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Missing Teen Jayme Closs Found Alive

Missing Teen Jayme Closs Found Alive
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  • As the U.S. Senate prepared to cast votes for the first time on Thursday to end the partial government shutdown which began before Christmas, the two parties remained defiantly at odds in Congress over how best to resolve the impasse over the President’s call to fund a wall along the Mexican border, as lawmakers predicted the two plans being voted on in the Senate would both fail to get the necessary 60 votes to advance. “Open up the government, and then let’s talk,” said Senate Democratic Leader Charles Schumer, summing up the main hurdle between the two parties after almost five weeks, as Democrats won’t negotiate until the government is fully funded, while Republicans refuse to fund shuttered agencies until they get a deal on border security. “It’s just pure politics,” said brand new Sen. Rick Scott (R-FL), who accused Democratic leaders of being in favor of doing nothing on border security. Meanwhile, back home, the stories were piling up of federal workers who were in financial difficulty, along with businesses who were feeling the pinch of the shutdown. Hey @realDonaldTrump, we are an American-owned company and we want to distribute a new beer, but the shutdown includes the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau… so we currently can't move forward. Please help. The people want the beer. #beer2020 — Prairie Artisan Ales (@prairieales) January 7, 2019 The first vote the Senate will take Thursday is on a bill which would fund all operations of the federal government, and include the immigration changes proposed on Saturday by President Donald Trump. “I think the President’s plan is a reasonable one,” said Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH). “And that’s why I plan to support it.” “You don’t have to agree on everything in it – but he did put something new on the table,” said Rep. Tom Cole (R-OK), as Republicans decried another round of votes in the House on plans from Democrats to fund the government. “It’s one more pointless exercise,” Cole said – the House will vote Thursday on one more plan to fund the government, this time through February 28; that will make 10 funding bills sent to the Senate. “Ten times now the House of Representatives has done our job and voted, without preconditions, to end the shutdown and reopen the government,” said Rep. Jim McGovern (D-MA). The latest vote came as hundreds of federal workers who have been furloughed from their jobs rallied in Senate office buildings on Wednesday, as they homemade signs written on paper plates. “Feed my family,” read one. “ENOUGH,” said another. “Do your job,” was one more. The one wildcard on Thursday is on the second vote which Senators will take, on a Democratic plan which combines money for disaster aid with funding for the government through February 8 – some Democrats hoped that a number of GOP Senators would vote for that plan, possibly seeing it as a way to end the deadlock, and pay federal employees who haven’t seen a check since late December. “We always hold out hope,” said Rep. Val Demings (D-FL), as the House and Senate seemed ready to go home on Thursday afternoon without any resolution to the border funding impasse, likely sending it into a sixth week, by far the longest shutdown ever for the federal government. If that does happen, 800,000 federal workers would miss a second paycheck on Friday, as the Senate is not expected to get 60 votes for either of the two plans being voted on Thursday afternoon.
  • The website Glassdoor.com has ranked the 50 best jobs in America, and it's not JUST about money, although salary is definitely one factor. The other two criteria are job satisfaction and the number of open jobs in each category. Jobs in the IT and medical fields dominate the list. We counted 14 of the 50 that are computer related. 8 are in the medical field. The top 3 jobs on the list are Data Engineer, Nursing Manager, and Marketing Manager. In fact, the word 'manager' shows up 23 times, so you might want to try to get some management experience along the way in your career. You can see the full list here.
  • Oklahoma Kevin Stitt stopped by Broken Arrow High School Wednesday morning to announce that the 2018 Oklahoma Teacher of the Year is a finalist for 2019 National Teacher of the Year. Donna Gradel is a science teacher. Under Gradel’s instruction, Broken Arrow students designed a way for Kenyan orphans to produce fish food for one-twelfth the current cost. “I constantly encourage them to dream big and make a difference in the world,” Gradel said. “They know our classroom is a safe, caring place to imagine and not be afraid to fail.” One of the four finalists will be named the 2019 National Teacher of the Year this spring by a national selection committee.  The winner will spend the next year traveling the country as an ambassador for education and an advocate for all teachers and students.  
  • Moments after announcing that the Oklahoma Teacher of the Year is one of four finalists to become National Teacher of the Year, Governor Kevin Stitt let it slip that he has plans to combine the cabinet positions of Secretary of State and Secretary of Education into one post. The man who will fill that post, Gov. Stitt told KRMG, is current Secretary of State Michael Rogers, a former Broken Arrow Representative who was appointed to his current position last November. Stitt was asked by a reporter how he plans to deal with the Oklahoma Department of Education under his administration, since it has its own elected official - State Superintendent of Public Education Joy Hofmeister. “It’s a little different of an agency since it’s directly elected by the people, and so my idea is just to spend a lot of time with her (Hofmeister), ask her what she needs, continue to meet with the teachers myself on the ground, see what they need, give her the resources that they need. “My Secretary of State is also my Secretary of State and Education, uh so we haven’t released that yet - I guess I released that just now,” Stitt said Wednesday. He went on to say “it was so important to me not have kind of another barrier between having a Secretary of Education, so that’s why I have my Secretary of State and Education, so we can just bring Joy Hofmeister in close, just to give her the tools that she needs.” Thursday, the Governor’s expected to sign his first executive orders, which sources in his office tell us will deal with his proposed realignment of state agencies. 
  • In an escalating personal confrontation, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told President Donald Trump on Wednesday that he would not be allowed to give his scheduled State of the Union Address to a Joint Session of Congress until a partial government shutdown has ended, an option that the President said would be ‘very sad’ for the nation. “I look forward to welcoming you to the House on a mutually agreeable date for this address when government has been opened,” the Speaker wrote in a letter to the President, as she said the House would not approve a resolution authorizing a speech by Mr. Trump in the House chamber at this time. Pelosi’s response came several hours after the President had sent his own letter to the Speaker, making clear that he planned to show up to speak to lawmakers on January 29. “It would be so very sad our Country if the State of the Union were not delivered on time, on schedule, and very importantly, on location!” the President wrote. BREAKING: Speaker Nancy Pelosi says the US House will not pass a resolution for the State of the Union until the government is reopened https://t.co/U2x43V9U1S pic.twitter.com/DXl4y2rTof — CNN International (@cnni) January 23, 2019 President Trump’s letter to Speaker Pelosi on the State of the Union pic.twitter.com/B4QN9hDJnv — Sarah Sanders (@PressSec) January 23, 2019 The dueling letters came amid the increasingly bitter debate over the longest government funding lapse in modern history, which seems likely to block paychecks again on Friday for some 800,000 federal workers. “I’m not surprised,” the President said during a White House photo opportunity when asked about the Speaker’s response. “It’s really a shame what’s happening with the Democrats. They’ve become radicalized.” In the halls of Congress, GOP lawmakers saw no reason why the President shouldn’t be allowed to speak to the nation from the House chamber. “He asked me yesterday what I thought about that,” said Sen. Rick Scott (R-FL). “I think he ought to come, I think he ought to give the State of the Union.” Democrats saw something different. “My instinct is that this exchange of letters is an intentional distraction from the fact that people are about to miss their second paycheck and the economy is slowing down,” said Sen. Brian Schatz (D-HI). The first missed paycheck for most federal workers was on January 11; the next one will be this Friday.