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Florida sits on $900M in aid while storm victims wait
HUD's disaster recovery grants are slow to go where they're needed
politico.com
California Woman Dies After Getting Caught In Raisin Processing Machine
Yaneth Lopez Valladares was working at the Del Rey Packing plant in Sanger, near Fresno, in California. She was pronounced dead at the scene.
newsweek.com
Powerful lawmakers join effort to kill surveillance program protected by Trump administration
NSA phone snooping system leaked by Snowden is on the rocks with Republicans and Democrats.
politico.com
Trump's legal team to launch unbridled attack on Biden
“Believe me, you'll hear about that issue,” Jay Sekulow says.
politico.com
Forget impeachment. Republicans fear Ukraine revelations could spill into election.
It’s not impeachment that’s worrying Republicans. It’s the months of steady revelations about the Ukraine saga that could follow.
politico.com
Former US Rep. Pete Stark, California Dem who helped draft ObamaCare legislation, dies at 88
Former U.S. Rep. Pete Stark, an outspoken progressive California Democrat who was an anti-war activist, died at his home in Maryland on Friday at age 88, his family said.
foxnews.com
Virus anxieties cast shadow over Year of the Rat festivities
Chinese communities in Australia and New Zealand were among the first to greet the Year of the Rat on Saturday but Lunar New Year celebrations globally were marred by anxieties about the virus outbreak that has disrupted festivities in China.
reuters.com
Trump's legal team to begin defense arguments at U.S. Senate impeachment trial
Lawyers for U.S. President Donald Trump will begin his defense at the Senate impeachment trial on Saturday, offering a rebuttal to Democratic charges that he abused his power and previewing more detailed arguments planned for next week.
reuters.com
How Super Sniffer Dogs Are Helping Detect Disease Around The World
Our canine buddies can do more than play fetch. Turns out dogs' incredible sense of smell is a secret weapon in medicine.
npr.org
Hong Kong Leader Declares Coronavirus Emergency And Halts Official Trips to China Mainland
As of Friday, five confirmed cases of the coronavirus infection had been identified in Hong Kong.
newsweek.com
Macron pleads with Trump not to cut off U.S. support for French forces in Africa
The White House may stop helping France fight African jihadis with drones and refueling planes. Experts say that could open the door to more terrorism.
Politica
United Nations rules Myanmar must protect Rohingya Muslims
Simon Adams, Executive Director for the Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect, joins CNN International to discuss the UN's historic court ruling that Myanmar must prevent genocide
edition.cnn.com
This fall-apart roasted pork shoulder with rosemary and garlic is the weekend meal your family craves
When it's dark and dreary outside, a communal family dinner with roast pork, sweet potato fries, green beans and brownies for dessert feels like a little oasis in the cold.
Economie
Grow your likes: the unstoppable rise of the Insta plant
They’re green, photogenic and social media starsInstagram may well have changed the way you garden, even if you don’t have an account. From the plants you buy – and where you buy them – to the gardens you visit, the platform has driven a profound change in the tastes and habits of even established gardeners, not to mention encouraging a new generation of green fingers.Plants have been inspiring artists for hundreds of years, so they are well suited to the photo app. A younger generation (urban, cash-strapped, Insta-obsessed and renting) are driving houseplant sales, sharing pictures of their plant babies instead of the human ones they can’t afford. From the dramatic structure of mother-in-law’s tongue to blousy tea roses, you can say a lot about your taste through the species you share. Connecting with nature reduces stress, much needed in these chaotic times; even bursts of online greenery, amid Instagram’s sometimes frantic commercialism, are a tonic. Continue reading...
1 h
Economie
'Kids are taking the streets': climate activists plan avalanche of events as 2020 election looms
Young demonstrators aim to make the climate crisis a central issue of the presidential campaignOrganizers in the youth climate movement plan an avalanche of activities beginning next week, determined to make the future of the climate the major issue of the 2020 election.Capitalizing on turnout in the September climate strikes, when 6 million people worldwide turned out to demand urgent action to address the escalating ecological emergency, young US organizers are making the leap from mobilization to demands. They’re planning widespread voter activation in the 2020 US presidential election as well as direct action targeting the fossil fuel industry and the banks and politicians that enable it. Continue reading...
