Nobel Peace Prize winner announced and bedbug infestation fears: Morning Rundown

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Senators warn Republicans that a more conservative speaker won’t make their dreams come true. New Jersey state investigators revisit the fatal 2018 crash involving Sen. Bob Menendez’s wife. And Chicago Bears legend Dick Butkus dies at the age of 80. 

Here's what to know today.

A reality check for Republicans as the House considers a new speaker

When a new House speaker takes over, they will inherit the same divided government that took down Kevin McCarthy. And electing a more right-leaning leader won't be enough to muscle conservative legislation through a Senate and White House run by liberal Democrats, senators in both parties warn.

Kevin McCarthy spent nine months as a speaker constantly struggling to balance the demands of an aggressive right flank while dealing with the Senate and President Joe Biden. A new speaker will have to navigate divisions over aid to Ukraine and advance must-pass bills to keep agencies functioning, all while fears grow about how to prevent a shutdown on Nov. 17.

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“To keep the government funded or do anything consequential around here, they’re going to have to get Democrats. So that’s the dilemma they have,” Senate Minority Whip John Thune, R-S.D., said of House Republicans. “And as they select a speaker, I think they’re going to have to think through that.”

Sen. Sherrod Brow, D-Ohio, quipped: If “the lesson here is you move further to the right to get things done, that makes no sense … Who comes up with stuff like that? I don’t understand the logic of any of that.”

Here’s what others had to say.

So far, Reps. Jim Jordan and Steve Scalise have announced bids for speaker. Neither has the votes to win at this stage, and Republicans are beginning to choose sides. Last night, former President Donald Trump endorsed Jordan in a post on Truth Social.

Biden administration takes 2 big steps on illegal immigration

The U.S. is resuming direct repatriation flights for Venezuelans who unlawfully cross the border and “do not establish a legal basis to remain” in the country, the Biden administrationannounced yesterday. A senior administration official said deportations of people in federal custody who arrived after July will happen “in the coming days.”

Also this week, the administration announced it waived 26 federal laws to permit more border wall construction in South Texas. Not only does the move build on one of the most controversial cornerstones of the Trump administration — it also marks a major reversal for President Joe Biden, who vowed that not “another foot of wall” would be constructed during his presidency.

Both decisions follow increased criticism from Democratic politicians, who have called on Biden to take action on the border. For years, calls to do more to control the flow of undocumented immigrants into the country have been an unrelenting GOP rallying cry. But not anymore. There are several reasons that’s changing.

Dick Butkus, among the NFL’s greatest linebackers, dies at 80

Dick Butkus, a former Chicago Bear and Pro Football Hall of Famer, died at the age of 80 according to a statement from the Bears. His family said he died peacefully in his sleep in Malibu.

Butkus was a graduate of the University of Illinois, where he led the team to a 1964 Rose Bowl victory. In 1965, Butkus was drafted by the Bears in the first round and played nine seasons with the team, until his retirement in 1973. He said that being inducted into the Hall of Fame was “the top of my dream” and that he had a new goal: “simply to be a better husband and a better father and a better person.” Look back at Butkus’ life and career.

Researchers find evidence of a ‘long cold’ syndrome

It’s not just long Covid. A new study shows the coronavirus isn’t the only pathogen that can cause symptoms that last for months, or even years, after an initial infection is overcome. Researchers analyzed data from thousands of U.K. adults and found evidence of a “long cold” syndrome that can follow infections with a variety of common respiratory illnesses, including cold viruses and influenza. The study gives way to more questions: What leads to lingering symptoms? Is there a viral culprit?

Scientists note that long Covid research presents a unique opportunity for understanding other long-lasting symptoms.

Jailed Iranian activist Narges Mohammadi wins Nobel Peace Prize

The Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to imprisoned Iranian women's rights campaigner Narges Mohammadi on Oct. 6, 2023. (AFP - Getty Images)
The Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to imprisoned Iranian women's rights campaigner Narges Mohammadi on Oct. 6, 2023. (AFP - Getty Images)

Jailed Iranian human rights activist Narges Mohammadi won the Nobel Peace Prize for her fight against women’s oppression in Iran and advocating for human rights. Berit Reiss-Andersen, head of the Norwegian Nobel Committee, said in a news conference in Oslo that “her brave struggle has come with tremendous personal cost.”

