10 things you need to know today: August 24, 2016

FILIPPO MONTEFORTE/AFP/Getty Images

THE WEEK

1. Powerful earthquake devastates Italian mountain towns
A 6.2 magnitude earthquake hit central Italy on Wednesday, killing at least 37 people. The quake struck at a shallow depth of just over six miles, magnifying its impact. The worst damage was reported in the town of Accumoli near the epicenter and about 65 miles northeast of Rome, and in the nearby mountain towns of Amatrice and Arquata del Tronto, which were left largely in ruins. “The town is no more,” Amatrice Mayor Sergio Pirozzi said. “I have an appeal to make: We have access roads to the town cut off and people under the rubble, help us.”

Source: BBC News, CNN

2. Obama promises help on visit to flooded Baton Rouge neighborhoods
President Obama toured flood-ravaged neighborhoods in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, on Tuesday, pledging to provide federal aid needed to help clean up and rebuild. “What I want the people of Louisiana to know is that you’re not alone in this, even after the TV cameras leave,” Obama said. He brushed off criticism from Republicans, including presidential nominee Donald Trump, that he should have cut short his summer vacation to visit last week, saying his focus has been on getting Louisiana the federal resources it needs. “This is not a photo-op issue,” he said.

Source: USA Today, The Wall Street Journal

3. Turkey deploys tanks against ISIS in Syrian border town
Turkey sent tanks and special forces across the border into Syria earlyWednesday in a push to drive Islamic State fighters out of the Syrian border town of Jarablus. The offensive, backed by U.S. warplanes and special forces advisers, marked Turkey’s most significant involvement yet in Syria’s civil war, now in its sixth year. Turkish warplanes and artillery hammered ISIS targets in THE area, one of the Islamist group’s last strongholds along the border, before the ground forces went in. Turkey also hopes to stop Syrian Kurdish rebels from extending their self-proclaimed autonomous Kurdish region.

Source: The Associated Press

4. North Korea launches missile toward Japan
North Korea on Wednesday launched a ballistic missile from a submarine, the South Korean military said. The missile reportedly came down at sea in Japan’s air defense identification zone. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe called the test “an impermissible and outrageous act that represents a grave threat to the security of Japan.” The incident came two days after South Korea and the U.S. started annual joint military maneuvers that the North condemned as a step toward invasion.

Source: Reuters, The Associated Press

5. FBI investigates hacking attempt against New York Times
The Federal Bureau of Investigation and U.S. security agencies are investigating cyberattacks that targeted reporters at The New York Timesand other news organizations, federal officials said Tuesday. The hackers are believed to have been working for Russian intelligence as part of a broad series of security breaches that also targeted Democratic Party accounts. The Times said hackers targeted is Moscow bureau but there were no indications that they managed to breach the system’s security.

Source: CNN, Reuters

6. Clinton surges to 12-point lead over Trump in new poll
Hillary Clinton extended her lead over Donald Trump to 12 percentage points in a national Reuters/Ipsos poll released Tuesday. Clinton, the Democratic presidential nominee, was backed by 45 percent of likely voters polled. Thirty-three percent supported Trump, the GOP nominee, while 22 percent said they would not vote for either of them. In a four-way race, Clinton had 41 percent, Trump had 33 percent, Libertarian nominee Gary Johnson had 7 percent, and Green Party nominee Jill Stein had 2 percent. In early August, Clinton’s lead over Trump in the same poll ranged from 3 to 9 percentage points.

Source: Reuters

7. Trump open to ‘softening’ his immigration proposals
Donald Trump confirmed Tuesday that he was open to “softening” his position on illegal immigration. The Republican presidential nominee vowed in the primaries to deport all 11 million of the undocumented immigrants estimated to be in the U.S. Trump has been losing ground in polls, and he has launched a push to win over minority voters to broaden his appeal. In a town hall meeting, Fox News’ Sean Hannity asked Trump whether he was open to making exceptions for some immigrants, as his new campaign chief has suggested. “There certainly can be a softening,” Trump said, “because we’re not looking to hurt people.”

