Wednesday, 31 July 2019

When Kamala Harris faced political heat, Delaware's Beau Biden had her back

When Kamala Harris faced political heat, Delaware's Beau Biden had her backUp until Beau Biden's death in 2015, Kamala Harris had a friendship with the Delaware politician — and by extension his father Joe Biden.




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Tim Ryan: Democrats will 'lose 48 states' on a 'Medicare for All' platform

Tim Ryan: Democrats will 'lose 48 states' on a 'Medicare for All' platformRyan called the "Medicare for All" proposals a "potential disaster" for the party.




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Rand Paul offers to send Ilhan Omar to Somalia so she will 'appreciate America more'

Rand Paul offers to send Ilhan Omar to Somalia so she will 'appreciate America more'Republican Sen. Rand Paul said he would offer to buy Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar a ticket to Somalia so she would “appreciate America more.”




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'You're wrong': Sanders, Warren open debate defending health care plan

'You're wrong': Sanders, Warren open debate defending health care planThe two progressives joined forces Tuesday night against more moderate candidates — and the moderators.




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'We're in pain': Family remembers Keyla Salazar, teen killed in Gilroy Garlic Festival shooting

'We're in pain': Family remembers Keyla Salazar, teen killed in Gilroy Garlic Festival shootingFamily and friends held a vigil for Keyla Salazar Tuesday evening, lamenting how a mass shooting at the Gilroy Garlic Festival ended her life at 13.




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Sanctions-hit Iran to cut zeros and rename plunging currency

Sanctions-hit Iran to cut zeros and rename plunging currencyThe government in sanctions-hit Iran on Wednesday approved a plan to remove zeros from the rial and rename the currency -- something its people have long been doing to simplify transactions. "The cabinet today agreed on a bill to eliminate four zeros from the currency and that 'toman' will be our national currency," government spokesman Ali Rabiei told reporters in Tehran. The value of the Iranian rial has hit low after record low since last year.




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How to find out if your data was stolen in the Capital One hack, and what you can do about it (COF)

How to find out if your data was stolen in the Capital One hack, and what you can do about it (COF)If you applied for a Capital One credit card between 2005 and 2019, you might be one of the 100 million people affected.




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'Please stay with me,' kidnapped Romanian girl begged police

'Please stay with me,' kidnapped Romanian girl begged policeThe family of a 15-year-old Romanian girl kidnapped earlier this month and now presumed dead has released recordings of her desperate calls for help to authorities whose handling of the case has caused public outrage and dismissals of officials. A mechanic from Caracal in south Romania has confessed to killing Alexandra Macesanu, who went missing on July 24, and another 18-year-old girl last seen in April. With authorities taking 19 hours to locate Macesanu after she made three calls to the emergency number 112, the case has sparked street protests, the interior minister's resignation, and the firing of some local officials.




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Wake Schools parent sued after criticizing math curriculum

Wake Schools parent sued after criticizing math curriculumA parent whose child goes to a high school in the Wake County Public School System has been sued after criticizing the math curriculum used in the district. "That's kind of scary that this would happen," said another parent.




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Tim Ryan explains he 'wasn't protesting' by not putting his hand on heart during anthem at Democratic debate

Tim Ryan explains he 'wasn't protesting' by not putting his hand on heart during anthem at Democratic debate"Congressman Ryan wasn’t protesting and didn’t mean to make any statement last night in Detroit," read an email from the Ohio lawmaker's campaign.




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Inmates behind Brazil deadly prison riot transferred: official

Inmates behind Brazil deadly prison riot transferred: officialForty-six inmates involved in one of Brazil's deadliest prison riots were being transferred to other jails Tuesday, an official said. At least 57 people were killed on Monday when fighting broke out between rival drug gang factions in the Altamira Regional Recovery Centre in the northern state of Para. Sixteen were decapitated in the hours-long battle, but most died in a fire that engulfed part of the overcrowded facility that used converted shipping containers to house some of the inmates.




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Montana Gov. Bullock attacks Warren's border plan: 'You are playing into Donald Trump's hands'

Montana Gov. Bullock attacks Warren's border plan: 'You are playing into Donald Trump's hands'The Montana governor challenged his progressive rivals on whether migrant border crossings should be decriminalized.




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Antioch father, son charged with sexual abuse of multiple foster children for years

Antioch father, son charged with sexual abuse of multiple foster children for yearsAntioch police have arrested a father and son on charges of sexually abusing multiple children under their care for six years.




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Trump renews attack on black congressman Elijah Cummings and says he should ‘investigate himself’

