The DC: Shutdown will continue into next week, and... 🐋 Do you support commercial whaling?
Join the 171,769 people who've taken action on Countable this week
by Countable | 12.28.18
Welcome to Friday, left, righter, and centers...
The partial government shutdown will continue until at least Monday, December 31st.
House leadership notified lawmakers that no votes are expected this week. Members have been told they'll get 24 hours notice as they "await Senate action" on legislation to re-open impacted agencies.
Meanwhile...on Christmas, the president claimed, without evidence, that the 400,000 employees working without pay support the shutdown as long as he secures additional funding for a border wall.
On Thursday morning, however, Trump fired off a tweet claiming, without verification, that "most of the people not getting paid are Democrats."
On the Radar
- Two children died in December while in the custody of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the most recent on Christmas day. In the wake of the second death, Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen announced on Wednesday that “in response to the unprecedented surge of children into our custody, I have directed a series of extraordinary protective measures.” But should the U.S. even be holding children in detention centers? If not, where should they be held? Click here to read all the pertinent info, then tell your reps: Should the U.S. hold children in detention centers?
- On December 28, 1973, President Richard Nixon signed the Endangered Species Act (ESA) of 1973 into law. The bill’s primary goal was to prevent the extinction of plant and animal life, including many native species by eliminating or lessening threats to their survival. Since then, the ESA has been modified multiple times. Most notably, a 1978 amendment obliged the federal government to consider the economic impact of designating critical habitat, and to review the endangered and threatened species list every five years. 45 years on, we ask: How do you feel about the Endangered Species Act on its anniversary?
Under the Radar
- A bipartisan bill that’d use royalties from existing energy development on public lands to fund the National Park Service’s nearly $12 billion maintenance backlog will move ahead early in the new Congress, after senators tried and failed to pass it unanimously last week. The National Park Service is massive: according to data from USAFacts it’s grown from 83.4 million acres in 1997 to more than 85 million acres in 2017 ― an area larger than New Mexico (America’s fifth largest state). Do you support the bipartisan National Parks maintenance bill?
- Countable’s ‘Elite 8’ Bill Acronyms of the 115th Congress. In honor of the 115th Congress entering its final days (amid a partial government shutdown) and politicians’ penchant for the pithy bill acronyms, we’ve put together another tournament in which you — Countable users — will choose the best bill acronym of the 115th Congress. We’ve reached the quarterfinals, where your winners from the spring, summer, and fall brackets plus the most competitive runner-up enter the competition. Voting will be open until midnight Thursday, and this round’s winners will face off in Saturday's semi-finals. Vote here.
Your Gov at a Glance 👀
The White House: President Trump in D.C.
- To be announced.
The House of Representatives: Out
- The House is expected to return on Monday, December 31st.
The Senate: Out
- The Senate is expected to return for a pro forma session on Monday, December 31st.
What You're Saying
Here's how you're answering Should the Violence Against Women Act Be Reauthorized?
(Follow OWorthyFool's comment here.)
(Follow KyleCorley's comment here.)
But wait, there's more!
- 'Invincible' Hypersonic Glide Weapon May Enter Russia’s Arsenal by 2020
- The Year in North Korea With Trump and 'Little Rocket Man'
- Trump Administration Will Appeal Judge’s Ruling on Asylum Ban
And, in the End…
Did you get a harpoon for the holidays? You may be in luck...
Japan has announced that it will resume commercial whaling in July 2019 and leave the International Whaling Commission. The IWC banned commercial whaling more than 30 years ago.
IWC has two missions: to protect whales and to promote a sustainable whaling industry. Japan claims the commission is no longer promoting sustainable whaling.
Conservationists are arguing that Japan has "aggressively pursued a well-funded whaling campaign to upend the global ban on commercial whaling."
May there be liberty and justice for all in honor of Pledge of Allegiance Day,
Talk to us via email at contact [at] countable.us. And don’t forget to keep in touch @Countable.
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