Source: Politico

8. Labor board rules working graduate students are university employees
The National Labor Relations Board ruled Tuesday that private-university graduate students who teach and serve as research assistants qualify as school employees. The 3-to-1 decision gives them the right to join or form unions, overturning a 2004 Brown University ruling in which the board said giving grad students union rights ran counter to the purposes of graduate education, because students in many programs have to teach and participate in research projects to earn their degrees. Universities argued that changing working students’ status would shift their relationships with their schools, changing it from educational to economic.

Source: The Washington Post

9. EpiPen maker faces backlash over soaring prices
Criticism is mounting against drug maker Mylan over massive price increases for its EpiPen injectors, which are used to quickly treat severe allergic reactions. The average wholesale price of EpiPens has increased by nearly 500 percent since 2009. The steady, steep increase has been thrust into the spotlight this week as parents are stocking up on EpiPens as they send their kids back to school and are being hit with high deductibles, prompting public criticism of the company by members of Congress, doctors, and consumers.

Source: USA Today, The Washington Post

10. Clinton gets fundraising windfall from Hollywood
Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel hosted a star-studded fundraiser for Hillary Clinton at their Hollywood Hills home on Tuesday, helping the Democratic presidential nominee raise $3.36 million, based on attendance figures and ticket prices reported by the campaign. The $33,400 per person luncheon added to a Clinton fundraising blitz in California that has brought in $11 million so far. Clinton had her best month so far in July, raising $52.3 million, compared to Republican rival Donald Trump’s haul of $36.7 million, also his best month to date.

Source: CNN, Variety

 

Did Colin Powell Advise Clinton To Use A Private Email?

Did Colin Powell Advise Clinton To Use A Private Email?

REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst/File Photo

THE NATIONAL MEMO

By Joe Conason

Did Colin Powell suggest that Hillary Clinton should use her private email account as secretary of state—as he had admittedly done in that same job several years earlier?

Last week, The New York Times confirmed that Powell did offer her precisely that advice, based on an account in my forthcoming book on Bill Clinton’s post-presidency. Yet Powell has responded by insisting that he has “no recollection” of such an incident.

In Man of the World: The Further Endeavors of Bill Clinton, to be published in September by Simon & Schuster, I report on a dinner party that former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright hosted for Hillary Clinton several months after she assumed that office in 2009, with Powell in attendance:

Toward the end of the evening, over dessert, Albright asked all of the former secretaries to offer one salient bit of counsel [to Clinton]…. Powell suggested that she use her own email, as he had done, except for classified communications, which he had sent and received via a State Department computer on his desk. Saying that his use of personal email had been transformative for the department, Powell thus confirmed a decision she had made months earlier.

Following up on my book, which the Times received in advance of publication, reporter Amy Chozick discovered that Clinton had mentioned her conversation with Powell—as well as an email exchange with him on the same matter—when the FBI interviewed the Democratic presidential nominee during its probe of her private email use at the State Department.

Powell’s office then released a statement saying he “has no recollection of the dinner conversation,” which he has since repeated to other news outlets. While hardly a denial, his response seems designed to cast doubt on the story.

Over the weekend, he told a reporter for the New York Post’s Page Six, “Her people have been trying to pin it on me,” with evident annoyance. “The truth is she was using [her personal email] for a year before I sent her a memo telling her what I did,” he said.

But last June, while reporting on Powell’s advice to Clinton for my book, I contacted his office for comment—and got a very different answer.

His principal assistant, Margaret “Peggy” Cifrino, informed me then via email that their calendar showed that the Albright dinner had occurred in June 2009. While he didn’t recall some details of the dinner because it had occurred seven years ago, according to Cifrino, he remembered what he did and didn’t say to Clinton on the topic in question that evening:

He does recall sharing with Secretary Clinton his use of his email account and how useful it was and transformative for the Department. He knew nothing then or until recently about her private home server and a personal domain, nor, therefore, could he have advised her on that or suggested it. By June I would assume her email system was already set up.

So it is perplexing for him to say he doesn’t remember that dinner conversation at all now, since, according to his own assistant, he remembered at least some of what he said as recently as two months ago.

Yet in another sense, it is hardly surprising that Powell would prefer not to be drawn into the center of the continuing controversy over Clinton’s emails, a position he has carefully avoided so far.

After all, not only did Powell use a private account to communicate with his State Department subordinates and others, like Clinton—but unlike her, he failed to provide any of those email records to the National Archives, which requested all of the former secretaries of state to turn over electronic records related to their government service.

Moreover, several indignant Clinton critics have drawn a distinction between her use of private email accounts and his, noting that she used a server located at her Chappaqua home, while he used America Online—suggesting that what Powell did was somehow more virtuous, circumspect or secure.

But as Powell knows all too well, the Romanian hacker known as “Guccifer,” whose real name is Marcel Lehel Lazar, easily invaded his highly vulnerable AOL account and stole messages that he later posted on the Internet. When the Justice Department prosecuted Lazar, Powell was one of the “victims” included in the indictment.

Contrary to claims made by Lazar and others, however, there is no proof that Clinton’s email was ever successfully hacked. (In fact, Guccifer eventually confessed that he had lied about accessing her account.)

Powell’s complaint that Clinton is trying to “pin” her email use on him also seems misplaced. Although several sources told me about Powell’s 2009 conversation with her, Clinton was not among them.

She didn’t mention Powell when I interviewed her for my book in 2013, and during the past seven years she has never spoken publicly about his advice, which she considered private. Although she told FBI agents about it earlier this year, she had every reason to expect that interview would remain confidential.

To “blame” Powell could not have exculpated her in any case—and she has taken responsibility for her own decision, which she has described more than once as a mistake that she is sorry for making.

Finally, although Clinton provided 55,000 pages of emails to the National Archives, Powell has said that all of the email messages he sent as secretary of state are long gone, in apparent violation of his responsibility to preserve them under the Federal Records Act.

That is too bad for historians and everyone else who would like to know more about Powell’s conduct during the prelude to the invasion of Iraq—among many other controversial events during his tenure.

Right-Wing Radio Host Gets Owned By Neil deGrasse Tyson For Lying About Him

Right-Wing Radio Host Gets Owned By Neil deGrasse Tyson For Lying About Him

Featured image via screen capture

ADDICTING INFO

Note to conservatives who want to pretend to be journalists: be sure that where you get your information is not a satirical site, or you’ll be humiliated like this idiot.

This is especially true if you decide to attack a professional scientist, because if you haven’t done your research properly you can rest assured they will discover that fact when they research your claims.

In this case, that’s exactly what popular scientist Neil deGrasse Tyson did to right-wing radio host Neal Larson this week after the conservative mouthpiece repeated the charge that Tyson “mocked” a little girl for wanting to live on Jupiter, a planet where no human could survive.

The alleged “mocking” supposedly took place in front of a crowd and on Twitter, Larson crowed in the vicious hit job on Tyson and his character in an op-ed criticizing Tyson for simply inserting math into the Olympic medal count. The scientist pointed out that while America earned more medals than Hungary, Hungary is actually beating us when we adjust to account for total population. Then the victory for medals to population ratio goes to Hungary.

Larson believes this is Tyson attacking America when in reality he was only stating a mathematical fact that also happenes to be interesting.

Larson went on to whine about Tyson because he constantly calls out conservatives for getting science wrong. He also attempted to assassinate Tyson’s character by using the following tale as an example.

“I’ve listened to Neil deGrasse Tyson before. And what I observe is a smart guy who consistently enjoys asserting his intellectual supremacy over others more than he actually likes educating. In one of his worse moments, Tyson mocked a 12-year-old girl who suggested she’d like to live on Jupiter. He ridiculed her in the midst of a crowd, then later, several times, on Twitter. That told me everything I needed to know about Neil deGrasse Tyson.

For that moment he was just a horse’s astrophysicist.”

The only problem is that the story never actually happened, and Tyson schooled Larson for it.

“The ‘incident’ with a 9yr old girl never happened,” Tyson responded.

And he’s right. As it turns out, the story relayed by Larson is complete satire.

“It looks to be a hoax,” Tyson continued. “No such tweets ever existed on November 29th, 2015, or on any other day. So you abrogated your journalistic integrity by not verifying what you read in somebody else’s article, before using it as a foundational pillar in yours.”

In short, Larson just got lit up by Tyson and those pesky things called facts that conservatives are allergic to for some reason.

Stephen D Foster Jr

Watch the climate debate devolve into nonsense in the 10 years since An Inconvenient Truth

VOX   

The Republican presidential nominee, Donald Trump, says climate change is a “scam.” He plans to roll back Environmental Protection Agency regulations on fossil fuels and pull the US out of the international Paris agreement on emissions reductions. The 2016 Republican party platform mentions climate change only to dismiss it.

So it’s become really easy to forget that the Republican Party wasn’t always compelled to reject scientific evidence on climate change.

In 2008, the Republican presidential candidate actually campaigned on a promise to fight global climate change. The party platform that year said:

The same human economic activity that has brought freedom and opportunity to billions has also increased the amount of carbon in the atmosphere. While the scope and long-term consequences of this are the subject of ongoing scientific research, common sense dictates that the United States should take measured and reasonable steps today to reduce any impact on the environment. Those steps, if consistent with our global competitiveness will also be good for our national security, our energy independence, and our economy.

In addition to John McCain, Republicans like Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, Rudy Giuliani, Mike Huckabee, and even Sarah Palin agreed that taking action to mitigate climate change was a conservative thing to do. When business leaders published a letter in 2009 explicitly calling for climate legislation, guess who signed it.

So what happened? How did it become politically risky for Republicans to talk about the challenges climate change will pose to global health and security? How did they go from listening to experts to accusing them of conspiracies? And how can they now paint themselves (and the whole country) out of this corner?

Watch the video above to see how the climate debate in the US devolved into fully polarized gridlock.

by Joss Fong and Joe Posner

Federal Court Slashes ‘Golden Week’ Of Early Voting In Ohio

THINK PROGRESS

The 6th Circuit Court of Appeals issued a crushing ruling on Tuesday for Ohio’s Democratic Party, which has been fighting to restore early voting days in the crucial swing state ahead of this November’s election.

A federal district court ordered the state in May to restore the early voting days eliminated over the last few years by the Republican-controlled legislature, calling the cuts “unconstitutional” and “unenforceable.” Tuesday’s 2–1 appellate court ruling overturns that decision, and will allow Ohio to cut what is known as “Golden Week” — the time when residents can register and vote on the same day.

The two judges on the panel who ruled for Ohio’s early voting cuts — both George W. Bush appointees — said they did so because courts should give deference to states in deciding how to run their elections instead of being “micromanagers.” They argued that even without Golden Week, Ohio’s early voting policy is “really quite generous,” and said the cuts pose “no such infringement” on the “fundamental right to vote.”

Judge Jane Branstetter Stranch dissented, calling her colleagues’ fears of micromanaging “unfounded and antiquated.” Stranch, who was appointed by President Obama, said that voting is such a basic right that it deserves extra attention from the courts. The early voting cut, she argued, “imposes a disproportionate burden on African Americans” and is “linked to social and historical conditions of discrimination that diminish the ability of African Americans to participate in the political process.”

Stranch referenced the ample evidence presented to the lower court thatGolden Week is disproportionately used by the state’s African American voters, and its elimination “results in less opportunity for African Americans to participate in the political process than other voters.” Tens of thousands of people voted during “Golden Week” in 2012 alone, more than enough to sway an election in the tightly contested swing state.

The District Court judge said Ohio’s cuts “will likely result in longer lines at the polls, thereby increasing the burdens for those who must wait in those lines and deterring voting.” Voting lines multiple hours long has been a particular problem in recent Ohio elections, and the cuts to early voting could worsen the situation.

The Ohio Democratic Party can ask the full 6th Circuit court to hear the case, or appeal it to the U.S. Supreme Court, but time is running out for the state to create an early voting plan before the general election.

Alice Ollstein

Russian intelligence likely hacked the ‘New York Times,’ CNN reports

Russian intelligence likely hacked the 'New York Times,' CNN reports

Image Credit: Getty Images

TECH.MIC

Reporters are always trying to stay one step ahead the organization they cover, gathering secrets and speaking confidentially to major politicians and political players. So if a malicious hacker wanted access to political secrets and couldn’t get to the source itself, journalists are a ripe target.

The FBI is investigating a series of cybersecurity breaches of the New York Times and other news organizations, CNN reported Tuesday.

According to CNN‘s intelligence sources, the attacks are part of a growing wave of espionage on behalf of the Russian government against groups like reporters and think-tanks in order to gather information about the U.S. political system.

This news comes shortly after the hack on the Democratic National Committee, which exposed DNC officials to so much embarrassment that DNC Chair Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz was forced to resign. Though the FBI hasn’t openly revealed the source of the attack, FBI insiders have credited it to Russian intelligence.

