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Trump administration to allow religious employers to deny birth control to their staff: report

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President Donald Trump’s administration is poised to kill the Affordable Care Act’s “birth control mandate” that requires employers to offer birth control on their insurance, the New York Times reported.

Trump could deliver the new rules as early as Friday and put in jeopardy the free and low-cost birth control afforded to over 55 million people in the US.

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The controversial mandate was at the heart of the Hobby Lobby Supreme Court case when the religious employer argued that being required to provide birth control to their employees violated their religious freedom.

Such exceptions are the target of at least one of the rules, which “offers an exemption to any employer or insurer that objects to covering contraceptive services ‘based on its sincerely held religious beliefs.'”

Trump’s anti-abortion campaign promises appeared close to fulfillment in May, when he appointed a “birth control czar” that was a former lobbyist with the National Right to Live Committee and a legislative analyst for the Family Research Council, the Washington Post reported at the time.


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California lawmaker who chaired Republican Assembly caucus leaving GOP — to become an independent: report

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On Thursday, the Sacramento Bee reported that California Assemblyman Chad Mayes, the former Assembly Minority Leader, is leaving the Republican Party and registering as No Party Preference.

"Instead of focusing on solutions for the big problems that we've got, we focused on winning elections," said Mayes in his announcement. "For me, I'm at the point in my life where I'm done with gamesmanship."

Mayes, a controversial figure who was implicated in an affair with a fellow public official, represents Yucca Valley. He is the second Republican Assemblyman this year to leave the party, after Brian Maienschein of San Diego, who Maienschein of San Diego.

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‘Quantum physics generator’ incident in Ohio results in evacuation — hazmat found no radiation

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Authorities in Columbus, Ohio evacuated dozens of homes after a man called 911 to report being burned by a

"Firefighters say nothing threatening was found in a northwest Columbus garage," WCMH-TV reported. "According to firefighters, a man called and reported that he received ‘RF burns’ while building some sort of ‘quantum physics generator’ in a garage. The man used words like ‘particle accelerator,’ ‘alpha rays,’ and ‘radiation’ while describing how he was burned."

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Trump spoke with Giuliani on unsecured phones that were vulnerable to Russian surveillance: report

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On Thursday, the Washington Post reported that President Donald Trump has communicated with his lawyer Rudy Giuliani via unsecured and unencrypted phone lines that are potentially vulnerable to interception and monitoring by Russian intelligence officials and other hostile foreign powers.

"Trump is not identified by name in the House phone records, but investigators said they suspect he may be a person with a blocked number listed as '-1' in the files," stated the report. "And administration officials said separately that Trump has communicated regularly with Giuliani on unsecured lines."

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