Thursday March 9th, 2017 5 Top Stories to Start Your Day’’
1. In a statement Wednesday, John Kelly, Homeland Security Secretary, said that people illegally crossing the U.S. southern border has dropped 40 percent since President Trump took office. The number of illegal crossings was 31,578 which dropped to 18,762 with Trump in office. If this trend continues, Kelly said the numbers are trending toward the lowest monthly total in five years.
2. House Ways and Means Committee has become the first to approve the Republicans’ Obamacare repeal bill after a marathon 18 hour session. Republican congressional leaders had sought to fast track the legislation through Congress but the Democrats made clear they would not give up their fight for a more inclusive healthcare plan. The American Medical Association sent a letter to two committees criticizing the plan. The letter stated that, “While we agree that there are problems with the ACA that must be addressed, we cannot support the AHCA as drafted because of the expected decline in health insurance coverage and the potential harm it would cause to vulnerable patient populations.” The growing opposition to the act, biggest concern is that too many people would be taken off the rolls of insured people.
3. Reuters on Wednesday reported that, private contractors working for the Central Intelligence Agency leaked the documents that WikiLeaks published Tuesday. According to the documents, CIA hackers could get into Apple iPhones, devices running Google’s Android software and other electronics such as smart TV’s which would allow those who being spied upon, to have their text and voice messages captured before they were encrypted with sophisticated software.
4. The entire U.S. Senate in a letter sent Tuesday asked the Trump administration to take more aggressive steps to counter the growing number of anonymous bomb threats against Jewish organizations and institutions across the country. The letter is addressed to Attorney General Jeff Sessions, FBI Director James Comey and Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly. The senators say these “cowardly acts aim to create an atmosphere of fear.” They say at least 98 incidents against community centers and schools in 33 states have been reported in the first two months of 2017 alone.
5. U.S. Senators Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) on Wednesday sent a letter to the Department of Justice (DOJ) and FBI asking for evidence to back up President Donald Trump’s allegation that President Barack Obama wiretapped him before the November election. They wrote, “We would take any abuse of wiretapping authorities for political purposes very seriously. We would be equally alarmed to learn that a court found enough evidence of criminal activity or contact with a foreign power to legally authorize a wiretap” It was Saturday morning when President Trump stated through Twitter that he just learned that President Obama had wiretapped Trump’s campaign phone line. The former President denied any such thing.
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