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HeadlinesSeptember 30, 2020

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Trump Refuses to Condemn White Supremacists or Rule Out Post-Election Violence

Sep 30, 2020

President Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden met in Cleveland, Ohio, Tuesday for the first of three scheduled presidential debates. It was a night filled with chaos and insults as Trump repeatedly mocked and interrupted Biden, who responded by calling Trump a clown and the worst president the nation has ever had. During one exchange, Trump refused to condemn white supremacists after being questioned by debate moderator Chris Wallace of Fox News.

President Donald Trump: “What do you want to call them? Give me a name. Give me a name.”

Chris Wallace: “White supremacists and right-wing” —

Joe Biden: “White supremacists.”

President Donald Trump: “Go ahead. Who would you like me to condemn?”

Joe Biden: “Proud Boys.”

Chris Wallace: “White supremacists and right-wing militia.”

Joe Biden: “The Proud Boys.”

President Donald Trump: “Proud Boys, stand back and stand by. But I’ll tell you what. I’ll tell you what. Somebody’s got to do something about antifa and the left, because this is not a right-wing problem.”

Joe Biden: “His own” —

President Donald Trump: “This is a left-wing” —

Joe Biden: “His own FBI director said the threat comes from white supremacists.”

President Donald Trump: “This is a left-wing problem.”

Soon after Trump said these words, the Proud Boys posted a new version of their logo with Trump’s quote: “Stand back and stand by.” The Southern Poverty Law Center describes the Proud Boys as a hate group whose leaders regularly spout white nationalist memes and maintain affiliations with known extremists.

During Tuesday’s debate, President Trump refused to tell his supporters not to engage in violence after the election. Trump also made false or misleading statements about climate change, the coronavirus pandemic, cases of election fraud, prescription drug prices, manufacturing jobs, Trump’s political endorsements and more. After headlines, we’ll air excerpts of the debate and get response from around the country.

New York City Coronavirus Infections Surge for First Time in Months

Sep 30, 2020

The United States recorded 43,000 new coronavirus cases and over 900 deaths Tuesday as public health experts warned of a new wave of infections. In Florida, officials in Miami-Dade County say they won’t fully comply with Republican Governor Ron DeSantis’s order allowing bars, restaurants and other businesses to reopen at unlimited capacity.

The NFL said Tuesday it will suspend in-person practices for the Tennessee Titans and Minnesota Vikings, after three Titans players and five staff members tested positive for coronavirus.

Here in New York, city officials said Tuesday they’ll begin fining people who refuse to wear masks in public, after New York’s coronavirus test positivity rate climbed above 3% for the first time in months. The uptick comes as some New York City schoolchildren returned to classrooms for the first time since March. A new study by the United Hospital Fund finds about 4,200 children in New York lost at least one parent to COVID-19 this year — more New Yorkers than died in the September 11 attacks.

Meanwhile, the American Academy of Pediatrics warned Tuesday that coronavirus cases among children have soared since schools around the country reopened to in-person classes this fall. Children of all ages now comprise 10% of all U.S. coronavirus cases — compared to just 2% last April.

Indian Health Officials Claim 60 Million Coronavirus Infections Nationwide

Sep 30, 2020

India reported more than 80,000 new coronavirus cases over the last 24 hours, with the official death toll rapidly approaching 100,000. India’s lead pandemic agency said Tuesday an antibody study suggests more than 60 million people nationwide have already been infected with the coronavirus — 10 times the official count, but still a small fraction of India’s population of 1.3 billion. India is second to the United States as the country with the most reported cases of COVID-19.

This comes as the World Bank warned the pandemic has led to a rise in poverty in East Asian and Pacific nations for the first time in two decades, with as many as 38 million additional people set to fall below the poverty line this year.

House Democrats Unveil Pared-Down $2.2 Trillion Coronavirus Relief Bill

Sep 30, 2020

On Capitol Hill, House Democrats have introduced a slimmed-down coronavirus stimulus bill in a last-ditch effort to get Senate Republicans to agree to another round of relief ahead of the November election. The $2.2 trillion aid package would restore $600-a-week enhanced unemployment benefits and send another round of $1,200 stimulus checks to most U.S. taxpayers. It would also provide funding for small business loans, housing subsidies, election protection, aid to school districts and the U.S. Postal Service, and money for coronavirus testing and tracing. Senate Republican Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has repeatedly refused to take up the $3.4 trillion HEROES Act passed by House Democrats more than four months ago.

