A rewind of the top political news stories

From the Republican takeover of Congress and Obama’s action on immigration to the protests in Ferguson and the Ebola panic in the United States, there was plenty of political action last year. SEE ALSO: Year in review: Top moments that defined immigration reform for 2014 Here’s a look back at some of the biggest political news stories of 2014. GOP takeover of Congress November 4 was a big election night for Republicans. They reclaimed the Senate majority after picking up nine Senate seats. They also gained 13 seats in the House, giving the GOP its largest majority in decades. Republicans are already gearing up to push for a number of legislations, but President Obama reminded Republicans earlier this month that he still has the power to veto any bill he doesn’t support. Obama acts on immigration President Obama announced a series of executive actions on immigration. His actions include ramping up border security, reforming the legal immigration system, and granting temporary protection from deportation and work permits to millions of undocumented immigrants. Several polls found Latinos overwhelmingly support the president’s move. Meanwhile, Republicans were infuriated and accused the president of overreaching his executive authority. U.S. and Cuba restore ties Obama shocked many people when out of nowhere he announced that the United State would restore diplomatic relations with Cuba. What was also surprising was the role Pope Francis and the Vatican played in helping broker the U.S.-Cuba deal, which also included the release of U.S. citizen Alan Gross who had been jailed in Cuba for five years. The move is seen as the biggest shift in U.S. relations with Cuba in more than five decades. Jeb Bush running for president? Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, who’s married to a Mexican native, announced earlier this month through Facebook that he has decided to “actively explore the possibility of running for president of the United States.” Now many are wondering if Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) will still run for president. That’s because Rubio considers Bush a mentor, and they both share many of the same supporters and financial backers. Cantor’s shocking primary loss In what’s considered one of the biggest political upsets in years, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor lost his primary election in June to an economics professor, Dave Brat, who often criticized Cantor for his stance on immigration. Brat came out on top with 56 percent of the vote, compared to Cantor’s 44 percent. The news shocked many on Capitol Hill. Cantor is now working for a Wall Street investment bank. Michael Brown and Eric Garner deaths Protests erupted following the shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown in Missouri and the chokehold death of a 43-year-old Eric Garner in New York. In both cases, the police officers who killed the two unarmed black men were not indicted, which sparked debate over police brutality and racial profiling. The cases also grabbed the attention of Obama, who in November announced new steps his administration is taking to strengthen relations between local police and communities. Millions sign up for Obamacare Despite the embarrassing rollout of the president’s health care law, millions now have access to health insurance. Health and Human Service Secretary Sylvia Burwell said Tuesday that as the year 2014 closes out, it’s estimated that nearly 6.5 million people signed up for health insurance through the federal health insurance marketplace. It is also estimated that 8 percent of those who’ve signed up for health insurance are Latinos. Ebola reaches the U.S. The World Health Organization had been reporting on the Ebola outbreak in West Africa since March. But it took until September, when Thomas Eric Duncan became the first person in the U.S. to be diagnosed with Ebola, for most Americans to take notice of the outbreak. Duncan died on Oct. 8, and two nurses who treated him also caught the virus. That created an Ebola panic in the U.S. that eventually waned when the nurses—and a doctor who also caught the virus—were cured. The rise of ISIL The rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), which is responsible for the killing of three Americans, mobilized the U.S. to take military action and to rally other countries to join the fight. In August, Obama announced the U.S. would launch airstrikes against ISIL targets in Syria. Three months later, 3,000 troops were sent to Iraq to help fight off ISIL. Some experts say it could take years before ISIL is defeated and destroyed. CIA torture report The CIA torture report released in December by the Senate Intelligence Committee disclosed new details about the torture practices used after the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The report revealed the CIA’s interrogation practices were more brutal than the agency portrayed. It included waterboarding, sleep deprivation, rectal feeding and death threats. CIA head John Brennan defended the torture report, saying the interrogation technique “provided information that was useful” and ultimately helped in the operation to kill Osama bin Laden. SEE ALSO: Why Jeb Bush will be the first ‘Latino’ presidentThe post A rewind of the top political news stories appeared first on Voxxi.

