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23 Oct, 2016

Parliament bans alcohol

The Iraqi parliament issues a ban on the sale of alcohol, which many deem unconstitutional. Opponents argue that the vote infringes constitutional guarantees of freedom of religious belief for minority groups such as Christians. They say they will appeal against the surprise decision in the courts. An official said that the ban was a last-minute move by conservatives.

26 Jan, 2016

House approves tax exemption

The ways and means committee of Philippine Congress approves House Bill 6367, which seeks to exempt Wurtzbach from payment of taxes arising from her winnings from the international pageant. The Bill filed by the Cagayan de Oro representative is approved unanimously. During the hearing, Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) lawyer says there will be no double taxation on Wurtzbach’s earnings from the pageant as long as she submits the necessary documents.

The US may have already taxed Wurtzbach on the prizes she received there. If she wants the tax she paid there credited in the Philippines, she has to submit the documents as proof of the same.

19 Jan, 2016

Norway deports migrants

Norway deports 60 migrants to Russia under new rules that allow them to deport any migrant originating in a country deemed to be “safe.” The new rules are expected to see 5,500 people deported to Russia. Many of the migrants are fleeing the war in Syria, but they crossed into Norway through Russia via the Arctic Circle. Human rights groups say that Russia should not be considered a safe place for refugees and condemned the move.

11 Jan, 2016

Increases education budget

Gov. Brown will increase California spending on schools by $1.4 billion in the coming fiscal year. The increase still leaves California in the bottom ten states in terms of spending per student. Assemblywoman Weber (D-San Diego):

We have to be aware of the fact that even though we have increased our funding in education, we’re still number 40-something in the nation, so we’re still far, far behind in terms of adequately funding our schools in comparison to other states.

9 Nov, 2015

France: gay men can donate blood

By Spring of 2016, gay men in France will be allowed to donate blood, ending a 33 year ban that was put in place in1983. Under new rules, men who haven’t had sex in four months before donating, or have only had one partner will be allowed to donate. If this restriction shows no risk within the year, they will be able to donate blood regularly like the general population. French health minister:

Giving blood is an act of generosity, of citizenship, which cannot be conditioned to sexual orientation. While respecting complete patient safety, today we are ending a taboo and discrimination

30 Sep, 2015

Rio mayor bans Uber

Rio de Janeiro’s Mayor Paes signs a bill banning Uber. Uber has over 5,000 drivers and 500,000 users since launching in Brazil a year ago, and aggression by politicians and taxi drivers has been mounting. To celebrate the signing, Paes drives around in a taxi picking up random passengers. Paes:

I can’t drive Uber, it’s illegal.


To please taxi owners, Mayor Paes sanctioned a completely unconstitutional law that is trying to ban technology from the city, leaving cariocas with less options to get around. We are now looking at appropriate legal measures. Uber believes that the service our partner drivers provides is completely legal and supported by federal law.

1 Aug, 2015

Zimbabwe bans hunting

Following the outrage over the killing of Cecil the Lion by Palmer, Zimbabwe bans the hunting of lions, leopards and elephants in the area frequently used by hunters. Bow and arrow hunts are also suspended unless hunters are approved by the National Parks and Wildlife Authority. The Safari Operators Association of Zimbabwe stands to lose business $40 million a year from a ban.

20 Jul, 2015

Signs 20-week abortion bill

Walker signs bill into law that bans abortion beyond 20 weeks of pregnancy. The law applies to non-emergency abortions only. No exceptions apply for those pregnancies that result from incest or rape. Abortions may be performed beyond the 20 week period if the mother is likely to die or suffer irreversible injury within 24 hours. A violation of the law constitutes a felony and may result in a fine up to $10,000 and 3 1/2 years in prison. Civil suits and penalties are also possible.

For people, regardless of where they might stand, when an unborn child can feel pain I think most people feel it’s appropriate to protect that child.

17 Jul, 2015

Marijuana bill approved

Governor Ige signs a bill to allow up to eight medical marijuana dispensary licenses within the state, including two in Maui County. These dispensary are expected to serve up to 13,000 qualified patients who hold medical marijuana card. Ige:

I support the establishment of dispensaries to ensure that qualified patients can legally and safely access medical marijuana. We will make a good faith effort to create a fair process that will help the people most in need.

13 Jul, 2015

Bans burqa

Chadian police says anyone caught wearing a full-face veil will be arrested. Police:

This attack just confirms that a ban on the full-face veil was justified, adding that, it now must be respected more than ever by the entire population. Anyone who does not obey the law will be automatically arrested and brought to justice,

30 Jun, 2015

Adopts strict vaccine law

Brown signs a California bill to strike California’s personal belief exemption for immunizations, a move that requires nearly all public schoolchildren to be vaccinated. The bill takes effect next year.

