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Conspiracy

QAnon thinks Donald Trump will become president again on March 4

Donald Trump will be sworn in as the 19th president of the United States on March 4, 2021. This is the latest conspiracy that QAnon followers have embraced in the wake of President Joe Biden’s inauguration last week, and extremist experts are worried that it highlights the way QAnon adherents are beginning to merge their beliefs — about the world being run by an elite cabal of cannibalistic satanist pedophiles — with even more extreme ideologies.

after his presidency

Is Donald Trump's brand 'radioactive' or will he reinvent himself once again

Now that he's out of office, former President Donald Trump faces a daunting challenge: rehabilitating his brand after it's been tarnished by a tumultuous presidency that ended with riots at the U.S. Capitol and a second impeachment. The good news for Trump: More than 74 million Americans voted for him and might be willing to stay at his hotels, golf at his resorts and buy his products, such as shirts, golf accessories and jewelry. The bad news: Business experts say many companies are expected to keep him at a distance, treating him as bad for business.

The new President

Joe Biden sworn in as 46th president on family Bible his son Beau used

Joseph Robinette Biden Jr has been sworn in as the 46th president of the United States, promising to marshal a spirit of national unity to guide the country through one of the most perilous chapters in American history. Millions of Americans watched from home as Chief Justice John Roberts administered the oath of office to Biden on the steps outside the West Front of the US Capitol, just two weeks after they watched in horror as a mob of supporters loyal to his predecessor stormed the building in a violent last stand to overturn the results of the presidential election.

Rudy Giuliani

Dominion Voting Systems sues for $1.3bn over baseless election claims

Dominion Voting Systems, the voting equipment manufacturer at the centre of baseless election fraud conspiracy theories pushed by Donald Trump and his allies, has sued the former president’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani in a $1.3bn defamation lawsuit. The 107-page complaint, filed in federal court on Monday, accuses the former New York City mayor of having “manufactured and disseminated” a conspiracy theory related to the company’s voting machines.

“The Hill We Climb”

Amanda Gorman’s inaugural poem is a stunning vision of democracy

Among the firsts in Amanda Gorman’s inaugural poem, “The Hill We Climb,” is the concept of democracy that it assumed. Democracy, according to the twenty-two-year-old poet, is an aspiration—a thing of the future. The word “democracy” first appears in the same verse in which Gorman refers to “a force that would shatter our nation rather than share it.” The insurrection at the Capitol on January 6th took place while Gorman was working on the poem, although the “force,” one may assume, is bigger than the insurrection—it is the Trump Presidency that made the insurrection possible, and the forces of white supremacy and inequality that enabled that Presidency itself.”

He is gone

Trump tells Americans 'have a good life' as he leaves White House

Donald Trump left Washington DC and the White House for the last time on Wednesday morning, giving a typically pugnacious and misleading speech as he departed and offering his parting words to America: “Have a good life, we will see you soon.” The outgoing president, who has broken with tradition by refusing to attend his successor’s inauguration, took a government helicopter from the White House at 8.18am, leaving what has been his home for four tumultuous years, and headed for Joint Base Andrews, a military facility in Maryland.

End of summer: 85% of the people vaccinated

Fauci says it's 'liberating' working under Biden

Anthony Fauci on Thursday said it has been “liberating” to work as the nation's top infectious diseases doctor under President Biden after his experience working for former President Trump. Speaking at the White House press briefing, Fauci was asked if he feels "less constrained" in the new administration after clashing with Trump and eventually being sidelined last year.

Inauguration

Joe Biden urges Americans to join together in appeal for unity

Joe Biden on Wednesday made an appeal for unity to Americans across the political spectrum in his inaugural address as the 46th president of the United States, seeking to turn the page on the divisions of the Trump era. Biden described unity as the path forward in order to contain the coronavirus, restore the U.S. economy, address the effects of climate change, deliver racial justice and mend deep divisions that were laid bare over the last four years.

Pardons

Donald Trump pardons Steve Bannon amid last acts of presidency

Donald Trump has pardoned former senior adviser Steve Bannon, among scores of others including rappers, financiers and former members of Congress in the final hours of his presidency.

Sean Spicer

Trump's ex-media chief, applies to join White House press corps

Four years after he kicked off the Trump presidency by lying angrily about the size of the inauguration crowd, the former press secretary Sean Spicer has applied to join the White House press corps.

Riley June Williams

Woman offered Pelosi's laptop to the Russians

Federal prosecutors are preparing to charge a 22-year-old woman with felony theft for allegedly taking a laptop from Speaker Nancy Pelosi's office, and they're urging a Harrisburg-area judge to deny her bail. Riley June Williams — who was already facing misdemeanor charges for her presence in the Capitol during the Jan. 6 attacks, while insurrectionists and rioters swarmed the building — was arrested Monday after first fleeing police.

Alejandro Mayorkas

Josh Hawley delays quick confirmation

Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) announced on Tuesday he would place a hold on Alejandro Mayorkas, President-elect Joe Biden’s choice to lead the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Hawley, who has come under fire recently amid allegations that he played a role in the Capitol riot early this month, made the announcement just hours after the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs wrapped its hearing with Mayorkas. The move delays the nomination of a post Democrats have argued is critical to fill immediately to protect national security.

Poll

66 percent approve of Biden’s handling of transition

As President-elect Joe Biden prepares to take office on Wednesday, new surveys report that a majority of Americans approve of the way he has handled the tumultuous transition period — which has been marred by baseless voter fraud claims, a still-raging pandemic and mob violence inside the Capitol.

News

End of summer: 85% of the people vaccinated

Fauci says it's 'liberating' working under Biden

Anthony Fauci on Thursday said it has been “liberating” to work as the nation's top infectious diseases doctor under President Biden after his experience working for former President Trump. Speaking at the White House press briefing, Fauci was asked if he feels "less constrained" in the new administration after clashing with Trump and eventually being sidelined last year.


He is gone

Trump tells Americans 'have a good life' as he leaves White House

Donald Trump left Washington DC and the White House for the last time on Wednesday morning, giving a typically pugnacious and misleading speech as he departed and offering his parting words to America: “Have a good life, we will see you soon.” The outgoing president, who has broken with tradition by refusing to attend his successor’s inauguration, took a government helicopter from the White House at 8.18am, leaving what has been his home for four tumultuous years, and headed for Joint Base Andrews, a military facility in Maryland.

COVID-19: USA

U.S. coronavirus death toll passes 400,000 as Biden prepares to take office

The U.S. has hit a grim milestone on the eve of President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration: 400,000 deaths from Covid-19, according to a tracker maintained by Johns Hopkins University. The staggering toll comes amid a struggling national vaccination effort that has resulted in just 12.3 million shots administered — well below the Trump administration’s goal of vaccinating 20 million people by the end of 2020. Biden, meanwhile, has set an ambitious target of 100 million shots by the end of his first 100 days in office.


Vladimir Putin

Alexei Navalny detained at airport on return to Russia

The Russian opposition politician Alexei Navalny has been detained at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport shortly after returning from treatment abroad for a suspected poisoning attempt on his life by Russia’s FSB spy agency.

‘He has an obligation to them’

Attorney for ‘QAnon shaman’ asks Trump to pardon rioters

The lawyer for the “QAnon shaman” who was part of the deadly siege of the Capitol last week publicly petitioned President Donald Trump on Thursday to pardon his client.

$20,000 a day

Donald Trump 'refusing to pay' Rudy Giuliani's legal fees

Donald Trump has fallen out with his personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, and is refusing to pay the former New York mayor’s legal bills, it was reported, with the president feeling abandoned and frustrated during his last days in office. Giuliani played a key role in Trump’s failed attempts to overturn the results of November’s presidential election through the courts. The lawyer mounted numerous spurious legal challenges, traveling to swing states won by Joe Biden, and spread false claims the vote was rigged.

Inauguration

National Guard presence in D.C. swells to 20,000 ahead of inauguration

More than 20,000 members of the National Guard could be stationed throughout Washington D.C. after federal officials authorized a 5,000 member increase, the city’s police chief said Wednesday. "I think you can expect to see somewhere upwards beyond 20,000 members of the National Guard that will be here in the footprint of the District of Columbia,” acting Metropolitan Police Chief Robert Contee said at a news conference. Contee cautioned that the final headcount is still under deliberation and will be determined in conjunction with the Secret Service.

Capitol attack

The five people who died

Shortnews

Poll

66 percent approve of Biden’s handling of transition

As President-elect Joe Biden prepares to take office on Wednesday, new surveys report that a majority of Americans approve of the way he has handled the tumultuous transition period — which has been marred by baseless voter fraud claims, a still-raging pandemic and mob violence inside the Capitol.

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Poll

66 percent approve of Biden’s handling of transition

As President-elect Joe Biden prepares to take office on Wednesday, new surveys report that a majority of Americans approve of the way he has handled the tumultuous transition period — which has been marred by baseless voter fraud claims, a still-raging pandemic and mob violence inside the Capitol. Roughly two-thirds of respondents in a CNN poll conducted this month said they approve of Biden’s performance during the presidential transition. The vast majority of those surveyed, 70 percent, disapprove of President Donald Trump’s handling of the post-election period.

An NBC News poll released on Tuesday also showed that most registered voters, 60 percent, approve of Biden’s handling of the transition, while a PBS NewsHour/NPR/Marist poll showed a narrower margin of approval among Americans, 51 percent.

Additionally, Biden’s personal favorability rating in CNN polling has improved by 7 percentage points since October, now resting at 59 percent. Vice President-elect Kamala Harris’ favorability is 51 percent, its highest ever in CNN polling.

By contrast, Trump’s latest favorability rating is 33 percent, and his job approval rating is 34 percent — both lower than at any other point in his presidency, according to CNN polling.

Respondents appeared mostly optimistic about Biden accomplishing his key policy goals as president, the CNN poll showed, although more than half of those surveyed (53 percent) said it is unlikely the incoming president will be able to cool down the country’s political divisions.

Majorities of respondents said it is at least somewhat likely Biden will sign new coronavirus relief legislation (83 percent), restore relationships with U.S. allies (74 percent), administer 100 million coronavirus vaccines in 100 days (70 percent) and create a public health care option (64 percent).

Most of those polled (61 percent) said Biden will do a good job as president — compared to the 48 percent who said the same about Trump in 2017 and the 79 percent who had high expectations for Barack Obama in 2008. That same percentage of Americans, 61 percent, think the country will be better off after four years of Biden’s presidency.

The CNN poll was conducted by SSRS from Jan. 9-14, surveying 1,003 adults with a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3.7 percentage points. Among the respondents, 33 percent identified as Democrats, 26 percent identified as Republicans and 41 percent identified as independents or members of another party.

The NBC News poll was conducted Jan. 10-13, surveying 1,000 registered voters with a margin of sampling error of 3.1 percentage points. The PBS NewsHour/NPR/Marist poll was conducted Jan. 11-13, surveying 1,173 adults with a margin of sampling error of 3.5 percentage points.

Ali Alexander

Facebook bans 'Stop the Steal' organizer

Facebook and Instagram have permanently banned one of the top organizers of the “Stop the Steal” protest that devolved into deadly riots on Capitol Hill last week. Within the last day, the company removed the Facebook and Instagram accounts of Ali Alexander, a far-right Republican operative who helped organize the event.

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Ali Alexander

Facebook bans 'Stop the Steal' organizer

Facebook and Instagram have permanently banned one of the top organizers of the “Stop the Steal” protest that devolved into deadly riots on Capitol Hill last week. Within the last day, the company removed the Facebook and Instagram accounts of Ali Alexander, a far-right Republican operative who helped organize the event.

“We removed this account on both Facebook and Instagram for violating our Coordinating Harm policy,” Facebook spokesman Andy Stone said in a statement. He said the removal is part of Facebook’s decision to remove any content referring to “stop the steal” ahead of the inauguration.

Last Friday, according to the Daily Beast, Alexander posted a video on Twitter saying: “I didn’t incite anything. I didn’t do anything.” But in the lead up to the rally, Alexander had not only called for a march on the Capitol but hinted that it could get violent.

At one rally in mid-December in Arizona, he told the crowd, “One of our organizers in one state said, ‘We’re nice patriots, we don’t throw bricks.’ I leaned over and I said, ‘Not yet. Not yet!’ Haven’t you read about a little tar-and-feathering? Those were second-degree burns!”

Alexander also said: “We’re going to convince them to not certify the vote on January 6 by marching hundreds of thousands, if not millions of patriots, to sit their butts in D.C. and close that city down, right? And if we have to explore options after that … ‘yet.’ Yet!”

And in an online video before the rally, he said, “I was the person who came up with the Jan. 6 idea” along with three other members of Congress. He also promised to help find hotel rooms for anyone attending the protest if the hotel they had reserved temporarily closed down.

Asked for comment about being banned by Facebook and Instagram, Alexander said he has “tens of thousands of threats against my life and safety by Democrat activists and Antifa.” He insisted that the violent demonstrations at the Capitol were entirely separate from the event he had organized, warned tech companies that his movement could be hijacked by “bad actors and dark elements” with him off their platforms, and said he’d testify before lawmakers.

“I eagerly look forward to speaking to Congress and testifying about the events that led to and happened on January 6th,” Alexander said.

“I fight for civil rights. I believe this election was stolen. I petitioned my government. I’m being punished for organizing millions of people,” he added in a text message.

In addition to Facebook and Instagram, Alexander has also been banned from Twitter, PayPal, and Venmo since the Jan. 6 events.

In 2007, Alexander pleaded guilty to a felony of property theft in Texas and the next year to a credit card abuse felony, also in Texas.

Alexander, also known as Ali Akbar, worked for the John McCain 2008 presidential campaign and has also worked on various political action committees, including one called Black Conservatives Fund to which Republican mega-donor Robert Mercer gave $60,000 in 2016.

In 2019, he got attention for accusing Vice President-elect Kamala Harris of not being “an American Black” since her dad is from Jamaica, a tweet that got him a retweet by Donald Trump Jr., although he later deleted it. That July, Alexander was invited to a social media summit hosted by the White House.

