Bill would bar issuance of local ID cards
Republican lawmakers are circulating a proposal that would prohibit county and town governments from issuing photo identification cards. The legislation also would bar such cards from being used for voting or obtaining benefits such as food stamps. Critics say the bill targets a plan recently approved by Milwaukee to issue local ID cards to the homeless, immigrants in the country illegally and other residents unable to obtain driver's licenses.
Former governor, senator dies at 90
Dale Bumpers, a Democrat who rose to prominence in the 1970s as a reformist governor and then served four terms in the U.S. Senate, where he was known for his oratorical skills and political independence, died in Little Rock. He was 90. Former President Bill Clinton once said Bumpers was "funny as all get-out and could talk an owl out of a tree."
Humpback whales' return is behind schedule
December usually marks the start of humpback whale season, but the animals have been slow to return this year. "This isn't a concern, but it's of interest," said Ed Lyman, a resource protection manager. More than 10,000 humpback whales make the journey from Alaska to Hawaii to mate and give birth.
After delays, widened canal to reopen in May
After several years of work to widen the Panama Canal, the waterway connecting the Atlantic and Pacific oceans will be reopened in May, President Juan Carlos Varela said. The expanded canal was originally due to reopen in 2014, but labor and financial disputes with construction companies delayed the project's completion several times. The project cost $5.25 billion.
Citizenship proposal creates political dispute
The push by the Socialist government to revoke the citizenship of convicted terrorists with dual nationality after the Paris terror attacks has turned into a harsh political dispute. Members of the far right applaud the move, while some politicians on the left express indignation at what they call a divisive measure that would create two classes of citizens. Polls show that 90 percent of residents support the measure.