Federal judges appointed by both Republican and Democratic presidents have struck down every Trump campaign allegation of widespread voter fraud.'The right thing' »
It was only recently that U.S. Rep. Denver Riggleman, R-Va., had his epiphany: The supporters of President Trump were starting to resemble the people who he used to hang out with more than 15 years ago when — mostly as a lark — he would go on expeditions to the Pacific Northwest looking for Bigfoot. “It was almost a cult or a religious belief system,” Riggleman said about his Bigfoot hunting days in an interview for the Yahoo News podcast “Skullduggery.” Riggleman, then a National Security Agency contractor, never saw any sign of the mythical hairy behemoth believed by some to be hiding deep in the far-flung forests of North America.
With an eviction moratorium issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in September set to expire at the end of the month, and Congress and the White House still unable to pass a new coronavirus relief bill, Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., has renewed her push for legislation that would cancel mortgage and rent payments through the duration of the pandemic. In April, Omar originally introduced legislation that would cancel all mortgage and rent payments during the pandemic, a position pushed by activists across the country. The plan includes a relief fund for landlords and mortgage holders to cover losses incurred from missed payments.
The US Department of Justice investigated an attorney for Jared Kushner in connection with an alleged bribery-for-pardon scheme, The New York Times reported. As Business Insider reported, a US judge released documents this week showing that federal investigators were concerned about an alleged "bribery conspiracy scheme" to obtain a presidential pardon. According to The Times' reporting, the suspected scheme involved a billionaire real estate developer, Sanford Diller, who sought to secure clemency for a man named Hugh Baras, who had been convicted of tax evasion.
President-elect Joe Biden said when it comes to the Department of Justice, he is "not going to be telling them what they have to do and don't have to do." Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris were interviewed by CNN's Jake Tapper on Thursday, and the discussion turned to reports that President Trump is contemplating preemptively pardoning his adult children, son-in-law Jared Kushner, and personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani. Biden said this "concerns me in terms of what kind of precedent it sets and how the rest of the world looks [at] us as a nation of laws and justice."
Philippine police on Friday threatened to cane people who violate social distancing protocols as the Southeast Asian nation fights the spread of the coronavirus during the festive season. The Philippines celebrates one of the world's longest Christmas seasons, starting as early as September, and crowds have started to flock to sprawling malls and shopping centres despite the pandemic. Police general Cesar Binag, commander of the coronavirus task force, told a news conference that police and soldiers would patrol in public areas in the capital Manila, the hotspot of COVID-19 cases, carrying 1 meter rattan sticks to measure distancing.
The Israeli government on Thursday urged its citizens to avoid travel to the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, citing threats of Iranian attacks. Iran has been threatening to attack Israeli targets since its chief nuclear scientist, Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, was assassinated last Friday near Tehran. It accuses Israel, which has been suspected in previous killings of Iranian nuclear scientists, of being behind the shooting.
In a lengthy video posted to his Facebook page, President Trump offered more baseless allegations of voter fraud. Trump said his remarks, which ran some 46 minutes, “may be the most important speech I've ever made.
Top U.S. infectious diseases expert Anthony Fauci apologized on Thursday for casting doubt on the rigor of the British regulators who approved the Pfizer Inc vaccine against COVID-19, saying he had faith in the quality of their work. Britain announced the approval of the vaccine on Wednesday, with the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) saying it had rigorously assessed the vaccine data and had cut no corners. It gave the UK the jump in the race to begin mass inoculation against a virus that has killed nearly 1.5 million people globally and hammered the world economy.
Two years after Adolf Hitler took power in Germany, the Nazis achieved one of their cultural goals: the return of the Guelph Treasure, a collection of medieval Christian relics. Under pressure from Hitler's deputy Hermann Goering, a consortium of Jewish art dealers agreed to sell the collection to the Prussian State Museum. On June 14, 1935, Saemy Rosenberg signed the sale documents in Berlin on behalf of his partners, receiving about one-third of what they had paid for the items in 1929.
In a new set of unsubstantiated allegations of voter fraud, Roger Stone, a longtime friend and a former adviser to President Donald Trump on Thursday said that North Korea interfered in the US presidential elections. Appearing on far-right radio programme The Alex Jones Show, Mr Stones claimed that there was “incontrovertible evidence” that the votes were brought into the US through Maine. "I just learned of absolute incontrovertible evidence of North Korean boats delivering ballots through a harbour in Maine, the state of Maine," he said.
Authorities in Bangladesh have begun relocating thousands of Rohingya refugees to a remote island despite concerns about safety and consent. About 1,600 refugees were being transported on Friday towards Bhasan Char, a flood-prone island in the Bay of Bengal, Reuters reported. Bangladesh says all those being moved have given consent.
Lebanon's Hezbollah said Friday it is suing a former Christian lawmaker and a website affiliated with a Christian political party for defamation, after they accused the Shiite militant group of being responsible for the devastating explosion at Beirut's port this summer. Hezbollah's legal representative Ibrahim Mussawi said the accusations, leveled by Fares Souaid and the website of the right-wing Lebanese Forces party, were misleading. Mussawi, also a Hezbollah lawmaker, told a press conference outside the courts house that blaming the group threatens to disrupt social peace in Lebanon, at a time when the United States is exerting maximum pressure on his party and its allies.