Capitol attack

Security concerns: Theft of two computers

At least two computers were stolen from the Capitol when a violent mob of Donald Trump supporters stormed the building on Wednesday – including one from the office of the House speaker, Nancy Pelosi – raising grave information security concerns. An aide to Pelosi confirmed Friday that a laptop was stolen from the speaker’s office, saying it belonged “to a conference room and was used for presentations”, but did not elaborate further on what information it may contain.

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Capitol attack

Security concerns: Theft of two computers

At least two computers were stolen from the Capitol when a violent mob of Donald Trump supporters stormed the building on Wednesday – including one from the office of the House speaker, Nancy Pelosi – raising grave information security concerns. An aide to Pelosi confirmed Friday that a laptop was stolen from the speaker’s office, saying it belonged “to a conference room and was used for presentations”, but did not elaborate further on what information it may contain.

At least one other computer was stolen, a laptop belonging to the office of the Democratic senator Jeff Merkley, of Oregon. The acting US attorney, Michael Sherwin, said that some of the thefts might have potentially jeopardized what he described as “national security equities”.

The theft of electronic devices from congressional offices has been a persistent worry following the invasion by Trump supporters, who, incited by the president, entered the capitol in an effort to subvert the certification of Joe Biden’s election win.

Staffers were quickly forced to shelter in place, leaving many devices vulnerable to the attackers. Photos posted by rioters from inside the Capitol showed exposed computers, including one in Pelosi’s office with an email inbox in full view. The impact of such a device being taken could be grave, said Brandon Hoffman, the chief information security officer at IT security provider Netenrich.

“Regardless of how much they want to downplay this, the laptop has to have at least access that could be leveraged,” he said. “It’s highly unlikely that this laptop was sitting there with no files, or file access, or any other useful information to somebody looking for leverage or retribution.”

What else might have been taken during the chaos is not yet known. Some information technology experts worry that intruders may have planted malicious software on computers, although it’s not clear that devices were a particular focus of the attack.

The concerns come as the US grapples with the aftermath of the biggest state-sanctioned hack of the government in history, after SolarWinds was breached and government email was accessed. Officials are still working to determine the extent to which government devices were violated in that breach, which is now being attributed to Russia. Nearly 10 agencies were impacted, including the US Treasury and Department of Commerce.

Bill Barr

Trump's behavior 'betrayal of his office'

William Barr, the former attorney general, released a scathing statement about Donald Trump’s behavior yesterday, as a mob stormed the US Capitol. Barr, who left office late last month, described the president’s conduct as a “betrayal of his office and supporters.” In a statement to the AP, Barr said that “orchestrating a mob to pressure Congress is inexcusable.”

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Bill Barr

Trump's behavior 'betrayal of his office'

William Barr, the former attorney general, released a scathing statement about Donald Trump’s behavior yesterday, as a mob stormed the US Capitol. Barr, who left office late last month, described the president’s conduct as a “betrayal of his office and supporters.” In a statement to the AP, Barr said that “orchestrating a mob to pressure Congress is inexcusable.”

After a pro-Trump stormed the Capitol, forcing lawmakers to evacuate, the president praised his supporters as “very special” and told them, “We love you!”

Trump also justified the mob’s actions yesterday by citing his baseless claims of widespread fraud in the presidential election, essentially blaming his opponents for the violence that left four dead.

Twitter removed three of Trump’s tweets about the storming of the Capitol due to a “risk of violence.”

Civil War

Trump adviser resigns

Donald Trump’s deputy national security adviser, Matt Pottinger, and former chief of staff and current special envoy to Northern Ireland, Mick Mulvaney, have resigned. Two other senior White House officials – the national security adviser, Robert O’Brien, and the deputy chief of staff, Chris Liddell – are reportedly considering stepping down after a mob of Donald Trump supporters stormed the US Capitol building.

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Civil War

Trump adviser resigns

Donald Trump’s deputy national security adviser, Matt Pottinger, and former chief of staff and current special envoy to Northern Ireland, Mick Mulvaney, have resigned. Two other senior White House officials – the national security adviser, Robert O’Brien, and the deputy chief of staff, Chris Liddell – are reportedly considering stepping down after a mob of Donald Trump supporters stormed the US Capitol building.

Pottinger and Mulvaney’s departures comes amid speculation that others will also quit after the US president incited and praised rioters while continuing to air baseless grievances over his loss of the presidency.

“I called [Secretary of State] Mike Pompeo last night to let him know I was resigning from that. I can’t do it. I can’t stay,” Mick Mulvaney told CNBC on Thursday morning.

“Those who choose to stay, and I have talked with some of them, are choosing to stay because they’re worried the president might put someone worse in,” Mulvaney added.

So far seven officials associated with Trump and his inner circle have said they are quitting, including members of Melania Trump’s team, after the deadly violence that surrounded the Congressional vote to certify Joe Biden’s presidential election victory in November.

Senior Republican figures have also indicated splits from the president.

Tweeting from his personal account, O’Brien – a staunch Trump loyalist – praised the behaviour of the vice-president, Mike Pence, who resisted Trump’s pressure to overturn the election certification, while making no mention of Trump.

“I just spoke with Vice President Pence. He is a genuinely fine and decent man,” he tweeted. “He exhibited courage today as he did at the Capitol on 9/11 as a Congressman. I am proud to serve with him.”

In further fallout that underlined the fracturing of the Trump administration’s inner circles, Marc Short, Pence’s chief of staff, indicated to journalists he had been banned from the White House by Trump after the president “blamed” him for advice he gave to Pence on Trump’s demands he overturn the election result.

According to reports in the US media, some senior administration officials have also begun talking informally about invoking the 25th amendment to remove the president before his term expires on 20 January, while calls are also growing for a second impeachment to ensure Trump cannot run for public office again.

Election 2020

Conspiracy

QAnon thinks Donald Trump will become president again on March 4

Donald Trump will be sworn in as the 19th president of the United States on March 4, 2021. This is the latest conspiracy that QAnon followers have embraced in the wake of President Joe Biden’s inauguration last week, and extremist experts are worried that it highlights the way QAnon adherents are beginning to merge their beliefs — about the world being run by an elite cabal of cannibalistic satanist pedophiles — with even more extreme ideologies.


“The Hill We Climb”

Amanda Gorman’s inaugural poem is a stunning vision of democracy

Among the firsts in Amanda Gorman’s inaugural poem, “The Hill We Climb,” is the concept of democracy that it assumed. Democracy, according to the twenty-two-year-old poet, is an aspiration—a thing of the future. The word “democracy” first appears in the same verse in which Gorman refers to “a force that would shatter our nation rather than share it.” The insurrection at the Capitol on January 6th took place while Gorman was working on the poem, although the “force,” one may assume, is bigger than the insurrection—it is the Trump Presidency that made the insurrection possible, and the forces of white supremacy and inequality that enabled that Presidency itself.”

The new President

Joe Biden sworn in as 46th president on family Bible his son Beau used

Joseph Robinette Biden Jr has been sworn in as the 46th president of the United States, promising to marshal a spirit of national unity to guide the country through one of the most perilous chapters in American history. Millions of Americans watched from home as Chief Justice John Roberts administered the oath of office to Biden on the steps outside the West Front of the US Capitol, just two weeks after they watched in horror as a mob of supporters loyal to his predecessor stormed the building in a violent last stand to overturn the results of the presidential election.


'We did what we came here to do'

The final lie: Donald Trump tries to recast legacy in farewell address

President Donald Trump tried to recast his legacy away from the violence of the past few weeks in his farewell address on Tuesday afternoon. As he leaves office as the only twice-impeached U.S. president, Trump portrayed his political phenomenon as a unifying one, as opposed to the vitriolic, partisan warfare he engaged in throughout his presidency and campaign. And with the memory of his supporters swarming the Capitol in a deadly attack fresh in the nation’s conscience, the president used the address to try to reframe his legacy as a rosier picture of his time in office.

The Guardian

Billionaires backed Republicans who sought to reverse US election results

An anti-tax group funded primarily by billionaires has emerged as one of the biggest backers of the Republican lawmakers who sought to overturn the US election results, according to an analysis by the Guardian. The Club for Growth has supported the campaigns of 42 of the rightwing Republicans senators and members of Congress who voted last week to challenge US election results, doling out an estimated $20m to directly and indirectly support their campaigns in 2018 and 2020, according to data compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics.

Impeachment

After the 'witch-hunt': Walls close in on Trump in final days

President Trump is growing increasingly isolated after the House on Wednesday made him the only president in U.S. history to be impeached twice, putting a final, lasting stain on his legacy just a week before he leaves office. Cabinet members and White House officials have rushed for the exits following Trump’s remarks to a violent mob of supporters that ultimately stormed the U.S. Capitol last week in a bloody and dark episode of American history. Even Trump’s most loyal allies have been put off by the developments, and aides are absent from the airwaves and the public.

The Legacy

House impeaches President Donald Trump for ‘incitement of insurrection’

The House impeached President Donald Trump for the second time in a historic, bipartisan condemnation of an outgoing president whose words fueled a deadly insurrection at the Capitol. Ten Republicans joined all Democrats in a 232-197 vote supporting a single impeachment count: "incitement of insurrection." The process now moves to the Senate, where Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has indicated that a trial won’t begin until Trump is out of office.

Liz Cheney

Republicans begin turning on Trump over impeachment

Rep. Liz Cheney, the No. 3 House Republican, said Tuesday she would vote to impeach President Donald Trump for his role inciting deadly violence at the Capitol last week, fueling new urgency behind the Democrats’ push to remove the president from office.

‘Stop the Steal’

Facebook is removing all related content

Facebook Inc. said it is removing all content mentioning “stop the steal,” a phrase popular among supporters of President Trump’s unproven claims of election fraud, as part of a raft of measures to stem misinformation and incitements to violence on its platform ahead of President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration.

ABC-Ipsos Poll

Majority of Americans want Trump out before Biden takes over

A majority of Americans believes Donald Trump should be removed from power before Joe Biden is sworn in to replace him, according to a poll released on Sunday. In the survey by ABC News and Ipsos, 56% of respondents said Trump should be removed before inauguration day, 20 January. A higher number, 67%, held Trump responsible for the violence at the US Capitol this week which left five people dead.

White House

Donald Trump went 'ballistic' after being tossed off Twitter

President Donald Trump has many prized possessions. But few seemed to inspire as much personal joy as his Twitter feed. Trump routinely boasted of the social media bullhorn he possessed. He credited it with launching his political trajectory. And he used it as a tool to lacerate his foes. On Friday night, he lost it. And, then, he lost his mind. The president is “ballistic,” a senior administration official said after Twitter permanently took down his account, citing the possibility that it would be used in the final 12 days of Trump’s presidency to incite violence.

Civil War

Republican Senator Lisa Murkowski calls on Trump to resign

U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski said Friday that Donald Trump should resign the presidency immediately and that if the Republican Party cannot separate itself from Trump, she isn’t certain she has a future with the party. “I want him to resign. I want him out. He has caused enough damage,” Murkowski, R-Alaska, said during an interview from her small Capitol office, steps away from the Senate chambers that were invaded by pro-Trump rioters on Wednesday.

25th Amendment

25th amendment: can Trump be removed from office before his term ends?

After a pro-Trump mob stormed the Capitol, there are calls for the president to be relieved of office by impeachment or using the 25th amendment. But how would it work?

Shortnews

Riley June Williams

Woman offered Pelosi's laptop to the Russians

Federal prosecutors are preparing to charge a 22-year-old woman with felony theft for allegedly taking a laptop from Speaker Nancy Pelosi's office, and they're urging a Harrisburg-area judge to deny her bail. Riley June Williams — who was already facing misdemeanor charges for her presence in the Capitol during the Jan. 6 attacks, while insurrectionists and rioters swarmed the building — was arrested Monday after first fleeing police.

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Riley June Williams

Woman offered Pelosi's laptop to the Russians

Federal prosecutors are preparing to charge a 22-year-old woman with felony theft for allegedly taking a laptop from Speaker Nancy Pelosi's office, and they're urging a Harrisburg-area judge to deny her bail. Riley June Williams — who was already facing misdemeanor charges for her presence in the Capitol during the Jan. 6 attacks, while insurrectionists and rioters swarmed the building — was arrested Monday after first fleeing police.

The initial evidence against her included witness testimony suggesting Riley had told friends she planned to sell Pelosi's laptop to Russian intelligence.

But the first batch of charges did not include the theft, which the FBI indicated remains under investigation.
By elevating the case against Williams, prosecutors are indicating they believe she is the culprit behind the theft of a laptop from Pelosi's office, despite conflicting indications from other rioters and social media posts. Aides to Pelosi say the laptop was only used for presentations.

The impending new charges are an indication of the fast-moving efforts by prosecutors to build on some of the quick initial charges they lodged against Capitol rioters. FBI and Justice Department officials indicated they mounted quick cases to round up some of the insurrectionists and participants in the riots and intended to add more serious charges over time.

A hearing on whether Williams should be detained while awaiting trial is scheduled for Thursday. Williams' attorney Lori Ulrich protested the delay, noting that her client has remained in jail since Monday.

According to the initial case against Williams, a former romantic partner who spoke to authorities claimed to have seen a video of Williams "taking a laptop computer or hard drive from Speaker Pelosi’s office."

"[Witness 1] stated that WILLIAMS intended to send the computer device to a friend in Russia, who then planned to sell the device to SVR, Russia’s foreign intelligence service," the agent noted. "According to [Witness 1], the transfer of the computer device to Russia fell through for unknown reasons and WILLIAMS still has the computer device or destroyed it."

"This matter remains under investigation," the agent concluded.

For now, Williams is facing charges of entering a restricted building and disorderly conduct for her actions inside the Capitol.

The agent handling Williams' case also spoke to law enforcement officials in Harrisburg who had recently interacted with Williams' parents. Williams' mother on Jan. 11 filed a suspicious persons report against the person the FBI has identified as "Witness 1." That witness is described as a former romantic partner of the suspect.

