December 2016 News

Below are news items from November 2016. For more current and breaking news items, see the main news page.

12-31-2016: Sweeping changes to Missouri's criminal code take effect Sunday

Editorial note: Justice Dept: Louisiana parish jailed hundreds without charges or probable cause in past three years, including crime witnesses & their relatives, as part of practice going back decades

12-31-2016: In Evangeline Parish arrest scandal, civil liberties took back seat to decades of tradition

12-30-2016: Police Chief takes heat for allowing reality TV show to follow St. Louis detectives

12-30-2016: St. Louis enters third year of DUI "no refusal zone"

Editorial note: I don't drink, so drinking and driving has never been a concern for me, except watching out for those who do. However, I would not want to be made to submit to a breath test and I wonder if this could be unconstitutional. You have a right to remain silent and not produce evidence. Sufficient probable cause is required in order to obtain a search warrant and just refusing a breath test is not sufficient. The "no refusal" seem like punishment for exercising your rights. See Missouri Revised Statute 577.020 concerning implied consent and our related "What are my rights at various checkpoints".

12-30-2016: Clay says he won't remove painting in U.S. Capitol tunnel that has drawn criticism from police, others

12-29-2016: The Prosecutor – The Most Powerful Position in the Criminal Justice System

12-29-2016: Shocking Chart Compares St. Louis Neighborhood to 'World's Murder Capital'

12-28-2016: St. Louis prosecutor says state should take over case in Chain of Rocks murders

12-28-2016: Police say a black man was shot after pulling a blade on officers. A new video raises doubts

12-27-2016: Mother who reported baby missing in Normandy appeared to be on drugs, police say

Editorial noteWhite privilege determines how these cases are prosecuted and reported. Had the woman been black, the news reports would have most certainly reported that Casenet (14SL-CR04309-01) indicates a notice of drug testing and an arrest warrant were issued on 4-29-2014. Elizabeth Hawthorne plead guilty to felony possession of a controlled substance and was sentenced to 5 years incarceration (suspended execution of sentence) and given 5 years probation instead. There would be calls for her probation to be revoked. She is now charged with Abuse Or Neglect Of A Child (16SL-CR09265). We can imagine how this senario would play out in the "injustice system" had this been a woman of color.

free money for college

12-27-2016: Police request Echo recordings for homicide investigation

12-27-2016: Growing number of Americans are retiring outside the US

Editorial note: The cost of living in Mexico is 59% lower than the United States.

12-27-2016: Cop Admits to Throwing 4yo Child Against the Wall, Causing Serious Injury, Gets Slap on the Wrist

12-27-2016: ‘It made me hate the police’: Ugly encounters with officers fuel loss of trust, costly payouts

12-27-2016: State department settles dispute between Missouri State and the University of Missouri

12-26-2016: Former Versace employee says store uses code words for black shoppers

12-26-2016: Charged a Fee for Getting Arrested, Whether Guilty or Not

12-26-2016: Drexel professor draws ire after posting 'White Genocide' tweet on Christmas

12-25-2016: NYPD suspends officer who posted Snapchat photos of family in handcuffs

12-24-2016: Donald Trump vows to shut controversial Trump Foundation

Editorial note: See our "Billionaire Overthrow of U.S. Government" page, which includes a discussion about tax exempt foundations.

12-24-2016: Court Rules Police Can Shoot Your Dog If It “Moves” Or “Barks”

12-23-2016: School to prison pipeline complete – new law makes school yard fights felony

12-23-2016: Nixon on public stadium spending: "It's the price of doing business"

Editorial note: If the only way St. Louis can attract a soccer team is with 120+ million in tax dollars, then the cost of doing business is too high, let the soccer team go to another city.

12-23-2016: University stands by 'Problem of Whiteness' course

Editorial note: See our "White Privilege" page which contains the documentary "White People", whose primary question is, "what's it like to be white?"

12-23-2016: 29 use-of-force complaints on file against Delaware cop, court records show

12-23-2016: Viral Video Depicting Shocking Arrest of Mother Shows 'Reality of Being Black in America'

12-23-2016: How hospitals, nursing homes keep lethal ‘superbug’ outbreaks secret

Editorial note: See our related "Medical Oppression" page where we discuss medical aparthied, experimentation and provide a link to another source that ranked hospital by letter graded A thru F. The results for St. Louis hospitals were surprising, with at least one well respected local hospital receiving a "D" grade.

