Politics

Political news from WNPR

Official White House portrait of Thomas Jefferson; James Tooley, Jr. portrait of Andrew Jackson / Creative Commons

Like several other states, Connecticut's Democratic Party hosts its annual Jefferson Jackson Bailey Dinner next week. Like others, the party is also revisiting the name of this fundraiser.

The event is named after national historical figures Thomas Jefferson and Andrew Jackson. State political operative John Moran Bailey's name is added to Connecticut's dinner.

The Confederate battle flag and three other symbols of the Confederacy were taken down Wednesday from the Capitol grounds in Montgomery, Ala., after their removal was ordered by Gov. Robert Bentley amid a growing backlash against the symbols following last week's racially motivated mass shooting at a black church in South Carolina.

Stevie Gill / Creative Commons

If the State of Connecticut was a college student, it would be the one who crams for every exam and writes every final paper the night before. We say this, because the fiscal year starts on July 1, and a special session to finish the details of the state budget is reportedly scheduled for the last two days of June.

The U.S. ambassador to France has been summoned to the French Foreign Ministry to answer new claims that the NSA monitored the communications of three sitting French presidents and their top staff.

Those said to be targeted include President Francois Hollande, who is holding an emergency meeting today with top French lawmakers.

From Paris, NPR's Eleanor Beardsley reports:

lculig/iStock / Thinkstock

We usually think of propaganda as a tool used by autocrats eager to manipulate minds and limit rights we take for granted in the West. Vladimir Putin, Kim Jong-un or King Salman bin Abdulaziz wouldn't have a chance with us.

But Western culture is steeped in propaganda that's more insidious and less blatant.

As the Supreme Court edges closer to issuing an opinion that could deal a blow to the federal health exchange operating in more than 30 states, Democrats have sounded a warning to their colleagues on the other side: Be careful what you wish for.

South Carolina's most prominent political leaders say it's time for their state to stop flying the Confederate battle flag on the grounds of its Statehouse. Gov. Nikki Haley made their position clear Monday afternoon, speaking alongside Sen. Lindsey Graham, Sen. Tim Scott and others.

Calls for moving the Confederate battle flag have grown since the shooting of nine black church members in Charleston last week. After speaking about the efforts to cope with that tragedy, Haley said that she has seen "the heart and soul" of South Carolina.

Damian Gadal / Creative Commons

The Planning and Zoning commission for Bridgeport will vote on June 29 on a proposal to extend a moratorium on applications for medical marijuana farms and dispensaries for another year.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

A coalition of labor unions and social services advocates say Connecticut lawmakers should increase income taxes on the wealthy rather than impose spending cuts to cover the governor's proposed rollback of business tax increases.

Chuck Miller / Creative Commons

Two big Connecticut corporations threatened to leave the state after a budget deal was reached before the end of the regular session. But were they empty threats? Governor Dannel Malloy didn't want to take any chances and announced last week a reduction in business tax hikes. This hour, our weekly news roundtable The Wheelhouse continues the budget drama, and other legislation that may be taken up during a special session. One of those, Malloy's "Second Chance Society" proposals were touted by the governor in Germany this week.

This story is part of NPR's series Journey Home. We're going to the places presidential candidates call home and finding out what those places tell us about how they see the world.

Hillary Clinton's family moved to Park Ridge, Ill., in 1950 when she was a toddler. It's a quiet, upper middle-class suburb of Chicago — except for all the airplanes.

"Park Ridge is right under O'Hare [International Airport]," said Ernie Rickets, who grew up with Clinton. "It's in the final approach"

Chion Wolf / WNPR

The U.S. needs more than just a military response to the violence of the self-proclaimed Islamic State. That’s the message from Connecticut Senator Chris Murphy, who’s issued a call for new principles in U.S. foreign policy. 

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Groups providing services to people with mental health, substance abuse, and developmental disabilities are worried about Governor Dannel Malloy's proposal to make additional spending cuts to Connecticut's new budget in order to roll back business tax increases.

Hillary Clinton walked a delicate line on trade as she held her first official press conference of her campaign on Monday.

