Headlines
8:16 am
Tue June 30, 2015

Headlines: Oklahoma Executions, Storm Shelters & Wedding Rings

Headlines for Tuesday, June 30, 2015:

  • Oklahoma is prepared to move forward with three previously scheduled executions. (NewsOK)
     
  • Two new plaintiffs join in the fight against Tulsa County Sheriff Stanley Glanz. (Tulsa World)

  • The US Supreme Court strikes down the EPA’s Mercury and Air Toxic Standards. (NewsOK)

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Law
4:58 am
Tue June 30, 2015

Supreme Court Concludes Term With Death Penalty Ruling, Looks Ahead

The gurney in the the execution chamber at the Oklahoma State Penitentiary in McAlester, Okla. On Monday the Supreme Court voted 5-4 in a case from Oklahoma that the sedative midazolam can be used in executions without violating the prohibition on cruel and unusual punishment.
Sue Ogrocki AP

Originally published on Tue June 30, 2015 1:52 pm

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday issued the last of its opinions for this term — on the death penalty, anti-pollution regulations and the power of independent commissions to draw congressional and state legislative districts. In addition, the court issued a set of orders that set up cases to be heard next term on affirmative action and abortion.

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Politics
7:02 pm
Mon June 29, 2015

Lethal Injection Ruling Draws Out Justices' Passionate Opinions

In dissent, Justice Sonia Sotomayor wrote that under the majority's reasoning it would not matter if the prisoner was being "drawn and quartered, slowly tortured to death, or actually burned at the stake," as long as there was no more humane method of execution available. Justice Antonin Scalia orally rebutted Justice Stephen Breyer's dissent, calling it "gobbledygook."
Carolyn Kaster AP

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday dealt a major blow to death penalty opponents, upholding the use of a controversial drug as part of a three-drug execution cocktail. The vote was 5-4, with unusually passionate and sometimes bitter opinions from the majority and dissenting justices.

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Science
5:25 pm
Mon June 29, 2015

Supreme Court Rules In Industry's Favor. What's EPA's Next Move?

A plume of steam billows from the coal-fired Merrimack Station in Bow, N.H. in January 2015.
Jim Cole AP

Originally published on Mon June 29, 2015 6:37 pm

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Monday that the Environmental Protection Agency made a mistake when it told electric power plants to reduce mercury emissions. The high court says the EPA should first have considered how much it would cost power plants to do that.

The decision comes too late for most power companies, but it could affect future EPA regulations.

Mercury in the air is a health risk. When you burn coal or oil, you create airborne mercury that can end up in fish we eat and cause serious health problems.

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Politics
5:25 pm
Mon June 29, 2015

Cruz: States Have 'No Obligation' To Accept Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Originally published on Mon June 29, 2015 6:32 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

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StateImpact Oklahoma
1:33 pm
Mon June 29, 2015

Oklahoma’s Largest Utility Confused As U.S. Supreme Court Scuttles EPA Rule

OG&E's coal-fired power plant in Muskogee, Okla.
Gmeador / Flickr

In a 5-4 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday blocked the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s attempt to curb mercury and other toxic emissions from coal-fired power plants across the country.

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The Two-Way
10:29 am
Mon June 29, 2015

Supreme Court Says Use Of Lethal Injection Drug Is Legal

Originally published on Mon June 29, 2015 1:47 pm

Updated at 10:46 a.m. ET

The U.S. Supreme Court, in a 5-4 opinion, says the sedative used in Oklahoma's lethal injection cocktail does not violate the U.S. Constitution's ban on cruel and unusual punishment.

Here's the background to the case, in the words of SCOTUSblog:

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Headlines
9:03 am
Mon June 29, 2015

Headlines: Cherokee Elections, Budget Lawsuit & American Idol in Tulsa

Headlines for Monday, June 29, 2015:

  • Cherokee Chief Bill John Baker wins reelection. (Tulsa World)

  • The slowdown on I-35 in southern Oklahoma could last all summer and into the fall. (NewsOK)

  • The cost to fix levees in Tulsa could run $35 million or more. (Tulsa World)

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Politics
9:08 am
Sun June 28, 2015

A Less-Restrained Obama Finally Says 'Bucket'

With less than two years left in his presidency, President Obama has been less scripted and appears less confined by politics.
Saul Loeb AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 2, 2015 6:07 pm

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The Two-Way
8:08 am
Sat June 27, 2015

Activist Climbs Flagpole At S.C. Statehouse, Removes Confederate Banner

Activist climbing flagpole at South Carolina's Capitol to remove Confederate battle flag.
Mediater

Originally published on Sat June 27, 2015 4:37 pm

Updated at 4:35 p.m. ET

An African-American activist scaled the 30-foot flag pole in front of the South Carolina Statehouse early this morning and removed the Confederate battle flag that flies there.

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