Friday’s Mini-Report, 9.18.15

Updated
Today’s edition of quick hits:
 
* Syria: “Secretary of State John Kerry said on Friday that the United States was prepared to engage in military-to-military talks with Russia concerning Syria, even as Russia continued its military buildup there by deploying fighter jets.”
 
* Bold move: “President Obama, in a historic first for the Pentagon, has chosen to nominate Eric Fanning to lead the Army, a move that would make him the first openly gay civilian secretary of one of the military services.”
 
* Kentucky: “An attorney for Deputy Clerk Brian Mason said Friday afternoon that Rowan County clerk Kim Davis removed her name from the county’s marriage license forms, disobeying a federal judge’s release order, the Associated Press reported.”
 
* Pakistan: “Taliban militants shot and killed at least 30 people, including 16 people in a mosque, at an air force base near this city in northwestern Pakistan on Friday, military officials said, in the first major assault on a Pakistani military installation this year.”
 
* Under the circumstances, this seems fair: “White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest on Friday spoke out forcefully against Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump’s failure to correct a voter who called President Barack Obama a Muslim, turning his criticism into a harsh indictment of Republicans at large.”
 
* Next stop, Supremes? “A U.S. appeals court has ruled that President Barack Obama’s healthcare law violates the rights of religiously affiliated employers by forcing them to help provide contraceptive coverage even though they do not have to pay for it.”
 
* Ahmed Mohamed is welcome to return to MacArthur High School in Irving, Texas, but it looks like he’ll take his talents elsewhere.
 
* A hero’s welcome: “US President Barack Obama on Thursday feted three Americans who helped thwart a train attack in France, welcoming them to the White House and hailing their courage.”
 
* Seems like a reasonable request: “Close to 80 Democrats are pushing Speaker John Boehner to keep the House in session until Congress passes a stop-gap funding measure to keep the government open.”
 
* Immigration: “The morning after a Republican presidential debate devoted partly to denigrating the Democratic president’s approach to immigration, President Obama on Thursday kicked off a campaign of his own – a public awareness drive to help 8.8 million eligible immigrants become naturalized U.S. citizens.”
 
* It’s not a bipartisan problem: Senate Republicans are confirming judicial nominees at a rate so slow, the current pace is unlike anything we’ve seen in more than six decades. When the Beltway assumes, “Both sides play the same partisan game,” that’s wrong.
 
* It’s called the Workplace Action for a Growing Economy (WAGE) Act: “[Democratic lawmakers] proposed a bill, crafted with the input of the AFL-CIO union federation, that would make workplace organizing akin to a civil right.”
 
* GAO findings: “U.S. railroads will not be able to meet a year-end deadline for installing automatic speed control devices, the lack of which contributed to the fatal Amtrak crash in Philadelphia, according to a report released Wednesday.”
 
* A success story: “Mozambique, formerly one of the most mined countries in the world, has been declared free of landmines…. Mozambique declared its mine-free status on Thursday, shortly after The Halo Trust, a British nonprofit that has been working for 22 years to clear Mozambique of landmines, destroyed the country’s last known device.”
 
Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.
 
 

Friday's Mini-Report, 9.18.15

Updated