Florida lawmakers denied a motion to bring an assault weapons ban to a vote Tuesday, less than a week after 17 people were killed at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, by a teenager armed with a semiautomatic rifle. The effort failed to pass Florida's House by a 71-36 margin, The Associated Press reports.
The proposed assault weapons ban had previously been stalled in committee, but Democratic state Rep. Kionne McGhee pushed the state legislature to consider allowing the bill to be considered anyway. Florida's Spectrum News 13 said McGhee's motion was thwarted by "almost every Republican voting no."
Florida's state Senate, however, was able to make progress Tuesday on some legislation to address the safety of students. The Associated Press reported that the state's Senate Education Committee was able to attach an amendment "to put law enforcement officers in every school in the state" to an education reform bill that is now in consideration. Kelly O'Meara Morales
Almost immediately after President Trump signed an executive order Thursday protecting "religious liberty," the American Civil Liberties Union announced it will be filing a lawsuit fighting the order. In a statement, ACLU Executive Director Anthony Romero deemed Trump's order — which promises to "protect and vigorously promote religious liberty" — a "broadside to the country's longstanding commitment to the separation of church and state."
"President Trump's efforts to promote religious freedom are thinly-veiled efforts to unleash his conservative religious base into the political arena while also using religion to discriminate," Romero wrote in the statement. "It's a dual dose of pandering to a base and denying reproductive care. We will see Trump in court, again." The ACLU previously sued over Trump's immigration executive order, which temporarily blocked people from multiple predominantly Muslim countries from entering the U.S.
Though Trump's order will not roll back anti-LGBT discrimination rules as was proposed in a draft, it does offer "regulatory relief" for faith-based employers mandated to offer contraception coverage in health-care plans. It also proposes reducing the "burden" of the Johnson Amendment, which prohibits tax-exempt churches and organizations from actively supporting political candidates. Becca Stanek
Ronda Rousey needed just 14 seconds on Saturday night to defend her UFC bantamweight title against Cat Zingano, ESPN reports.
It was Rousey's (11-0) fifth UFC title defense; her last three have lasted just 66 seconds, 16 seconds, and now 14 seconds — the latter being the fastest finish of her career thus far and a UFC record for fastest ever in a title fight.
Rousey submitted Zingano with a straight armlock after Zingano rushed Rousey on the opening bell; Zingano quickly tapped out of the hold. Sarah Eberspacher
Marionville, Mo., Mayor Dan Clevenger is mayor no more. Clevenger resigned Monday, one week after he voiced support for Frazier Glenn Miller, the man who allegedly murdered three people at Kansas Jewish centers earlier this month.
After the shooting, Clevenger told a local news station he "kind of agreed with [Miller] on some things," adding "but I don't like to express that too much." Unfortunately for him, he did express that too much. Following his admission, reporters dug up some of Clevenger's past warnings about the "Jew-run, government-backed banking industry," the "Jew-run medical industry," and so on. When confronted, Clevenger doubled down on his anti-Semitic musings.
The town's aldermen voted during a raucous public meeting on Monday to begin impeachment proceedings, prompting Clevenger to jump ship. Clevenger previously said he would not resign, and when asked why he changed his mind, "he silently motioned to the residents who had come to the meeting," according to the Springfield News-Leader. Jon Terbush
Nowadays, it seems like there's a political action committee for everything. There's a PAC for legalizing marijuana, a super PAC for John Bolton's non-existent presidential campaign, and, until Thursday, there was a PAC with the questionable name "Boats 'N Hoes."
Don't let the moniker fool you, though. The group had nothing to do with the nouns in its name, but was rather an organization founded by a GOP consultant to aid the local party, as the Texas Tribune notes.
Founder Shaun Nowacki filed paperwork April 1 with the Texas Ethics Commission to create the group, which took its name from the comedy Step Brothers. (It's a reference to a music video shot by Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly's fictional entertainment business.) Yet somehow Nowacki didn't anticipate the predictable backlash that erupted Wednesday over the offensive name, which prompted him to pull the plug on the group after a mere two-week existence.
Really, shouldn't he have seen that coming? --Jon Terbush