Trump renews attack on black congressman Elijah Cummings and says he should ‘investigate himself’Donald Trump has attacked a black US congressman about the city of Baltimore for the second time in less than a week.Elijah Cummings, whose congressional district covers approximately half of the Maryland city, should use his role as House Oversight Committee chairman to “investigate himself”, the US president claimed. Billions of dollars sent to tackle crime and boost Baltimore’s economy had been “stolen or wasted”, Mr Trump tweeted. He wrote that the city’s “numbers are the worst in the United States on Crime and the Economy.”He added: “Billions of dollars have been pumped in over the years, but to no avail. The money was stolen or wasted. Ask Elijah Cummings where it went. He should investigate himself with his Oversight Committee!”Mr Trump was criticised over the weekend for saying the congressman’s majority-black district in the Baltimore area was a “rodent infested mess” where “no human being would want to live”.But when he was accused of race-baiting, the president insisted there was nothing racist about his comments.Instead, he accused Mr Cummings of racism.“If racist Elijah Cummings would focus more of his energy on helping the good people of his district, and Baltimore itself, perhaps progress could be made in fixing the mess that he has helped to create over many years of incompetent leadership,” he tweeted. He added: “His radical ‘oversight’ is a joke!”The remarks followed a weekend of attacks against Mr Cummings, who is leading number of congressional investigations into Mr Trump and his administration.Mr Trump claimed that the congressman’s district, which includes Johns Hopkins Hospital, the Social Security Administration and the national headquarters of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, is “considered the worst run and most dangerous anywhere in the United States”.He later accused rival Democrats of trying to “play the race card”.He tweeted: “There is nothing racist in stating plainly what most people already know, that Elijah Cummings has done a terrible job for the people of his district, and of Baltimore itself.“Dems always play the race card when they are unable to win with facts. Shame!”Mr Trump has been repeatedly accused of racism in recent weeks after he attacked four Democratic congresswomen of colour known as “the squad”. He said Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan should leave the US “right now”. He added that if they “hate our country” they can go back to their “broken and crime-infested” countries.All four Democrats are American citizens and only Ms Omar, who arrived in the US from Somalia at the age of seven, was not born in the US. He has also repeatedly attacked Mr Cummings. Earlier this week, he tweeted: “If the Democrats are going to defend the Radical Left ‘Squad’ and King Elijah’s Baltimore Fail, it will be a long road to 2020.”




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U.S. judge tosses Democratic Party lawsuit against Trump campaign, Russia over election

U.S. judge tosses Democratic Party lawsuit against Trump campaign, Russia over electionU.S. District Judge John Koeltl in Manhattan said he could not hear the claims against Russia, which were the focus of the case, because of a legal doctrine called sovereign immunity that shields foreign governments from litigation in the United States.




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Canada police shift manhunt for teen slaying suspects

Canada police shift manhunt for teen slaying suspectsCanadian police said Tuesday they have pulled out of a remote northern town after an intensive search turned up no sign of two fugitive teenagers suspected of killing three people — a college professor, a North Carolina woman and her Australian boyfriend. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police used dogs and drones, helicopters, boats and even a military Hercules aircraft to scour the area around York Landing, Manitoba, but were unable to confirm a possible sighting of the two men reported by members of a neighborhood watch group. Nineteen-year-old McLeod and 18-year-old Schmegelsky have been charged with second-degree murder in the death of Leonard Dyck, a University of British Columbia professor whose body was found last week in British Columbia.




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Trump dismisses Baltimore backlash: 'I am the least racist person anywhere in the world'

Trump dismisses Baltimore backlash: 'I am the least racist person anywhere in the world'President Trump on Tuesday tried to defend his most recent attack on a lawmaker of color, Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., and Baltimore, claiming the city’s African-American residents “really appreciate what I’m doing.”




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Britain to spend an extra $2.6 billion on no-deal Brexit planning

Britain to spend an extra $2.6 billion on no-deal Brexit planningBritain is ramping up preparations for a no-deal Brexit by preparing to spend an extra 2.1 billion pounds ($2.6 billion) to make sure the country is ready to leave the European Union with or without a divorce deal at the end of October. The new government led by Prime Minister Boris Johnson, which took power last week, has pledged to leave the trading bloc without an agreement in three months unless the EU agrees to renegotiate the deal agreed by his predecessor Theresa May. Ministers have warned that one of the most hotly contested elements of the divorce agreement - the Irish border backstop - will have to be struck out if there is to be a deal, something the EU has repeatedly said it won't agree to.




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'Everything changed,' says woman forced to be a child bride in America

'Everything changed,' says woman forced to be a child bride in AmericaAshley Duncan got married on what started out as a typical school day school. She said she didn't realize "how big of a commitment I was making" when her aunt took her to the courthouse.




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Israel approves hundreds of Palestinian homes in West Bank amid reports of US peace plan rollout

Israel approves hundreds of Palestinian homes in West Bank amid reports of US peace plan rolloutIsrael has made an unusual move to approve hundreds of Palestinian homes in the occupied West Bank amid reports the US is preparing to roll out its long-awaited peace plan.  Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel’s prime minister, granted permits for 700 Palestinian houses but tried to appease his Right-wing base by also approving 6,000 housing units for Jewish settlers.   Israel rarely grants building permits to Palestinians and the move was seen as a potential concession to the White House, which is trying to convince Palestinians and Arab states to back its peace initiative.   Jared Kushner, Mr Trump’s son-in-law and top aide on Israeli-Palestinian issues, is expected in Jerusalem this week to discuss the plan with Mr Netanyahu.   The plan remains secret but Israeli newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth reported Mr Trump intends to unveil it at a summit with Arab leaders at Camp David in the coming weeks. A White House official denied that planning for a summit was underway and said Mr Kushner’s team would report back after their trip to Israeli and Arab states before deciding their next move. “No summit has currently been planned,” the official said.  The US unveiled the less controversial economic side of the plan at a conference in Bahrain in June but has not given a timeline for releasing the political side of the plan.  Mr Trump enjoys the pageantry of high-profile international meetings and Camp David, the presidential retreat in Maryland, has often been the site of peace talks between Israel and its neighbours. Expectations for Mr Trump’s peace effort are low. The Palestinians have preemptively rejected the plan, arguing that Mr Trump is heavily biased towards Israel and is not an honest broker.   David Friedman, the US ambassador to Israel, signaled that the White House opposed the idea of an independent Palestinian state, which has long been a demand of both Palestinians and America’s Arab allies.     Mr Friedman instead endorsed Mr Netanyahu’s position that the Palestinians can be granted autonomy but not a state of their own.   “We believe in Palestinian autonomy,” he told CNN. ”We believe that autonomy should be extended up until the point where it interferes with Israeli security."