Instead of staking out a clear position on whether she supports the current Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal and fast-track authority for the president, the Democratic presidential candidate instead dismissed the current stalemate in Congress as a "process issue."

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Governor Malloy is asking lawmakers to roll back $223.7 million in tax hikes to businesses in the new two-year budget. Those tax increases prompted some major employers to discuss possibly moving out of the state. Malloy said his plan addresses their concerns.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Since taking office, Sen. Chris Murphy has been vocal on U.S. foreign policy both in the Ukraine/Russia conflict, and in the Middle East. In a recent op-ed for Foreign Affairs, he joined other senators to advocate for new foreign policy principles.

Major decisions are expected this month, as the U.S. Supreme Court works its way through several cases still pending before it closes out its calendar for the 2014-2015 term.

Jeff Cohen / WNPR

The race to be the next Hartford mayor is underway. And with just over a month to go until the city's Democratic leaders endorse their candidate, Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra defended his record at a debate Thursday night.

orudorumagi11 / Creative Commons

The state legislature left some work to do after the regular session ended, but it did change the way the car tax is applied across the state. 

Speaking on WNPR's Where We Live, panelists broke down the way the state budget would affect the tax and how complex it appears to be.

The 2016 presidential cycle is a first for women. It’s the first time two women are simultaneously vying for the White House as the nominee of each of the two major parties, political research analysts say.

But for Republican presidential hopeful Carly Fiorina, gender-identity politics is complicated.

Now that Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren has made it very clear that she won't be a candidate for president in 2016, some of the Democratic candidates in the race are actively seeking the backing of Warren's supporters.

Bernie Sanders is making a major effort to bring them over to his presidential campaign.

C-Span

Senator Chris Murphy is pushing for congressional action to ban the deployment of U.S. ground troops to Iraq and Syria. Murphy spoke about his amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act on the Senate floor on Wednesday.

Daniel Schwen / Creative Commons

The state of Indiana is suggesting three major Connecticut employers that openly criticized planned tax increases consider moving to the Hoosier State. 

Exploring European Conservatism

Jun 10, 2015
Bobby Hidy, Creative Commons

Just listen to Republican candidates for president of the U.S., and you have a pretty good idea of what modern, American conservatism is all about: lower taxes, gun rights, and smaller government, to name a few notions.

But in Europe, where political, social, and economic climates are much different, what does the political right look like? 

The chairman of the Massachusetts Gaming Commission confirms he is under investigation by state ethics officials.

Commission Chairman Stephen Crosby told the Boston Globe he is cooperating with the investigation and has done nothing wrong.

The newspaper said the state ethics commission received a sworn statement alleging Crosby participated in the process to award a casino license in the greater Boston area despite publicly recusing himself because of personal ties with a casino landowner.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Connecticut House Speaker Brendan Sharkey called for new leadership at Quinnipiac University this week, citing problems caused by students living in residential neighborhoods.

The Connecticut Mirror

Connecticut’s legislative session ended with a soft thud last week. There wasn’t quite the mad rush we're used to seeing as the clock ticked down. That means, lawmakers will have to return to the capitol for a special session. This hour on our weekly news roundtable The Wheelhouse, we recap the long session and talk taxes, as business groups and even other states are jumping in with comments on the state's new tax plans.

Vermont will have a new governor in 2017.

Gov. Peter Shumlin announced Monday afternoon that he won’t seek a fourth term in office. The Democrat says he’ll leave the state in far better shape than he found it. But his Republican critics argue otherwise, and the open seat for governor has made for an early start to the 2016 campaign. 

It was an ugly scene. A fight broke out at a pool party in a McKinney, Texas, subdivision on Friday, allegedly after a white resident told a group of black teenagers to "go back to their Section 8 housing." Local cops show up in force. At some point, a bystander pulls out his cellphone and begins videotaping.

John Phelan / Creative Commons

The chairman of the Connecticut Republican Party says the state GOP plans to raise and spend $500,000 to try and win control of the General Assembly.

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