12-23-2016: US Government Quietly Starts Asking Travelers for Social Media Accounts

12-22-2016: Bruce Franks Jr. sues alleging officers used excessive force in Berkeley arrest

12-22-2016: Tishaura responds to Post smear

12-22-2016: Video shows officer use taser on a 91-year-old man with Alzheimer's man at nursing home

12-22-2016: A black mother told police a white man assaulted her child. They arrested her instead

12-22-2016: She still works for the Missouri prison supervisor who harassed her

12-22-2016: Obama to Dismantle Visitor Registry Before Trump Can Revive It

12-21-2016: Revised MO statute increases punishment on grade school fights

Editorial note: See our related post, "School-to-Prison Pipeline Complete — New Law Makes Schoolyard Fights Felony", This will be yet another mass incarceration tool which will certainly be disproportionaly applied to black students. Parents you need to teach your children to remain silent until they speak with you or an attorney. Requesting a jury trial should be an automatic response when a child is charged unfairly. See our related School to Prison Pipeline page. 

12-21-2016: Nixon says state tax credits are ideal to clear St. Louis site, with or without a soccer stadium

Editorial note: Dowd Bennett, a Clayton law firm, will add Gov. Jay Nixon to their practice next year after his term as Governor expires. I can't help but wonder if any of Dowd Bennett's clients will benefit directly or indirectly from the proposed stadium site.

12-21-2016: St. Louis police union endorses Lyda Krewson for mayor

Editorial note: Most St. Louis Police officers live outside of the city. If they lived here, I could take their recommendation for mayor more seriously. St. Louis is a majority black city, but it's officers are majority white. The fact that most officers are white and live outside of the city makes it seem like an occupying force. Police officers are some of our best paid city employees, but those paychecks are spent in other communities, which weakens our local economy. If more officers were part of the community, their continued presence would be a deterrent to crime. I'm sure in whatever community our officers live, their neighbors feel a little safer knowing a police officer lives nearby.

12-21-2016: Missouri Supreme Court reinstates law license of former St. Louis mayor Freeman Bosley Jr.

12-21-2016: St. Louis prosecutor uncovers 'important evidence' in voter fraud probe, turns over case to feds

12-21-2016: White House: Robots may take half of our jobs, and we should embrace it

Editorial note: For quite so time, we've been warning since half of all jobs in the U.S. are predicted to be eliminated, the need for legal services will be great.

12-21-2016: More Young Americans Are Living With Their Parents Than in Decades

12-21-2016: 'Speak English, You're in America,' Woman Tells Latina Shoppers in Rant Caught on Camera

12-21-2016: 4 bodies found at property of retired N.Y. cop

12-22-2016: Illinois man sues McDonald's for overpriced Extra Value Meal

12-20-2016: Facing continued enrollment declines, St. Louis Public Schools will close two more schools

Editorial note: Visit our "Educational Oppression" page and view Dr. Clark's enlightening comments about public education.

12-20-2016: Former Ferguson jail guard gets four years in prison for allowing inmate escape

12-20-2016: Meeting on tax credits for St. Louis soccer stadium postponed after governor-elect's criticism

12-20-2016: More borrowers are losing Social Security benefits over old student loans

12-19-2016: Pine Lawn fails to fix court problems after poor audit, official says

Editorial note: As we stated last year, "until people educate themselves and become familiar and active within our 'justice' system, justice will remain a concept unavailable to many." Sometimes the only person you can depend on is yourself.

12-19-2016: Gov.-elect Greitens calls public money for St. Louis soccer stadium 'welfare for millionaires'

12-19-2016: Gov.-elect Greitens opposes public funding for St. Louis soccer stadium

12-19-2016: Missouri's new gun law may be changed to keep guns away from people convicted of domestic violence

Editorial note: See related, "Gun Law in Missouri".

12-19-2016: Lynching memorial aims to help U.S. acknowledge a history of terror

Editoriol note: See our related post and pages, "The Willie Lynch Letter", "Another Police Lynching Occurred Yesterday," and "Race Riots"

12-19-2016: Electoral College voters stick with Trump, putting him over the top

Editorial note: Billionaires have officially overthrown the government of the United States.

