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HeadlinesNovember 14, 2022

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Democrats Retain Control of Senate After Narrow Victories in Arizona and Nevada

Nov 14, 2022

Democrats have held on to the U.S. Senate after incumbents Mark Kelly of Arizona and Nevada’s Catherine Cortez Masto won their midterm races over the weekend. If Senator Raphael Warnock beats Republican challenger Herschel Walker in Georgia’s December 6 runoff, Democrats will expand their majority to 51 total Senate seats, meaning they may not need to rely on Vice President Kamala Harris to break a tie and can afford to lose a single vote when confirming executive and judicial nominees or passing certain measures through reconciliation.

House of Representatives Remains Up for Grabs, But Democrats’ Path to Majority Narrows

Nov 14, 2022

Control of the House is still undecided as neither party has secured the necessary 218 seats. Democrats now hold 204 House seats, while Republicans have 212. In Washington state, two Democrats won their races over the weekend: Newcomer Marie Gluesenkamp Pérez beat Trump-backed Joe Kent, while Kim Schrier held on to her seat against Republican Matt Larkin. In neighboring Oregon, Republican Lori Chavez-DeRemer flipped a Democratic seat after beating progressive candidate Jamie McLeod-Skinner, who ousted longtime incumbent Kurt Schrader in the primaries.

Newly elected progressive Democrats arrived in D.C. Sunday to meet with members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, including 25-year-old Maxwell Frost of Florida, who became the first Generation Z congressmember.

Rep.-elect Maxwell Alejandro Frost: “We have heard all about this red wave and this and that. And when you look at the numbers, we see that what stopped the red wave were young voters who turned out in historic numbers, who voted for Democrats over 63%.”

GOP Election Deniers Lose Races for Key Offices in Battleground States

Nov 14, 2022

In Nevada, Democrat Cisco Aguilar defeated 2020 election denier Jim Marchant to become secretary of state. And in Arizona’s secretary of state race, Democrat Adrian Fontes beat out Republican Mark Finchem, who has ties to the far-right Oath Keepers group.

In Arizona’s governor’s race, Democrat Katie Hobbs has maintained her narrow lead over Republican Kari Lake. Lake, whose chances of overtaking Hobbs look increasingly slim, previously refused to say whether she would accept a loss, and has been predicting a major victory for days while making baseless allegations that election officials were slowing down the counting.

Ukraine Recaptures Kherson After Eight-Month Russian Occupation

Nov 14, 2022

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has visited the recaptured southern city of Kherson, which Russia had occupied since March before fleeing last week, celebrating a major victory in the ongoing war. Zelensky said investigators found evidence of hundreds of Russian war crimes in Kherson. Over the weekend, jubilant crowds in Kherson greeted Ukrainian soldiers.

Natalia Koloba: “It is impossible to express in words what I feel now. Never in my life had I felt such joy as now. Our brothers, our protectors have come, and here we are free today. This is unbelievable, impossible to convey. Kherson is Ukraine, and the Ukrainian army is the best army in the world.”

Zelensky said over the weekend fighting in the Russian-occupied eastern Donetsk region was like “hell.” Kyiv is hoping to reclaim Donetsk, though it’s expected to be a particularly tough battle as part of the region is defended by long-standing separatists.

At COP27, Biden Apologizes over Trump’s Actions on Climate, Doesn’t Mention Loss & Damage

Nov 14, 2022

The Biden administration announced plans that would lower methane emissions from domestic oil and gas drilling by 87% below 2005 levels. The new regulations were unveiled as President Biden attended the COP27 climate summit here in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, Friday.

President Joe Biden: “We immediately rejoined the Paris Agreement. We convened major climate summits and reestablished — I apologize we ever pulled out of the agreement.”

The United States is currently the second-largest emitter of greenhouse gases after China and by far the largest historic polluter, accounting for about 20% of global carbon dioxide emissions. During his remarks, Biden did not mention the issue of “loss and damage.” Climate activists are pushing the U.S. to compensate poorer countries over the irreversible impacts of global heating.

Climate Activists Rally at COP27 for Climate Justice

Nov 14, 2022

Outside the halls of COP27, hundreds of people rallied Saturday to demand global systemic transformation to defend human rights and combat the climate catastrophe. This is South African climate activist Gabriel Klaasen.

Gabriel Klaasen: “We are not only representing ourselves, but the communities that we come from, the frontline and affected communities that we come from, the areas and the spaces that continue to be extracted from for the use of big industries, big corporations, big countries, big fossil fuel industries. For too long have we invested in fossil fuels and a dead future. The reason that we are here today is to stand up and say enough is enough. It’s time for climate justice. It’s time for change.”

Climate rallies also took place in other cities across the world as part of a global day of action.

Family of Egyptian Political Prisoner Alaa Abd El-Fattah Receives “Proof of Life” Letter

Nov 14, 2022

The family of imprisoned activist and writer Alaa Abd El-Fattah received a letter from him today in the first proof of life since October 31. El-Fattah stopped drinking water on November 6, at the start of COP27, after already being on a hunger strike for seven months protesting his imprisonment. In the letter, dated Saturday, November 12, El-Fattah said he began drinking water again on that day. He also said his vital signs are “ok” and that he was receiving medical care. In response, El-Fattah’s sister Sanaa Seif said, “We’re relieved to see proof of life, I can sleep today without nightmares. But we want this to be over, our family deserves a break, we need to be reunited in peace.” Meanwhile, El-Fattah’s lawyer was denied entry to the prison today for the third time despite receiving permission from the prosecutor’s office.

