Mississippi law banning abortions as early as 6 weeks heads to federal court

Jackson, Mississippi (CNN)It was only six months ago that federal district Judge Carlton Reeves struck down a Mississippi law that banned abortion after 15 weeks of pregnancy, holding that the state was “wrong on the law” and that its Legislature’s “professed interest” in women’s health amounted to “pure gaslighting.” “We have come very far in the last two years,” Trump tweeted. Reeves is no stranger to the President’s tweets. He gained national prominence last month when he delivered a speech at the University of Virginia Law School evoking the history of the South to publicly criticize Trump for his attacks on judges. Quoting from Trump’s tweets, campaign speeches and interviews, but never using the President’s name, Reeves said: “When politicians …

Hillary Clinton: Abortion bills in Alabama and other states are ‘appalling attacks on women’s lives’

Washington DC (CNN)Hillary Clinton on Wednesday called the recently signed abortion law in Alabama, and other pieces of legislation that restrict access to the procedure, an example of “appalling attacks on women’s lives and fundamental freedoms.” “None of us should accept a future in which our daughters and granddaughters have fewer rights than we do. Choose a way to help, ask a friend to join you, and let’s get to work,” Clinton added, pointing her followers to advocacy groups and organizations that are working “to elect pro-choice candidates” and “organize for the future.” The Alabama Senate passed the bill 25-6 late Tuesday night and it found its way to Ivey’s desk on Wednesday. The measure appears aimed at setting up …

It’s Trump vs. Xi in the China trade war — and it’s personal

(CNN)Neither Donald Trump nor Xi Jinping can afford to blink. Both see the honor of their nation at stake at a crucial moment in the history of US-China relations, as the emerging competition between two great powers becomes sharper than ever. While Trump has said the two sides were on the verge of a deal last week before China backed out, the gulf in intention between the two giant economies will complicate future talks. Trump — lambasting Chinese intellectual property theft and support for state industries — believes he has to change the global trading system itself because it is a massive ripoff for the United States. And Trump thinks the strength of the US economy gives him an edge …

Chelsea Manning sent back to jail after refusing to testify before a grand jury again

(CNN)Chelsea Manning was once again found in contempt by a federal judge for refusing to testify before a grand jury and will return to jail, just seven days after being released from the same jail. Assistant US Attorney Thomas Traxler argued Thursday that “Manning holds the keys to the jailhouse door,” while Manning told Judge Anthony Trenga that she would “rather starve to death” than testify. “I would rather starve to death than change my opinions in that regard,” Manning told Trenga, reiterating her opposition to the secretive grand jury process. Trenga replied, “There’s nothing dishonorable in fulfilling your obligation as a United States citizen,” before ruling on the specific sanctions the court would put in place. In a statement …

Trump’s contempt for Congress is apparent

Washington (CNN)House Democrats might as well save everyone’s time and declare the entire Trump administration in contempt of Congress. Democrats may also vote to hold Trump’s former White House counsel Don McGahn in contempt of Congress if he fails to provide subpoenaed documents related to the Russia investigation by a 10 a.m. ET deadline on Tuesday, a source involved in the discussions told CNN. The White House has signaled it might invoke executive privilege to prevent the handover and testimony by McGahn. Meanwhile, Trump’s former personal lawyer Michael Cohen went to prison, in part for a crime in which the President was implicated. And a group of 450 bipartisan former Justice Department officials declared that Trump would already have faced …

What is the European parliament and do the elections matter?

As Europe prepares to go to the polls, we look at the workings of the union and where its power lies Why do the European elections matter? Europes twice-a-decade parliamentary elections are the second largest democratic contest in the world after Indias (which are incidentally still ongoing). An estimated 374 million people are old enough to vote in European Union elections that will see MEPs elected for a five-year term. First contested in 1979, the vote is now being taken more seriously than ever before. Both pro- and anti-EU politicians see the elections as a springboard to seize control of Europes agenda. French president Emmanuel Macron has said the contest will be decisive at the most perilous moment for Europe …

Chelsea Manning released from Virginia jail after 62 days

(CNN)Former Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning has been released from federal custody after spending about two months in jail for refusing to testify about her disclosure of military and diplomatic secrets to WikiLeaks in 2010, according to a statement from her legal team. The second subpoena would have her appear before a different grand jury next week, “but for (the) same questions,” according to a tweet posted on Manning’s Twitter account Thursday night. “It is therefore conceivable that she will once again be held in contempt of court, and be returned to the custody of the Alexandria Detention Center, possibly as soon as next Thursday, May 16,” Manning’s team said in the statement. “Chelsea will continue to refuse to answer …

Is Melania Trump’s Be Best platform making headway one year in?