12-19-2016: Ark. bill introduced to limit food stamps to healthy food

Editorial note: A Missouri Republican legislator proposed similiar measure last year.

12-19-2016: The thousands of U.S. locales where lead poisoning is worse than in Flint

Editorial note: The point isn't that other communities have a worse lead problem, the point is that Flint had a safe source of water and that source was switched even though red flags were raised. See our related post, "A City Full of Black People Poisoned".

12-19-2016: 25th JFK Assassination Secrets Scheduled for 2017 Release

12-19-2016: If the U.S. Won't Pay Its Teachers, China Will

12-18-2016: OxyContin goes global — “We’re only just getting started”

12-18-2016: Michigan unemployment agency made 20,000 false fraud accusations – report

12-17-2016: Jury awards $2.5 million civil penalty in deadly police chase across Poplar Street Bridge

12-17-2016: Texas Begins $350M in Medicaid Cuts; Disabled Children Affected

12-17-2016: Pharmaceutical executives accused of bribing doctors to 'unnecessarily prescribe' fentanyl

Editorial note: More than a half dozen pharmaceutical executives and managers were taken into custody by federal officials this month on charges that they "led a nationwide conspiracy to bribe medical practitioners to unnecessarily prescribe a fentanyl-based pain medication and defraud healthcare insurers.

12-17-2016: CBD hemp oil named a Schedule I drug by DEA

Editorial note: Schedule I drugs, the same category as heroin, LSD, ecstasy, meth, peyote and marijuana are substances, or chemicals that are defined as drugs with no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse, according to the DEA website. Just because a state may have legalized marijuana, it's still illegal under federal law. The Trump administration reverse course from the Obama's and target marijuana users and sellers. 

12-16-2016: Messenger: Discrimination complaints cut through blue code of silence in St. Louis

12-16-2016: Grand juror in Darren Wilson case must remain silent, St. Louis County judge rules

12-16-2016: St. Louis aldermen approve development measures on SLU, City Foundry

12-16-2016: St. Louis aldermen approve Ballpark Village incentives

12-16-2016: Judge, defendant and paralyzed victim agree that shooting of Cardinals' fan in St. Louis was senseless

Editorial note: Most people do not realize that you can be convicted more than once for the same crime. A sentence of 35 years was given in Federal Court and a sentence of 40 years was given in State Court. See, "Federal Prosecution of Gun Crimes, The New Mass Incarceration Tool?"

12-16-2016: F.B.I. Monitored Muhammad Ali Connections to Nation of Islam

Editorial note: Since we know about the FBI's war on black people and COINTELPRO, this revelation is not surprising. See our post, "Muhammad Ali: Humanity's Champion".

12-16-2016: U.S. to disclose estimate of number of Americans under surveillance

12-16-2016: FBI in agreement with CIA that Russia aimed to help Trump win White House

Editorial note: See our recently added page, "Billonaire Overthrow of U.S. Government"

12-16-2016: Prenda Law “copyright trolls” Steele and Hansmeier arrested

Editorial note: If you've ever downloaded porn, you might want to see how this law firm extorted millions from porn downloaders.

12-16-2016: Denver PD Defends Officers Who Confiscated Blankets From Homeless

12-15-2016: Messenger: End of Slay's term as St. Louis mayor looks a lot like the beginning

12-15-2016: Banker convicted of felonies in 1995 now doing business with St. Louis treasurer

Editorial note: Two years ago the City of St. Louis adopted a "ban the box" policy to give deserving people a second chance. 

12-15-2016: On guns, governors, cities and mayors

12-15-2016: Business group slams St. Louis circuit court system as most unfair in nation

12-15-2016: More taxpayer help sought for developers of former Northwest Plaza site

12-15-2016: Missouri prison chief quits in wake of reports of harassment, retaliation among staff

12-15-2016: World Energy Hits a Turning Point: Solar That's Cheaper Than Wind

12-15-2016: Man who was wrongly imprisoned for 31 years gets $75 in compensation

12-15-2016: What does it take to get a police officer punished?

12-15-2016: Ex-Milwaukee Officer Charged in Fatal Shooting of Black Man

12-15-2016: Dylann Roof guilty in Charleston church shooting

12-15-2016: Video: He was naked, unarmed and tripping on LSD. Police ordered their K-9 to attack him.

