US president pushes for immigration reform

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – US President Barack Obama said Tuesday 29 January that the time has come for a sweeping overhaul of the country’s immigration system, with a bipartisan approach to reform. On Monday a bipartisan commission presented a blueprint for immigration reform. Members of both parties heaped praise on the task force’s achievement, which will […]

US Congress targeted for law change to end citizenship-based taxation

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND -  A proposal to the US Congress to end the citizenship-based tax system used by the United States was unveiled Monday by a Geneva-based international group, American Citizens Abroad (ACA). The proposal follows a series of meeting between congressional leaders in Washington and Jackie Bugnion, ACA director, with ACA pushing the argument that […]

US health care bill inches forward with Senate vote

US Senate Republicans failed Wednesday 2 February in their bid to repeal the healthcare act that was passed in March 2010, as expected, but before the vote the lawmakers passed an amendment to reduce the healthcare plan’s paperwork for companies. The law, a key part of President Obama’s reforms, will provide coverage to 30 million […]

French Senate passes veil ban

By 246-1 the French Senate voted 14 September to ban the use in public of veils which cover the entire face. The National Assembly had previously passed the law, which must now be vetted by the Constitutional Council before it becomes law in six months’ time. Offenders face a €150 fine. France has Western Europe’s […]

US Senate close to passing health care bill

The US Senate passed the final of three hurdles for new health care legislation, and has scheduled a Christmas Eve day vote to pass its version of a bill. The 24 December vote requires a simple majority and is expected to pass. The next critical stage: negotiations with the House of  Representatives in January, but […]

Obama puts pressure on US Senate to pass health bill

The US House of Representatives  passed its version of a US health care reform Saturday 7 November and less than a day later President Barack Obama in a speech at the White House turned up pressure on the US Senate to quickly approve its own version of the bill. The House bill would cost $1.1 […]

US raises questions about former VP Cheney hiding CIA activities

The number of questions is growing about former US Vice-President Dick Cheney’s orders to the CIA to hide some of their activities from Congress. By law, congressional subcommittees must be informed of covert activities but CIA Director Leon Panetta testified to the Senate and House intelligence committees that he had been directed by Cheney to […]

Guantanamo takes centre stage: Obama, Cheney “face off,” inmate to have US trial

The Guantanamo Bay prison on the island of Cuba has been centre-stage this week in the US, with President Barack Obama and former Vice-President Dick Cheney appearing in what NPR describes as “dramatic, back-to-back televised speeches” on the future of Guantanamo and the release earlier in 2009 of classified documents on the use of torture. […]

US Senate agrees to tone down stimulus package “buy America” words

The White House has convinced the US Senate to tone down the language of its version of the $900 billion US economic stimulus package following angry outcries from other governments that the “buy America” language would hamper efforts to recover from the global economic crisis and flies in the face of trade agreements. IHT/New York […]