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The three men who chased down and killed Ahmaud Arbery in the coastal Georgia town of Brunswick last year were found guilty of murder Wednesday afternoon.
The jury'a decision was read in court shortly after 1:30 p.m. ET as Arbery's family members cried out in relief.
Travis McMichael, his father, Greg McMichael, and their neighbor William "Roddie" Bryan were all convicted of felony murder in the fatal shooting of Arbery, a 25-year-old Black man. The verdict meant that they committed felonies that led to Arbery's death. Travis McMichael, who fired the fatal shotgun blasts, was found guilty of malice murder, which requires intent to kill, while the elder McMichael and Bryan were acquitted of that charge. Each defendant now faces a potential sentence of life in prison without parole.
All three men also face federal hate crime charges.
Early Friday the House approved President Joe Biden's sweeping $1.9 trillion spending bill, known as the Build Back Better Act, following an hours-long rant by Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy that stalled action on Thursday night.
Biden's landmark legislation now requires approval in the Senate, where Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin has expressed concerns over a variety of programs in the bill as well as its supposed impact on inflation and deficits.
Two weeks ago the House passed the bipartisan infrastructure bill -- already passed in the Senate -- and Biden signed it into law, marking a win for his domestic agenda.
House members will now return to their districts for Thanskgiving recess.
A federal grand jury has indicted former Trump aide Steve Bannon for failing to comply with a subpoena issued by the House Select Committee on the January 6th Attack. Attorney General Merrick Garland announced the Bannon indictment on Friday afternoon.
The Department of Justice release noted that Bannon, 67, has been charged with one count of contempt of Congress for "his refusal to appear for a deposition," and with a second count for"his refusal to produce documents." He will be arraigned in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia on a future date yet to be set.
In a statement released with the announced indictment Garland said: "Since my first day in office, I have promised Justice Department employees that together we would show the American people by word and deed that the department adheres to the rule of law, follows the facts and the law, and pursues equal justice under the law."
For each count of contempt of Congress, Bannon could be imprisoned for a minimum of 30 days and a maximum of one year, plus fines of up to $1,000.
Former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, who failed to appear for a committee deposition this week, and other former Trump aides subpoenaed by the committee could become subject to prosecution under the same statute.
Following a long day of negotiations and threats, Congressional Democrats transcended their disagreements to pass a $1 trillion package of highway, port, broadband and other infrastructure development, which means it will now go to President Joe Biden's desk for his signature.
The 228-to-206 vote late on Friday night marked a substantial victory for House Democrats, who have debated for many weeks over the spending bills that from Biden's domestic agenda.With Senate passage already achieved, the Biden administration will now embark on the most sweeping improvement of U.S. roads, railways, and other transportation infrastructure in a generation, creating up to a million jobs and sharpening
American competitiveness with international rivals.
Democrats continue to face a complicated path toward completion of Biden's second domestic spending bill: an historic expansion of the nation's safety net as well as programs to combat climate change. Estimated at $1.75 trillion, that sweeping package represents the largest expansion of social benefits since 1965, but progressives and centrists have yet to fully agree on its terms and funding.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi had sought to pass both bills on Friday, but she postponed action on the second bill after centrists demanded a nonpartisan estimate of its costs, which may require weeks of work by the Congressional Budget Office.
After hours of closed-door meetings, a bloc of centrist legislators promised their support for the bill by November 20, on the assumption that the CBO agrees its costs equal the White House estimates.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced on Tuesday morning that he is resigning in the face of impeachment over sexual assault allegation.
"I'm a New Yorker, born and bred. I'm a fighter and my instinct is to fight through this controversy because I truly believe it is politically motivated, I believe it is unfair and it is untruthful and I believe it demonizes behavior that is unsustainable for society," he said. But he added, "New York tough means New York loving, and I love New York, and I love you. I would never want to be unhelpful in any way."
An investigation by New York Attorney General Letitia James released last week found that the governor had "sexually harassed multiple women and violated state law." Following the release of that report, numerous Democratic officials called on him to resign, including President Joe Biden, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and scores of New York legislators. Although Cuomo has denied the allegations, he acknowledged today that he has "been too familiar with people" and apologized to the women he has "truly offended."
