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runetic's MyC-SPAN

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    Women for Hillary Campaign Endorsement Announcement

    Thirteen of the 14 female Democratic senators announced their endorsement of 2016 presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. They explained why they were supporting her presidential bid, and afterward, the former Secretary of State Clinton delivered remarks supporters.

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    Senator Feinstein on Combating the Islamic State

    Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) talked about combating ISIL.*

    This was a brief portion of her remote interview from San Francisco with John Dickerson on CBS’s “Face the Nation.”

    *The Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), or the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS or DAISH/DAESH in Arabic), is a militant group that has called itself the Islamic State.

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    Senate Democrats on Syrian Refugees

    Senate Democrats spoke to reporters about the influx of Syrian refugees seeking asylum in the U.S., but said that the program that should be scrutinized following the Paris terrorist attacks was the visa waiver program, not the refugee program. Senator Dianne Feinstein outlined some of the proposals in her bill to strengthening visa waiver program. She also argued for ensuring that terrorists could not obtain guns here in the U.S.

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    Highway and Mass Transit Funding

    House and Senate conferees made opening statements in a meeting to negotiate a long-term highway and mass transit funding bill. House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chair Bill Shuster (R-PA) said the conference committee planed to finalize its report by November 30, 2015.

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    Climate Change and Environmental Policy

    Todd Stern testified at a hearing on the Obama administration’s environmental policies and goals at the U.N. Climate Change Conference in Paris. Other topics addressed included the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan to reduce carbon pollution, the U.S.-China climate agreement and Green Climate Fund, which helps developing countries address climate change.

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    Sentencing Laws and the Prison System

    Justice Department officials and advocates testified at a hearing on legislation aimed at changing mandatory minimum prison sentences for certain drug offenders. Witnesses included Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates, who said she supports the legislation. She outlined in her testimony why the existing mechanisms were not working.

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    Veterans Health Legislation

    Veterans Affairs Department officials and advocates testified at hearing on pending health and benefits legislation. Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), and Joe Donnelly (D-IN) testified on their respective legislative proposals. During the hearing, the committee approved the nomination of former U.S. Representative Michael Michaud to be assistant secretary of Labor for Veterans' Employment and Training.

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    Intelligence and Cybersecurity Issues

    National Security Agency (NSA) Director Michael Rogers testified on the challenges his agency faces, including retention of key personnel, securing the budget, optimization within the NSA, and the need for new legislation that would benefit the organization. He answered questions from the committee on issues that included massive data breaches at Sony Pictures, U.S. efforts to thwart current terrorist threats, and what would ensure the NSA to be more proactive as opposed to reactive.

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    Food Safety

    Dr. Stephen Ostroff was one of three Food and Drug Administration officials who testified at a hearing on food safety. Dr. Ostroff also talked about the budget and appropriations process and how proper funding is crucial to food safety.

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    EPA Toxic River Spill

    Administrator Gina McCarthy testified at a Senate Environment and Public Works Committee hearing at hearing on the toxic river spill caused by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and one of its contractors near the shuttered Gold King Mine in Silverton, Colorado. The rupture released 3 million gallons of waste water from the mine into the Animas River and contained lead, arsenic, and cadmium. She talked about the EPA’s ongoing efforts to investigate the cause of the spill, and addressed its detrimental impact on the region.

    Senators from Colorado and New Mexico spoke before Administrator McCarthy to explain the impact of the spill on their home states. Administrator McCarthy talked about the EPA’s ongoing efforts to investigate the cause of the spill, and addressed its detrimental impact on the region.