Political News from Yahoo

US seeks swift deal with France on SNCF's Nazi past

The US State Department Wednesday said it hoped to be able to reach a deal quickly with France to compensate victims of French rail firm SNCF for the deportation of Jews in World War II. Spokeswoman Jen Psaki confirmed the United States and France were in talks on "compensation for victims of deportations by rail from France to Nazi labor and death camps as well as for victims' families." But she hit out at state assemblies such as Maryland and New York which she said had "begun to pose a serious obstacle to achieving this goal." During the occupation of France by Germany and the so-called Vichy regime, SNCF deported some 76,000 Jews to concentration camps in freight cars between 1942 and 1944.

Ex-Christie aides can withhold 'Bridgegate' papers: New Jersey judge

Two former top aides to New Jersey Governor Chris Christie do not have to turn over documents subpoenaed by a state legislative committee investigating a traffic scandal, a New Jersey Superior Court judge ruled on Wednesday. Attorneys for Bill Stepien, Christie's former campaign manager, and Bridget Kelly, his former deputy chief of staff, had argued that producing e-mails and other documents related to the September 2013 lane closures at the George Washington Bridge would violate their clients' constitutional protection against self-incrimination and unreasonable search and seizure. Subpoenas were issued to Kelly and Stepien in January by members of the Democrat-controlled state legislature investigating the lane closings, and Mercer County Superior Court Judge Mary Jacobson had ordered them to explain why she should not force them to comply. "Since a federal investigation touching on the same subject matter is currently active ... Mr. Stepien's and Ms. Kelly's fear of releasing incriminating evidence is not a 'mere imaginary possibility' nor is it 'trifling,'" she wrote.

Duck Dynasty Star Counsels Kissing Congressman

When  Vance McAllister needed help in winning his Louisiana congressional seat last year, he turned to “Duck Dynasty” star Willie Robertson for an endorsement. When the newly-elected McAllister needed a date to January’s State of the Union Address — his first as a  congressman —...

New Hillary Clinton memoir set for June 10 release

Hillary Clinton, the former US secretary of state who is contemplating a second run for the White House, will release a new memoir on June 10, her publisher announced Wednesday.

Obama vows to protect soldiers in Fort Hood tribute

Fort Hood (United States) (AFP) - President Barack Obama vowed to do more to protect US soldiers on Wednesday as he paid a somber tribute to victims of last week's Fort Hood shooting, the second gun rampage at the Texas military base in five years. Speaking before the families of three soldiers killed by a comrade who took his own life during the April 2 shooting, Obama referenced the 2009 massacre at the base which claimed 13 lives. "Part of what makes this so painful is that we've been here before," Obama said. Completely eliminating every security risk from a base the size of Fort Hood may not be possible, Obama said.

Israeli ban on Palestinian contact 'unfortunate,' US says

Washington on Wednesday denounced as "unfortunate" an order from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to limit his cabinet's contacts with their Palestinian counterparts. We regard it as unfortunate," State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said, as her boss John Kerry met with Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman. Netanyahu ordered ministers to limit contact with their Palestinian counterparts in response to "the Palestinian violation of their commitments under peace talks," an Israeli official told AFP.