While local officers were present, Williams' mother called her via video, and officers saw her wearing a brown jacket that matched the one she was seen wearing in images from the Jan. 6 riots. Harrisburg officers also spoke with Williams' father, who said he drove with her to Washington for the protests but that they split up for the day while she joined other friends.

The pair drove home from Washington after meeting outside the Capitol.

Chad Wolf

Acting homeland security secretary to step down

Acting homeland security secretary Chad Wolf is stepping down, nine days ahead of President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration and amid widespread fears about security in the aftermath of the mob attack on the Capitol last week.

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Chad Wolf

Acting homeland security secretary to step down

Acting homeland security secretary Chad Wolf is stepping down, nine days ahead of President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration and amid widespread fears about security in the aftermath of the mob attack on the Capitol last week.

In Congress, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said Monday that the House will move forward with impeaching President Trump for a second time if Vice President Pence does not seek to remove him under the 25th Amendment by Wednesday.

Her threat came shortly after House Democrats formally introduced an article of impeachment against Trump, charging him with “incitement of insurrection” for his role in the takeover of the U.S. Capitol by a violent pro-Trump mob on Wednesday.

Democrats say that measure already has 218 co-sponsors, enough to guarantee passage.

Impeachment

Dershowitz says he'd defend Trump again

Alan Dershowitz, the controversial celebrity attorney who defended President Trump during his impeachment trial, said Friday that he would be willing to defend the president again should the House impeach him a second time. Dershowitz said he did not believe Trump committed an impeachable offense in urging supporters to go to the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday. The rioters eventually stormed the Capitol in what was became one of the darkest and most embarrassing episodes for the country in recent memory.

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Impeachment

Dershowitz says he'd defend Trump again

Alan Dershowitz, the controversial celebrity attorney who defended President Trump during his impeachment trial, said Friday that he would be willing to defend the president again should the House impeach him a second time. Dershowitz said he did not believe Trump committed an impeachable offense in urging supporters to go to the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday. The rioters eventually stormed the Capitol in what was became one of the darkest and most embarrassing episodes for the country in recent memory.

Many observers believe Trump played a direct role in inciting the mob to attack the Capitol, and event that led to the death of a Capitol Police officer and several others, many injuries, and the evacuation of lawmakers.

House Democrats are preparing to impeach Trump and Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.) said he was willing to consider it on Friday morning.

But Dershowitz said it was not impeachable.

"He has not committed a constitutionally impeachable offense and I would be honored to once again defend the Constitution against partisan efforts to weaponize it for political purposes,” Dershowitz told The Hill.

Trump egged on supporters at a rally just before the Capitol was hit, urging them to “fight” while repeating his claims that a fair election he lost had been rigged.

Trump was impeached in a largely party-line vote in December 2019 for abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. He was acquitted by the Senate last February, with only one GOP senator – Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) – voting to convict and remove Trump on the count of abuse of power.

It’s unclear whether a second impeachment would be successful. Sixty-six senators would need to vote in favor of removing Trump. The effort would also likely need to move quickly, given that Trump only has 12 days remaining in office.

While Dershowitz is willing to defend Trump in another impeachment trial, it’s unclear whether the other attorneys who represented him the first time would do so also.

Trump’s legal team consisted of nine lawyers, including Jay Sekulow, Trump’s personal attorney, and White House counsel Pat Cipollone and other attorneys in the White House counsel’s office.

Michigan voter fraud hearing

Flatulence, unruly drunken witness

A hearing in Michigan on Wednesday regarding voter fraud in the presidential election went viral over alleged flatulence and testimony from an unruly witness. During the nearly five-hour hearing before the Michigan state legislature, President Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani and other witnesses repeated debunked claims of voter fraud and election misconduct.

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Michigan voter fraud hearing

Flatulence, unruly drunken witness

A hearing in Michigan on Wednesday regarding voter fraud in the presidential election went viral over alleged flatulence and testimony from an unruly witness. During the nearly five-hour hearing before the Michigan state legislature, President Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani and other witnesses repeated debunked claims of voter fraud and election misconduct, according to MLive.com.

HuffPost reporter Ryan J. Reilly shared a video on Twitter of Giuliani passionately answering a question about Attorney General William Barr’s statement that federal prosecutors had not found evidence of election fraud that would influence the outcome.

During the clip, what sounds like flatulence can be heard as he’s speaking.

A second clip by Reilly was shared 2.3 million times.

Another clip from the hearing went viral of a drunken witness telling the panel baseless accusations of widespread voter fraud.

Roughly 30 seconds into the clip, she interrupts a Michigan representatives trying to ask a follow-up question to a statement she made.

Giuliani can be seen reaching over to her, tapping her arm, and then tapping the table. He appeared to be trying to get the witness' attention.

The clip has been viewed more than 17.7 million times, and the phrase “When Rudy” was trending in response.

The hearing did not show any evidence of widespread voter fraud by the time it was over, according to the Detroit Free Press.

Michigan certified President-elect Joe Biden’s victory in the state last Monday, a state he won by roughly 150,000 votes.

Jen Psaki

Biden names White House press secretary

President-elect Joe Biden said Jen Psaki, a former White House communications director, will be his press secretary, one of seven women named to top communications roles Sunday.

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Jen Psaki

Biden names White House press secretary

President-elect announces seven-member all-female communications team. President-elect Joe Biden said Jen Psaki, a former White House communications director, will be his press secretary, one of seven women named to top communications roles Sunday. Ms. Psaki, who has been overseeing the confirmation process for the transition, served in several top roles in the Obama administration, including as State Department spokeswoman.

In addition to Ms. Psaki, Mr. Biden said that his White House communications director will be Kate Bedingfield, who served in the same role for his campaign. Pili Tobar will be deputy communications director, and Karine Jean-Pierre will serve as principal deputy press secretary. Ms. Tobar worked as the communications director for coalitions for Mr. Biden’s campaign, and Ms. Jean-Pierre served as chief of staff to Vice President-elect Kamala Harris during the campaign.

Symone Sanders will serve as senior adviser and chief spokesperson for Ms. Harris, and Ashley Etienne was named her communications director. Elizabeth Alexander will be communications director for first lady Jill Biden. All three served as senior advisers during the campaign.

“I am proud to announce today the first senior White House communications team comprised entirely of women,” Mr. Biden said. 

“These qualified, experienced communicators bring diverse perspectives to their work and a shared commitment to building this country back better.”

Politics

INSURRECTION FALLOUT

Senate Democrats file ethics complaint against Hawley, Cruz

Democrats are requesting an investigation into the pair of senators over their objections to the election results. A group of Senate Democrats filed an ethics complaint Thursday against GOP Sens. Josh Hawley and Ted Cruz, over their Jan. 6 efforts to object to the 2020 presidential election results.


Inauguration

Joe Biden urges Americans to join together in appeal for unity

Joe Biden on Wednesday made an appeal for unity to Americans across the political spectrum in his inaugural address as the 46th president of the United States, seeking to turn the page on the divisions of the Trump era. Biden described unity as the path forward in order to contain the coronavirus, restore the U.S. economy, address the effects of climate change, deliver racial justice and mend deep divisions that were laid bare over the last four years.


Marjorie Taylor Greene

Republican says she will introduce impeachment articles against Biden

Newly elected Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) on Wednesday said she plans on filing articles of impeachment against President-elect Joe Biden on his first full day in office next week.

Jamie Raskin

Grieving congressman leads push to impeach Trump

For Jamie Raskin, the Democratic congressman and constitutional law professor who is leading the push to impeach Donald Trump for a second time, the last fortnight has been tumultuous. He lost his son 25-year-old son, Tommy, who had struggled with depression, on New Year’s Eve.

Trump impeachment

Democrats formally charge president with inciting insurrection

Donald Trump is facing a historic second impeachment after Democrats in the House of Representatives formally charged him with one count of “incitement of insurrection” over the Capitol Hill riot. Five people died in the attack last week, including a police officer, which Trump prompted when he told supporters to “fight like hell” in his attempt to overturn election defeat by Joe Biden. Emerging video footage has revealed just how close the mob came to a potentially deadly confrontation with members of Congress.

Capitol breach

Republican senators Hawley and Cruz face calls to resign

Ted Cruz and Josh Hawley are “complicit in the big lie” and “have a lot of soul searching to do” over their attempts to overturn the presidential election in favour of Donald Trump, a Republican Senate colleague said on Sunday, amid growing calls for the two men to resign or be censured.

Help Biden ‘any way I can’

Andrew Cuomo brushes off AG speculation

Shortnews

Alejandro Mayorkas

Josh Hawley delays quick confirmation

Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) announced on Tuesday he would place a hold on Alejandro Mayorkas, President-elect Joe Biden’s choice to lead the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Hawley, who has come under fire recently amid allegations that he played a role in the Capitol riot early this month, made the announcement just hours after the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs wrapped its hearing with Mayorkas. The move delays the nomination of a post Democrats have argued is critical to fill immediately to protect national security.

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Alejandro Mayorkas

Josh Hawley delays quick confirmation

Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) announced on Tuesday he would place a hold on Alejandro Mayorkas, President-elect Joe Biden’s choice to lead the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Hawley, who has come under fire recently amid allegations that he played a role in the Capitol riot early this month, made the announcement just hours after the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs wrapped its hearing with Mayorkas. The move delays the nomination of a post Democrats have argued is critical to fill immediately to protect national security.

“Mr. Mayorkas has not adequately explained how he will enforce federal law and secure the southern border given President-elect Biden’s promise to roll back major enforcement and security measures,” Hawley said in a statement.

“Just today, he declined to say he would enforce the laws Congress has already passed to secure the border wall system. Given this, I cannot consent to skip the standard vetting process and fast-track this nomination when so many questions remain unanswered," he added.

Hawley’s opposition comes as Biden and Democrats argue the attacks on the Capitol make the post a top priority. Hawley was the first senator to announce he would vote against certification of the 2020 election results.

His hold could stall a nomination otherwise expected to advance once Democrats gain control of the Senate on Wednesday. Defeating the hold will require a 50 vote threshold cloture vote and eats up days of floor time, complicating the process.

Mayorkas, who previously served as the deputy secretary of DHS under the Obama administration, did not earn any Republican votes when he was confirmed in 2013.

"We are facing unprecedented challenges and threats to our national security, and our country urgently need a confirmed Secretary of Homeland Security in place on day one to protect the American people. Alejandro Mayorkas is one of the most knowledgeable homeland security experts in the country," Biden transition spokesman Sean Savett said in a statement to The Hill.

"The Senate held swift confirmation votes for the DHS Secretary nominee in 2009 and 2017 in order for them to start on day one for good reason. Senator Hawley's threat to disrupt historical practice and try to leave this vital position vacant is dangerous, especially in this time of overlapping crises when there is not a moment to waste."

Hawley’s opposition stems from an exchange where the lawmaker asked Mayorkas if he would obligate $1.4 billion in funds set aside for Trump’s border wall.

“If I may strike at the fundamental point that I believe you were inquiring of, which is will I follow the law and the execution of my responsibilities should I have the privilege of serving as the Secretary of Homeland Security. And the answer is yes I will follow the law. And what I would need to do is to understand what the law provides with respect to the obligation of funds to construct a border wall, and then see what the opportunities are to discontinue any such obligations,” Mayorkas said.

Hawley then thanked Mayorkas for getting “right to the nub” of his question.

He also asked Mayorkas about Biden’s plans to give legal status to 11 million people residing in the U.S., something Hawley said concerned him “especially in this time of severe economic distress that has fallen disproportionately on working class Americans.”

Mayorkas called the move a “path to citizenship for the individuals who have been in this country for many years, who have contributed to our communities, and to this nation's economic prosperity."

"I would be privileged to work with Congress to pass immigration reform legislation that provides that path, and provides a permanent solution to what is clearly a broken system,” he added.

Pompeo scraps trip

EU leader calls Trump 'political pyromaniac'

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has cancelled a trip to Europe at the last minute after European officials were publicly critical of Donald Trump’s role in last week’s storming of the Capitol. The official reason for the cancellation of the trip, originally to Brussels and Luxembourg, was the need to coordinate with a transition team from the incoming Biden administration, but it comes after the unprecedented attack on American democracy that stunned many world leaders and US allies.

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Pompeo scraps trip

EU leader calls Trump 'political pyromaniac'

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has cancelled a trip to Europe at the last minute after European officials were publicly critical of Donald Trump’s role in last week’s storming of the Capitol. The official reason for the cancellation of the trip, originally to Brussels and Luxembourg, was the need to coordinate with a transition team from the incoming Biden administration, but it comes after the unprecedented attack on American democracy that stunned many world leaders and US allies.

The Luxembourg leg of the trip was called off on Monday after its foreign minister Jean Asselborn called Trump “criminal” for inciting the attack.

Asselborn described the outgoing US president to RTL radio as a “political pyromaniac who must be brought before a court”.

Reuters and Fox News both quoted diplomatic sources as saying it was Luxembourg that had called off the meeting, a devastating snub from a tiny country for a secretary of state that continually claims to have restored “swagger” to the state department.

Pompeo was also due to meet the Belgian deputy prime minister and foreign minister, Sophie Wilmes, who tweeted while the assault in Washington was underway, “These images are shocking, also because they hurt our democratic ideals.”

“They show the extent of President-elect Biden’s task, which will be to unite American society around a common project. We trust him to do that.”

Jens Stoltenberg, the Nato secretary general, who was due to have a dinner with Pompeo had described the scenes in Washington as “shocking” and said: “The outcome of this democratic election must be respected.” A Nato spokesperson confirmed that Pompeo had cancelled on Tuesday, giving as a reason the need to focus on the transition.

Reuters reported that EU officials had declined to meet Pompeo on his last foreign trip, but a EU spokesperson denied there had been any plan or request for meetings with EU leaders.

