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Cabinet Appointments And Nominations

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BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — President Joe Biden has nominated a longtime environmental advocate and Democratic aide to oversee the vast expanses of federally owned land in Western states — the latest political appointment raising concerns among Republicans as Biden moves to curtail energy production from public reserves.

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VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis met with Lebanese Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri on Thursday and urged all Lebanese political leaders to “urgently commit themselves to the benefit of the nation," as the country endures a series of crises and disagreements that have prevented the formation of a government.

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HELENA, Mont. (AP) — Six members of the Montana Supreme Court will consider a legal challenge to a new Montana law that would eliminate the state's judicial nomination commission and allow the governor to appoint judges to fill vacancies between elections, the court ruled Wednesday.

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WASHINGTON (AP) — Joe Biden will convene his first Cabinet meeting on Thursday, a presidential rite of passage that will be used to promote his new infrastructure plan. The gathering will look very different from those held by his predecessor.

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MADRID (AP) — Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez reshuffled his Cabinet on Tuesday by appointing women to the top positions after one of his deputies left the left-wing coalition government to run in a regional election.

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ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp drew protests Thursday as he signed into law a sweeping Republican-sponsored overhaul of state elections that includes new restrictions on voting by mail and greater legislative control over how elections are run.

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — In 1977, Cynthia Bonta was among 3,000 people who locked arms and tried in vain to prevent 400 riot police from evicting the mostly Asian tenants of a hotel near San Francisco's Financial District so developers could build a parking garage.

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SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — California Gov. Gavin Newsom nominated a progressive Filipino American state assemblyman as California's next attorney general Wednesday, ensuring a push from the top for criminal justice reform and other liberal priorities in the nation's most populous state.

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Voting mostly along party lines, the U.S. Senate on Wednesday confirmed former Pennsylvania Health Secretary Rachel Levine to be the nation’s assistant secretary of health. She is the first openly transgender federal official to win Senate confirmation.

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