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James Wright

Stories by James

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NAACP, CBC Lament High Rate of Black Unemployment

While the nation appears to be in an economic recovery, leaders of the NAACP and the Congressional Black Caucus bemoan the high number of unemployed blacks.

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Valerie Montgomery Rice Heads Up Morehouse Medical School

Valerie Montgomery Rice, the executive vice president and dean of Morehouse's School of Medicine, is the school's newest president and the first black woman to lead an independent medical school.

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Anthony Williams Endorses Bowser for Mayor

Former D.C. Mayor Anthony Williams has publicly endorsed Council member Muriel Bowser's quest to become the next mayor of the District.

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Gray to Residents: Boycott Md. Rep.'s District for Blocking D.C. Marijuana Law

D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray and leaders of the city's democracy movement are urging residents to boycott vacation destinations in the district of Rep. Andy Harris — including Ocean City — in retaliation to the Maryland Republican's push to stop marijuana decriminalization in the District.

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Norton: St. Elizabeths West is Still On

D.C. Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton announced Thursday that the St. Elizabeths West complex in Southeast is slated to receive a substantial amount of federal funds and the building of the huge project will proceed, contrary to several reports.

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D.C. Political Roundup: 
Ward 8 Democrats Call Truce

Natalie Williams, the president of the Ward 8 Democrats, battled members of the organization's executive board earlier this year but has since made peace with her former adversaries.

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Centric to Air D.C. Emancipation Day Town Hall

Cable channel Centric will air a two-hour special dedicated to the 2014 D.C. Emancipation Day Town Hall on July 4, Council member Vincent Orange (D-At Large) announced Wednesday.

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Gray Cites Progress Fighting HIV, Other STDs

D.C. is no longer one of America's breeding grounds for HIV, sexually transmitted diseases and other ailments, according to a report released Wednesday by the Gray administration.

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Michelle Howard Becomes Navy's First Female Four-Star Admiral

The Navy made history Tuesday when it promoted Michelle Howard, an African-American, to be its first female four-star admiral.

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Peaceoholics Misused $600K in City Funds, D.C. Judge Rules

Peaceoholics, an anti-gang, anti-violence nonprofit in the District, suffered a legal setback Tuesday when a D.C. Superior Court judge entered an order of default judgment against the group and its CEO for more than $600,000.

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Obama, Dems Lambaste Supreme Court Labor Ruling

President Obama and other Democratic leaders expressed concerns about the Supreme Court's ruling Monday that some government employees do not have to pay fees to the labor organizations representing them.

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Supreme Court Blasted for Birth-Control Ruling

Political leaders nationwide lamented the Supreme Court's ruling Monday on Burwell vs. Hobby Lobby allowing for-profit employers to use religious reasons to opt out of a mandate of the Obama health care law to provide contraceptive coverage.

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Cory Booker Sponsors Bill on Juvenile Justice

New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker recently introduced a bill that would incentivize states to replace overly harsh school disciplinary actions and juvenile court punishment with evidence-based solutions that save money, enhance public safety and improve youth outcomes.

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Redskins Sign Jerry Rice Jr.

The Washington Redskins are hoping that Jerry Rice Jr. is a chip off the old block.

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Bonds Supports Good Hope Road Upgrade in Southeast

D.C. Council member Anita Bonds wants to make sure that Ward 8's Good Hope Road in Southeast receives as much economic attention as it needs to develop.

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Obama Loses Supreme Court Recess Appointments Case

In a rare show of unity, the Supreme Court unanimously ruled against the Obama administration and stated that recess appointment for high-level administrative posts made by the president had its limits.

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Holder Takes on Wisconsin Voter ID Law


U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said he will not keep an anti-voting rights decision made by the Supreme Court last year prevent him making sure that all Americans have fair access to the ballot box.

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D.C. Political Roundup: Cheh's AG Elections Bill Takes Center Stage

A bill authored by D.C. Council member Mary Cheh (D-Ward 3), the "Attorney General Partisan Election Implementation Act," may be key to the election of the District's first attorney general in November.

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Black Vote Helps GOP's Cochran; Rangel Hangs On

Anthony Brown and his successful bid for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination was the focal point for most African-Americans on election night Tuesday, but blacks also quietly played a big role in a veteran Republican senator's defeat of a tea party favorite in the Deep South.


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Norton Fights D.C. Pot Decriminalization Amendment

D.C. Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton (D) is fighting to stop an amendment to a House appropriation bill that would block the District from decriminalizing marijuana.

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NAACP Calls for New Voting Rights Act

The NAACP told members of the Senate Judiciary Committee Wednesday that key provisions of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 struck down last year by the Supreme Court need to be reactivated to ensure citizens will be allowed to vote freely.

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'Yoga Tax' Stays in D.C. Budget Proposal

The District of Columbia 2015 budget proposal to be submitted to Mayor Vincent Gray (D) contains the controversial "yoga tax" that will extend the city's sales tax to include gym and fitness services.

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Kenyan McDuffie Honored by Legal Organization

D.C. Council member Kenyan McDuffie was recently recognized by the National Bar Association, the leading organization for African-American legal professionals.

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Howard U. Names Holley-Walker as Law School Dean

Danielle R. Holley-Walker, the associate dean for academic affairs and a law professor at the University of South Carolina Law School, is the new dean of the Howard University School of Law, the school announced Monday.

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Sharpton Commends Central Park Five Settlement



The Rev. Al Sharpton said Thursday's announcement of a $40 million settlement in the controversial Central Park Five case was a "monumental victory" for five young men of color who were unjustly imprisoned for a crime they didn't commit.