The state department, in a statement, attributed the cancellation to transition work before President-elect Joe Biden takes office on 20 January, even if until recently Pompeo had been reluctant to unequivocally recognise Biden’s win. Also on Tuesday, the US Ambassador to the United Nations Kelly Craft cancelled a planned visit to Taiwan.

The state department declined further comment on European officials’ rejection of meetings with Pompeo.

The cold shoulder was a contrast with Pompeo’s previous visits to Brussels, which is home to Nato and EU headquarters, over the past three years, where he has given key-note speeches on US policy and met the EU’s chief executive, even as Europe balked at Trump’s foreign policy.

Nancy Pelosi

Trump should be removed immediately

Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said Thursday that Washington policymakers should act immediately to remove President Trump from office just two weeks before his term ends, citing "seditious" acts related to the president's role in encouraging the assault on the U.S. Capitol a day earlier. Pelosi said Vice President Mike Pence should invoke the 25th Amendment to remove Trump immediately. Short of that, she said, the House will impeach him for a second time.

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Nancy Pelosi

Trump should be removed immediately

Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said Thursday that Washington policymakers should act immediately to remove President Trump from office just two weeks before his term ends, citing "seditious" acts related to the president's role in encouraging the assault on the U.S. Capitol a day earlier.

Pelosi said Vice President Mike Pence should invoke the 25th Amendment to remove Trump immediately. Short of that, she said, the House will impeach him for a second time.

"Yesterday the president of the United States incited an armed insurrection against America," Pelosi told reporters in the Capitol.

"The gleeful desecration of the U.S. Capitol, which is the temple of our American democracy, and the violence targeting Congress are horrors that will forever stain our nation's history — instigated by the president."

Pelosi characterized Trump's role in his supporters' storming of the Capitol as "a seditious act" and called on Pence and other members of the president's cabinet to join forces to remove Trump from office, despite his short time left in office.

"This is an urgency of the highest magnitude," Pelosi said.

“While there are only 13 days left, any day can be a horror show for America,” she added.

In the wake of Wednesday's extraordinary events, Pelosi called on the resignation of the chief of the Capitol Police, Steven Sund. And she announced that the House Sergeant-at-Arms, Paul Irving, has already delivered his intention to resign.

CBS News poll

Biden leads Trump Arizona, Minnesota

Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden gained a small lead over President Trump in the battleground state of Arizona and holds a larger 9-point lead over the president in Minnesota, according to a new poll. Biden is backed by 47 percent of likely voters in Arizona, compared to Trump’s 44 percent, according to a CBS News poll released Sunday. Biden’s 3-point lead is within the poll’s margin error. Biden has gained on Trump in Arizona since a similar poll conducted in July found the race tied, with 46 percent of likely voters backing both candidates.

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CBS News poll

Biden leads Trump Arizona, Minnesota

Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden gained a small lead over President Trump in the battleground state of Arizona and holds a larger 9-point lead over the president in Minnesota, according to a new poll. Biden is backed by 47 percent of likely voters in Arizona, compared to Trump’s 44 percent, according to a CBS News poll released Sunday. Biden’s 3-point lead is within the poll’s margin error. Biden has gained on Trump in Arizona since a similar poll conducted in July found the race tied, with 46 percent of likely voters backing both candidates.

The survey also found half of Arizona voters said they think Biden would do a better job handling the coronavirus outbreak, with 50 percent saying Biden would handle the outbreak better compared to 37 percent who said the same about Trump.

Biden also leads when asked who would make voters feel more safe, with 46 percent saying Biden and 41 percent saying Trump. The candidates were about even when asked who would do a better job handling the economy, with 45 percent saying Trump and 44 percent saying Biden, based on the poll.

In Minnesota, a state Trump narrowly lost in 2016, Biden is backed by 50 percent of likely voters, based on the poll. The survey found 41 percent of likely voters said they would vote for Trump.

Biden again led Trump when asked about the coronavirus outbreak, with 50 percent saying Biden would do a better job handling the outbreak and 36 percent saying Trump would. Additionally, 47 percent of voters in Minnesota said Biden would make them feel more safe and 42 percent said the same about Trump.

Trump has a lead over Biden when asked about handling the economy. Forty-eight percent of likely voters in Minnesota said Trump would do a better job handling the economy and 44 percent said Biden, based on the poll.

The surveys were conducted on behalf of CBS News by YouGov between Sept. 9 to Sept. 11. The Arizona poll is based on 1,22 registered votes and the margin of error is 3.8 percentage points. The Minnesota poll is based on 1,100 registered voters and has a margin of error of 3.6 percentage points.

Peter Strzok

Donald Trump is compromised by the Russians

Former FBI agent Peter Strzok told NBC’s Chuck Todd Sunday that he still believes President Trump to be “compromised by the Russians...I believed at the time in 2016 and I continue to believe that Donald Trump is compromised by the Russians,” Strzok said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” “And when I say that I mean that they hold leverage over him that makes him incapable of placing the national interest, the national security ahead of his own.”

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Peter Strzok

Donald Trump is compromised by the Russians

Former FBI agent Peter Strzok told NBC’s Chuck Todd Sunday that he still believes President Trump to be “compromised by the Russians...I believed at the time in 2016 and I continue to believe that Donald Trump is compromised by the Russians,” Strzok said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” “And when I say that I mean that they hold leverage over him that makes him incapable of placing the national interest, the national security ahead of his own.”

“One of the largest ways that people in foreign governments gain leverage, certainly in the case of the president, is through financial entanglements,” he added. “And I think when you take a look at the Trump financial enterprise, particularly its relationship with Russian, with Russian monies and potentially those related to organized crime and other elements, that those interactions have placed him in a position where the Russians have leverage over him and are able to influence his actions.”

Todd also questioned Strzok about the text messages between himself and FBI attorney Lisa Page, with whom he had an affair. Todd asked Strzok whether he blamed himself for “putt[ing] [himself] in a compromising position” or whether he believed he was treated unfairly.

“I certainly regret sending the text messages that were absolutely weaponized and used to bludgeon the work of the FBI, the work of the special counsel, I'll always regret that,” Strzok conceded.

However, he claimed that “the way that those were weaponized” was part of an ongoing pattern of the Trump administration purging dissenters.

“Whether it is in the impeachment hearings with regard to Ukraine, the whistleblower, or anybody in any number of federal government agencies - if somebody dares speak the truth about this administration, this administration has shown no boundaries in going after people in ways that frankly is shocking, are shocking and are inappropriate,” he said.

Investigative

Craig Unger: American Kompromat

Inside Jeffrey Epstein and Donald Trump's epic bromance

Beginning in the late ’80s, the infamous sex trafficker and the future president (and their mutual friend Ghislaine Maxwell) palled around for almost two decades. In an excerpt from his new book, American Kompromat, Craig Unger exposes their shared tastes for private planes, shady money, and foreign-born models—many of them “on the younger side.”


Pardons

Donald Trump pardons Steve Bannon amid last acts of presidency

Donald Trump has pardoned former senior adviser Steve Bannon, among scores of others including rappers, financiers and former members of Congress in the final hours of his presidency.

Security

One dozen national guard troops pulled from inauguration duties after vetting

One dozen members of the US national guard have been removed from their duties helping to secure Joe Biden’s inauguration after vetting – which included screening for potential ties to rightwing extremism, Pentagon officials said on Tuesday.


Stop the steal

Steve Bannon urged Facebook followers to 'Take Action' on eve of capitol riot

At 2:25 p.m. on Jan. 5, almost exactly 24 hours before the Capitol riots began, Steve Bannon posted a Facebook update: “TAKE ACTION. THEY ARE TRYING TO STEAL THE ELECTION,” the former senior White House adviser urged his followers in a Facebook group he ran called “Own Your Vote.”

Capitol breach

Capitol rioters planned to capture and kill politicians, say prosecutors

Federal prosecutors have offered an ominous new assessment of last week’s siege of the US Capitol by Donald Trump’s supporters, saying in a court filing that rioters intended “to capture and assassinate elected officials”. Prosecutors offered that view in a filing asking a judge to detain Jacob Chansley, the Arizona man and QAnon conspiracy theorist who was photographed wearing horns as he stood at the desk of the vice-president, Mike Pence, in the chamber of the US Senate.

Inauguration

Pentagon authorizes up to 15,000 National Guardsmen

The Pentagon has authorized up to 15,000 National Guardsmen from across the country to deploy to the nation's capital to support law enforcement before and during the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden, defense officials announced Monday.

Washington, Pittsburgh and every state capital

Next Sunday: Twitter warns of widespread new violence to come

Twitter’s extraordinary action against President Trump on Friday night was driven both by the violent rampage of his supporters in Washington and what the company said was a looming “secondary attack” on the U.S. Capitol and state government facilities next weekend — a finding that tracks with the open threats of violence independent researchers have also found across the Web. Calls for widespread protests on the days leading up to the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden have been rampant online for weeks.

Richard Barnett

Capitol mob member who lounged at Nancy Pelosi's desk is arrested

A man photographed lounging with his foot on the desk in House speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office in Washington as part of a pro-Trump mob that breached security and rampaged through the US Capitol was arrested on Friday.

CRISIS AT THE CAPITOL

Background: How a pro-Trump mob stormed the U.S. Capitol

Hundreds of U.S. President Donald Trump’s supporters converged on the Capitol, home to both the U.S. Senate and the House of Representatives, in a bid to overturn his election defeat, occupying the symbol of American democracy and forcing Congress to temporarily postpone a session to certify President-elect Biden’s victory. Rioters forced their way past metal security barricades, broke windows and scaled walls to fight their way into the Capitol, where they roamed the hallways and scuffled with police officers.

Civil War

Woman shot and killed in storming of US Capitol named as Ashli Babbitt

A woman shot and killed by police during the storming of the US Capitol by a pro-Donald Trump mob has been named as a 14-year veteran of the US air force and of four foreign military tours, including to Iraq and Afghanistan. Ashli Babbitt, 35, had travelled to Washington DC from San Diego, her husband told the local news station KUSI, adding that she was a passionate Trump supporter.

Handelsblatt: SPOT FOR G999

Actress Sophia Thomalla advertises dubious blockchain project

A superhero landing: dust swirls up from the ground as Sophia Thomalla (31) falls from the sky in red patent leather gear. Then the actress strides through Dubai’s banking district in red stilettos with her hair blowing. “Change the world” is the motto superimposed on the promotional video. Specifically, Thomalla appears to be opening some kind of virtual account.

PornHub

Millions of videos after investigation finds child abuse content

Pornhub has removed millions of videos – the majority of its content – after an investigation revealed a large number of them featured underaged and sex-trafficked subjects.

Corruption in the White House

Investigating in potential bribery scheme to obtain pardon

The Department of Justice (DOJ) is investigating a potentially criminal scheme involving paying a bribe to people either in or affiliated with the White House in exchange for an unknown person receiving a presidential pardon, according to court documents that were unsealed Tuesday.

Donald Trump's secret weapon

Glenn Greenwald resigns from The Intercept

Journalist Glenn Greenwald has resigned from The Intercept, seven years after co-founding the online publication, citing censorship by his own editors over an article concerning former Vice President Joe Biden.

Jeffrey Epstein

Ghislaine Maxwell deposition unsealed after court ruling

A court document containing potentially sensitive information about Ghislaine Maxwell and her relationship with the late sex offender Jeffrey Epstein was unsealed on Thursday morning in New York just moments before a court-imposed deadline.

Shortnews

Civil War

One Capitol Police officer in critical condition

One Capitol Police officer is in critical condition and 15 were hospitalized after up to 60 officers were injured after a violent pro-Trump mob stormed the Capitol on Wednesday. "I'm livid about the whole thing," said Rep. Tim Ryan (D-Ohio), who added that several police were hit in the lead with lead pipes.

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Civil War

One Capitol Police officer in critical condition

One Capitol Police officer is in critical condition and 15 were hospitalized after up to 60 officers were injured after a violent pro-Trump mob stormed the Capitol on Wednesday. "I'm livid about the whole thing," said Rep. Tim Ryan (D-Ohio), who added that several police were hit in the lead with lead pipes. Ryan chairs the Appropriations subcommittee that funds the more than 2,000-member police force. The panel has opened investigations into the security failure that led to protesters supporting President Trump to breach the Capitol that included entering the House and Senate chambers.

The Ohio Democrat said police were able to hold off the violent mob for an hour and fifteen minutes but backup such as the National Guard did not arrive in time to prevent the crowds from overtaking law enforcement.

Ryan said that the up to 1,500 Capitol Police present plus another 1,000 D.C. Metropolitan Police were overwhelmed by an estimated crowd of up to 20,000 people.

"These were violent people who were swinging lead pipes at cops," Ryan said. "They were hell-bent at bum-rushing the cops."

Police said four people at the Capitol died, including a 12-year Air Force veteran who was shot after she tried to climb through glass broken by protesters near the House chamber.

Top security officials have been under pressure by the security failure after Democratic and Republican lawmakers were left shell-shocked by the threat to their safety in a building considered to be impenetrable.

Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund defended the Capitol Police’s response to Wednesday’s riots, saying the department had a “robust plan” in place ahead of the demonstrations.

ABC News/Ipsos

Joe Biden has more respect for military than Trump

A majority of respondents said that they believe Democratic nominee Joe Biden has more respect for the military than President Trump. The ABC News/Ipsos poll found that 61 percent of respondents said Biden had more respect for the U.S. military, compared to 37 percent who said Trump had more respect. The results were split among partisan lines, with 81 percent of Republicans believing Trump has more respect for the military, and 16 percent of Republicans siding with Biden. Among Democrats, 93 percent said Biden was more respectful of the military, while 7 percent said Trump held the high ground.

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ABC News/Ipsos

Joe Biden has more respect for military than Trump

A majority of respondents said in a new poll that they believe Democratic nominee Joe Biden has more respect for the military than President Trump. The ABC News/Ipsos poll found that 61 percent of respondents said Biden had more respect for the U.S. military, compared to 37 percent who said Trump had more respect. The results were split among partisan lines, with 81 percent of Republicans believing Trump has more respect for the military, and 16 percent of Republicans siding with Biden. Among Democrats, 93 percent said Biden was more respectful of the military, while 7 percent said Trump held the high ground.

