Category Archives: Special Reports

Jan. 6 Committee’s final verdict: Prosecute Trump

Donald Trump committed multiple crimes when he attempted to overthrow the government on Jan. 6, 2021, and for that, he must be charged by the Justice Department. That was the recommendation that came from the House Select Committee investigating the Trump coup when it wrapped up its probe on Monday. Continue reading

Just in time for holidays, Dems may embrace GOP plan to boot millions off Medicaid

One expert noted the pending deal has "huge stakes... for children and families."

With congressional leadership expected to imminently release the text of omnibus government funding legislation, Politico revealed Monday that Democrats are preparing to join with Republicans who have demanded an end to Medicaid policies enacted because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Continue reading

No, ‘independent state legislatures’ can’t shred constitutional rights

Far-right state lawmakers say the Constitution gives them the right to stiff voters. Legal experts say that’s bogus.

Are state lawmakers free to ignore the results of a presidential election? Continue reading

A job behind bars

A prison mental health specialist talks about the myths and realities of providing psychological care to detainees

At least two million people in the United States are incarcerated in 122 United States prisons. Little is known about the prisoners themselves. Did their background condemn them to bad behavior or did they just make grievous mistakes? Do they suffer from mental illness sometimes masquerading as criminal behavior? Can they change their life path? A mental health specialist with 25 years of direct experience provided counseling services to pre-trial detainees in Chicago’s notorious Cook County prison system, agreed to this interview. Continue reading

‘You don’t get to lead a government you tried to destroy’: House Dems move to block Trump 2024 run

"The 14th Amendment makes clear that based on his past behavior, Donald Trump is disqualified from ever holding federal office again," said Rep. David Cicilline, the lead sponsor of a new bill raising a constitutional challenge against Trump's bid.

More than 40 House Democrats introduced legislation Thursday aiming to bar former President Donald Trump from the 2024 ballot, citing the 14th Amendment clause prohibiting insurrectionists from holding federal office. Continue reading

‘Chilling’: Republican state AG’s Office sought list of trans Texans

"This is an alarming attack on the privacy, safety, and dignity of transgender Texans," said the ACLU.

“Despicable.” “Disgusting.” “Egregious.” “Terrifying.” Continue reading

The U.S. egged on the coup in Peru

On December 7, 2022, Pedro Castillo sat in his office on what would be the last day of his presidency of Peru. His lawyers went over spreadsheets that showed Castillo would triumph over a motion in Congress to remove him. This was going to be the third time that Castillo faced a challenge from the Congress, but his lawyers and advisers—including former Prime Minister Anibal Torres—told him that he held an advantage over the Congress in opinion polls (his approval rating had risen to 31 percent, while that of the Congress was just about 10 percent). Continue reading

A joyful day’ as Biden signs Respect for Marriage Act

"The antidote to hate is love," the president said during a White House signing ceremony. "This law and the love it defends strike a blow against hate in all its forms."

Human rights advocates cheered Tuesday’s signing by U.S. President Joe Biden of the Respect for Marriage Act, landmark legislation to codify limited protections for same-sex and interracial marriages passed in response to right-wing attacks on civil rights. Continue reading

Kavanaugh’s attendance at right-wing holiday party raises new ethics concerns

The justice attended a party with former Trump administration adviser Stephen Miller, whose legal organization has interests in at least one case the court is deliberating.

Just days after a former evangelical activist testified before Congress about the ease with which he and his associates lobbied right-wing U.S. Supreme Court justices, Politico reported that Justice Brett Kavanaugh attended a private holiday party with a number of high-profile conservatives, sparking alarm among ethics watchdogs. Continue reading

‘Tragedy unfolding’ as cleanup of largest-ever Keystone Pipeline oil spill continues

Around 600,000 gallons of crude tar sands oil spewed Wednesday from the pipeline into a northern Kansas creek that's part of a watershed providing drinking water for 800,000 people.

Cleanup and assessment efforts continued Monday after a Canadian fossil fuel company’s pipeline spilled nearly an Olympic-sized swimming pool’s worth of crude tar sands oil into a northern Kansas creek that feeds a watershed providing drinking water for hundreds of thousands of people. Continue reading

Peru’s oligarchy overthrows President Castillo

June 6, 2021, was a day which shocked many in Peru’s oligarchy. Pedro Castillo Terrones, a rural schoolteacher who had never before been elected to office, won the second round of the presidential election with just over 50.13% of the vote. More than 8.8 million people voted for Castillo’s program of profound social reforms and the promise of a new constitution against the far-right’s candidate, Keiko Fujimori. In a dramatic turn of events, the historical agenda of neoliberalism and repression, passed down by former Peruvian dictator Alberto Fujimori to his daughter Keiko, was rejected at the polls. Continue reading

US Supreme Court wants to make America more bigoted again

Bigots are switching to "creative expression" instead of religion as the club they'll use to beat down public accommodation laws.

