Executive orders by Obama to address wage issues

Lacking congressional support to raise wages or end gender pay disparities, President Obama is again imposing his policies on federal contractors, in keeping with presidents’ tradition of exerting their powers on a fraction of the economy they directly control.

Obama will sign an executive order Tuesday barring federal contractors from retaliating against employees who discuss their pay with each other. The order is similar to language in a Senate bill aimed at closing a pay gap between men and women. That measure is scheduled for a vote this week, but is unlikely to pass.

The president also will direct the Labor Department to adopt rules requiring federal contractors to provide compensation data based on sex and race.

He plans to sign the two executive orders during an event at the White House where he will be joined by Lilly Ledbetter, who inspired a pay discrimination law Obama signed in 2009.


Bush discusses factors of making presidential run

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, a Republican, said Sunday he will base his decision on running for president in 2016 on whether he can mount a campaign that would transcend modern-day campaign mechanics, and would do so by the end of the year.

Bush, the second-oldest son of George H.W. Bush and the younger brother of George W. Bush, spoke at an event marking the 25th anniversary of his father’s presidency at the library and museum that bears the patriarch’s name. The event was closed to reporters but moderated by a Fox News anchor, and portions of the event were later broadcast on the network.


Ukraine buildings seized by pro-Russia crowd

Pro-Russia demonstrators on Sunday seized at least three government buildings in industrial cities of eastern Ukraine, which has been plagued by demonstrations in favor of stronger ties to Moscow.


Early in the day several hundred demonstrators carrying Russian flags pushed through a police cordon in front of the regional administration building in Kharkiv, Ukraine’s second-largest city, the UNIAN news agency reported. There were no officials or employees at work in the building and the police refrained from using force to stop the protesters, the report said.

The demonstrators demanded a referendum in the region aimed at joining Russia and called for the release of former riot police officers arrested in Kiev last week.

No one was reported injured in the incidents in Kharkiv and Donetsk.

– From news service reports

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