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Fox News Proves Pete Buttigieg Right That All Democrats Will Be Called Socialists

Fox News Proves Pete Buttigieg Right That All Democrats Will Be Called SocialistsREUTERSDuring Tuesday night’s Democratic presidential primary debate, South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg declared that it is time for Democrats to “stop worrying about what the Republicans will say” because no matter what agenda they embrace, “they’re going to say we’re a bunch of crazy socialists.”Following the debate, a number of conservatives and Republicans on Fox airwaves have already gone out of their way to prove the mayor right.Discussing the debate Tuesday evening on The Ingraham Angle, Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani suggested that former Vice President Joe Biden—who is participating in Wednesday’s debate— may have gotten a boost from the debate before, of course, painting the Democratic field as socialist.“I think Biden probably gains tonight if he can have a decent performance tomorrow night,” he told host Laura Ingraham. “He is the one that naturally people would think of as a moderate, but Biden has been running to pretend that he can out-socialist all of them.”The following hour, Fox News anchor Shannon Bream welcomed Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel to weigh in on the debate. It didn’t take long for the RNC head to invoke socialism.“What you saw from the Democrats tonight is the total socialist plan, takeover of all of our health care with this proposal from Medicare for All,” she groused. “They didn’t know how to pay for it. They were dishonest about the fact that it was would raise taxes on every single American.”The following morning, meanwhile, Fox Business Network anchor Stuart Varney kicked things off on Varney and Co. by mockingly brushing off the notion that there were any centrist candidates on the stage the night before.“Now, the political story of the day, very obviously, the debates,” he declared. “The socialists, Sens. Warren and Sanders, emerged as the clear front-runners, at least for last night. So-called moderates, Klobuchar, Mayor Pete, Delaney, Bullock and Ryan, had very little impact. Beto all but disappeared. Last night, socialism rules!”Later on in the program, Fox News contributor Doug Schoen agreed with Varney that the party is “moving hard left and socialists rule the day,” adding that self-described Democrats like himself traditionally “don’t share socialist principles” and he can’t support Sanders, Warren or “their ilk.”The most glaring example, however, was a Wednesday morning interview with Sen. John Kennedy (R-LA) during Fox News’ America’s Newsroom.Speaking with anchor Bill Hemmer, Kennedy fully rejected any notion that Tuesday’s debate was between progressives and moderates before fully proving Buttigieg’s prophecy correct.“I would remind you that the lesser of two socialists is still a socialist,” the Republican senator exclaimed. “And what I heard last night even from the so-called less liberal candidates—I’m not impugning their integrity—even from the less liberal candidates, I heard a job-killing, soul-crushing socialist agenda.”He added: “The only thing missing was the Cuban national anthem.”Hemmer, meanwhile, ended the brief segment by joking with the Republican lawmaker: “I don’t know how it played in Havana,” he said with a smile. “But I appreciate you coming back today.”There was one die-hard Fox News viewer who was thrilled over Kennedy’s on-air remarks, making sure to amplify them immediately.“‘The lesser of two Socialists is still a Socialist!’ Senator John Kennedy of Louisiana,” President Trump tweeted minutes after Kennedy’s appearance.Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.




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House Dems Near 50 Percent Support for Impeachment Inquiry

House Dems Near 50 Percent Support for Impeachment InquiryA group of five Democratic representatives called on leadership to begin an impeachment inquiry against President Trump Tuesday night, bringing the total number of House Democrats in support of impeachment to 116, just two votes short of reaching the 50 percent threshold.Democratic Representatives Jennifer Wexton of Virginia, Grace Meng and Eliot Engel of New York, Jason Crow of Wisconsin, and Judy Chu of California joined a growing cohort of House Democrats clamoring for an impeachment inquiry in the face of a reluctant leadership wary of the move's potential electoral consequences for the more moderate members of their caucus.Engel, a moderate member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, argued that former special counsel Robert Mueller's testimony last week “provided ample evidence that the president committed obstruction of justice.”“The president abused the power of his office in an effort to stymie a legitimate investigation into his campaign’s involvement with Russia,” Engel said.Meng, meanwhile, struck a more cautious tone, presenting the requested impeachment inquiry as an opportunity to “uncover the truth, and to obtain critical supporting evidence like the grand jury materials and witness testimonies.”Pelosi was unmoved on the question of impeachment following Mueller's testimony, telling reporters she still preferred to continue the many ongoing oversight investigations into the president, and allow the pending legal challenges against the administration to be resolved, before opening an impeachment inquiry.Judiciary Committee chairman Jerry Nadler, who has reportedly privately pressured Pelosi to begin impeachment proceedings, conceded that Trump “richly deserves impeachment” following Mueller's testimony, but questioned whether it was politically pragmatic.“But that’s not the question,” he told reporters. “The question is, can we develop enough evidence to put before the American people?”The mounting support for impeachment comes as the first ads, produced by the liberal advocacy group Need to Impeach and featuring Mueller's testimony to make the case for impeachment, aired across the country.“As much as this president and his administration attempt to cover up the facts, with this ad we are ensuring that Americans hear the facts directly from Mueller,” Nathaly Arriola, executive director of Need to Impeach, said in a Tuesday statement.