From the Republican takeover of Congress and Obama’s action on immigration to the protests in Ferguson and the Ebola panic in the United States, there was plenty of political action last year.

SEE ALSO: Year in review: Top moments that defined immigration reform for 2014

Here’s a look back at some of the biggest political news stories of 2014.

GOP takeover of Congress

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky joined by his wife celebrates with his supporters at an election night party in Louisville, Ky., on Tuesday, Nov. 4, 2014. The elections resulted in Republicans taking control of both chambers of Congress. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

November 4 was a big election night for Republicans. They reclaimed the Senate majority after picking up nine Senate seats. They also gained 13 seats in the House, giving the GOP its largest majority in decades. Republicans are already gearing up to push for a number of legislations, but President Obama reminded Republicans earlier this month that he still has the power to veto any bill he doesn’t support.

Obama acts on immigration

President Barack Obama signs two Presidential Memoranda associated with his Executive Actions on immigration in his office on board Air Force One in Las Vegas, Nevada, November 21, 2014. (Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images)
President Barack Obama signs two Presidential Memoranda associated with his Executive Actions on immigration in his office on board Air Force One in Las Vegas, Nevada, November 21, 2014. (Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images)

President Obama announced a series of executive actions on immigration. His actions include ramping up border security, reforming the legal immigration system, and granting temporary protection from deportation and work permits to millions of undocumented immigrants. Several polls found Latinos overwhelmingly support the president’s move. Meanwhile, Republicans were infuriated and accused the president of overreaching his executive authority.

U.S. and Cuba restore ties

A Cuban wearing a t-shirt with an image of a US flag walks in a street of Havana, on December 18, 2014. A series of measures that President Barck Obama announced on Wednesday could boost economic exchanges as the United States and Cuba are moving to restore diplomatic relations. (Adalberto Roque/AFP/Getty Images)
A Cuban wearing a t-shirt with an image of a US flag walks in a street of Havana, on December 18, 2014. A series of measures that President Barck Obama announced in December could boost economic exchanges as the United States and Cuba are moving to restore diplomatic relations. (Adalberto Roque/AFP/Getty Images)

Obama shocked many people when out of nowhere he announced that the United State would restore diplomatic relations with Cuba. What was also surprising was the role Pope Francis and the Vatican played in helping broker the U.S.-Cuba deal, which also included the release of U.S. citizen Alan Gross who had been jailed in Cuba for five years. The move is seen as the biggest shift in U.S. relations with Cuba in more than five decades.

Jeb Bush running for president?

Jeb Bush says he's exploring the possibility of running for president.
Jeb Bush announced in December via Facebook that he will “actively explore the possibility of running for president of the United States.” (Photo by Andy Jacobsohn/Getty Images)

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, who’s married to a Mexican native, announced earlier this month through Facebook that he has decided to “actively explore the possibility of running for president of the United States.” Now many are wondering if Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) will still run for president. That’s because Rubio considers Bush a mentor, and they both share many of the same supporters and financial backers.

Cantor’s shocking primary loss

Congressman Eric Cantor, R-Va., stands beside his wife Diana, left, and delivers a concession speech at his election night party in Richmond, Va., Tuesday, June 10, 2014. Cantor lost the GOP primary to tea party candidate Dave Brat. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)
Rep. Eric Cantor, R-Va., stands beside his wife Diana, left, and delivers a concession speech at his election night party in Richmond, Va., Tuesday, June 10, 2014. Cantor lost the GOP primary to tea party candidate Dave Brat. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

In what’s considered one of the biggest political upsets in years, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor lost his primary election in June to an economics professor, Dave Brat, who often criticized Cantor for his stance on immigration. Brat came out on top with 56 percent of the vote, compared to Cantor’s 44 percent. The news shocked many on Capitol Hill. Cantor is now working for a Wall Street investment bank.

