Tribune News Service

News Budget for Friday, November 8, 2019


Updated at 6 p.m. EST (2300 UTC).




Additional news stories appear on the MCT-NEWSFEATURES-BJT.

This budget is now available at TribuneNewsService.com, with direct links to stories and art. See details at the end of the budget.


^Impeachment transcripts released for Alexander Vindman and Fiona Hill<

IMPEACHMENT:LA — Two National Security Council experts told House investigators that they had serious concerns about Rudolph W. Giuliani's efforts to affect U.S. policy in Ukraine, including what one called his "partisan investigations" of Democrats, according to transcripts released by House Democrats on Friday.

Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, an expert on Ukraine who still works in the White House, and Fiona Hill, an expert on Russia who left her post in July, voiced similar concerns about the demands that Giuliani, President Donald Trump's personal lawyer, was making in Ukraine and how to work with or around him.

Vindman said that Ukrainian government officials reached out to him in April "for advice on how to respond to Mr. Giuliani's advances, meaning his call to undertake these — what would come across as partisan investigations."

550 by Jennifer Haberkorn and Eli Stokols in Washington. MOVED


^US is focusing on vitamin E as cause of vaping lung injuries<

^MED-VAPING-ILLNESS:BLO—<U.S. health officials are looking closely at vitamin E acetate as a potential cause of the severe lung injuries that have sickened thousands of Americans who have used vaping devices, including more than three dozen who died as a result.

A study of fluid taken from the lungs of 29 patients battling the condition found all of them had signs of vitamin E acetate, according to a report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Friday.

450 by Michelle Fay Cortez. MOVED


^McCarthy temporarily puts Jordan on Intelligence Committee for impeachment hearings<

IMPEACHMENT-GOP-TEAM:CON — Oversight ranking member Jim Jordan will serve on the Intelligence Committee during public impeachment proceedings, temporarily replacing GOP Rep. Rick Crawford, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy announced Friday.

The Ohio Republican has been leading in the closed-door impeachment inquiry depositions that have been conducted jointly by the House Intelligence, Oversight and Foreign Affairs panels. Under procedures the House passed Oct. 31, the Intelligence Committee will be the sole panel participating in the public hearings.

450 by Lindsey McPherson in Washington. MOVED


^Trump declines to endorse Jeff Sessions' Senate bid — but doesn't deliver death knell<

TRUMP-SESSIONS:CON — Donald Trump on Friday declined to endorse Jeff Sessions, the former attorney general he fired after several clashes, as the Alabama Republican seeks the Senate seat he held for decades before joining the administration.

But he also did not demand the former AG end his bid on its first full day, giving Sessions' campaign life — because of "nice" things the Alabaman said about the president on television. As he departed the White House for fundraisers and an event with black voters, he also told reporters during another wild "Chopper Talk" gaggle he is "kicking their ass," referring to House Democrats in their impeachment probe.

1000 by John T. Bennett in Washington. MOVED



^Trump bid to end DACA puts Supreme Court back in political fray<

SCOTUS-DACA:BLO — The U.S. Supreme Court is again poised to test the bounds of Donald Trump's presidential powers, this time in a politically charged clash over the fate of 700,000 people who were brought into the country illegally as children.

The case, set for argument Tuesday, will mark the climax of Trump's two-year campaign to unravel former President Barack Obama's Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. DACA, as it's known, protects those immigrants from deportation and lets them seek jobs.

The dispute is timed to be decided during the heart of next year's presidential campaign, underscoring the stakes for the divisive subject of immigration and for the court itself.

850 by Greg Stohr in Washington. MOVED


^Outed CIA officer has advice for whistleblower under fire<

WHISTLEBLOWER-PLAME:LA — Valerie Plame, whose role as an undercover CIA operative was famously blown in an act of political retribution in 2003, has some advice for the still-anonymous whistleblower who sparked the Trump impeachment investigation: Be prepared to see your life turned upside down.