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Follow the law, get pulled over: Why a police plan to 'ticket' drivers backfired in Arizona

Follow the law, get pulled over: Why a police plan to 'ticket' drivers backfired in ArizonaTempe Police Department started a "Positive Ticketing Campaign" initiative to hand out Circle K drink coupons for following traffic laws.




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Tuesday, 30 July 2019

Sheriff's deputy turned TV actor charged in wife's murder

Sheriff's deputy turned TV actor charged in wife's murderVeteran Harris Co. Sheriff's deputy charged with murder after wife's shooting in SE Houston.




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The Latest: Wisconsin sheriff draws parallel with Closs case

The Latest: Wisconsin sheriff draws parallel with Closs caseAuthorities in Wisconsin say a man suspected of killing four people may have been imitating the abduction last year of teenager Jayme Closs. Sheriff Jim Kowalczyk said Tuesday that investigators may never know exactly what led to the Sunday attacks. Kowalczyk says German used a shotgun to blast his way into the woman's home, and then shot and wounded her parents.




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Cory Booker Qualifies To Join Third Round Of Democratic Debates

Cory Booker Qualifies To Join Third Round Of Democratic DebatesPresidential candidate Cory Booker has qualified to participate in the third round of Democratic debates, according to his campaign.Booker, a New Jersey senator, passed the threshold of 130,000 unique donors, his campaign said Monday, CNN reported. He had already met the polling requirements for the September debate.More than a quarter of the donors came after the first debate in June, his campaign said.“We’re building this campaign the right way, brick by brick from the grassroots up, and we’re seeing the results of that strategy as we continue to build momentum,” Addisu Demissie, Booker’s campaign manager, told CNN.Booker joins six other Democrats who have qualified for the fall debate, which requires candidates to pass a donor and polling requirement. Former Vice President Joe Biden, Sens. Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders and Kamala Harris will be participating in the third debate. South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg and former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rouke have also qualified for third debate spots.




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Andrew Yang's campaign blasted the DNC for not allowing him to use 2 polls from same source for fall Democratic debates

Andrew Yang's campaign blasted the DNC for not allowing him to use 2 polls from same source for fall Democratic debatesThe Yang campaign was unhappy the DNC only let them use either an NBC/Wall Street Journal poll or an NBC/SurveyMonkey poll but not both.




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Ilhan Omar hits back at Rand Paul with retweet mocking assault on senator

Ilhan Omar hits back at Rand Paul with retweet mocking assault on senatorAfter Sen. Rand Paul offers to buy Rep. Ilhan Omar a ticket to Somalia so she can 'appreciate America more,' the Democrat congresswoman responds with a retweet mocking the violent assault on the Republican senator by a neighbor in 2017.




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South Carolina deputy shoots homeowner through window, body camera shows

South Carolina deputy shoots homeowner through window, body camera showsThe Greenville County Sheriff's Office initially said the South Carolina homeowner was shot after he opened the door and pointed his gun at deputy.




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Dan Coats resignation: Trump values leaders who protect him over those who defend America

Dan Coats resignation: Trump values leaders who protect him over those who defend AmericaBy pushing John Ratcliffe to replace Dan Coats, Trump is signaling, again, that he values leaders who protect him over those who defend America.




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Death toll in Brazil prison massacre rises to 57 with over a dozen decapitated

Death toll in Brazil prison massacre rises to 57 with over a dozen decapitatedSAO PAULO/RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) - A bloody clash between two prison gangs on Monday left at least 57 inmates dead with 16 of them decapitated, authorities in the state of Para said, the latest deadly clash as Brazil's government struggles to control the country's overcrowded jails. Prisoners belonging to the Comando Classe A gang set fire to a cell containing inmates from the rival Comando Vermelho, or Red Command, gang, Para's state government said in a statement. "It was a targeted act," state prison director Jarbas Vasconcelos said in the statement, adding there was no prior intelligence that suggested an attack would take place.




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Jared Kushner owns Baltimore apartments ‘infested’ with rodents, mould and maggots

