Top News Stories for Today – June 28, 2017
McConnell delays health-care vote
Due to a lack of votes, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has decided to delay the Senate vote on the GOP health-care plan. McConnell, who was pushing for a vote this week, told senators Tuesday that he now plans to hold the vote after the July 4 recess in hopes of rallying more support in the extra time.
After McConnell’s announcement, three more Republican senators — Shelley Moore Capito (W.Va.), Rob Portman (Ohio), and Jerry Moran (Kan.) — declared their opposition to the bill. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimated Monday that 22 million more people would be uninsured under the bill, known as the Better Care Reconciliation Act, than if ObamaCare were to remain law. CNN, Politico, The Week
Democrats strike after health-care vote delay
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) declared Tuesday that the “fight is not over” when it comes to health care. “We’re going to fight the bill tooth and nail,” Schumer said of the Republican health plan, dubbed the Better Care Reconciliation Act.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) announced earlier Tuesday that the vote on the bill would be delayed until after the July 4 recess because of lacking support, despite his earlier insistence that a vote be held this week. Senate Minority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) said his response to the delay was “not jubilation,” but “relief.” Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) insisted the fight must not stop until TrumpCare “is dead.” Washington Examiner, Reuters, The Week
Venezuela’s Supreme Court attacked by police helicopter
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said a police helicopter shot at the Supreme Court Tuesday and threw grenades, which could have caused “dozens of deaths.” The country’s information minister said the helicopter was stolen, and dropped four grenades at the Supreme Court and fired shots at the interior ministry, where a reception was taking place.
Maduro vowed that “sooner rather than later we are going to capture the helicopter and those behind this armed terrorist attack against the institutions of the country.” For the past three months, the opposition has protested against Maduro, who wants a July 30 vote for a Constituent Assembly, which could rewrite the national charter and supersede the opposition-controlled Congress. The opposition is calling for an early presidential election. Some supporters of the opposition, whose leaders have urged security forces to stop following Maduro’s orders, believe the attack could have been staged by the government. Reuters, Al Jazeera, The Week
Sarah Palin suing The New York Times
Sarah Palin is suing The New York Times for defamation, claiming the paper “violated the law and its own policies” in a June 14 editorial that accused the former governor of Alaska of “political incitement” before the 2011 shooting of former Rep. Gabby Giffords, the New York Post reports. Giffords, a Democrat from Arizona, was severely injured, and six people were killed after Jared Lee Loughner opened fire at an event.
The editorial was written after the shooting of Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.). Under fierce criticism, the paper issued a correction. Palin is seeking damages in an amount to be determined by a jury at trial. New York Post
Massive ‘Petya’ cyberattack rocks Europe, South Asia
A massive worldwide cyberattack is causing disruptions from Europe to South Asia, with Ukraine the heaviest hit and the apparent initial target. The attack is the biggest in Ukraine’s history, affecting everything from the banks to the electricity grids and metro. International companies, including Russia’s Rosneft oil company and the Danish shipping company AP Moller-Maersk, have also reported being hacked.
Security experts believe the virus is a variant of the “Petya” ransomware and are already likening the attack to the WannaCry ransomware attack in May, which infected an estimated 230,000 computers in more than 150 countries. The Associated Press, The Guardian