10-20-2019  9:17 am   •   PDX Weather    •   SEA weather  
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Washington State to Vote on Affirmative Action Referendum

More than two decades after voters banned affirmative action, the question of whether one's minority status should be considered in state employment, contracting, colleges admissions is back on the ballot

Merkley Introduces Legislation that Protects Access to Health Care for Those Who Cannot Afford Bail

Under current law, individuals in custody who have not been convicted of a crime are denied Medicare, Medicaid, and veterans’ benefits

New County Hire Aims to Build Trust, Transparency Between Community and Public Safety Officials

Leneice Rice will serve as a liaison focused on documenting and reporting feedback from a community whose faith in law enforcement has been tested

Hank Willis Thomas Exhibit Opens at Portland Art Museum

One of the most important conceptual artists of our time, his works examine the representation of race and the politics of visual culture

NEWS BRIEFS

GFO Offers African Americans Help in Solving Family Mysteries

The Genealogical Forum of Oregon is holding an African American Special Interest Group Saturday, Oct. 19 ...

Third Annual NAMC-WA Gala Features Leader on Minority Business Development

The topic of the Washington Chapter of the National Association of Minority Contractors' event was 'Community and Collaboration' ...

Building Bridges Event Aims to Strengthen Trust Between Communities

The 4th Annual Building Bridges of Understanding in Our Communities: Confronting Hate will be held in Tigard on...

The Black Man Project Kicks Off National Tour in Seattle

The first in a series of interactive conversations focused on Black men and vulnerability takes place in Seattle on October 25 ...

Protesters Rally in Ashland to Demand 'Impeach Trump Now'

Activists are rallying in Ashland Sunday Oct, 13 to demand impeachment proceedings ...

Seattle's first Opportunity Zone development breaks ground

SEATTLE (AP) — The Opportunity Zones program was marketed as a way to help poor communities by offering major capital-gains tax breaks for investors to park their cash in 8,000 designated low-income census tracts.Instead, critics have labelled it a "tax scam," ''the latest example of urban...

Prosecutors: Trade war opens doors For Mexican drug cartels

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Federal law enforcement officials in Oregon say they've uncovered an elaborate scheme to convert Mexican drug profits from sales in the United States back into pesos using Chinese citizens who seek to circumvent their country's banking laws.The Mexican drug cartels are...

Vaughn scores twice, Vandy upsets No. 22 Missouri 21-14

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Derek Mason wants it known he's the best coach for the Vanderbilt Commodores.Riley Neal came off the bench and threw a 21-yard touchdown to Cam Johnson with 8:57 left, and Vanderbilt upset No. 22 Missouri 21-14 on Saturday with a stifling defensive...

No. 22 Missouri heads to Vandy, 1st road trip since opener

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Missouri coach Barry Odom knows only too well the dangers of going on the road and how a few mistakes can prove very costly.While some of his players my not remember that stunning loss at Wyoming to open this season, Odom hasn't forgotten."We're going to treat it just...

OPINION

Atatiana Jefferson, Killed by Police Officer in Her Own Home

Atatiana Jefferson, a biology graduate who worked in the pharmaceutical industry and was contemplating becoming a doctor, lived a life of purpose that mattered ...

“Hell No!” That Is My Message to Those Who Would Divide Us 

Upon release from the South African jail, Nelson Mandela told UAW Local 600 members “It is you who have made the United States of America a superpower, a leader of the world" ...

Rep. Janelle Bynum Issues Response to the Latest Statement from Clackamas Town Center

State legislator questions official response after daughter questioned for ‘loitering’ in parking lot ...

Why Would HUD Gut Its Own Disparate Impact Rule?

"You can’t expand housing rights by limiting civil protections. The ’D’ in HUD doesn’t stand for ‘Discrimination’" ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

New Emmett Till marker dedicated to replace vandalized sign

GLENDORA, Miss. (AP) — A new bulletproof memorial to Emmett Till was dedicated Saturday in Mississippi after previous historical markers were repeatedly vandalized.The brutal slaying of the 14-year-old black teenager helped spur the civil rights movement more than 60 years ago.The...

Parents sue Virginia school district over racist 2017 video

HENRICO, Va. (AP) — The parents of a Virginia student who say their son was assaulted and bullied by his middle school football teammates in an incident captured on video two years ago are suing the school system.The video, which showed football players simulating sex acts on black students...

Team abandons FA Cup qualifier after racial abuse

LONDON (AP) — An FA Cup qualifier between Haringey Borough and Yeovil was abandoned Saturday when the home team walked off the field after one of its players was racially abused.Haringey, a London-based non-league club, walked off in the 64th minute after claims its Cameroonian goalkeeper...

ENTERTAINMENT

Jane Fonda returns to civil disobedience for climate change

WASHINGTON (AP) — Inspired by the climate activism of a Swedish teenager, Jane Fonda says she's returning to civil disobedience nearly a half-century after she was last arrested at a protest.Fonda, known for her opposition to the Vietnam War, was one of 17 climate protesters arrested Friday...

