the Senate ~~~ CONGRESS 12/19 ~~~ the House


beaseedforchangestickersGREENWRAP UP For  12/16/2014

Roll Call Votes

  1. Cloture on Executive Calendar #1084, Sarah R. Saldana, to be an Assistant Secretary of Homeland Security; Invoked: 53-41.
  2. Confirmation of Executive Calendar #1084, Sarah R. Saldana, to be an Assistant Secretary of Homeland Security; Confirmed: 55-39.
  3. Cloture on Executive Calendar #1150, Antony Blinken, to be Deputy Secretary of State; Invoked: 53-40.
  4. Confirmation of Executive Calendar #1150, Antony Blinken, to be Deputy Secretary of State; Confirmed 55-38.
  5. Cloture on Executive Calendar #1144, Colette Honorable, to be a Member of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission; Invoked: 65-28.
  6. Passage of H.R.5771, the Tax Extenders Legislation; Passed: 76-16.
  7. Motion to invoke cloture on Stephen R. Bough, to be U.S. District Judge for the Western District of Missouri; Invoked 51-38.
  8. Confirmation of Stephen R. Bough, to be U.S. District Judge for the Western District of Missouri; Confirmed: 51-38.

 

Legislative Business

Passed H.R.3608: Grand Portage Band Per Capita Adjustment Act

Passed H.R.4030: To designate the facility of the United States Postal Service located at 18640 NW 2nd Avenue in Miami, Florida, as the “Father Richard Marquess-Barry Post Office Building”.

Passed Calendar #131, S.684 with committee-reported amendments and Johnson amendment: Mni Wiconi

Passed Calendar #513, S.1800: Bureau of Reclamation Transparency Act with committee-reported amendments and Barrasso amendment

Adopted Calendar #648, S.Res.595: Nobel Laureates Satyarthi and Yousafzai

Adopted S.Res.226: Celebrating the 100th Anniversary of the Birth of James Cleveland ‘Jesse’ Owens

Adopted S.Res.564: Centennial of the Passenger Pigeon Extinction, with amendment at the desk

Adopted H.Con.Res.125: Adjournment Sine Die Resolution by voice vote

 

Executive Business

The Senate confirmed the following nominations by voice votes:

  1. Executive Calendar #979, Daniel J. Santos, to be a Member of the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board for a term expiring October 18, 2017;
  2. Executive Calendar #635, Frank A. Rose, to be an Assistant Secretary of State (Verification and Compliance);
  3. Executive Calendar #1144, Colette Honorable, to be Member of FERC;
  4. Executive Calendar #840, Estevan Lopez, to be Commissioner of Reclamation;
  5. Executive Calendar #922, Marcus Jadotte, to be an Assistant Secretary of Commerce;
  6. Executive Calaendar #901, Jonathan Stivers, to be an Assistant Administrator of USAID;
  7. Executive Calendar #735, John Cruden, to be an Assistant Attorney General;
  8. Executive Calendar #553, Christopher Smith, to be Assistant Secretary of Energy;
  9. Executive Calendar #1070, Jorge Alonso, District Judge – IL;
  10. Executive Calendar #1071, Haywood Gilliam, District Judge – CA;
  11. Executive Calendar #1072, Amit Mehta, District Judge – DC;
  12. Executive Calendar #1073, Allison Burroughs, District Judge – MA;
  13. Executive Calendar #1075, John Blakey, District Judge – IL;
  14. Executive Calendar #1076, Amos Mazzant, District Judge – TX;
  15. Executive Calendar #1077, Robert Pitman, District Judge – TX;
  16. Executive Calendar #1078, Robert Schroeder, District Judge – TX;
  17. Executive Calendar #1145, Joan Azrack, District Judge – NY;
  18. Executive Calendar #1146, Elizabeth Dillon, District Judge – VA; and
  19. Executive Calendar #1147, Loretta Biggs, District Judge – NC.

