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FILE - Forza Italia leader Silvio Berlusconi passes past the Government and Presidency seat during a confidence vote at the Senate, in Rome, Wednesday, Oct. 2, 2013. Just in time to celebrate his 86th birthday, Italy’s former premier Silvio Berlusconi is making his return to Italy's parliament, winning a seat in the Senate nearly a decade after being banned from public office over a tax fraud conviction. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia, File)
Women seeking abortions across Arizona were forced to find alternatives beyond the state’s borders after a court ruling last week cleared the way for prosecutors to charge doctors and others who help a woman end a pregnancy unless her life is in danger. The state’s major abortion providers immediately halted procedures and canceled appointments. Providers in neighboring states, already seeing an increase in traffic from other conservative states that have banned abortion, were preparing to treat some of the 13,000 Arizona patients who get an abortion each year.
Cuba is holding a rare referendum on an unusually contentious law — a government-backed code that would allow same-sex couples to marry and adopt. It also outlines the rights of children and grandparents and tries to protect against gender violence. The code of more than 400 articles has been questioned by many members of the island’s increasingly vocal evangelical community. President Miguel Díaz-Canel has promoted the law but acknowledged Sunday that “it still has issues that our society as a whole does not understand,.”
Since Oregon residents voted in 2020 to decriminalize hard drugs and dedicate hundreds of millions of dollars to treatment, few people have requested the services and the state has been slow to channel the funds. Oregon still has among the highest addiction rates in the country. Fatal overdoses have increased almost 20% over the previous year, with over a thousand dead. Steve Allen, behavioral health director of the Oregon Health Authority, acknowledges that Oregon’s experiment has had a rocky start. But he says a milestone has been reached, with more than $302 million being sent to facilities across the state to help people get off drugs.
Rape crisis centers in Texas say their caseloads remain high a year after a new abortion law that made no exceptions for rape victims went into effect. Republican Gov. Greg Abbott defended the law in September 2021 by saying that Texas would get to work eliminating rapes. But the constant caseloads in Texas are one example illustrating how Republicans have struggled to defend zero-exception abortion bans that are unpopular in public polling and caused uproar in high-profile cases. The absence of exceptions has caused divisions among Republicans, including in West Virginia, where a new law signed this month allows rape and incest victims to obtain abortions at up to eight weeks of pregnancy but only if they report to law enforcement first.
South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem is under investigation for using a state-owned airplane to fly to political events and bring family members with her on trips. But the decision on whether to prosecute the Republican governor likely hinges on how a county prosecutor interprets an untested law that was passed by voters in 2006. State law allows the aircraft only to be used “in the conduct of state business.” But Noem attended events hosted by political organizations. State plane logs also show that Noem often had family members join her on in-state flights in 2019. It blurred the lines between official travel and attending family events, including her son’s prom and her daughter’s wedding.
Today in History
Today in History
Arizona Republican gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake is misrepresenting her opponent's legislative record on education in a video being widely shared on social media. In the video, set to dramatic music and featuring patriotic visuals, Lake falsely suggests that Democratic candidate Katie Hobbs wanted to ban the Pledge of Allegiance in schools and to teach kindergartners about sex, misrepresenting Hobbs' voting record and the content of various Arizona education bills. Hobbs did not vote to block documents such as the Pledge of Allegiance from schools, and her support for a bill for K-12 sex education specified that the sex education be age-appropriate.
An Indiana judge has blocked the state’s abortion ban from being enforced, putting the new law on hold as abortion clinic operators argue that it violates the state constitution. Owen County Judge Kelsey Hanlon issued a preliminary injunction Thursday against the ban that took effect one week ago. The injunction was sought by abortion clinic operators who argued in a lawsuit that the state constitution protects access to the medical procedure. The judge wrote “there is reasonable likelihood that this significant restriction of personal autonomy offends the liberty guarantees of the Indiana Constitution” and that the clinics will prevail in the lawsuit.