President Donald Trump is flexing his veto and pardon powers. USA TODAY has found mishandled investigations of sexual misconduct in cheerleading. And after another unarmed Black man was shot by police in Ohio Tuesday, a governor speaks out: "The community is exhausted."
It's Ashley with the news to know.
But first, lions and tigers and zombie minks, oh my: Lions and penguins roamed free. Mink appeared to rise from graves. Spotted lanternflies prompted quarantines. Let's recap how weird nature was this year.
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Trump vetoes National Defense bill, but Congress has votes to override
President Donald Trump vetoed the National Defense Authorization Act on Wednesday, a $741 billion national security package that would raise troops' pay, direct the purchase of weapons and set military policies because it does not include provisions that he wanted, like stripping social media companies (like Facebook and Twitter) from protections against being sued by anyone claiming to be harmed by a post. This was a surprise to no one: Trump had tweeted his intention to veto multiple times. What's next? Well, the move is unlikely to stop the NDAA from being enacted, as it's expected to retain veto-proof support.
So, um, how about that COVID-19 relief bill?
Congress has passed a COVID-19 relief bill that would provide a second round of stimulus checks to millions of Americans as soon as next week – but on Tuesday, Trump denounced the package, calling it a "disgrace" and urging congressional leaders to make several changes to the bill including increasing direct payments for Americans. However, the president did stop short of saying he would veto the bipartisan legislation. And so, we continue to watch and wait.
What everyone’s talking about
Deadliest week: The U.S. for the first time reported more than 19,000 dead of COVID-19 in a seven-day period.
2020 is turning into the wildfire season that just won't end. More winds threaten power outages in Southern California.
James Harden says he wasn't at a strip club in a video circulating of him that has led to speculation.
President-elect Joe Biden introduced his nominee to lead the Education Department, Miguel Cardona.
Hilaria Baldwin has made it clear that she won't stand for body shaming.
Is Jennifer Lopez getting cold feet? JLo says her canceled wedding made her question marrying Alex Rodriguez.
People have *opinions* about Trump’s pardons
Like many of his predecessors, Trump is using his final days in the White House to increase his use of pardons and commutations, including some that may prove controversial. Here’s the thing: Trump’s pardons have sparked a ton of controversy, but have been the fewest in more than 100 years. That being said, they’ve also included service members charged with murder and an adviser accused of lying to the FBI. So do with that information what you may. To date, Trump has announced 65 acts of clemency. He issued 15 pardons and five commutations on Tuesday, including a full pardon to George Papadopoulos, a former campaign aide, and lawyer Alex van der Zwaan, both of whom admitted lying to the FBI in the Robert Mueller investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election.
Cheerleading’s governing body has mishandled sexual misconduct
Frustrations are growing over the cheerleading industry’s mishandling of sexual misconduct cases. A USA TODAY investigation found that USASF, the national governing body of competitive cheerleading, has an inherently flawed process for investigating complaints — one with critical gaps that have repeatedly allowed adults accused or even convicted of sexual misconduct to remain around children. USA TODAY found multiple examples in which complaints stalled as the USASF paused its process for law enforcement to investigate, taking no steps to warn the cheer community or public.
Cheerleading has a list of people banned from the sport. It was missing 74 convicted sex offenders.
Best of 2020: Life & Entertainment
USA TODAY editors came together to select the best stories of 2020. (Trust us, it wasn't easy.) Every day until we ring in 2021, I'll be rounding up some of the year's most powerful stories:
Best books of 2020: These 13 titles scored perfect 4-star reviews from USA TODAY's critics.
Hollywood's casting dilemma: Should straight, cisgender actors play LGBTQ characters?
Hard seltzer, once believed a fad, is showing no signs of fizzling.
Top moments in 2020 music: Garth Brooks breaks Facebook Live, Taylor Swift's surprises, Billie Eilish at the Grammys.
"Decolonize your bookshelf": Little libraries, book boxes promote conversation about race in America.
Columbus officer who fatally shot Black man has history of misconduct
An Ohio police officer shot and killed an unarmed Black man while responding to a non-emergency call Tuesday in Columbus, and hours later, a furious Mayor Andrew J. Ginther called for the officer's badge and gun. "The community is exhausted," Ginther said. The officer who fired his weapon, Adam Coy, has a history of complaints and issues with excessive force. According to previous reporting, nine complaints were filed against Coy in 2003. The officers involved in the incident did not turn on their body cameras until immediately after the shooting, but it was recorded because the camera captures 60 seconds of footage before it is turned on. The shooting comes less than three weeks after a deputy in Columbus shot Casey Goodson Jr., a 23-year-old Black man, prompting protests and demands for justice.
Prospective jurors in the George Floyd trial are being asked about their views on Black Lives Matter, policing and criminal justice.
A break from the news
🎁 Hit that subscribe: 35 awesome gift subscription boxes and services for every type of person.
📺 "Wonder Woman 1984" from home or "News of the World" in theaters? We have your guide on what to stream and see this holiday.
🌕 The Great Conjunction: 7 awe-inspiring photos show Jupiter and Saturn as a "double planet."
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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Trump vetoes National Defense bill but hasn't vetoed relief package — yet: Wednesday's news