News

States criticized for spending federal relief funds on tax cuts, prisons

BY: - February 4, 2023

As states plan how they’ll spend the $25 billion remaining in federal COVID relief funds, some also are facing criticism and renewed scrutiny over how they allocated money already received from the American Rescue Plan Act. Of the $198 billion authorized by Congress in 2021, $173 billion already has been appropriated by states, the District […]

Chinese surveillance balloon now drifting across the middle of the U.S., Pentagon confirms

BY: - February 3, 2023

This post was updated 4:30 p.m. Feb. 3 with comments from the Pentagon. WASHINGTON — U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken will postpone his planned trip to Beijing after the U.S. detected a Chinese surveillance balloon hovering over Montana. A senior State Department official said Friday that despite the Chinese government claiming the balloon had […]

Rural Georgia lawmaker wants Legislature to settle stink raised by casting sludge upon the soil

BY: - February 3, 2023

Tankers hauling mystery sludge have been a common – and unwelcome – sight in rural Wilkes County for more than a decade, regularly filling the country air with a putrid aroma. But those haulers have been skipping past Wilkes County lately. That probably has something to do with a fish kill last summer that attracted […]

U.S. House agrees on something: Lawmakers condemn ‘the horrors of socialism’

BY: - February 2, 2023

WASHINGTON — The U.S. House held a strongly bipartisan vote Thursday, condemning socialism and former socialist leaders, though Democrats rebuked majority Republicans for spending time on a “political stunt” and refusing to allow debate on an amendment that would have clarified Social Security and Medicare are not socialist programs. Maryland Democratic Rep. Steny Hoyer said he lamented […]

U.S. House GOP votes to oust Rep. Omar from foreign affairs panel for past antisemitic remarks

BY: - February 2, 2023

WASHINGTON — The U.S. House voted along party lines Thursday to remove Minnesota Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar from the Foreign Affairs Committee for past antisemitic statements. The removal, the first for a Democrat during this session of Congress, followed Democrats’ vote to strip two Republicans of all their committee assignments last Congress for making threats against fellow […]

Banker Johnny Chastain defeats Ralston widow in special election; N.E. Georgia House seat goes to runoff

BY: - February 1, 2023

North Georgia banker Johnny Chastain will be the newest Republican state representative from north Georgia, winning Tuesday’s runoff election and ending Sheree Ralston’s bid to succeed  her late husband in the House chamber. House District 7 – which encompasses Blue Ridge, Ellijay and several surrounding communities in north Georgia – was led by late House […]

Legalized sports betting, horse racing quick out of the gate as Georgia Senate readies opening bid

BY: - February 1, 2023

A Georgia Senate committee is expected to consider a bill next week that opens the door to legalized online sports betting. Republican Sen. Billy Hickman’s SB 57 is the first of what could be several gambling bills up for consideration this year after failed attempts in recent years. In the bill, a Georgia Sports Betting […]

U.S. House Judiciary’s debut hearing on the border centers on blame for fentanyl crisis

BY: - February 1, 2023

WASHINGTON — U.S. House Republicans on the Judiciary Committee blamed the Biden administration for fentanyl drug smuggling at the U.S.-Mexico border during a Wednesday hearing. Chair Jim Jordan of Ohio also blamed U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas for the number of migrants at the border, and said there are already hundreds of […]

Biden, McCarthy hold ‘productive’ and ‘frank’ debt limit talks as fiscal cliffs loom

BY: - February 1, 2023

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden and U.S. House Speaker Kevin McCarthy huddled behind closed doors at the White House on Wednesday in the first of what will likely be several conversations as the country approaches two fiscal cliffs this year amid divided government. The top issue at the moment is when and how to address […]

Billions in federal farm payments flow to a select group of producers, report shows

BY: - February 1, 2023

WASHINGTON — The top 10% of recipients of federal farm payments raked in more than 79% of total subsidies over the last 25 years — producing billions of dollars for a relatively small group of U.S. producers, according to a new analysis of federal data from an environmental group. In total, the federal government paid more […]

Of more than 7,500 threats against members of Congress in 2022, just 22 prosecuted

BY: - February 1, 2023

WASHINGTON —  Members of Congress receive thousands of threats a year, though just a fraction of the people who call, mail or email will ever be prosecuted — a situation that’s of great concern to the police who guard members. Just 22 of the 7,501 threats lobbed at members during 2022 led to prosecution, the […]

New U.S. House Natural Resources chair opposes limits on fossil fuel development

BY: - January 31, 2023

The incoming chairman of the U.S. House Natural Resources Committee wants to allow more mining and believes technology — not limitations on fossil fuel production — is the best way to address climate change. As part of their organization of the chamber they now control, U.S. House Republicans selected Arkansas’ Bruce Westerman to lead the […]