Republicans Oppose Kristen Clarke for Top Civil Rights Job at DOJ in Latest Attack on Voting Rights

Republican senators in Washington are attempting to block Kristen Clarke, a prominent voting rights advocate, from a top Justice Department position. The Senate Judiciary Committee has deadlocked on an 11-11 vote on whether to move Clarke’s nomination for assistant attorney general of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division to the Senate floor for a full vote. If she wins the vote, Clarke, who has served as the head of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law and is a longtime champion of voting rights, a defender against hate and violent extremism, would be the first Black woman to hold the position. Ben Jealous, president of People for…

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Weaponizing Trump’s Big Lie: Ari Berman on GOP’s War on Democracy & Voting Rights

This year Democracy Now! is celebrating our 25th anniversary—that's 25 years of bringing you fearless, independent reporting. Since our very first broadcast in 1996, Democracy Now! has refused to take government or corporate funding, because nothing is more important to us than our editorial independence. But that means we rely on you, our audience, for support. Please donate today in honor of our 25th anniversary and help us stay on air for another 25 years. We can't do our work without you. Right now, a generous donor will even DOUBLE your gift, which means it’ll go twice as far! This is a challenging time for us all, but…

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“Monumental Moment”: U.S. Backs Waiving COVID Vaccine Patent Rights After Months of Blocking Talks

This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.AMY GOODMAN: In what the World Health Organization is describing as a “monumental moment,” the Biden administration has announced it now supports temporarily waiving the intellectual property rights for COVID vaccines. India and South Africa first proposed the waiver in October, but the United States and other wealthy nations blocked the World Trade Organization from even opening negotiations on the proposal. Supporters of the waiver say it critically needed to gear up the production level of vaccines for the Global South as the pandemic rapidly spreads in India, Latin America and other areas where few vaccines…

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“A Threshold Crossed”: Israel Is Guilty of Apartheid, Human Rights Watch Says for First Time

This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.AMY GOODMAN: After weeks of speculation, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has postponed next month’s parliamentary elections, which would have been held for the first time in 15 years in the Occupied Territories. Abbas said the delay was caused by Israel’s refusal to promise that thousands of Palestinians living in Israeli-occupied areas of Jerusalem could vote in the election. The decision comes at a time when a rift is growing within the Fatah party. Well, earlier this week, Human Rights Watch released a major report saying for the first time that Israel is committing crimes of apartheid…

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Human Rights Watch says Israel’s actions against Palestinians are crimes of apartheid

Human Rights Watch (HRW) has released a report on 27 April naming Israeli policies against Palestinians crimes of apartheid and persecution. The advocacy group’s 213 page report compares policy and practices in Israel and occupied territories towards Palestinians and Jewish Israeli people. HRW concluded that there is “an overarching Israeli government policy to maintain the domination by Jewish Israelis over Palestinians”. It also detailed evidence of “grave abuses” against Palestinians. Kenneth Roth, HRW executive director, said: Prominent voices have warned for years that apartheid lurks just around the corner if the trajectory of Israel’s rule over Palestinians does not change. This detailed study shows that Israeli authorities have already…

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Race report ‘attempts to normalise white supremacy’ – UN human rights experts

A controversial report into racial disparities attempts to “normalise white supremacy” and the Government should reject its findings, human rights experts from the UN have warned. The UN Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent said it “categorically rejects and condemns” the findings of the Commission on Race and Ethnic Disparities (Cred). The Government-commissioned report said racism is a “real force” but that Britain is no longer a country where the “system is deliberately rigged against ethnic minorities”. Its chairman said it had found no evidence of “institutional racism”, and the report criticised the way the term has been applied, saying it should not be used as a…

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GOP Smears DOJ Civil Rights Pick Kristen Clarke in Latest Attack on Voting Rights & Racial Justice

We look at President Biden’s nomination of Kristen Clarke to become the first Black woman to lead the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division and the conservative smear campaign against the veteran civil rights lawyer. The far-right Fox News host Tucker Carlson has devoted at least five segments to attacking Clarke’s nomination, including baseless accusations of anti-Semitism. Ben Jealous, president of People for the American Way and former president of the NAACP, says “the right-wing attack machine” springs into action whenever Black nominees are up for confirmation. “They make sport, quite frankly, of trying to defame their character, destroy their reputation, and they see women of color as being…

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World’s Poorest Nations Face Setback as India Suspends Vaccine Exports Amid Fight over Patent Rights

This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.AMY GOODMAN: We begin today’s show with the urgent push to ensure equal access to COVID-19 vaccines for all nations, rich and poor, and growing calls for Big Pharma to waive their patent rights. As Christians around the world marked Easter Sunday, Italy moved up midnight Masses to meet a 10 p.m. curfew amidst a spike in COVID cases. And Pope Francis used his Easter Mass address at St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican to warn against vaccine nationalism. POPE FRANCIS: [translated] In the spirit of an internationalism of vaccines, I urge the entire international community…

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US conservative lawmakers are taking aim at trans rights

Arkansas lawmakers have passed “the single most extreme anti-trans law” amid a growing number of proposals to limit transgender rights in the US. The bill bans transgender young people from accessing gender-affirming care such as hormones and puberty blockers. The republican governor of Arkansas now decides whether the bill is signed into law as transgender rights campaigners and youth health and welfare groups criticise the bill’s passage. Rumba Yambú, director of Arkansas trans group Intransitive, said: It’s one of the worst bills that they could have created. They added: It’s just expected that if this passes, it will cost lives, and they don’t seem to care about that.…

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“Shameful”: Amid Border Emergency, Immigrant Rights Advocates Urge Biden to Stop Detaining Children

This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.AMY GOODMAN: Photos released Monday show migrant children crowded into holding areas separated by plastic sheeting at a temporary processing center near the U.S.-Mexico border in Donna, Texas. There is no social distancing in effect as the children huddle on plastic mattresses, covered with foil sheets. The photos were shared by Democratic Congressman Henry Cuellar of Texas with the news site Axios. Cuellar said eight pods that were meant to house 260 children were packed beyond capacity, with one pod housing over 400 boys. He said Customs and Border Patrol agents were, quote, “not equipped to…

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