Mar 2, 2017

Finance Committee approves Seema Verma for CMS chief

AP file photo

The Senate Finance Committee approved Seema Verma's nomination as the administrator of the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services on Thursday. She still has to be confirmed by the full Senate. It was a party-line vote.

Before the vote , Sen. Ron Wyden, the top Democrat on the committee, expressed concern over what he perceived as lack of clarity over her policy beliefs. "I think we're basically in the dark with respect to any sense of how Ms. Verma would pursue these issues, and you need that information to make judgments," Wyden said Wednesday.

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In photos: India welcomes president with massive "Namaste Trump" rally

India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi embraces President Trump upon his arrival at Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel International Airport in Ahmedabad on Monday. Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump arrived with members of the U.S. first family at Sardar Vallabhbhai International Airport in Ahmedabad, India, Monday for a two-day visit, local media footage shows.

Why it matters: The countries are forging deeper ties as India’s location, size and economic growth making it the "obvious counterweight to China" for American policymakers, per Axios' Dave Lawler and Zachary Basu. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is demonstrating the importance of the visit by holding a massive "Namaste Trump Rally" at the world's largest cricket stadium in Ahmedabad, northwest India.

See imagesArrowUpdated 26 mins ago - World

Concern over coronavirus spread: Italy, South Korea and Iran report more cases

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

The number of novel coronavirus cases in South Korea, Italy and Iran jumped on Sunday as infections in mainland China continued to grow, the latest figures show.

The big picture: As South Korea and Italy stepped up emergency measures amid rising case numbers, World Health Organization officials expressed concern about infections with no clear link to China. COVID-19 has killed at least 2,619 people and infected almost 80,000 others, with all but 27 deaths occurring in mainland China.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 3 hours ago - Health

Sanders reveals free childcare plan for preschoolers

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders speaks during a campaign rally on Saturday in El Paso, Texas. Photo: Cengiz Yar/Getty Images

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders announced on CBS' "60 Minutes" Sunday a new plan to guarantee free child care and pre-kindergarten to all American children from infancy to age four.

Details: In the wide-ranging interview, Sanders told Anderson Cooper he planned to pay for universal childcare with a wealth tax. "It's taxes on billionaires," he said.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 4 hours ago - Politics & Policy