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Politica
Letters to the Editor: Presidents need to do three essential things. Trump doesn't do any of them
Does Trump act like a servant of the people? Does he accept expert advice? Is he surrounded by people who might disagree with him?
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latimes.com
Letters to the Editor: City Hall has problems to solve. The Dodgers being cheated isn't one of them
Homelessness, traffic and any number of other problems in L.A. take precedence over the Dodgers being cheated in the World Series.
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latimes.com
Karen Pence: The Trump-Pence administration is working tirelessly for America's veterans and military families
No experience I've had as second lady of the United States has been as fulfilling as the opportunity to work with those who have served and sacrificed for this country.
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foxnews.com
Letters to the Editor: Adam Schiff's rousing defense of American democracy will be impeachment's legacy
Rep. Adam Schiff reminded senators that unless they value what is right and legal and hold Trump accountable, our constitutional system will be lost.
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latimes.com
Op-Ed: Alexander Hamilton would have led the charge to oust Donald Trump
Hamilton and the Federalists went against their policy interests to protect the Constitution against a demagogue in 1800.
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latimes.com
Opinion: Bad Democrats, unfair process — readers against impeachment make their case
The overwhelming majority of letter writers have favored impeachment. Those opposed to it have targeted Rep. Adam B. Schiff (D-Burbank) and the process.
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latimes.com
How to unharden our hearts toward homeless people
It's funny how off first impressions can be.
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latimes.com
Amazon, Google personal assistants can handle more chores. Just ask them
About 25% of U.S. consumers use smart speakers like Amazon Echo and Google Home. But the speakers' onboard AI-driven digital assistants can do more.       
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usatoday.com
How do you actually treat Wuhan coronavirus?
Scientists are drawing on past experience with SARS and MERS epidemics to determine the best way to handle the Wuhan coronavirus crisis.       
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usatoday.com
Trump Legal Team to Make Bidens Part of Impeachment Trial Defense, Says Democrats 'Opened the Door'
Over the course of their opening arguments the past three days, the Democratic impeachment managers have sought to dispel the notion of any wrongdoing by the Bidens with regard to Ukraine.
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newsweek.com
Chicago-area cigar lounge shooting: Woman fires at 3 men, killing 1, then kills self, police say
A 51-year-old woman fatally shot a 51-year-old man at a Chicago-area cigar lounge Friday night before turning the gun on herself, according to reports.
1 h
foxnews.com
Wonderkid Håland smashes league record
You might have thought scoring a debut hat-trick might earn you a start in the next game.
1 h
edition.cnn.com
Iraqi security forces raid Baghdad's main protest camp, shoot at demonstrators
Iraqi security forces raided Baghdad's main protest site at Tahrir Square on Saturday, firing live rounds and tear gas at anti-government demonstrators who have camped out there for months, Reuters reporters said.
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reuters.com
Meera Sodha’s recipe for masala baked beans on toast | The new vegan
A frugal-but-fun remix of the classic beans on toast – ideal for lazy lunches or even lazier mornings, with a spicy-sour green chutney on the sideMy mother grew up in relative wealth in Uganda, but entered into poverty when she and her family arrived in the UK after being exiled by the dictator Idi Amin. Having little money meant cooking very thriftily: she made chutney from fallen apples in the garden, bought sacks of lentils and rice from wholesalers, and ate a lot of spiced masala baked beans. Continue reading...
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Economie
The supergiant Betelgeuse star will explode. It's just a matter of when, astronomers say
Betelgeuse, the red supergiant star that acts as the shoulder of Orion in his constellation, is having a moment. Normally one of the brightest stars in the constellation, it's been dimming in brightness since December.
