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Embattled Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein wins case at US Supreme Court

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Rod Rosenstein, the No. 2 U.S. Justice Department official who has come under criticism from President Donald Trump, picked up a legal victory for Trump’s administration at the Supreme Court on Monday in the first case he ever argued there.

In a 5-3 ruling in favor of the administration, the high court rejected convicted drug dealer Adaucto Chavez-Meza’s bid to reduce his sentence by six months.

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Deputy Attorney General Rosenstein’s 30-minute oral argument in April was a break from his regular job, which includes overseeing Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into potential collusion between Trump’s campaign and Russia in the 2016 U.S. election. Trump’s criticism of Rosenstein has been part of the president’s effort to paint Mueller’s investigation as a witch hunt.

The court, in a ruling authored by liberal Justice Stephen Breyer, said the judge in Chavez-Meza’s case had given an adequate explanation for his decision not to reduce the sentence.

“Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein was honored to argue before the Supreme Court, and we are pleased with the decision,” Justice Department spokeswoman Kerri Kupec said.

Chavez-Meza, 25, a legal immigrant from Mexico, worked with the Mexico-based Sinaloa drug cartel and was arrested in New Mexico in 2012 and charged with possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute. He is serving a sentence of 9-1/2 years.

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Rosenstein’s fellow Trump appointee Neil Gorsuch did not participate in the case.

Reporting by Lawrence Hurley; Editing by Will Dunham


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Science now supports the deadly serious warnings the Victorians gave about sleep

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“Sleeplessness is one of the torments of our age and generation.” You might presume that this is a quote from a contemporary commentator, and no wonder: the World Health Organisation has diagnosed a global epidemic of sleeplessness, and it is difficult to escape accounts, both popular and scientific, of the dangers to health of our 24/7 lifestyle in the modern digital age. But it was actually the neurologist Sir William Broadbent who wrote these words, in 1900.

So our concerns are evidently far from new. The Victorian era experienced not only the extraordinary upheavals of the industrial revolution, but also the arrival of gas and then electric lighting, turning night into day. The creation of an international telegraph network similarly revolutionised systems of communication, establishing global connectivity and, for groups such as businessmen, financiers and politicians, a flow of telegrams at all hours.

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The new Rambo movie is essentially a MAGA fever dream of bigotry

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"Rambo: Last Blood," the latest in the long-running franchise about a traumatized war veteran (Sylvester Stallone) turned on-demand badass, is less an escapist action movie and more a dramatized manifestation of the most notorious sentences from Donald Trump's presidential campaign announcement speech: "They're bringing drugs. They're bringing crime. They're rapists. And some, I assume, are good people." Even for a series that has always been shaped by a right wing worldview, the only reason for this latest sequel to exist — besides generating profits from die-hard Stallone fans — is to validate MAGA-world bigotries about Mexicans.This article first appeared in Salon.

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University of Texas Rio Grande Valley to provide free tuition for students with household incomes under $75,000

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The tuition assistance program is expected to cover tuition and fees for about half of UTRGV students in the 2020-2021 academic year.

Beginning in the next academic year, the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley will provide free tuition and cover mandatory fees for qualifying students with household incomes under $75,000, the university announced Monday.

The UTRGV Tuition Advantage program is expected to alleviate tuition costs for more than half of the university's 21,459 undergraduate students, UTRGV President Guy Bailey said in the release. Funding will be available to incoming, returning and transfer in-state undergraduate students.

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