Reuters US Domestic News Summary

Following is a summary of current US domestic news briefs.

Trump administration eases risks for banks on false lending claims

The Trump administration said on Monday it would try to entice banks to offer more mortgages to low-income borrowers by reducing reliance on a Civil War-era law the Obama administration used in the wake of the subprime mortgage crisis to build bad-lending cases against big banks. The U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and Justice Departments announced they had struck an agreement wherein HUD would handle most enforcement of any violations of the 1863 False Claims Act, which the Justice Department had used to extract billions of dollars from banks.

Maryland newspaper mass shooting suspect pleads guilty to 5 deaths: Washington Post

The man charged in a 2018 mass shooting at the Capital Gazette newspaper in Maryland that killed five people admitted his guilt, the Washington Post reported on Monday. Jarrod Ramos, 39, entered his guilty plea in Anne Arundel County Circuit Court, the newspaper said. The plea was not immediately available in electronic court records and Ramos' attorneys could not immediately be reached. Ramos is charged with opening fire with a shotgun in the Capital Gazette newsroom in Annapolis on June 28, 2018, killing four journalists and a sales assistant in an attack police said was motivated by a long-standing grudge.

Trump rips Chicago as more dangerous than Afghanistan

U.S. President Donald Trump came not to praise Chicago but to condemn it - and did he ever. In remarks to a meeting of the International Association of Chiefs of Police, Trump said Chicago with its high rate of murders compared unfavorably with Afghanistan, where the United States has been at war since an invasion triggered by the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

Murder trial begins in Colorado missing woman's case

Jury selection started on Monday in the murder trial of a Colorado man accused of beating to death his fiancée with a baseball bat and burning the young mother’s body, which has never been found. Patrick Frazee, 33, has pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder and solicitation to commit murder stemming from the disappearance and presumed killing of Kelsey Berreth last November in Woodland Park, Colorado, about 90 miles southwest of Denver.

Missouri, Planned Parenthood debate 'safety concerns' at abortion clinic hearing

The fate of Missouri's only abortion clinic was at stake on Monday, as a state arbiter heard arguments from Planned Parenthood and state officials who have threatened to close it and make Missouri the sole U.S. state without legal abortion services. Planned Parenthood, the women's healthcare and abortion provider that operates the facility, sued the state health department in June for its refusal to renew the St. Louis clinic's license. The state court judge presiding over the case referred the matter to the Administrative Hearing Commission, an independent arbiter.

Firefighters get brief respite from winds fanning California wildfires

Fierce winds fanning Californian wildfires are expected to abate on Monday, giving firefighters a chance to corral blazes that have scorched swaths of the picturesque wine country in the north and neighborhoods near Los Angeles in the south. But forecasters with the National Weather Service (NWS) said high winds would return later in the week and could be the strongest so far this year in the south of the state.

U.S. House to debate bill on next steps in Trump impeachment probe

The U.S. House of Representatives this week will debate legislation establishing procedures for the next phase of the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said on Monday. In a letter to her fellow Democrats, Pelosi said the measure would lay the groundwork for public hearings, which Republicans have been clamoring for, along with ways to set "due process" for Trump and his lawyers. It also will outline steps for various investigating committees to forward evidence they have collected to the House Judiciary Committee, which potentially could draft articles of impeachment.

Former Boston College student charged in boyfriend's suicide

A grand jury in Massachusetts has indicted a former Boston College student in the suicide of her boyfriend, whom prosecutors said she verbally, physically and psychologically abused right up to his death. South Korean national Inyoung You, 21, was charged with involuntary manslaughter in the death of fellow Boston College student Alexander Urtula, 22, the Suffolk County District Attorney's office said in a statement on Monday.

U.S. regulator to bar China's Huawei and ZTE from government subsidy program

The U.S. telecommunications regulator plans to vote in November to designate China's Huawei Technologies and ZTE Corp as national security risks, barring their U.S. rural carrier customers from tapping an $8.5 billion government fund to purchase equipment or services. The Federal Communications Commission also plans to propose requiring those carriers to remove and replace equipment from such designated companies, FCC officials said on Monday.

Senior House Republican Walden will not seek re-election

U.S. Representative Greg Walden, the top Republican on the House Energy and Commerce Committee, said on Monday he will not seek re-election in November 2020, the latest Republican to announce his retirement. Walden, 62, who previously chaired the committee and oversaw many legislative efforts, said in a statement released by his office that he believes he would have been re-elected if he had run. Walden, who is from Oregon, has been in Congress since 1999 and is deputy chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee.