U.S. Politics

10 things you need to know today: October 9, 2016

Spencer Platt/Getty Images

THE WEEK

1. Candidates prepare to debate Sunday in unprecedented circumstances
Presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump will face off in their second debate Sunday evening, a crucial moment for Trump after 48 hours of intense criticism over a 2005 hot mic recording in which he is heard making graphic sexual remarks. Trump finds himself in unprecedented circumstances, and many question whether any debate performance could save his candidacy. The recording “is a devastating blow to the Trump campaign and to the party, and there is not much either can do to salvage it,” said former Republican National Committee chair Michael Steele, adding, “It almost doesn’t matter what Trump does in the next debate.” Moderated by Anderson Cooper and Martha Raddatz, the debate will include questions from a live audience. It begins at 9 p.m. Eastern time.

Source: The Hill, The New York Times

2. RNC reportedly pulls resources from Trump after lewd tape surfaces
Republican National Committee chief Reince Priebus on Saturdayreportedly told the RNC to redirect resources away from Donald Trump pursuant to his hot mic comments. A number of party heavyweights have denounced Trump’s remarks, including his running mate Mike Pence and House Speaker Paul Ryan, while at least 22 sitting GOP senators and representatives have called on Trump to step down as nominee. Priebus’ directive is apparently an effort to salvage the GOP’s chances in down-ballot races, as party operatives are concerned the backlash facing Trump may jeopardize their odds to retain the Senate as well as the House. Earlier Saturday, Politico reported the RNC halted its mail production for the pro-Trump “Victory” program, presumably in order to redirect resources elsewhere.

Source: The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post

3. Trump says ‘zero chance’ he’ll quit the race
Republican Donald Trump told the Wall Street Journal Saturday there is “zero chance” he’ll quit the presidential race despite furor over his crude comments because he will “never give up” and the “support [he’s] getting is unbelievable.” He reiterated that determination to The Washington Post later that day, claiming, “People are calling and saying, ‘Don’t even think about doing anything else but running.” Then, he tweeted, “The media and establishment want me out of the race so badly – I WILL NEVER DROP OUT OF THE RACE, WILL NEVER LET MY SUPPORTERS DOWN!”

Source: Politico, Twitter

4. Poll: 7 in 10 GOP voters say stick with Trump
A Politico poll conducted Saturday, one day after the news broke of sexually graphic comments Republican Donald Trump made about women in 2005, shows a strong majority of GOP voters disagree with leaders in their party who want Trump to drop out. Some 74 percent of Republican voters told pollsters Trump should stay in, while just 12 percent said he should step aside. Among GOP women specifically, support for Trump’s exit was only one point higher, at 13 percent. Party strategists believe it will take several more days before the tape, which eight in 10 voters heard about in the first 24 hours of its release, has a substantial effect at the grassroots level.

Source: Politico

5. More lewd Trump tapes emerge from Howard Stern Show, maybe The Apprentice
The graphic audio clip of Donald Trump released Friday is not the only recording of the GOP nominee speaking in sexually explicit terms. Archival audio from Trump’s many appearances as a guest of shock jock Howard Stern hear the candidate discussing, among other topics, his daughter Ivanka’s body, whether to have sex with women during their menstrual cycles, and threesomes. In one exchange about Ivanka, Stern asks Trump if he can call his daughter “a piece of ass,” and Trump gives his approval. Meanwhile, on Saturday afternoon, Bill Pruitt, formerly of Trump’s Apprentice reality show, tweeted, “As a producer on seasons 1 & 2 of #theapprentice I assure you: when it comes to the #trumptapes there are far worse.” The tapes are owned by another producer who can choose whether or not to release them.

Source: CNN, The Hill

6. Matthew downgraded to post-tropical cyclone with ‘record-breaking’ flooding
The storm lashing the East Coast after a deadly trip through the Caribbean was downgraded from a hurricane to a post-tropical cycloneSunday as its maximum wind speed slowed to 75 mph. Matthew has reached North Carolina and Virginia, where it has caused ‘record-breaking’ floods and widespread power outages now affecting about 2 million homes and businesses. Matthew has killed 11 people in the United States and took nearly 900 lives in Haiti. The storm will continue to weaken over the course of the day Sunday.

Source: CNN, Reuters

7. U.S.-backed Saudi airstrikes kill at least 140 at Yemeni funeral service
Bombs dropped by Saudi Arabia-led coalition aircraft on a funeral in Yemen Saturday killed more than 140 people and injured as many as 525 more, a United Nations official said. Witnesses described black smoke rising from the strike sites and overloaded medical workers dealing with serious wounds and burns. “The place has been turned into a lake of blood,” said one rescue worker. Though the White House condemned this strike, the Saudi coalition is backed by the United States and has been accused of war crimes for the brutality of its war in Yemen.

Source: Associated Press, CNN

8. Dozens injured by Long Island train derailment
A Long Island Rail Road passenger train went off its tracks Saturdaynight, leaving at least 29 people with injuries, none of them life-threatening. Three cars on the 12-car commuter train derailed and caught fire near New Hyde Park after striking a work train, said a railroad representative. The busy line has been forced to suspend service in both directions. Two weeks ago, more than 100 people were injured and one person killed when another train crashed in nearby Hoboken, New Jersey.

Source: Reuters, USA Today

9. Suspect caught in fatal attack on two Palm Springs police officers
Police in Palm Springs, California, arrested early Sunday morning the suspect, John Felix, in a fatal shooting of two police officers that took place Saturday night. The attack occurred while the officers, Jose Gilbert Vega and Lesley Zereby, were out on a domestic disturbance call. “It was a simple family disturbance and he elected to open fire on a few of the guardians of the city,” said Palm Springs Police Chief Bryan Reyes. “Today Palm Springs lost two brave officers … I am awake in a nightmare right now.” A third officer also sustained a less serious injury.

Source: Fox News, CNN

10. Germany hunts bomb suspect after confiscating explosives
Police in the German city of Chemnitz are hunting a 22-year-old Syrian man named Jaber al-Bakr after confiscating explosive materials from his apartment Saturday. The suspect is believed to have been planning a bomb attack and several other people who may be connected to the plot have already been detained by law enforcement. It is not yet known how long al-Bakr has been in Germany or whether he is currently armed. As of Sunday morning, he remains at large.

Source: Associated Press, The Week

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