Trump concludes West Coast swing with Las Vegas rally
President Donald Trump will conclude his West Coast trip Friday with a rally for the third consecutive day, this one set in Las Vegas on the eve of Nevada's presidential caucuses. Trump delivered a mostly standard stump speech in Colorado Springs, Colo., Thursday with a couple of differences. In addition to attacking Democratic presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg, Trump went after the Oscars, questioning why the Academy gave its Best Picture award to "Parasite," a South Korean film. Before that, Trump tried to steal the spotlight Wednesday with a rally in Phoenix at the same time Democrats were debating in Las Vegas. Amidst all of Trump's travels are new reports that election intelligence officials warned lawmakers that Russia was interfering in the 2020 campaign with a goal of getting Trump re-elected. A recent briefing led to Trump reprimanding Acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire and accusing him of being disloyal, before replacing him.
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Funeral set for slain SC girl Faye Marie Swetlik
A memorial service will be held Friday for 6-year-old Faye Marie Swetlik, who was found dead last week near her home in Cayce, South Carolina. The funeral will be at 7 p.m. at Trinity Baptist Church in Cayce, according to an obituary shared by Caughman-Harman Funeral Home in Lexington. The girl's body was found Feb. 13, three days after she was abducted from her yard. Shortly afterward, police found the body of a neighbor, Coty Scott Taylor, 30, at his home. An autopsy revealed Taylor died by suicide, and police said Tuesday they believe Taylor is the "sole perpetrator of this crime."
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Iranian voters head to polls to elect a new parliament
Iranians began voting for a new parliament Friday, with turnout seen as a key measure of support for Iran's leadership as sanctions weigh on the economy and isolate the country diplomatically. Iran's leadership, including Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, and state media urged voter participation, with some framing it as a religious duty. Iranians have dealt with various types of economic hardship since President Donald Trump withdrew the U.S. from Iran's nuclear agreement with world powers and imposed sanctions. President Hassan Rouhani said earlier this week that Iran would be willing to negotiate if the Trump administration returned to the deal and dropped the sanctions.
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NFL CBA negotiations punted to the players' association
Another round of meetings has begun as the NFL's owners voted to approve terms of the latest proposal to discuss the state of collective bargaining agreement negotiations. The NFL Players Association, its executive committee members and the 32 player reps are scheduled to hold a conference call on Friday and consider whether to hold a vote on the terms the owners approved. Sources tell USA TODAY Sports the owners have a strong sense of optimism that a deal will soon be reached, whereas the players' side is more guarded. Changes we can expect to see include an expanded postseason with 14 teams - up from 12, a 17-game regular season, a shorter preseason and the players' portion of the revenue pie jumping by roughly 1.5% which will, eventually, translate to an increase of around $5 billion more for players. However, some sticking points to reach an agreement still remain, particularly from the players' side.
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'Call of the Wild': Harrison Ford is the real deal, but the dogs aren't
Harrison Ford and a (digital) dog named Buck star in Disney's fresh take on the classic 1903 Jack London novel "The Call of the Wild" (★★ out of four; rated PG; in theaters nationwide Friday). Buck is a St. Bernard/Scotch Collie mix who gets stolen from his comfortable California home during the 1890s Yukon Gold Rush. He meets up first with a sled-dog delivery team, then with kind outdoorsman John Thornton (Ford). The movie relies completely on digitally-generated depictions of the dogs, which at times look a little fake, writes USA TODAY's Brian Truitt: "The narrative ... leans into the theme of dogs as man's best friend and at the same time is a great reminder that there’s nothing like the real thing."
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Contributing: The Associated Press
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Trump's Vegas rally, slain SC girl's funeral: 5 things to know Friday