12-15-2016: Border Patrol Agent Charged With Bribery for Running Drugs

12-15-2016: City spends $1.5 million to defend cop cocaine test

Editorial note: The controversial hair test is alleged to discriminate against black officers.

12-15-2016: Police killing of unarmed, 73-year-old grandfather sparks anger, anguish

Editorial note: See related post, "My 87 Year Old Father Fears Police". Dad just celebrated his 88th birthday this week!

12-15-2016: Houston police chief wants body cameras that automatically record

12-15-2016: Dozens of Miami Cops Aren't Uploading Their Body Cam Footage

12-15-2016: A 20-year toll: 368 gymnasts allege sexual exploitation

12-15-2016: Corpus Christi officials: Don't drink or use tap water

12-15-2016: Obama Signs Law Protecting Consumers' Right To Post Reviews

12-15-2016: President Obama signs nationwide ticket-bot ban into law

12-15-2016: Chinese media outlet calls for ‘use of force’ over Taiwan after Trump call

12-14-2016: Judge approves $4.7 million settlement to those jailed for unpaid fines in Jennings

12-14-2016: St. Louis County Family Court signs agreement with feds to correct racial inequities

12-14-2016: ‘Poverty pimp’ faces slap on wrist

Editorial note: See comments about poverty pimps.

12-14-2016: City sides with charters in lawsuit filed by St. Louis Public

12-14-2016: Head Start is underfunded and unequal, according to a new study

12-14-2016: Mayor pushes tax proposals for MetroLink expansion, neighborhood development and soccer stadium

Editorial note: If tax dollars fund it, we should own a portion of it. See our Nov. 11th comments.

12-14-2016: State Farm, Allstate blame smart cars for insurance rate increases in Illinois

12-14-2016: Campaign begins to counter 'all white' Christmas

12-14-2016: Dylann Roof trial: Survivor spared from massacre tells her story

12-13-2016: Homeless man charged with dealing K2 in downtown St. Louis

Editorial note: I suspect this homeless man is a scapegoat. Downtown residents had been complaining specifically about the New Life homeless population and magically about 300 of those specific homeless people overdosed from tainted K2. Where did this homeless man get his supply of drugs? If he was so sucessful selling the drug to that many people in such a short period of time, why was he still homeless? Why didn't the supplier sell the tainted drugs to any other dealers in another location?

12-13-2016: Boeing moving defense HQ from St. Louis to D.C. area

Editorial note: After Trump spoke negatively about the cost of Air Force One, I guess Boeing decided we better head to D.C. to more effectively lobby the Trump administration. 

12-13-2016: After nailing big housing grant, Slay now eyes sales tax hike for MetroLink expansion

12-13-2016: St. Louis Women Are Having More Sex Than Anyone Else

12-13-2016: ConAgra to pay $11.2M to settle tainted peanut butter case

Editorial note: Ten companies control most of the major food brands in the U.S., so in situations like this, it's difficult to switch brand as the same company might also produce the competing product.

12-13-2016: Corporations Rather than Governments Control the World

12-13-2016: Monsanto shareholders approve merger with Bayer

Editorial note: See our post "Bayer and Monsanto a marriage made in Hell".

12-13-2016: Evansville, Ind., cops caught beating a handcuffed man, then lying about it. They won't face charges

12-13-2016: Indiana town without a police department after every Bunker Hill officer quits

12-13-2016: Reversing Course, E.P.A. Says Fracking Can Contaminate Drinking Water

Editorial note: This was common sense, here's how fracking works.

12-13-2016: 73-year-old unarmed man with dementia fatally shot by Bakersfield police

12-13-2016: Bill would force White House hopefuls to release tax returns

Editorial note: Forcing presidential candidates to release their tax returns may be illegal and could be the first step to force other candidates of federal, state and local offices to release their returns. See 26 U.S.C. 6103. See "IRS Disclosure and Privacy Law Reference Guide" and "How private are your tax records? Surprise!", which explains how any information you give to a third-party tax preparation company such as H&R Block or off-the-shelf software companies such as TurboTax can legally sell your information.

