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You turn to Democracy Now! for ad-free news you can trust. Maybe you come for our daily headlines, or for in-depth stories that expose government and corporate abuses of power. We produce our daily news hour at a fraction of the budget of a commercial news operation, all without ads, government funding or corporate underwriting? This is only possible with your support. Right now every donation to Democracy Now! will be doubled by a generous supporter. This means if you give $25 today, Democracy Now! will get $50 to support our daily news hour. Please do your part. It takes just a couple of minutes to make sure that Democracy Now! is there for you and everybody else in the coming year. Thanks so much. -Amy Goodman
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Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s campaign is facing increasing turmoil as House Speaker Paul Ryan told fellow Republican lawmakers Monday he would no longer campaign for Trump following the release of a 2005 videotape showing Trump boasting about sexually assaulting women.
Donald Trump: “I’ve got to use some Tic Tacs just in case I start kissing her. You know, I’m automatically attracted to beautiful—I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait. And when you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything.”
Billy Bush: “Whatever you want.”
Donald Trump: “Grab ’em by the pussy. You can do anything.”
That was Donald Trump, speaking with TV host Billy Bush in the 2005 video recorded by NBC’s “Access Hollywood” as the two prepared to meet a star of the soap opera “Days of Our Lives.” The video has caused widespread outrage and further fracturing of the Republican Party. On Monday, Ryan did not fully unendorse Trump, but he did tell Republicans he would no longer campaign for him. Ryan’s spokeswoman also said, “The speaker is going to spend the next month focused entirely on protecting our congressional majorities.” In response, some Republican lawmakers lashed out at Ryan, saying he shouldn’t concede the presidency to Hillary Clinton. One Republican lawmaker, Arizona Congressmember Trent Franks, slammed Ryan, saying he can’t support Clinton over her pro-choice stance on abortion, claiming a Clinton presidency would result in the destruction of fetuses “limb from limb.”
The turmoil within the Republican Party comes as another round of newly leaked emails show how Hillary Clinton’s campaign struggled to deal with Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders’s popularity during the primary season. The emails, released by WikiLeaks, appear to come from the account of Clinton campaign chairperson John Podesta. In one email, an adviser wrote to Podesta, “Message needs to be more positive, upbeat, hopeful. … Bernie is saying we can change the world. Her msg is ‘No, we can’t’ because …” The aide also recommended Clinton’s campaign feature more young people in her campaign ads. Another email also shows Clinton aide Doug Band calling Clinton’s daughter, Chelsea, a “spoiled brat.” This is the second batch of Clinton campaign emails released by WikiLeaks in the last four days.
In more news from the campaign trail, the Trump Taj Mahal casino hotel in Atlantic City officially shut down Monday—leaving 3,000 workers without jobs. Taj Mahal workers have been on strike since July 1, demanding reinstatement of health, pension and other benefits eliminated during 2014 bankruptcy proceedings. Donald Trump opened the Taj Mahal 26 years ago, but it now belongs to Trump’s friend and fellow billionaire, Carl Icahn.
Haitian interim President Jocelerme Privert is warning the country faces a possible famine from what he described as the “apocalyptic destruction” of Hurricane Matthew. The death toll from the hurricane has topped 1,000 as the country battles a growing cholera outbreak and authorities dig mass graves for those killed by the Category 4 storm. The storm hit a week ago, but many areas have still received no aid. Food and medicine have run out. We’ll have more on Haiti after headlines.
Meanwhile, the death toll in the United States from Hurricane Matthew has risen to at least 30 people, as floodwaters continue to rise. North Carolina is struggling with historic flooding, while in Georgia more than 100,000 people are still without electricity.
In news on Yemen, documents obtained by Reuters show the U.S. government is concerned it could be implicated in potential war crimes in Yemen because of its support for a Saudi-led coalition air campaign. The Obama administration has continued to authorize weapons sales to Saudi Arabia despite warnings last year from government lawyers that it might be considered a co-belligerent under international law. This comes as residents of Sana’a are mourning airstrikes on a funeral hall on Saturday that killed at least 140 mourners and wounded more than 500 others, making it the single deadliest attack during the ongoing U.S.-backed, Saudi-led war in Yemen. This is one the mourners.
Yahya Mohammed Saree: “This act is completely void of humanitarian norms and is unprecedented and considered one of the most serious crimes to date.”
Meanwhile, the U.S. military has said one of its missile destroyers was targeted Sunday in a failed missile attack from Houthi-controlled territory in Yemen. We’ll have more on Yemen later in the broadcast.
In Afghanistan, a suicide car bomb has killed at least 14 people in Lashkar Gah, the capital of Helmand province. Local officials say at least 10 of the victims were Afghan police officers. This comes as the Taliban has announced a new offensive to retake control of the provincial capital. In August, 100 U.S. soldiers were deployed to Lashkar Gah to fight the Taliban in what was believed to be the first deployment of U.S. troops to the city since 2014.