After the DNC hack, Donald Trump called for Russian intelligence to increase its espionage against the United States, apparently hoping that more humiliating disclosures could help him win the election.

“Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing,” Trump said. Right-wing media said Trump was joking, but national security experts didn’t think so.

 

Jack Smith IV

A Comprehensive Guide To Trump Ally Roger Stone, A Racist, Sexist Conspiracy Theorist

MEDIA MATTERS

Stone Has A History Of Dirty Tricks, Violent Rhetoric, Racist Taunts, Sexist Screeds, Fringe Conspiracy Theories, And Discredited Research

Roger Stone is a longtime friend and ally of presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump. Stone has a decades-long history of employing political dirty tricks, and he regularly spouts violent, racist, and sexist rhetoric, including calling Hillary Clinton a “cunt” and advocating her execution. He is a discredited researcher and conspiracy theorist who claims the Clintons and Bushes secretly murdered dozens; the collapse of World Trade Center Building 7 is “suspicious”; President Lyndon Johnson killed President John F. Kennedy; President George H.W. Bush tried to assassinate President Ronald Reagan; and the Clintons killed John F. Kennedy Jr.

Roger Stone is A Longtime Friend And Ally Of Trump

10 things you need to know today: August 23, 2016

Jeff Swensen/Getty Images

THE WEEK

1. State Department to release 14,900 newly discovered Clinton emails
The FBI investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server as secretary of state found 14,900 work-related emails and documents that her lawyers had not previously disclosed, State Department lawyers told a federal judge on Monday. Clinton’s lawyers turned over about 30,000 emails in 2014. The State Department and Judicial Watch, a conservative watchdog that sued for access to Clinton’s emails, are negotiating a plan to release the new materials. Clinton’s campaign says she handed over “all the work-related emails she had in her possession in 2014,” and supports the release of the new material, too, if it is work-related.

Source: The Hill, The Washington Post

2. Judge temporarily blocks Obama transgender bathroom guidelines
A federal judge on Monday temporarily blocked the Obama administration from enforcing national guidelines calling for public schools to let transgender students use restrooms corresponding to their gender identity. U.S. District Court Judge Reed O’Connor in Texas ruled the “status quo” should hold until the case is decided. Thirteen states, led by Texas, have challenged the policy, saying the White House overstepped its authority by “policing public school property.” The Obama administration says it is merely trying to protect transgender students’ rights under existing laws against sex discrimination.

Source: The New York Times, The Texas Tribune

3. Trump says he is not ‘flip-flopping’ on immigration
Donald Trump and top supporters on Monday denied reports that he was “flip-flopping” on his vow to deport millions of undocumented immigrants. His new campaign manager Kellyanne Conway said a day earlier that it was “to be determined” whether Trump would use a deportation force he once proposed. Trump did not get into specifics, but said he was talking with Latino leaders to come up with tough but sensitive immigration policies. “I’m not flip-flopping,” Trump told Fox News. “We want to come up with a really fair, but firm answer.”

Source: Politico

4. Clinton emails show donors got access, but not favors
Government watchdog groups said Monday that Hillary Clinton’s newly released emails indicate that Clinton Foundation donors got access to Clinton and her aides — but not favors — when she was secretary of state. The Democratic presidential nominee’s GOP rival, Donald Trump,on Monday said her family’s foundation was the “most corrupt enterprise in political history.” Clinton’s campaign chair, John Podesta, hit back, saying Trump should “come clean with voters” about his business “ties to the Kremlin.” Clinton’s husband, former President Bill Clinton, said that if she wins the election the foundation will stop taking foreign donations, and he will resign from its board.

Source: USA Today

5. Turkey says it will ‘cleanse’ border area of ISIS fighters
Turkey vowed Monday to “cleanse” its borders of Islamic State militants. The statement came after a weekend suicide bombing at a Kurdish wedding killed at least 54 people. Turkish officials say the terrorist attack appeared to have been the work of ISIS, although no group immediately claimed responsibility. Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said witness accounts indicated that the attacker was a child, although “a clue has not yet been found concerning the perpetrator.”

