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News Recap: Week Ending January 27, 2024

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We realize everyone is busy, here's a news recap for what you might have missed this past week.

Ohio News Recap

Ohio's Transgender Community Faces Crisis After Healthcare Bill Override

Following the Ohio Republicans' override of Governor Mike DeWine's veto, over 100 families with transgender members are planning to leave the state. This action comes in response to the passage of House Bill 68, which bans gender-affirming care for trans and nonbinary youth and restricts trans athletes in women's sports. The law, igniting widespread concern among the transgender community and their families, has led to urgent relocation considerations. Cities like Cleveland and Akron, under liberal leadership, have criticized the bill, advocating for healthcare decisions to remain in the hands of parents and doctors. The ACLU is exploring potential legal challenges against the bill's implications.

Read more from News 5 Cleveland

Ohio Senate Overrides Veto on Flavored Tobacco Ban Prohibition

The Ohio Senate, following the House's lead, has overridden Governor Mike DeWine's veto on a bill preventing cities from enacting flavored tobacco bans. Set to become law in 90 days, this decision halts local initiatives like Columbus's aimed at reducing teen smoking and vaping. The bill, supported by the majority of Senate Republicans, asserts tobacco regulation as a statewide concern and aims to protect small businesses. However, anti-tobacco groups and health organizations argue that these bans are crucial in combating teen vaping and addressing targeted tobacco marketing, particularly in Black communities. Concerns have also been raised about the bill's broad language potentially undermining local smoking bans for individuals under 21. Despite these objections, the legislature maintains the option to clarify the law in the future. Governor DeWine, a critic of the bill, describes it as a victory for Big Tobacco and detrimental to children's health.

You can read more from The Columbus Dispatch

Ohio AG Blocks Proposed Voting Rights Amendment Again

Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost's repeated rejection of a proposed amendment to expand voting access, despite previous approvals of similar initiatives, raises concerns of inconsistent legal standards. The initiative, backed by liberal groups and Black leaders, aims to enhance voter registration and access but was turned down due to its title, "The Ohio Voter Bill of Rights." Yost's decision, influenced by a recent Ohio Supreme Court ruling, contrasts with earlier approvals of similarly titled proposals, suggesting a moving target in legal evaluations. This inconsistency hints at selective criteria application, potentially undermining the democratic process and civic participation in Ohio. The groups behind the amendment plan to revise and resubmit, but the issue highlights a troubling aspect of rule application and transparency in legal processes. Read more from Dayton Daily News

National Recap

Supreme Court Overrules Texas in Border Security Dispute

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled in a 5-4 decision to allow Border Patrol agents to remove razor wire installed by Texas at the U.S.-Mexico border, marking a significant victory for President Biden's administration in its border policy dispute with Governor Greg Abbott. This ruling addresses the conflict that escalated following migrant safety concerns at restricted border areas. The decision highlights the federal government's authority in immigration law and border security, overriding the earlier federal appeals court order that had halted the wire's removal. While the White House has welcomed the ruling, emphasizing effective border management, Texas officials maintain that such security measures are crucial to prevent illegal crossings. This case underscores the ongoing tensions between state and federal jurisdiction in border security operations.

Read more from CNN

Escalating Border Dispute: Calls for Biden to Federalize Texas National Guard

Amidst a surge in tensions over border policy, President Joe Biden faces increasing calls to federalize the Texas National Guard following Governor Greg Abbott's accusatory letter about federal immigration policies. The Supreme Court recently allowed federal agents to remove border razor wire installed by Abbott, intensifying the conflict. Texas Democrats, like Representatives Greg Casar and Joaquin Castro, support federal intervention, citing Abbott's actions as unconstitutional and harmful. They argue that federalizing the National Guard, a move that would shift its control from the state to the federal government, is necessary to uphold federal supremacy in immigration matters. This situation echoes historical instances where federal authority overruled state actions in constitutional conflicts, highlighting the growing rift between Texas and federal authorities over border management.

Read more from Newsweek

Jury Orders Trump to Pay $83.3 Million to E. Jean Carroll for Defamation

Donald Trump, the former President of the United States, has been ordered by a Manhattan federal jury to pay a total of $83.3 million in damages to writer E. Jean Carroll for defamation. This verdict includes $65 million in punitive damages and $18.3 million in compensatory damages. This trial, Carroll’s second against Trump, focused solely on the damages for defamatory statements, following a previous jury’s decision last year that found Trump civilly liable for sexually assaulting Carroll and defaming her, awarding $5 million in damages then.

Trump, who did not attend the first trial but was present for this one, is currently in the midst of his campaign for the Republican presidential nomination. This legal outcome comes amidst his likelihood of securing the nomination, despite the liability finding for sexual assault and his involvement in several ongoing criminal cases. This significant financial judgment reflects the jury's stance on the severity of the defamatory statements made by Trump against Carroll.

Read more from MSNBC

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