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edition.cnn.com
Wuhan healthcare workers speak of challenges while dealing with coronavirus outbreak
Healthcare workers in the Chinese city of Wuhan say hospitals are running low on supplies as they struggle to cope with the outbreak of the deadly Wuhan coronavirus.
2 h
edition.cnn.com
#AdamSchiffHasMyRespect Trends After Powerful Closing Speech In Impeachment Trial Goes Viral
The California Democrat urged Republican colleagues in the Senate to have the "moral courage" to go against their party and remove Donald Trump from office.
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newsweek.com
Used mascara wands are helping treat and save wild animals
The Appalachian Wildlife Refuge, a North Carolina based non-profit organization, use the soft, compact bristles to gently remove fly eggs, dirt, fleas, ticks and larvae from animals' fur and birds' wings.
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edition.cnn.com
Aaron Hernandez Netflix documentary explores his sexuality, final days: 'Everything came together as a perfect storm'
More than two years after Aaron Hernandez took his life, the former NFL star is the subject of a shocking new documentary.
2 h
foxnews.com
What is the adenovirus?
Dr. Manny discusses how to avoid contracting adenovirus, and what it may mean for your child.
2 h
foxnews.com
Reporting on the Iran nuclear deal: 'nothing happens until everything happens'
Our world affairs editor reflects on how, despite years of negotiations, we came once again to the brink of conflictCountries tend to go to war when diplomacy fails. But Washington and Tehran are now facing off because it succeeded. It was because the 2015 nuclear deal was Barack Obama’s proudest foreign policy achievement that Donald Trump was so determined to destroy it.The US and Iran are sliding back towards the brink of conflict. If a missile had landed a little bit differently in the course of the latest exchange of hostilities, they would probably be at war by now. Continue reading...
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Politica
Intermittent fasting sheds more weight, but Mediterranean still healthier overall, study claims
A major new scientific study suggests the Mediterranean diet is healthier as well as easier to stick with long-term.
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foxnews.com
Chicken wings still a favorite for Super Bowl viewers; Americans to eat a record 1.4 billion during 2020 game
Americans are planning to wing it for the Super Bowl.
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foxnews.com
More Than 800 Asylum Seekers Forced to 'Remain in Mexico' Have Faced Violence as Policy Reaches One-Year Anniversary
Families are sending children across the border alone in the hope they will be allowed into the U.S. as unaccompanied minors and spared the danger of Mexican border towns.
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newsweek.com
Brian Lonergan: Immigration is unquestionably a national security issue. We need to start treating it like one
Immigration is unquestionably a national security issue. We need to start treating it like one.
2 h
foxnews.com
The World Is a Terrifying Place
The Slate Money hosts discuss Clearview, coronavirus, and bushfires.
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slate.com
What Chicago’s Mayor Really Thinks About the Democratic Field
Lori Lightfoot is used to being different: She grew up in a working-class family in a small town in Ohio, where being an African American woman made her constantly underestimated. But those differences—not to mention being openly gay, which itself makes her a trailblazer as a big-city mayor—came together to propel her to a huge win for mayor of Chicago last year, despite being an outsider who had never run for office before.Now she’s running America’s third-largest city.“I get why people have lost confidence not only just in government, but in the governance of people,” Lightfoot told me.The people Democrats are going to need in November are the people she’s been trying to reconnect with in Chicago, she said, and they’re like voters all around the country who have been feeling unseen.“If we lose them, we have no shot at winning the White House,” she said.Lightfoot was circumspect about which candidates she thinks are getting it right and which aren’t—but notably for a politician who doesn’t come from money herself and who is trying to speak for the voters she thinks get left out, she said she’s open to self-funders. She’s happy that the rich Republican businessman Bruce Rauner was booted as governor of Illinois by the even richer Democratic businessman J. B. Pritzker, and has made clear that she’s considering backing Michael Bloomberg in the presidential race.Our full conversation can be heard on the latest episode of the Radio Atlantic podcast.What follows is a condensed and lightly edited transcript.Edward-Isaac Dovere: Being a politician is new for you. How has the adjustment been to becoming one?Lori Lightfoot: I go to places and people say to me, ‘I’ve never met a mayor before. I’ve never seen a mayor in my neighborhood.’ And these are not, you know, teenagers or 20-somethings. These are our elders, people who are 60, 70, or older.Dovere: You grew up in a small town in Ohio, and the injustices you and your family faced there seem to have defined you. What left the greatest impact?Lightfoot: We were the factory workers. We were the people who clean your houses. But being one of the few black families that lived in my neighborhood forever, that definitely left an indelible mark on me. I grew up at a time when racial discrimination was still very much on the top of the table, not under it. And no question that I was denied opportunities solely on the basis of my race.The expectations for me were so low. But that’s not how I viewed my life. And it’s certainly not how my parents, and particularly my mother, viewed my life. The other thing that definitely shaped my experience as a child is watching my father struggle. My father was deaf my entire growing-up years. And seeing how difficult it was for him to be part of just that conversation, be part of a community, and knowing his experience, particularly in the workplace, being denied opportunities because of his disability, being treated differently and worse because he couldn’t hear—that had a profound effect on me.Dovere: We are living through a moment when people are reconsidering what government does, what it should do, whether they can trust the government. Should people distrust the government, based on what you’ve seen?Lightfoot: I certainly understand why people feel that way in the crosscurrents that have been blowing for some time that I think are very much responsible for the election of Donald Trump. I get it. I get why people have lost confidence not only just in government, but in the governance of people. It’s important for us to understand that loss of confidence in public servants and public service, but all the more urgent for us to regain that trust. Our democracy depends upon participation. And as more and more people opt out and feel like government is irrelevant to their lives, that makes the challenges that we have to face and the problems that we have to solve … We have way too many people in public life who feel like they’ve won the lottery and that their primary mission is to make sure that they have a lot of pecuniary gain at the public’s expense.Dovere: President Trump has often taken shots at Chicago. If you could show him the city on a tour, where would you take him?Lightfoot: There’s a lot of great things that are happening if you really want to know who we are as Chicagoans. Then let me take you to neighborhoods outside of the glamour of downtown and show you how Chicagoans are living their lives every day, talk to you about the challenges but also the triumphs of our city. You know, I don’t think he really cares about the facts, but he’s got a very misguided notion of who we are.Dovere: Do you think the Democratic Party nationally is getting that conversation right?Lightfoot: I’m challenging our presidential candidates to think about who we are as a party, what our core values are. And, you know, as a lifelong midwesterner, it’s important to me that the candidates are really speaking the values of the people that made the Democratic Party, the working-class people, the folks in organized labor, and the folks who are worried that their life and the life that their parents had or their grandparents had is slowly slipping away from them and won’t be there for their kids. We have to speak to those folks, because those are the people that we need to show up in huge numbers in November to vote. And if we lose them, we have no shot at winning the White House. But also we run the risk of losing a lot of down-ticket races as well.Dovere: The last two governors of Illinois have both been very rich self-funders—first a Republican, now a Democrat. Self-funding business leaders are now a big part of the presidential race. What, from your experience, is that going to mean on the national level?Lightfoot: I don’t think we will, in the long term, benefit if the only people who can afford to run at the national level, or really at any level, are folks who come with a lot of individual wealth. Wealth doesn’t buy you leadership experience, great ideas, and an ability to navigate difficult policy in political terrain. So I don’t want to see us exclude a whole category of people simply because they can’t go into their own pocket and run for office … Fundamentally, it’s not the wealth that I think is the thing that we should focus on. It’s: Who is the person, what’s her ideas? What’s the track record of being able to make a difference in people’s lives? Do they understand people who don’t come from that kind of massive wealth? What have they done over the course of their lives to really invest themselves in learning about people who come from very different experiences? And what are their ideas about how we create a different kind of vision for families and communities who are struggling?Subscribe to Radio Atlantic:Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Stitcher (How to Listen)
