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FPL Daily News Reel: May 8, 2012

May 8, 2012, 11:51 am | Posted by Nick Sementelli

The FPL News Reel is a daily round-up of the top faith and politics stories in the news. You can sign up for the email version of the News Reel here, subscribe to the RSS feed here, and follow it on twitter at @FPLNewsreel.

House Bill Offers Aid Cuts to Save Military Spending
By Jonathan Weisman — New York Times
The Republican-led House this week will lay bare the choice between social programs and Pentagon spending in an age of austerity when it takes up legislation to slice $261 billion from food stamps, Medicaid, social services and other programs for struggling Americans over the next decade to stave off more than $50 billion in military spending cuts scheduled to take effect next year.

GOP: Shield Pentagon, cut poverty programs
By David Rogers — Politico
Setting the stage for an emotional floor fight Thursday, House Republicans pushed ahead Monday evening with plans to protect increased defense spending without raising taxes, largely by cutting more from domestic programs, including aid to the poor.

Austerity as a bridge to nowhere
By Eugene Robinson — Washington Post, Opinion
It is obvious that deficits, debt loads and entitlement spending have to be brought under control — but equally obvious that the necessary adjustments should be made when the economy is going great guns, not when it’s gasping for air.

Desmond Tutu: ‘We need to be able to listen’
By Desmond Tutu — Washington Post, On Faith
“Because we live in a pluralistic, global world we need to be able to listen to other viewpoints, place ourselves in the shoes of others, and respond fairly, magnanimously and pragmatically. I am not speaking theoretically, but practically. These are concepts that apply between nations and regions, but equally in communities and among neighbors.”

Conservative Catholics blast upcoming appearance by HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius at Georgetown University
By David Gibson — Religion News Service
The flagship Jesuit university has announced that Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, a Catholic who has angered conservatives and bishops for overseeing the Obama administration’s contraception insurance mandate and other controversial policies, will address the policy institute’s graduating class at commencement on May 18.

Liberals Steer Outside Money to Grass-Roots Organizing
By Nicholas Confessore — New York Times
…in interviews, donors and strategists involved in the effort said they also did not believe they could match advertising spending by leading conservative groups like American Crossroads and Americans for Prosperity, and instead wanted to exploit what they see as the Democrats’ advantage in grass-roots organizing.

Alabama state senators could vote today on immigration law revisions
By Kim Chandler — Birmingham News
…legislative leaders and lawyers met for more than 11 hours last week discussing how much to change various sections of Alabama’s law — including the “reasonable suspicion” section that would allow police officers to question and detain suspected illegal immigrants.

Amendment 1 vote in NC could ban gay marriage
By Associated Press
The national debate over gay marriage turns its attention South on Tuesday, as North Carolina could be on the verge of becoming the next state to pass a constitutional amendment defining marriage as solely between a man and a woman.

Biden comments on same-sex marriage expose internal White House divisions
By Peter Wallsten and Dan Eggen — Washington Post
As more top officials in his administration speak out in favor of same-sex marriage, Obama is facing increasing pressure to take sides in one of the most emotional and polarizing social policy debates of the modern era.

No guarantee Colorado civil unions bill will get a final vote
By Lynne Bartels — Denver Post
Today is D-Day for a civil unions bill that has turned the waning days of the legislative session into a dramatic roller-coaster ride for social conservatives determined to stop it and champions who believe history is on their side.

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