The Supreme Court appears hell-bent on making America bigoted again. Step-by-step, they’re undoing every bit of progressive legislation from the past 80 years that they can find. Continue reading

‘About damn time’: NY jury finds Trump Organization guilty on all counts of tax fraud

"Today's guilty verdict against the Trump Organization shows that we will hold individuals and organizations accountable when they violate our laws to line their pockets," said New York Attorney General Letitia James.

A New York jury on Tuesday found two subsidiaries of Trump Organization, former President Donald Trump’s company, guilty on all counts of criminal tax fraud. Continue reading

Right-Wing SCOTUS majority signals support for anti-LGBTQ+ reactionaries

"It does not bode well for the future of civil rights law that Gorsuch believes a state imposes 'reeducation training' on employers when it reminds them how to comply with nondiscrimination rules," said one court observer.

With rights advocates rallying outside the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday, the right-wing majority of the court appeared poised to rule in favor of a web designer who aims to discriminate against LGBTQ+ couples when she creates wedding websites, as the justices heard arguments in the case 303 Creative LLC v. Elenis. Continue reading

Cuba goes on a diplomatic tour in an increasingly multipolar world

On November 27 morning, Cuban President Miguel Díaz-Canel walked into a voting station in the Playa neighborhood to vote in Cuba’s municipal elections. He had landed in Havana an hour earlier from an intense tour of Algeria, Russia, Turkey, and China. Continue reading

GOP’s silence on Trump’s call to axe Constitution reveals ‘full embrace of fascism’: House Dem

"Last week the leader of the Republican Party had dinner with a Nazi leader and a man who called Adolf Hitler 'great,'" said Rep. Bill Pascrell. "Yesterday Trump called for throwing out the Constitution and making himself dictator."

Repeating his thoroughly disproven lie that the 2020 election was stolen, former President Donald Trump called Saturday for discarding the U.S. Constitution to overturn his loss. Continue reading

Across Africa, water conflict threatens security, health, and the environment

Water is a finite resource on our planet. We can only rely on what we have, which translates to about 2.5 percent of drinkable fresh water. Of that amount, only 0.4 percent currently exists in lakes, rivers, and moisture in the atmosphere. The strain of this limited supply grows by the day and as this continues, the detrimental impact will continue to be felt in places least equipped to find alternative solutions—in particular, the African continent. Continue reading

Rail unions protest Biden’s move to have Congress impose new pact

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Several rail union leaders, plus a top rank-and-file group, are protesting Democratic President Joe Biden’s request to Congress to impose a new contract on the nation’s 115,000 freight rail workers. Continue reading

Analysis finds state legislators proposed 306 bills targeting trans people in past 2 years

"Right-wing state lawmakers are obsessed with taking away the rights of trans people and we're obsessed with knocking them out of public office," said one rights’ group.

An analysis released Monday by NPR details what one rights advocacy group called the Republican Party’s “obsession” with curtailing the rights of transgender people, with U.S. state legislators proposing more than 300 pieces of legislation targeting the community over the past two years. Continue reading

Farm workers push for congressional action during lame duck session

A delegation of farm workers lobbied Congress ahead of the holiday weekend to pass legislation that would provide a pathway to citizenship for thousands of workers who provide the food for our tables.

Farm workers mobilized in Washington, DC the week before Thanksgiving to push lawmakers to pass the Farm Workforce Modernization Act, a compromise bill that would help secure America’s food supply and put some of the nation’s most essential workers on a path to citizenship. Continue reading

The waters are running red in Africa’s Great Lakes Region—a war is raging we can’t ignore any longer

In early November, foreign ministers from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Christophe Lutundula Apala Pen’Apala, and Rwanda, Vicent Biruta met in Luanda, Angola, to find a political solution to a conflict that has been ongoing in eastern DRC for decades. The foreign ministers agreed that the “peace roadmap” agreed to in a July meeting had to be implemented. Angola’s President João Lourenço shuttled between Rwanda’s President Paul Kagame and the DRC’s President Félix Antoine Tshisekedi in his role as the African Union’s “mediator in the crisis” between Rwanda and the DRC. Continue reading

Why Raphael Warnock’s reelection could tip the balance for America’s economic future

Michael McMullen spent years agonizing over the failing pension plan that put his golden years at risk. Continue reading

US Supreme Court denies Trump’s bid to keep tax returns from House committee

"At long last the Supreme Court has moved to end this farce," said Rep. Bill Pascrell. "Now let our committee get these documents. Let the sunlight in."

