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Senate votes on internet privacy, Perry challenges A&M's student body election and more in politics

By Lauren AguirreMarch 23, 2017

United States Capitol Building
United States Capitol Building Getty Images

PRIVACY ON THE INTERNET

Senators voted Thursday to repeal a set of regulations that serve to protect user privacy online. This repeal could make it easier for broadband companies to sell and share their customers’ usage information for advertising purposes.

The rules, which prevent providers from abusing the data they collect from their customers, were passed last year over objections from Republicans that they went too far. The Senate approved a resolution 50 to 48 that would prevent the rules from going into effect and would bar the Federal Communications Commission from ever enacting similar consumer protections.


SCOTUS NOMINEE FILIBUSTER

Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer has said he will vote down President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee and urged other Democrats join him. The nominee, Neil Gorsuch, has just completed his confirmation hearings in the Senate.

To confirm a Supreme Court nominee, he or she must receive at least 60 "yes" votes in the Senate. Republicans only have a majority at 52 senators. This filibuster could cause Republicans to change the Senate’s rules and ban filibustering on Supreme Court nominee confirmations. Republicans are eager to confirm Gorsuch before their Easter recess beginning April 7.


STUDENT BODY PRESIDENT

Energy Secretary Rick Perry has made the Texas A&M student body president election national news. In an op-ed submitted to the Houston Chronicle, he suggested that his alma mater’s first openly gay president stole the election. Perry wrote that the campus election "at best made a mockery of due process and transparency" and at worst "allowed an election to be stolen outright."

The winner was elected on a technicality after the top vote getter was disqualified after complaints that he intimidated voters and failed to provide receipts for items used in an online campaign video. A student court dismissed charges of voter fraud but upheld charges of incomplete financial disclosure.


IVANKA IN THE HOUSE

President Trump’s eldest daughter Ivanka Trump is set to move into a West Wing office and receive top security clearance. She is also set to receive government-provided communication devices, although she will not be a government employee. This change has received questions regarding nepotism and ethical concerns.

In the initial weeks of Trump’s presidency, Ivanka Trump has appeared alongside her father and senior staffers in major meetings with business figures and world leaders. She has also reportedly weighed in on policy issues and established some presence in the White House. Her husband, Jared Kushner, has been a senior White House adviser since the beginning of the administration.