When he leaves office in two weeks, Cuomo will be replaced by Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul, a former member of Congress from Buffalo who will be the state's first female governor.
Yet another Trump supporter who loudly repeated the former president's lies about election fraud in the 2020 election is now under investigation for vote fraud himself.
According to multiple news outlets, both federal and state authorities are probing the recent campaign of Marko Kepi – a narrowly defeated candidate for City Council in the Republican primary on New York's Staten Island. Kepi is suspected of forging absentee ballots by officials of the New York City Board of Elections.
Ironically many Republicans, including Kepi, have insinuated that Democrats misused absentee ballots authorized for use by voters wishing to avoid crowded voting places during the pandemic.
Reporters for New York City's public radio station, WNYC, and its online publication Gothamist, have obtained an internal Board of Elections memo that indicated concern over more than a thousand absentee ballots handled by Kepi campaign workers. Many of those ballots carried signatures that didn't match voting records, WNYC reported – and there was at least one ballot that was supposedly cast by a voter who was actually deceased. (Trump supporters, including his disgraced attorney Rudy Giuliani, have frequently charged without any evidence that dead people voted for President Biden in various states.)
The same memo noted that similar issues arose during Kepi's campaign for state assembly last year, which he also lost.
The general counsel for the Board of Elections has asked the Justice Department and the New York Attorney General to investigate Kepi's actions, following an executive session vote by the board. Both offices confimed to WNYC that they had received the investigative request. Meanwhile, David Carr, the Republican who defeated Kepi, asked the Staten Island district attorney to open an investigation.
Staten Island DA Michael McMahon, also a Republican, released a statement on the matter. "My office takes these allegations very seriously," McMahon said, "and will fully investigate this matter to ensure the integrity and fairness of our election system."
A spokeman for Kepi's campaign called the allegations a "fake scandal ginned up by a political machine that does not want all legal votes to be counted." He was talking about the Staten Island Republican Party.
We are in the middle of a pandemic that has killed over half a million Americans, yet Sens. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Rand Paul (R-KY) can't bother to wear a mask.
So Seth Meyers is no longer playing games with these toddler politicians, spanking both Cruz and Paul during his hit segment A Closer Look.
"Man, Ted Cruz is the Steph Curry of being a giant dick," Meyers said. "He never misses a shot."
The Late Night host had much more to say about this pair of losers. Click and cackle!
Biden Holds First Press Conference, Ted Cruz Refuses to Wear a Mask: A Closer Look www.youtube.com
Stephen Colbert called for "action" after another "unspeakably tragic" mass shooting took place in America-- the second in as many weeks. Ten people, including a police officer, died grocery shopping in Boulder, CO, and all Republicans had to offer was "thoughts and prayers."
For example, Sen. John Kennedy (R-LA) insists "America doesn't have a gun control problem, we have an "idiot control problem." Colbert could hardly disagree. "Oh, we definitely have an idiot control problem. It's people who don't recognize that this country has long had a gun problem, John Kennedy."
Much, much more -- so click and chortle.
Now's Not The Time To Fix America's Gun Problem, Says GOP In Familiar Refrain www.youtube.com
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has been getting a lot of unwarranted good press in the mainstream media for his handling of the Covid-19 pandemic. Yes, the same reckless governor who recently called his state a "freedom oasis," practically inviting rowdy spring breakers to clog the streets with no masks, has won praise from Fox News, CNN, and the New York Times.
But Trevor Noah isn't here for that nonsense. He reveals what's really happening in Florida, while hilariously mocking DeSantis.
Funny and true -- so click and enjoy!
Did Governor DeSantis really expect college students to not party maskless for spring break after declaring Florida… https://t.co/qYo3T8i5d7— The Daily Show (@The Daily Show) 1616508350.0
In the wake of the brutal mass shootings in Georgia, actress Sandra Oh showed up to grab a microphone at a "Stop Asian Hate" protest in Oakland, PA last weekend. The Killing Eve star delivered a pithy but passionate speech urging all Americans to step up and "help" the beleaguered Asian-American community.
"I am proud to be Asian! I belong here!" she fiercely told the crowd.
It was a breathtaking moment. Click and hear her moving, impromptu speech.
