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Shimon Peres, Ex-Israeli President and Nobel Laureate, Dies at 93 After Suffering Stroke

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Shimon Peres, who led Israel as prime minister and president in an enduring six-decade political career built on promoting peace between Arabs and Jews, died Tuesday while being hospitalized from a major stroke, his family announced.

He was 93.

“Today, with deep sorrow, we bid farewell to our beloved father, the ninth president of Israel, Shimon Peres,” Peres’ son, Chemi Peres, said at Sheba Medical Center in Tel Aviv at around 7 a.m. Wednesday local time (midnight ET).

“He was one of the founding fathers of the state of Israel and served our people before we even had a country of our own. He worked tirelessly for Israel, from the very first day of the state to the last day of his life,” Chemi Peres said.

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President Barack Obama awards Shimon Peres the Presidential Medal of Freedom at the White House on June 13, 2012. Susan Walsh / AP, file

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You Won’t Be Able To Get These Slave-Made Items In The U.S. Anymore

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The U.S. has taken a definitive stand against slave labor. President Barack Obama signed a law Wednesday that bars the country from importing a long list of items produced by forced or slave labor.

The “prohibition on the importation of goods made with convict labor, forced labor, or indentured labor” was embedded into a broader trade enforcement bill that Sens. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) presented last year.

A loophole in the Tariff Act of 1930 meant that these goods were still making their way into the country because of “consumptive demand” — when goods are in short supply in the U.S.

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Sandra Day O’Connor Says Obama Should Get To Replace Justice Scalia

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Sandra Day O’Connor, the retired Supreme Court justice appointed by a Republican president, said on Wednesday that President Barack Obama should get to name the replacement for the late Justice Antonin Scalia.

O’Connor, in an interview with a Fox affiliate in Phoenix, disagreed with Republican arguments that the next president, and not Obama, should get to fill the high court vacancy.

“I think we need somebody there to do the job now and let’s get on with it,” said O’Connor, the first woman appointed to the Supreme Court.

O’Connor, 85, agreed it’s unusual for a Supreme Court vacancy to open in an election year, which “creates much talk around the thing that isn’t necessary.”

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!!!!!BN2016-2-18O'CONNOR- LET OBAMA 'GET ON WITH IT'1Image: Breaking News and Opinion on The Huffington Post

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Obama To Nominate Supreme Court Justice When Senate Returns: White House

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President Barack Obama will not rush through a Supreme Court choice to replace Justice Antonin Scalia this week but will wait to nominate a candidate until the U.S. Senate is back in session, the White House said on Sunday.

“Given that the Senate is currently in recess, we don’t expect the president to rush this through this week, but instead will do so in due time once the Senate returns from their recess,” White House spokesman Eric Schultz said.

“At that point, we expect the Senate to consider that nominee, consistent with their responsibilities laid out in the United States Constitution,” he said.

Obama is traveling in California and returns to Washington on Tuesday. The Senate returns from recess on Feb. 22.

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!!!!!ObamaScaliaSpeech1President Barack Obama speaking about Justice Antonin Scalia

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Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia Has Died at Age 79

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Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, the bench’s ideological conservative known for his fiery comments in and out of the courtroom, has died. He was 79.

Scalia was “a brilliant legal mind with a pugnacious style, incisive wit, and colorful opinions,” President Barack Obama said Saturday night. “He will no doubt be remembered as one of the most consequential judges and thinkers to serve on the Supreme Court.”

Scalia was found dead at a Texas ranch on Saturday morning when he did not appear for breakfast, the U.S. Marshals Service in Washington told The Associated Press.

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!!!!!BN2016-2-15Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia1

Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia

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Obama on U.S. Embassy in Cuba: ‘This Is What Change Looks Like’

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President Barack Obama announced Wednesday that the U.S. and Cuba have struck a deal to open embassies in each other’s capitals and re-establish diplomatic relations for the first time in half a century.

“The progress we make today is another demonstration we don’t have to be imprisoned by the past,” Obama said.