Source: The New York Times

6. Iran says Russia no longer using its air bases for anti-ISIS strikes
Iran said Monday that Russian warplanes were no longer taking off from its air bases to attack Islamic State targets in Syria. Russia disclosed last week that it had hit ISIS targets on sorties from Iran. Tehran called Moscow’s decision to make the arrangement public “ungentlemanly.” On Monday, Russia’s Defense Ministry said it had “successfully completed all the tasks” it had for its warplanes taking off from Iran. Bahram Zassemi, a Foreign Ministry spokesman in Iran, said Russia’s use of its bases was a “temporary mission, that ended.”

Source: CNN, CBC

7. Virginia governor restores 13,000 felons’ voting rights
Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D) announced Monday that he had approved restoring voting rights for nearly 13,000 felons who had served their time. McAuliffe tried to restore voting rights for 200,000 felons with a sweeping executive order, but the state’s highest court invalidated his executive order in July. Republicans had challenged the order, saying McAuliffe was just trying to add Democrats to voter rolls. McAuliffe said felon disenfranchisement, which hits African-Americans especially hard, is unfair, because it treats people who now work and pay taxes as “inferior second-class citizens.”

Source: The Associated Press

8. Obama heads to flood-ravaged Louisiana
President Obama on Tuesday is visiting neighborhoods in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, that have been devastated by floods that killed at least 13 people and damaged 60,000 homes. Republicans have criticized Obama for not cutting short his Martha’s Vineyard vacation last week to visit the flood zone. White House spokesman Josh Earnest on Mondaydefended Obama’s decision not to go sooner, saying he was more focused on the federal response than “the optics.”

Source: Reuters

9. Sports tribunal upholds ban against Russian athletes in Rio Paralympics
Russia lost its appeal of a ban that will prevent its athletes from competing in next month’s Rio Paralympics, the Court of Arbitration for Sport said Tuesday. The International Paralympic Committee decided on Aug. 7 to exclude Russia’s entire 250-competitor team from the Sept. 7-18 event over the country’s doping scandal, which also resulted in a partial ban on Russian Olympic athletes. The court, the highest tribunal in sports, said the ban was “proportionate in the circumstances.”

Source: Reuters

10. Speedo and other sponsors drop swimmer Ryan Lochte
Swimwear brand Speedo said Monday that it was ending its sponsorship agreement with swimmer Ryan Lochte over a drunken incident at a gas station during the Rio Olympics. Lochte and teammates Gunnar Bentz, Jack Conger, and Jimmy Feigen were caught by security guards after Lochte tore down an advertising poster outside a bathroom, but Lochte later said they had been robbed at gunpoint by men claiming to be police. Speedo announced it would donate $50,000 from Lochte’s endorsement fee to a Brazilian charity for children. Clothier Ralph Lauren and two other companies also dumped Lochte, meaning he has lost all of his major endorsement deals.

Source: Sports Illustrated, USA Today

Trump Staff Under Scrutiny

 

10 things you need to know today: August 22, 2016

Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

THE WEEK

1. Rio wraps up Summer Olympics
The Rio Olympics ended Sunday night with a Closing Ceremony inspired by the South American nation’s famous Carnival. Simone Biles, who won four gold medals and a bronze in gymnastics, carried the U.S. flag in the ceremony. She led a U.S. team that collected 121 medals — the country’s biggest haul in a non-boycotted Olympics since 1904. The rainy, three-hour ceremony marked the official handover of the Olympic flag to Tokyo, which hosts the next Summer Games in 2020. Despite complaints about preparations and the high cost of hosting the Games, the Rio Olympics were widely seen as a success and a welcome distraction from Brazil’s economic and political troubles.

Source: BBC News, The Washington Post

2. Trump aides say his deportation plan is ‘to be determined’
Donald Trump is reconsidering his campaign promise to deport the nation’s 11 million undocumented immigrants, aides said Sunday. The Republican presidential nominee’s new campaign manager, Kellyanne Conway, told CNN that it was “to be determined” whether Trump would call for a deportation force, and Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), who has advised Trump on immigration, said the billionaire businessman is “wrestling” with how to handle deportations. Campaign analysts said the comments suggested that Trump’s newly hired campaign leaders are searching for ways to broaden his appeal as he falls in polls.

