James McGovern

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Massachusetts Congressman Jim McGovern, a Democrat from the 2nd District, says he is disappointed with the jury’s decision in the George Zimmerman trial. Zimmerman was found not guilty in the shooting death of Florida teenager Trayvon Martin on Saturday night, leading to widespread protests in the days since.

"Trayvon Martin was obviously profiled and I think a terrible tragedy occurred," McGovern tells WAMC. "I’m glad the civil rights department of the Justice Department will be looking into this because I do think at the base of all of this is the issue of civil rights."

Advocates for low-income families in Massachusetts are calling on the state and federal governments to increase funding for fuel assistance programs in the shadow of sequestration.

In a few short days, members of Congress must vote to avoid the series of across-the-board spending cuts known as sequestration, but if not; many programs that benefit the neediest families will have their budgets slashed mid-year.

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Massachusetts Congressman James McGovern  introduced two constitutional amendments this week aimed at campaign finance reform. The amendments are in response to the controversial US Supreme Court “Citizens United” decision that found corporations have the same free speech rights as people.  WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill spoke with Congressman McGovern.