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House Sets Risky Health Care Vote After Trump Demands It

In a gamble with monumental political stakes, Republicans set course for a climactic House vote on their health care overhaul after President Donald Trump claimed he was finished negotiating with GOP holdouts and determined to pursue the rest of his agenda, win or lose.

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House Approves Employee Insurance Overhaul

Mar 24, 2017

In an issue that split Republicans and Democrats, the House on Thursday approved a bill that would revamp the health-insurance program for state employees.

Judy Gallagher / Flickr

Wildlife officials say endangered Key deer no longer need anti-parasite medication to fight off flesh-eating screwworms.

In a gamble with monumental political stakes, Republicans set course for a climactic House vote on their health care overhaul after President Donald Trump claimed he was finished negotiating with GOP holdouts and determined to pursue the rest of his agenda, win or lose.

Amy Green / WMFE

Government scientists are seeing a surprising surge in phosphorus in North America’s lakes and streams.

That’s the nutrient responsible for harmful algae blooms like those plaguing Florida’s Indian River Lagoon and other waterways.

Orlando Rally Held Against Obamacare Replacement Bill

Mar 24, 2017
WMFE

With the vote looming in the House on the American Health Care Act, about a dozen rallied against it outside of Senator Marco Rubio’s Orlando office Thursday.

Both prescription and illegal opioids are driving a national spike in overdose deaths. According to the Centers for Disease Control, they were involved in more than 33,000 deaths in 2015. Florida has seen a dramatic increase in opioid-driven overdoses, up more than 20 percent.  Yet, lawmakers are still grappling with how to address the issue.

A number of NRA-backed bills are now headed to the House floor. That includes a bill making changes to Florida’s Stand Your Ground law and another allowing guns on private school property.

Self-medicating stations meant to protect the endangered Key deer from screwworm have already been removed and federal wildlife managers plan to stop medicating entirely on April 10 — assuming no new cases of the deadly parasite are found.

Screwworm was first confirmed in the Keys Sept. 30 and killed 135 Key deer, an endangered species that lives nowhere else in the world. Before the outbreak, the population was estimated at 800 to 1,000 animals.

Throughout the campaign, President Trump billed himself as a master negotiator who would make the "best deals" for the American people.

In a bid to improve the health insurance purchasing clout of small businesses, Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives dusted off a piece of controversial legislation more than a decade old and passed it this week as part of their effort to remake the market after they throw out the Affordable Care Act.

The bill, the Small Business Health Fairness Act of 2017, had the support of 232 Republicans and 4 Democrats. It now heads to the Senate, where its fate is uncertain, experts say.

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