US Domestic News Roundup: Hunter Biden prosecutor faced no political pressure in probe, he tells lawmakers; US Senate Democrats block Republican bid to aid Israel, not Ukraine and more

The president's son has said he struggled with addictions to alcohol and crack cocaine. US Senate Democrats block Republican bid to aid Israel, not Ukraine U.S. Senate Democrats on Tuesday blocked a Republican effort to win quick approval for a bill providing emergency aid to Israel that passed the House of Representatives last week, but that provides no assistance for Ukraine's war against Russia.


Devdiscourse News Desk | Updated: 08-11-2023 10:10 IST | Created: 08-11-2023 05:24 IST
US Domestic News Roundup: Hunter Biden prosecutor faced no political pressure in probe, he tells lawmakers; US Senate Democrats block Republican bid to aid Israel, not Ukraine and more
Hunter Biden Image Credit: Wikipedia

Following is a summary of current US domestic news briefs.

Hunter Biden prosecutor faced no political pressure in probe, he tells lawmakers

U.S. Special Counsel David Weiss, who is leading the probe into President Joe Biden's son Hunter Biden, told the Republican-led House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday that he faced no political interference in a nearly seven-hour interview, contradicting earlier whistleblower testimony. Weiss has charged Hunter Biden, 53, with crimes related to owning a firearm while using illegal drugs. The president's son has said he struggled with addictions to alcohol and crack cocaine.

US Senate Democrats block Republican bid to aid Israel, not Ukraine

U.S. Senate Democrats on Tuesday blocked a Republican effort to win quick approval for a bill providing emergency aid to Israel that passed the House of Representatives last week, but that provides no assistance for Ukraine's war against Russia. Republican Senator Roger Marshall said: "Time is of the essence and it's imperative that the Senate not delay delivering this crucial aid to Israel another day," he said.

US lawmakers introduce surveillance reforms intended to curb FBI spying

A bipartisan team of U.S. lawmakers has introduced new legislation intended to curb the FBI's sweeping surveillance powers, saying the bill helps close the loopholes that allow officials to seize Americans' data without a warrant. The bill follows more than a decade of debate over post-Sept. 11, 2001, surveillance powers that allow domestic law enforcement to warrantlessly scan the vast mountains of data gathered by America's foreign surveillance apparatus.

First US polls close as contests in Ohio, Virginia offer preview of 2024

Polls began closing on Tuesday in eastern Kentucky, where the state's gubernatorial contest was among several U.S. elections offering critical clues about where the electorate stands ahead of the 2024 presidential election. Abortion once again was on the ballot in the off-year elections, as Ohioans voted on whether to guarantee abortion rights and Virginians decided whether to hand Republicans the power to impose new limits on the procedure.

As shutdown looms, US House Republicans search for stopgap solution

Republicans who control the U.S. House of Representatives showed no sign on Tuesday of coalescing around a government funding plan to keep federal agencies open, just 10 days before Congress faces its next shutdown deadline. Republican lawmakers, who hold a slim 221-212 House majority, met behind closed doors to debate options on how to structure a stopgap measure known as a continuing resolution, or "CR," that would temporarily fund the government after current funding expires on Nov. 17.

Biden approval falls to lowest level since April -Reuters/Ipsos

U.S. President Joe Biden's popularity slipped this month to its lowest level since April, a Reuters/Ipsos poll showed, the latest data point raising concerns about the Democrat's re-election bid next year. The two-day opinion poll, which ended on Saturday, showed 39% of respondents approved of Biden's performance as president, matching April's reading and down marginally from 40% in October and 42% in September. The poll had a margin of error of about three percentage points.

US Army says it needs $3 billion for 155 mm artillery rounds and production

The U.S. Army needs Congress to approve $3.1 billion to buy 155 millimeter artillery rounds and expand production to quickly replace stocks depleted by shipments to Ukraine and now Israel, an Army official said on Tuesday. The U.S. and allies have sent more than 2 million rounds of 155 ammunition to Ukraine in support of its effort to repel Russia's invasion more than 600 days ago. The U.S. has also sent the artillery to Israel as it fights Hamas.

Republican hopeful Ramaswamy to introduce pledge opposing foreign conflicts

Republican presidential contender Vivek Ramaswamy will make his non-interventionist foreign policy a central plank of his pitch to voters in the coming weeks, he told Reuters, as he seeks to position himself as the least likely candidate in the nominating contest to wade into a foreign war. In an interview, Ramaswamy said he would formally introduce a pledge on Tuesday in Miami, on the eve of the third Republican primary date, laying out non-interventionist foreign policy principles. If he does win the Republican nomination and later the 2024 general election against Democratic President Joe Biden, Ramaswamy said, he would require all political appointees to sign the pledge, and he would eventually ask other elected officials to sign on as well.

Democrats' dilemma: Biden's agenda is popular, but he is not

Andrea Singmaster is thankful for President Joe Biden. He helped secure funding to clean up a contaminated site in her Philadelphia suburb and his efforts to crack down on Medicare drug prices will help family members financially manage arthritis and Crohn's disease. But she is not so thankful that Biden, who turns 81 this month, is running again.

US Supreme Court leans toward allowing domestic-violence gun curbs

U.S. Supreme Court justices on Tuesday appeared inclined to uphold the legality of a federal law that makes it a crime for people under domestic violence restraining orders to have guns in the latest major case to test the willingness of its conservative majority to further expand gun rights. The justices heard arguments in an appeal by President Joe Biden's administration of a lower court's ruling striking down the law - intended to protect victims of domestic abuse - as a violation of the U.S. Constitution's Second Amendment right to "keep and bear arms."

(With inputs from agencies.)

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