US Domestic News Roundup: Keystone cleanup turns remote Kansas valley into a small town; Biden admin says U.S. wrongly revoked Oppenheimer's security clearance in 1954 and more

A spokesman for Pelosi said she supports including the TikTok provision in legislation to fund the government that the House of Representatives is set to take up next week. Brittney Griner says she will advocate for Americans detained abroad, resume career U.S. basketball star Brittney Griner, who on Friday left an Army medical center where she had been recuperating following her release from a Russian penal colony as part of a prisoner swap, said she would work to help bring other detained Americans home and planned to resume her WNBA career.


Devdiscourse News Desk | Updated: 18-12-2022 18:38 IST | Created: 18-12-2022 18:30 IST
US Domestic News Roundup: Keystone cleanup turns remote Kansas valley into a small town; Biden admin says U.S. wrongly revoked Oppenheimer's security clearance in 1954 and more
US President Joe Biden (Photo Credit: Twitter) Image Credit: ANI

Following is a summary of current US domestic news briefs.

Keystone cleanup turns remote Kansas valley into a small town

Farmer Bill Pannbacker got a call earlier this month from a representative from TC Energy Corp, telling him that its Keystone Pipeline, which runs through his farmland in rural Kansas, had suffered an oil leak. But he was not prepared for what he saw on his land, which he owns with his wife, Chris. Oil had shot out of the pipeline and coated what he estimated was nearly an acre of pasture uphill of the pipe, which is set into a valley.

Biden admin says U.S. wrongly revoked Oppenheimer's security clearance in 1954

The Biden administration on Friday reversed a 1954 decision by the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) to revoke the security clearance of Robert Oppenheimer, known as the "father of the atomic bomb" for his work on the Manhattan Project. Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said in a written order that the since-dissolved AEC acted out of political motives when it revoked Oppenheimer's security clearance nearly 70 years ago. Oppenheimer died in 1967.

Father of accused Illinois gunman faces charges in July 4 parade mass shooting

An Illinois prosecutor has filed felony charges against the father of the man accused of opening fire on a crowd watching a July Fourth parade in Chicago's Highland Park suburb five months ago, killing seven people and injuring dozens. The father, Robert Crimo Jr., turned himself in to police on Friday under an arrest warrant charging him with seven counts of reckless conduct related to helping his son to obtain a state firearms license in 2019.

Jan 6 defendant, second man charged with conspiring to kill FBI agents

A defendant charged in connection with the Jan. 6 riots at the U.S. Capitol has been indicted on charges of conspiring with a second man to kill the FBI agents investigating him, the Department of Justice said on Friday. Edward Kelley, the 33-year-old Jan. 6 defendant, and Austin Carter, 26, are both charged in a criminal complaint with conspiracy, retaliating against a federal official, solicitation of a crime of violence and making threats across state lines.

U.S. Justice Department moves to eliminate cocaine sentencing disparity

U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland instructed federal prosecutors on Friday to end disparities in the way they charge offenses involving crack cocaine and powder cocaine. The change, outlined in a pair of internal memos released by the Justice Department on Friday, is a win for criminal justice reform advocates, who point out that the current sentencing regime has led to the disproportionate incarceration of Black Americans since the policy was adopted nearly 40 years ago.

El Paso mayor declares state of emergency over influx of migrants from Mexico border

The mayor of the Texas border city of El Paso declared a state of emergency on Saturday, citing the hundreds of migrants sleeping on the streets in cold temperatures and the thousands being apprehended every day. Mayor Oscar Leeser, a Democrat, said the emergency declaration would give city authorities the resources and ability to shelter migrants who have crossed the Mexican border.

Top U.S. Democratic campaign groups move to return Bankman-Fried donations

The Democratic Party's three top campaign groups are preparing to return over $1.1 million they have received from imprisoned cryptocurrency tycoon Sam Bankman-Fried, they said on Friday. In a statement, the Democratic National Committee said it was setting aside $815,000 in funds received from Bankman-Fried in light of "potential campaign finance violations" made by the billionaire.

Pelosi backs adding TikTok government device ban to funding bill

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi supports adding legislation passed by the Senate this week, which would bar federal government employees from using Chinese-owned TikTok on government-owned devices, to a government funding bill. A spokesman for Pelosi said she supports including the TikTok provision in legislation to fund the government that the House of Representatives is set to take up next week.

Brittney Griner says she will advocate for Americans detained abroad, resume career

U.S. basketball star Brittney Griner, who on Friday left an Army medical center where she had been recuperating following her release from a Russian penal colony as part of a prisoner swap, said she would work to help bring other detained Americans home and planned to resume her WNBA career. Griner, a two-time Olympic gold medalist and eight-time Women's National Basketball Association (WNBA) All-Star, left the Brooke Army Medical Center a week after she arrived at Fort Sam Houston in Texas, CNN reported.

U.S. House committee set to discuss Trump tax returns on Tuesday

A U.S. House of Representatives committee will meet on Tuesday to discuss former President Donald Trump's tax returns, which it obtained late last month after a long court fight, according to a source familiar with the matter. The Democratic-controlled House Ways and Means Committee's closed-door meeting will come just two weeks before Republicans are set to assume the majority in the House, which they narrowly won in November's midterm elections.

(With inputs from agencies.)

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