Tuesday December 11, 2018
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Venkaiah Naidu blames Congress for finding reasons to disrupt parliament

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Hyderabad: Reiterating that the Narendra Modi government has nothing to do with the National Herald case, Parliamentary Affairs Minister M Venkaiah Naidu on Sunday said the Congress party was inventing reasons to disrupt parliament.

He told reporters here that it has become a habit of the Congress to stall parliament on some issue or the other.

“They don’t know what they are doing and for what they are striking. They are inventing reasons for disrupting parliament,” he said.

Claiming that the country is making progress under Modi’s leadership, Naidu said the opposition party was unable to digest this and hence was stalling key bills in parliament.

Naidu advised the Congress not to bring court matters on the roads. He said the political parties should guide people and provide leadership but taking out processions over court summons and burning effigies of the Prime Minister amounts to insulting courts. He described it an indirect pressure on the judiciary.

He also wondered how the bail granted on Saturday by a Delhi court to Congress President Sonia Gandhi and Vice-President Rahul Gandhi in the National Herald case could be celebrated as a victory.

The central minister said Modi had nothing to do with the case as it was filed in 2012 when Manmohan Singh was the Prime Minister.

Naidu recalled that when Modi as Chief Minister of Gujarat received a summon by Special Investigation Team, he appeared before SIT without any procession and disruption in either parliament or in Gujarat assembly.

“The Congress party says that the government is targeting opponents, but people know who targeted opponents, murdered democracy, sent lakhs of people to jails and muzzled the voice of press,” he said, adding that Congress has no right to criticize the government.

Naidu also flayed the Aam Admi Party (AAP) for making baseless allegations against Finance Minister Arun Jaitley to divert people’s attention from the charges they are facing.

“Arun Jaitley is the most popular, dynamic, honest and capable minister with most impeccable character,” he said.(IANS)

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Democrats in Congress Ready To Take Control

This is about us lifting up the voices, the stories, the struggles, the innovation and the ideas of the people that we represent.

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Rep.-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, left, speaks at a small rally outside an orientation meeting for incoming members of Congress at Harvard University. Rep.-elect Ayanna Pressley, right, and Rep.-elect Lori Trahan, second from right, look on in Cambridge, Mass. VOA

Incoming members of the Democratic Party’s new U.S. House majority say they’re ready to turn the energy of their campaigns into real power on Capitol Hill.

Rep.-elects Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts and a handful of other liberal-leaning incoming Democrats used an orientation event for freshman lawmakers Tuesday sponsored by the Harvard Kennedy School’s Institute of Politics to stake out some of their top issues – from gun violence to health care to climate change.

They say they’re ready to leverage their victories at the ballot box into victories in Congress — an institution that prizes seniority.

Pressley said power is about more than just how many terms a lawmaker has served.

“It’s a confluence of things. It’s about the committees that we’ll be appointed to. It’s about the values- and issues-based caucuses that we’ll serve on. And it’s about us simply leveraging the platform that we have available to us as well as our social media networks,” Pressley said.

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Democratic congressional candidate Ilhan Omar reacts after appearing at her midterm election night party in Minneapolis, Minnesota. VOA

Pressley won election to the House by beating a fellow Democrat – longtime U.S. Rep. Michael Capuano – in a September primary.

Ocasio-Cortez said like-minded incoming Democratic members of the House have the numbers needed to press their case for change.

“We have a magic number in the House … and it’s 218,” she said. “Two hundred and eighteen is the magic number to get things done and how many member Democratic freshmen do we have? Sixty Three. Sixty-three of that 218 is brand new and 35 of that 63 have rejected corporate PAC money, 35 of that 63 is not funded by opioid companies, not funded by the NRA, not funded by for-profit health care, not funded by fossil fuels. Thirty-five are independent of the interests of corporate influence.”

Like Pressley, Ocasio-Cortez also won election by defeating another veteran Democratic incumbent – Joe Crowley – in New York’s June primary.

Ocasio-Cortez said Democrats have to fight back against an opposition she said “is predicated on us being turned against each other, of us accepting the idea of zero-sum thinking that one community’s gain must be another community’s loss.”

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Rep.-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Democrat-New York, talks during a news conference with members of the Progressive Caucus in Washington. VOA

“We know that all of our issues are tied and are the same,” she added. “There is no health care justice without gun violence reform.”

Ocasio-Cortez and Pressley have both pledged to support Nancy Pelosi as House Speaker after Democrats take control of the House in January.

Other new and incoming Democratic House members who spoke at Tuesday’s event include Lori Trahan of Massachusetts, Mary Gay Scanlon of Pennsylvania and Andy Levin of Michigan.

Pressley said the timing of Tuesday’s press conference wasn’t meant as a rejection of the Harvard orientation event.

Also Read: Political Ads Under Scrutiny By Google Before The EU Elections

On its website the school says the sessions are designed to help incoming House members “forge bipartisan relationships and learn practical skills of lawmaking just one month prior to taking the oath of office.” Since 1972, the program has hosted nearly 700 current and new member of Congress.

“There is nothing adversarial,” Pressley said. “This is about us lifting up the voices, the stories, the struggles, the innovation and the ideas of the people that we represent. So I think it’s a good thing.” (VOA)