5 Things to Know This Weekend: June 30, 2017
Liz Biscevic—5 Things to Know Today
Happy 4th of July weekend! Here are five things to know from the week, so you can at least appear well-informed as you relax by the nearest swimming hole.
The Supreme Court says they will hear arguments over immigration cases filed in Hawaii and Maryland and decide the outcome of President Trump’s revised travel ban that has been on hold since March. As part of the process, SCOTUS removed the two lower courts’ orders against the ban, which Trump called “a clear victory for our national security.” The revised executive order will block new visas for travelers from six majority-Muslim countries for 90 days and suspend the U.S. refugee program for 120 days. However, for folks "similarly situated" to the plaintiffs in the Maryland and Hawaii lawsuits, foreign nationals with close family relatives in the U.S. and/or plans to work or study here.
Computer systems around the glob, but particularly in Europe, were hit with a ransomware cyberattack. That’s the kind of virus that locks people out of their computers until they pay a fee to get back in. Government, transit, banking, and airline systems were affected, with much damage centering on Ukraine. Days after the attack was first discovered, some experts are worried this is far more than just a ploy to get money, but an attempt to interfere with Ukraine itself.
The measures focus on in-bound foreign flights to the U.S., and could include more K9 dogs, interviewing passengers before boarding, and new explosives-detecting mechanisms. Once airports implement these new security measures, the in-flight laptop ban that was put in place in March will be lifted.
On Thursday, it came out that the Senate added $45 billion to their healthcare bill to help combat America’s opioid crisis.
Much of the GOP plan to overhaul the Affordable Care Act involves cutting federal funding to Medicaid—which helps low-income Americans pay for health insurance, including substance abuse treatment. In case you missed it, there’s lots of Americans addicted to opioids—almost 500 percent more than in 2010. To appease some skeptical GOP lawmakers like Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio, $45 billion was added to the bill and directed to the opioid epidemic in the hopes that this would help secure votes needed to pass the embattled bill. The Senate is planning to vote on the bill after the holiday weekend.
Germany now joins the majority of Western Europe in recognizing gay marriage. Chancellor Angela Merkel and her conservative-leaning Christian Democratic party has opposed legalizing LGBT unions; the rest of the country, however, is overall supportive of the issue, and earlier this week Merkel agreed to put it up to vote. The bill still has to go through Germany’s upper house of parliament, which will delay the measure's enactment but is more or less a formality.