#BlackExcellence: Ten Black College Students Named 2018 Truman Scholars

The Truman Scholarship-which was created by the Harry S. Truman Scholarship Foundation-honors college students who are very involved in civic engagement and display academic excellence, the news outlet writes. Students who are selected receive up to $30,000 to pursue their graduate degrees, priority admission to the school of their choice, internships within the federal government, and ongoing mentorship and training.

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Sard Verbinnen & Co Launches Public Affairs Practice Focused on Supporting Clients in M&A, Crisis and Other High-Stakes Situations

NEW YORK & WASHINGTON– –May 30, 2018–Sard Verbinnen & Co announced today the launch of SVC Public Affairs to support clients’ needs for fully integrated public affairs counsel on transformative high-stakes situations that affect reputation and value, including M&A , crises, government oversight and investigations, issues management, and policy positioning. Ambassador and former Deputy U.S. Trade Representative Miriam Sapiro and Purple Strategies Co-Founder Bruce Haynes, who bring deep experience counseling management teams and Boards of Directors on high priority public affairs issues, have been named Managing Directors of SVC as well as Vice Chairs of the SVC Public Affairs practice.

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MS-Sen.: GOP challenger calls for closing of all VA hospitals

A Republican candidate for one of Mississippi’s U.S. Senate seats called for all Veterans Affairs hospitals to be closed down, citing a poor quality of service and the chance to benefit private hospitals, WLOX-TV reported.

“The VA is not motivated for customer service like a private hospital,” Republican Senate candidate Richard Boyanton said. “Eliminating the VA would make private hospitals more viable.”

What’s the story?

Boyanton is also a veteran, having served in the Vietnam War, where he earned a Purple Heart.

He believes veterans can get better care at private hospitals than they can at VA hospitals, which he said don’t have a customer service focus and often have long waiting lists for treatments.

The candidate also believes the government could save significant amounts of money by closing VA hospitals. If elected, Boyanton said the issue would be a priority for him.

Who is Richard Boyanton?

Boyanton is a 68-year-old businessman who owns Scott Fence Company and Boyanton Industries.

He joined the Army at age 17, and served as a paratrooper in the 82nd Airborne Division and in Vietnam with the 101st Airborne.

According to his website, he decided to run for Senate because American values are under attack, and he got tired of “watching congressmen sit on their hands and do nothing about this, or even worse fan the flames for their own personal benefit.”

“I decided to run for Senate in order to bring power back into the hands of ordinary citizens that love their country and are concerned about its future,” he wrote.

His platform includes:

  • Supporting freedom of religion
  • Preventing infringement upon the U.S. Constitution
  • Deportation of illegal immigrants and accountability for those who employ or support them
  • Free market economy
  • Civil rights
  • 12-year term limits in Congress

When is the Republican primary?

Boyanton is running against Republican incumbent Sen. Roger Wicker. The primary election is June 5.

There will also be a nonpartisan special election in November to fill the seat vacated by former Republican Sen. Thad Cochran, who resigned in April due to health issues.

Republican Cindy Hyde-Smith is currently filling that seat, and is running in the special election against Republican state Sen. Chris McDaniel, Democrat Mike Espy (former U.S. Secretary of Agriculture), and Democrat Toby Bartee.

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Storm damage a top priority of new

One of his top priorities will be to help guide the park through its recovery from two winter storms that devastated parts of the park in March. “Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area has an outstanding partnership program and is connected to so many different communities,” said Ross.

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PASPA part two? Hatch pushes for federal control over sports gambling after SCOTUS loss

Yesterday, the Supreme Court struck down the law Congress passed 26 years ago that forbade 49 state legislatures from allowing sports gambling. That doesn’t make the issue dead in the water, at least not for one of the original authors of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA). Sen. Orrin Hatch plans to use his last year in office creating new legislation that will allow Congress to impose federal regulation of any interstate sports gambling, especially in the online arena, so to speak:

“The problems posed by sports betting are much the same as they were 25 years ago,”Hatch said. “But the rapid rise of the Internet means that sports betting across state lines is now just a click away. We cannot allow this practice to proliferate amid uneven enforcement and a patchwork race to the regulatory bottom. At stake here is the very integrity of sports. That’s why I plan to introduce legislation in the coming weeks to help protect honesty and principle in the athletic arena. I invite stakeholders and my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to join me in addressing this important issue.”

