Politics

Political news from WNPR

House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., called out GOP candidate Donald Trump for insufficiently rebuking David Duke, a former Ku Klux Klan leader, and his white supremacist politics.

"This is the kind of moment where we should be having a serious debate about the policies to restore the American idea. Instead the conversation over the last few days has been about white supremacists groups," he told reporters Tuesday after the weekly House GOP meeting.

Ryan has, for the most part, stayed out of presidential politics.

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One of the largest state employee unions in the Hartford area has launched a television ad campaign to address the threat of more than 1,000 job cuts amid Connecticut's budget shortfall.

The big day is finally here — after tonight's Super Tuesday results, there will be a much clearer picture of how both the Republican and Democratic races could shake out. Will Donald Trump continue his dominance? Can Marco Rubio catch up? Can Ted Cruz rebound? Will Hillary Clinton roll through the South? Can Bernie Sanders bounce back after a devastating South Carolina loss?

In the last few decades, Massachusetts has delivered liberal icons to the national stage in presidential contests — experienced politicians including members of the Kennedy family, Mike Dukakis and John Kerry. Now, the state might be ready to deliver Donald Trump one of his biggest wins yet in the Republican presidential primary contest.

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The legislature's Transportation Committee heard testimony Monday on Governor Dannel Malloy's proposed transportation lockbox. Lawmakers expressed concern about possible ways around the proposed amendment to the state constitution.

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Hillary Clinton flew in to western Massachusetts on Monday morning, one day ahead of the Super Tuesday voting in more than a dozen states, including Massachusetts and Vermont. 

If you want to understand Clinton's Super Tuesday strategy all you need to do is look at her travel schedule: Georgia, Arkansas, Tennessee and Monday in Massachusetts and Virginia.

In these states she's delivering a relatively new, more positive message. There's less drawing contrasts with her primary opponent Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders and more talk of "breaking down barriers" and "love and kindness."

For his part in an operation that rescued an American civilian who was being held hostage in Afghanistan, U.S. Navy SEAL Senior Chief Special Warfare Operator Edward Byers was presented with the Medal of Honor at the White House on Monday.

You can watch the event via White House video.

Frederick Gore for The Springfield Republican

Republican presidential candidate John Kasich picked Springfield, Massachusetts, for one of his final stops ahead of the Super Tuesday primary. 

Hillary Clinton won the South Carolina Democratic primary on Saturday, notching a decisive win in a state where she suffered a devastating loss just eight years ago.

The Associated Press called the race for the former secretary of state over rival Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders just seconds after the polls closed at 7 p.m. ET. With all precincts reporting, Clinton beat Sanders by nearly 50 points, winning 73.5 percent to 26 percent.

Eight years ago, South Carolina was where the wheels started to come off Hillary Clinton's campaign. But tonight, it could be where redemption begins.

The former secretary of state is heavily favored over rival Bernie Sanders in the Palmetto State, in part due to her advantage with the state's sizable African-American population.

Donald Trump picked up his first congressional endorsements this week, and today he scored another major backer: one of his former rivals, Chris Christie.

"I've gotten to know all the people on that stage. And there is no one who is better prepared to provide America with the strong leadership that it needs, both at home and around the world, than Donald Trump," the New Jersey governor said at a news conference in Fort Worth, Texas.

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Connecticut’s Claims Commissioner J. Paul Vance Jr. recently resigned his position. He had been at the center of a controversy for awarding $16.8 million to four men whose murder convictions in a 1996 gang­-related shooting were overturned. Because of this recent award, lawmakers are looking to make changes to the state’s wrongful incarceration statute.

In their tenth debate with Donald Trump, Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz finally got real.

The two first-term senators, who have been chasing Trump in the polls and in February vote tallies, came at him on every issue their opposition research teams could muster.

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New estimates show the projected deficit in Connecticut's main spending account has grown to about $266 million.

As the second month of the year draws to a close, Gov. Charlie Baker appears to be growing more frustrated with the Legislature’s pace in passing his comprehensive opioid bill.

The legislation remains bottled up in a conference committee that’s working out the differences between the House and Senate.

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The state Freedom of Information Commission in Hartford has ruled that the University of Connecticut trustees violated open-meetings laws when they privately reviewed the school's $1.3 billion proposed budget.

While Apple and the FBI fight in court over the government's demand that the tech company to help it break into the iPhone of one of the San Bernardino shooters, Congress is trying to find its own solution to the digital security/national security debate.

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Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin said the city has a $9 million budget shortfall this year, one that is projected to be three times that in the budget year to come without significant cuts. The mayor is beginning by making some immediate changes at city hall to try and save money. 

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Senator Andrew Maynard has announced his decision to not seek re-election this fall, but he now faces questions regarding his ability to serve out the rest of his term. 

The legal world has a new blogger: former constitutional law professor and current President Barack Obama.

The president took to SCOTUSblog, the leading online chronicle of the Supreme Court, on Wednesday to offer some "spoiler-free insights" into what he is seeking in a justice to replace the late Antonin Scalia.

The Nevada caucuses on the Republican side were a five-card game, and The Donald once again drew the ace.

The other "face cards" were Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz, with Rubio once again edging his fellow senator by a narrow margin.

But it scarcely mattered. Their shares combined fell shy of Donald Trump's 46 percent. And no one else had so much as a nickel's worth.

As the presidential race shifted to Nevada with Democratic caucuses last week and Republican caucuses Tuesday night, more young voters had a chance to chime in to the political process. Nevada is a state with a huge young, diverse population.

But there is the perennial question: Do young people matter in politics?

In every recent election, you've probably heard some iteration of the same generational critique: "Young people don't vote."

Rik Stevens / New Hampshire Public Radio

In Nevada, Donald Trump cruised to an easy victory in the state’s caucuses. This hour, our weekly news roundtable, The Wheelhouse spends some time wondering whether the Trump juggernaut and the resurgent Hillary Clinton campaign might render our little state’s primary moot (again). 

Any doubt that Senate Republicans would hold the line behind their leader's decision to block President Obama's Supreme Court nominee has been erased.

"I can now confidently say the view shared by virtually everybody in my conference, is that the nomination should be made by the president the people elect in the election that's underway right now," Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., told reporters.

Donald Trump has won the Nevada Republican caucuses, giving the billionaire his third victory in two weeks and a huge surge of momentum heading into Super Tuesday.

Florida Sen. Marco Rubio held a narrow but decisive lead for second place over Texas Sen. Ted Cruz. With all caucus votes in, Rubio had 23.9 percent to Cruz's 21.4 percent, according to the Associated Press.

But it was Trump who towered above his two top rivals, nearly doubling the support of his nearest competitor with 45.9 percent of the vote.

Hillary Clinton wants you to know that she was doing health care before health care was cool.

"You know, before it was called Obamacare it was called Hillarycare," Clinton said recently at a rally in Elko, Nev.

It's a stock line these days in her stump speeches and debates.

The term Hillarycare was coined back in the 1990s, when Clinton tried and failed to restructure the U.S. health care system during her husband's first term as president. It was supposed to be an insult, but now she's embracing it.

Director Spike Lee became the latest black celebrity enter the battle of presidential endorsements ahead of this weekend's Democratic nominating contest in South Carolina. On Tuesday, the Bernie Sanders campaign released a radio ad called "Wake Up" featuring Lee.

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A military justice expert from Yale Law School said the president’s comments on closing the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay are a first step in an effort to get the American people behind him on the issue.

In any ordinary year, Donald Trump's big win in South Carolina on Saturday night would all but anoint him the Republican presidential nominee. That's especially true after his big win in New Hampshire, where he won with support across various age and income groups in the party.

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