Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell slammed House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's draft proposal for a commission to investigate the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol, calling it "partisan by design."

President Biden's nominee to lead the CIA, William Burns, spent more than three decades as a diplomat. Yet Burns sounded very much like a national security chief at his confirmation hearing Wednesday as he described how the U.S. should be wary of China and its leader Xi Jinping.

"There are a growing number of areas in which Xi's China is a formidable, authoritarian adversary," Burns told the Senate Intelligence Committee in his opening remarks.

As President Joe Biden works to overhaul U.S. health care policy, few challenges will loom larger for his health secretary than restoring access to family planning while parrying legal challenges to abortion proliferating across the country.

Physicians, clinics and women's health advocates are looking to Xavier Becerra, Biden's nominee to run the Department of Health and Human Services, to help swiftly unwind Trump-era funding cuts and rules that have decimated the nation's network of reproductive health providers over the past four years.

The Biden administration will distribute millions of face coverings to thousands of community health centers and food banks in an effort to help vulnerable Americans more easily mask up, officials said on Wednesday.

Amnesty International says it no longer considers jailed Russian anti-Kremlin activist Alexei Navalny a "prisoner of conscience," citing past comments he's made that "reach the threshold of advocacy of hatred."

The cost of repairing damages from the attack on the U.S. Capitol and related security expenses have already topped $30 million and will keep rising, Architect of the Capitol J. Brett Blanton told lawmakers on Wednesday.

The events of Jan. 6, he said, were "difficult for the American people and extremely hard for all of us on campus to witness."

Blanton said that congressional appropriations committees have already approved a transfer request of $30 million to pay for expenses and extend a temporary perimeter fencing contract through March 31.

From Texas Standard:

As many Texans continue to work their way through the ripple effects of last week's storm and outages, there's little question that the operator of the electrical grid system in Texas is in the hot seat. Lawmakers are planning investigations and the governor is demanding the resignation of the chief of the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, or ERCOT.

Carbon Is A New Cash Crop For Some Farmers

15 hours ago

There’s been a lot of hype around how farmers can make money from selling the carbon their plants naturally remove from the air, but there are still questions about how much of a difference these markets can make in reducing greenhouse gases.  


As COVID cases began to rise a year ago, a Chinese company contacted several U.S. states and offered to set up testing labs. As a byproduct, the Chinese firm, Beijing Genomics Institute, would likely gain access to the DNA of those tested.

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Morning News Brief

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When the annual Conservative Political Action Conference — CPAC for short — kicks off Thursday in Orlando, Fla., it might as well be called TPAC.

That's because this year, it is all about Trump.

The former president will headline the event with a Sunday afternoon keynote address, his first speech since leaving office last month.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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