Nightly Brief

Your Thursday night briefing from the staff of Courthouse News

Top CNS stories for today including lawmakers and protesters converging at the headquarters of the Federal Communications Commission where the Republican-controlled body voted 3-2 to kill net-neutrality rules; environmentalists were dealt a setback in a battle to ensure that pipelines have proper response plans for a catastrophic oil spill; the Senate on Thursday confirmed its second judge to the 5th Circuit in as many days; California urged a federal judge to block the federal government from cutting off its access to criminal justice grants in retaliation for its becoming a “sanctuary state”; a new study that suggests air pollution may be to blame for increased teenage delinquency, and more.

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Lindsay Chestnut of Baltimore protests near the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), in Washington, Thursday, Dec. 14, 2017. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

1.) In National news, lawmakers and protesters converged Thursday at the headquarters of the Federal Communications Commission where the Republican-controlled body voted 3-2 to kill net-neutrality rules, overturning protections that bar internet service providers from creating fast and slow lanes online.

The Mackinac Bridge between Michigan and Canada.

2.) Environmentalists were dealt a setback Tuesday in a battle to ensure that pipelines have proper response plans for a catastrophic oil spill, when a federal judge ruled that the National Wildlife Federation lacks standing to challenge the U.S. Department of Transportation’s approval process.

James Ho cleared the Senate on a 53-43 vote on Thursday afternoon and will now join Judge Don Willett, whom the Senate confirmed yesterday, on the New Orleans-based 5th Circuit handling appeals from Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas.

3.) The Senate on Thursday confirmed its second judge to the 5th Circuit in as many days, giving President Donald Trump his 12th appointment to a federal appellate court.

President Donald Trump signs an executive order in the Rose Garden of the of the White House in Washington, Thursday, May 4, 2017, asking the IRS to use “maximum enforcement discretion” over the regulation, known as Johnson Amendment, which applies to churches and nonprofits (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

4.) The Freedom From Religion Foundation on Wednesday voluntarily dismissed a lawsuit challenging an executive order signed by President Donald Trump that targeted an IRS rule saying religious organizations and other nonprofits that endorse political candidates risk losing their tax-exempt status.

5.) A binational committee continues to work on delisting another population of grizzly bears despite of an appeals court ruling that threatens to stall the process.

North Carolina State Legislative Office Building.

6.) In Regional news, North Carolina Democrats filed a lawsuit against their Republican colleagues on the state legislature in a bid to restore primary primary elections for statewide and local judgeships that had been scheduled for the spring.

Protesters hold up signs outside a courthouse where a judge was to hear arguments in the first lawsuit challenging President Donald Trump’s executive order to withhold funding from communities that limit cooperation with immigration authorities in San Francisco.(AP Photo/Haven Daley, File)

7.) California on Wednesday urged a federal judge to block the federal government from cutting off its access to criminal justice grants in retaliation for its becoming a “sanctuary state.”

A passenger airliner flies past steam and white smoke emitted from a coal-fired plant.(AP Photo/Andy Wong, File)
8.) From the world of Science comes a new study that suggests tiny, toxic particles in the air that creep into developing brains and cause inflammation that damage the pathways responsible for emotion and decisions may be to blame for increased teenage delinquency.
Marlboro, one of the most well-known cigarette brands.

9.) New research shows that some teens exposed to graphic anti-smoking posters may actually be encouraged to pick up the habit.

The Italian parliament in joint session.
10.) In International news, North Carolina Democrats filed a lawsuit against their Republican colleagues on the state legislature in a bid to restore primary primary elections for statewide and local judgeships that had been scheduled for the spring.
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