Despite being behind bars, Mohammadi rallied immense support for the women-led protests against the government that rocked Iran last year. The protests were initially triggered by the death of the 22-year-old Kurdish woman Mahsa Amini, who died in the hospital after being detained by the country’s morality police. This week the hospitalization of a 16-year-old girl after an incident on public transport has fueled new outrage at the morality police.

New Jersey officials review the fatal crash involving Sen. Menendez’s wife

A day after police records revealed that Sen. Bob Menendez’s then-girlfriend, and now wife, was involved in a fatal car crash in 2018, investigators from the New Jersey Attorney General’s public integrity office have begun reviewing how local authorities handled the crash when it happened. In December 2018, Nadine Arslanian, now Nadine Menendez, was behind the wheel of a car that killed pedestrian Richard Koop. While it’s still unknown what information state officials are looking at, Koop’s family has been critical in the past of how the crime scene was handled, as well as Nadine Menendez’s actions immediately following the crash.

The crash is apparently linked to the current bribery charges against the senator and his wife. A few months after the crash, they allegedly received a new Mercedes to replace the one damaged in the collision.

Black students and graduates on the burden of paying back loans

Their college experiences were upended by the pandemic. Now with the pause on student loan repayments lifted, millions of students must begin making payments. For Black students, the burden can be higher, with graduates holding an average of $25,000 more in student loan debt than their white counterparts, according to data. Black graduates also owe an average of 188% more than white students borrowed.

Reporter Claretta Bellamy spoke to students who say they lost out on study abroad opportunities, social experiences and more but are burdened with thousands of dollars of debt. “Am I ready? No, like, absolutely not,” one person said. “But, the debt exists and it has to be paid.”

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Today’s Talker: There’s no need to lose sleep over bedbugs infiltrating…

… the U.S. Worries that travelers may bring home critters seemed to permeate social media as influencers talked about infestations in Paris during Fashion Week. But exterminators say they aren’t concerned for one obvious reason: Bedbugs are already here, and, frankly, they’re “everywhere.”

Politics in Brief

Trump investigations: Former President Donald Trump unexpectedly dismissed a $500 million lawsuit against his former lawyer Michael Cohen but vowed to revisit the suit at a later date. Also, Trump wants a New York judge to dismiss the hush money case against him, arguing in a new court filing that prosecutors waited too long to bring their case. And his attorneys argued that he should be shielded from prosecution in the 2020 election interference case because his alleged efforts to overturn the election were part of his “official duties.”

New Hampshire primary: Democrats in the state have until the end of the day to change their voter registrations ahead of the 2024 primary as a PAC urges them to get involved in the fight against Donald Trump.

Unpaid taxes: Former Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani owes more than half a million dollars in federal taxes and faces a lien on a property he owns in Florida, according to a recent court filing.

Staff Pick: Teen drama and ‘ultimate betrayal’

A young Illinois couple’s relationship was full of drama — and then the 15-year-old girl vanished. It was years before officials had any answers in the case, and it took a best friend willing to wear a wire for the FBI to land a conviction. Reporter Tim Stelloh partners with the team at “Dateline” for a deeper look at the case. — Jamie Knodel, news editor

In Case You Missed It

  • A U.S. fighter jet shot down a Turkish drone after it flew near American troops operating in northeast Syria, two U.S. defense officials said.

  • The criminal cyberattack on MGM Resorts in Las Vegas last month resulted in the company losing around $100 million.

  • Russian President Vladimir Putin hinted that the death of Wagner group leader Yevgeny Prigozhin in a plane crash wasn’t an act of sabotage — but rather the end result of drug- or alcohol-fueled play with grenades.

  • Louisiana officials said efforts to slow the push of salt water upstream in the Mississippi River are helping buy time before drinking water supplies in and around New Orleans could be contaminated.

  • A woman was fired from her job after she was seen in a viral video telling a group of Germans to “get the f— out of our country.”

  • A lawsuit filed against Jason Derulo alleges the pop star displayed aggressive behavior, made unwanted invitations and expected sex from a hopeful singer after he signed her to his record label.

Select: Online Shopping, Simplified

It may not always feel like it, but your cat heavily relies on you — especially when it comes to their regular meals. And it turns out cats have very specific dietary needs. So how should you go about choosing the best cat food, and what ingredients should you avoid? Our Select team got the scoop from veterinarians.

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