July 10, 2013 3:03 PM
The Texas House has passed new restrictions on when, how and where women may get an abortion, setting up a potential repeat of a Senate showdown that derailed the measure last month. President Barack Obama jumped into the immigration debate on Wednesday, releasing a report touting economic benefits from reforms and meeting with Hispanic lawmakers, as House of Representatives Republicans gathered to try to craft their response. The release of the White House report signaled a new outspokenness by Obama, who made immigration a top legislative priority but stayed on the sidelines of the debate that raged in the Senate in May and June. The report said passing reforms would grow the economy by 3.3 percent by 2023 and reduce the deficit by almost $850 billion over 20 years. Republican senators accused President Barack Obama of trying to stack an influential U.S. appeals court with friendly judges in the hope they would approve forthcoming federal regulations. Utah Republican Mike Lee said Obama wants more Democratic-appointed judges on the court as he focuses on issuing regulations expected to be subject to legal challenges that will be heard by the court. In June, Obama named three lawyers to serve as judges on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, which often weighs industry challenges to regulations issued by such agencies as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.