Briefing National – December 15, 2017

  • Florida Sen. Marco Rubio has put the survival of the GOP tax overhaul plan in serious doubt after announcing he would not vote for the bill unless they can find $80 billion for a larger child tax credit [NBC News].
  • The GOP tax bill is projected to add $1.4 trillion to the deficit over 10 years, but it might cost much more than that. Many of the assumptions about cost are based on ending individual tax breaks which some argue will never happen. The bill also relies on higher revenue estimates than many say are reasonable [Axios].
  • House Speaker Paul Ryan is denying reports he may retire from Congress next year [Associated Press].
  • The FCC voted Thursday to kill Obama-era rules regulating the internet. The rules prevented internet providers from blocking or slowing down some websites. ISPs could also charge more for customers to access certain content online [USA Today].
  • Republicans and Democrats in Congress are fighting over funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program. Money for the program ran out at the end of September, and it might not be replenished until next year [Politico].
  • Black women voters powered Democrat Doug Jones to his unlikely victory in Alabama. Now they want the party to start addressing their issues [Associated Press].
  • Republican Senators are joining the push to lift the veil of secrecy on sexual harassment accusations against members of Congress and force members to pay for their own legal settlements instead of using taxpayer money [Reuters].

On this day in history:

  • 1791 – The Bill of Rights became law when it was ratified by the Virginia General Assembly.
  • 1890 – Sioux Indian leader Sitting Bull was killed in a skirmish with U.S. soldiers along the Grand River in South Dakota.
  • 1933 – The Twenty-first Amendment becomes effective, repealing the Eighteenth Amendment that prohibited the sale, manufacture, and transportation of alcohol.
  • 1939 – Gone with the Wind premiers at Loew’s Theater in Atlanta.
  • 1961 – Adolf Eichmann is sentenced to death after being found guilty by an Israeli court of 15 criminal charges, including charges of crimes against humanity.
  • 1973 – The American Psychiatric Association reversed its longstanding position and declared being gay isn’t a mental illness.