US National News Roundup: Biden Orders Government to Study Digital Dollar and Other Cryptocurrency Risks; US Congress Reaches Deal on Government Spending, Including $13.6 Billion for Ukraine and More

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Below is a summary of briefs from US domestic news.

Biden orders government to study digital dollar and other cryptocurrency risks

US President Joe Biden will sign an executive order on Wednesday requiring the government to assess the risks and benefits of creating a central bank digital dollar, as well as other cryptocurrency issues, administration officials said. . Biden’s order will require the Treasury Department, Commerce Department, and other key agencies to prepare reports on “the future of money” and the role cryptocurrencies will play.

US Congress reaches deal on government spending, including $13.6 billion for Ukraine

US lawmakers reached a deal to fund the federal government for fiscal year 2022, including $13.6 billion in security and humanitarian assistance for Ukraine and $15.6 billion to continue fighting the COVID, U.S. congressional leaders said in a statement on Wednesday.

Biden’s policy strategy on US gas hikes? It’s Putin’s fault

As Republicans exploit soaring gas prices to gain political traction ahead of this year’s congressional elections, President Joe Biden’s team is pursuing a counter-narrative strategy: blame Russian President Vladimir Putin. Biden and his administration have coalesced around the phrase “Putin’s price hike” to describe the energy inflation challenges created by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and retaliatory Western sanctions, officials said. White House officials.

Biden Bans Russian Oil Imports Into US, Warns Gasoline Will Rise Further

US President Joe Biden on Tuesday imposed an immediate ban on imports of oil and other Russian energy in retaliation for the invasion of Ukraine, amid strong support from US voters and lawmakers, even though the move will drive up energy prices in the United States. “We ban all Russian oil and gas energy imports,” Biden told reporters at the White House. “It means that Russian oil will no longer be acceptable in American ports and that the American people will deliver another mighty blow to (Russian President Vladimir) Putin’s war machine.”

Gas leak spurs evacuation of ConocoPhillips field in Alaska

A days-long natural gas leak forced a partial evacuation at one of the largest oil fields in North Slope, Alaska, media reported Tuesday, with a local official saying gas was still leaking. The leak was discovered on Friday at a drilling site in ConocoPhillips’ Alpine oil field, the company confirmed on Tuesday evening.

Congress passes $50 billion U.S. Postal Service relief bill

The U.S. Senate voted overwhelmingly on Tuesday to provide the long-loss-making Postal Service (USPS) with about $50 billion in financial relief over a decade and require its future retirees to enroll in a health insurance plan. governmental.

In a rare show of bipartisanship for a tightly divided Congress, the 79-19 vote follows approval by the U.S. House of Representatives in early February and sends the bill to President Joe Biden for his signature.

Trial opens for four men charged with conspiracy to kidnap Michigan governor

Prosecutors and defense attorneys will present opening statements on Wednesday in the federal trial of four men accused of conspiring to kidnap Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer in 2020 because of restrictions she imposed to control the pandemic. Adam Fox, Brandon Caserta, Barry Croft Jr. and Daniel Harris are each charged with conspiring to kidnap the Democratic governor from her vacation home. If found guilty by a 12-person jury sitting on Tuesday, they face a maximum sentence of life in prison.

Watchdog: US Homeland Security Office failed to warn of Capitol threats

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s intelligence office knew in advance about threats related to the January 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol, but did not notify other law enforcement offices until until it’s too late, the department’s internal watchdog found. DHS Inspector General’s new report paints a critical picture of the Office of Intelligence and Analysis (I&A), which he says failed at least three times to release intelligence about the building’s storming by supporters of President Donald Trump, who wanted to block congressional certification of his November 2020 election defeat.

Analysis-US can expect ‘flood of plea deals’ in Capitol attack cases after guilty verdict

Prosecutors can expect a flurry of guilty pleas from some of the hundreds of people accused of taking part in the assault on the US Capitol, after the first criminal trial related to the riot got under way. ended in a lightning-fast guilty verdict on Tuesday, legal experts said. A Washington, D.C. jury deliberated just two hours before finding Guy Reffitt of Texas guilty of the five counts he faces for his role in the January 6, 2021 violence by Donald Trump supporters, including bringing a firearm onto Capitol grounds and obstructing official process. He faces up to 20 years in prison.

Former Proud Boys president Tarrio arrested for riot conspiracy at US Capitol

The former president of the American right-wing group The Proud Boys, Enrique Tarrio, was arrested on Tuesday on conspiracy charges for his alleged role in plotting the Jan. 6, 2021, assault on the Capitol to block the president’s certification. The election of Joe Biden. Tarrio, 38, appeared in a virtual hearing in Miami-based federal court in a cellblock at a nearby local jail, and prosecutors said they were seeking to hold him pending trial because they thought he posed a danger to the community and was at risk of theft.

(With agency contributions.)

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