Jared Kushner owns Baltimore apartments ‘infested’ with rodents, mould and maggotsDonald Trump characterised Elijah Cummings’ Baltimore-based congressional district as a “rodent infested mess” where “no human” would want to live, in a now-viral tweetstorm on Saturday.His criticism rang with a particular irony in Baltimore County, where the president’s son-in-law Jared Kushner owns more than a dozen apartment complexes that have been cited with hundreds of code violations and, critics say, provide sub-standard housing to lower income tenants.In an interview on Saturday, Baltimore County Executive John Olszewski Jr condemned Mr Trump’s comments as “an attack on basic decency”.“It is certainly ironic that the president’s own son-in-law was complicit in contributing to some of the neglect that the president purports to be so concerned about,” Mr Olszewski, a Democrat, added.Kushner Companies, which started operating in Maryland in 2013, has owned almost 9,000 rental units across 17 complexes, many of them in Baltimore County, the Baltimore Sun reported earlier this year.The properties generate at least $90m (£72m) in revenue annually. Mr Kushner stepped down as CEO of the company in 2017, when he became a senior White House advisor.A company spokesperson did not address questions on Sunday about whether the group agreed with Mr Trump’s characterisation of the area, but wrote: “Kushner Companies is proud to own thousands of apartments in the Baltimore area.”In 2017, Baltimore County officials revealed that apartments owned by Kushner Cos were responsible for more than 200 code violations, all accrued in the span of the calendar year.Repairs were made only after the county threatened fines, local officials said, and even after warnings, violations on nine properties were not addressed, resulting in monetary sanctions.In an investigation by the New York Times and Pro Publica published earlier that year, tenants of Kushner Cos properties reported mouse infestations, mould problems and maggots.A private investigator who looked into Mr Kusher’s property management company, Westminster Management, described them as “slumlords”.Christine Taylor, a spokeswoman for the Kushner Cos, asserted at the time that the group was in compliance with all state and local laws.Then-Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz said that was “a stretch of truth”.“We expect all landlords to comply with the code requirements that protect the health and safety of their tenants, even if the landlord’s father-in-law is president of the United States,” added Mr Kamenetz, who died in 2018.Shannon Darrow, a programme manager at the tenant advocacy group Fair Housing Action Centre of Maryland, said on Sunday that she was “appalled” by Mr Trump’s comments about Mr Cummings’s district, which includes about half of Baltimore City, and most of the majority black sections of Baltimore County.She added that she found Mr Trump’s attacks ironic given the legacy of Mr Kushner’s properties in the district.“Basically, [Mr Kushner] has been creating a race to the bottom in terms of poorly maintained properties,” she said. “He’s been very, very deeply implicated.”In the past two years, Kushner Cos and its affiliated entities have been sued multiple times by Baltimore-area residents who allege that the company has charged them excessive fees and used the threat of eviction to pressure them into paying up.From 2013 to 2017, corporate entities associated with Kushner Cos’ apartments requested the civil arrest of 105 former tenants – the highest number among all property managers in Maryland during that period, the Baltimore Sun reported.“It’s been our recent experience that working families have been preyed on at the benefit of Mr Kushner and his company,” Mr Olszewski said.A group of tenants recently attempted to file a class-action lawsuit alleging unlawful rental practices by the company. But their request was denied by a Baltimore Circuit Court judge.Washington Post




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Gang database made up mostly of young black, Latino men

Gang database made up mostly of young black, Latino menBoston police are tracking nearly 5,000 people — almost all of them young black and Latino men — through a secretive gang database, newly released data from the department shows. Black people comprise about 25% of all Boston residents, Latinos about 20% and white people more than 50%. The racial disparity is "stark and troublesome," said Adriana Lafaille, a lawyer for the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts, which, along with other civil rights groups, sued the department in state court in November to shed light into who is listed on the database and how the information is used.




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Iran says US rejected offer as 'not seeking dialogue'

Iran says US rejected offer as 'not seeking dialogue'Iran said on Monday the US had rejected an offer from Tehran for more robust nuclear inspections in exchange for lifting sanctions because Washington is "not seeking dialogue". Under the 2015 nuclear deal agreed to by Tehran, Iran must ratify a document, known as the additional protocol, prescribing more intrusive inspections of its nuclear programme eight years after the deal was adopted. "If the US is really seeking an agreement... Iran can make the additional protocol into law (in 2019) and (the US) at the same time bring a plan to the Congress and lift all illegal sanctions," said foreign ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi.




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Russia says U.S. may be aiming to quit nuclear test ban treaty

Russia says U.S. may be aiming to quit nuclear test ban treatyThe United States may be planning to blame Russian non-compliance as a pretext to pull out of the Comprehensive nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), a Russian diplomat told the Conference on Disarmament, the world's main arms talks forum, on Tuesday. "It would appear that through propaganda around false claims about Russia’s compliance there are attempts to prepare international opinion for a U.S. exit from the CTBT and then to blame Russia again for everything," the Russian diplomat said.




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Trump 'rodent' tweets ring true at Kushner-owned apartments

Trump 'rodent' tweets ring true at Kushner-owned apartmentsDavon Jones doesn't have to look far to see the irony in President Donald Trump's tweets that Baltimore is a "rat and rodent infested mess." His apartment owned by the president's son-in-law has been invaded by mice since he moved in a year ago. Jared Kushner's family real estate firm owns thousands of apartments and townhomes in the Baltimore area, and some have been criticized for the same kind of disrepair and neglect that the president has accused local leaders of failing to address. James says he sees a massive contradiction in Trump's much-publicized tweets laying the blame for Baltimore's poverty, crime and rodent problems on frequent antagonist Maryland Rep. Elijah Cummings.




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Inmates behind Brazil deadly prison riot transferred: official

Inmates behind Brazil deadly prison riot transferred: officialForty-six inmates involved in one of Brazil's deadliest prison riots were being transferred to other jails Tuesday, an official said. At least 57 people were killed on Monday when fighting broke out between rival drug gang factions in the Altamira Regional Recovery Centre in the northern state of Para. Sixteen were decapitated in the hours-long battle, but most died in a fire that engulfed part of the overcrowded facility that used converted shipping containers to house some of the inmates.




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How to Stop Iran’s Maritime Misadventures