 

The Senate confirmed the following nominations by unanimous consent:

BROADCASTING BOARD OF GOVERNORS

#900 Karen Kornbluh – to be a Member of the Broadcasting Board of Governors for a term expiring August 13, 2016

CHEMICAL SAFETY AND HAZARD INVESTIGATION BOARD

#651 Richard J. Engler – to be a Member of the Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board for a term of five years

#970 Manuel H. Ehrlich, Jr. – to be a Member of the Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board for a term of five years

OFFICE OF THE DIRECTOR OF NATIONAL INTELLIGENCE

#1079 Nicholas J. Rasmussen – to be Director of the National Counterterrorism Center, Office of the Director of National Intelligence

INTER-AMERICAN DEVELOPMENT BANK

#514 Mark E. Lopes – to be United States Executive Director of the Inter-American Development Bank for a term of three years

DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS

#1104 Leigh A. Bradley – to be General Counsel, Department of Veterans Affairs

DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

#1141 Mark R. Rosekind – to be Administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS

#933 Helen Tierney – to be Chief Financial Officer, Department of Veterans Affairs

MORRIS K. UDALL AND STEWART L. UDALL FOUNDATION

#644 Charles P. Rose – to be a Member of the Board of Trustees of the Morris K. Udall and Stewart L. Udall Foundation for a term expiring May 26, 2019

#645 Mark Thomas Nethery – to be a Member of the Board of Trustees of the Morris K. Udall and Stewart L. Udall Foundation for a term expiring October 6, 2018

#646 Anne J. Udall – to be a Member of the Board of Trustees of the Morris K. Udall and Stewart L. Udall Foundation for a term expiring October 6, 2016 (Reappointment)

#737 Camilla C. Feibelman – to be a Member of the Board of Trustees of the Morris K. Udall and Stewart L. Udall Foundation

LEGAL SERVICES CORPORATION

#844 Martha L. Minow – to be a Member of the Board of Directors of the Legal Services Corporation for a term expiring July 13, 2017

#845 Charles Norman Wiltse Keckler – to be a Member of the Board of Directors of the Legal Services Corporation for a term expiring July 13, 2016

#862 Gloria Valencia-Weber – to be a Member of the Board of Directors of the Legal Services Corporation for a term expiring July 13, 2017

#864 John Gerson Levi – to be a Member of the Board of Directors of the Legal Services Corporation for a term expiring July 13, 2017

#865 Robert James Grey, Jr. – to be a Member of the Board of Directors of the Legal Services Corporation for a term expiring July 13, 2017

ELECTION ASSISTANCE COMMISSION

#757 Thomas Hicks – to be a Member of the Election Assistance Commission for a term expiring December 12, 2017

#1085 Matthew Vincent Masterson – to be a Member of the Election Assistance Commission for a term expiring December12, 2017

#1086 Christy A. McCormick – to be a Member of the Election Assistance Commission for a term expiring December 12, 2015

DEPARTMENT OF STATE

#1099 Isobel Coleman – to be Representative of the United States of America to the United Nations for U. N. Management and Reform, with the rank of Ambassador

#1100 Isobel Coleman – to be an Alternate Representative of the United States of America to the Sessions of the General Assembly of the United Nations during her tenure of service as Representative of the United States of America to the United Nations for U.N. Management and Reform

UNITED STATES AGENCY FOR INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT

#790 Paige Eve Alexander – to be an Assistant Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development

DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE

#1110 Robert M. Scher – to be an Assistant Secretary of Defense

#1111 David J. Berteau – to be an Assistant Secretary of Defense

DEPARTMENT OF STATE

#1090 Jess Lippincott Baily – to be Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Republic of Macedonia

#1091 Robert Francis Cekuta – to be Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Republic of Azerbaijan

#1092 Margaret Ann Uyehara – to be Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to Montenegro

#1093 Richard M. Mills, Jr. – to be Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Republic of Armenia

PN2092Micheal P. O’Rielly, (FCC)

PN1279Laurie Mikva (Legal Services)

PN1280Victor Maddox (Legal Services)

PN2065Joseph Pius Pietzyzk (Legal Services)

PN1916James Huffman (Udall)

The Senate also confirmed Calendar #618, James Cole, Jr. to be General Counsel, Department of Education;

Calendar #1005, PN1804, Arthur Lee Bentley III, of Florida, to be United States Attorney for the Middle District of Florida for the term of four years; and

Calendar #1062, PN1806, David Rivera, of Tennessee, to be United States Attorney for the Middle District of Tennessee for the term of four years.