Michael Brown and Eric Garner deaths

People raise their hands in the middle of the street to protest the killing of Michael Brown by a police officer. Meanwhile, police officers wearing riot gear move toward their position trying to get them to disperse on Monday, Aug. 11, 2014, in Ferguson, Mo. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)
People raise their hands in the middle of the street to protest the killing of Michael Brown by a police officer. Meanwhile, police officers wearing riot gear move toward their position trying to get them to disperse on Monday, Aug. 11, 2014, in Ferguson, Mo. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Protests erupted following the shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown in Missouri and the chokehold death of a 43-year-old Eric Garner in New York. In both cases, the police officers who killed the two unarmed black men were not indicted, which sparked debate over police brutality and racial profiling. The cases also grabbed the attention of Obama, who in November announced new steps his administration is taking to strengthen relations between local police and communities.

Millions sign up for Obamacare

It’s estimated that nearly 6.5 million people signed up for health insurance through the federal health insurance marketplace as of December 2014. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
It’s estimated that nearly 6.5 million people signed up for health insurance through the federal health insurance marketplace as of December 2014. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Despite the embarrassing rollout of the president’s health care law, millions now have access to health insurance. Health and Human Service Secretary Sylvia Burwell said Tuesday that as the year 2014 closes out, it’s estimated that nearly 6.5 million people signed up for health insurance through the federal health insurance marketplace. It is also estimated that 8 percent of those who’ve signed up for health insurance are Latinos.

Ebola reaches the U.S.

This undated file image made available by the Center for Disease Control shows the Ebola Virus. (AP Photo/CDC, File)
This undated file image made available by the Center for Disease Control shows the Ebola Virus. (AP Photo/CDC, File)

The World Health Organization had been reporting on the Ebola outbreak in West Africa since March. But it took until September, when Thomas Eric Duncan became the first person in the U.S. to be diagnosed with Ebola, for most Americans to take notice of the outbreak. Duncan died on Oct. 8, and two nurses who treated him also caught the virus. That created an Ebola panic in the U.S. that eventually waned when the nurses—and a doctor who also caught the virus—were cured.

The rise of ISIL

Kashmiri demonstrators hold up a flag of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) during a demonstration against Israeli military operations in Gaza, in downtown Srinagar on July 18, 2014. (Tauseef Mustafa/AFP/Getty Images)
Kashmiri demonstrators hold up a flag of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) during a demonstration against Israeli military operations in Gaza, in downtown Srinagar on July 18, 2014. (Tauseef Mustafa/AFP/Getty Images)

The rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), which is responsible for the killing of three Americans, mobilized the U.S. to take military action and to rally other countries to join the fight. In August, Obama announced the U.S. would launch airstrikes against ISIL targets in Syria. Three months later, 3,000 troops were sent to Iraq to help fight off ISIL. Some experts say it could take years before ISIL is defeated and destroyed.

CIA torture report

Director of Central Intelligence Agency John Brennan takes questions from reporters during a press conference at CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia, December 11, 2014. He acknowledged some agency interrogators used 'abhorrent' unauthorized techniques in questioning terrorism suspects after the 9/11 attacks. (Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images)
Director of Central Intelligence Agency John Brennan takes questions from reporters during a press conference at CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia, December 11, 2014. He acknowledged some agency interrogators used ‘abhorrent’ unauthorized techniques in questioning terrorism suspects after the 9/11 attacks. (Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images)

The CIA torture report released in December by the Senate Intelligence Committee disclosed new details about the torture practices used after the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The report revealed the CIA’s interrogation practices were more brutal than the agency portrayed. It included waterboarding, sleep deprivation, rectal feeding and death threats. CIA head John Brennan defended the torture report, saying the interrogation technique “provided information that was useful” and ultimately helped in the operation to kill Osama bin Laden.

SEE ALSO: Why Jeb Bush will be the first ‘Latino’ president

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