"Your name is being tossed out in the public sphere and it's being distorted and who you are and what you've done," Plame said Thursday in a telephone interview. "I found it very disorienting."

1000 (with trims) by Noah Bierman in Washington. MOVED


^Facebook, other social media sites pressured to protect census<

SOCIAL-MEDIA-CENSUS:CON — Members of Congress are increasing pressure on social media companies to protect next year's census from disinformation online, concerned that foreign governments and internet trolls could disrupt the 2020 enumeration.

The latest push comes in a letter the Congressional Asian-Pacific American Caucus sent Thursday to Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg, asking her to speak with group members about steps to both promote the census and "combat interference and disinformation on its platform." Russia or another country may try to push the census off course, they say, and Facebook and other companies should be prepared.

1200 by Michael Macagnone in Washington. MOVED


^Trump floats attending Putin's military parade, and Kamala Harris trolls him about meeting 'supporters'<

^TRUMP-PUTIN-PARADE:NY—<Nothing like a good old-fashioned display of Russian military might to get President Donald Trump hyped.

Out of the blue, Trump floated the idea of accepting an invitation from President Vladimir Putin to attend the annual Victory Day parade in Red Square in Moscow.

200 by Dave Goldiner. MOVED



^Despite Ukraine heat, Pompeo seen as front-runner if he seeks Kansas Senate seat<

KANSENATE-POMPEO:CON — Recently released transcripts in the House impeachment inquiry have led to criticism of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo for not stepping up to protect diplomats from White House political pressure over Ukraine.

Republicans in Washington and his native Kansas, however, told CQ Roll Call that nothing they have heard would lead them to back off efforts to recruit Pompeo to run for an open Senate seat in the Sunflower State. They say the former four-term congressman and CIA director would be the immediate front-runner in the race.

"Mike Pompeo is the most respected and popular political figure in Kansas," said Republican strategist David Kensinger, who managed campaigns for former Gov. Sam Brownback and Sen. Pat Roberts. "If he gets in, the seat comes off the board."

700 by Stephanie Akin in Washington. MOVED


^Without Beto O'Rourke, Texas Senate primary is 'wide open'<

OROURKE-TEXAS-SENATE:CON — It's not difficult to find a former presidential candidate who swore off running for Senate and then changed his mind. Former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper did in August. Florida Sen. Marco Rubio did it too, in 2016.

Just don't expect former Texas Rep. Beto O'Rourke to join them after ending his bid for the Democratic presidential nomination.

O'Rourke was initially encouraged to follow up on his surprisingly strong challenge to Texas Sen. Ted Cruz last year by taking on the state's senior senator, Republican John Cornyn, next year. He said multiple times during the presidential campaign he wasn't interested and told his staff on a conference call last week that he would not be running for Senate or any other office, according to a source close to the campaign.

Now some Democrats in Texas say it's time to move on.

1300 (with trims) by Bridget Bowman in Washington. MOVED


^Former VA nominee Ronny Jackson eyes run for Congress<

TEXASCONGRESS-13THDISTRICT-JACKSON:CON — Navy Rear Adm. Ronny Jackson is considering a run for Congress in Texas, two sources familiar with his plans said Friday.

Jackson was the chief White House physician in 2018, when President Donald Trump nominated him to be Veterans Affairs secretary. But Jackson withdrew his nomination from consideration amid allegations that he abused alcohol and mishandled prescription drugs, although he said at the time the charges were "completely false and fabricated."

200 by Bridget Bowman in Washington. MOVED



^Trump courting black voters in Atlanta<

TRUMP-ATLANTA:AT — President Donald Trump is set to arrive in Atlanta on Friday for a busy schedule that includes a high-dollar fundraiser and a speech to launch a new campaign initiative to court black Republican voters.

800 by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution in Atlanta.

