Government & Politics

House passes bill changing Medicare fee formula

The House overwhelmingly approves sweeping changes to the Medicare system. The measure would establish a new formula for paying doctors and end a problem that has bedeviled the nation’s health care system for more than a decade. It would also increase premiums for some higher income beneficiaries and extend a popular health insurance program for children.

Government & Politics

Bowe Bergdahl describes torture, attempts to escape Taliban

Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl says he was tortured repeatedly in the five years he was held captive by the Taliban: beaten with a copper cable, chained spread-eagle to a bed, and threatened with execution after trying to escape. Bergdahl, 28, described this harsh treatment in Afghanistan in a note his lawyer released Thursday after sharing it with the Army in an attempt to avert a court martial.

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The Buzz

In lawsuit, ACLU says the First Amendment protects anonymous political speech

The Missouri office of the American Civil Liberties Union is representing a businessman in Ferguson who wants to publish material about the city’s upcoming municipal elections. Missouri law says campaign communications must include the name and address of the sponsor. But the businessman says he’s afraid of retribution if he identifies himself, so he wants to provide the material anonymously.

The Buzz

Missouri Legislative Black Caucus calls for General Assembly to act on Ferguson

Rep. Brandon Ellington, a Kansas City Democrat and chairman of the Black Caucus, pointed to a handful of bills that he said are languishing in House committees. Failure to act, Ellington said, will suggest Missouri is “racist and we don’t care.” House Speaker John Diehl, a St. Louis County Republican, said nearly all the bills have been referred to committee.

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