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Christian Science Monitor | USA



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Law made in secret? That's not what makes health-care bill unusual.

In some ways, the GOP health-care legislation represents the most abnormal drafting of a big legislative package in memory. But not because of the secrecy per se.

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Is school too shallow?

Basic recall and reasoning skills will not be enough to help today's students to thrive in a future job market, say some educators.

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Trump claims he tweeted about secret tapes to keep Comey 'honest'

President Trump tweeted Thursday that to his knowledge, no recordings of his private conversation with former FBI Director James Comey existed. 

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Venezuela's Maduro confronts perils of his reliance on the military

For more than two years he put generals in charge of everything from food distribution to new oil and mining projects, but the increasingly embattled Maduro seems aware that the military could one day engineer his downfall.

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Why Medicaid is central to health-care debate

Some Republicans argue that the burgeoning program has become fiscally unsustainable, but advocates say it's more cost-effective than private insurance or Medicare.

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New study links recreational marijuana to increase in car crashes

In a study released Thursday, the Highway Loss Data Institute showed that Oregon, Washington, and Colorado saw car crash incidents rise by 2.7 percent since recreational marijuana was legalized in those states.

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Clues from Georgia on Democrats' future

Democratic darling Jon Ossoff lost in the most expensive House race in history. Republicans have won all the special House races so far this spring, but by narrower margins than usual.

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An epic case of medical fraud – and the agent who cracked it

This is the story of how a Miami psychiatrist managed to beat the system year after year, but finally met his match in a health-care fraud investigator named Alberico Crespo.

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Why Michigan's Iraqi Christians thought Trump would spare their loved ones

After more than 100 Iraqi Christians were rounded up for deportation in June, the American Civil Liberties Union filed a class action suit on behalf of the detainees. On Wednesday, a federal judge heard arguments on whether to grant an emergency stay.

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Civilian oversight of military: How Trump is testing its minimum levels

Civilian control of the military has been a core US value since the founding of the Republic. In Afghanistan, Syria, and Yemen, Trump seems to be exercising a light touch as commander-in-chief.

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US-China security talks on North Korea strain over tensions surrounding US student's death

The Trump administration is likely to put pressure on China to economically constrict North Korea, the isolated nation's largest ally.

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Why a good racial mix may also create a sense of comfort at school

A new study suggests that middle-schoolers in more racially diverse schools feel safer and less alone.

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US soccer remembers Tony DiCicco, one of its most influential coaches

The women's US soccer coach led the team to gold at the 1996 Atlanta Games and then the '99 World Cup crown, igniting a passion for US soccer and women's sports never seen before.

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The man looking to make the VA work

In a Washington stalled by partisan gridlock, Dr. David Shulkin may have a better shot at getting things done. A former Obama appointee picked by President Trump, he was confirmed by a Senate vote of 100-0.

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A Democrat shows how to win over Trump voters

Rep. Cheri Bustos (D) of Illinois, who works shifts alongside factory workers in her district, is poised to help her party learn from its 2016 loss – and potentially regain control of the House next year.

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Atlanta voters head to polls for closely watched House seat special election

Georgia's 6th congressional district election Tuesday between long-time Republican official Karen Handel and rising Democrat Jon Ossoff could provide a litmus test of GOP strength and a sign of things to come in midterm elections.

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'Secretive' health care bill construction is just standard procedure in Washington

While many look with disapproval on the Republican effort to use a cloak-and-dagger approach to sneak a health care bill through the Senate, a look at history reveals that this process is far from new.  

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What Philando Castile verdict says about path of police reform

Settlements may be provoking a form of private sector oversight on police departments – namely through the pressures liability insurers impose on the departments they’re covering.

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Is America’s political atmosphere dangerously hot?

History suggests that the fiery rhetoric is not new. What’s different is Americans’ growing inability to see humanity in the opposition.

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Beyond Carter verdict: Helping teens battle suicidal thoughts

The Carter case highlights an aspect of suicidal thinking that deserves more understanding, many experts say: Namely, that there is often ambivalence involved.

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US Supreme Court to hear Wisconsin electoral redistricting case

In what will be one of the biggest cases of the upcoming Supreme Court term, the justices will rule on the constitutionality of 'manipulating electoral boundaries for an unfair political advantage.' 

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What's behind fewer African-American voters at the polls

By one measure, 14 percent fewer African-Americans than expected voted in Georgia's special election primary, with men being less likely than women to cast a ballot. The runoff between Democrat Jon Ossoff and Republican Karen Handel ends June 20.

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How to govern under legal cloud? A one-word strategy emerges.

On Friday, President Trump appeared to confirm that he personally is under investigation. Clinton White House veterans share how they dealt with ongoing legal scrutiny.

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After the fire: Volunteers help Gatlinburg find hope

In this time of hand-wringing over a divided country and boiling civic hostilities, the volunteers living on church cots and in campers in a fire-ravaged mountain town seem an affirmation of spirit.

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Congress comes together over that all-American sport: baseball

The annual congressional game carried on after Thursday's shooting, continuing a century-old tradition of bipartisanship and unity. Republicans and Democrats unite in support of Rep. Steve Scalise of Lousiana, who remains in critical condition. Dems win 11-2.

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US could send 4,000 additional troops to quell Taliban insurgency in Afghanistan

In response to a rising threat posed by the Islamic State and a growing number of American casualties in Afghanistan, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis is expected to announce a troop surge in the area to support a war effort that has extended over three US presidencies.  