Most independents stood with Biden, with 65 percent saying he had a higher respect for the military, compared to 35 percent of independents who said Trump did.

The ABC News/Ipsos poll surveyed 533 adults in the U.S. between Sept. 11 and 12. The margin of error amounted to 4.7 percentage points.

The poll was conducted after Trump faced controversy when The Atlantic published a report that said the president made several disparaging comments about slain military members. Trump has repeatedly denied the allegations.

The Atlantic cited multiple sources when reporting the president canceled a 2018 trip to the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery in France, where Americans who died in World War I are buried, due to concerns about his hair getting ruined in the rain.

He reportedly asked senior staff, “Why should I go to that cemetery? It’s filled with losers.”

Almost 2 in 3 Americans disapprove of Trump's handling of pandemic:...
Biden leads by 5 points nationally in Fox News poll
The sources also said Trump called the U.S. Marines killed at Belleau Wood during the war “suckers” because they had died.

The Associated Press and Fox News have said they confirmed at least some of the reporting.

But the White House has stood by the president, saying at least 25 former and current officials said on the record they did not hear the comments reported in The Atlantic.

Prison Suizide

Inmate found dead with face mask tied around his neck

A Connecticut prison inmate was found dead this week with a cloth mask intended to prevent the spread of the coronavirus tied around his neck. His death was ruled as a suicide by the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner. Daniel Ocasio, 32, was found early on Wednesday with a ligature around his neck. "The ligature was made from the cloth mask issued to the offender population to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus," the statement added. Prison staff tried to help Ocasio by giving him medical attention before he was sent to a hospital and pronounced dead.

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Prison Suizide

Inmate found dead with face mask tied around his neck

A Connecticut prison inmate was found dead this week with a cloth mask intended to prevent the spread of the coronavirus tied around his neck. His death was ruled as a suicide by the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner.

Daniel Ocasio, 32, was found early on Wednesday with a ligature around his neck. "The ligature was made from the cloth mask issued to the offender population to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus," the statement added.

Prison staff tried to help Ocasio by giving him medical attention before he was sent to a hospital and pronounced dead.

Ocasio was a resident of Windsor, Ct. He had been an inmate at the prison facility since August 5 over charges of third-degree burglary, the DOC said.

His bond was set at $10,000, and it is unclear whether he was seeking legal counsel.

His death comes as the prison population has proven to be at an elevated risk of contracting the novel COVID-19 virus due to the close quarters inmates share.

According to an analysis published by researchers at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, the infection rate among inmates is reportedly 5.5 times higher than in the overall U.S. population.

Over 1,300 inmates in Connecticut prisons have tested positive for COVID-19 since the outbreak began in the U.S., the DOC reported.

Following Ocasio's death, the American Civil Liberties Union called for a "full investigation" into the Department of Corrections regarding the situation.

"Daniel Ocasio should still be alive today, and the DOC had a duty to prevent his death," ACLU of Connecticut Executive Director David McGuire said in a statement Friday.

Banevicius told CNN that the DOC investigation is ongoing and did not provide further deatils. However, he added that, "it is saddening and unfortunate when anyone makes the conscious decision to take their own life," he said.

Philipp Amthor

Keine Bestechlichkeit

Die Generalstaatsanwaltschaft Berlin sieht beim CDU-Bundestagsabgeordneten Philipp Amthor keinen Anfangsverdacht einer Bestechlichkeit und einer Bestechung von Mandatsträgern. Das Verfahren wurde eingestellt, ohne Ermittlungen aufzunehmen. Amthor war wegen seiner Nebentätigkeit und Lobbyarbeit für das US-amerikanische IT-Unternehmen Augustus Intelligence in die Kritik geraten. Der 27-Jährige hat die Zusammenarbeit nach eigenen Angaben inzwischen beendet. Seine Kandidatur für den CDU-Vorsitz in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern zog er zurück.

Carlos Ghosn

Befragung im Libanon

Carlos Ghosn will an seinem Aufenthaltsort Beirut im Libanon befragt werden: "Mein Pass ist in den Händen des Generalstaatsanwalts im Libanon, da Japan einen internationalen Haftbefehl gegen mich ausgestellt hat." Japan bemüht sich um die Auslieferung. Ghosn verlangt Sicherheit. Der Architekt des französisch-japanischen Autobündnisses Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi war am 19. November 2018 in Tokio unter anderem wegen Verstoßes gegen Börsenauflagen festgenommen und angeklagt worden. Im April 2019 wurde er auf Kaution entlassen. Ghosn floh in einem Privatjet nach Beirut. Ghosn hatte die Vorwürfe gegen ihn in Japan mehrmals zurückgewiesen.

Ivanka Trump & Jared Kushner

The Secret Service toilet scandal in Washington

Secret Service agents assigned to Ivanka Trump, the president's eldest daughter, and her husband, Jared Kushner, a top White House adviser, have been renting a $3,000 per month studio apartment at taxpayer's expense for the purpose of having a bathroom available, The Washington Post reports.

Siegfried Fischbacher

Illusionist of Siegfried & Roy, dead at 81

Siegfried Fischbacher, an illusionist known for working with exotic cats as one half of Siegfried & Roy, has died from pancreatic cancer, according to his publicist Dave Kirvin. Fischbacher's longtime professional partner and friend, Roy Horn, died in May from complications caused by Covid-19 at the age of 75.

Bee Gees

The Gibb Brothers Songbook Vol 1 review – a missed opportunity

It’s not been tested in a lab, but anecdotal belief holds that sibling harmonies vibrate at particularly sublime frequency. On How Can You Mend a Broken Heart, the illuminating Bee Gees documentary released last month, Noel Gallagher and a Jonas Brother reflect wryly on the vicissitudes of being in a band with your brothers, but also on how uncanny the musical entente can be.

COVID-19

Grammy awards postponed weeks before ceremony over Covid concerns

The 2021 Grammy awards will be postponed after a steady increase in Covid-19 cases in California.

Sauvage Fragrance

Dior sticks by Johnny Depp in defiance of 'wife beater' ruling

Evidence suggests defiant Johnny Depp fans have been buying Dior’s Sauvage fragrance in support of the actor, who continues to be the face of the cologne despite a high court judge finding that he violently abused his ex-wife during their relationship.

The jealous president

Trump rips Lady Gaga, Jon Bon Jovi over support for Biden

President Donald Trump is knocking Joe Biden's celebrity support, saying he's bringing in bigger crowds without his Democratic opponent's star-studded surrogates. Speaking about the former vice president during a Monday campaign rally in Scranton, Pa., Trump went on a riff about Biden's high-profile Hollywood endorsements. "Now he's got Lady Gaga," Trump said, as the crowd booed at the mention of the "Rain on Me" singer, who was poised to campaign with Biden in Pittsburgh on Monday. "I could tell you plenty of stories about Lady Gaga," Trump said. "I know a lot of stories about her."

Support

Eminem lends hand to Biden with 'Lose Yourself' campaign ad

Eminem signaled support for Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden this week by allowing Biden's campaign to use his hit single "Lose Yourself" in a new advertisement.

Johnny Depp's lifestyle

Cocaine binges and $30,000 wine bills

Private islands in the Bahamas, multiple penthouses, gargantuan monthly wine bills, blackout-inducing cocaine binges, drug rehab, trashed location homes and a fortune allegedly syphoned off by business managers – Johnny’s Depp’s Hollywood existence was laid bare during his libel battle with the Sun and ex-wife Amber Heard.

‘wife-beater’

Hollywood assumptions overturned by Johnny Depp's court defeat

The curtain has fallen on the London act of the courtroom drama starring Johnny Depp and Amber Heard – with a final twist that has surprised many in the industry.

Dave Matthews

Trump rallies show 'disregard' for 'his greatest followers'

Dave Matthews is calling out President Trump for campaign rallies featuring largely mask-free crowds amid the coronavirus pandemic, saying they show a "disregard" for the commander in chief's own supporters.

McCartney III

Paul McCartney to release new album recorded alone in lockdown

Paul McCartney is to release a new album made entirely alone during lockdown. McCartney III, comes out on 11 December and will become the third in a loose trilogy of releases for which he has isolated himself from collaborators, after McCartney in 1970 and McCartney II in 1980.

Spencer Davis Group

Spencer Davis dies aged 81

Spencer Davis, who as bandleader with the Spencer Davis Group topped the UK charts twice in the mid-60s, has died aged 81 while being treated for pneumonia in hospital.

24Plus

COVID-19

Riots at the Capitol could be a coronavirus superspreader event

Wednesday, pro-Trump rioters stormed into the Capitol building in Washington, D.C. Prior to that, many in that crowd attended a rally put on by the president and stood around outside the Capitol. Many videos and photos of the people at the Capitol have surfaced, often showing people without masks or face coverings and standing in close proximity to others who were also maskless. Some health experts think this riot could be a superspreader event for COVID-19.


Misinformation 'superspreaders'

Covid vaccine falsehoods still thriving on Facebook and Instagram

Under pressure to contain an avalanche of falsehoods, Facebook announced on 3 December that it would ban debunked claims about the safety and efficacy of vaccines now being distributed worldwide. The company said it removed more than 12m pieces of content from Facebook and Instagram between March and October, and that it worked with factcheckers to place labels on 167 million more pieces of content over the same period.

COVID-19

'Harry Potter' actress posts photo of 3-month-old baby in hospital

“Harry Potter” actress Jessie Cave posted a photo Tuesday of her 3-month-old son in the hospital, saying he tested positive for COVID-19.


“The polls are a mirage”

The polls point to a Biden victory but can they be trusted this time?

For months, activists and Democratic party officials have been telling Joe Biden supporters that the only answer to the question “can we trust the polls?” is to go out and vote for Biden, and then get others to do the same.

Judge rules

Ghislaine Maxwell deposition should be unsealed quickly

Transcripts of interviews lawyers conducted with Ghislaine Maxwell involving her former boyfriend, the late convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, should be released as soon as possible, a New York judge ordered on Tuesday.

Vatican

Pope meets George Pell for first time since cardinal's abuse acquittal

Pope Francis has met George Pell in his first audience with the cardinal since Pell was cleared of child sexual abuse charges in Australia this year. Pell, a former Vatican economy minister, returned to Rome in late September, days after a top Italian cardinal with whom he had long-running differences was asked to resign amid embezzlement claims.

Ronaldo rape case

U.S. judge to hear arguments over hush-money agreement

Cristiano Ronaldo's legal fight against a woman who accuses the international soccer star of raping her in his suite at a Las Vegas resort more than 10 years ago is heading toward a trial before a federal judge in Nevada. No date was immediately set, but U.S. District Judge Jennifer Dorsey said she will hear arguments and decide herself whether Kathryn Mayorga was mentally fit to enter a 2010 hush-money agreement with Ronaldo's representatives that paid Mayorga $375,000.

COVID-19: USA

How CDC takes the citizens for a ride

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control pulled new guidelines acknowledging the new coronavirus could be transmitted by tiny particles that linger in the air, saying a draft version of proposed changes was posted in error on the agency’s website. For months, the CDC said the new coronavirus is primarily transmitted between people in close contact through large droplets that land in the mouths or noses of people nearby. On Friday, however, it added that tiny particles known as aerosols could transmit the virus.

US young adults on the Holocaust

Nearly two-thirds unaware 6m Jews killed

Almost two-thirds of young American adults do not know that 6 million Jews were killed during the Holocaust, and more than one in 10 believe Jews caused the Holocaust, a new survey has found, revealing shocking levels of ignorance about the greatest crime of the 20th century.

Pew Research Center

Donald Trump is the least trusted major world leader

The image of the US and Donald Trump around the world has plunged from poor to the abysmal over the administration’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic, according to a global survey.

How Trumps incapacity is explained

Woodward tapes 'reveal strong leadership' on Covid

The revelation that Donald Trump deliberately downplayed the coronavirus pandemic forced key aides on to desperate defence on Sunday, barely 50 days from the presidential election.

California

Explosive wildfires stoked by fierce winds

Wildfires raged unchecked across parts of the western U.S. on Wednesday amid gusty and dry conditions, but forecasters said some weather relief was in sight that could help firefighters overwhelmed by the blazes.

Dr. Anthony Fauci

Trump official preventing Fauci from discussing Covid children risk

A health official hired by a Donald Trump appointee has been working to prevent Dr Anthony Fauci from talking about dangers that Covid-19 poses to children, Politico reported on Wednesday.

Shortnews

mifepristone

Supreme Court reinstates restrictions on abortion pill

The Supreme Court on Tuesday night granted the Trump administration’s request to reinstate federal rules requiring people seeking medication abortions to obtain the pills in-person from a medical provider. The court’s 6-3 decision along ideological lines halted a lower court ruling that waived Food and Drug Administration rules to allow abortion pills to be distributed by mail during the Covid-19 pandemic.

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mifepristone

Supreme Court reinstates restrictions on abortion pill

The Supreme Court on Tuesday night granted the Trump administration’s request to reinstate federal rules requiring people seeking medication abortions to obtain the pills in-person from a medical provider. The court’s 6-3 decision along ideological lines halted a lower court ruling that waived Food and Drug Administration rules to allow abortion pills to be distributed by mail during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The ruling was the court’s first major action on abortion since Justice Amy Coney Barrett was confirmed to the seat left vacant by the death of liberal Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. In a brief opinion, Chief Justice John Roberts asserted that the case wasn’t about abortion, but rather whether courts could substitute judgment of federal officials at the FDA.

The court’s three liberal justices said they would have denied the Trump administration’s request for a stay. In a dissenting opinion, Justices Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan said federal government rules restricting dispensation of the abortion pill, mifepristone, are medically unnecessary and present “an unnecessary, unjustifiable, irrational, and undue burden” on women.