Moving later

^Trump rape accuser's attempts to serve complaint thwarted<

TRUMP-ACCUSER:BLO — An author and advice columnist who sued President Donald Trump for defamation after he denied raping her two decades ago in a department store dressing room says she's having no luck serving her complaint at his Trump Tower residence or the White House.

E. Jean Carroll, who went public with her allegations in a June magazine article, said in a court filing on Friday that Secret Service agents thwarted four attempts this week by her process server to deliver the complaint at Trump's signature skyscraper on 5th Avenue in Manhattan and one attempt at the White House.

250 by Erik Larson in New York. MOVED


^Philly cops are used to tragedy. But 6 kids shot in a month can crack their 'emotional shell'<

PHILLY-VIOLENCE-CHILDREN:PH — He was an unintended target, but a target nonetheless.

The 10-year-old boy, shot in the head, dropped to the ground on his walk home from school Wednesday, still wearing his backpack as bystanders rushed to staunch the blood flowing from his neck and onto his school uniform.

Police in an SUV scooped Semaj O'Branty up, racing the boy to St. Christopher's Hospital for Children, where officials say he is in stable condition.

It was the sixth time in 23 days that Philadelphia officers tended to a young child who had been shot.

1700 (with trims) by Oona Goodin-Smith and Anna Orso in Philadelphia. MOVED


^How British professional gambler took aim at $25.8M Lotto jackpot in Connecticut<

LOTTO-JACKPOT-GAMBLER:HC — "Good afternoon, Pete. Just letting you know that we have been monitoring the sales of an individual who is spending an enormous amount of money on the lotto game."

That's what Mark Walerysiak, the security director at the Connecticut Lottery Corp. (CLC), wrote in an email on Oct. 28 to Peter Hsieh, the gaming division director for the state Department of Consumer Protection (DCP).

The email was the beginning of an intriguing yarn about a professional gambler who traveled from Great Britain to Stamford in recent weeks with an audacious plan — to spend as much as $2 million buying "Quick Pick" Lotto tickets by the hundreds of thousands at local convenience stores in hopes of winning the Nov. 1 near-record Connecticut Lotto jackpot of $25.8 million.

2050 (with trims) by Jon Lender in Hartford, Conn. MOVED


^As singer John Legend watched, ex-felons in Miami get their rights to vote restored<

FLA-FELONS-VOTINGRIGHTS:MI — Carmen Brown can vote again.

The 64-year-old Miami woman, with four felonies on her record from decades ago, was the first person called up in a special court hearing Friday aimed at waiving court fees and restoring her right to vote under Florida's Amendment 4.

As a crowded courtroom erupted into applause, Brown hugged Miami-Dade's top prosecutor and public defender. Then, she embraced a special guest, singer John Legend, a high-profile advocate of criminal justice reform who showed up Friday to support the restoration of voting rights.

550 by Jackson Brook and David Ovalle in Miami. MOVED


^Their colleges closed — but their student loans didn't disappear. Then, they sued<

STUDENT-LOANS-LAWSUIT:TB — Keishana Mahone had spent a year studying graphic design when she got the inconceivable news: Her college was closing.

Being in her early 40s, and not wanting to spend years to get a degree, she'd hoped Illinois Institute of Art in Chicago would help her quickly sharpen her skills and advance her career. Instead she left school saddled with student loans and worthless academic credits.

"I was devastated," said Mahone, of the Auburn Gresham neighborhood. "Every time I think back on it, I want to cry."

950 by Dawn Rhodes in Chicago. MOVED


^2 Disney employees, former assistant principal among 17 netted in child porn sting<

FLA-CHILD-PORN-ARRESTS:OS — A Central Florida child porn investigation led to the arrest of 17 men, the Polk County Sheriff's Office announced.

Among the 17, accused of possessing and sharing child porn, were two Disney workers and one was a former middle school assistant principal, officials said.

