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Politics Today

George W. Bush Hospitalized, Government Sues Bank of America, and More

Heart of Texas:

Former President George W. Bush is recovering in a Dallas hospital after undergoing a successful heart procedure Tuesday to open up a blocked artery. Bush got the news that he needed the surgery during a routine physical examination Monday. “At the recommendation of his doctors, President Bush agreed to have a stent placed to open the blockage,” his spokesman said. The 67-year-old is said to be in “high spirits” and is expected to return home Wednesday. (Read more)

Benghazi Action: Federal prosecutors have filed the first criminal charges related to the terrorist attacks on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, that left four Americans, including the U.S. ambassador, dead. The charges, which have been sealed, were filed against Libyan militia leader Ahmed Khattalah, who investigators believe was involved in the September 11, 2012, attacks. Khattalah acknowledged to CNN’s Arwa Damon in a recent interview that he had been in Benghazi the day of the assaults, but denied taking part in them. The FBI and the Justice Department haven’t commented, which is normal procedure for complaints that are under seal. (Read more)

Mortgage Suit: The U.S. government is going after Bank of America. In a pair of lawsuits filed Tuesday, the Justice Department and the Securities and Exchange Commission accused the banking giant of defrauding investors by cloaking the risk on $850 million of residential mortgage-backed securities. The government dated the securities to January 2008, around the time the global financial crisis began. Attorney General Eric Holder said the legal action against BofA was “the latest step forward in the Justice Department’s ongoing efforts to hold accountable those who engage in fraudulent or irresponsible conduct.” (Read more)

Bezos’ Beneficence: Amazon founder Jeff Bezos’ political contributions have received heightened scrutiny in the last 24 hours since he announced his plans to acquire The Washington Post, as many try to glean something about his leanings. Roll Call’s Political Moneyline did a little digging and discovered that Bezos primarily gave money to candidates in his home state of Washington–of both parties–and to politicians dealing with issues that affect his company. Among those still serving in D.C. who have been on the receiving end of his financial contributions: Washington Sens. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell; Vermont Sen. Patrick Leahy, the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee; and Michigan Rep. John Conyers Jr., the ranking Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee. (Read more)

Fishy Business: It didn’t take long for Wyoming Republican Senate candidate Liz Cheney’s campaign to be caught up in a wave of controvery. The daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney is in hot water after a report revealed that she improperly obtained a state resident fishing license by giving incorrect information, an offense that could lead to a misdemeanor charge and a fine of up to $1,000. According to the state’s Casper Star-Tribune, Cheney stated on her application that she was a 10-year resident of Wyoming in 2012, when she had closed on her home there only 72 days earlier. “At this point we’re going to follow up on this like any other residency issues,” Wyoming Game and Fish project coordinator Mark Nelson explained. “It’s at the initial stages of verification.” Cheney insists that she “never claimed to be a 10-year resident” of Wyoming, blaming the problem on a clerk’s error. (Read more)

Video of the Day: Interim “Daily Show” host John Oliver slammed North Carolina, Florida and Texas for enacting what he called a “Sharknado of voter suppression” in the wake of the Supreme Court’s recent ruling in the Shelby County v. Holder case that gutted the Voting Rights Act. The three states wasted no time in the wake of the court’s decision, passing restrictive laws that quickly proved why the court’s ruling was a bad one. In order to demonstrate his point, Oliver played a clip from the recent cult film in which a shark lands on a man’s head after another one bites his arm off. “Imagine your voting rights being subjected to this,” he said. “That is literally what the Supreme Court has given states license to do.”

Tracy Bloom
Assistant Editor
Tracy Bloom left broadcast news to study at USC's Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. There she eventually became deputy editor of Neon Tommy, the most-trafficked online-only college website in…
Tracy Bloom

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