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A big win for public health: teen vaping falls, study says

A new study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found an overall decline for the first time in the use of vaping devices with teens since the agency began tracking their use in 2011.

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What Congress is doing to stop Russian hackers next time

On Thursday, the Senate passed fresh Russian sanctions. Congress is also looking at US digital defenses and has four committees investigating Russian meddling in 2016.

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America's dental-care gap is wide. How some states are trying to close it.

In Minnesota and other states, dental hygienists are being trained to give basic dental care at lower prices. That can help dental practices expand to treat uninsured patients or to accept Medicaid recipients despite low reimbursements.

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Alex Jones flap: How should media handle conspiracy theories in the Trump era?

Behind the furor over NBC News host Megyn Kelly's decision to interview Jones, a far-right radio host and conspiracy theorist, on June 18 is an ethical debate that is in many ways particular to today's political climate.

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Southern Baptists reach consensus, denouncing ‘alt-right’ movement

At their annual convention, Southern Baptists voted to formally denounce the 'alt-right' political movement. The resolution comes after a day-long disagreement over the wording of the statement, but resulted in a standing ovation from the convention’s 5,000 members. 

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Digital burnout leads to a resurgence of vintage typewriters, and it isn't just a fad

Over the past decade, vintage typewriters have attracted a new generation of fans. Organized public events contribute to the growing craze, where typewriter aficionados come together and try different vintage machines.

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Poll: Americans don't think Trump respects the nation's traditions

A new poll shows many Americans, including Republicans, feel President Trump shows a lack of respect for democratic institutions and question his handling of major issues like foreign policy and climate change.

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After ballpark shooting, a call for civility, courage

The announcement that the congressional charity baseball game would go on as planned Thursday brought a standing ovation.

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Can't afford another teacher? Try a 'makerspace' instead

Cash-strapped school systems are turning to traveling teaching teams to help supplement their course offerings, especially in science, technology, and math.

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For children who have faced serious trauma, a place to learn

In New Orleans – where researchers estimate that children suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder at rates three times the national average – one school offers severely traumatized students an alternative program.

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Virginia gubernatorial primary could offer glimpse into midterm elections under Trump

In the Republican race Ed Gillespie's narrow victory against former Trump state campaign chairman Corey Stewart shows the president's enduring appeal among GOP voters in a state where Democrats have won every statewide election since 2009.

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Is Trump 'disrupting' his own foreign-policy team? The case of Qatar.

President Trump's public, off-the-cuff foreign-policy commentaries are seemingly disconnected from his own team's consensus. That can serve a purpose, or, say experts, lead to setbacks for US interests.

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Flint public health and safety officials charged in water contamination case

Michigan health official Nick Lyon could face up to 15 years in prison for 'failing to alert the public' about lead contamination of the Flint water supply. 

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Democrats in Congress file suit against Trump for violating emoluments clause

Democrats in the Senate and House filed a lawsuit against President Trump Wednesday. Nearly 200 plaintiffs allege that he has violated the Constitution by remaining invested in the Trump Organization, which means he could benefit financially from foreign governments.

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Sessions defends himself, denying allegations during Senate testimony

During his testimony, Attorney General Jeff Sessions denied collusion with Russian officials during the 2016 presidential election and denounced suggestion his recommendation to fire James Comey had to do with the Russian probe. 

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Rep. Scalise shot at congressional baseball practice

House majority whip Steve Scalise was shot while on second base during a congressional baseball practice Wednesday morning. He remains in stable condition at George Washington University Hospital.

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Three key questions Sessions didn't answer

In his testimony before the Senate intelligence committee Tuesday, Attorney General Jeff Sessions declined to answer a number of key questions, citing Justice Department policy.

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Shakespeare in the Park: When all the world's a stage for outrage

The Public Theater’s 'Julius Caesar' adds kindling to the national shouting match that’s become characterized by anger and insults – so much so that three-quarters of Americans in a new poll say incivility has become a 'national crisis.'

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US corporations and young Cuban-Americans vie to maintain détente with Cuba

The White House’s expected revision of former President Barack Obama’s policies on US-Cuba relations has sparked opposition from young Cuban-Americans and US companies that have vested interests on the communist island. 

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Senate unites in sanctions against Russia

Senate Democrats and Republicans agreed Monday that Russia's destabilizing involvement in Ukraine, Crimea, Syria, and the US election justified creating and reinforcing sanctions against 'corrupt Russian actors.'

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Republicans push to reduce Utah monument, tribes resist

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke recommended Monday to return the federally protected Bears Ears National Monument in Utah to the control of the state. A coalition of Western tribes resists this recommendation to lose protections on the 'lands they consider sacred.'

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Sessions to shed light on Russia and Comey in US Senate hearing

US Attorney General Jeff Sessions prepares to answer questions Tuesday posed by the Senate Intelligence Committee. The event is expected to further shed light on former FBI Director James Comey’s firing and Russia’s involvement in the 2016 US presidential election. 

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Are the courts treating Trump differently than other presidents?

The 9th Circuit handed down the Trump administration's latest legal defeat Monday, ruling unanimously to maintain a block on the revised travel ban. Is President Trump being denied the 'presumption of regularity' extended to other presidents?

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For Trump, new week brings series of especially steep tests

Attorney General Jeff Sessions is scheduled to appear tomorrow before the Senate intelligence committee, just days after former FBI Director James Comey.

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