The science is clear that vaccines dramatically protect children against a number of infectious and dangerous diseases. While it’s true that no medical intervention is without risk, the evidence shows that immunization powerfully benefits and protects the community.

California joins Mississippi and West Virginia as the only states with such strict requirements. Medical exemptions can be granted to children with serious health issues. Children whose parents refuse vaccination can try to obtain a medical exemption or be homeschooled. The measure applies to public and private schools, as well as day care facilities.

26 Jun, 2015

Jail for avoiding quarantine

South Korea passes a law that imprisons people for up to two years if they defy quarantine orders when suspected of having an infectious disease. Police officers, firefighters, and other public workers will also help health investigators enforce the quarantine law. This is in response to the 181 confirmed cases and 31 deaths resulting from an infection by a 68-year-old man from the Middle East who withheld information from doctors in his itinerary. The quarantine law also publicizes information about a disease outbreak in response to criticism that South Korea delayed reporting of hospitals affected by MERS.

20 May, 2015

Signs cybersecurity order

Christie signs an executive order he says will help protect New Jersey residents from cybersecurity attacks.

Cybersecurity is not just a national issue. Attacks consider to rise here and around our nation. As governor, it’s my job to ensure that 21st century threats … are met with 21st century solutions.

13 May, 2015

Laramie approves anti-discrimination law

The Laramie City Council approves a local anti-discrimination ordinance in the college town where Shepard’s death triggered nationwide sympathy and brought a re-examination of attitudes toward gays 17 years ago. The council votes 7-2 in favor of the measure that prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity in housing, employment and access to public facilities such as restaurants. Local organizers focused their efforts on Laramie after the Legislature repeatedly rejected anti-discrimination bills, most recently early this year. Shepard’s mother:

I’m thrilled that Laramie’s doing it, at the same time sort of saddened that the state of Wyoming can’t see fit to do that as well.Maybe the rest of Wyoming will understand this is about fellow human beings and not something that’s other than what they are…But I feel like if Wyoming had done more to open the door to acceptance, that kind of reputation would have disappeared very quickly. Instead of taking advantage of the moment, they just sort of turned around and ran.

5 Jan, 2015

Restricts Syrian visas

Lebanon begin imposing entry restrictions on Syrians as the country struggles to cope with more than a million refugees fleeing the civil war next door.  The government estimates there are about 1.5 million Syrians in Lebanon, about a quarter of the total population. Some 1.1 million are registered with the UN refugee agency. Lebanese officials say they simply cannot absorb any more. The policy requires Syrians to obtain visas that limit the time they can remain in Lebanon. Interior minister:

We have enough. There’s no capacity any more to host more displaced

Lebanese security officials say many Syrians are turned back at border crossings but they have no exact figures. The flow of Syrians through one popular crossing appears lower than normal. There are no plans to forcibly repatriate Syrians already in Lebanon.

4 Nov, 2014

Oregon, Alaska and Washington, D.C. legalize marijuana

Voters in Oregon, Alaska and Washington, D.C. approve marijuana legalization. In Oregon, the law legalizes personal possession, manufacture and sale of marijuana for people 21 years of age and older, as well as create a commercial regulatory system for the production, distribution and sale of marijuana. Alaska’s law taxes and regulates the production, sale and use of marijuana, making the use legal for people over 21 years old. Washington, D.C.’s proposal allows for a person over 21 years old to possess up to two ounces of marijuana for personal use and grow up to six cannabis plants in their home. It also allows people to transfer up to one ounce of marijuana to another person, but not sell it. Drug Policy Alliance:

The pace of reform is accelerating, other states are sure to follow, and even Congress is poised to wake from its slumber.

30 May, 2014

Minnesota legalizes

Governor Dayton signs legislation that makes Minnesota the 22nd state to legalize medicinal marijuana. Minnesotans who are sick or in serious pain may use marijuana, although they may not smoke it. More specifically, they will still not be allowed to access cannabis in leaf form. The drug will be available by mid-2015 in pill and vapor form, as well as in oil form (which has proven especially successful in treating children with seizures). However, pot advocates say that the best and most beneficial way to consume the drug is in its natural form. Patients worry that by signing up for the medical marijuana program, they could be putting themselves at risk of falling into the grasp of police.

5 Apr, 2012

Repeals Equal Pay Enforcement Act

Walker signs a bill repealing the 2009 Equal Pay Enforcement Act which allowed workers to sue employers for wage discrimination in the cheaper and more accessible state courts rather than in federal court. Senator Grothman argues the act was hurting businesses who had to defend themselves from false accusations of discrimination:

It’s an underreported problem, but a huge number of discrimination claims are baseless. Most of them are filed by fired employees, and really today almost anybody is a protected class. As a result many companies are forced to pay fired employees to go away [and it has] raised the cost of doing business in the state to intolerable levels.

