US Domestic News Roundup: U.S. Democrats battle over climate change plans in $3.5 trillion bill; 'Water's Soul': Massive white sculpture makes a statement in New York harbor and more
1 decision let the law take effect in a separate challenge brought by abortion providers in the state. Black Americans, women make big strides on top U.S. corporate boards -report Black people made record-breaking gains over the last year in securing seats on boards of S&P 500 companies, while women came close to accounting for a third of corporate directors, according to a report from executive search firm Spencer Stuart released on Tuesday.
Following is a summary of current US domestic news briefs.
U.S. Democrats battle over climate change plans in $3.5 trillion bill
Negotiators of a U.S. bill to invest up to $3.5 trillion to expand social programs and attack climate change gave hints of progress on Monday, but some Democrats were resigned to the increasing likelihood that a proposal to reduce carbon emissions will be weakened or scrapped. "Over the last weekend I held many productive conversations" with lawmakers and the White House, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, a Democrat, said. "We still have work to do," he added, without providing details in a Senate floor speech.
'Water's Soul': Massive white sculpture makes a statement in New York harbor
A towering statue of a woman's head with her index finger pressing on her lips now faces lower Manhattan along the Hudson River, inviting the chaotic metropolis to stop and listen. "The water, when it moves, makes a special sound, very special," Barcelona-based artist Jaume Plensa said.
Former President Donald Trump on Monday sued the U.S. congressional committee investigating the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol, claiming members made an illegal request for his White House records. Trump, in a lawsuit https://storage.courtlistener.com/recap/gov.uscourts.dcd.236632/gov.uscourts.dcd.236632.1.0.pdf filed in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, asserted that materials sought by the House of Representatives committee are covered by a legal doctrine known as executive privilege, which protects the confidentiality of some White House communications.
President Joe Biden's administration on Monday asked the U.S. Supreme Court to block a Texas law that imposes a near-total ban on abortion, calling the Republican-backed measure plainly unconstitutional and specifically designed to evade judicial scrutiny. The administration asked the Supreme Court to quickly reverse a decision this month by the New Orleans-based 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to lift a judge's order blocking the law while litigation over the statute's legality continues. The justices in a 5-4 Sept. 1 decision let the law take effect in a separate challenge brought by abortion providers in the state.
Black Americans, women make big strides on top U.S. corporate boards -report
Black people made record-breaking gains over the last year in securing seats on boards of S&P 500 companies, while women came close to accounting for a third of corporate directors, according to a report from executive search firm Spencer Stuart released on Tuesday. Ethnic and racial minorities accounted for 47% of all new directors, compared to 22% in the prior year, according to the report. Nearly all of the increase came from the appointment of Black directors, who made up 33% of new board seats from May of 2020 through May of 2021, up from 11% in the prior period.
Top U.S. envoy to Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad is stepping down, the State Department said on Monday, less than two months after the chaotic U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan and the Taliban takeover of the country. Khalilzad will be replaced by his deputy, Tom West, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in a statement, noting that West will work closely with the U.S. embassy, which is now based in Doha, on U.S. interests in Afghanistan.
Defense counsel in the trial of three white men accused of murdering Black jogger Ahmaud Arbery in Georgia asked potential jurors on Monday whether they considered the Confederate battle flag a racist symbol. Three out of the first group of 20 potential jurors raised their hands when asked the question during jury selection at Glynn County Superior Court in the small coastal city of Brunswick, where Arbery was shot dead on Feb. 23, 2020.
Lawmakers probing the deadly Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol attack by supporters of Donald Trump will move on Tuesday toward bringing contempt of Congress charges against his longtime aide Steve Bannon over his refusal to cooperate. The Democratic-controlled House of Representatives Select Committee is expected to approve a report backing contempt charges against Bannon at a meeting Tuesday evening. That vote will pave the way for the entire House to vote on whether to recommend contempt charges, which could lead to criminal prosecution, against Bannon.
Colin Powell, the first Black U.S. secretary of state, a top military officer and a national security adviser, died on Monday at age 84 due to complications from COVID-19. He was fully vaccinated, his family said. Powell had multiple myeloma, a blood cancer which was in remission, and early-stage Parkinson's disease, said a close friend who asked not to be named. The blood cancer reduces the body's ability to fight infection and puts people at higher risk for a severe case of the virus.
Car-centric Austin is building transit. Will anyone ride it?
In 2019, Diane Guerra and her husband moved out of their two-bedroom apartment in trendy East Austin to buy a house in one of the city's booming northern suburbs. The move doubled their commutes - hers to 40 minutes, his to 30 - but they have no regrets. "We simply couldn't afford any of the larger houses in the city," said Guerra, a 35-year-old executive assistant.
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