Low Popahirum, June 1, 2015

NATIONAL

In a remarkable turnaround, Senate Republicans have agreed to debate a House bill that would overhaul the National Security Agency’s handling of Americans’ calling records while preserving other domestic surveillance provisions.” – AP

“Instead, I believe we’re seeing the real Rand Paul in this debate. His opportunism consists not in blocking the Patriot Act, but in the scaling back of his foreign policy isolationism and blame America firstism that he undertook a few years ago as he attempted to go more mainstream (the old Rand Paul may be reemerging, though; he recently blamed Republicans for the rise of ISIS).” – Power Line

“Which brings us to May 7, and the Fairfax County, Virginia school board meeting where board members bowed to U.S. Department of Education (USDOE) bullying: Unless the board approved special treatment for transgendered students and teachers, the state’s largest school district would lose $42 million in federal funding.” – The Federalist

“We already knew that Iraq’s army was something of a disappointment (to put it kindly) in terms of standing up for themselves, but it seems that they may have been even more careless with the gear we gave them than was previously being reported. Vice News reveals that the Iraqi military has been given enough heavily armored Humvees to fill up the parking lots at Disneyland, but now a daunting number of them may be tooling around the desert with ISIS fighters at the wheel.” – Hot Air

“The 43 killings in May surpassed the 42 homicides the city saw in August 1990, and left Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake defending police and her administration.” – Baltimore Sun

“Denny Hastert used to visit the Wall Street Journal, where I worked while he was the speaker. He was a bland, utterly conventional supporter of the status quo; his idea of reform was to squelch anyone who disturbed Congress’s usual way of doing business. I saw him become passionate only once, when he defended earmarks — the special projects such as Alaska’s ‘Bridge to Nowhere’ that members dropped at the last minute into conference reports, deliberately leaving no time to debate or amend them. Earmarks reached the staggering level of 15,000 in 2005, and their stench helped cost the GOP control of Congress the next year.” – John Fund/National Review

“The two Democrats who have formally emerged to challenge Hillary Clinton for their party’s 2016 presidential nomination visited Iowa this weekend. Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders attracted overflow crowds in Ames and Davenport, then Sanders capped his three-day trip with a Saturday night stop in Kensett, where more than 300 people greeted him.” – Radio Iowa

“Some 53% of Democrats want illegal aliens to have the vote, according to a new poll. Naturally: Why wouldn’t they want millions of new members for their party and its Big Government agenda?” – Investor’s Business Daily

“After six decades serving as the global policeman, the United States is now signalling its retreat from the world. With the Middle East engulfed by the flames of sectarian conflict, Europe’s borders menaced by the threat of war and China starting to flex its muscles in Asia-Pacific, it is clear the world has entered a new period of volatility. That uncertainty begs tough questions for Britain: how should we respond to this new American pragmatism? And as our traditional ally turns inward, what should that mean for British foreign policy?” – Telegraph UK

“The news remains mostly bleak for the American newspaper industry, struggling over the past decade to adapt to the new digital landscape.” – Yahoo! News

LOUISIANA

“A Louisiana House legislative committee on Sunday abruptly canceled plans to take up a crucial but convoluted tax measure on Monday — a measure whose fate could determine whether the Legislature will confront Gov. Bobby Jindal over next year’s budget in the final days of the legislative session.” – Baton Rouge Advocate

Gov. Bobby Jindal tied for 14th place among 16 potential GOP presidential candidates in the latest poll of likely Iowa Republican caucus goers conducted by The Des Moines Register and Bloomberg Politics. Only one percent of the people surveyed said Jindal was their first choice among the Republican candidates, but the governor has a lot of company at the bottom of the poll. He is one of nine different Republican contenders to earn support of five percent or under.” – NOLA.com

“A Houston-based natural gas and oil company is focusing on building new wells and using horizontal drilling to develop what might be thousands of acres in Lincoln Parish for natural gas and natural gas liquids.” – Monroe News Star

“As professionals charged with making New Orleans look good to the outside world prepare bids to host future Super Bowls and college football national championships, will concerns over Louisiana’s religious freedom executive order thwart their efforts?” – NOLA.com

“Two environmental groups have asked the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to block a newly issued air operating permit for the first phase of Yuhuang Chemical’s proposed $1.85 billion methanol complex in St. James Parish.” – Baton Rouge Advocate

“A federal appeals court in New Orleans is set to hear arguments on whether the state must report to the U.S. government about schools and families in Louisiana’s program to provide some students with taxpayer-funded private school tuition vouchers.” – KATC

“The Louisiana Legislature is considering restrictions on its high-profile film tax credit program, but it wasn’t the only state considering putting limitations in place this year, according to The Pew Charitable Trusts. The Alaska Legislature killed its film tax credit program last month. Massachusetts and Michigan also considering dumping their film tax credits, according to Pew. There was a push to get rid of them in Maryland as well.” – NOLA.com

“The federal government is predicting a below-average 2015 hurricane season in the Atlantic Basin, it announced Wednesday. Three to six hurricanes are expected to form in the region, which includes the Atlantic, the Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico.” – WWL-TV

“LSU baseball coach Paul Mainieri needed to stay up Sunday past midnight into Monday mass e-mailing a ‘play hooky’ note to the Tigers’ fan base. It might be the only way LSU has any sort of crowd for its 12 noon game against North Carolina-Wilmington in the NCAA Regional finals at Alex Box Stadium.” – Ron Higgins/NOLA.com

“Shortly after LSU’s history-making softball season came to an abrupt end Sunday afternoon, coach Beth Torina tried to put things in context for her players.” – Baton Rouge Advocate



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