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August 13, 2021

GOP demands answers from Homeland Security amid escalating border crisis

Hello Americans,

A group of House Republicans wrote a letter to Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas demanding answers about the Biden administration’s handling of the ongoing crisis at the US-Mexico border. The group cited the escalating numbers of migrant encounters at the border, with 188,829 in June and roughly 210,000 in July. Over 830 unaccompanied children were encountered at the border last Thursday alone. “These numbers are appalling and are a direct result of the Biden administration’s weak border policies and your lackluster performance as the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security,” the group of 20 lawmakers wrote. “If no response is received, we intend to introduce a resolution of inquiry under clause 7 of House Rule XIII that will require your department to respond.”

President Biden is deploying troops to help evacuate US embassy staff from Kabul as the Taliban continues to gain ground. Approximately 3,000 troops will be redirected from elsewhere in the Middle East to the Kabul airport within the next day or so. “As we’ve said all along, the increased tempo of the Taliban military engagements and the resulting increase in violence and instability across Afghanistan is of grave concern,” said Ned Price, a State Department spokesman. With this deployment, the number of troops in Afghanistan is nearly back where it was before Biden ordered the withdrawal. “We’re mindful that the security situation continues to deteriorate in Afghanistan. And as I said before, our troops will as always have the right of self defense. But this is a narrowly focused mission to help safeguard an orderly reduction of civilians,” said John Kirby, Pentagon press secretary.

Census Bureau data shows that the US became more diverse over the past decade. According to the Associated Press, “The share of the non-Hispanic white population fell from 63.7% in 2010 to 57.8% in 2020, the lowest on record, driven by falling birthrates among white women compared with Hispanic and Asian women. The number of non-Hispanic white people shrank from 196 million in 2010 to 191 million.” Overall, white people continue to be the most prevalent group, except in California, where Hispanics became the largest group. “The US population is much more multiracial and much more racially and ethnically diverse than what we have measured in the past,” said Nicholas Jones, a Census Bureau official.

New York City mayoral nominee Curtis Silwa demanded that CNN part ways with Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s brother Chris Cuomo, who he referred to as a “wartime consigliere” for advising the governor’s response to his sexual harassment accusers. “We’re here today to mount the steps here at CNN to give a letter to the shot caller, the man who decides what goes on in CNN, the Cuomo News Network, and that’s Jeff Zucker,” Sliwa said. Sliwa went on to use references from “The Godfather” to further demonstrate his point. “I would hope that his brother Chris, who has not only enabled him and knows of his behavioral problems as any brothers would know of another brother, would not act like a Fredo and would stand up to his brother and use his bully pulpit on CNN and condemn his actions now that there is documentary evidence,” Sliwa said.

President Biden requested that Congress act to correct the “outrageously” high price of prescription drugs. Democrats look to include drug-pricing measures in their $3.5 trillion budget package. “Prescription drug prices are outrageously expensive in America,” Biden said. “I look forward to Congress getting this done. This is another area we can come together and make a difference in people’s lives.” The president cited surveys that show one in four Americans struggle to afford their prescription drugs. “These prices have put the squeeze on too many families and stripped them of their dignity,” Biden said.

The Texas Senate passed an election overhaul bill, Senate Bill 1, that would add new restrictions and criminal penalties to the voting process. The measure passed on Thursday in an 18-11 party-line vote following a 15-hour filibuster from Democrat Sen. Carol Alvarado. The bill would need to pass through the state’s House, where dozens of Democratic lawmakers remain out of state to block it from taking effect. Earlier this week, Texas House Speaker Dade Phelan signed 52 civil arrest warrants for the absent Democrats. The move marked an escalation in a conflict between the two parties since 50 Democrats flew out of state to Washington last month.

Stay safe out there,

Fraser Dixon

Sources

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