A short-handed Supreme Court in October had declined to intervene in the same case. That allowed abortion clinics to continue dispensing the pills via telemedicine and through the mail, which they say has kept patients and staff safer during the pandemic.

The Trump administration asked the Supreme Court to reconsider its request after Barrett joined the bench. The administration said continuing to enforce longstanding FDA rules on mifepristone, which was approved 20 years ago, “does not create a substantial burden on abortion access.”

The American Civil Liberties Union, which represented abortion clinics challenging the FDA rules, said no evidence has emerged during the pandemic showing it is riskier for patients to receive the pills at home rather than at a clinic. In a December filing with the Supreme Court, the group argued that with the virus surging nationwide, reinstating the rules would “subject patients to needless and grave health risks.”

Dr. Anthony Fauci

Vaccine is ‘unlikely’ by U.S. election

White House coronavirus advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci said Tuesday a coronavirus vaccine probably won’t be ready by the U.S. presidential election even as the Centers for Disease and Prevention asks states to ready distribution facilities by Nov. 1. At a health conference, Fauci said it’s more likely a vaccine will be ready by “the end of the year” as drug companies Moderna and Pfizer race to complete patient enrollment for their late-stage vaccine trials by the end of September.

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Dr. Anthony Fauci

Vaccine is ‘unlikely’ by U.S. election

White House coronavirus advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci said Tuesday a coronavirus vaccine probably won’t be ready by the U.S. presidential election even as the Centers for Disease and Prevention asks states to ready distribution facilities by Nov. 1.

At a health conference, Fauci said it’s more likely a vaccine will be ready by “the end of the year” as drug companies Moderna and Pfizer race to complete patient enrollment for their late-stage vaccine trials by the end of September.

“It’s unlikely we’ll have a definitive answer” by the Nov. 3 election, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases said at the Research! America 2020 National Health Research Forum.

The comments are also at odds with President Donald Trump, who suggested at a press conference Monday that a vaccine could be ready for distribution by Election Day.

UFO Investigation

Pentagon forms new task force

The Pentagon is forming a new task force to investigate UFO sightings that have been observed on several occasions by U.S. military aircraft. The creation of the Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Task Force, or UAPTF, continues an effort begun in recent years to investigate unexplained aerial incidents encountered by the U.S. military. “The Department of Defense established the UAPTF to improve its understanding of, and gain insight into, the nature and origins of UAPs. The mission of the task force is to detect, analyze and catalog UAPs that could potentially pose a threat to U.S. national security,” the Pentagon wrote in a statement late Friday.

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UFO Investigation

Pentagon forms new task force

The Pentagon is forming a new task force to investigate UFO sightings that have been observed on several occasions by U.S. military aircraft. The creation of the Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Task Force, or UAPTF, continues an effort begun in recent years to investigate unexplained aerial incidents encountered by the U.S. military.

“The Department of Defense established the UAPTF to improve its understanding of, and gain insight into, the nature and origins of UAPs. The mission of the task force is to detect, analyze and catalog UAPs that could potentially pose a threat to U.S. national security,” the Pentagon wrote in a statement late Friday.

“The Department of Defense and the military departments take any incursions by unauthorized aircraft into our training ranges or designated airspace very seriously and examine each report. This includes examinations of incursions that are initially reported as UAP when the observer cannot immediately identify what he or she is observing,” the statement added.

The new task force will be overseen by the Department of the Navy and will report to the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence and Security. The U.S. Navy has previously led efforts to look into unidentified aerial phenomena since the service branch has reported several encounters involving their aircraft.

In April, the Pentagon declassified three videos captured by U.S. Navy pilots that appear to show unidentified flying objects. Two of the videos contain U.S. service members commenting on how quickly the object moves while another speculates that the unidentifiable object could be a drone.

“Dude, this is a f--king drone, bro,” one pilot is heard saying. Another says “there’s a whole fleet of them.”

“They’re all going against the wind. The wind’s 120 knots to the west. Look at that thing, dude!” the first person says. “It’s rotating!”

President Donald Trump has previously described the U.S. Navy footage as “a hell of a video” and told Reuters that he wonders “if it’s real.”

In June, the Senate Intelligence Committee voted that the Pentagon as well as intelligence community leaders should provide a public analysis of the encounters.

England

Jürgen Klopp zum Fußball-Manager des Jahres gewählt

Jürgen Klopp ist nach dem Gewinn der Meisterschaft mit dem FC Liverpool von seinen Trainerkollegen zum Fußball-Manager des Jahres in England gewählt worden. Der Coach erhielt die Sir Alex Ferguson Trophy für seine herausragenden Leistungen. Klopp hatte Liverpool in der abgelaufenen Saison zum ersten Meistertitel seit 30 Jahren geführt. "Das ist sehr besonders für mich, weil ich von meinen Kollegen gewählt worden bin", sagte Klopp. Ferguson, der einst Manchester United zur Weltmarke formte, hob die "außerordentliche" Leistung von Klopps Team hervor. "Du hast es absolut verdient".

Fussball England

Lovren und Lallana verlassen Liverpool

Der kroatische Nationalspieler Dejan Lovren und Adam Lallana verlassen den von Jürgen Klopp trainierten englischen Fußballmeister FC Liverpool. Nach sechs Jahren bei den Reds wechselt der 31 Jahre alte Innenverteidiger Lovren in die russische Premjer-Liga zu Zenit St. Petersburg. Das gaben beide Clubs bekannt. Beim russischen Meister unterschrieb Lovren einen Dreijahresvertrag bis 2023. Lallana zieht es indes zu Brighton and Hove Albion. Beim Premier-League-15. erhält der 32-Jährige einen Dreijahresvertrag.

Business

Rudy Giuliani

Dominion Voting Systems sues for $1.3bn over baseless election claims

Dominion Voting Systems, the voting equipment manufacturer at the centre of baseless election fraud conspiracy theories pushed by Donald Trump and his allies, has sued the former president’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani in a $1.3bn defamation lawsuit. The 107-page complaint, filed in federal court on Monday, accuses the former New York City mayor of having “manufactured and disseminated” a conspiracy theory related to the company’s voting machines.


Sean Spicer

Trump's ex-media chief, applies to join White House press corps

Four years after he kicked off the Trump presidency by lying angrily about the size of the inauguration crowd, the former press secretary Sean Spicer has applied to join the White House press corps.

Gold Standard Banking Group (GSB)

Experts issue warning for G999 and GSB boss Josip Heit

Croatian entrepreneur Josip Heit is the head of Gold Standard Banking Group (GSB) based in Hamburg, Germany. With his company, he has currently released the cryptocurrency G999, which has lost nearly 85 percent of its value since its launch about four weeks ago.


Civil War

Parler may go offline after tech giants reject social network

Parler faces an uncertain future after Amazon reportedly said it would no long host the social network, and Apple suspended it from its App Store over its role in last week’s attack on the US Capitol by a pro-Trump mob.

Donald Trump

Statement by Twitter Inc.: Permanent suspension of @realDonaldTrump

After close review of recent Tweets from the @realDonaldTrump account and the context around them — specifically how they are being received and interpreted on and off Twitter — we have permanently suspended the account due to the risk of further incitement of violence. In the context of horrific events this week, we made it clear on Wednesday that additional violations of the Twitter Rules would potentially result in this very course of action. Our public interest framework exists to enable the public to hear from elected officials and world leaders directly. It is built on a principle that the people have a right to hold power to account in the open.

G999 KryptoScam

G999 in focus: What is Sophia Thomalla promoting?

The year is 2019, and G999 has not yet seen the light of day. In October, the German Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin) bans the Belize-based Karatbit Foundation from continuing to offer the “cryptocurrency” KaratGold Coins (KBC) in Germany. At the same time, the authority orders the liquidation of the Foundation: investors should get their money back. The reason: BaFin classified the business with KGC, a gold-backed token, as an e-money business, which requires a special license to operate in the country.

Morning Joe

Scarborough calls for arrest of Trump, Giuliani and Trump Jr. for insurrection against US

A furious Joe Scarborough on Thursday dropped an f-bomb on live television while talking about the pro-Trump riots at the U.S. Capitol, calling for the arrests of President Trump, Rudy Giuliani and Donald Trump Jr. for insurrection. The MSNBC host issued a fiery condemnation of the Capitol Police response to the mob while speaking on “Morning Joe,” questioning why the group of predominately white Trump supporters were not forcefully stopped from breaching the complex.

63 million households

Bridgerton has swept Netflix viewers off their feet

Bridgerton was the diamond of Netflix’s holiday season. According to the streamer, the romantic, Regency-era series—created by Chris Van Dusen and produced by Shonda Rhimes, who has a multimillion-dollar Netflix deal—was a ratings hit.

30 November 2020

Dollar plumbs two-year low as Fed comes in to focus

The dollar fell to a more than two-year low on Monday and is set to log its largest monthly fall since July, as a combination of vaccine optimism and bets on more monetary easing in the United States drives investors out of the world’s reserve currency.

FOX Fake News

Fox News's Tucker Carlson mocked for 'lost in the mail' Biden documents claim

The Fox News host Tucker Carlson has been mocked for his attempt to explain why he could not produce some documents he had promised relating to Joe Biden. He said the only copy of the papers, which he claimed added to claims about Biden’s son Hunter, had been lost.

whistleblower

SEC announces record-breaking $114 million reward

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has awarded a whistleblower more than $114 million, the agency announced Thursday, its highest ever reward for information that led to a successful crackdown. The whistleblower was awarded $52 million for aiding the SEC and another $62 million for helping another unidentified agency with a related enforcement action.

CBS

Donald Trump abruptly ends '60 Minutes' interview

President Donald Trump abruptly ended a solo interview with CBS News' "60 Minutes" Tuesday and did not return for an appearance he was supposed to tape with Vice President Mike Pence, according to multiple sources familiar with what happened. After camera crews set up at the White House on Monday, Trump sat down with host Lesley Stahl for about 45 minutes on Tuesday before he abruptly ended the interview and told the network he believed they had enough material to use, according to two sources.

Axel-Springer-Verlag

Umfassende Nachfolgeregelung

Friede Springer schenkt dem Vorstandsvorsitzenden von Axel Springer (WELT, „Bild“), Mathias Döpfner, einen großen Teil ihrer Anteile an dem Medienkonzern. Im Gespräch mit der Deutschen Presse-Agentur haben die beiden diesen Schritt erläutert und erklärt, was noch kommen wird.

Shortnews

Palantir

Valued around $10.5 billion ahead of direct listing

As Palantir gears up for its stock market debut, the company has a long way to go to convince potential shareholders that it’s worth the $20 billion price tag that investors gave it almost five years ago. Palantir held a virtual event for investors on Wednesday. The company, whose software helps government agencies and large corporations make sense of vast amounts of data, also released an updated prospectus, indicating that the number of shares outstanding increased in the third quarter, to 1.64 billion from 1.53 billion in the prior period.

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Palantir

Valued around $10.5 billion ahead of direct listing

As Palantir gears up for its stock market debut, the company has a long way to go to convince potential shareholders that it’s worth the $20 billion price tag that investors gave it almost five years ago. Palantir held a virtual event for investors on Wednesday. The company, whose software helps government agencies and large corporations make sense of vast amounts of data, also released an updated prospectus, indicating that the number of shares outstanding increased in the third quarter, to 1.64 billion from 1.53 billion in the prior period.

Based on an average share price transaction in the latest quarter of $6.45, investors are valuing the company at just over $10.5 billion.

In July, Palantir raised $410.5 million by selling shares at $4.75 a piece, according to the filing, which comes out to a valuation of about $7.8 billion. Transactions during the quarter took place at anywhere from $4.17 a share to $11.50 a share, suggesting a range of $6.83 billion to $18.8 billion.

The math gets even fuzzier when considering that Palantir had a reported valuation of $20.4 billion in 2015, when the share price was $11.38. That price, based on the supplied share count as of Sept. 1, would indicate a current valuation of $18.6 billion.

What’s clear is that most investors see a company that’s worth closer to $10 billion than $20 billion. If Palantir’s direct listing values it at around the average private market price, the stock will trade at about 10 times revenue, a healthy ratio but less than one-fourth the price-to-sales multiple for companies like Zoom, Datadog, Shopify and Zscaler.

In the first half of 2020, Palantir’s total revenue jumped 49% to $481.2 million, with just over half its sales coming from government customers. Costs for sales and marketing and research and development dropped, allowing Palantir to narrow its net loss to $164.7 million from $280.5 million.

But Palantir remains a very expensive product that hardly anyone uses — the opposite of Zoom or Slack. It’s not an easy-to-use application that employees try out with a small team and then convince their colleagues to adopt. Rather, Palantir describes its technology as the “central operating system” that companies use for their data.

American Airlines

Employees may wear Black Lives Matter pins

American Airlines will permit its employees to wear Black Lives Matter pins while on the job, a spokesperson confirmed on Tuesday. Several Black employees of American Airlines asked if they could wear Black Lives Matter pins after seeing workers at other airlines wearing them. “In light of the appropriate attention to lives of Black Americans, we will allow team members who wish to wear a Black Lives Matter pin to do so if they choose,” American Airlines announced.

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American Airlines

Employees may wear Black Lives Matter pins

American Airlines will permit its employees to wear Black Lives Matter pins while on the job, a spokesperson confirmed on Tuesday. Several Black employees of American Airlines asked if they could wear Black Lives Matter pins after seeing workers at other airlines wearing them.

“In light of the appropriate attention to lives of Black Americans, we will allow team members who wish to wear a Black Lives Matter pin to do so if they choose,” American Airlines announced.

“Fundamentally, we believe Black Lives Matter is an expression of equality, not a political statement,” she added. “It doesn’t mean other lives don’t matter, rather that in our society Black lives should matter and be valued the same as others.”

The airline will work with Black employees to design the pin.

American Airlines permits its employees to wear up to three pins, including a single Employee Business Resource Groups pin. The airline has developed pins for different groups, including Christian, veteran and LGBTQ groups, among others.

The airline joins several other companies including Delta Air Lines and Starbucks in allowing workers to wear a pin backing the movement.