Senator Sinicki, who co-authored the act, opposes its repeal:

This whole session has been anti-woman and anti-middle class, and this fits right in with that agenda.

8 Jul, 2011

Signs concealed-carry bill

Walker signs a bill allowing citizens to carry concealed weapons after going through training, passing a background check and obtaining a permit. The bill also bans guns from certain locations and allows private businesses to ban guns on their premises.

By signing concealed carry into law today we are making Wisconsin safer for all responsible, law abiding citizens.

26 Jun, 2011

Signs budget

Walker signs a two-year $66 billion budget that cuts almost $800 million from public schools, expands taxpayer support for private voucher schools, cuts taxes for businesses, and keeps property taxes the same, helping to eliminate a $3 billion deficit without raising taxes. It is estimated the state’s main account will have a $300 million surplus by June 2013. Walker uses his power to veto fifty items in the budget.

Our balanced budget makes tough choices while also providing a path to prosperity for our state and our people. Through honest budgeting, we are providing an alternative to the reckless tricks and gimmicks of the past. To move forward together, we are acknowledging that we have to make sacrifices to protect the next generation by decreasing the serious debt that they would otherwise inherit.

Assembly Minority Leader Barca criticizes Walker’s budget and vetoes as helping businesses but hurting the poor and middle class.

His vetoes don’t change the fact that his budget serves corporate special interests at the expense of Wisconsin’s small businesses and middle class. Time and again, Gov. Walker has gone out of his way to limit public scrutiny of his extreme agenda and it comes as no surprise that the governor used many of his vetoes to take away public accountability and further consolidate power in his administration.

25 May, 2011

Signs voter photo ID law

Walker signs a bill requiring voters to show a photo ID at the polls.

To me, something as important as a vote is important whether it’s one case, one hundred cases or one hundred thousand cases. Making sure we have legislation that protects the integrity for an open, fair and honest election in every single case is important.

5 May, 2011

Voids paid sick leave ordinance

Walker signs a bill voiding Milwaukee’s paid sick leave ordinance which was passed by a popular referendum. The ordinance required large businesses to provide nine days and small businesses five days of paid sick leave per year. The ordinance has been challenged in the courts and has never gone into effect.

This law removes another barrier in the road to creating 250,000 private sector jobs by 2015. Patchwork government mandates stifle job creation and economic opportunity. This law gives employers the flexibility they need to put people back to work and that makes Wisconsin a more attractive place to do business.

20 Apr, 2011

Lifts state of emergency

Syria’s government passes a law to lift the country’s state of emergency as protests against the rule of Assad continue. The state security court is abolished while a law allowing peaceful protests is approved. The repeal of the emergency law is a key demand of protesters.

[The people should] refrain from taking part in all marches, demonstrations or sit-ins under any banner whatsoever. [If demonstrations are held] the laws in force in Syria will be applied in the interest of the safety of the people and the stability of the country.

11 Mar, 2011

Signs bill

Walker signs a bill to take away most of the union’s collective bargaining rights. The State Assembly stripped the budget repair bill of its spending language so they were not required to have a quorum of members present since the Democratic senators still refuse to return to the Senate.

What we’re doing here, I think, is progressive. It’s innovative. It’s reform that leads the country, and we’re showing there’s a better way by sharing in that sacrifice with all of us in government.

Democrats and union leaders continue to oppose the Republican bill. Senate minority leader Miller:

Republicans may have achieved a short-term policy goal, but their radical agenda, the war on working families, has been exposed, and the people of Wisconsin and across the country are united against it as never before.

17 May, 2004

Massachusetts marries gay couples

1179337063_9680More than 1,000 gay and lesbian couples stream into Boston and town halls across Massachusetts seeking licenses to marry after the state legalizes same-sex marriage.  The woman who is first in line to apply for her marriage license camped out in front of Cambridge City Hall with her bride-to-be says:

To have the highest court in the state affirm your right to be a family was wonderful, and it just gave you courage.

20 Feb, 2003

Funding approved


After a hard political battle, President Bush signs an omnibus bill which includes $110 million in initial funding for NASA’s New Horizons mission to Pluto and the Kuiper Belt System. The funding allows the team to proceed with the final design of the probe.

It’s like the old days. We are going to the frontier. We’re going back to the roots of the space program.

28 Jul, 1868


The United States ratifies the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The amendment grants citizenship to “all persons born or naturalized in the United States” which includes former slaves who had just been freed after the Civil War. Known as the “Reconstruction Amendment,” it forbids any state to deny any person “life, liberty or property, without due process of law” or to “deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”