Political news from WNPR

Greece and its European Union partners are beginning to sort out what's next after the country voted en masse to reject a German-led bailout plan that would have given the country more credit to pay its debt in exchange for tough austerity measures.

Updated at 2:30 a.m. ET Monday:

Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis has resigned. According to The Associated Press: Varoufakis was told shortly after the Greek referendum result that the some eurozone finance ministers and Greece's other creditors would prefer he not attend the ministers' meetings. He issued an announcement on Monday saying the prime minister had judged that his resignation "might help achieve a deal" and that he was leaving the finance ministry for this reason.

Updated at 8:40 p.m. ET Sunday:

Former U.S. Sen. Jim Webb has become the fifth Democrat to announce he is seeking the party's nomination for president.

"[Our] country needs a fresh approach to solving the problems that confront us and too often unnecessarily divide us," Webb said in a statement. "We need to shake the hold of these shadow elites on our political process."

Webb, 69, joins former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley and former Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee in the 2016 contest.

Harriet Jones / WNPR

In the implementer bill passed today, the state legislature updated and expanded upon the legislation, passed last summer, that established the Connecticut Port Authority.

Governor Dannel Malloy signed a bill creating the statewide Port Authority last June. The language in the implementer bill updated and expanded on the previously passed legislation.

ignition_interlock / Creative Commons

Beginning July 1, Connecticut residents convicted for the first time of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs will not only have their licenses suspended for 45 days -- they’ll also have to install a breathalyzer on the ignition of their car for at least six months.

City of New Haven

State and federal prosecutors in Connecticut have joined law enforcement officials, New Haven's mayor, and members of the city's clergy in issuing what they call a "statement of conscience" decrying racial violence and vowing to help prevent it. 

President Obama on Wednesday announced the formal resumption of diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba after more than half a century of hostilities. The two countries have agreed to reopen embassies in Washington and Havana.

Standing in the White House Rose Garden, Obama called it "a historic step forward in our efforts to normalize relations with the Cuban government and people."

Obama said U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry will visit Havana this summer to "proudly raise the flag over our embassy once more."

At the end of World War II with the continent in ruins, Winston Churchill famously proclaimed, "We must build a United States of Europe." He believed such a union would bring an end to centuries of European wars.

For 70 years Europe has been engaged in a political and economic quest to make that happen. But many in Greece, such as Athens cabdriver Jordan Repanidis, feel this historic reshaping of the Western world has a stranglehold on their country.

California Gov. Jerry Brown has signed off on one of the strictest school vaccination laws in the country a day after the state Legislature gave the measure final approval.

Obama To Expand Overtime Pay For Millions

Jun 30, 2015

President Obama announced this week that the Labor Department will expand overtime pay, in a move the administration estimates would impact 5 million U.S. workers. That would double the income threshold at which employers can avoid paying overtime.

Right now, only salaried employees earning less $23,660 a year are eligible for overtime. This rule would raise that threshold so that employees making up to $50,660 a year would get paid overtime.

CT Senate Democrats / Flickr

The Connecticut General Assembly returned to Hartford for a special session Monday, and while the state Senate spent the afternoon deliberating the two budget bills, the House of Representatives took up the "excessive force bill."

janp013/iStock / Thinkstock

Connecticut lawmakers passed two bills on Monday aimed at reforming the state's criminal justice system. 

Chilli Head / Creative Commons

One man was killed and three others were shot at a basketball tournament at a Hartford school over the weekend. But city school officials now say the event didn't have a permit or the required security. 

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Governor Dannel Malloy has vetoed three pieces of education legislation, including a bill to increase the number of student seats on the University of Connecticut's Board of Trustees.

Michelle Lee / Creative Commons

State lawmakers will consider rolling back some tax increases they approved earlier this month as they return to the Capitol for a special session.

The session is scheduled for Monday.

Jeff Cohen / WNPR

Mayor Pedro Segarra is making his case for reelection this fall. But his fundraising emails still contain some questionable numbers. 

Cliff / Creative Commons

The Connecticut Elections Enforcement Commission is asking the Connecticut attorney general's office to enforce in court the panel's subpoena seeking records from the Democratic State Central Committee.

Jeff Cohen / WNPR

U.S. Senator Chris Murphy applauded today's Supreme Court decision upholding the part of the Affordable Care Act that allows the government to subsidize health care for the poor and middle class. 

In the wake of last week's Charleston, S.C., church shootings, 2016 Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders explained his competing concerns between gun rights and gun safety.

"I think guns and gun control is an issue that needs to be discussed," Sanders told NPR's David Greene in an interview airing on Thursday's Morning Edition. "Let me add to that, I think that urban America has got to respect what rural America is about, where 99 percent of the people in my state who hunt are law abiding people."

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"