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State GOP lawmakers try to limit teaching about race, racism

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Teachers and professors in Idaho will be prevented from “indoctrinating” students on race. Oklahoma teachers will be prohibited from saying certain people are inherently racist or oppressive, whether consciously or unconsciously. Tennessee schools will risk losing state aid if their lessons include particular concepts about race and racism.

Governors and legislatures in Republican-controlled states across the country are moving to define what race-related ideas can be taught in public schools and colleges, a reaction to the nation’s racial reckoning after last year’s police killing of George Floyd. The measures have been signed into law in at least three states and are being considered in many more.

Educators and education groups are concerned that the proposals will have a chilling effect in the classroom and that students could be . . .

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EXPLAINER: What’s the Senate filibuster and why change it?

WASHINGTON (AP) — Minority Republicans used a Senate filibuster to block a Democratic bill that would have launched a bipartisan probe of the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol. It was the first time under President Joe Biden that the GOP used the tactic to derail major legislation.

Yet the Republican victory Friday may prod Democrats closer to curbing or eliminating a legislative maneuver that’s been the bane of Senate majorities since the Founding Fathers.

Here’s a look at the filibuster and the political storm over it.

WHAT’S A FILIBUSTER?

Unlike the House, the Senate places few constraints on lawmakers’ right to speak. Senators can also use the chamber’s rules to . . .

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GOP blocks Capitol riot probe, displaying loyalty to Trump

WASHINGTON (AP) — Senate Republicans on Friday blocked creation of a bipartisan panel to investigate the deadly Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol, displaying continuing party loyalty to former President Donald Trump and firm determination to shift the political focus away from the violent insurrection by his GOP supporters.

The Senate vote was 54-35 — six short of the 60 needed — to take up a House-passed bill that would have formed an independent 10-member commission evenly split between the two parties. It came a day after emotional appeals for the commission from police who fought the mob, the family of an officer who . . .

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Ex-Speaker Ryan to GOP: Reject Trump, ‘2nd-rate imitations’

Emerging from two years of relative silence, former House Speaker Paul Ryan has joined the fight against Donald Trump, urging fellow conservatives to reject the former president’s divisive politics and those Republican leaders who emulate him.

Ryan made his remarks during a Thursday evening address at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in California. He was critical of both Republicans and Democrats, though he saved his sharpest barbs for . . .

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GOP offers $928B on infrastructure, funded with COVID aid

WASHINGTON (AP) — Republican senators outlined a $928 billion infrastructure proposal Thursday that would tap unused coronavirus aid, a counteroffer to President Joe Biden’s more sweeping plan as the two sides struggle to negotiate a bipartisan compromise and remain far apart on how to pay for the massive spending.

The Republican offer would increase spending by $91 billion on roads and bridges, $48 billion on water resources and $25 billion on airports, according to a one-page summary released by the GOP negotiators. It also would provide for one-time increases in broadband investments, at $65 billion, and $22 billion on rail.

Republicans have rejected Biden’s proposed corporate tax increase to pay for new investments, and instead want to shift unspent . . .

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GOP senators set summer deadline on Congress’ policing bill

WASHINGTON (AP) — Congressional bargainers should reach a bipartisan deal on revamping policing procedures by early summer or abandon the effort, Republicans said Wednesday, a day after George Floyd’s family used visits to the White House and the Capitol to prod lawmakers to act.

“I think it’s June or bust,” lead GOP bargainer Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina told reporters, the day after the anniversary of Floyd’s slaying at the hands of Minneapolis police. “We’ve got three weeks in June to get this done.”

“I think if it’s going to happen, it’ll happen before the July break,” said Sen. Lindsey Graham, Scott’s fellow South . . .

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