A game of "cat-and-mouse" between the European Union and Turkey needs to come to an end, European Council President Charles Michel said on Friday, in reference to a dispute over natural gas resources in the eastern Mediterranean. "The game of cat and mouse must end," Michel told a news conference, as Turkey again withdrew an exploration vessel from disputed waters ahead of an EU summit on Dec. 10 that is set to discuss possible sanctions on Turkey. "In October, we defined a positive agenda, we reached out our hand," said Michel, who chairs EU summits.
What in the world does Donald Trump think he's doing? The deranged 46-minute Facebook video in which the recently defeated president of the United States rants and raves like Alex Jones, spinning vast conspiracies about how the election was stolen from him and his supporters, is a good example. It's President-elect Joe Biden picking people to staff his administration, office holders of both parties discussing prospects for confirming specific nominees, and Biden's team talking about priorities for the opening days and weeks of his presidency.
Record-high Covid infections and hospitalisations have been reported in the US, with fears they will not slow in the run-up to Christmas. The number of people in hospital passed 100,000 for the first time, a figure that has doubled since November. New cases rose by a record 195,695 on Wednesday, and the daily death toll of 2,733 was close to a new high.
Dozens of militants aligned with the Islamic State group opened fire on a Philippine army detachment and burned a police patrol car in a southern town but withdrew after troops returned fire, officials said Friday. There were no immediate reports of injuries in Thursday night's brief attack by the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters in Datu Piang town. Nevertheless it sparked panic among residents and rekindled fears of a repeat of a 2017 militant siege of southern Marawi city that lasted for five months before being quelled by government forces.
Two coronavirus vaccine candidates developed by China's Clover Biopharmaceuticals triggered strong immune responses in an early-stage human trial and appeared to be safe, the company said on Friday. The vaccine candidates, one containing an adjuvant from GlaxoSmithKline and the other from Dynavax, induced strong immune responses including neutralizing antibodies and cell-mediated immunity in a Phase 1 clinical trial, Clover said. Adjuvants are ingredients that can boost immune responses.
President Donald Trump falsely labeled Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation of him a “witch hunt.” If you want to see what a real political witch hunt looks like, just look to lame duck Attorney General slash personal fixer Bill Barr's appointment this week of a special counsel meant to probe Joe Biden's administration before it even begins. While Barr's order appointing Connecticut U.S. Attorney John Durham as special counsel is focused on any crimes connected to the opening of the FBI's investigation into Donald Trump's 2016 campaign, you're kidding yourself if you think it necessarily stops here.
A Supreme Court judge in Australia's Victoria state on Friday dismissed submissions from news media organizations and journalists that there is no case to answer on charges they breached a gag order on reporting about Cardinal George Pell's sex abuse convictions in 2018. More charges were tossed out in the case against Australian media outlets prosecuted over reporting of Pell's abuse convictions. But the judge refused to throw out the bulk of the 87 charges of contempt of court for stories published after the cardinal's guilty verdict.
Election officials are investigating the actions of a Florida lawyer who they say tried to register to vote in a high-stakes runoff in Georgia that will decide control of the U.S. Senate. Moving to Georgia just to vote — with no intention of staying in the state afterward — can amount to a felony, Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger said in a statement Thursday announcing the investigation. The lawyer went online and attempted to register to vote using the address of his brother in Hiram, Georgia, said Deidre Holden, the elections supervisor in Paulding County, Georgia.
Turkey's President Tayyip Erdogan said on Friday he hoped France would soon get rid of President Emmanuel Macron, describing him as a burden on France which was going through dangerous times. Ties between Turkey and France, both NATO members, have been particularly tense in recent months over policy differences on Syria and the publishing of caricatures about Prophet Mohammad in France. "Macron is a burden on France.
What the testing data reveals is that in both Bihar and Uttar Pradesh (and some other states) less than 50% of total tests use the PCR method - so cases are being missed. In Maharashtra, nearly 60% of tests have been PCR tests (although they are increasingly using rapid testing in the state capital, Mumbai. And Tamil Nadu state has relied totally on PCR testing, which means it is likely to have a far more accurate idea of the spread of the virus.
A Chinese spacecraft lifted off from the moon Thursday night with a load of lunar rocks, the first stage of its return to Earth, the government space agency reported. Chang'e 5, the third Chinese spacecraft to land on the moon and the first to take off from it again, is the latest in a series of increasingly ambitious missions for Beijing's space program, which also has a orbiter and rover headed to Mars. Its mission: collect about 2 kilograms (4 pounds) of lunar rocks and bring them back to Earth, the first return of samples since Soviet spacecraft did so in the 1970s.
Here's what's happening Thursday in Election 2020 and President-elect Joe Biden's transition. TODAY'S TOP STORIES: HEALTH CARE PICKS: Up soon for President-elect Joe Biden: naming his top health care officials as the coronavirus pandemic rages. It's hard to imagine more consequential picks.
“This metastasizing debt crisis has had tremendous social costs. An entire generation has been set back.”
“It is not the government’s job to step in and rescue those who took on more debt than their future incomes would support.”
“Many student-borrowers need relief, but well-off borrowers who are thriving — thanks to their college degrees — do not.”
“It will stimulate the lagging economy. And though not everyone will directly benefit, the country as a whole will improve.”
“Canceling student debt would cost billions of dollars each year and would exacerbate, not lessen, economic inequalities.”