El-Fattah’s plight has received intensified attention over the past week with British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and U.S. President Joe Biden all raising his case in their meetings with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi.

Biden Holds First Face-to-Face Meeting of Presidency with China’s Xi Jinping

Nov 14, 2022

President Biden met with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Bali, Indonesia, today for their first in-person talks since Biden took office. The meeting took place ahead of the G20 summit and amid increasing tensions between the two countries over Taiwan, the war in Ukraine and technology. President Xi pledged to hold “candid” talks with Biden, saying, “The world has come to a crossroads.” Biden expressed similar sentiments. We’ll have more on the Biden-Xi meeting later in the broadcast.

In between his appearances at COP27 and the G20 summit, Biden was in Cambodia on Saturday to address the Association of Southeast Asian Nations. Biden’s visit to the ASEAN Summit came as human rights groups warned Southeast Asian leaders have done little to challenge Burma’s military rulers, who seized power in a February 2021 coup.

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Turkey Blames Kurdish Separatists for Istanbul Bomb Blast That Killed 6

Nov 14, 2022

Turkish police have arrested 46 people following Sunday’s explosion in a crowded Istanbul neighborhood that killed at least six people and injured dozens of others. The suspected bomber is among the arrested. Turkey has blamed Kurdish fighters for the attack, though the perpetrator has yet to be confirmed.

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Iranian Court Issues First Death Sentence over Protests That Erupted in September

Nov 14, 2022

Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Court has issued its first known death sentence to a person convicted of participating in banned anti-government protests. The court also handed down prison terms of up to a decade to five people charged with violations of national security and public order. The protests erupted more than seven weeks ago after the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini in police custody. Human rights groups report at least 326 people have been killed in the demonstrations.

U.N. Envoy Calls on U.S. and Allies to Lift Sanctions on Syria, Citing Harm to Civilians

Nov 14, 2022

A United Nations envoy is urging Western and other nations to lift catastrophic sanctions that were imposed on Syria over a decade ago after the start of the war. The U.N. says the measures enacted by the United States, the European Union and others have exacerbated “the destruction and trauma” faced by the Syrian people, leading to dangerous shortages of medicine, food, water, shelter and other essential resources. At least 90% of Syria’s population lives in poverty, with sanctions severely undermining efforts of economic recovery, according to the U.N. envoy.

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Israeli Troops Kill 19-Year-Old Palestinian Woman During Raid in Occupied West Bank

Nov 14, 2022

In news from the occupied West Bank, Israeli forces killed a Palestinian woman during a raid in the city of Beitunia Monday. The 19-year-old was fatally shot after an attempted vehicle check. So far this year, Israeli soldiers have killed over 130 Palestinians in assaults in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, making 2022 the deadliest year since at least 2006.

Ethiopia Agrees to Allow Humanitarian Access to War-Torn Tigray

Nov 14, 2022

Ethiopia’s government and Tigrayan officials signed an agreement making way for immediate humanitarian access as the two sides move ahead with a peace deal reached in South Africa earlier this month. This is former Kenyan president, a mediator in the deal, Uhuru Kenyatta.

Uhuru Kenyatta: “There shall be a severe sanction on anyone who will commit atrocities against civilians.”

All parties to the Tigray War have been accused of war crimes. By some estimates, up to 800,000 people have died in the two-year-long war, while millions have been displaced. The U.N. says 5.2 million people in Tigray are in urgent need of humanitarian assistance.

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A Shooter Is at Large After Killing 3 People on University of Virginia Campus

Nov 14, 2022

Back in the U.S., in Charlottesville, Virginia, at least three people were killed and two others wounded late Sunday after a gunman opened fire at a garage on the University of Virginia campus. Classes were canceled Monday as the suspect, who is also a student, is still at large.

Biden Admin Extends TPS for Hundreds of Thousands

Nov 14, 2022

The Biden administration has extended temporary protected status, or TPS, for people from Haiti, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Honduras, Sudan and Nepal until June 2024. The move will apply to some 392,000 immigrants. Their relief was due to expire by the end of this year.

Twitter Lays Off More Workers, Forced to Halt “Checkmark” Subscription as Fake Accounts Flood Site

Nov 14, 2022

Twitter put on hold its recently launched $8 “blue checkmark” subscription service Friday after fake accounts inundated the site. Among the imposter accounts, a fake Eli Lilly account posted a tweet announcing they would make insulin free, causing the pharmaceutical company’s stock to take a plunge. Meanwhile, a fake Lockheed Martin account, @LockheedMartini, posted it would halt weapons sales to Saudi Arabia, Israel and the U.S., causing the real Lockheed Martin to lose its share value. Fake accounts for Tesla were also created.

In related news, Twitter started laying off a large number of its contract workers on Saturday, including those working on content moderation. One of Elon Musk’s first acts as Twitter’s new owner was to lay off around half the company’s permanent staff earlier this month.

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