More Troops Headed to Iraq, Ohio Could Get Legal Pot Next, Senate Dems Offer Do-Nothing Birth Control Bill: A.M. Links



  • The New York Times explores how the U.S. bail system punishes poor defendants, regardless of their guilt or innocence. "It sets up a system where first there's the punishment, and then there's the opportunity to go to court for trial," said Maryland public defender Paul DeWolfe.
  • Senate Democrats introduced a birth control "accessibility" bill in response to Republicans' recent over-the-counter (OTC) pill proposal. The bill does nothing to encourage OTC oral contraception sales, but stipulates that if it does happen, insurance companies must cover the pills without charging a co-pay. 
  • President Obama is considering sending up to 500 more troops to Iraq to help train local fighters. (Ceci n'est pas une war…
  • Ohio marijuana advocates say they have enough signatures to get a vote on both medicinal and recreational marijuana legalization on the 2015 ballot. 
  • Louisiana lawmakers this week voted to reduce maximum penalties for marijuana offenses, and Massachusetts may eliminate mandatory minimum sentences for non-violent drug offenders. 
  • The Labor Department is about to make millions more workers eligible for overtime pay. What could go wrong?
  • San Francisco is close to requiring health warnings on soda advertisements.
  • The McKinney, Texas, police officer who tackled a teenager and drew his gun on two others at a pool party last weekend has resigned.
  • In the U.K., anyone caught selling balloons filled with "laughing gas" (aka nitrous) could face seven years in prison.

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