Starbucks initially banned employees from wearing anything in support of Black Lives Matter in June, shortly after protests erupted over the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis in late May.

But the corporation backtracked on its decision within a week and developed a T-shirt for its employees to wear.

There was a mixed reaction on the American Airlines’ decision on social media, with several people labeling Black Lives Matter as a “Marxist” or a “terrorist organization.”

President Trump called Black Lives Matter a “Marxist organization” during an interview last week with Fox News host Laura Ingraham and said the movement is “bad for Black people.”

The president had encouraged a boycott against Goodyear Tire after a local NBC News affiliate in Topeka, Kan., reported that the company named “Black Lives Matter” and “Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender pride” as an acceptable slogan to wear, while listing “Blue Lives Matter,” “All Lives Matter” and “MAGA attire” as “unacceptable.”

Mark Zuckerberg

Failure to take down Kenosha militia group

Mark Zuckerberg acknowledged that Facebook failed to take down a page and event calling for an armed response to anti-police brutality protests in Kenosha, Wis., despite users reporting them. The Facebook CEO said during a Q&A with employees Friday that was later posted onto this public page that “it was largely an operational mistake. It's because the team that enforces our policy against dangerous organizations is a specialized team,” he explained.

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Mark Zuckerberg

Failure to take down Kenosha militia group

Mark Zuckerberg acknowledged that Facebook failed to take down a page and event calling for an armed response to anti-police brutality protests in Kenosha, Wis., despite users reporting them. The Facebook CEO said during a Q&A with employees Friday that was later posted onto this public page that “it was largely an operational mistake. It's because the team that enforces our policy against dangerous organizations is a specialized team,” he explained.

“The contractors and the reviewers who the initial complaints were funneled to basically didn't pick this up, and on second review, doing it more sensitively, the team … that's responsible for dangerous organizations recognized that this violated the policies and we took it down.”

Facebook on Wednesday took down a page for the “Kenosha Guard” and an event promoted by the page called "Armed Citizens to Protect our Lives" for violating the platform’s policy against militia organizations.

The night before it was removed, during protests over the police shooting of a 29-year-old Black man, Jacob Blake, two people were shot dead and another was injured.

Police have charged Kyle Rittenhouse, 17, in connection with the shooting.

A spokesperson for Facebook told The Hill at the time that there was no evidence that Rittenhouse “followed the Kenosha Guard Page or that he was invited on the Event Page they organized.”

Facebook’s failure to take down a page which asked if “any patriots [are] willing to take up arms and defend our city tonight from the evil thugs?” before violence happened falls into a predictable and dangerous pattern for the platform, according to Color of Change Executive Director Rashad Robinson.

“They are never ready for these things,” the head of the civil rights advocacy group told The Hill in an interview. “You’re telling me that they just weren’t ready for this idea of a white nationalist militia rising up?”

Color of Change, along with several other civil rights groups, has been escalating its criticism of Facebook’s handling of hateful and violent content for months.

The organizations put together an advertising boycott that hundreds of businesses signed onto, and have had several discussions with the platform’s leadership concerning concrete steps they say it should take.

Issues with dealing with this content were also highlighted in an independent civil rights audit released last month, which criticized Facebook for failing to develop a mechanism for protecting civil rights and for a hands-off approach when it comes to free speech, even in cases of violent posts.

Internal criticism of Facebook leadership’s approach to violence fomented on its platform has also grown, especially after the platform left up a post from President Trump saying that “when the looting starts, the shooting starts” in response to protests over the police killing of George Floyd.

Multiple employees have been publicly critical of Zuckerberg. BuzzFeed News reported that during Friday’s employee Q&A, staffers questioned the CEO’s decision-making and approach to violent content.

“At what point do we take responsibility for enabling hate filled bile to spread across our services?” one employee reportedly wrote in the live chat. “[A]nti semitism, conspiracy, and white supremacy reeks across our services.”

Facebook has taken some steps to address hateful and dangerous groups on its platform.

Earlier this month, it expanded its policy on violent rhetoric to crackdown on groups affiliated with the baseless QAnon conspiracy theory as well as militia and anarchist groups.

For Robinson, those changes miss the heart of the problem.

Facebook needs to change the “incentive structures inside their platform,” he said, hitting the company for prioritizing profit over safety.

Commerce Department

U.S. consumer spending rose more slowly

U.S. consumers boosted their spending in July, but more slowly than in prior months as new coronavirus infections rose and the expiration of enhanced unemployment checks loomed. Spending numbers have come back more than the economy as a whole, with the help of a lot of fiscal support. The question going forward is as fiscal support wanes, to what extent will it weaken.” Personal-consumption expenditures, a measure of household spending on everything from haircuts to new cars, increased a seasonally adjusted 1.9% in July from the prior month, the Commerce Department said Friday.

US Economy

Weekly jobless claims jump back above 1 million

The number of people filing for unemployment benefits last week was greater than expected, raising concern about the state of the economy as lawmakers struggle to move forward on a new coronavirus stimulus package. The Labor Department said initial jobless claims for the week ending Aug. 15 came in at 1.106 million. Economists polled by Dow Jones expected a total of 923,000. Initial claims for the previous week were also revised higher by 8,000 to 971,000. Last week’s spike in claims came as Democrats and Republicans struggle to move forward on a new coronavirus stimulus bill.

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US Economy

Weekly jobless claims jump back above 1 million

The number of people filing for unemployment benefits last week was greater than expected, raising concern about the state of the economy as lawmakers struggle to move forward on a new coronavirus stimulus package.

The Labor Department said initial jobless claims for the week ending Aug. 15 came in at 1.106 million. Economists polled by Dow Jones expected a total of 923,000. Initial claims for the previous week were also revised higher by 8,000 to 971,000.

Last week’s spike in claims came as Democrats and Republicans struggle to move forward on a new coronavirus stimulus bill.

Democratic lawmakers want to keep an additional unemployment benefit of $600 per week that was included in previous aid package. Republicans, meanwhile, have indicated they want to extend the additional benefit at a lower rate.

Companies

after his presidency

Is Donald Trump's brand 'radioactive' or will he reinvent himself once again

Now that he's out of office, former President Donald Trump faces a daunting challenge: rehabilitating his brand after it's been tarnished by a tumultuous presidency that ended with riots at the U.S. Capitol and a second impeachment. The good news for Trump: More than 74 million Americans voted for him and might be willing to stay at his hotels, golf at his resorts and buy his products, such as shirts, golf accessories and jewelry. The bad news: Business experts say many companies are expected to keep him at a distance, treating him as bad for business.


After the White House

Trump staffers are mysteriously having trouble finding a new job

With less than a week to go in the Trump White House, staffers are reportedly frantically looking for their next gig. They’re not having a lot of luck.

Media

Anna Wintour defends Vogue's controversial Kamala Harris cover

Anna Wintour has spoken about the controversy over Vogue’s Kamala Harris cover, accused online of whitewashing and disrespecting the vice-president-elect. Vogue’s editor-in-chief defended the choice of shot for the February cover, which showed Harris wearing Converse trainers.


Facebook

Trump to regain ability to tweet, but ban to continue

President Trump will regain the ability to use his personal Twitter account on Thursday, but will continue to be restricted from posting on his Facebook or Instagram accounts through at least the end of his term, following the pro-Trump mob that stormed the U.S. Capitol Wednesday.

Arcadia

Topshop owner faces collapse within hours

Sir Philip Green's retail empire Arcadia, which includes Topshop, Burton and Dorothy Perkins, could face collapse within hours. The company is likely to enter administration on Monday (30.11.2020), putting 13,000 jobs at risk.

Antitrust Regulation

US justice department sues Google over accusation of illegal monopoly

The US justice department filed a lawsuit against Google on Tuesday, accusing the tech company of abusing its position to maintain an illegal monopoly over search and search advertising.

Election 2020

Microsoft takes down massive hacking operation

Microsoft has disrupted a massive hacking operation that it said could have indirectly affected election infrastructure if allowed to continue. The company said Monday it took down the servers behind Trickbot, an enormous malware network that criminals were using to launch other cyberattacks, including a strain of highly potent ransomware.

militarized social movements

Facebook cracking down on QAnon

Facebook is taking steps to hide content from groups affiliated with QAnon, a conspiracy theory that revolves around President Trump fighting a deep state that includes a secret global cabal of pedophiles. The company announced in a blog post on Thursday that it will ban all advertising that expresses "praise, support or represent militarized social movements and QAnon."

Cyrus Vance

Donald Trump could face tax fraud probe

Manhattan’s district attorney said on Monday he might have grounds to investigate President Donald Trump and his businesses for tax fraud, as he seeks to persuade a federal appeals court to let him obtain Trump’s tax returns. Lawyers for District Attorney Cyrus Vance made the assertion in a filing with the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan, four days before it considers Trump’s request to block Vance’s August 2019 subpoena for the tax returns.

Apple

Tech giant unveils new watch series 6

Apple showed off its latest smartwatch with faster computing power and an ability to measure blood oxygen as well as updated iPads on Tuesday as interest rises in such devices among homebound users looking for help tracking exercise and logging hours of remote work and learning.

Mike Bloomberg

$100m to help Biden beat Trump in Florida

The former New York mayor and candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination Mike Bloomberg will spend at least $100m to support Joe Biden in Florida, in an attempt to counter any infusion of personal cash by Donald Trump and to seek a decisive victory in early voting.

mismanaging the coronavirus crisis

LVMH plans to sue Tiffany over troubled deal

Louis Vuitton owner LVMH said Thursday it intends to file a lawsuit against Tiffany. The news comes a day after after Tiffany sued LVMH for trying to get out of a $16.2 billion deal to buy the upscale jewelry chain. LVMH said Tiffany has mismanaged the coronavirus crisis and called its recent financials “very disappointing.”

What we learn from history

Why Apple's success story can come to an end

Many investors seem to believe that today’s giant technology companies will dominate the stock market for decades to come. Years, maybe. Decades, probably not.

Shortnews

COVID-19: USA

Goldman Sachs announces return to work

Goldman Sachs is going back to work. The banking giant told staff on Wednesday that it would start letting people back into its offices in the coming weeks after shutting most of them down in March amid the coronavirus pandemic. In a memo to staff, Goldman’s chief executive officer, David Solomon, said staff around the world would soon be notified of plans to allow people to return to their offices. Staff will return on a rotational basis in some offices and the plans will vary depending on local, business and personal circumstances.

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COVID-19: USA

Goldman Sachs announces return to work

Goldman Sachs is going back to work. The banking giant told staff on Wednesday that it would start letting people back into its offices in the coming weeks after shutting most of them down in March amid the coronavirus pandemic. In a memo to staff, Goldman’s chief executive officer, David Solomon, said staff around the world would soon be notified of plans to allow people to return to their offices. Staff will return on a rotational basis in some offices and the plans will vary depending on local, business and personal circumstances.

“Over the coming days and weeks, colleagues in those offices will hear from their divisional, business and/or local leadership about what to expect for the months ahead, including team rotations in the office where possible, with the goal of giving everyone who can do so an opportunity to come in to their office,” Solomon said.

“Importantly, this rotational approach will not look the same for everyone, as we each navigate unique personal responsibilities – for example, planning around adjusted school schedules, managing personal and family health conditions, and not being comfortable commuting to the office during peak hours, among many other considerations,” Solomon said.

JP Morgan announced similar plans last month and is planning to allow staff to cycle between days at the office and at home. But while the banks are making moves to return to a situation closer to their pre-pandemic working arrangements, JP Morgan has estimated a quarter of its close to 61,000 staff could still be working from home for the foreseeable future.

Six biggest tech stocks

More than $1 trillion in value lost in three days

The six biggest tech stocks have lost more than $1 trillion over the last three days alone, but it’s really just a dent coming off a huge rally that peaked last week. Apple, which hit a $2 trillion market cap on Aug. 19, is down about $325 billion in that time period. Microsoft’s down $219 billion, Amazon fell $191 billion, Alphabet cratered by $135 billion, and Tesla, which fell 21% on Tuesday to mark its worst single-day loss in its history, is down $109 billion in the last three days.

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Six biggest tech stocks

More than $1 trillion in value lost in three days

The six biggest tech stocks have lost more than $1 trillion over the last three days alone, but it’s really just a dent coming off a huge rally that peaked last week. Apple, which hit a $2 trillion market cap on Aug. 19, is down about $325 billion in that time period. Microsoft’s down $219 billion, Amazon fell $191 billion, Alphabet cratered by $135 billion, and Tesla, which fell 21% on Tuesday to mark its worst single-day loss in its history, is down $109 billion in the last three days.

Finally, Facebook is off by $89 billion.

“In general, if you think about the market cap loss over the last 3 days for Apple, it’s about $325 billion. To help put that in perspective, that’s about 1.5 Salesforces, and equivalent to Apple’s projected revenues for the next calendar year,” Jefferies’ Jared Weisfeld told CNBC’s “Fast Money” on Tuesday.

Despite the huge number, it’s worth keeping in perspective given the tech giants’ massive rise in value this year.

At the beginning of 2020, the six largest tech companies were worth about $5 trillion. On Wednesday, Sept. 2, they peaked with a value of $8.2 trillion. After Tuesday’s close, they have a combined market cap of $7.1 trillion. While it’s a big loss over a few days, these six companies are still worth $2.1 trillion more than they were at the beginning of the year -- despite the global coronavirus pandemic and record job losses in the U.S.

Apple

Epic Games’ App Store account suspended

Apple on Friday said it suspended Epic Games’ developer account. It follows a temporary restraining order on Monday evening, in which a judge ruled that Apple can block Fortnite but not Epic’s developer account. However, Apple said it terminated an Epic developer account that does not include the Unreal Engine that’s used by third-party developers to make 3D games, which keeps the move in line with the judge’s order. ″We are disappointed that we have had to terminate the Epic Games account on the App Store. We have worked with the team at Epic Games for many years on their launches and releases,” Apple said.

