Trump ‘unhappy’ with new shutdown deal – live updates

A House vote on the border security deal to avoid another government shutdown could come as early as tomorrow according to Majority Leader Steny Hoyer.

Hoyer says Hse could vote on border security pkg "maybe as early as tomorrow"

A number of Democrats will unveil legislation on Wednesday that will allow people between the ages of 50-64 to buy into Medicare. The idea of expanding Medicare has long been popular among Democrats. There were past proposals to allow people over 55 to buy in and, on the left, Medicare for All has become a rallying cry.

A new name to add to your Democratic health proposal lexicon: “Medicare at 50.” pic.twitter.com/50kdCCp4MQ

Continue reading...

Trump gets ready for State of the Union address – live news

Donald Trump is expected to pick Treasury Department official David Malpass to head the World Bank, Politico reports.

The choice is a clear sign the Trump administration is looking to rein in international financial institutions, according to Politico. Malpass has been critical of the World Bank, global organizations like it “have grown larger and more intrusive” and “the challenge of refocusing them has become urgent and more difficult.”

A top aide to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told health insurance executives that Democratic leadership has deep reservations about single payer healthcare, the Intercept reports.

Wendell Primus, Pelosi’s top healthcare adviser, met with Blue Cross Blue Shield executives in December and told them Democrats were more focused on lowering prescription drug prices, rather than pushing for “Medicare for All” as some progressives would prefer.

Continue reading...

Number of uninsured Americans increases by 7m in four years

Survey results come after Republican attacks on government-backed health programs, including the Affordable Care Act

About 7 million fewer Americans have health insurance today than did four years ago, a new survey has found, the highest uninsured rate since 2014. The results come after sustained Republican attacks on government-backed health schemes, including the Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare.

The survey’s findings come as the public is incre...

Will Florida’s new Republican governor keep his vow of bipartisanship?

So far, Ron DeSantis has nominated prominent Democrats to lead and pledged his support to the environment and clean water

Two months after narrowly winning a contentious election in which he nailed his colors firmly to the mast of Trumpism, Ron DeSantis will be sworn in as Florida’s 46th governor on Tuesday with voters in the nation’s third most populous state still unsure exactly what they will be getting.

Many of the Republican’s picks for his new administration during the seven weeks’ transition since his progressive Democratic opponent Andrew Gillum conceded have, predictably, followed his predecessor Rick Scott’s brand of hardline conservatism. For example, Mary Mayhew, his choice to lead Florida’s healthcare agency, served the White House in blocking expansion of the Medicaid program that provides health insurance for the poor. And DeSantis’s key advisor and former state House speaker, Richard Corcoran, is a right-wing ideologue who will become the next commissioner of education.

Continue reading...

Rashida Tlaib: Democrat defends call for Trump’s impeachment – live

Michigan congresswoman stood by impeachment comment as her office says: ‘Tlaib was elected to shake up Washington’

  • Protect the Guardian’s independent reporting with a contribution and help us reach our $1m goal by 7 January

On their first full day in power, House Democrats voted to jump into into a court battle defending the Affordable Care Act as part of their rules package.

From Politico:

From the Associated Press, new poll shows Americans increasingly concerned with immigration:

As much of the U.S. government remains shut down over President Donald Trump’s insistence on funding for his border wall, nearly half of Americans identify immigration as a top issue for the government to work on this year.

Continue reading...

Medicare for All: ‘huge step’ for proposal as Pelosi agrees to hold hearings – live

Michigan Rep. Rashida Tlaib, one of the two first Muslim Congresswomen who will take office today, will take her oath of office on a copy of the Koran owned by Thomas Jefferson, per the Detroit Free Press.

Fun fact: When Rashida Tlaib, a Muslim, is sworn in as the first Palestinian-American woman in Congress today, she will take the oath of office using Thomas Jefferson’s personal copy of the Quran. https://t.co/wZ6I2eKq3v

The new 116th Congress has now officially convened.

Vice President Mike Pence is swearing in members of the Senate. House members are preparing to be sworn in.

Continue reading...

How Republicans are turning US states into labs of anti-democracy

The party’s brazen efforts to rewire state legislature poses a greater threat than Trump – and will be all the harder to tackle

America’s federal system of government is, in theory, key to the strength of its democracy. As opposed to citizens in the more centralized states of Europe, Americans get to vote for a huge array of local offices, policies and ballot initiatives that can influence their lives for the better. Innovation in the states can be healthy for the whole country, such as when healthcare reform in Massachusetts provided inspiration for the Affordable Care Act. The supreme court justice Louis Brandeis famously praised US states as laboratories which could “try novel social and economic experiments without risk to the rest of the country”.

Related: Voter suppression is an all-American problem we can fight – and win | Cas Mudde

Continue reading...