How to Stop Iran’s Maritime Misadventures(Bloomberg Opinion) -- European nations, alarmed by Iran’s capture of a British oil tanker, are mounting a response to protect their commercial shipping in the Strait of Hormuz and Persian Gulf. The Royal Navy has started to escort British ships, and a plan for a European naval mission has been endorsed by Denmark, France and Italy.It’s a promising start. But effectively curbing Iran’s misbehavior and safeguarding ships in the region will require a more ambitious —and truly international — effort. Most important, it needs to involve the U.S. Navy.The Europeans are wary of combining their fleets with a nearby American operation for fear of being identified with President Donald Trump’s “maximum pressure” campaign against Iran. France’s foreign minister says a separate effort is needed to reduce tensions and “create the conditions for inclusive regional talks on maritime security.”This is both naïve and shortsighted. A disjointed naval effort increases the likelihood of accidents and miscalculations. It might leave open gaps that could be exploited by the marauding speedboats of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps. And it creates unnecessary quandaries for ship captains: If, say, an American tanker with British nationals aboard were attacked while under U.S. Navy protection, would the HMS Duncan not respond to a call for assistance, for fear its intentions might be misconstrued by the Iranian regime?QuicktakeThe World’s Oil FlashpointFar better to present a united front. By fully joining their resources, the Americans and Europeans would be better able to police sea lanes and respond to provocations. In fact, they should be working together to recruit other countries — India, for instance — into a unified coalition, akin to the multinational task force formed to counter Somali pirates a decade ago. That effort, first headed by the U.S., drastically reduced attacks, helped strengthen local navies and coast guards, and safeguarded commercial traffic and humanitarian missions.Mounting such a response in the Gulf may sound politically difficult. But Europe should remember that the capture of the British ship, the Stena Impero, had essentially nothing to do with the nuclear deal: It was retaliation for the British Navy’s seizure of a vessel carrying Iranian crude to Syria, in contravention of European Union sanctions. Iran should’ve contested the seizure through legal processes. Instead, it’s holding the British ship hostage and demanding as ransom the release of its own tanker — and the freedom to keep sending oil to Syria, in support of the dictator Bashar al-Assad.It’s yet another reminder of how Iran’s misconduct threatens the entire region, and part of a disturbing pattern. In recent weeks, the regime has attacked ships and oil installations, shot down an American drone, restarted its uranium enrichment program, and even test-fired a ballistic missile, all while refusing good-faith efforts at mediation. It’s lashing out in the hopes that it can intimidate the world into doing what it wants.The U.S. and Europe shouldn’t give in to this kind of aggression. They should instead be united in opposing it. The waters of the Persian Gulf would be a good place to start.—Editors: Bobby Ghosh, Timothy Lavin.To contact the senior editor responsible for Bloomberg Opinion’s editorials: David Shipley at davidshipley@bloomberg.net, .Editorials are written by the Bloomberg Opinion editorial board.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.




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'Passive aggression. It's a lifestyle': Ocasio-Cortez responds to a GOP congressional critic

'Passive aggression. It's a lifestyle': Ocasio-Cortez responds to a GOP congressional criticRep. Jody Hice, R-Ga., accused Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of having "deliberately misled the American people" about the treatment of migrants in detention.




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The Latest: Relative identifies 3 of 5 killed in Wisconsin

The Latest: Relative identifies 3 of 5 killed in WisconsinThe father of two of five people found dead in two houses in northwestern Wisconsin has identified two sons and a grandson as among the dead. Authorities say a man shot and killed four people and wounded two others wounded at a home in Lake Hallie on Sunday night and a home in the town of Lafayette on Monday. Ritchie German Sr. of North Prairie, Wisconsin, tells the Star-Tribune of Minneapolis-St. Paul that adult sons Ritchie German Jr. and Douglas German were among the dead, along with Douglas' 8-year-old son, Calvin German.




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Tip on Canada murder suspects turns up empty: police

Tip on Canada murder suspects turns up empty: policeCanadian police on Monday said they have not found two murder suspects in an area of northern Manitoba they had searched for 24 hours after receiving a tip on the teenagers' possible location. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police on Sunday announced they had sent numerous officers to the indigenous community of York Landing to investigate a possible sighting of Kam McLeod, 19, and Bryer Schmegelsky, 18, who are suspects in three murders. The Royal Canadian Air Force also assisted, but "after a thorough & exhaustive search, #rcmpmb has not been able to substantiate the tip in York Landing," Manitoba RCMP said on Twitter.




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Democratic Debate Warning: Former Obama Chief of Staff Says to Avoid 1 Thing

Democratic Debate Warning: Former Obama Chief of Staff Says to Avoid 1 ThingFormer Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel warned Democratic presidential contenders Monday not to “win the nomination in a way that forecloses a path to victory in the general election.”Emanuel, former President Barack Obama’s ex-chief of staff, criticized the candidates’ performances in the first round of Democratic debates in Miami in June.“There’s a reason [President Donald] Trump gleefully tweeted ‘That’s the end of that race!'” Emanuel wrote in a Medium post Monday.“Too often, you succumbed to chasing plaudits on Twitter, which closed the door on swing voters in Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Ohio. If you win the nomination in a way that forecloses a path to victory in the general election, we will lose, and your name will go down in infamy,” he continued.Emanuel’s criticism comes as former Vice President Joe Biden fends off attacks from people even farther to the left accusing him of being weak on civil rights and too tough on crime in the past. But the former mayor warned that the progressive wing of the Democratic Party is being unrealistic in its proposals.




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Police investigate after man says he found baby in freezer

Police investigate after man says he found baby in freezerA St. Louis man says a box that had been in his mother's freezer for decades contained the mummified remains of a newborn baby, which he discovered while cleaning out her home after she died. Adam Smith told St. Louis media outlets that he opened the cardboard box Sunday expecting to find something like the top of his mother's first wedding cake or money because she never had a bank account. St. Louis police confirmed that they are investigating a "suspicious death" involving an "unknown infant" found inside the home and that autopsy results were pending.




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North Carolina school bus driver suspected of setting up hit on student, police say

North Carolina school bus driver suspected of setting up hit on student, police sayDurham police said they believe a school bus driver may have ordered someone to shoot a 17-year-old Northern High School student.