Obama emphasized that the U.S. and Cuba have some shared interests, such as strong anti-terrorism policies and disaster response. But he acknowledged that the two nations still have “very serious differences” on issues like free speech.

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!!!!!BN2015-7-2NewEra1U.S., Cuba Will Reopen Embassies in Havana and Washington Within Weeks

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Senate Advances Fast-Track For Obama Trade Deals

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The Senate handed President Barack Obama a major win Thursday, voting to advance his trade agenda by ending debate on a bill that would grant him the power to fast-track massive new pacts through Congress.

A number of senators objected to the process, complaining that they were unable to get votes on amendments they deemed essential to making sure that looming, still-secret deals with 12 Pacific Rim nations and Europe live up to promises of helping U.S. workers.

But 62 of their colleagues disagreed, and voted to halt debate anyway, setting up passage of the fast-track bill by the end of the week.

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!!!!!BN2015-5-21Full-SpeedFastTrack1Image: Breaking News and Opinion on The Huffington Post

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Hillary Clinton Goes Big On Immigration

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Hillary Clinton vowed on Tuesday that she would not only support immigration reform and protect deportation relief policies put forward by President Barack Obama. If elected president next year, she would expand them.

“If Congress continues to refuse to act, as president I would do everything possible under the law to go even further,” the 2016 Democratic candidate said at an event with young undocumented immigrants, held at Las Vegas’ Rancho High School.

Clinton’s remarks, which essentially ran down the wish list of immigration activists, were more detailed than most expected. She argued that she would lean in on immigration, and she used that as an attack on Republican presidential candidates who have backed away from the issue.

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!!!!!BN2015-5-6HillaryGoesGrande1Image: Breaking News and Opinion on The Huffington Post

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Rudy Giuliani Tells His Party To Stop Blocking Loretta Lynch’s Nomination

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Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani (R) said Friday that Loretta Lynch is an “extraordinary” nominee for U.S. attorney general, and called on Senate Republicans to stop holding up her confirmation vote.

In a call with reporters, Giuliani said he is a “very dedicated Republican” and doesn’t always agree with President Barack Obama. But he does think that a president should be able to get his or her appointees confirmed by the Senate.

“The confirmation process has been really tremendously distorted. … It’s become Republicans torture Democrats, Democrats torture Republicans. Who started it, God knows,” he said. “But as a Republican and looking at the Constitution, I find Loretta Lynch not only to be an acceptable appointment, but I find her to be an extraordinary appointment.”

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RUDY GIULIANI

Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani says Senate Republicans need to hold a confirmation vote for Loretta Lynch, President Barack Obama’s nominee for U.S. attorney general. | Rob Kim via Getty Images

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Obamacare Is Turning 5 Years Old, And The Debate Has Barely Changed

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A big f***ing deal happened five years ago Monday.

On March 23, 2010, President Barack Obama signed the Affordable Care Act — a law designed to make health insurance available to all Americans and, over time, to make the health care system more efficient. Vice President Joe Biden’s comment that the law was a “B.F.D.,” which an open microphone at the White House ceremony caught, was mainly a reference to the decades-long quest to establish some kind of universal health care system, bringing to the U.S. the same guarantees of financial security and access to medical care that have long existed in every other developed country.

But Biden’s quip was also a statement about the grueling fight to get a bill through Congress. For more than a year, stretching back to Obama’s very first days in office, Republicans and their allies had attacked the law relentlessly and, at times, hyperbolically. They didn’t just doubt that the law would achieve its goals, they also predicted that it would wreak havoc on the federal budget, the economy and the health care system.

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OBAMA SIGNS AFFORDABLE CARE ACT 2010

President Barack Obama (C) signs the Affordable Health Care for America Act during a ceremony with fellow Democrats in the East Room of the White House March 23, 2010 in Washington, D.C. Five years later, Republicans still want the law repealed. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images) | Win McNamee via Getty Images

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