Source: Los Angeles Times

3. Iraq hangs 36 for Camp Speicher massacre
Iraq on Sunday hanged 36 men convicted of participating in the massacre of at least 800 and possibly up to 1,700 military recruits at Camp Speicher near Tikrit in 2014. Islamic State fighters killed the mostly Shia recruits after taking over the area surrounding the camp, a former U.S. base. ISIS released photos and videos of the massacre, and mass graves were discovered a year later when Iraqi government forces drove ISIS out of the area. The massacre helped Iraq get Shia militias to join the fight against ISIS.

Source: CNN, BBC News

4. ISIS claims responsibility for 2 suicide bombings in Somalia
Double suicide bombings killed at least 20 people in Somalia on Sunday. The Islamist militant group al Shabaab, which is trying to topple the country’s Western-backed government, claimed responsibility. A spokesman for the group said the attack was carried out with two car bombs. Witnesses in the town of Galkayo in north central Somalia confirmed that two automobiles had exploded at a local government headquarters in the semi-autonomous Puntland region. “There were two huge bombs,” first a truck and then a car, said local resident Halima Ismail, whose brother was injured.

Source: Reuters

5. Wedding bomber who killed 50 in Turkey was a child
Turkish officials are waiting for the results of DNA tests on Monday to determine the identity of the suicide bomber who killed at least 50 people at a wedding in Gaziantep, Turkey, on Saturday. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Sunday that the bomber appeared to have been a child between the ages of 12 and 14. Most of the victims were also children. One official said 22 of those killed were under age 14. Erdogan said the Islamic State was the “likely perpetrator” of the terrorist attack.

Source: BBC News, Reuters

6. Mislabeled pills reportedly found in Prince’s home
Pills discovered at Prince’s Minnesota home after his death were labeled hydrocodone but contained fentanyl, the opioid that killed him, said the Minneapolis Star Tribune, citing a source with knowledge of the investigation. The musician’s autopsy report says he died from an accidental, self-administered overdose of fentanyl, a synthetic opioid 100 times more powerful than morphine. Investigators are not sure how the recording superstar obtained the drug — he didn’t have a prescription — but they are leaning toward the theory that he did not know the pills contained the drug.

Source: Star Tribune

7. Health official warns Zika could spread to Gulf Coast
A top U.S. public health official said Sunday that the mosquito-borne Zika virus could spread across the Gulf Coast. The warning came after five cases were confirmed in the popular tourist destination of Miami Beach following an outbreak in Miami’s Wynwood neighborhood. Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the allergy and infectious diseases unit of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), said that record flooding that has killed 13 people in Louisiana has increased the odds that Zika, which can cause severe birth defects, could spread into the state, as standing water could hamper efforts to control mosquitos that spread the virus.

Source: Reuters

8. Brother of wounded Syrian child in viral video dies
The older brother of bombing survivor Omran Daqneesh, 5, diedSunday from wounds he suffered when their family’s house was bombed in the divided city of Aleppo, Syrian opposition activists said. Omran’s late older brother, Ali, was 10. Video of Omran sitting bloodied and stunned in a bright orange ambulance seat went viral on social media, with more than 3.4 million views since last week. The images have stoked renewed opposition to the Syrian war.

Source: NPR

9. U.S. men’s basketball team wins third straight Olympic gold
The U.S. men’s basketball team beat Serbia 96-66 to win the gold medalat the Rio Olympics on Sunday. It was Team USA’s third straight Olympic title. The U.S. finished strong after scaring fans with three near losses in the preliminary round. Serbia led early in the game, but the U.S. broke loose with the help of a burst by Kevin Durant, who scored 18 points in the second quarter alone. By halftime, the U.S. was up 52-29. The win kept Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski undefeated as he ended his tenure as Olympic coach, with a 24-0 record across three Olympics.

Source: The Week, USA Today

10. Ryan Lochte and 3 teammates to be disciplined, U.S. Olympic chief says
U.S. Olympic Committee CEO Scott Blackmun on Sunday promised disciplinary action against 12-time swimming medalist Ryan Lochte and three teammates over Lochte’s debunked claim that they had been robbed at gunpoint by men posing as police in Rio. “They let down our athletes,” Blackmun said. “They let down Americans. And they really let down our hosts in Rio who did such a wonderful job, and we feel very badly about that.” Lochte apologized, saying he “overexaggerated” the story, which his teammates said they never mischaracterized. Police say the swimmers vandalized a gas station bathroom, and armed security guards made them pay for the damage.

Source: ABC News