Naomi Wolf and publisher part ways amid delay of new book

NEW YORK (AP) — Naomi Wolf and her U.S. publisher have split up amid a dispute over her latest book, "Outrages."Wolf and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt announced separately Friday that they had "mutually and amicably agreed to part company" and that Houghton would not be releasing "Outrages."...

New HBO series 'Watchmen' hopes to match original's ambition

NEW YORK (AP) — Damon Lindelof didn't take lightly the challenge of adapting the most acclaimed graphic novel of all time.The "Lost" and "The Leftovers" co-creator was a fan of the revered "Watchmen" book ever since his father handed him the first few issues when he was 13 in the mid-1980s....

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Where you die can affect your chance of being an organ donor

WASHINGTON (AP) — If Roland Henry had died in a different part of the country, his organs might have been...

Kurds begin evacuation from besieged Syrian border town

AKCAKALE, Turkey (AP) — Kurdish fighters and civilians began evacuating from a besieged Syrian town on...

Detroit-area men who sent millions to Yemen spared prison

DETROIT (AP) — A group of Detroit-area men opened bank accounts to move millions of dollars to Yemen, their...

Canada's Conservatives offer bland option to Trudeau's flash

TORONTO (AP) — Even members of his own party say Canada's Conservative leader is bland.They tout it as a...

15 dead after Russian dam collapse floods dormitories

MOSCOW (AP) — At least 15 people are dead after a dam at a small Siberian gold mine collapsed and water...

Trump drops plan to host G-7 at Doral

WASHINGTON (AP) — Responding to stinging criticism, President Donald Trump on Saturday abruptly reversed...

McMenamins
Halimah Abdullah CNN

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The Republican Party's message makeover may soon face a critical test as it considers the Violence Against Women Act, legislation that draws into sharp contrast the differences between the two parties on women's issues.

The Senate passed the measure on Wednesday, 78-22, and sent it to the House of Representatives, where proponents expect a fight that would test Republican efforts to embrace inclusiveness.

The Senate bill includes services, such as legal aid and shelter stays to domestic violence victims without regard to their immigration status or sexual orientation.

"Today, the Senate passed a strong bipartisan bill to reauthorize and strengthen the Violence Against Women Act. This important step shows what we can do when we come together across party lines to take up a just cause," President Barack Obama said in a statement.

"The bill passed by the Senate will help reduce homicides that occur from domestic violence, improve the criminal justice response to rape and sexual assault, address the high rates of dating violence experienced by young women, and provide justice to the most vulnerable among us," he said.

Obama signaled that the House should move quickly.

With the Senate passage, the pending House debate also opens the door to the types of thorny battles that stymied the bill last year and may have helped cost Republicans support among many women voters in the presidential race.

Those fights included issues like barring agencies that receive funding under the law from discriminating against gays and lesbians, allowing immigrants who face domestic violence to seek legal status, and giving tribal authorities new power to prosecute cases on Indian reservations.

Republican strategists are keenly aware that the party must broaden its appeal to women and Latinos.

Political experts said that action on the bill could help with that effort, if handled carefully. Though, the issue remains a challenge for some.

"All of the Republican women in the Senate are co-sponsoring the Senate bill. However, in the House, the women are more conservative and have been on board with the House position in opposition to this and in opposition to including protections for homosexuals," said Michele Swers, a Georgetown University American government professor.

Swers said the measure will especially test House Majority Leader Eric Cantor's "new more compassionate GOP message."

The Violence Against Women Act mostly provides support for organizations that serve domestic violence victims. Criminal prosecutions of abusers are generally the responsibility of local authorities, but the act stiffened sentences for stalking under federal law.

Supporters credit the Clinton-era act, which expired in 2011, with sharply reducing the number of lives lost to domestic violence.

Last year, the Senate passed a similar bill by a slightly less convincing margin, while the House approved its version on a mostly party line vote. But Congress failed to reach a compromise.

The Senate measure had more Republican support this time, meaning that it might get through both chambers this session, political experts said.

"This is not and never should be a partisan political issue," Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine said on the Senate floor last week.

But Florida Republican Marco Rubio, a potential 2016 presidential candidate, was one of a handful of senators who voted against bringing the measure to the floor. He has cited funding concerns.

Conservative groups are also closely watching how Republican lawmakers navigate the debate.

"In its current form, (the bill's) narrow focus ignores many of the proven causes of violence, is subject to waste, fraud, and abuse, and -- in some cases -- is harmful to the very victims it was intended to help," Christina Villegas, a visiting fellow at the conservative Independent Women's Forum wrote for the group.

Villegas said Congress should instead fight for "more accountable and effective programs" and should change the law to "serve all victims of abuse," regardless of gender or sexual-orientation.

Well-heeled conservative activist groups, FreedomWorks and Heritage Action, have voiced similar opposition. Heritage Action considers the bill a "key vote" when issuing its conservative scorecard.

The payoff could be big for Republicans, political experts say.

"It can drag them back into the debate but it is also an easy opportunity and a way for them to symbolically show that they're trying to be more inclusive," Jennifer Lawless, director of the Women and Politics Institute at American University said of the Violence Against Women Act votes.

CNN's Kate Bolduan, Dan Merica and Matt Smith contributed to this report.

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