Note that this is quite a bit different than PASPA. The law overturned by the Supreme Court in Murphy v NCAA flat-out prohibited states other than Nevada from legalizing sports gambling — but didn’t ban it, either. That ran afoul of the anti-commandeering principle embodied in the Tenth Amendment, Justice Samuel Alito ruled in his majority opinion. If the federal government wants to ban sports gambling or regulate it directly, Alito suggested, it has the authority to do so, but not to tell state legislatures that it must act in a certain manner absent that federal action.

Can Hatch make the sale on federal control over sports gambling? He will have some powerful allies on his side:

The National Basketball Association and National Football League called for a federal framework that would apply to all states moving forward with sports gambling legislation.

“We remain in favor of a federal framework that would provide a uniform approach to sports gambling in states that choose to permit it, but we will remain active in ongoing discussions with state legislatures,” NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said in a statement. “Regardless of the particulars of any future sports betting law, the integrity of our game remains our highest priority.”

The NFL said in a statement that it would ask Congress to “enact a core regulatory framework for legalized sports betting.”

Major League Baseball said it would “continue to support legislation that creates air-tight coordination and partnerships between the state, the casino operators and the governing bodies in sports toward that goal.”

The question ahead for members of Congress, and especially for Republicans and conservatives, will be just how much federal control they’re willing to impose. The party and the movement has changed since 1992, I write in my column at The Week, growing more libertarian. There may not be as much appetite for expanding federal control over sporting issues as there was 26 years ago:

In one sense, this ruling should please conservatives. The Supreme Court has not often gone out of its way to strengthen the Tenth Amendment, a key constitutional touchstone for small-government activistsMurphy v. NCAA had already been cited as a potential game-changer for limiting Washington’s power — an antidote to previous expansive precedent on the Commerce Clause, starting with Wickard v. Filburn.

Justice Samuel Alito didn’t upend Wickard or limit the Commerce Clause in his governing opinion. However, he did set a hard limit on Congress’ ability to dictate what state legislatures can and cannot do without enacting a full federal prohibition on an activity, which PASPA avoided. The Constitution allots limited authority to Congress, Alito wrote, but “all other legislative power is reserved for the states, as the Tenth Amendment confirms.” Alito added: “And conspicuously absent from the list of powers given to Congress is the power to issue direct orders to the governments of the states.” …

When he co-wrote PASPA in 1992, Hatch was one of the stronger conservative voices in the upper chamber. At that time, the three-legged stool of the right still prevailed: social conservatism, fiscal discipline, and a strong military. Hatch’s PASPA fell clearly into the first leg, a moral stricture against vice that has the potential to corrupt not just governments but souls.

The world has changed since those days, and so has conservatism. While abortion still occupies its own place in the conservative agenda, the prominence of other social issues has fallen in favor of a more libertarian approach. Younger voters see issues like gambling and recreational use of marijuana as personal choices more than moral or public policy issues. In March, for the first time ever, Gallup found a majority of Republicans in favor of marijuana legalization, noting that “the trajectory of Americans’ views on marijuana is similar to that of their views on same-sex marriage over the past couple of decades.”

In those areas, Republicans have often argued that these issues are best left to the states, not to the federal government. That may be tougher to argue when dealing with online gambling, but states can and do regulate online commerce within their own sovereignties, as tax collections demonstrate. The question will be this: do we really want to expand federal government into more areas of personal choice and/or to act as the guarantor of private industry? The sports leagues seem to have survived for decades well enough with Nevada’s legalized sports betting and lots of illegal sports betting taking place everywhere else, enabled by online communications.

If nothing else, this will set up an interesting debate on the Right over the principles of smaller government, states’ rights, and moral signaling.

The post PASPA part two? Hatch pushes for federal control over sports gambling after SCOTUS loss appeared first on Hot Air.

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Speaker Babloyan: “Our priority is the security of our country and the people’s welfare”

Speaker of the Armenian National Assembly Ara Babloyan on Tuesday received the delegation led by Deputy Speaker of the Parliament (Riksdag) of Sweden Björn Söder, the parliament’s press service told Panorama.am. Welcoming the guests, Ara Babloyan …

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CalSTRS Moves Forward to Engage Firearms Makers and Retailers

The California State Teachers’ Retirement System today unveiled a plan to prioritize engagement with makers and retailers of firearms that are illegal in California. The plan , approved unanimously by the Teachers’ Retirement Board, authorizes CalSTRS corporate governance staff to make firearms engagement activities a top priority by publicly engaging companies and potentially recommending that the board consider divestment if engagement efforts fail.

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