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U.S Vice President’s new appointment that affects your voting rights

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The Biden administration has moved to appoint Vice President Kamala Harris as the head of protecting voter rights.

The appointment follows Texan Republicans moving to establish increased voter restrictions for U-S general elections after Biden’s victory in 2021.

Progressive voter rights groups have applauded the move.

Wendy Weiser from the U-S Democracy Centre says Harris is “the right person given how much of a priority this is and how urgent these problems are.”

In today’s briefing, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said the president sees Harris as someone who can lead challenging initiatives.

Global Politics

Putin’s plan to send hackers to the U.S

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Russian President Vladamir Putin says he is prepared to extradite hackers to the US, as long as it’s on a reciprocal basis.

According to Russia’s state-run news agency, both nations must “assume equal commitments” when it comes to cybercriminals.

Putin says Russia will extradite these individuals, but only if the other side agrees to the same… and will also extradite corresponding criminals to the Russian Federation.”

Putin’s comments come just days before his planned meeting with U.S President Joe Biden in Geneva.

The White House says “we have raised the issue of ransomware attacks with a number of countries AND that includes Russia… this activity will be a topic when the two presidents meet”.

Meanwhile, Secretary of State Antony Blinken says Biden will seek a more stable and reliable relationship with Russia.

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Global Politics

NEW ERA: Israel new power play to bring bold shake-up

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Israel’s parliament has sworn in Naftali Bennet as the country’s newest prime minister, bringing an end to Benjamin Netanyahu’s 12-year reign.

In what is the narrowest of margins, Bennet won the confidence movement with 60 votes to 59 votes.

Israel has been in a game of political deadlock for the past several years, and Bennet’s victory follows four elections in the space of two years.

Bennet says “I am proud of the ability to sit together with people with very different views from my own, twice in history, we have lost our national home precisely because the leaders of the generation were not able to sit with one and another and compromise.”

Welcomed change of direction

Bennet’s incoming coalition is made up of eight separate political parties and is considered the most diverse leadership group Israel has ever seen.

Ticker's resident political commentator Bruce Wolpe says this new Government will have a principle focus on Iran.

“The focus on Israeli government will principally be Iran,”

Wolpe told ticker news
BRUCE WOLPE ON TICKER NEWS

Wolpe continues on to say that “a source of contention” will surround the threat Iran poses to Israel and opposing the negotiated deal presented by President Biden.

“I think there is also going to be focus on changes in the Israeli society and the direction it takes at home,” Wolpe says.

“Just given the turmoil in the past two years… this will unleash Israel’s economic power.”

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Global Politics

G7 SUMMIT: Biden aces exam with flying colours

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President Joe Biden accomplished what he wanted to do in his first outing as America’s leader on the world stage:  to demonstrate that America is back and that the United States is again the principal leader of Western democracies.  

Biden was warmly welcomed, and all the heads of government – from G7 host Boris Johnson to Japan’s Prime Minister Suga – were clearly in concert and at ease with Biden’s embrace of a renewed agenda to make the world healthier, safer, more secure and more prosperous.

In his press conference at the conclusion of the meeting, Biden said:

“Over the past few weeks, the nations of the G7 have affirmed that democratic values that underpin everything we hope to achieve in our shared future, that we’re committed to put them to work: One, delivering vaccines and ending the pandemic. Two, driving substantial, inclusive economic recovery around the world. Three, in fueling infrastructure development in places that most badly need it. And four, in fighting climate change.”

Biden called out the threats and challenges posed by both Russia and China.  In his upcoming meeting with Vladimir Putin, Biden will not be intimidated by Russian provocation. Where the US and Russia can work constructively together, they will.  Where they face divergent interests, those will be contested. And with respect to China, Biden is determined that the Western allies be competitive with China on global infrastructure and meet China’s challenges on and actions on human rights and forced labour – Xinjiang and Hong Kong were explicitly mentioned – and the ongoing tensions in the South China Sea.

Biden believed it was essential to have in place these extensive consultations and the convergence on views that emerged before seeing Putin this week.  This process will continue at NATO tomorrow. But it has also served as a predicate for a meeting with China’s President Xi, and we can now expect movement towards a Biden-Xi summit later this year.  Biden is intent to have in hand – and to use – the leverage of this alignment for the US with all the Western leaders in his discussions with Russia and China.

Behind the smiles and arm-in-arm walks Biden enjoyed with his colleagues, there remain significant doubts about how enduring America’s renewal as the indispensable Western leader will be.  The G7 and NATO leaders know that the forces of Trump and Trumpism – its isolationism, nativism, and nationalism – remain potent, and that America’s democracy is under continuous pressure.  

Biden made the most of the moment, “I noticed there was a lot of coverage of my individual comments made by my colleagues about how we were all getting along together. But the truth of the matter is: We did. It wasn’t — I felt it wasn’t about me, but it was about America. I felt a genuine sense of enthusiasm that America was back at the table and fully, fully engaged.”

For the balance if his presidency, this is Biden’s road.

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