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theatlantic.com
Error and Trial
As the Senate impeachment trial droned on Thursday afternoon, Representative Jerry Nadler, one of the House managers prosecuting President Donald Trump, launched into a long, scholarly lecture on the constitutional remedy for presidential “abuse, betrayal, corruption”—what he called “the ABCs of impeachable offenses.” In the last row of the chamber’s Democratic side, Senators Cory Booker and Kamala Harris sat in forced silence.This is surely not how either big-name Democrat had planned to spend the third week of January: in the political equivalent of their parents’ basement, having flunked out of the presidential race they’d approached with such high hopes last year. Their backbench neighbor, Michael Bennet, who is still running but has long struggled for traction, languished in the same psychic dunce’s row, listening listlessly.[Read: The solemn absurdity of Trump’s impeachment trial]Less than two weeks before the Iowa caucuses, much attention is focused on the three Democratic senators—Bernie Sanders of Vermont, Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, and Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota—who are compelled to be mute, hour after hour, while their top competitors, Joe Biden and Pete Buttigieg, are free to talk up a storm in Dubuque, Des Moines, Davenport, Marshalltown, Mason City, Ames, and Clear Lake, because neither is a sitting senator.But the plight of the 2020 also-rans is in many ways more poignant: They’ve been reduced from addressing rousing rallies and applauding crowds to making quick stand-up hits on cable news and firing off occasional tweets, as junior members of a body where seniority still counts for so much. Even their limited communications privileges have been severely constrained, as Booker effectively acknowledged on Tuesday night when he slid a shiny red apple into the cloakroom cubby reserved for senators’ mobile phones, which are verboten on the floor during the trial. “Last night, Cory Booker decided to rib us iPhone folks with his own real-life apple,” Senator Angus King of Maine tweeted. “But does it stream CNN?”Booker himself may have been rendered deviceless inside the Senate chamber, but his staff has seen to it that he’s doing his best to keep up in the social-media race for attention. Early Thursday afternoon, his communications director, Kristin Lynch, tweeted a link to Booker’s own highlighted annotations of discussions about impeachment at the 1787 Constitutional Convention.For her part, Harris was buttonholed by CNN’s Dana Bash Thursday morning on the balcony of the Russell Senate Office Building and offered her capsule review of the trial, in which Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has so far refused to allow the subpoena of witness testimony and documents. “Bring all the facts so we can determine what happened,” Harris said.Headline news, they’re not making.At the very moment when Booker and Harris are most eager to write their next chapters and look ahead, they are consigned by the rules of the trial into virtual purdah, their ability to communicate directly with viewers and voters—and by extension impress the remaining active candidates who might choose them as running mates—severely impeded. The New York Times reported late Thursday that Harris is considering endorsing Biden, but if true, the trial is hardly the time for her to say so. Moreover, the impeachment arena is one in which Harris—whose sharp, prosecutorial questioning of Trump nominees and appointees is part of what propelled her into presidential contention in the first place—might be expected to excel, except that all senators’ questions for the presidents’ lawyers must be submitted in writing to the presiding officer, Chief Justice John Roberts.So how are the would-have-been presidents feeling?Just before yesterday afternoon’s trial session, Booker was waylaid in the Senate subway by the veteran Republican pollster Frank Luntz and a group of 11 international students. When I asked the senator how it felt to be stuck in Washington and not in Iowa, he fixed me with a mock-hurt gaze and said, “Really? You trying to poke my sadness?” Booker went on, “Look, it’s definitely heartbreaking that things had to end, but at the same time, I cannot escape my gratitude for the experience. It’s been really wonderful.”Moments later, Senator Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut, who sits between Booker and Harris, passed by. “Wish they were somewhere else?” he said with a grin, playing along with my question, before offering a serious reply. “They have been focused totally on the trial,” he said. “I can tell you that all we’ve discussed is the trial, and they’ve both taken notes and they’re both fully and completely attentive to what’s going on.”