The prime minister of Ethiopia has declared a six-month state of emergency amid massive protests by the Oromo people, which has been met by a bloody government crackdown. The protests began last year over resistance to the government’s plan to lease a forest to private developers, and have since grown into a nationwide campaign against human rights abuses. As many as 500 people have been killed in the government’s crackdown, and tens of thousands have been detained. On Sunday, Ethiopia’s prime minister declared a state of emergency.
On Monday, protests and actions were held across the country to mark Indigenous Peoples’ Day and to oppose further construction of fossil fuel infrastructure. In North Dakota, hundreds of Native Americans and their allies gathered to resist the construction of the $3.8 billion Dakota Access pipeline, which has faced months of resistance from the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and members of hundreds of other tribes from across the U.S., Canada and Latin America. At least 27 people were arrested blockading construction at two separate worksites, including Hollywood actress Shailene Woodley.
Police Officer: “Right now you’re being placed under arrest for criminal trespassing, all right?”
Shailene Woodley: “It’s because I have 40,000 people watching. So everybody knows we were going to our vehicle, which they had all surrounded and waiting for me with giant guns and the giant truck behind them, just so they could arrest me, so they knew this would happen. I hope you’re watching, mainstream media.”
This comes as the battle over the construction of the Dakota Access pipeline continues to play out both on the ground and between various government agencies. Red Warrior Camp says the Morton County Sheriff’s Department has called in 400 sheriffs deputies from outside North Dakota to police the ongoing resistance. Meanwhile, Sunday’s ruling by a D.C. appeals court permits the Dakota Access pipeline company to resume construction on a 40-mile stretch of private land spanning the Missouri River. However, on Monday, three federal agencies—the Justice Department, the Army and the Interior Department—issued a second joint statement, stating: “The Army will not authorize constructing the Dakota Access Pipeline on Corps land bordering or under Lake Oahe. We repeat our request that the pipeline company voluntarily pause all construction activity within 20 miles east or west of Lake Oahe.” Thousands of Native Americans have vowed to continue to fight the pipeline.
Water protector: “The government had just the 20-mile ban, the injunction, so they lifted it, so now it’s full outright war against the Native people, since the Dakota Access pipeline is going to go full force ahead. They have called in reinforcements from other sheriff’s departments across the U.S. And the camp, the Oceti Sakowin Camp, the Red Warrior Camp and all the other encampments are calling for reinforcements to come, not only get on the front lines, but also help to prepare for winter and winterize the camps.”
Meanwhile, in Peekskill, New York, seven activists were arrested Monday blockading the construction of Spectra Energy’s AIM pipeline, which is slated to run only hundreds of feet from the aging Indian Point nuclear power plant and then under the Hudson River. Four of the activists blockaded construction of the pipeline for more than 15 hours by crawling inside the pipeline and locking themselves to each other. This is one of the protesters.
Activist: “We crawled into the pipeline at about 7:00 this morning. The workers realized that we were here about a half an hour later, and police officers were called. They attempted negotiating with us from afar. They made a few threats about sending in canines and things like that. Otherwise, most of the day was spent with us sitting here playing 20 questions.”
In Arizona, hundreds of people rallied at a U.S.-Mexico border checkpoint on Sunday to demand the permanent closure of all border checkpoints throughout the United States. Activists linked arms at the checkpoint and refused to leave. Authorities threatened to use tear gas to disperse the protesters. Protesters also staged a die-in in at the steps of the Customs and Border Patrol office. The action was organized by the group SOA Watch.
In Vermont, five high school students have died after a motorist driving the wrong way down Interstate 89 slammed into the teenagers’ car, which burst into flames. He then stole a police car after the officer stopped to try to put out the fire. He then drove away, turned around and raced back, smashing into more cars that had stopped to help the students in the car crash. The driver, Steven Bourgoin, is a U.S. military veteran who served in Iraq. Authorities say he suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder, PTSD, and that he’d gone to the emergency room the morning before the crash seeking help, but that he was not screened by a mental health clinician. His ex-girlfriend took out a restraining order against him after a domestic violence incident in May. She says he’s threatened to kill her by driving them into a pond. She has won full custody of their toddler. Authorities say Bourgoin is still unconscious and in critical condition after the crash. The students killed in the crash were 16-year-old Mary Harris, 16-year-old Cyrus Zschau, 16-year-old Liam Hale, 15-year-old Janie Cozzi and 16-year-old Eli Brookens. Four of the five students attended Harwood Union High School in Duxbury, Vermont. The co-principal of the school has called it “an unprecedented tragedy.” About a thousand people attended a candlelight vigil for the students, who were all juniors in high school.
In technology news, Samsung has ended the production of its Galaxy Note 7 smartphone, because the device is prone to catching on fire. This comes after Samsung also recalled 2.5 million phones after complaints the batteries were exploding.