SUPREME COURT-KAVANAUGH-THE LATEST
The Latest: DOJ: It’s not the FBI’s job to judge allegations
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Justice Department says the sexual assault allegation against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh “does not involve any potential federal crime” for the FBI to investigate.
The department said in a statement Monday night that the FBI’s role during background investigations is to evaluate whether the nominee could pose a national security risk and then provide that information “for the use of the decision makers.”
The department says it’s not the job of the FBI to judge the significance or the credibility of an accusation.
In the case of Kavanaugh, the FBI received a letter Sept. 12 with allegations of misconduct in the 1980s, when both Kavanaugh and his accuser were teenagers.
The Justice Department says the FBI forwarded the letter to the White House counsel’s office.
TRUMP-RUSSIA PROBE-CONGRESS-THE LATEST
The Latest: Analysts reviewing docs Trump wants declassified
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Justice Department says it’s working with the director of national intelligence to comply with President Donald Trump’s order declassifying a trove of documents in the Russia investigation.
In a statement Monday night, a department spokesperson says an order like the one Trump gave earlier in the day triggers a declassification review by various agencies “to ensure the safety of America’s national security interests.”
That review is now ongoing.
Trump on Monday declassified a trove of documents related to the early days of the FBI’s Russia investigation, including portions of a secret surveillance warrant and former FBI Director James Comey’s text messages.
TROPICAL WEATHER-THE LATEST
The Latest: More N Carolina counties qualify for federal aid
WILMINGTON, N.C. (AP) — More North Carolina counties have qualified for federal disaster aid for their homeowners, renters and businesses reeling from Hurricane Florence damage.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency announced late Monday that 10 additional counties have been designated for individual assistance, bringing the total to 18 counties damaged by the storm overall as qualifying for such assistance.
Residents and businesses that have damage should file insurance claims first before applying for government assistance. The aid could include grants or low-interest loans.
The new counties designated Monday are Bladen, Columbus, Cumberland, Duplin, Harnett, Lenoir, Jones, Robeson, Sampson and Wayne counties.
Designating the 18 counties also means the federal government can reimburse state and local governments for debris removal and other emergency actions.
The Latest: ‘Game of Thrones’ wins Emmy for best drama
LOS ANGELES (AP) — “Game of Thrones” has won the best television drama series Emmy Award.
The HBO fantasy series won after a one-year hiatus in the category and was the leading nominee going into Monday’s ceremony. Peter Dinklage also won the Emmy for best supporting actor in a drama series Monday night.
It beat out other drama series “The Americans,” ”The Crown,” ”The Handmaid’s Tale,” ”Stranger Things,” ”This Is Us” and “Westworld.”
TRADE-CHINA TARIFFS-THE LATEST
The Latest: Business groups blast tariffs on China imports
WASHINGTON (AP) — Several business groups swiftly have condemned President Donald Trump’s plans to impose tariffs on another $200 billion in Chinese imports.
U.S. Chamber of Commerce President Thomas Donohue said, “The U.S. economy runs on pro-growth policies, but that’s not what tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods deliver.”
The Retail Industry Leaders Association called the tariffs a tax on American families. In a statement the group said, “Consumers — not China — will bear the brunt of these tariffs.”
Likewise, the National Association of Manufacturers said the tariffs risk offsetting the benefits of last year’s tax cuts and urged the administration to resume negotiations with China. The association’s president, Jay Timmons, said in a statement that, “Now is the time for talks — not just tariffs.”
Latest: SpaceX moon passenger to invite artists on journey
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Japanese billionaire Yusaku Maezawa says he will invite six to eight artists, architects, designers and other creative people on a weeklong journey to circumnavigate the moon.
Maezawa said Monday that the SpaceX BFR rocket will make the trip in 2023.
The 42-year-old entrepreneur says he wants his guests to be inspired to create once they return to Earth.
He appeared at an event Monday at SpaceX headquarters near Los Angeles.
SpaceX founder Elon Musk says the BFR is still in development. The reusable 118-meter (387-foot) rocket will have its own dedicated passenger ship.
SHAVING ON THE TRAIN
Man caught shaving on train in viral video says don’t judge
NEW YORK (AP) — A man who drew online mockery after he was filmed shaving at his seat on a New Jersey Transit train said he was just trying to clean up after days spent in a homeless shelter.
Anthony Torres tells The Associated Press that the people judging him on social media don’t know the struggle he’s been through in his life.
He says he was heading back to family in New Jersey after spending a week at a shelter in New York City and didn’t want to show up looking scruffy, so out came the razor and shaving cream.
A fellow commuter on the Thursday evening train took video of Torres, showing him steadily swiping away at his lathered face and tossing the shaving cream from the razor onto the floor.
US slashes number of refugees to 30,000 for next year
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump administration is cutting the number of refugees allowed into the United States next year to 30,000.
The announcement comes despite calls from global humanitarian groups that this year’s cap of 45,000 was too low.
The 30,000 ceiling announced Monday by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is the maximum the U.S. will admit during the fiscal year that starts Oct. 1. The actual number allowed could be lower. The U.S. welcomed nearly 85,000 refugees in the final year of the Obama administration.
The lower admittance numbers reflect the Trump administration’s opposition to accepting refugees and other immigrants into the U.S. That approach has already driven down refugee admissions to their lowest level in a decade.
The Latest: Moon and Kim arrive at guesthouse for luncheon
PYONGYANG, North Korea (AP) — North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and South Korean President Moon Jae-in have arrived at a guesthouse in Pyongyang where they are expected to have talks over lunch.
Kim and Moon arrived at the Paekhwawon State Guesthouse in a black Mercedes convertible and were seen talking and adjusting their hair before stepping out of the backseat.
Their wives also reportedly shared a separate vehicle to the guesthouse.
The Paekwawon Guesthouse was also where former South Korean Presidents Kim Dae-jung and Roh Moo-hyun stayed during their summits with Kim’s father in 2000 and 2007.
BORDER AGENT ARRESTED-WOMEN KILLED-THE LATEST
The Latest: Border Patrol agent targeted vulnerable women
LAREDO, Texas (AP) — A Texas prosecutor says a Border Patrol agent targeted a vulnerable community when he killed four women.
Webb County District Attorney Isidro Alaniz spoke Monday about the allegations against 35-year-old Juan David Ortiz. He’s accused of fatally shooting four women and injuring a fifth who escaped.
Alaniz says Ortiz sought out a “community of people” who were vulnerable “whether it be because of alcohol, substance abuse, drug addiction or prostitution.”
Alaniz noted that all of the victims were shot in the head with a handgun and taken to desolate areas around Laredo. Alaniz says Ortiz “executed” the victims in a “cold and callous way.”
Alaniz said that investigators are still trying to determine a motive for the killings.
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