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New York state decriminalizes pot, stops short of Cuomo's legalization call

New York state decriminalizes pot, stops short of Cuomo's legalization call




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Whither Evangelical Purity Culture? Thoughts on the Legacy of a Lost Pastor

Whither Evangelical Purity Culture? Thoughts on the Legacy of a Lost PastorIf you don’t live in Evangelical-world, you probably missed this news. An influential Evangelical author and pastor named Joshua Harris announced on Saturday that he was in the process of “deconstruction.” His statement was clear. “By all the measurements I have for defining a Christian,” he said, “I am not a Christian.” He apologized to the LGBT community for not affirming gay marriage and for the ways that his writing and speaking “contributed to a culture of exclusion and bigotry.”For Christians, it’s a sad statement, but it’s also full of real integrity. Rather than try to jam Christianity into his evolving worldview, he respects orthodoxy by opting out.Harris burst into prominence as a young Christian with every author’s dream: a giant, influential first-book bestseller. It was called I Kissed Dating Goodbye, and it sold almost a million copies. If anything, however, the sales numbers understated its influence. It was part of the foundation of Evangelical “purity culture,” and it revolutionized parenting and dating for countless Christian parents and families.I remember it well. I was a youth pastor for a few memorable months at the height of the courtship craze. The year was 1998, I was a youth volunteer at a small church in Georgetown, Ky., when our youth pastor left. Until we could find a new youth pastor, I was in charge. I preached the youth service every week, I led the youth Sunday school, and I led the youth prayer groups. I was also a commercial litigator in a big law firm, and suddenly I had two full-time jobs. It was one of the best times of my life.But we also had a problem. The youth ministry had gone all-in on purity culture. The previous youth pastor had even declared “no date ’98,” placing a moratorium on every kid in the youth group: not even a single date for the entire year. When it came to relationships, it would be “courtship” (tersely defined as parental-supervised visits and outings) or nothing.This wasn’t wanton repression or cruelty. Many parents had entered adulthood wounded by past broken relationships. They regretted the mistakes of their youth and desperately wanted their kids to avoid similar heartbreak. Also — and this is crucial for understanding purity culture — they fervently believed in a specific earthly reward for their child’s youthful obedience. Courtship represented the best method of ensuring a healthy, sexually vibrant marriage to a faithful spouse.This is what writer Katelyn Beaty called the “sexual prosperity gospel,” an “if/then” transactional relationship with God that manufactures a series of promises from scripture and then creates a form of Christian entitlement and expectation. “I did what you asked, Lord, now may I see my reward?”Beaty’s critique is well taken, and it’s certainly true that purity culture built a series of (often wildly unrealistic) expectations about the marriage relationship that awaited kids who courted. But I think it did something even darker — in its effect (if not its intent), it reversed the gospel message, teaching Christian kids that they risked being defined by their sins, not by Christ.It worked like this — sexual sin stained young persons, even if Christ forgave them. They would walk into marriage diminished in some crucial ways. The white dress, fundamentally, was a lie. And the message wasn’t confined to sexuality. Did you drink? Did you smoke a joint? Each one of those things altered a person’s self-definition. They were no longer “pure.” They could never be “pure” again.All too many times, I saw the despair. A young person would come to me and say, “I screwed up.” They would really mean, “I’m ruined.” Their storybook dreams were dead. A 17-year-old with (God willing) 70 years of life ahead of him would approach me carrying the awful burden of thinking that he had defined his life forever. He was no longer — and never would be — the person he wanted to be.Sometimes the despair would trigger wild rebellion. If they’re “ruined,” then why should they care about obedience? There are two states of being — virgin or not, teetotaler or not — and if you’re not, then you might as well indulge yourself. Other times the despair would trigger constant, nagging guilt and regret. A girl would walk down the aisle to marry a man who loved God and loved her, and she’d feel a shadow on her soul.In point of fact, the gospel message rests first on bad news, then on indescribably good news. The bad news is simple: You were never “pure.” It’s not as if sex or drink or drugs represent the demarcation line between righteous and unrighteous. They are not and were never the “special” sins that created particularly acute separation from God. Yes, they could have profound earthly consequences, but they did not create unique spiritual separation.The indescribably good news is that from the moment of the confession of faith, believers are not defined by their sin. They’re not defined even by their own meager virtues. They’re defined by Christ. Moreover, they find that “for those who love God, all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” This does not by any stretch mean that past sin wasn’t sin — one of my best friends is an eleven-years-sober addict who did dreadful things during his worst days — but it does mean that their past now gives them a unique ability to reach suffering people. Their terrible stories and past pain have been redeemed, transformed into instruments of grace and mercy.One of my first acts as youth pastor was to lift the ban on dating. Ending legalism is not the same thing as sanctioning sin, and I have no idea if there was more or less extramarital sex as a result of the dating ban or the purity rings. But it was incumbent upon me — in the limited time that I had in leadership — to tell the truth, and the truth was that legalism is its own kind of sin. To create burdens where Christ did not is an act of arrogance. It’s deeply harmful. And, sadly, it’s a way of life in all too many Christian churches.Harris has famously repented of his past legalism, and that makes his departure from the faith particularly poignant. He helped define young people by their sin, and then he left. He separated from his wife, and he rejected Christianity itself. He is like an inadvertent arsonist, who flees the burning house rather than helping fight the fire he helped ignite. I’m sad to see him go. I’m sadder still to see the pain he caused when he was present.