Next session 1/6/2015

===========================================

the House did not meet on 12/19

Last Floor Action:12/16
12:08:02 P.M. – The Speaker announced that the House do now adjourn pursuant to H. Con. Res. 125.

The next meeting is scheduled for 1:00 p.m. on January 2, 2015. resolution. Agreed to without objection.

12:00:00 P.M.
The House convened, starting a new legislative day.
12:00:34 P.M. The Speaker designated the Honorable Randy Neugebauer to act as Speaker pro tempore for today.
12:01:40 P.M. Today’s prayer was offered by Br. Thomas More Garrett, Dominican House of Studies, Washington, DC.
12:02:01 P.M. Pursuant to section 3(a) of House Resolution 775, the Journal of the last day’s proceedings was approved.
12:02:07 P.M. PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE – The Chair led the House in reciting the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag.
12:02:50 P.M. The House received a message from the Clerk. Pursuant to the permission granted in Clause 2(h) of Rule II of the Rules of the U.S. House of Representatives, the Clerk notified the House that she had received the following message from the Secretary of the Senate on December 12, 2014 at 6:20 p.m.: That the Senate agreed to H. Con. Res. 121, H. Con. Res. 123 and that the Senate agreed to the House Amendment to the Senate amendment to H.R. 3979.
12:03:20 P.M. The House received a message from the Clerk. Pursuant to the permission granted in Clause 2(h) of Rule II of the Rules of the U.S. House of Representatives, the Clerk notified the House that she had received the following message from the Secretary of the Senate on December 13, 2014 at 4:25 p.m.: That the Senate passed H.J. Res. 131.
12:03:55 P.M. The House received a message from the Clerk. Pursuant to the permission granted in Clause 2(h) of Rule II of the Rules of the U.S. House of Representatives, the Clerk notified the House that she had received the following message from the Secretary of the Senate on December 15, 2014 at 8:56 a.m.: That the Senate agreed to H. Con. Res. 122 and agreed to the House amendment to the Senate amendment to H.R. 83.
12:04:11 P.M. The House received a message from the Clerk. Pursuant to the permission granted in Clause 2(h) of Rule II of the Rules of the U.S. House of Representatives, the Clerk notified the House that she had received the following message from the Secretary of the Senate on December 15, 2014 at 9:55 a.m.: That the Senate passed H.R. 2591 and H.R. 5859.
12:05:15 P.M. The House received a message from the Clerk. Pursuant to the permission granted in Clause 2(h) of Rule II of the Rules of the U.S. House of Representatives, the Clerk notified the House that she had received the following message from the Secretary of the Senate on December 16, 2014 at 9:03 a.m.: That the Senate passed H.R. 2754, H.R. 3572, H.R. 1206, H.R. 1378, H.R. 5050, H.R. 5185, H.R. 5816, S. 706, H.R. 3027, H.R. 4416, H.R. 4651, H.R. 5331, H.R. 5562, H.R. 4276, and H.R. 5687.
12:06:44 P.M. The House received a message from the Clerk. Pursuant to the permission granted in Clause 2(h) of Rule II of the Rules of the U.S. House of Representatives, the Clerk notified the House that she had received the following message from the Secretary of the Senate on December 16, 2014 at 10:57 a.m.: That the Senate passed H.R. 2901, H.R. 1068, H.R. 2866 amended, and S. 1744.
12:07:00 P.M. Without objection, the Chair announced that when House adjourns today, it shall adjourn to meet at noon on Friday, December 19, 2014, unless it sooner has received a message from the Senate transmitting its adoption of H. Con. Res. 125, in which case the House shall stand adjourned pursuant to that concurrent resolution. Agreed to without objection.
12:08:02 P.M. The Speaker announced that the House do now adjourn pursuant to H. Con. Res. 125. The next meeting is scheduled for 1:00 p.m. on January 2, 2015. resolution. Agreed to without objection.

the Senate ~~~ CONGRESS 12/17 ~~~ the House


Rudolph-the-Red-Nosed-Reindeer-christmas-movies-3172792-1080-720

The Senate stands adjourned sine die under the provisions of H.Con.Res.125 until 12:00 noon on Tuesday, January 6, 2015.

