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British Foreign Secretary David Cameron holds a joint press conference with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken at the State Department in Washington, US, April 9, 2024.

REUTERS/Michael A. McCoy

Ukraine and Russia war over energy

UK Foreign Secretary David Cameron visited Washington on Tuesday to lobby for greater material US support for Ukraine, and Congress is likely to provide a package that includes help for Ukraine by the end of the month, according to analysis from Eurasia Group, our parent company.

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US Capitol, January 2021.

Aurora Samperio via Reuters Connect

Congress keeps it old school

Last June, the House of Representatives banned staff use of ChatGPT — the free version at least. Now, it’s telling staffers that use of Microsoft’s Copilot, a tool built on the same large language model as ChatGPT, is also prohibited.

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House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) speaking at a press conference at the U.S. Capitol.

Is Ukraine funding on the House’s horizon?

After stalling a vote for months, House Speaker Mike Johnson hinted Sunday that he may introduce a new Ukraine aid package when Congress returns next week.

The new package would be structured as a loan rather than a grant, an idea former President Donald Trump has supported in the past. Johnson needs Trump’s approval to keep the MAGA contingency of the House on board.

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Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) during a House Oversight Committee hearing on Hunter Biden and his business dealings on Wednesday, March 20, 2024.

Aaron Schwartz/REUTERS

House passes spending bill, prompting far-right revolt

Congress continues to be a source of seemingly nonstop political drama as lawmakers on Friday again scrambled to keep the US government’s lights on. The House of Representatives passed a $1.2 trillion spending bill hours ahead of a midnight deadline to avert a partial government shutdown.

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Jess Frampton

Who pays the price for a TikTok ban?

It’s a tough time to be an influencer in America.

TikTok’s future in the United States may be up against the clock after the House voted in favor of banning the popular social media app if its Chinese owner, ByteDance, doesn’t sell. President Joe Biden said he’d sign the bill if it reaches his desk, but it’s unclear whether the Senate will pass the legislation.

Biden and a good chunk of Congress are worried ByteDance is essentially an arm of the Chinese Communist Party. Do they have a point, or are they just fearmongering in an election year amid newly stabilized but precarious relations between Washington and Beijing?

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The US flag and TikTok logo are seen in this illustration taken June 2, 2023.

REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File Photo

TikTok on the clock

In a rare bipartisan vote of 352-65, the US House of Representatives passed a bill on Wednesday that – if it survives the Senate — could force TikTok to divest from its Chinese parent company ByteDance or be banned on all US devices.

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US President Joe Biden delivers the State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress in the House Chamber of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, U.S., on March 7, 2024.

REUTERS/Elizabeth Frantz

Rowdy SOTU sets the tone for 2024

With both parties’ nominees locked in, Thursday’s State of the Union played more like a campaign-rally-cum-stand-up-comedy — complete with crowd work and hecklers.

President Joe Biden took advantage of the bully pulpit to highlight his administration’s successes and contrast them disfavorably with those of his predecessor on everything from economic performance to foreign policy. He did so without once using Donald Trump’s name.

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President Joe Biden speaks to the press before boarding Air Force One at Hagerstown Regional Airport in Hagerstown, Maryland, on March 5, 2024.

REUTERS/Amanda Andrade-Rhoades/File Photo

State of the Elephant downstairs

US President Joe Biden takes the podium tonight for his annual State of the Union address to Congress. Ahead of what will almost certainly be an epic electoral rematch against Donald Trump this fall, this SOTU is, basically, a campaign speech.
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