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Australia’s Parliament Passes Bill To Legalize Same-Sex Marriage

“Conservative legislators tried to tack religious freedom amendments onto the bill but could not get enough support” writes Nick Visser for huffingtonpost.com. The amendments were consistently rejected by other MPs, who have called the suggestions “superfluous” and argued that the existing freedom of religion laws would protect Australia’s religious institutions. The amendments, noted AP, could still be considered at a later date.Even still, debates and votes to the amendments delayed the final passage. Source: huffingtonpost.com Share This:

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Marriage equality has finally become law in Australia, at last

“It was left to the last minute, but marriage equality is finally legal in Australia” writes Johnny Lieu for mashable.com. Marriage equality supporters gathered in front of Parliament House in Australia’s capital, Canberra, to be there for the historic decision.Although Australians voted overwhelmingly for marriage equality in mid-November, there had been a push by conservative politicians for amendments to the bill that claim to protect religious freedoms. Then, 28 days after royal assent, same-sex marriage will officially be legal in Australia.These have been labelled as “superfluous” by conservative politician Christopher…

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TAX CUT BRAWL BEGINS IN SENATE…

“Democrats say the Republican tax plan is a giveaway to corporations and the wealthy at the expense of working Americans” writes unknown author for cnbc.com. While campaign donors are strongly behind the push for tax cuts, the American public is sharply divided.Republicans acknowledge that failure to pass a tax bill could jeopardize their control of the Senate and House of Representatives in next year’s congressional elections.Among Americans aware of the Republican tax plan, 49 percent said they were opposed, up from 41 percent in October, according to a Nov. 23-27…

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Victoria becomes first state to legalise assisted dying

“Since then the Victorian legislation marks the first time in the world that a parliament has gone through an extensive process to introduce voluntary assisted dying, with other countries introducing laws through referendum or a court process” writes Melissa Davey for theguardian.com. The legislation will now go through an 18-month implementation period before it comes into effect in June 2019. Source: theguardian.com Share This:

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Democrats zero in on healthcare with amendments to Senate tax bill

“Democrats on the panel offered several amendments to slow or undo the tax bill, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, if it had negative effects on the healthcare system” writes Joseph Lawler for washingtonexaminer.com. Democrats focused on healthcare, not taxes, in the first batch of amendments to the Senate Republican tax bill Wednesday night, trying to raise the alarm about how the bill would affect Obamacare by repealing its individual mandate. “This tax bill is now officially a healthcare bill,” Ron Wyden of Oregon, the ranking Democrat on the Senate…

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Commons debates Brexit bill after PMQs clashes over police cuts

“This afternoon’s debate will focus on amendments looking at regulations such as workers rights and environmental protections after Brexit” writes Lizzy Buchan for independent.co.uk. The Government defeated the first round of opposition amendments last night, one of which would have forced Ms May to offer a vote on the final deal to the devolved administrations.Brexit loomed large over this week’s clash – despite very few mentions in the exchange – which comes as MPs prepared for a second day of line-by-line scrutiny of the EU (Withdrawal) Bill, the crucial legislation that will…

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Russia drafts legislation targeting foreign media

“I expect the amendments to be applied strictly quid pro quo in response to the moves against Russian media.”” writes Vladimir Isachenkov for sun-sentinel.com. The law requests all groups that receive foreign funding and engage in vaguely defined political activities to register as foreign agents.The amendments under consideration in Russia were proposed by lawmakers in the State Duma, the lower house of the Russian legislature. Source: sun-sentinel.com Share This:

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Nancy Pelosi: GOP amendments to tax bill an ‘act of desperation’

“The Senate bill is expected to have two major changes from the House bill, specifically that it will delay the implementation of a lower corporate tax rate until 2019 and eliminate the state and local tax deduction” writes Al Weaver for washingtonexaminer.com. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., panned the Republican tax reform push Thursday as an “act of desperation” moments before the House Ways and Means Committee was set to release the “manager’s amendment” and Senate Republicans released their bill later on Thursday “This new draft … appears to…

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Republicans brush off Democrats’ amendments on deficits, state and local taxes

“Bill Pascrell, D-N.J., offered an amendment to restore the state and local tax deduction to its full value” writes Joseph Lawler for washingtonexaminer.com. The GOP bill would limit deductions for state and local property taxes to $10,000 and eliminate them for income or sales taxes.Democrats have sought to portray the elimination of the deduction as a tax increase on families.House Republicans defeated the first two Democratic amendments to the tax reform bill Tuesday, swatting away measures to restore the state and local deduction to the bill and to undo the…

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Republicans plan four-day tax bill markup but no amendments on House floor

“After the committee advances the bill, however, Republicans plan to not allow amendments on the House floor” writes Joseph Lawler for washingtonexaminer.com. Republicans intended to have Senate legislation move quickly behind the House bill.While Democrats won’t be able to offer floor amendments in the House, they will be able to do so in the Senate.House Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady, R-Texas, laid out his plans for moving the new Republican tax legislation through the House Friday, setting expectations for a marathon of legislating in the committee. Source: washingtonexaminer.com Share This:

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