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House passes bill requiring warrant for email searches

email surveillance bill passed in HouseA bipartisan bill to update privacy laws was unanimously approved by the U.S. House of Representatives that would require law enforcement to get a warrant in order to review citizens' email more than 180 days old -- right now, they don't need one.

The Email Privacy Act was approved by the House on Monday night and would replace the decades old Electronic Communications Privacy Act, which includes a loophole allowing law enforcement to gather older email without permission.

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House votes to roll back rule to prevent mentally ill from buying guns

House votes to roll back gun restriction for mentally illThe U.S. House of Representatives voted Thursday to repeal an Obama administration rule aimed at keeping firearms out of the hands of people with severe mental illness on the grounds that it may unfairly infringe on their Constitutional rights.

The House voted along party lines, 235 to 180, to repeal a regulation adopted in December requiring the Social Security Administration to send information about people receiving supplemental payments and insurance to the FBI's National Instant Criminal Background Check System if they are mentally ill.

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U.S. House axes rules to prevent corruption, pollution

House axes corruption and polllution rulesTwo major U.S. rules aimed at curbing corruption and pollution in the energy sector may be entirely wiped from the books by next week, after the Republican-led House of Representatives on Wednesday voted to repeal them.

The Senate is expected to take up repealing the rules, both of which were years in the making, as soon as Thursday.

Under the virtually untested Congressional Review Act, the Republican-led Congress can vote to permanently undo newly minted regulations. Agencies cannot revisit overturned regulations and timing in the law means any regulation enacted in the Obama administration's final months are eligible for axing.

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The Latest: Price, Mnuchin votes postponed after Dem boycott

Pice, Mnuchin votes postponedSenate Finance Committee votes to confirm President Donald Trump's picks for health and Treasury secretary are being indefinitely postponed after Democrats boycotted the meeting.

Democratic senators held an abruptly called briefing for reporters outside the hearing room. They said they were demanding more information about the two nominees, GOP Georgia Rep. Tom Price to be Health secretary and financier Steve Mnuchin to head the Treasury Department.

The Democrats cited separate newspaper reports about Price's trading in a health company stock and Mnuchin's behavior involving foreclosures when he was a banker.

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Senate confirms Nikki Haley as UN Ambassador

Senate confirms Nikki HaleySouth Carolina Governor Nikki Haley has been confirmed by the U.S. Senate to serve as the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations.

Senators approved Haley’s nomination 96-4.

President Donald Trump nominated Haley to the position back in November. The Senate Foreign Relations Committee overwhelmingly approved Haley’s nomination earlier on Tuesday.

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Congress rejects Obama veto of 9/11 bill; first override of his presidency

9/11 veto overridden by CongressThe House and Senate voted Wednesday to reject President Obama's veto of legislation allowing lawsuits against foreign sponsors of terrorism — the first successful override of a presidential veto since Obama took office.

The president had vetoed the legislation Friday because he said the bill — known as the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act, or JASTA — would infringe on the president’s ability to conduct foreign policy. It was the 12th veto of his presidency.

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The GOP Shut Down a Program That Might Have Prevented Dallas and Baton Rouge

GOP cut funds for vet studyAs the right-wing outrage machine would have it, the shootings of police in Dallas and Baton Rouge by U.S. military veterans were the fault of President Obama. “How many law enforcement and people have to die because of a lack of leadership in our country?” Trump recently wrote in a Tweet.

But seven years ago, when a little-known division in the new president’s Department of Homeland Security sought to explore the potential violence of returning veterans—one that might have aided local law enforcement with intelligence in Dallas and Baton Rouge—it was Congressional Republicans who succeeded in pushing to shut the program down.

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