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Apple

Epic Games’ App Store account suspended

Apple on Friday said it suspended Epic Games’ developer account. It follows a temporary restraining order on Monday evening, in which a judge ruled that Apple can block Fortnite but not Epic’s developer account.

However, Apple said it terminated an Epic developer account that does not include the Unreal Engine that’s used by third-party developers to make 3D games, which keeps the move in line with the judge’s order.

″We are disappointed that we have had to terminate the Epic Games account on the App Store. We have worked with the team at Epic Games for many years on their launches and releases,” Apple said.

“The court recommended that Epic comply with the App Store guidelines while their case moves forward, guidelines they’ve followed for the past decade until they created this situation. Epic has refused. Instead they repeatedly submit Fortnite updates designed to violate the guidelines of the App Store.

This is not fair to all other developers on the App Store and is putting customers in the middle of their fight. We hope that we can work together again in the future, but unfortunately that is not possible today.”

An Epic Games spokesperson pointed CNBC to a blog post with earlier comments, including: “Apple is asking that Epic revert Fortnite to exclusively use Apple payments. Their proposal is an invitation for Epic to collude with Apple to maintain their monopoly over in-app payments on iOS, suppressing free market competition and inflating prices. As a matter of principle, we won’t participate in this scheme.”

Epic Games’ titles, including Fortnite, have been a huge success, including through Apple’s App Store.

“We estimate that, since January 2012, Epic Games’ mobile titles have been downloaded more than 159 million times across Apple’s App Store globally, generating approximately $1.2 billion in consumer spending,” Stephanie Chan, mobile insights strategist for Sensor Tower, an app analytics company, told CNBC.

“Thirty percent of this revenue, or approximately $360 million, went to Apple.”

The battle between Apple and Epic Games started after Epic included a new direct purchase option inside Fortnite that circumvented Apple’s 30% revenue cut from in-app purchases. Apple pulled the app from the App Store on the same day and, shortly after, Epic Games filed a lawsuit.

Apple said it provided Epic Games 14 days to update Fortnite to meet its app store guidelines, after which it would suspend Epic Games’ account. Apple said this is standard practice for all developers.

The suspension means Epic Games can no longer submit games or updates to games, like Fortnite, for publication to the iOS and Mac App Stores. While people who already have the game installed can still play it, they just won’t get any updates. Players also can’t buy any in-game content. They also can’t play the new Fortnite season, which recently launched.

Apple said that Fortnite’s users have been directed by Epic Games to contact AppleCare, and that those requests have caused refund quality issues and support problems for Apple users around the world.

MGM Resorts lays off 18,000 workers

MGM Resorts lays off 18,000 workers

MGM Resorts International is laying off 18,000 furloughed workers in the U.S. as a global travel slowdown impedes the casino industry’s recovery from the ongoing pandemic. The job cuts, which start Monday, represent about one-fourth of the company’s pre-pandemic workforce of 68,000 U.S. employees. After casino shutdowns and furloughs in March, the continuing spread of coronavirus in the U.S. has prevented the rebound of many industries, including hospitality, airlines and oil extraction.

Google

Noch ein Jahr im Home-Office

Noch ein Jahr Heimarbeit: Google will für die kommenden zwölf Monate Heimarbeit. Firmenchef Sundar Pichai hat die Entscheidung vergangene Woche nach einer internen Debatte getroffen. Die Google-Mutter Alphabet hatte Ende vergangenen Jahres etwa 119.000 Vollzeit-Mitarbeiter. Der Internet-Konzern legt sich damit als eines der ersten großen Unternehmen auf eine sehr späte Rückkehr in die Büros fest. Zugleich gaben einige Tech-Unternehmen wie etwa Twitter ihren Mitarbeiter bereits die Freiheit, auch nach dem Ende der Corona-Pandemie weiter uneingeschränkt von zuhause arbeiten zu dürfen.

Sport

Klete Keller

Why did an Olympic champion invade the US Capitol?

Klete Keller was somebody, a two-time Olympic gold medallist who swam in three Games. Then he was nobody, aimless, penniless and reduced to sleeping in his car. Now he is “Person 1” in court documents, identified by the FBI as a participant in the storming of the US Capitol and charged with federal crimes.


Klete Keller

Gold medalist Olympic swimmer recognized amid Capitol mob

Klete Keller, a swimmer and two-time Olympic gold medal winner for the United States, was recognized by former teammates and coaches as one of the participants in the deadly pro-Trumb mob that overtook the Capitol last week.

New England Patriots

Coach Bill Belichick says he won't accept Presidential Medal of Freedom

New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick declined to accept the Presidential Medal of Freedom on Monday after last week's deadly insurrection at the U.S. Capitol.


Bedminster stripped of 2022 US PGA

New Jersey: Bedminster stripped of 2022 US PGA

The R&A has appeared to rule out Turnberry hosting the Open golf championship while it remains in the hands of Donald Trump - with its chief executive warning that they will not return to the Scottish course until they are “convinced that the focus will be on the championship”.

Formula One

Hamilton says 'horrifying' Grosjean crash a reminder of danger

Lewis Hamilton praised Formula One and motor racing's governing body for its constant push for greater safety after Romain Grosjean limped away from a fiery crash at the Bahrain Grand Prix on Sunday.

World Series

Turner rebuked by MLB for returning to field after positive Covid-19 test

Major League Baseball issued a scathing rebuke to Los Angeles Dodgers third baseman Justin Turner after he returned to the field with his team-mates following their World Series-clinching Game 6 win having tested positive for Covid-19.

bankruptcy

Boris Becker accused of hiding tennis trophies

Boris Becker has been charged with concealing trophies and medals won during his illustrious tennis career, including two from his three Wimbledon singles victories, from bankruptcy trustees.

GRU

Russia planned cyber-attack on Tokyo Olympics

Russian military intelligence services were planning a cyber-attack on the Japanese-hosted Olympics and Paralympics in Tokyo this summer in an attempt to disrupt the world’s premier sporting event, the UK National Cyber Security Centre has revealed, disclosing a joint operation with the US intelligence agencies.

Formula One

Sebastian Vettel joined Aston Martin

Having announced he will join the Racing Point team in 2021, Sebastian Vettel has revealed he came close to leaving Formula One before closing the new deal. Vettel has driven for Ferrari for the past five years but his contract was not renewed by the Scuderia earlier this year leaving him without a drive.

accidental hit of line judge

Novak Djokovic out of U.S. Open

Novak Djokovic, the No. 1 men’s player and No. 1 seed, was defaulted from the United States Open on Sunday after inadvertently striking a lineswoman with a ball hit in frustration.

Soccer

Lionel Messi confirms he will stay at Barcelona

Lionel Messi is staying at Barcelona. Ten days after he served official notice of his determination to walk out of the Camp Nou, he finally announced that he would not be going after all – not because he had changed his mind, but because he had been left with no choice.

Pelicans' Josh Hart on Donald Trump

'What a dumbass'

New Orleans Pelicans shooting guard Josh Hart on Tuesday mocked President Trump over his claim that protests by NBA players have caused the league's ratings to slump.

Black Live Matter

Athletes have the power to bring change

We are all George Hill – exhausted, dejected and mad as hell, quite frankly. Whether a white ally who has committed to the fight for racial justice or a black American whose very existence, it seems, is an act of unlawful protest in this country or somewhere in between, you could identify with the searing frustration that seeped from the Milwaukee Bucks guard after yet another unarmed black man being gunned down by the boys in blue.

Shortnews

Black Live Matter

NBA flexes muscle amid partisan attacks

When the Milwaukee Bucks refused to play their playoff game against the Orlando Magic in outrage over the police shooting of Jacob Blake on Wednesday, the NBA — already maligned by some as being too political — took a giant step to the forefront on one of America’s most pressing social issues. Fellow players and athletes from other American sports quickly hailed the historic action, forcing the NBA and other leagues to postpone games over multiple days.

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Black Live Matter

NBA flexes muscle amid partisan attacks

When the Milwaukee Bucks refused to play their playoff game against the Orlando Magic in outrage over the police shooting of Jacob Blake on Wednesday, the NBA — already maligned by some as being too political — took a giant step to the forefront on one of America’s most pressing social issues.

Fellow players and athletes from other American sports quickly hailed the historic action, forcing the NBA and other leagues to postpone games over multiple days.

But the crowd that already had ire for the league, including President Trump and his allies, mocked the NBA players, suggesting that their activism was hollow.

“I think the NBA players are very fortunate that they have the financial position where they're able to take a night off from work without having to have the consequences for themselves financially,” senior White House adviser Jared Kushner said Thursday. “So they have that luxury, which is great.”

While talking to the press later about Hurricane Laura, President Trump called the NBA a “political organization.”

“They’ve become like a political organization, and that’s not a good thing,” Trump said of the NBA, a league where the players are nearly 75 percent Black. “I don’t think that’s a good thing for sports or for the country.”

Fox News host Laura Ingraham, who controversially told NBA front man LeBron James to “shut up and dribble” in 2018, tweeted: “Good. Make it permanent.”

The NBA and its players had already shown strong support for the Black Lives Matter movement since it returned to action from its coronavirus pandemic-induced hiatus at the end of July.

Black Lives Matter is emblazoned on NBA courts in the Orlando “bubble” on the DisneyWorld campus where teams are playing, and players have put messages on their jerseys such as “Say her name,” “Education reform” and “Enough.”

The messages are intended to send a message about racial justice and ensure the names of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Rayshard Brooks and others Black people killed by police are not forgotten.

Floyd was killed by Minneapolis police when a white office knelt on his neck for nearly 9 minutes. Taylor was shot and killed by Louisville police while in her own home in March as officers enforced a controversial “no-knock” warrant. In June, Brooks was shot and killed by a white Atlanta police officer in Wendy’s parking lot.

The boycott Wednesday initially appeared like it might end the NBA season, but the decision to resume play appears to signal the NBA player interest in continuing to use their platform to push for change.

“We had a candid, impassioned and productive conversation yesterday between NBA players, coaches and team governors regarding next steps to further our collective efforts and actions in support of social justice and racial equality,” NBPA Executive Director Michele Roberts and NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said in a joint statement.

The duo stated that teams within the playoff bubble were returning to play “with the understanding that” the league would work with teams to focus on a slate of civil and voting rights programs.

Scott Rochelle, president and CEO of National Basketball Retired Players Association, said that former players were “shocked” by the ability of current players to “effectuate that type of change.”

“Our players have been on the frontline on many social justice issues and they have been vocal their entire lives, but never have they been able to witness this type of immediate impact on the game of basketball.”

Rochelle added: “The player’s passion hasn’t changed, the access to power is what really is at the forefront right now.”

Former NBA player Kenny Smith — who in solidarity with the players walked off the set of TNT’s NBA pregame show which he co-hosts — pushed back against the idea that the players’ actions on Wednesday were political in an interview with CNN’s Wolf Blitzer.

“No. It shows you have power,” Smith told Blitzer, adding that players were citizens with voices. “Sometimes you have to wake people up with a cold glass of water.”

One of the new initiatives being put in place after the boycotts this week will see NBA arenas, currently sitting empty because of the pandemic, become polling sites in November.

Another by-product of talks is the establishment of a “social justice coalition” that will include players, coaches and state governors. The coalition will focus on issues like “increasing access to voting, promoting civic engagement, and advocating for meaningful police and criminal justice reform,” the statement from Silver and Roberts states.

Ronald Koeman

New Barcelona manager

Ronald Koeman is set to be appointed the new Barcelona manager this week to take over from Quique Setién. The former Barcelona player, and assistant manager, will leave his role as Netherlands coach to take over at the Camp Nou in time for the new season. Setién’s days looked numbered even before the humiliating 8-2 defeat against Bayern Munich on Friday and he will leave after seven uncomfortable months. Barcelona finished five points behind Real Madrid in the league and lost to Athletic Bilbao at the quarter-final stage in the Spanish Cup.

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Ronald Koeman

New Barcelona manager

Ronald Koeman is set to be appointed the new Barcelona manager this week to take over from Quique Setién. The former Barcelona player, and assistant manager, will leave his role as Netherlands coach to take over at the Camp Nou in time for the new season.

Setién’s days looked numbered even before the humiliating 8-2 defeat against Bayern Munich on Friday and he will leave after seven uncomfortable months.

Barcelona finished five points behind Real Madrid in the league and lost to Athletic Bilbao at the quarter-final stage in the Spanish Cup. It is the first time in the past 12 years that the club have ended a season trophyless.

Koeman had already turned Barça down, in January, when the club were looking for a replacement for Ernesto Valverde, but this time he could not resist the challenge.

The original preference for the Barça president, Josep Maria Bartomeu, was to hire Mauricio Pochettino but some board members were against that considering the former Espanyol manager once said that he would rather go and work on a farm than manage Barcelona.

NHL Hockey

LA Kings suspend mascot amid sexual harassment allegations

The Los Angeles Kings have suspended the man who portrays the Kings' "Bailey" lion mascot following a sexual harassment lawsuit filed by a former member of the hockey team's ice crew. Tim Smith, the now-suspended mascot, has also served as a senior manager of game presentation and events for the Kings. A woman who was hired onto the team's ice crew in 2018 filed the suit against Smith, the team, and the Kings owner AEG. The lawsuit is seeking over $1 million in damages, the report added. The woman alleges that Smith made lewd jokes and inappropriate sexual comments before firing her when she confronted and condemned his actions.

Borussia Dortmund

Real Madrid youngster Reinier Jesus to joint BVB

Borussia Dortmund are set to sign Real Madrid youngster Reinier Jesus on a one-year loan with an option for another season. The 18-year-old joined Real Madrid in a €30 million transfer from Flamengo in January but has yet to make his senior debut for the La Liga champions. He is now unlikely to make his debut for Los Blancos during the 2021-20 season. Sources confirmed that Dortmund are close to sealing the loan deal for Reinier and he could join his new teammates once they return from their training camp in Switzerland early next week. The agreement will not include a buy option for the Brazil under-23 international.