12-12-2016: Former head of St. Louis police group sentenced to 12 months in federal prison for stealing funds

12-12-2016: HUD awards nearly $30 million to the city of St. Louis

12-12-2016: Here are the St. Louis startups getting $2.4 million in state funding

12-12-2016: New identity theft scam working its way into the St. Louis area

12-12-2016: Why Innocent People Plead Guilty: The Truth About America's Overwhelming Prison Population

Editorial note: See our related Plea Bargain page and our post, "40 reasons our jails and prisons are full of black and poor people"

12-12-2016: N.J. judge orders newspaper to stop publishing articles

12-12-2016: West Virginia official who called Michelle Obama ‘ape in heels’ returns to work

12-12-2016: Terminally-ill child dies in Santa’s arms

Editorial note: Legal issues can be monumental and stressful, trust me, I've had my share. But stories like this remind you to be grateful for whatever blessing you have. See our related post from last year, "Merry Christmas from a broke family".

12-11-2016: Carrier says it will spend millions automating Indiana plant, plans to lay off workers Trump ‘saved’

Editorial note: As we mentioned in our post, "Increase your legal knowledge before Trump takes oath of office", the day after the election; "Since half of all jobs in the U.S. are predicted to be eliminated, the need for legal services will be great. Although Trump has promised to return manufacturing jobs, that promise is not realistic. Manufacturing is increasingly becoming automated, so even if manufacturers open U.S. factories, those factories will not produce anywhere near the level of employment of traditional manufacturing in the past. "

12-11-2016: KKK members claim they aren’t white supremacists

Editorial note: See our Ku Klux Klan and White Supremacy pages.

12-10-2016: ‘The Angel of Death has entered into this city’

12-10-2016: Family of mentally ill inmate beaten to death to receive $3.6m settlement

Editorial note: As we have indicated before, white privilege results in larger settlements being offered more quickly to white victims than to black victims. Less than two weeks ago, a black family felt insulted that they were only offered $300,000 for the death of their loved one.

12-9-2016: JCPenney, Kohl’s, Macy’s and Sears sued over misleading prices

Editorial note: See our related post about what to do when a retailer won't exchange defective merchandise.

12-9-2016: Victoria’s Secret Employee Fired After Telling Black Women To Leave Store

Editorial note: A black woman was accused of stealing — so this Victoria’s Secret kicked out all black customers. See our post about post traumatic slave syndrome that might help explain this woman's emotional rollercoaster from anger to tears after she was unfairly targeted and put out of the store.

12-9-2016: Heroin deaths in the U.S. rose 23 percent in one year, surpassing gun homicides

12-9-2016: Mass shooter Dylann Roof, with a laugh, confesses,'I did it'

12-9-2016: Chicago set to pay $5 million to settle 2 police shootings

12-8-2016: Police tie black man to chair and beat him until he loses vision in one eye

12-8-2016: Cops Gagged and Smothered a Man to Death, Then Fist-Bumped

12-8-2016: Half of Americans are “shut off from economic growth”

12-8-2016: Life Expectancy In U.S. Drops For First Time In Decades, Report Finds

12-8-2016: Pharmaceutical Executives Charged in Racketeering Scheme

12-8-2016: Portland to raise taxes on companies where CEO earns 100 times what workers do

12-7-2016: A Look at the Money Behind St. Louis' Mayoral Race

12-7-2016: Missouri House speaker calls for probe of prisons as harassment claims cost state millions

12-7-2016: St. Louis seeks $40 million in state tax credits for MLS stadium

12-7-2016: U.S. Senate Admits The Dawn of Artificial Intelligence Is Here

Editorial note: As we have mentioned many times before, half of all jobs in the United States will be eliminated because of automation and computerization. Artificial intelligence will chip away at the other half. “Jobs like engineers, lawyers, nurses, teachers, truck drivers, and secretaries will all disappear,”“As will physical labor jobs, like construction workers, trash collectors, or plumbers. Robots will be better, and they’ll never be late to work, argue with the boss, or sue their employer because they fell off the roof. 

12-7-2016: Commander backs standing for national anthem at Pearl Harbor

Editorial note: See our related post, "No Infamy for Black Tragedies" and our page, "War is a Racket".