450 by Joe Mario Pedersen in Orlando, Fla. MOVED


^Florida's legalize marijuana initiatives are low on signatures and time<

FLA-LEGALIZE-MARIJUANA:OS. — Two citizens initiatives that would legalize recreational marijuana in Florida are still far away from gathering enough signatures to get on the 2020 ballot and time is running out.

Regulate Florida has only about 92,000 signatures of the required 766,200 needed by Feb. 1 to qualify. The other group, Make It Legal Florida, has about 57,000 signatures.

By comparison, John Morgan's $15 minimum wage initiative hit the signature mark last week and is now on its way to state Supreme Court review.

1050 by Steven Lemongello in Orlando, Fla. MOVED


^Teacher who wore blackface admits he made 'horrible mistake'<

BLACKFACE-TEACHER:SJ — David Carter, the Milpitas High School teacher who was widely scorned for wearing blackface to school on Halloween to look like rapper-activist Common, said Thursday that he was shocked by the reaction but now realizes he went too far and wants to return to work because "my students need me."

Carter dressed up as Common, complete with a bald cap and dark face makeup, on Oct. 31, and a video clip of his class that day — shared online by a student who received it in a message — has since been viewed hundreds of thousands of times on Twitter, garnered national news coverage and spurred wide-ranging discussions on campus about the racist history behind blackface.

He has been placed on paid administrative leave while the school district conducts an internal investigation.

900 by Robert Salonga and Joseph Geha in San Jose, Calif. MOVED


^Passenger gropes woman on American Airlines flight, forcing early landing, police say<

PASSENGER-GROPE:RA — A flight from North Carolina was forced to land unexpectedly after a man was accused of groping another passenger, officials say.

A woman and her daughter were sleeping on the Salt Lake City-bound plane when a man in their row allegedly started assaulting them on Tuesday night, KOKI reports.

200 by Simone Jasper in Raleigh, N.C. MOVED


^Mayor appoints retired LAPD Chief Charlie Beck as interim Chicago police superintendent<

CHICAGO-POLICECHIEF:TB — Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced Friday she's appointing former Los Angeles police Chief Charlie Beck as Chicago's interim police superintendent.

Lightfoot made the announcement for retiring Superintendent Eddie Johnson's replacement at a morning City Hall news conference.

Beck, 66, was a 42-year member of the Los Angeles Police Department, serving 8 years as chief until his retirement in June 2018.

250 by Jeremy Gorner and Gregory Pratt in Chicago. MOVED


^Donald Jr. compares Trump family's 'sacrifice' to slain soldiers on eve of Veterans Day<

TRUMPJR-BOOK-VETERANS:NY — "Sacrifice" would not normally be a word associated with the Trump family and Donald Trump Jr. in particular.

But Junior suggests in a new book that his billionaire family's willingness to forgo possible additional profits is similar to the ultimate sacrifice made by American service members who died in battle.

Donald Trump Jr. made the offensive comparison when he recalled his rare feeling of emotion as he accompanied his father on a visit to Arlington National Cemetery on the eve of President Trump's inauguration in 2017.

250 by Dave Goldiner in New York. MOVED


^Man shot and killed while rushing to defend 17-year-old niece being sexually assaulted in home, Chicago police say<

CHICAGO-SHOOTING-UNCLE:TB — A man was shot and killed as he rushed to protect his 17-year-old niece who was being sexually assaulted in the bedroom of their home in the Burnside neighborhood on the South Side Thursday night, according to Chicago police.

A suspect — a 25-year-old man with a minor arrest record — was taken into custody by officers who responded to the attack about 9 p.m.

300 in Chicago. MOVED



^Huge crowd cheers Brazil's Lula as he leaves prison after 19 months<

BRAZIL-LULA:DPA — Brazil's former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva was welcomed by an ecstatic crowd of supporters on leaving prison on Friday.

Judge Danilo Pereira had ordered Lula's release after the Federal Supreme Court decided on Thursday that an individual's imprisonment based solely on a criminal conviction can take place only after all possibilities of appealing the decision have been exhausted.

