Reuters US Domestic News Summary

Following is a summary of current US domestic news briefs.

African Americans underserved by U.S. banks: study

Many African Americans have difficulty accumulating savings in part because they lack access to mainstream financial services like banking, a new study on the contributing factors to the U.S. racial wealth gap by McKinsey & Co found on Tuesday. Many minorities in the United States depend on more expensive financial services like check-cashing counters since there are fewer banks in non-white neighborhoods. Increasing access to basic banking services, like checking and savings accounts, could save individual black Americans up to $40,000 over their lifetime, the report found.

LA Opera to investigate sexual misconduct accusations against Placido Domingo

The Los Angeles Opera said on Tuesday it will investigate accusations of sexual misconduct against Spanish tenor Placido Domingo, as two organizations canceled planned appearances by him. The Los Angeles Opera, where Domingo is general director, was responding to accusations made by eight singers, a dancer and others in the classical music world in a report by the Associated Press.

As New York legal window opens, child sex abuse victims sue Catholic Church, others

Scores of people in New York state who were sexually abused as children sued institutions, including the Roman Catholic Church, on Wednesday, the first day a new law temporarily enabled them to file lawsuits over decades-old crimes. By the close of business of Wednesday, 427 such lawsuits had been filed in courts across the state, according to a courts system spokesman. The vast majority of them were against the Church and its various dioceses in the state, as claimants accused priests of sexually abusing them as children and Church leaders of covering up the priests' crimes, according to state court records.

U.S. drivers cover fewer miles in June than year earlier: DOT

Motorists traveled 0.3% fewer miles on U.S. roads and highways in June compared with a year earlier, the U.S. Department of Transportation said in a monthly report Wednesday. Drivers logged an estimated 279.7 billion vehicle miles in the month. Miles have risen 0.8% in all of 2019 compared with a year earlier.

Mexico pushes U.S. to designate El Paso shooting an act of terrorism

Mexico's government on Wednesday amplified its assertion that the Aug. 3 mass shooting in El Paso, Texas, was an act of terrorism against Mexicans, urging the United States to ensure the attack was designated as such. Speaking after meetings on Tuesday between U.S. and Mexican officials about the incident, Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard told a regular government news conference that steps needed to be taken to prevent future killings.

Six Philadelphia police officers reported shot in drug raid

Six Philadelphia police officers were shot on Wednesday in a drug raid on a home, and at least one shooter continued to fire on officers barricaded inside, according to police and local media. Philadelphia Police said the officers did not have life-threatening injuries.

Presidential contender Kamala Harris proposes ways to combat domestic terrorism

Democratic presidential contender Kamala Harris on Wednesday released a plan to address what she termed domestic terrorism after three recent mass shootings in a week that resulted in the deaths of 34 people. Harris, a U.S. senator from California, said that communities across the United States such as Gilroy, California, El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, where the recent shootings occurred, have been "traumatized by domestic terrorism and gun violence."

U.S. scientist to file whistleblower complaint after agency halts his climate work

A climate scientist for the Trump administration's health protection agency who was ordered by his agency to drop work on climate issues will file a whistleblower complaint this week with the U.S. Office of Special Counsel, his lawyers said on Wednesday. George Luber, who ran the climate and health program at the Centers for Disease Control, is an expert on the health impacts of climate change including risks to hospitals and public health infrastructure and of diseases borne by mosquitoes and ticks as they increasingly move into northern regions as temperatures rise.

Republican congressman Steve King: Would humanity exist without rape, incest?

Republican U.S. Representative Steve King wondered aloud on Wednesday whether the human race would still exist without rape and incest, setting off calls by Republicans and Democrats alike for him to step down, just months after he was condemned for remarks widely regarded as racist. King made his remarks as he explained his anti-abortion position at a breakfast event in his home state of Iowa, the Des Moines Register reported.

Jeffrey Epstein accuser sues financier's estate as prison officials investigate suicide

A New York woman who said she was sexually abused by Jeffrey Epstein at the age of 14 sued the disgraced financier's estate and a former associate on Wednesday, as officials began a review of how Epstein died in an apparent suicide in his jail cell. In the first of an expected wave of civil lawsuits, Jennifer Araoz, 32, said she had just entered high school in 2001 when an Epstein associate brought her to the financier's mansion on Manhattan's Upper East Side, beginning a grooming process that led to months of sexual abuse including a "brutal rape."