The U.S. House passed a bill that critics say would severely hobble the program of allowing Syrian and Iraqi refugees into the country—with enough votes to override a threatened veto by President Barack Obama. Democrats in the Senate, however, have vowed that it will not pass that chamber. The legislation would require an FBI background check on each potential refugee. It would also require the heads of the FBI, Department of Homeland Security and the director of national intelligence to personally sign off on each refugee from Syria and Iraq. Those supporting the bill have said that it is necessary, in light of the recent terror attacks in Paris, to ensure no terrorists are included among those seeking refugee status in the United States.
As national discussions about defunding Planned Parenthood continue with no signs of stopping, some New Mexico officials have said they want see an investigation into local offices. Last week Lt. Gov. John Sanchez, a Republican, issued a statement on Facebook saying he was “completely appalled to learn of the practices by some at Planned Parenthood to harvest and sell the organs and body parts from aborted babies.”
He echoed what many national Republicans have been saying since the release of the first of a series of undercover videos released by anti-abortion activists. Some members of Congress have been calling for an investigation into Planned Parenthood after the videos, which are heavily edited, appeared to show the group sold fetal tissue for a profit. Planned Parenthood released a statement on Tuesday refuting the claims after another video surfaced. The statement accused the individuals who captured the video of violating patients’ rights and said that the videos were edited and deceiving.
Local officials in southeastern New Mexico as well as the Susana Martinez administration are pushing for more nuclear waste to be sent to southeastern New Mexico. The Santa Fe New Mexican reported on a letter from Gov. Susana Martinez to Department of Energy secretary Earnest Moniz. The letter asked the Barack Obama administration to consider southeastern New Mexico as a location to hold spent fuel rods from nuclear power plants. The New Mexican also has a copy of the letter available online. From the New Mexican:
“Time and time again, the citizens of southeastern New Mexico have impressed me with their hard work ethic and willingness to tackle national problems that many others consider to be unsolvable,” Martinez wrote.