12-7-2016: Noam Chomsky & Harry Belafonte in Conversation on Trump, Sanders, the KKK, Rebellious Hearts & More

12-7-2016: Miami-Dade Police Officers Filmed Handcuffing Legless Woman, Throwing Her To Ground

12-7-2016: SF judge explains why 66,000 arrest warrants were discarded

12-7-2016: Carrier Union Leader on Trump's Jobs Claim: "I Almost Threw Up in My Mouth"

12-7-2016: Lawsuit filed to stop Trump presidency

12-6-2016: Too many babies are dying in St. Louis and one group is taking a stand

12-5-2016: Pentagon buries evidence of $125 billion in bureaucratic waste

Editorial note: See our related page, "War is a Racket".

12-5-2016: Mistrial declared in case of South Carolina officer who shot Walter Scott after traffic stop

12-5-2016: Police Encounters Resulting in Black Deaths Span U.S. 

Editorial note: See our post, "Why White Cops Kill Black Men"

12-5-2016: Supreme Court takes up cases about race in redistricting

12-5-2016: Counter Protests Swamp KKK Celebration in North Carolina

Editorial note: See our page, "Ku Klux Klan – The Invisible Empire".

12-5-2016: ‘Raw hatred’: Vandals break into interracial couple’s home, spray-paint slurs and swastikas

12-5-2016: ‘See What Racism Looks Like’: Charleston Families Brace for Dylann Roof’s Trial

Editorial note: See our page, "Racism – A History"

12-4-2016: What's a "drive-by lawsuit"?

12-4-2016: Gun-rights backers vow to 'go on offense' during Trump years

12-4-2016: Boston police's plan to monitor social media, internet for potential threats is drawing criticism

12-4-2016: Snowden says Petraeus disclosed ‘far more highly classified’ secrets ‘than I ever did’

12-3-2016: Plea deals offered in FLDS food-stamp fraud case

Editorial note: 10 of 11 people charged with money laundering and food stamp fraud of millions of dollars in connection with a Fundamentalist LDS Church conspiracy will receive no jail time. Obviously, white privilege even applies to food stamp fraud.

12-2-2016: Flying Robotic Ambulance Completes First Solo Test Flight

12-2-2016: Video of woman handcuffed on floor of Homewood Walmart sparks investigation

Editorial note: A black woman, appearing to be in her fifties, is arrested for an incident that happened before she and her husband arrived in the store. The innocent handcuffed woman was held for at least a half hour after being eliminated as a suspect by the victim. This video demonstrates why everyone needs to learn their rights and how to envoke them.

12-2-2016: As Breitbart wages "war" on Kellogg’s, advertisers flee

12-2-2016: City pays Austin officer who killed teen $35,000 to avoid arbitration

12-2-2016: Lawyer sues 20-year-old student who gave a bad Yelp review, loses badly

12-2-2016: Hampshire College raises U.S. flag to full staff after protests

12-2-2016: Mall of America hires its first black Santa

12-1-2016: St. Louis employers adjust as overtime rule now in limbo

12-1-2016: Trevor Noah and conservative Tomi Lahren go head-to-head on Black Lives Matter on ‘The Daily Show’

Editorial note: Trevor Noah posed a question, why are you angry? It has always amazed me that even after slavery, Jim Crow, mass incarceration, income inequality, institutionalized racism and more, white people seem more angry than black people. Understandably, many people love the flag, but this country through law has endorsed unimaginable oppression and the flag also represents the official oppressive policies

12-1-2016: For blacks, police pursuits far more deadly

12-1-2016: Dakota Access Pipeline Protesters Close Accounts With Wells Fargo, US Bank

Editorial note: This is exactly the type of action we talked about in our July post, "Protest minus disruption or violence equals failure".

12-1-2016: Miami Gardens Cop Says He Was Fired for Reporting Illegal Stop-and-Frisks

12-1-2016: Denver Health changes mind, suspends Dr. Michelle Herren for Michelle Obama “monkey face” comment

Editorial note: It's scary to think that doctors might be treating patients while harboring racist sentiments towards them. 

12-1-2016: Jury in Michael Slager case asks for difference between 'fear' and 'passion'

12-1-2016: Cleveland woman jailed while waiting for judge to accept no contest pleas to traffic violations, contempt charge

12-1-2016: U.S. jobless claims rise to five-month high

Editorial note: As we have mentioned before, the situation will probably only get worse, half of all US jobs are predicted to be eliminated because of computerization and robotics. 

12-1-2016: VA may have infected 600 veterans with HIV and Hepatitis

12-1-2016: FBI gains expanded hacking powers after lawmakers' attempts to block fail

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