Following the prayer and pledge and following the presentation of the certificates of election and the swearing-in of elected Members, there will be a required live quorum.

*******************************************************

Last Floor Action:12/16
12:08:01 P.M. – The Speaker announced that pursuant to the order of the House of today, the House stands adjourned until noon on Friday, December 19, 2014, unless it sooner has received a message from the Senate transmitting its adoption of H. Con. Res. 125, in which case the House shall stand adjourned pursuant to that concurrent resolution. Agreed to without objection.

the other Washington …news in December 2014


PDF of today's Seattle Times front page

No felony charges for SPD cop’s bone-breaking punch of woman

N.Y. Police: Chokehold victim complicit in own death

Voting is a Right NOT a Privilege ~~ 50 yrs ~~ The Struggle continues


Time to pass the VRA … update redistricting rules and make it easier for ALL Americans to VOTE

Dear @ChiefJusticeRoberts

Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” -George Santayana

 

On March 7, 1965, hundreds of brave unarmed nonviolent women and men dared to March for African Americans right to vote.

The fact is that less than 1% of eligible Blacks could vote or register to vote.

People organized a Peaceful Protest March from Selma to the state capitol in Montgomery. However, as those protesters crossed the Edmund Pettus Bridge to Montgomery. The police, some riding horses were ready for violence decided to engage in excessive use of force, which included brutally beating protesters with billy clubs, others sprayed water as well as tear gas at these kids, while journalists and photographers witnessed.

The brutal reaction by the police was not only caught on tape it forced then President Johnson, who was once against civil rights programs as a Senator to call on Congress for equal voting rights for all on March 15.

SelmaMarch

The Voting Act of 1965 was signed into law on August 6; is a landmark piece of national legislation in the United States that outlawed discriminatory voting practices that had been responsible for the widespread disenfranchisement of African Americans in the U.S.

A day that started out peacefully quickly descended into an awful ugly March of death for the right to vote called ,”Bloody Sunday”.

Now, some 48 years later, a new “Jim Crow” era has emerged with a major step backward in the fight for civil and voting rights. There are conservative states targeting not only African Americans but also Senior citizens, first time voters, early voting, Students, low income, immigrants and the undocumented though Republicans call them (illegals) Dreamers. In addition, Governors from RedStates are allowing election officials to purge voters, people without birth certificates were given limited or completely denied access to the voting booth failing to meet new voter ID regulations in time and were treated like possible (illegals). This  is the 21st Century; we should be on a progressive path toward equality for all not one that will re-engage folks in the act of racism or exclusion leading to suppressing participation in the election process. This year, new stricter voter ID legislation is pending in thirty-one states. This includes, voter ID proposals in thirteen states with proposals to strengthen existing voter ID laws in ten states, and eight states that will amend the new voter ID laws passed in 2011.

We need to push back  on all attempts to suppress the right to Vote.

With so much at stake, it is time to stop sitting on the sidelines. If we are going to succeed, Conservative lawmakers NEED to hear our Voices.

We cannot let the naysayers turn back the clock on Voting Rights or the next generation.

Thank You for Taking Action

     Takeaction2

SWAY … Still might be some tickets left for today … Dec.21st


SWAY: A dance Trilogy ends Tonight …

Check to see if tickets are still available for the last day of this …

Dance Trilogy

Maksim Tony Val … SWAY

LIVE ~~ (Westbury NY) ~~ LIVE

Is Back!

TumblrSWAYtumblr_ngdsqziIsq1te8hhso3_250

For More info and or Tickets go to : (http://dancewithmeusa.com/sway/)

LIVE ~~ (Westbury NY) ~~ LIVE

I Heard that Maksim and Meryl’s SWAY was beyond words …

************

Zendaya & Val SWAY: Sunday, December 21, 2014 1:00pm
 
Zendaya & Val SWAY: Sunday, December 21, 2014 7:30pm
 

 Bonus: VIP ticket holders will meet the cast and receive 18×24 inch poster autographed by the stars of the show!