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Schwartz Rejects LLC Funding for Mayoral Campaign

Former D.C. Council member and independent mayoral candidate Carol Schwartz said she will not accept campaign contributions from limited liability companies (LLCs) that are a part of any corporation that has already given the legal maximum.

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D.C. Political Roundup: Perdomo Wants to Improve Schools

Lillian Perdomo, who spent years in the trenches of District grassroots politics and community activism, says she is ready to represent Ward 1 on the D.C. State Board of Education.

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Gray Launches Joint Housing Effort with Faith Community

Mayor Vincent Gray launched the "One Congregation, One Family" initiative Wednesday at the New Bethel Baptist Church in Northwest to address the increasing need for secure housing and other social services.

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CBC to Lead Civil Rights Act Anniversary on June 24

Reps. Marcia Fudge, chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus, and John Lewis will join the bipartisan leadership of both houses of Congress in a ceremony marking the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

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NAACP Praises Senate for June 25 Voting Rights Hearing

The US Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing on restoring sections of the landmark 1965 Voting Rights Act on June 25, and leaders of the NAACP could not be happier.

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UCC Branch Calls for Boycott of Washington Redskins

The United Church of Christ's Mid-Atlantic sector passed a resolution Saturday calling for a boycott of the Washington Redskins until the team changes its name, which it deems offensive to Native Americans.

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Edwards Co-Sponsors Women's Heart Health Resolution

Maryland Rep. Donna Edwards, along with Republican colleague Shelley Capito, recently introduced a resolution which recognizes the risks of cardiovascular disease and promotes preventive heart screenings for women.

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Schwartz Signs Rival Catania's Mayoral Petition

Carol Schwartz, the former D.C. Council stalwart who recently launched an unexpected bid for mayor, made another somewhat surprising move Saturday when she announced that she signed a petition to put Council member David Catania, one of her chief competitors, on the Nov. 4 general election mayoral ballot.

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D.C. in Contention for 2024 Olympic Games

D.C. is vying for the U.S. bid for the 2024 Olympics, the top official of the U.S. Olympic Committee said.

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D.C. Political Roundup: Grosso Practices Politics His Way

D.C. Council member David Grosso, who joined the council in 2013, aspires to be a good legislator but has a tendency to do things his way.

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Virginia Rep. Scott Laments Loss of Cantor, State's Seniority

While most Democrats in Virginia cheered Don Beyer's primary victory in his bid to replace Rep. Jim Moran (D) in the House and the defeat of House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, Rep. Bobby Scott said that the changes will come at a price.

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Norton's Racial-Profiling Amendment Passed by House

D.C. Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton scored a major political victory Monday when she shepherded through the House an amendment to a transportation bill that prevents racial profiling of motorists by law enforcement officials.

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Holder Endorses Shorter Terms of Imprisoned Drug Offenders

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said Tuesday that the Justice Department supports a proposal to allow some people serving time in federal prison for nonviolent drug offenses to be eligible for reduced sentences.


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Obama's Executive Order Pushes to Lower Student Loan Debt

President Obama signed an executive order Monday mandating that borrowers of student loans can pay at only 10 percent of their monthly income, part of his attempt to ease the increasing burden of student loan debt.

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Morant Tabbed as Dean at GW Law School

Blake D. Morant has been selected as the George Washington University's next dean of law, the university announced Monday.

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Six Cities in Contention for DNC 2016

Six cities are in the running to host the 2016 Democratic National Convention, the Democratic National Committee announced Saturday.

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Koch Brothers Donate $25 Million to UNCF

The Koch brothers, known in political circles as generous supporters of conservative causes and opponents of President Obama, recently donated $25 million to the United Negro College Fund.

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Returning-Citizen Activists Warily Back Anti-Discrimination Bill

Leading District advocates for returning citizens say a bill authored by D.C. Council member Tommy Wells (D-Ward 6) will remove barriers to gaining employment in the city, despite their trepidation about the legislation.

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P.G. County Council Condemns Nigerian Abductions

The Prince George's County Council voted unanimously to adopt a resolution condemning African military group, Boko Haram, which has claimed responsibility for the abduction of 276 Nigerian girls from a boarding school in April.

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Ellerbe Stepping Down as D.C. Fire Chief

D.C. Fire and Emergency Management Services Chief Kenneth Ellerbe announced Wednesday that he will resign in July, putting an end to months of speculation about his job security and repeated calls for him to step aside.

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D.C. Court Overturns Council's Delay of AG Election

In a surprising move, the D.C. Court of Appeals ruled Wednesday that the city must hold an election for the office of attorney general as soon as possible.

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Norton Nominee Receives Senate Confirmation for Federal Judgeship

Tanya Chutkan, an Eleanor Holmes Norton-recommended nominee for judge on the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, received confirmation Wednesday from the U.S. Senate, becoming just the second black woman to serve on the court in 32 years.

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D.C. Political Roundup: Alexander Decides Against At-Large Bid

D.C. Council member Yvette Alexander (D-Ward 7) used her better judgment and has decided not to run as an independent at-large candidate in the upcoming general election, and her constituents agree that she made the right decision.

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Environmentalists Chide McDuffie, Gray for McMillan Park Plans

D.C. Council member Kenyan McDuffie (D-Ward 5) is being criticized by leaders of a group who wants the new McMillan Park project in Northwest to be an environmentally-friendly, historically-relevant entity.

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Construction Company Donates to D.C.-Area Charities

PC Construction, a national employee-owned company with a location in Arlington, Virginia, announced that it has donated $15,000 to three D.C. charities as part of its "Building Communities: PC Gives Back" campaign.