News, Straight to the Point

WASHINGTON — It goes without saying that a Supreme Court ruling against Obamacare would be devastating for President Barack Obama, dealing a blow to his signature domestic achievement, as well as the millions of Americans who would no longer be able to afford health coverage. But it's not a zero-sum game.

The perils of a Court ruling to erase Obamacare subsidies in dozens of states extend to Republican governors who are eying the presidency in 2016.

The justices met Friday morning, two days after oral arguments in King v. Burwell, to cast their votes and decide whether the law restricts health insurance tax subsidies to state-run exchanges, as opposed to the federal exchange.

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The Department of Justice issued a report on Wednesday detailing what it alleged was the Ferguson Police Department's pattern of racial bias and violations of people's Constitutional rights.

Shortly after the release, Attorney General Eric Holder held a news conference in which he said the police had created a "highly toxic environment" for the residents of Ferguson, especially for blacks.

"These policing practices disproportionately harm African American residents," Holder said, according to prepared remarks from the news conference. "In fact, our review of the evidence found no alternative explanation for the disproportionate impact on African American residents other than implicit and explicit racial bias."

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The circumstances surrounding Missouri Auditor Tom Schweich's (R) sudden death last week remained a mystery even as the state's political establishment prepared to pay its respects today to the man who was the GOP's leading gubernatorial candidate.

Schweich died Thursday of an apparent suicide, just minutes after arranging a meeting with reporters to go public with allegations that the state Republican Party's top official had been spreading misinformation about his religion.

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Republican politicians and conservative pundits alike have been apoplectic in recent days over President Obama's approach to combating the Islamic State terror group in the Middle East in general and his administration's hesitance to label the group's militants as Islamic in particular.

The outrage surged against a backdrop of brutal attacks carried out by the terror group, also known as ISIL or ISIS, as well as a pair of shootings at a free speech event and a synagogue in Copenhagen, Denmark.

By Thursday, the right's rage had spiraled into a litmus test in which potential 2016 Republican presidential contenders were leaping to tell the public whether they believed Obama really "loves America."

In some ways, the latest test unfolded much the same way as the last one did. In that case, the issue of the moment was unexpectedly and suddenly about vaccine mandates.

Here is a brief look at how the GOP's latest debate took root:

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WASHINGTON — Stalemate in the war over President Barack Obama's unilateral actions on immigration has put the Republican-led Congress on a path to partially shutting down the Department of Homeland Security on February 27.

With just five legislative days to go before the funding deadline, the House and Senate are at a standstill and there are growing signs that Congress won't act in time.

Here are five reasons why.

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Since news broke that Rep. Aaron Schock (R-IL) has an ornately-decorated congressional office styled after a room from Downton Abbey, there's been an increased focus on the Illinois congressman's spending. Schock, according to Politico and USA Today, charters private planes, stays in some of the most expensive hotels around the world, and uses a personal photographer. Here are a few of Schock's more lavish indulgences.

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You'd be forgiven for not understanding why measles vaccinations and the anti-vaccine movement have been dominating headlines the last two days, making it the improbable first litmus test for 2016 Republican presidential aspirants that has owned the latest news cycle.

Believe it or not, it all started at Disneyland.

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Even before it got to the Supreme Court, the latest challenge to Obamacare baffled the people who drafted the law and tracked its passage. Reporters, Hill staff, Congressional Budget Office analysts -- nobody recalled Congress intending for the law's crucial subsidies to be limited to state-run exchanges and invalid on the federal HealthCare.gov.

That's what the King v. Burwell plaintiffs allege, though. In recent days, weeks and months, more and more evidence has emerged that nobody who was involved thought that the law works the way its opponents now say it does. As The New Republic's Brian Beutler put it last week, the conservative version of events "has crossed the fuzzy line dividing revisionist history from X-Files-style conspiracy theory."

Those supporting the challenge dismiss the findings as ex post facto and irrelevant to the case. But nevertheless, here are some of the latest bits of evidence to emerge.

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