Reuters US Domestic News Summary

Following is a summary of current US domestic news briefs.

U.S. charges target alleged Chinese spying at Harvard, Boston institutions

A Harvard University department chair and two Chinese nationals who were researchers at Boston University and a Boston hospital were charged on Tuesday with lying about their alleged links to the Chinese government. The charges are part of an aggressive effort by U.S. authorities to block what they say are Chinese attempts to steal American scientific and technological advances.

Trump administration resolves fentanyl dispute but congressional support needed for broader crackdown

The Trump administration has resolved an internal dispute over how to handle new variants of fentanyl that it believes can beef up the fight against the deadly synthetic painkiller without hindering research to ease the opioid crisis. The administration had hoped the deal, a copy of which was turned over to the House of Representatives and the Senate in the fall and discussed during a congressional hearing on Tuesday, would pave the way for Congress to pass their draft legislation, but so far it has failed to do so.

As vote on witnesses looms, Trump legal team tells impeachment trial: 'Time for this to end'

Amid uncertainty over the key question of whether to call witnesses in President Donald Trump's Senate impeachment trial, Trump's legal team wrapped up its opening arguments on Tuesday with an appeal for a quick acquittal. Saying "it is time for this to end," Trump's lawyers brushed off former national security adviser John Bolton's explosive allegations about Trump's conduct and accused Democrats of trying to interfere with Trump's November re-election bid.

Harvey Weinstein's New York rape trial moves on after explosive testimony

Former Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein's New York rape trial is expected to continue on Tuesday, following explosive testimony from two women who have accused him of sexual assault. Weinstein, 67, has pleaded not guilty to sexually assaulting Mimi Haleyi and Jessica Mann. Haleyi has already testified against him, as has another woman, actress Annabella Sciorra.

Petition to make Bryant the new NBA logo nears 2 million signatures

Nearly 2 million people have signed an online petition to use Kobe Bryant's image as the new logo for the National Basketball Association following the death of the Los Angeles Lakers great on Sunday. Bryant, one of the NBA's all-time greatest players, and his 13-year-old daughter were among nine people who died on Sunday when the helicopter they were in crashed into a hillside outside the town of Calabasas, California.

Kobe Bryant's high school coach lost his 'hero,' LeBron James 'devastated'

Kobe Bryant's high school basketball coach said he lost a hero when the former NBA superstar was killed in a helicopter crash, one of the tributes that continued to pour in on Tuesday while investigators sifted through the wreckage looking for clues. Bryant, 41, his 13-year-old daughter and seven other people died in a helicopter crash in hilly terrain during foggy weather near Los Angeles on Sunday. His death sent shockwaves through the sports and entertainment world.

Biden's final Iowa drive sweeps through rival territory

When U.S. presidential candidate Joe Biden went to an Iowa university to campaign this week, one thing was in short supply: students who support him. "What's an old guy like you going to do to get the young people to come out and vote," a person at a University of Northern Iowa (UNI) town hall asked Biden on Monday, noting "there's not very many here."

White House tells airlines it may suspend China-U.S. flights amid coronavirus outbreak: CNBC

The White House has told airline executives that it is considering suspending flights from China to the United States amid the new coronavirus outbreak, CNBC reported on Tuesday, citing people familiar with the matter.

As Trump touts gains in jobs, some Democrats push for economic overhaul

Republican Donald Trump is touting tax cuts and economic gains during his presidency as a reason why he should get re-elected in November. Democrats seeking to challenge him say Trump's economy has benefited the rich while leaving behind the working class. Their proposals range from a sweeping pledge of universal healthcare to comparatively modest tax breaks for the poor.

'Kind of pointless': In battleground Michigan, impeachment takes back seat to everyday issues

Ask Victor Burch about the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump, and he will rattle off a string of issues of more pressing concern to him, starting with making a living as a barber in this northwestern suburb of Detroit. "You've got elderly who need help. You've got veterans who need help. You've got poor people who need help. Impeachment doesn't really help a person who is struggling," said Burch, 40, who took up cutting hair after he lost his job at a plastics factory in the 2007-2009 financial crisis.