Politics

Barnes releases law enforcement endorsements

MADISON, Wis. — U.S. Senate candidate Mandela Barnes Thursday released a series of law enforcement endorsements, which come amid conservative criticisms of his stance on law enforcement issues. The coalition includes…

Armenia, Azerbaijan agree on cease-fire to end fighting

A senior Armenian official says Armenia and Azerbaijan negotiated a cease-fire to end a flare-up of fighting that has killed 155 soldiers on both sides. The secretary of Armenia’s Security Council announced the truce in televised remarks early Thursday, saying it took effect hours earlier — at 8 p.m. (1600 GMT) Wednesday. A previous cease-fire brokered by Russia on Tuesday quickly failed. The announcement follows two days of heavy fighting that marked the largest outbreak of hostilities between the two longtime adversaries in nearly two years. Shortly before Grigoryan’s announcement, thousands of protesters took to the streets of Armenia’s capital accusing Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan of betraying his country by trying to appease Azerbaijan and demanding his resignation.

Milwaukee mayor's support for vote campaign draws backlash

A new privately funded get-out-the-vote initiative in Wisconsin’s largest and most Democratic city has the support of Milwaukee’s mayor, but Republicans say it’s an attempt by Democrats to improperly bolster turnout in the narrowly divided battleground state. The controversy over the Milwaukee Votes 2022 initiative echoes concerns raised by Republicans in 2020 when a group funded by Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg distributed millions of dollars in grants to support local elections offices in Wisconsin and throughout the country as COVID-19 complicated the presidential election. Milwaukee Mayor Cavalier Johnson's office has clarified that the initiative is nonpartisan, and that it's being funded and carried out without government assistance.

Disabled voters win in Wisconsin; legal fights elsewhere

Wisconsin voters with disabilities are celebrating a win after a federal judge, citing the Voting Rights Act, ruled that they may get assistance returning their ballots. Several voters sued after a Wisconsin Supreme Court ruling that cast doubt on whether they could. While that resolved the issue in Wisconsin, disabled voters elsewhere may not be so lucky. As Republicans have pushed to tighten voting restrictions amid former President Donald Trump’s false claims of a stolen 2020 election, the voting rights of people with disabilities have sometimes been harmed. They are pushing back, with legal challenges in at least eight states that make it difficult or impossible for people with certain disabilities to vote.

WEC rescinds 'ballot curing' guidance

MADISON, Wis. — The Wisconsin Elections Commission voted 4-1 to remove a guidance it issued in 2016 that allowed clerks to add missing information on absentee ballot return envelopes — a…

Whistleblower: China, India had agents working for Twitter

Twitter’s former security chief told Congress Tuesday there was “at least one agent” from China’s intelligence service on Twitter’s payroll — and that the company knowingly allowed India to add agents to the company roster as well. These were some of the troubling revelations from Peiter “Mudge” Zatko, a respected cybersecurity expert and Twitter whistleblower who appeared before the Senate Judiciary Committee to lay out his allegations against the company. Zatko, who was fired earlier this year, said Twitter's leadership is "misleading the public, lawmakers, regulators and even its own board of directors."

Ken Starr, whose probe led to Clinton impeachment, dies

Ken Starr, a former federal appellate judge and a prominent attorney whose criminal investigation of Bill Clinton led to the president’s impeachment, died Tuesday at age 76, his family says. In a probe that lasted five years, Starr looked into fraudulent real estate deals involving a long-time Clinton associate, delved into the removal of documents from the office of deputy White House counsel Vincent Foster after his suicide and assembled evidence of Clinton’s sexual encounters with Monica Lewinsky, a former White House intern. In 2020, he was recruited to help represent President Donald Trump in the nation’s third impeachment trial.

WEDC adds $25M to Main Street Bounceback grant program

MADISON, Wis. -- A grant program that supports Wisconsin small businesses got a boost Tuesday. The Main Street Bounceback program got a $25 million investment, Governor Evers and Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation announced. That brings the total investment in the…

Schumer sending $15M to Democrats, including Barnes; Senate Campaign Committee

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer is transferring $15 million from his campaign account to his party’s candidates, incumbents and political committee for the fall election. That’s according to a Democrat familiar with the situation who insisted on anonymity to discuss it. Schumer is sending $1 million each to four incumbent Democratic senators and five Democratic challengers in battleground states. Schumer also is sending $500,000 each to two other incumbent senators and $5 million to the Democratic Senate Campaign Committee. It's a vote of confidence for Schumer's candidates. Schumer is in line to stay as majority leader if Democrats beat back Republican efforts to wrest control of the Senate.