Texas Sheriff and Prosecutor Indicted for Evidence Tampering in Javier Ambler Police Killing

Sep 30, 2020

A warning to our audience: The following story contains graphic images of police violence. In Texas, a county sheriff and local prosecutor have been indicted on felony charges of evidence tampering related to the police killing of Javier Ambler, an African American man who was tasered to death during a traffic stop in March of 2019 as he told officers, “I have congestive heart failure,” and “I can’t breathe.” Ambler’s death was recorded by the former reality TV show “Live PD,” but the footage was never publicly released. On Monday, a Williamson County grand jury indicted Sheriff Robert Chody and former county attorney Jason Nassour on charges they intentionally destroyed or concealed recordings of the killing. Both men face up to 10 years in prison if convicted.

Kentucky AG Didn’t Recommend Murder Charges for Breonna Taylor’s Killers

Sep 30, 2020

In Kentucky, Republican Attorney General Daniel Cameron said Tuesday he never asked a grand jury to consider homicide charges for the three police officers who shot into the home of 26-year-old African American Louisville resident Breonna Taylor last March, killing her. Cameron was speaking with a Louisville TV station about the three white plainclothes officers who burst into Taylor’s home as they served a no-knock warrant in March: Myles Cosgrove, Jonathan Mattingly and Brett Hankison.

Attorney General Daniel Cameron: “Well, basically, your question is about whether we recommended any murder charges against Cosgrove and Mattingly. And the answer is no. Ultimately, our judgment is that the charge that we could prove at trial beyond a reasonable doubt was for wanton endangerment against Mr. Hankison.”

Kentucky Attorney General Cameron is due to release recordings from grand jury proceedings in Breonna Taylor’s killing today, following a judge’s order they be made public.

Trump Plans Pre-Election ICE Raids in U.S. Sanctuary Cities

Sep 30, 2020

In immigration news, The Washington Post reports the Trump administration is planning mass raids in pro-immigrant sanctuary cities across the United States. Immigration and Customs Enforcement could begin the operation in California as soon as this week and expand to other cities, including Denver and Philadelphia. Trump has repeatedly threatened to cut off federal funding to sanctuary cities if they do not comply with his immigration policies.

More Women Detail Forced Sterilizations, Unnecessary Surgeries at Georgia ICE Jail

Sep 30, 2020

In more immigration news, firsthand accounts continue to emerge of women who were seen by Dr. Mahendra Amin, the physician accused of performing forced sterilizations at the privately run Irwin Detention Center in Georgia. The New York Times interviewed 16 women who say they were treated by Amin, including women who had undergone invasive gynecological surgeries that were likely medically unnecessary. The Times reports Amin consistently overstated the risk of cysts or masses on a patient’s reproductive organs and lied about the symptoms some women experienced to justify aggressive surgeries. At least one attorney had complained to Irwin’s warden as far back as 2018, after a woman came forward with concerns about recent gynecological care she had received while imprisoned at Irwin.

In related news, BuzzFeed reports the Trump administration has dropped its years-long fight to block pregnant undocumented teenagers in government custody from obtaining abortions.

World Health Organization Workers Accused of Sexually Exploiting Women in DRC

Sep 30, 2020

In the Democratic Republic of Congo, over 50 women are accusing workers with the World Health Organization and other international aid groups of sexual exploitation and abuse during efforts to fight Ebola between 2018 and 2020. In a new report by the New Humanitarian and the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the women detail multiple incidents of sexual violence, including allegedly being forced into having sex with aid workers in exchange for jobs. U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres has called for an investigation.

Amnesty International Shuts Indian Offices Amid “Incessant Witch-Hunt” by Modi Government

Sep 30, 2020

In India, Amnesty International has been forced to shutter operations and lay off all staff after the Indian government froze its bank accounts following two reports published by the organization this month critical of the country’s human rights violations. Amnesty staff say there is an “incessant witch-hunt” of human rights groups by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Hindu nationalist government. This is David Griffiths, director of the Office of the Secretary General at Amnesty International.

David Griffiths: “They’re simply seeking to silence those who criticize them, those who call out human rights abuses in the country. We have seen a steadily intensifying series of attacks for several years. That is certain.”

Mexico Orders Arrest of Soldiers over Disappeared Ayotzinapa Students

Sep 30, 2020

In Mexico, authorities are bringing criminal charges against military soldiers for the first time in the ongoing investigation into the 2014 disappearance and likely massacre of 43 students from a teachers’ college in Ayotzinapa, Guerrero. Mexican authorities announced Tuesday they have issued at least 25 arrest warrants against suspects believed to be the “material and intellectual authors of the disappearance,” including a former head of the federal police. Families of the disappeared students have long maintained the military was involved in the mass abduction.

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