Pennsylvania Senate Race Remains Unresolved

Pennsylvania Senate Race Remains Unresolved

Pennsylvania’s Republican Senate primary between celebrity surgeon Mehmet Oz and former hedge-fund chief executive officer Dave McCormick remains unresolved the day after voters went to the polls.

As of Wednesday afternoon, Oz leads McCormick by 1,610 votes out of more than 1.3 million votes cast for GOP Senate nominee in total. Oz has 410,822, or 31.29 percent of the vote while McCormick has 409,212 or 31.17 percent. The insurgent candidacy of veteran and political commentator Kathy Barnette gained 323,700 or 24.66 percent while four other candidates split the rest of the vote.

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Connecticut Republican Senators Find Governor’s Oversight of West Haven’s COVID Spending Inadequate

Connecticut Republican Senators Find Governor’s Oversight of West Haven’s COVID Spending Inadequate

Gov. Ned Lamont (D) this week approved the Municipal Accountability Review Board’s (MARB) request to heighten state oversight of the city of West Haven which is alleged to have misspent COVID-19 relief money, but Republican lawmakers are arguing that the move falls short.

The state now deems West Haven a Tier IV municipality, subjecting it to the most rigorous financial scrutiny for which state law provides. This comes as a result of an audit MARB issued last month which detailed numerous fiscal-management problems the city has incurred. Earlier in April, a separate review by the Connecticut Office of Policy and Management found that the city misused nearly four-fifths of over $1 million in funds it received as part of COVID response efforts.

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Biden Reverses Course on Cuba Policy, Florida Officials Condemn

Biden Reverses Course on Cuba Policy, Florida Officials Condemn

President Joe Biden (D) announced this week the United States will be loosening restrictions on Marxist countries, namely Cuba and Venezuela. Travel restrictions will be lightened to Cuba and flights will be authorized to Cuban cities outside of Havana and travel will be permitted for educational purposes.

In reaction, Florida Republicans and Democrats have condemned the actions saying that going soft on the dictatorial regimes will only embolden Castro and Maduro.

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Virginia Congressman Celebrates Pause of Federal Government ‘Disinformation Board’

Virginia Congressman Celebrates Pause of Federal Government ‘Disinformation Board’

A U.S. congressman from Virginia Wednesday celebrated the pause of the creation of a federal government “Disinformation Governance Board,” which was marred by controversy from its inception. 

“Victory for free speech: the Biden Administration is not proceeding with its Ministry of Truth. As a cosponsor of [House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA-23)]’s bill to defund the so-called DHS Disinformation Governance Board, I welcome this news. I will stay vigilant against threats to the First Amendment,” said Rep. Morgan Griffith (R-VA-09).

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Despite Campaign Promise from Whitmer, Michigan Roads Remain in Disrepair

Despite Campaign Promise from Whitmer, Michigan Roads Remain in Disrepair

Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s campaign slogan to “fix the damn roads” gained viral attention for the Michigan Democrat.

However, as she gears up to seek another term, the state is still burdened with infrastructure issues. Residents of the state are required to pay thousands of dollars annually to repair their vehicle due to poor road conditions, according to one study from the nonprofit organization, TRIP.

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Minnesota School Supports Students Who Kneel for National Anthem

Minnesota School Supports Students Who Kneel for National Anthem

A local high school softball team kneeled for the national anthem at a recent game, earning an understanding explanation from their school which said they were protesting for “social justice.”

Alpha News received a video of the Robbinsdale-Cooper girls softball team kneeling as the Star-Spangled Banner was played before a recent game. Only two of the fourteen players pictured remained standing for the national anthem.

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Connecticut Gas Prices Reach Record High

Connecticut Gas Prices Reach Record High

Connecticut gas prices have continued to climb and set a state record on Wednesday, averaging $4.65 per gallon and $6.44 per gallon for diesel.

For comparison, the average price throughout the state was $3.067 per gallon one year ago. Diesel sat at $3.230 per gallon.

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Pennsylvania High School Teacher Charged with Alleged Sexual Relationship with Student

Pennsylvania High School Teacher Charged with Alleged Sexual Relationship with Student

A judge issued a warrant for the arrest Friday of a Pennsylvania high school choral teacher who has been charged with allegedly having a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old female student.