Sandra Oh At "Stop Asian Hate" Protest In Oakland www.youtube.com
Tooning Out The News, the animated satirical snippets produced by Stephen Colbert, uncovered what it describes as a very troubling example of "plagiarism" by Tucker Carlson. The Fox News idol of the swastika set seems to have taken a cue from an old and infamous political tract.
This will undoubtedly annoy Tucker, but hasn't he asked for it? Enjoy!
SCANDAL: The Establishment catches Tucker Carlson plagiarizing. https://t.co/R8RvApYTc6— Tooning Out The News (@Tooning Out The News) 1616171884.0
Trevor Noah traded his normally jovial tone last night for a more somber and angry demeanor, as he discussed the "horrifying" Atlanta mass shooting that left eight people dead, including six Asian-American women. Police officials across Georgia either tamped down the notion that the shooting was a hate crime. Or, like Cherokee City Sheriff Frank Reynolds, made excuses for the shooter by suggesting the shooter was motivated by a "bad day" and a "sexual addiction."
"This guy blamed a specific race of people for his problems," says Noah, "and then murdered them because of it. If that isn't racism, then the word has no meaning."
It's a brief but powerful monologue that everyone should see. Just click.
Why We Should've Seen the Atlanta Shootings Coming | The Daily Social Distancing Show www.youtube.com
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, the Kentucky Republican known affectionately as Moscow Mitch, is clinging desperately to power. He's making threats about "scorched earth" if Democrats change Senate rules to get rid of the filibuster, long a favorite tool to frustrate progress.
McConnell's whining infuriated Stephen Colbert, who called him an "idiot" for not recognizing that the filibuster keeps the Senate from doing anything at all. Plus Stephen reviews the latest FBI busts of morons who invaded the Capitol and then posted incriminating photos of themselves on social media.
Passionate and hilarious. Just click and enjoy!
McConnell Flips Over Filibuster, Aides Reveal More About Gov. Cuomo's Bad Behavior www.youtube.com
So Jimmy Kimmel obviously misses Donald Trump a lot and wanted to check in on the former president. What did he find? A tweeted photo that "makes him look like an old man with his belt pulled up to his nips" -- and a scheme to apparently loot a canine charity in cahoots with his daughter-in-law Lara, "she of the plumped lips."
Yes, the news over the past few days shows that Trump went after the doggy dough. Shocking? Not really, but Kimmel turns this shaggy do story into hilarity.
Republican men don’t want the vaccine & Trump looks fantastic! https://t.co/0MkA8WGTLm— Jimmy Kimmel Live (@Jimmy Kimmel Live) 1615871893.0
Remember the pre-pandemic world? No masks, no capacity limits, and no social distancing. Texas and Mississippi are returning to that nostalgic time -- the only problem being that we are still in a pandemic and COVID-19 variants are spreading. Evidently the governors of those states don't care how many of their constituents die.
Seth Meyers decided to take "a closer look" at these rash decisions by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves, both Republicans. Their moral idiocy is a deadly serious topic, but somehow Seth finds the dark humor.
You'll be outraged, but you'll laugh too.
Texas, Mississippi Lift Mask Mandates; GOP Silent on Amazon Union Push: A Closer Look www.youtube.com
"Vaccine, vaccine, vaccine, vaccine!" Dolly Parton wants you to get your Covid-19 vaccine, as the country legend warbled those words to the tune of her hit song Jolene. After putting a massive amount of her own money into creation of the Moderna vaccine, the iconic star finally got her first shot.
So excited was Dolly that she recorded a video encouraging everyone else and assuring the skeptical people that it's safe. No surprise that "Vaccine" went viral instantly.
Are you a Dolly fan? Who isn't? She always makes us smile.
Dolly Parton shared images and video of herself receiving a Moderna COVID-19 vaccine dose on March 2, 2021. The ico… https://t.co/cDs7jdz2jD— NowThis (@NowThis) 1614778386.0
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The National Memo is a political newsletter and website that combines the spirit of investigative journalism with new technology and ideas. We cover campaigns, elections, the White House, Congress, and the world with a fresh outlook. Our own journalism — as well as our selections of the smartest stories available every day — reflects a clear and strong perspective, without the kind of propaganda, ultra-partisanship and overwrought ideology that burden so much of our political discourse.