Wisconsin judge refuses to suspend absentee ballot ruling

A Wisconsin judge has sided with Republicans and declined to suspend his ruling from last week that state law does not allow election clerks to fill in missing information on witness certification envelopes that contain absentee ballots. The Tuesday ruling is expected to be quickly appealed by Democrats. The case is expected to ultimately end up before the conservative-controlled Wisconsin Supreme Court, but it’s unclear whether there could be a ruling before the midterm election that’s just eight weeks away. Democrats argued that the ruling will create “voter whiplash,” but the judge rejected that concern.

Biden hopes ending cancer can be a 'national purpose' for US

President Joe Biden is urging Americans to come together for a new “national purpose” — his administration’s effort to end cancer “as we know it.” At the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Biden on Monday channeled JFK’s famed moonshot speech 60 years ago, likening the space race to his own effort. Biden hopes to move the U.S. closer to the goal he set in February of cutting U.S. cancer fatalities by 50% over the next 25 years and dramatically improving the lives of caregivers and those suffering from cancer. Experts say the objective is attainable — with adequate investments.

Americans give health care system failing mark: AP-NORC poll

A majority of adults in the U.S. say health care is not handled well in the country. That's according to a new poll from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research. The poll reveals public satisfaction with the U.S. health care system is remarkably low, with fewer than half of Americans saying it's handled well in general. Only 12% say it's handled extremely or very well. Americans have similar views about health care for older adults. Overall, the public gives even lower marks for handling of prescription drug costs, the quality of care at nursing homes and mental health care.

9/11 terror attacks reverberate as US marks 21st anniversary

Americans are remembering 9/11 with tear-choked tributes and pleas to “never forget,” 21 years after the deadliest terror attack on U.S. soil. Victims’ relatives and dignitaries gathered Sunday at all three places where hijacked jets crashed on Sept. 11, 2001 — the World Trade Center in New York, the Pentagon and a Pennsylvania field. President Joe Biden told the Pentagon gathering that the U.S. would continue working to root out terrorists. First lady Jill Biden spoke in Shanksville, Pennsylvania. Vice President Kamala Harris attended the ceremony in New York, where politicians are not allowed to speak. The attacks killed nearly 3,000 people.

Biden honors 9/11 victims, vows commitment to thwart terror

President Joe Biden has marked the 21st anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks, taking part in a somber wreath-laying ceremony held at the Pentagon under a steady rain. Biden paid tribute to “extraordinary Americans” who gave their lives on one of the United States' darkest days. Sunday’s ceremony occurred a little more than a year after the Democratic president ended the long and costly war in Afghanistan that was launched in response to the terror attacks. Biden notes even after the U.S. left Afghanistan his administration continues to pursue those responsible for the 9/11 attacks. Biden announced in August the U.S. had killed an al-Qaida leader who helped plot the attacks.

Queen Elizabeth II's coffin takes long road through Scotland

Queen Elizabeth II’s flag-draped coffin has slowly processed through the Scottish countryside on a journey from her beloved Balmoral Castle to the Scottish capital of Edinburgh. Mourners in Scotland packed city streets and lined rural roads, and some tossing flowers to honor the monarch who died Thursday at Balmoral after 70 years on the throne. In Aberdeenshire, farmers lined the route with tractors to honor the queen. In Edinburgh, a huge crowd grew silent as the coffin passed by, then burst into applause. King Charles III was formally proclaimed king on Sunday in the other parts of the United Kingdom — Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland — after a similar ceremony in Britain a day earlier.

Catalan separatists rally as movement frays 5 years on

Over a 100,000 Catalan separatists have rallying in Barcelona in an attempt to reignite the independence movement that is fraying as it nears the five-year anniversary of its failed breakaway bid from Spain. The unity between political parties and the civil society groups that led the October 2017 independence push is in danger of falling apart. The civil group organizing Sunday’s march is strongly opposed to the talks that the Catalan government is holding with Spain’s central government in Madrid. That has led Catalonia’s regional president to announce that he will be the first Catalan president to not attend the annual march for independence.