(CNN)Exactly one year after announcing her long-awaited Be Best platform, Melania Trump is scheduled to return to the Rose Garden on Tuesday to push the campaign forward. “I don’t want to get too far ahead of any announcements she will make at the [anniversary] celebration, but we have expanded two of the three pillars based on information and lessons learned over the past year,” Grisham tells CNN. “Her expansion of the opioids pillar will now include speaking to children of all ages, and her expansion of the social media pillar will now focus on online safety as a whole.” Trump has put her focus in the opioid sector primarily on Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome, a little-discussed but medically challenging side effect …

Minnesota moves toward banning ‘conversion therapy’ but it’s still legal in many states

(CNN)Minnesota is the latest state to move toward making so-called “conversion therapy” illegal. Here’s a look at what conversion therapy entails and what states are doing about it. Health professionals reject the practice Conversion therapy can take many different forms. It could be a licensed mental health professional sitting across from a “patient” on a couch or it could be a religious adviser trying to “pray the gay away,” Sam Brinton, Head of Advocacy and Government Affairs for The Trevor Project and a survivor of conversion therapy, explained to CNN. It could also involve physical aversion methods, such as shock therapy or snapping a rubber band on one’s wrist to discourage same-sex attraction. Leading medical and mental health professional organizations …

Rep. Seth Moulton disagrees with Trump and Ocasio-Cortez on VA, says the department ‘is broken’

Washington (CNN)Democratic Rep. Seth Moulton, a Marine Corps veteran, said he disagrees with Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and President Donald Trump’s recent claims that the Department of Veteran Affairs isn’t in need of fixing, arguing Sunday that the department “is broken.” Moulton, who is also a 2020 presidential hopeful, told Tapper that veterans “deserve the best health care in the world — period. And it’s clear they are not getting it.” He added that the privatization of health care for veterans “should be an option” if the department is unable to sufficiently care for them. “It doesn’t mean that we should just dismantle the VA. If you ask veterans, they want to fix the VA,” Moulton said. “They want to improve …

New Hampshire senator to call on 2020 Democrats to support repeal of voter residency law

(CNN)New Hampshire Sen. Jeanne Shaheen plans to send 2020 Democratic presidential candidates a letter Monday, urging them to sign a petition condemning a state law that would require college students to be a permanent resident of the state to vote. In her letter, which CNN obtained ahead of its publication, Shaheen argues that the law effectively creates a “poll tax” for college students. “They are being disenfranchised by photo ID requirements, arbitrary challenges to residency, and unfounded allegations of fraud,” Shaheen writes. President Donald Trump has claimed, without evidence, that thousands of people were bused from Massachusetts to vote illegally in New Hampshire, which he narrowly lost in the 2016 state primary. New Hampshire Secretary of State Bill Gardner refuted …

Trump’s Fed pick Stephen Moore is a self-described ‘radical’ who said he’s not a ‘big believer in democracy’

(CNN)Stephen Moore, who President Donald Trump announced last month as his nominee for the Federal Reserve Board of Governors, has a history of advocating self-described “radical” views on the economy and government. Trump announced he would nominate Moore to the Federal Reserve Board of Governors last month. Moore works at the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank. He served as an adviser to Trump during the 2016 presidential campaign and is a friend of the president’s economic adviser Larry Kudlow. He was formerly a CNN contributor. The nomination immediately drew criticism because Moore has been a fierce critic of the Federal Reserve and its chairman Jerome Powell. In 2015, he called for abolishing the Federal Reserve and returning to a …

Kim Kardashian West is studying law: welcome to the new seriousness | Gaby Hinsliff

Vacuous celebrity could be on its way out its no longer enough to be famous for being famous, says Guardian columnist Gaby Hinsliff Kim Kardashian West is studying to be a lawyer. The reality TV star who once tried to break the internet with a photograph of her bottom defended OJ Simpson in one of the most racially charged trials in living memory. The prisoner in whose case she intervened, Van Jones, the prison reform campaigner who accompanied Kardashian West to the White House, also describes his new ally as the mother of three black kids. That has very specific resonances in a USA where black and mixed-race families (if not necessarily those with Kim and her husband Kanye Wests …

Trump tees up a health care fight with an uncertain outcome

Washington (CNN)President Donald Trump has been adamant about one point this week: “The Republican Party will soon be known as the party of health care.” But Trump has been obstinate in the face of those political warning signs, instead concerned that repealing and replacing Obamacare remains the one signature 2016 campaign promise he has yet to make good on. It’s with that in mind that Trump backed his White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney’s arguments that the administration should support a federal judge’s ruling in Texas invalidating Obamacare in its entirety, a senior White House official and Republican close to the campaign told CNN. “Right now in the Texas court — probably ends up in the Supreme Court,” Trump …

DeVos blasted again for proposing cuts to the Special Olympics

Washington (CNN)For the third year in a row, Democrats dinged Education Secretary Betsy DeVos on Tuesday for proposing to cut funds from the Special Olympics, after-school programs and support for students from low-income families. Overall, DeVos proposed a 12% decrease in funding for her department for fiscal year 2020. Lawmakers have rejected the Trump administration’s previous efforts, increasing the Education Department budget instead, even when Republicans controlled both the Senate and House. Even though the secretary’s budget has even less of a chance of being adopted this year, it lays out a set of priorities for the administration — and gives advocacy groups plenty to complain about. One proposal that has repeatedly gotten attention from lawmakers is DeVos’ suggestion to …

Kellyanne Conway’s husband is trying to tell the public Trump is mentally ill. She doesn’t agree

Washington (CNN)Her husband believes President Donald Trump’s mental condition is deteriorating. Kellyanne Conway, Trump’s top White House counselor, disagrees. This weekend, as Trump was lobbing his own Twitter invective in all directions, George Conway responded with screengrabs showing the medical definitions of narcissistic personality disorder and antisocial personality disorder from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. “*All* Americans should be thinking seriously *now* about Trump’s mental condition and psychological state, including and especially the media, Congress—and the Vice President and Cabinet,” he wrote. On Sunday, he stated simply: “His condition is getting worse.” Perhaps unsurprisingly, that sentiment was not repeated by the half of the Conway couple that works inside the White House. “I have four kids and …