 

 

  Get ready for some great Dancing Skating and Music for our Holiday 2014 through Spring 2015!

Could we get meryl&maks skating and or dancing to great music on or back on National TV ?

  For someone who has been a movement participant since forever, an athlete and sports enthusiast along with some dance training, it was a treat to find a show that focused on a genre of dance that was popular but seemingly underground unless you knew where to go, hot, but not so much here in the states unless you knew where to go, suddenly on national TV. I have followed, been a fan, been frustrated with dwts, dumped it, tuned in again and had some not so good things to say, but dwts season18 2014 was beyond fun to watch.  A show the whole family can watch with a lot of conversation and as some of the contestants&pros shed lbs., it makes you want to move a bit more. Yes, we viewers have a whole lot of attitude about some dwts drama, but I think that is definitely a part of the producers agenda baked in …and viewers response never cease to disappoint. We get locked in, over react or join up to try and make our votes count!… geez, I mean come on( in my best Bruno Tonioli) voice and this year was no different. I am and have been what folks call a “Maks fan” even before melb. and when they did not win I stopped watching until Season16.  In Season 16, there not only were more willing people of colour participating, the youngest competitor ever seemingly brought dwts back and younger viewers tuned in, ok, the end result was awful and I stopped tuning in on the regular until rumors of maks being on the show again kept popping up. The Maks and Meryl partnership was/is amazing, wonderfully, seemingly personal and fun. As we all watched their friendship progress we saw what happens when connections on the dance floor are made, seem raw, real, effect affect the masses that put smiles, tears and love in the hearts of those who appreciate dance, contests and maybe some drama made us viewers vote for this fabulous partnership/couple.

 I loved meryl and maks together, hope their partnership …is continued and look forward to seeing future dance or any project(sss) from them …

I have to admit that dwts shows prior to melb and after were not that exciting, maybe because  not many entertainers of colour were participating not to mention the fact that the pros were great but few were people of colour let alone not originally from the US and while the optics were odd … Those “things” became less important once the dances began.  I love that the dancers have to earn their pro positions while in troupe … experience matters

Anyway, Congrats to Meryl & Maks, the 2014 dwts winners! so deserved!

watch this space … As more dance more music skating and more charity events come from this partnership!

 

Weekly Address: America’s Resurgence Is Real


Weekly Address: America’s Resurgence Is RealIn this week’s address, the President reflected on the significant progress made by this country in 2014, and in the nearly six years since he took office.

This past year has been the strongest for job growth since the 1990s, contributing to the nearly 11 million jobs added by our businesses over a 57-month streak. America is leading the rest of the world, in containing the spread of Ebola, degrading and ultimately destroying ISIL, and addressing the threat posed by climate change. And earlier this week, the President announced the most significant changes to our policy towards Cuba in over 50 years.

America’s resurgence is real, and the President expressed his commitment to working with Congress in the coming year to make sure Americans feel the benefits.

Watch the President’s Weekly Address now.

Watch the President's Weekly Address.

Top Stories
A Look Back at 2014As 2014 winds down, President Obama stopped by the press briefing room in the White House yesterday to offer his thoughts on what the past year has meant for the country.

“I said that 2014 would be a year of action and would be a breakthrough year for America,” he said. “And it has been.”

If you missed the President’s news conference, check it out here:

Watch the President's news conference here.

READ MORE

Charting a New Course on Cuba

The United States and Cuba are separated by no more than 90 miles of water, but an ideological and economic barrier has hardened between our two countries for the past 50 years. On Wednesday, however, President Obama announced historic new steps to chart a new course in our relations with Cuba.

“Today, America chooses to cut loose the shackles of the past so as to reach for a better future — for the Cuban people, for the American people, for our entire hemisphere, and for the world,” he said.

Learn more about the Cuba announcement here.

Take a deep-dive into the President’s historic actions at WhiteHouse.gov/Cuba-policy.

READ MORE

President Obama Visits the Troops, “Just to Say Thank You”

On Monday, the President traveled to Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst in New Jersey to offer his thanks to the U.S. military members and families stationed there and across the world for their service to our country.