Police in New Wilmington Borough charged Olivia Lois Ortz, 26, of Hermitage, Pennsylvania, with two counts of intercourse/sexual contact with a school student, and one count each of unlawful contact with a minor for sexual offenses and criminal use of a communication facility – all felony-level charges, New Castle News reported Monday.

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Reps. Wittman, Luria Concerned About Biden Administration’s 30-Year Shipbuilding Plan

Reps. Wittman, Luria Concerned About Biden Administration’s 30-Year Shipbuilding Plan

Representatives Rob Wittman (R-VA-01) and Elaine Luria (D-VA-02) are concerned that the Biden administration’s FY 2023 spending plan and an associated 30-year shipbuilding plan will increase risk. In a Wednesday hearing of the Subcommittee on Seapower and Projection Forces, Wittman and Luria questioned officials about the impact of the administration’s budget.

Wittman, the subcommittee’s ranking member, also submitted a scathing written statement to the official record, criticizing the shipbuilding plan, saying he would reject an “anemic shipbuilding request,” that plans to retire vessels, seeks to not maintain the naval aviation plan, would “eviscerate our mine countermeasure warfighting capabilities,” “irreparably harm our nation’s ability to support future forcible entry options” by reducing amphibious forces, and would “waste significant taxpayer’s monies.”

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Youngkin Announces Alternative Hiring Process for People with Disabilities

Youngkin Announces Alternative Hiring Process for People with Disabilities

Governor Glenn Youngkin has announced an alternative hiring process for people with disabilities; Youngkin’s Tuesday announcement said that reflects Virginia’s priorities for its workforce.

“This process is only the beginning of our strategy to demonstrate our commitment to individuals with differing abilities to improve the state workforce,” Secretary of Administration Margaret “Lyn” McDermid said. “It is one facet of a more comprehensive strategy, which includes accommodations, communication, education and awareness, compliance and retention of individuals with differing abilities.”

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More Headlines…

First-Quarter Florida Tourism Continues Record Streak

In the first quarter of 2022, 36 million people visited the Sunshine State, a 39.6% percent increase from the same eriod last year, according to VISIT FLORIDA.

It’s the third consecutive quarter that overall visitation to Florida has surpassed pre-pandemic visitation levels.

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Lawmaker Wants Ohio Voters to Decide Recreational Marijuana Use This Year

One lawmaker is continuing his push to allow Ohio voters to decide in November to legalize the recreational use of marijuana after a lawsuit settlement pushed a potential ballot initiative to 2023.

A citizens group working for a vote this year reached a settlement with state officials recently that will put the measure on the ballot next year. Also, the state agreed to accept more than 140,000 signatures the Coalition to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol has already collected.

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Civil Rights Commissioner Warns Schools Touting Segregated Programs and Graduation Ceremonies They Are in Violation of Civil Rights Act

U.S. Civil Rights Commissioner Peter Kirsanow has warned two schools that have announced programs or graduation exercises that intend to segregate students by race or other identifying feature they are in violation of the Civil Rights Act.

In recent letters to both California Polytechnic State University and Oakton Community College in Illinois, Kirsanow, writing as a single member of the commission, reminds the schools’ officials that they are “subject to Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

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Kentucky, Ohio Officials Start to Identify Contractors for $2 Billion Brent Spence Bridge Project

Transportation officials in Kentucky and Ohio continue to work in concert on a new Ohio River bridge connecting Cincinnati with Northern Kentucky, and they hope construction on the more than $2 billion megaproject could start by the end of next year.

Besides building a companion bridge to the existing Brent Spence Bridge, officials in both states want to widen the interstate highways connected by the bridges. A 5-mile stretch in Kentucky and a 1-mile stretch in Ohio each would get one new lane in each direction across a 6-mile stretch.

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Republican Mastriano to Face Democrat Shapiro for Pennsylvania Governor; Senate Race Too Close to Call

Pennsylvania Republicans on Tuesday gave State Senator Doug Mastriano (R-Gettysburg) the nod to face state Attorney General Josh Shapiro (D) in the race for governor this year.

