News Briefs: Cabinet confirmations, demise of Obamacare, Chambers sentenced for life

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News Briefs for the week of Jan. 8 – Jan. 13

Trump’s Cabinet picks undergo confirmation hearings

Earlier this week, eight of Trump’s picks for his cabinet prepared to sit in front of the U.S. Senate and answer a plethora of questions to defend why they should be allowed to govern. Prior to confirmation hearings, all nominees must undergo extensive background checks and vetting processes. All cabinet-level nominees besides the White House chief of staff require approval from Capitol Hill. Hearings for Attorney General nominee Jeff Sessions, Homeland Security nominee John Kelly, Secretary of State nominee Rex Tillerson, CIA Director nominee Mike Pompeo, Secretary of Transportation nominee Elaine Chao, Secretary of Commerce nominee Wilbur Ross and Security of House and Urban Development nominee Ben Carson occurred early this week, from Jan. 10-12. Secretary of Education nominee Betsy DeVos, Secretary of Labor Andy Puzder and U.N. Ambassador nominee Nikki Haley will sit for their hearings next week. (ABC)

Senate begins to repeal ObamaCare

On Thursday, Republicans in the Senate approved a budget resolution measure which will start the process of repealing the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as ObamaCare. The Act, instituted in 2010, expanded Medicaid and Medicare, set up the Health Insurance Marketplace and expanded requirements of employers to provide health insurance to their employees, among various other implementations. The budget resolution measure passed with 51-48 votes. There are no current bills ready to replace nation-wide healthcare, but according to TheWeek.com, legislature is in the works and legislators have hope there will be a first round of bills by Jan. 27. The House will vote on the budget resolution measure later this afternoon. Both sides will need at least 60 votes to replace ObamaCare with a different health initiative. (The Week)

Woman sentenced for life due to deadly crash at Oklahoma State University

At the 2015 homecoming parade for Oklahoma State University, Adacia Chambers drove her car into a group of spectators, killing four people and injuring dozens. When pretrial talks first began after the incident, Chamber’s attorneys said she had a mental illness and was having an episode during the time of the crash, and contested mental illness to evade trial. However, a judge deemed Chambers fit to stand trial. Chambers is sentenced to life plus 10 years in prison after pleading no contest with a plea deal last Tuesday. (NewsOK)

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