African Union calls on DRC to delay election announcement

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Bloc has ‘serious doubts’ over vote, for which declared runner up has called a recount

The African Union has issued a surprise last-minute demand for the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s government to suspend the announcement of final results of the deeply disputed presidential election.

DRC’s constitutional court is poised to rule as early as Friday on a challenge filed by the election’s declared runner-up. Martin Fayulu has requested a recount, alleging fraud.

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Immigrants from New Origin Countries in the United States

The national origins of new arrivals to the United States are shifting, in ways not always fully appreciated. Recent newcomers are more likely to come from Asia, Central America, and Africa, and less likely to be from Mexico. This article offers key demographic information about the 15 immigrant groups that have experienced the largest growth since 2010, including Indians, Chinese, Colombians, Nigerians, and Bangladeshis.

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The national origins of new arrivals to the United States are shifting, in ways not always fully appreciated. Recent newcomers are more likely to come from Asia, Central America, and Africa, and less likely to be from Mexico. This article offers key demographic information about the 15 immigrant groups that have experienced the largest growth since 2010, including Indians, Chinese, Colombians, Nigerians, and Bangladeshis.

Challengers urge justices to dismiss census case after district court ruling

Challengers urge justices to dismiss census case after district court ruling

On February 19, the Supreme Court is scheduled to hear oral argument in U.S. Department of Commerce v. U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, a dispute over evidence in a challenge to the Trump administration’s decision to reinstate a question about citizenship on the 2020 census. The justices agreed in November to review the case, but they also rejected the government’s request to put the trial in the case on hold. The district court went ahead with the trial, and on Tuesday it issued its decision, blocking the government from using the citizenship question on the census. Today the challengers asked the justices to dismiss the case, telling them that the district court’s ruling “has fundamentally altered the circumstances that were present” when the Supreme Court granted review.

The dispute arose in March 2018, when Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced that the 2020 census would include a question about citizenship. The government explained that including a citizenship question would help the Department of Justice better enforce federal voting-rights laws, but the decision drew a court challenge from a group of states, cities and counties, who argue that the question will discourage undocumented immigrants from responding to the census, skewing the results.

The challengers sought to question Ross and John Gore, the acting head of DOJ’s civil rights division. The Supreme Court blocked the challengers from questioning Ross but allowed them to depose Gore and to seek facts outside the official administrative record.

On Tuesday, the district court issued its ruling, barring the government from including the citizenship question on the 2020 census. Relying only on the official record, the district court concluded that the government’s conduct involved a “smorgasbord of classic, clear-cut” violations of the federal law governing administrative agencies.

In a statement issued later that day, a spokeswoman for DOJ described the government as “disappointed” and “still reviewing the ruling,” but she also argued that the government was “legally entitled to include” the question – suggesting that the government planned to appeal. But as of this afternoon, the government had not yet acted. Instead, the challengers seized the initiative, filing a motion to dismiss the Supreme Court case.

The challengers told the justices that the question in the Supreme Court case centers on whether the district court was “correct to order” the Ross deposition. But, the challengers said, that issue is now moot – that is, no longer a “live” controversy – because the district court made its decision without questioning Ross and vacated the order requiring Ross’ deposition. Any remaining questions about whether the district court should have allowed fact-finding outside the official record can be addressed if the government appeals, the challengers argued.

With a deadline of June 2019 to finalize the census questionnaire looming, the challengers contended that it would be more efficient for all of the issues in the dispute to be considered together, rather than first litigating the dispute over the evidence in the Supreme Court. If the government wants relief from the district court’s ruling barring it from using the citizenship question on the 2020 census, the challengers concluded, it can seek an expedited appeal.

This post was first published at Howe on the Court.

The post Challengers urge justices to dismiss census case after district court ruling appeared first on SCOTUSblog.

Trans-Atlantic rebuke for Trump downgrade of EU ambassador | Americas| North and South American news impacting on Europe | DW | 17.01.2019

There was no about-face in the US government after DW broke news that the EU ambassador’s status had been downgraded. But one expert has said lawmakers’ rebukes show the trans-Atlantic network still operates – a bit.

Source: Trans-Atlantic rebuke for Trump downgrade of EU ambassador | Americas| North and South American news impacting on Europe | DW | 17.01.2019

Indigenous Corn Keepers are Helping Communities Recover and Reunite with Their Traditional Foods

Onondaga Nation, New York – Angela Ferguson opens a door unveiling thousands of jars filled with corn seeds from across Turtle Island. The color and the sheer number of seed varieties washing over the room is overwhelming in and of itself, but it is what these seeds represent that is truly inspiring. Angela Ferguson is […]

Trump intensifies feud with Pelosi by calling off her trip abroad | US news | The Guardian

A White House official said all other Codels were being canceled while the government remained closed. Pelosi’s office countered that Trump traveled to Iraq during the shutdown, as did a Codel led by Republican representative Lee Zeldin. Trump’s abrupt decision took Pelosi’s congressional delegation by surprise, as some lawmakers were reportedly already sitting on a US air force bus outside the Capitol trying to determine if they should proceed with their travel plans. Even some of the president’s allies expressed frustration at his retaliatory action. “One sophomoric response does not deserve another,” said South Carolina senator Lindsey Graham, a usually reliably vocal Trump ally in recent months. “Speaker Pelosi’s threat to cancel the State of the Union is very irresponsible and blatantly political. President Trump denying Speaker Pelosi military travel to visit our troops in Afghanistan, our allies in Egypt and Nato is also inappropriate.”

Source: Trump intensifies feud with Pelosi by calling off her trip abroad | US news | The Guardian

ICE Withholding Double-Amputee’s Prosthetic Arm as He Awaits Deportation – No limit to ICE inhumanity!

“When he was tied up in the back of a transport vehicle, his prosthetic arm was damaged, and it was taken from him,” Perez said. “To this day, it has not yet been returned.” After his prosthetic leg was taken by ICE agents for repair, Valladares Diaz was given a crutch designed for use by elderly, two-legged people. Despite making numerous complaints, his leg was not returned to him for more than five months, and he was forced to use a wheelchair. In the meantime, he was written up for disciplinary violations after not being able to stand during head count. “When he didn’t get up to stand in line for counts, an officer wrote a complaint about him, even though he could be seen there lying in his bed, because he doesn’t have access to his leg,” Perez said. “He actually got a disciplinary complaint for not standing up in line for count!”

Source: ICE Withholding Double-Amputee’s Prosthetic Arm as He Awaits Deportation