Firecrackers exploded and the crowd broke into a huge cheer when Lula addressed them, saying: "I did not think I would be here today."

350 by Sinikka Tarvainen in Bogota, Colombia. MOVED


^Police fire tear gas as Hong Kong vigils turn violent<

HONGKONG-PROTESTS-DEATH:DPA — Police dispersed crowds with tear gas late Friday as vigils and protests took place across Hong Kong over the death of 22-year-old Chow Tsz-lok, a student protester who fell from a parking garage near where police also used tear gas at an earlier anti-government demonstration.

Protesters and police officers have routinely been injured since demonstrations broke out in June, but no deaths had previously been directly connected to the clashes.

500 by Viola Gaskell in Hong Kong. MOVED


^Kim Kardashian enters China's influencer world. She says she'd love to eat hot pot and play mah-jongg<

CHINA-KARDASHIAN-INFLUENCER:LA — Twelve million people watched as Kim Kardashian West opened a mah-jongg set on screen, displaying the domino-like tiles of the popular Chinese game.

The Los Angeles-based reality TV celebrity was speaking on a livestream channel run by Chinese influencer Viya, a spunky, bright-eyed woman in her 30s with more than 9 million followers on China's e-commerce platform Taobao, many of whom are die-hard fans who call themselves "women of Viya."

Every night, the livestream shopper hawks cosmetics, purses, apparel and snacks online.

This is what's known in China as "social commerce," a full fusion of social media and online shopping. In China's online ecosystem, where e-payments, livestreaming and e-commerce are fully integrated — as if Amazon, Instagram and Paypal all existed on one platform — influencers such as Kardashian have become a major driver of consumption.

That drive is ramping up as Nov. 11, China's "Singles' Day" and the largest shopping day of the year, approaches.

1000 by Alice Su in Beijing. MOVED




NEWSBRIEFS:MCT — Nation and world news briefs.

Moving later


^She feeds Bel-Air's mega-mansion boom. But lunch is a battlefield<

LA-MANSIONS-BOOM:LA — Twenty-thousand-dollar date palms fluttered in the breeze and cranes glinted against the sapphire sky as Jennifer Ramirez pulled her lunch truck to a stop outside the half-finished mansion on Bel Air Road.

It was her third stop on a balmy Friday, a bustling site packed with construction vehicles and hardhats laboring behind green privacy mesh. One moment, the 20-year-old from South Los Angeles stood alone on the glittering pavement, her 5-foot frame dwarfed by one of the most expensive homes ever built. The next, she was mobbed by a dozen hungry workers scrambling for their 9:45 a.m. lunch.

Her horn signals a 20-minute break in a 10-hour day, a chance to trade gossip with gardeners at the compound next door or the carpenters at the site down the block. Los Angeles is in the midst of a development boom. Ramirez's Munch Truck makes 15 stops in four hours, selling hundreds of meals to men who build homes the size of strip malls.

2250 by Sonja Sharp in Los Angeles. MOVED


^Trump wants to win even more rural votes in 2020. Democrats are scrambling to catch up<

TRUMP-RURALVOTERS:WA — Corey Bauch is eager to explain why he regrets not voting for Donald Trump.

The 44-year old-agreed to meet with me last week in this rural Wisconsin town (population of 1,500), where he has lived most of his life. As we talked, horse-drawn buggies from the local Amish community rolled past a small outpost of stores, on their way to nearby farms.

The libertarian Bauch was one of the few in rural Wisconsin who didn't support Trump in 2016, saying he reminded him of an arrogant boss. But after the election, he began to see the president's outspoken style as an antidote to Washington's pervasive corruption.

He plans to vote for Trump next year.

Trump can win reelection in a number of ways. But perhaps the most likely way the president can win next November is with voters like Bauch, in rural regions of key battleground states, who didn't back Trump in 2016 but are inclined to do so now.

2700 (with trims) by Alex Roarty in Augusta, Wis. MOVED




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