“The message I’m here to deliver on behalf of the American people is very simple,” he said. “It’s just to say thank you.”

See the President's full remarks here.

The President also marked an important milestone: After more than 13 years, we are finally bringing a responsible end to America’s war in Afghanistan.

When the President took office, we had nearly 180,000 troops in Iraq and Afghanistan. By the end of this month, we’ll have fewer than 15,000 in both countries. Over the course of six years, we have brought home 90 percent of our troops. And this month, Afghans will take full responsibility for their security.

READ MORE

As always, see more of the week’s events in the latest edition of West Wing Week.

U.S. and Cuba


The White House, Washington

 

Yesterday, after more than 50 years, we began to change America’s relationship with the people of Cuba.

We are recognizing the struggle and sacrifice of the Cuban people, both in the U.S. and in Cuba, and ending an outdated approach that has failed to advance U.S. interests for decades. In doing so, we will begin to normalize relations between our two countries.

I was born in 1961, just over two years after Fidel Castro took power in Cuba, and just as the U.S. severed diplomatic relations with that country.

Our complicated relationship with this nation played out over the course of my lifetime — against the backdrop of the Cold War, with our steadfast opposition to communism in the foreground. Year after year, an ideological and economic barrier hardened between us.

That previous approach failed to promote change, and it’s failed to empower or engage the Cuban people. It’s time to cut loose the shackles of the past and reach for a new and better future with this country.

I want you to know exactly what our new approach will mean.

First, I have instructed Secretary of State John Kerry to immediately begin discussions with Cuba to re-establish diplomatic relations that have been severed since 1961. Going forward, we will re-establish an embassy in Havana, and high-ranking officials will once again visit Cuba.

Second, I have also instructed Secretary Kerry to review Cuba’s designation as a State Sponsor of Terrorism — a review guided by the facts and the law. At a time when we are focused on threats from ISIL and al Qaeda, a nation that meets our conditions and renounces terrorism should not face such a sanction.

Third, we’ll take steps to increase travel, commerce, and the flow of information to — and from — Cuba. These steps will make it easier for Americans to travel to Cuba. They will make it easier for Americans to conduct authorized trade with Cuba, including exports of food, medicine, and medical products to Cuba. And they will facilitate increased telecommunications connections between our two countries: American businesses will be able to sell goods that enable Cubans to communicate with the United States and other countries.

Learn more about the steps we’re taking to change our policy.

These changes don’t constitute a reward or a concession to Cuba. We are making them because it will spur change among the people of Cuba, and that is our main objective.

Change is hard — especially so when we carry the heavy weight of history on our shoulders.

Our country is cutting that burden loose to reach for a better future.

Thank you,

President Barack Obama

Exciting News to Share … Nina Turner


Team Turner -

I’ve heard from so many of you since Election Day, and I want you to know how much I appreciate your heartfelt words of encouragement and your interest in my future plans. And thanks to each and every one of you – your emails, your phone calls, your hand shakes, and your five and ten dollar donations – I was reminded that although my campaign for Secretary of State came to a disappointing end, the struggle for which we all collectively toiled did not end.

In fact, almost four weeks ago David Pepper and I came together as a team to campaign for our shared vision of how to best lead the Ohio Democratic Party moving forward (see below for details).

I’m excited to share with you that on Tuesday, December 16, the Pepper-Turner vision for the future of our Party was embraced, and David was officially elected as Chair of the Ohio Democratic Party!  I will serve as the Chair of David’s Leadership Team – an ad hoc committee tasked with overseeing the development of a strategic plan to rebuild our infrastructure from the ground up and win elections every year.

All of the Democratic values for which I fought as a State Senator and candidate for Secretary of State matter now more than ever. And your grassroots support, your people power, and your engagement in this process matters just as much as it did during my campaign.

We did not get here on our own, and we can not move forward without you.  We can not fight for a better Ohio, for a better nation and for a stronger democracy without you by our side.       

I wish you a very joyous holiday season and look forward to continuing our journey towards progress in the new year!

All the very best,
Nina
P.S. Please see below for the shared vision David and I have for the Party moving forward.

daily kos recommends … Dick Cheney


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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