Reuters US Domestic News Summary
In the past week, U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkan has imposed sentences ranging from 14 to 45 days on four people who pleaded guilty to unlawful parading and picketing inside the Capitol building on Jan. 6 — a misdemeanor offense. Biden's Supreme Court commission to issue preliminary report Thursday President Joe Biden's commission studying potential U.S. Supreme Court changes such as expanding the number of justices or imposing term limits on them will release its preliminary draft report on Thursday, the White House said on Wednesday.
Following is a summary of current US domestic news briefs.
'There have to be consequences:' Judge ups sentences for U.S. Capitol rioters
A federal judge in Washington has repeatedly sentenced people who stormed the U.S. Capitol to more prison time than prosecutors sought, saying that even people who were not violent should face consequences for joining the unprecedented assault. In the past week, U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkan has imposed sentences ranging from 14 to 45 days on four people who pleaded guilty to unlawful parading and picketing inside the Capitol building on Jan. 6 — a misdemeanor offense.
Biden's Supreme Court commission to issue preliminary report Thursday
President Joe Biden's commission studying potential U.S. Supreme Court changes such as expanding the number of justices or imposing term limits on them will release its preliminary draft report on Thursday, the White House said on Wednesday. Biden signed an executive order in April creating the commission. It held its first meeting the following month.
Maine can bar religious exemptions to COVID-19 vaccine mandate, judge rules
A U.S. judge ruled on Wednesday that Maine can bar religious exemptions to its requirement that healthcare workers in the state get vaccinated against COVID-19, a day after a judge ordered New York to allow such exemptions to its mandate. U.S. District Judge Jon Levy in Bangor, Maine, said the healthcare workers who brought the case have not been prevented from staying true to their religious beliefs, although refusing the vaccine will cost them their jobs.
Texas governor moves state sharply to the right ahead of 2022 election
Texas Governor Greg Abbott's decision to bar private companies from enforcing COVID-19 vaccine mandates is the latest sign he is betting the state's electorate remains solidly Republican ahead of his re-election bid next year. In recent months, Abbott has backed a series of measures that have pulled Texas sharply to the right, including the country's most restrictive abortion ban, a raft of voting limits, an effort to fund a border wall, restrictions on transgender student athletes and expanded gun rights.
Lev Parnas, a onetime associate of former Donald Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani, used $100,000 from a wealthy Russian businessman to make illegal donations to U.S. politicians, a federal prosecutor said on Wednesday. Parnas used the funds to “grease the wheels” to help the businessman, Andrey Muraviev, obtain licenses to operate legal cannabis companies in the United States, Assistant U.S. Attorney Aline Flodr said in her opening argument in Parnas’ trial on charges of violating campaign finance laws.
FDA sets new goal for lower salt in everyday American food
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Wednesday is pushing to cut salt levels by an average of 12% in food ranging from packaged meats to cheese, trying to clamp down on a growing epidemic of preventable health issues that has plagued the country. In far-reaching guidelines, the FDA is seeking voluntary short-term lower sodium targets for food manufacturers, chain restaurants and food service operators - focusing largely on processed and take-out food.
Firefighting crews battle wildfire that threatens Reagan ranch in California
California firefighters are taking advantage of a break in strong winds on Wednesday afternoon to get aircraft aloft and dump retardant on a fast-moving wildfire that is within a half mile of former President Ronald Reagan's ranch, officials said.
A crew of roughly 1,500 firefighters have so far successfully steered the Alisal fire away from the Reagan ranch, where the former U.S. leader hosted the likes of Queen Elizabeth and former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev, said Andrew Madsen, a spokesman for Los Padres National Forest, where the blaze is centered.
The U.S. Justice Department has launched an investigation into juvenile detention facilities in Texas after receiving reports of physical and sexual abuse by staff members against children, U.S. Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights Kristen Clarke said on Wednesday. "Our investigation will focus on whether there is a pattern or practice of physical or sexual abuse of children in Texas's secure facilities," Clarke told a news conference.
U.S. Supreme Court justices on Wednesday leaned toward reinstating convicted Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev's death sentence for his role in the 2013 attack that killed three people and wounded more than 260 others. The court's conservative majority appeared sympathetic during arguments in the case toward the Justice Department's challenge to a 2020 lower court ruling that upheld Tsarnaev's conviction but overturned his death sentence.
Biden enlists Target, Walmart to fix bottlenecks threatening holiday sales
President Joe Biden on Wednesday urged the private sector to help ease supply chain blockages that are threatening to disrupt the U.S. holiday season and said the White House plans a nationwide overhaul of the clogged system. Biden said the Port of Los Angeles would join the Port of Long Beach, two of the country's busiest, in expanding round-the-clock operations to unload an estimated 500,000 containers waiting on cargo ships offshore.
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)