The Democratic Party also nominated Lt. Gov. John Fetterman (D) for the Senate seat from which Republican Pat Toomey will retire at the end of 2022. At this writing, the GOP primary contest for that seat remains too close to call between top-tier candidates David McCormick and Mehmet Oz. 

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Judge Lifts Stay in Florida Congressional Redistricting Case

Florida Judge Layne Smith lifted a stay on an injunction against his ruling related to Florida’s congressional redistricting case. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) and the State of Florida appealed Smith’s original ruling that said the proposed and passed congressional redistricting maps were unconstitutional.

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Connecticut Governor Signs Climate Change Legislation

Climate mitigation and expanding renewable energy programs are tucked inside two key pieces of climate change legislation that have now been signed, Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont said.

The governor announced early Tuesday afternoon that Senate Bill 10 and Senate Bill 176 which bring together the state’s commitment to decarbonizing the electric grid and widening renewable energy programs in an attempt to halt climate change.

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Michigan Judge’s Abortion Interests Called into Question

Controversy is swirling around Michigan Second District Court of Appeals Chief Judge Elizabeth L. Gleicher issuing a preliminary injunction Tuesday afternoon against the state’s moribund 1931 law criminalizing abortions.

Anti-abortion advocates, including Right to Life Michigan and the Michigan Catholic Conference, assert Gleicher should have recused herself in the case, Planned Parenthood v. Attorney General Dana Nessel, because Gleicher donates regularly to the organization. Additionally, Gleicher offered free legal services to the American Civil Liberties Union and its client Planned Parenthood in a late 1990s abortion case, Mahaffey v. Attorney General.

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Report: Yavapai County Has Unmonitored Ballot Drop Box Despite Arizona Attorney General Brnovich Stating Drop Boxes Violate Felony Law

State Rep. Shawnna Bolick (R-Phoenix) was driving through Skull Valley in Yavapai County, Arizona, two weeks ago when she noticed an unmonitored ballot drop box in the parking lot of the U.S. Postal Service. Unmonitored ballot drop boxes have become a big concern lately due to the new Dinesh D’Souza documentary 2,000 Mules, which traced GPS cell phone locations to show that around 2,000 people may have illegally transferred handfuls of ballots repeatedly from left-leaning nonprofits to these drop boxes in swing states including Arizona.

Bolick tweeted, “Why does the Skull Valley, AZ US Post Office have an unmanned drop box for mail-in ballots in its parking lot when it has a blue mailbox in front of the post office that can already receive mail-in ballots?” She told The Arizona Sun Times she has a call scheduled with the Yavapai County Recorder Leslie Hoffman to discuss them.

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Bar Praised for Trying to Revitalize Dangerous Downtown Minneapolis Reportedly Broken Into

A bar praised for trying to challenge the public’s perception of downtown Minneapolis as dangerous was broken into, early Monday morning.

Ties Lounge & Rooftop is a recent startup that features four floors where people can congregate to drink and enjoy food. “We really want this place to be a place of healing for people, where people can come back and sit back and enjoy themselves and meet new people, network” one of Ties’s five original cofounders said in a March interview with Fox 9. MinnPost has also profiled the establishment, explaining that the founders “were driven to action by the murder of George Floyd,” taking over a space left vacant after the previous tenants were run out of business by “perceptions of crime.”

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Policy Analysts: Claims of Impending Michigan Teacher Shortage Overstated

Amid calls from Gov. Gretchen Whitmer to remedy a perceived teacher shortage in Michigan, some of the leading policy analysts in the state claim the governor’s “one-size-fits-all approach” is based on faulty premises.

Those premises are echoed in a Monday report in the education journal Chalkbeat Detroit.

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Newt Gingrich Urges GA-6 Voters to Support Jake Evans on May 24

Former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Newt Gingrich released a video on Facebook urging the voters of Georgia’s 6th Congressional District to vote for Jake Evans in the Republican primary that is scheduled for May 24.

“I’m Newt Gingrich. I was Speaker of the House and we developed the Contract with America to get America back on track with solid, conservative ideas – balancing the budget, reforming welfare, cutting taxes – and I wanted to take a minute or two just to share with you about a good friend of mine who’s running for Congress,” he said.

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