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Reprinted with permission from AlterNet.

Republicans on the House Rules Committee successfully stopped Veterans Affairs doctors from being allowed to recommend medical marijuana in states where the treatment is legal.

The  “Veterans Equal Access” amendment will not move to debate on the House floor. GOP lawmakers wouldn’t allow it to be included in the House’s proposed VA funding bill for next year, effectively killing it.

Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), who sponsored the amendment, told McClatchy that veterans have been “failed” by the VA on pain management issues. He referenced opioid addiction, which can occur due to opiate-derived medications prescribed for chronic pain management.

Blumenauer correctly pointed out that his amendment had bipartisan support. “But somehow the House Rules Committee decided it wasn’t going to allow this amendment,” he added.

Federal law still considers all marijuana consumption to be illegal. This prohibits VA doctors from recommending medical marijuana. If veterans want to use medical marijuana, they have to go outside the VA system. This incurs high out-of-pocket cost for veterans needing the pain treatment.

A Senate finance bill contains the medical marijuana provision, so approval of marijuana treatment is still possible.

For now, veterans cannot receive medical marijuana through the VA, even in states that offer it legally to other residents.

Proud Boys demonstrator

Photo by chaddavis.photography/ CC BY-SA 2.0

Reprinted with permission from DailyKos

It's become apparent that, even as Donald Trump tries to deny reality and continue claiming he won the election, the hate group that he ordered, on national television, to "stand back and stand by" now considers (per leadership's statements that "standby order has been rescinded," as well as other threatening statements on social media) those orders null and void: The Proud Boys are now playing the role of Trump's goon-squad defenders in the streets—and appear unlikely to stop anytime soon.

Following the initial burst of Proud Boy violence in Washington, D.C., during and after the "Million MAGA March" of November 14, the familiar black-and-yellow polos, red MAGA hats and thug tactics have been showing up on the streets of Raleigh, North Carolina; Sacramento, California; and Staten Island, New York. At each event, brawls broke out amid overheated rhetoric, much of it in Trump's defense.

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