In a blow to Donald Trump, the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday rejected an attempt by the former president to prevent a congressional committee from obtaining his federal income tax returns. Continue reading

Critics decry ‘disappointing’ billion-dollar Biden bailout of California’s last nuclear plant

"Instead of putting Diablo Canyon back on life support, dependent on a drip of taxpayer subsidies, California should turn a new leaf and lean into building the electric system of the future," said one campaigner.

Environmental and climate campaigners decried Monday’s announcement that the Biden administration—which promotes nuclear energy as part of its solution to the climate emergency—will give more than a billion dollars to California’s largest utility to keep the state’s last nuclear power plant operating. Continue reading

Deadly Polish abortion ban treats women ‘as incubators,’ critics say at EU hearing

"The European Parliament must continue to put pressure on the Polish government and use all the tools it has, or more women will die," said one advocate.

Reproductive rights advocates, attorneys, and family members of people who have died as a result of Poland’s stringent abortion ban were among those who testified before the European Parliament in Brussels on Thursday, calling on the body to take every available action to protect Polish people from “conservative politicians” whose ban has led to at least six deaths so far. Continue reading

109 Republicans voted against bill to ban sexual assault NDAs

The newly passed Speak Out Act "empowers survivors of sexual assault and harassment to speak openly about their experiences and pursue the justice they deserve," said Rep. Pramila Jayapal.

The House on Wednesday passed bipartisan legislation that prohibits employers from using pre-dispute non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) or non-disparagement clauses to silence survivors of workplace sexual assault and harassment. Continue reading

House Democrat leads charge to bar Trump from office, citing 14th Amendment

The former president "forfeited his right to ever hold federal office again for leading an insurrection against the United States," said Rep. David Cicilline.

As former President Donald Trump prepared to announce his 2024 presidential campaign Tuesday, Rep. David Cicilline was circulating a letter to his fellow Democratic lawmakers calling on them to support legislation that would bar Trump from running, citing his involvement in the January 2021 attack on the U.S. Capitol. Continue reading

Lula must save Brazil from savage capitalism, says Federal Deputy Juliana Cardoso

Juliana Cardoso is sitting in her office in front of a lavender, orange, and yellow mandala that was made for her. She has been a member of São Paulo’s city council since 2008. On October 2, 2022, as a candidate for the Workers Party (PT), Cardoso won a seat in Brazil’s lower house, the Federal Chamber of Deputies. Continue reading

Woodward and Bernstein warn that GOP leader Trump was a seditious president

WASHINGTON—The two reporters perhaps more expert than anyone else in presidents who violate the U.S. Constitution have come to one conclusion: Donald Trump “was a seditious president.” Continue reading

Japan’s discomfort in the new cold war

In early December 2022, Japan’s Self-Defense Force joined the U.S. armed forces for Resolute Dragon 2022, which the U.S. Marines call the “largest bilateral training exercise of the year.” Major General Jay Bargeron of the U.S. 3rd Marine Division said at the start of the exercise that the United States is “ready to fight and win if called upon.” Resolute Dragon 2022 followed the resumption in September of trilateral military drills by Japan, South Korea, and the United States off the Korean peninsula; these drills had been suspended as the former South Korean government attempted a policy of rapprochement with North Korea. Continue reading

New Senate report spotlights ‘barbaric consequences’ of GOP abortion bans

"Republicans' crusade against women's reproductive freedoms has created national chaos that is a mortal threat to women's health."

Four months after the right-wing majority of the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, Sen. Elizabeth Warren led several Democratic lawmakers Tuesday in sharing a comprehensive look at the effects of the state-level attacks on reproductive care that the ruling set in motion. Continue reading

US unemployment system ‘wholly unprepared’ as Fed risks throwing millions out of work

"If another wave of job losses does indeed hit, the unemployment safety net isn't ready to cushion the blow without significant improvements," warns the co-author of a new study.

With the Federal Reserve poised to induce mass layoffs in its ongoing campaign to curb inflation, a study published Tuesday warns the notoriously fragmented U.S. unemployment system is nowhere near ready to handle another surge in jobless claims, potentially spelling disaster for the millions of people who could be thrown out of work next year. Continue reading