[Read: Who plays by the rules?]“I’m sure it’s mixed feelings,” Bennet told me with a rueful smile when I caught up with him in the basement of the Capitol Thursday night to ask how he thought Booker and Harris were faring. As for himself, he’s headed to New Hampshire tomorrow to continue fulfilling his promise to hold 50 town-hall meetings, even if his message of commonsense moderation has failed to catch on with fired-up primary voters. He also insisted that his forced attendance at the trial—he frequently stands up to stretch—hasn’t been disappointing.I stood with Bennet as he wolfed down a roast-beef sandwich in a hallway during a quick dinner break. “I think the House managers have presented such a compelling case. I think our democracy is at real risk,” he added, bemoaning McConnell’s refusal to allow a hearing on Barack Obama’s nomination of Judge Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court, and his restrictive rules for the impeachment trial. “If this becomes a permanent state of affairs, this is what ancient observers said would be the end of the republic. We are at risk of having a set of rules that won’t allow the American people to see what the facts are.”Booker’s and Harris’s primary-season comedown is nothing, of course, compared with the fate suffered by sitting senators such as George McGovern, John Kerry, and John McCain, who won their parties’ nomination only to lose the biggest prize in the general election, and returned to Capitol Hill as one humble face among 100. After his losing campaigns for president, Senator Bob Dole liked to joke that he’d slept like a baby: “Every two hours I woke up and cried.”In 1980, Ted Kennedy returned to the Senate after his failed primary challenge to Jimmy Carter. But he was a senior member and chair of the Judiciary Committee, and slipped right back into place, his former aide Bill Carrick recalls. A bigger blow was the Democrats’ loss of the Senate to the GOP in Ronald Reagan’s victory that fall. “Being in the minority for the first time, now that is a transition,” Carrick says. “Of course, he then became the de facto leader of the Reagan opposition in the ’80s.”But dropping out before a single vote was cast still stings, and Booker’s and Harris’s body language in the chamber has seemed to reflect that this week. Booker tends to take notes on his lap, Harris on her desk. Booker rests his chin in his hand; Harris folds her arms across her chest. That’s about the extent of the allowable variations in posture.They appear to be making the best of things. Some Democratic Senate insiders say that Harris, whose once-promising campaign collapsed before Christmas, seems to have resigned herself to the reality that the Senate will be her perch for the time being.When the trial is over, and assuming Bennet will have to drop out of the race after Iowa and New Hampshire, all three senators will certainly be welcome back on the hustings as surrogates and supporters for other candidates, and as united messengers for the eventual nominee in an all-hands-on-deck fight against Trump in November. Booker and Harris, especially, could be essential in motivating the voters of color who are expected to cast more than 40 percent of ballots in the Democratic primaries and caucuses this year, and who will be a vital part of any winning coalition in the fall.“Even in the days since two Mondays ago,” when he dropped out, Booker told me, “the goodness I’ve been hearing from everybody, from people in the media, to Republicans, to Democrats, about how the values we ran with this campaign—so many people have affirmed to me, from all sectors, that [they are] the values our nation needs, especially now.”Spoken like a politician who’s a long way from throwing in the towel.
2 h
theatlantic.com
Here's what a $40,000 Super Bowl ticket will get you
Millions of football fans will descend on Miami for Super Bowl LIV next Sunday, but only 65,000 of them will attend the big game.
2 h
edition.cnn.com
Body-cam footage captures struggle in Bronx that led to fatal police-involved shooting
Body-cam footage of a police-involved shooting that left an unarmed man dead in October was released by the NYPD late Friday — and shows a hectic struggle between three cops and an SUV driver. The video shows the moments that led up to Allan Feliz’s death and shows how a routine traffic stop turned into...
2 h
nypost.com
The President's legal team has the upper hand
Trump's lawyers don't need to get people to pay attention; the status quo is just fine, writes Sarah Isgur.
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edition.cnn.com
China's Wuhan to build second designated hospital to treat coronavirus patients: state media
China's Wuhan city, the centre of the outbreak of the new coronavirus, will build a second dedicated hospital to treat patients, state media the People's Daily reported on Saturday.
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reuters.com
Aggressive Trump defense at impeachment trial expected to begin Saturday
2 h
foxnews.com