Top 5 in Politics: June 26th- July 7th
1. Kate's Law Passed in the House
On Thursday, June 29th, the House of Representatives pushed forward two significant anti-immigration policies. One of them, Kate’s Law, increases penalties on illegal aliens that return to the country after being deported. It was named for a woman who was murdered by an illegal immigrant who had been deported several times.
The other law, entitled “No Sanctuary for Criminals,” intends to take away federal grants from all sanctuary cities and allow victims of illegal immigrants’ crimes to sue the city. Overall, seven Republicans voted “no” and three Democrats voted “yes.” Now, the laws move onto the Senate.
2. Supreme Court Allows Parts of Travel Ban
President Trump’s immigration agenda took another step forward with the Supreme Court making the final decision on the travel ban. After several appellate court failings, portions of the “Muslim Ban” were passed through on Monday, June 26th.
While the Court waits to rule on the entire law, they’ve allowed it for immigrants without a “bona fide” relationship to someone in the United States. Thursday, June 29th was the day that the rules of the travel ban were put in place.
There are questions as to what a “bona fide” relationship is, the Trump administration defined it as siblings, children, parents, sons- and daughters-in-law, and fiancées. Aunts, uncles, grandparents, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and cousins are among those not included in a “bona fide” relationship.
Also allowed are students and workers with visas, but everyone else, as well as refugees, are banned from entering the country if they are from the six countries stated in the executive order.
3. North Korea Missile Launch
On Tuesday, July 4th, North Korea successfully launched an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM). The United States officials say that they’ve been keeping an eye on it, but no defense systems have been armed to take it down.
The missile is of a new variety, running on liquid fuel and acting slower than most other missiles. Yet to be named, this missile was also sent from a new location in North Korea.
President Trump faces a new challenge in that he has to convince other leaders of the wrongdoing of North Korea, namely China, Japan, and South Korea. Thus far, he has had limited success.
4. The Fight Against the Islamic State
The Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), with help from the American militia, have recaptured two key ISIS cities. Raqqa and Mosul, once occupied by the Islamic State, have been taken back street-by-street. Many casualties occurred as a result of the liberation, but more happened due to militant strikes and attacks against the innocent.
Female suicide bombers are becoming commonplace in Mosul, forcing officials to search the crowds for militants of every age and gender. On Wednesday, July 5th, there was at least one such attack. Men and boys still go through a stricter inspection, with identities being thoroughly checked.
The American commitment to Syria was one that the Obama administration tried to avoid, but President Trump appears to only be getting in deeper. There are arguments as to whether that’s a good thing or not.
5. Senate Healthcare Bill
There are questions of party loyalty when it comes to the healthcare bill that is working its way through the Senate. Several Republicans have announced that they will vote “no” unless there are significant changes made to the bill. They pushed the vote to next week, giving time for further changes in the bill as well as in other GOP members’ minds.
Many view the success of the bill as unlikely, but what are the major aspects of the healthcare bill? Lower premiums, higher deductibles, less coverage, but also fewer taxes, mainly for the wealthy. Most critics have argued that the plan is just a watered-down version of Obamacare.