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Monday, 29 July 2019

'Stay inside and lock your doors': Tiny Canadian village on lockdown as teenage murder spree suspects spotted scavenging for food

'Stay inside and lock your doors': Tiny Canadian village on lockdown as teenage murder spree suspects spotted scavenging for foodA massive police manhunt has been launched in a remote part of northern Canada for a pair of teenager double murder suspects.The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) has been chasing Kam McLeod, 19, and Bryer Schmegelsky, 18, for weeks since the pair were connected to two separate killings in British Columbia earlier this month.The teenagers have been tracked in a series of stolen cars as they have travelled thousands of miles across Canada, from its Pacific coast in the west all to the way east to rural Manitoba.Police helicopters, a plane, drones, dog units and armed officers have flooded the area around York Landing, a small village in remote northern Manitoba, where a local indigenous neighbourhood watch group had spotted the duo.Officers tweeted residents in York Landing should stay inside and lock all their doors and windows while the heavy police presence searched their community.James Favel from the Bear Clan Patrol, the First Nations group which reported the sighting, said some of his volunteers spotted two young men who matched the description of Mr McLeod and Mr Schmegelsky.The pair immediately stood out in the small, close-knit village while scavenging for food near a dump and ran away as soon as they realised they had been seen, he added.RCMP units had already been searching the nearby town of Gillam and believe the pair have been cornered in this region of rural Manitoba.But the intense police presence was leaving its mark on the locals. “Up here, all the towns and communities, they look like ghost towns,” said Wade Taylor, another volunteer with the Bear Clan Patrol.“Like, everyone’s inside. There’s a high level of stress, anxiety and fearfulness because they’re being kept in their houses.“Some of the people, you can tell by their voice that they’re almost at the point of breaking down crying. You could say it’s traumatic.”The manhunt saga began on 12 July when Mr McLeod and Mr Schmegelsky, childhood friends, left their home in Port Alberni on Vancouver Island and travelled 1,500 miles north to Whitehorse, in the Yukon, to look for work.But on 15 July police discovered the bodies of a young couple near Liard Hot Springs, back in British Columbia and the RCMP has said the teenagers are suspects in the case and wanted for questioning.A few days later a burnt-out truck driven by the pair was discovered, along with the body of Leonard Dyck. Mr McLeod and Mr Schmegelsky have been charged with his murder and chased across Canada by the RCMP ever since.The duo are believed to be armed and the public has been warned not to approach them.The father of Mr Schmegelsky has told reporters he believes his son is on a “suicide mission” and expects him to eventually die in a confrontation with the police. “A normal child doesn’t travel across the country killing people,” he said. “A child in some very serious pain does.”




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Report: Florida surfer attacked by shark opts for bar instead of hospital

Report: Florida surfer attacked by shark opts for bar instead of hospitalA professional surfer goes to a bar instead of a hospital after getting bitten by a shark.




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House Republicans plan to hold one of their biggest annual meetings in Baltimore, a city which Trump says is 'dangerous' and 'filthy'

House Republicans plan to hold one of their biggest annual meetings in Baltimore, a city which Trump says is 'dangerous' and 'filthy'Trump described Baltimore as a "very dangerous & filthy place." His party will hold a major yearly meeting in the city in September.




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Two-year-old boy missing after both parents found dead in apparent 'murder-suicide'

Two-year-old boy missing after both parents found dead in apparent 'murder-suicide'Authorities are looking for an Oregon toddler who remains missing after his parents died in what is believed to be a murder suicide. The Medford Police Department and the FBI are searching for Aiden Salcido, aged two, whose parents Daniel Salcido and Hannah Janiak died after fleeing from police. The couple, who had felony burglary warrants for their arrest, were found dead on Wednesday in Kalispell, Montana. Shortly before, officers had stopped a car and identified Salcido and Janiak inside. However, the couple fled the scene. The police officers gave chase and spiked the car’s tyres, forcing it to come to a stop. When officers approached the vehicle they found the couple dead inside. In a statement, the FBI said Janiak was found with a gunshot wound to her head and Salcido appeared to have a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Their son, Aiden, was not in the vehicle, which officers described as a 1996 GMC Jimmy with Oregon license plates.Earlier in the month, warrants had been issued for the couple after Janiak failed to show up at court. The Jackson County, Oregon, Sheriff's Office had investigated the couple for a burglary in 2018, the FBI said. Both were convicted of the charges, and Janiak was to begin serving her sentence at the Jackson County Jail on 11 June. She did not show up for her sentencing. Felony warrants were subsequently issued for the couple's arrest. The FBI said relatives were concerned for the couple and their son because they had not made contact with any friends or family.Investigators searched Janiak's financial records and found that the last activity was on 3 June and 4 June, when two purchases were made at a Walmart in Medford, the FBI said. The purchases were caught on surveillance video, which showed the parents and Aiden together. The couple purchased camping equipment, the FBI said. Along with camping gear and clothing, detectives found a receipt in the car from the Kalispell Walmart dated 25 July, the same day they died. Salcido and Janiak appeared in the surveillance video, but Aiden did not, Flathead County Sheriff Brian Heino told the Flathead Beacon. The relatives described Janiak to law enforcement as a good mother who had mental health issues. Relatives also said the family was homeless and would camp along the greenway in Medford.In a statement the Kalispell Police Department said: "Investigators are greatly concerned for Aiden's welfare and are asking for the public's help in locating him safely and expeditiously."Anyone with information on his whereabouts or information on where the family had been staying during the time they were reported missing is asked to contact Medford police at (541) 774-2258.Additional reporting by AP




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