Reuters US Domestic News Summary

Following is a summary of current US domestic news briefs.

Joe Biden seeks reboot after fresh stumble in New Hampshire

Joe Biden's campaign held a victory party in a New Hampshire hotel ballroom on Tuesday evening. But there was no victory. And there was no Joe Biden. Before the polls had even closed, the Democratic presidential hopeful had left New Hampshire, where he ultimately posted a fifth-place finish. The dismal performance came just eight days after the Iowa caucuses, where Biden finished fourth.

Fake flyers and face-mask fear: California fights coronavirus discrimination

A flyer in Los Angeles' Carson area, with a fake seal of the World Health Organization, tells residents to avoid Asian-American businesses like Panda Express because of a coronavirus outbreak. A Los Angeles middle schooler is beaten and hospitalized after students say he is as an Asian-American with coronavirus. And over 14,000 people sign a petition urging schools in the Alhambra area to close over coronavirus risks, even though there is only one case of the virus in Los Angeles County, with its population of 10.1 million.

U.S. reports 15th coronavirus case; White House bashes China's response

U.S. health officials reported a 15th confirmed case of coronavirus in the United States on Thursday as the White House criticized China's response to the outbreak, saying Beijing lacked transparency. A patient who was among the Americans evacuated from the Chinese city of Wuhan - the epicenter of the outbreak - and placed under quarantine at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas, became the latest U.S. case, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said.

Census says switching software for U.S. population count

The U.S. Census Bureau confirmed on Thursday it is shelving the online response software it bought from Pegasystems Inc for this year’s population count in favor of an in-house alternative the bureau believes can handle more traffic. The switch, which comes just weeks before the decennial survey goes live, has reignited concerns among IT experts about both the cost and security of what is intended to be America’s first online census.

Nine U.S. lawmakers who were once on food stamps ask Trump not to shrink program

A handful of U.S. lawmakers have a unique argument for asking President Donald Trump not to slash the food stamp program - they themselves once relied on it. The Republican president this week proposed $15 billion in cuts to the $71 billion Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), commonly called food stamps, as part of his $4.8 trillion budget plan.

U.S. House votes to revive decades-old women's rights amendment

The U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday voted to revive a decades-old effort to enshrine equal rights for women in the U.S. Constitution, setting up an election-year confrontation that faces long odds of success. By a vote of 232 to 183, the Democratic-controlled House voted to remove a long-past deadline for ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment, which was first proposed in 1923. The vote fell largely along party lines.

Oklahoma to resume lethal injections after plan to use gas for executions stalls

Oklahoma intends to resume executions of condemned inmates using lethal injections after suspending capital punishment in 2015 following a series of botched executions, state officials said on Thursday. The state had been developing a new execution protocol in which it would instead asphyxiate inmates using nitrogen gas, a plan Attorney General Mike Hunter unveiled in 2018.

Weinstein's lawyer assails accusers' credibility in New York rape trial closing argument

A lawyer for Harvey Weinstein on Thursday took aim at the credibility of the women accusing the former movie producer of sexual assault and urged jurors in the closing arguments of his New York trial to acquit him. Weinstein, 67, has pleaded not guilty to sexually assaulting former production assistant Mimi Haleyi in 2006 and raping Jessica Mann, a onetime aspiring actress, in 2013.

Trump administration taking $3.8 billion more from military for Mexico border wall

The U.S. Defense Department sent Congress a request to shift nearly $4 billion from the military budget to pay for a wall on the border with Mexico, a central promise of President Donald Trump's campaign for the White House four years ago and bid this year for a second term. Lawmakers said they received a request on Thursday to reprogram more than $3.8 billion from funding for the National Guard and weapons programs, setting the stage for a possible confrontation with Democrats.

Trump, Republican committee raised more than $60 million during January impeachment trial: campaign

U.S. President Donald Trump's re-election campaign and his Republican Party raised more than $60 million in January, against the backdrop of impeachment that threatened Trump's presidency. The Democratic-led House of Representatives impeached Trump on Dec. 18, making him only the third president in history to have that mark on his legacy. But the lower chamber then waited until mid-January to send the articles of impeachment to the Senate for a trial on whether to remove him from office. The Senate acquitted him on Feb. 5.