massive Keystone XL tar sands pipeline until after the 2012 presidential election, according to reports late Thursday that cited administration insiders. While an official announcement was expected sometime this week, administration sources told USA Today and…

Franken rebukes marriage inequality: Straight people won’t suddenly ‘become gay’

At hearing Thursday for a bill that would repeal the federal ban on same sex marriage, Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) encouraged his Republican colleagues not to worry because “straight people aren’t suddenly going to become gay.” “The suffering that [the Defense of Marriage Act] DOMA causes and will cause is…

GOP Sen. claims equal rights are just too expensive

Why shouldn’t same sex couples have equal rights? According to Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX), it’s because equality is just too expensive. “Repealing the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) would actually result in an expansion of federal benefits and spending at a time when we know that federal spending is way…

West Hollywood endorses first fur ban in the U.S.

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Putting animal rights over fashion and its own vibrant shopping scene, West Hollywood’s leaders voted to approve on Tuesday a first-in-the-nation ban on the sale of fur clothing within city limits. The five-member City Council of the tiny, tony municipality wedged between Beverly Hills and Hollywood…

Utah drops accomplice to rape case against polygamist Warren Jeffs

SALT LAKE CITY (Reuters) – A Utah judge dismissed accomplice to rape charges against polygamist leader Warren Jeffs on Wednesday at the request of prosecutors, who said pursuing the case was unnecessary given his life prison term in Texas. A Utah jury had found Jeffs, leader of a breakaway Mormon…

Stephen King boosting winter heating aid in Maine

CONWAY, Mass (Reuters) – Suspense author Stephen King is scaring up money to help low-income residents in his home state of Maine after federal funding cuts for heating programs serving residents who are poor, disabled or elderly. The Stephen and Tabitha King Foundation is working with the three Bangor, Maine,…

Florida debuts new prison dorms for U.S. veterans

ORLANDO, Fla (Reuters) – Marvin Hurst, 59, makes his bunk with military precision, snaps to attention for the morning flag-raising ceremony and follows orders all day long. But home is no Army barracks. Hurst, who served in the U.S. Army from 1973-74, is one of 300 prisoners housed in the…

Mayor of St. Louis’s website hacked by ‘Occupy Wall St’ sympathizer

ST. LOUIS (Reuters) – A hacker broke into the mayor of St. Louis’s website and posted a message in support of anti-Wall Street protesters who are facing eviction from a city park they occupied five weeks ago. “You can remove the movement from the city, but you cannot remove the…

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