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Woody Guthrie — who despised Trump's dad — gets statue in his presidential sculpture garden of ‘heroes’

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Woody Guthrie is on a list of American icons who will have statues built in their honor on President Donald Trump’s orders — even though the late folk music legend wrote a seething song decades ago about the Trump family’s allegedly racist business practices in New York City.

The Guthrie statue will be among more than 100 sculptures ...Read more

Barbara J. Perenic/The Columbus Dispatch/Barbara J. Perenic

Ohio officials report 4,312 additional COVID-19 cases; state total to date tops 831,000

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COLUMBUS, Ohio — State health officials reported another 4,312 coronavirus cases Monday, bringing the total statewide during the ongoing pandemic to 831,066.

The new daily total was well below the 21-day average of 7,430, though the latest numbers were posted by the Ohio Department of Health on the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day holiday, when...Read more

Joshua Boucher/TNS

Nearly 3,000 new COVID-19 cases, 8 more deaths reported across SC

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COLUMBIA, S.C. —Though numbers eased in comparison to recent eye-popping highs, South Carolina's health department on Monday still announced nearly 3,000 more cases of COVID-19 statewide.

The state Department of Health and Environmental Control announced on Monday 2,946 new confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus. The agency reported 12,806 ...Read more

Ryan Garza, Detroit Free Press/Detroit Free Press/TNS

State capitols brace for cyberattacks

Current News / News & Features /

When a pro-Trump mob stormed into the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, rioters didn't just smash windows and break furniture. They also pilfered at least two laptops: one from the office of Oregon Democratic Sen. Jeff Merkley, another from a conference room used by Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

The next day, House administrative officials ...Read more

Texas man threatened to shoot family if they reported him going in US Capitol, FBI says

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FORT WORTH, Texas — A Wylie man arrested over the weekend for going inside of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 told his family he went there "to protect the country" and threatened to shoot his children if they turned him in, authorities say.

Guy Reffitt took his gun with him when they "stormed the Capitol" and recorded some of the events on his Go...Read more

Jerry Holt/Minneapolis Star Tribune/TNS

Police watchdog group says Minneapolis uses loophole to keep police misconduct from the public

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MINNEAPOLIS — One Minneapolis police officer made a reckless turn and caused a "preventable" car crash.

In a separate case, an officer failed to turn on his body camera while interviewing witnesses at a crime scene.

Another officer used "inappropriate language" toward a victim of domestic assault and then never wrote a report on the call.

...Read more

Yuri Gripas/Abaca Press/TNS

Pelosi demands halt to naming GOP operative as NSA

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WASHINGTON — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi demanded that the Defense Department halt plans to install a Republican operative as the top lawyer at the National Security Agency in the closing hours of President Donald Trump’s administration.

The appointment of Michael Ellis as NSA general counsel is “highly suspect,” Pelosi told Acting ...Read more

SAUL LOEB/Getty Images North America/TNS

Census director quits amid criticism that delayed count was politicized

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WASHINGTON — Census Bureau Director Steven Dillingham announced his resignation Monday amid criticism of his handling of the decennial census and allegations he allowed the count to be politicized.

Dillingham made the announcement in a statement that thanked the bureau’s staff for their work conducting the count amid a global pandemic. For ...Read more

Cuomo seeks COVID-19 vaccine deal with Pfizer, making good on threat to slow hospitals

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ALBANY, N.Y. — Gov. Andrew Cuomo, fed up with the federal government’s frustratingly slow rollout of COVID-19 vaccines, is going straight to the source.

The governor penned a letter Monday to Pfizer asking if the pharmaceutical giant would cut out the middleman and sell doses directly to New York.

“You no doubt understand the challenges ...Read more

Stefani Reynolds/Getty Images North America/TNS

Kamala Harris resigns Senate seat ahead of historic inauguration

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Sen. Kamala Harris officially resigned her Senate seat on Monday ahead of her historic inauguration as the first woman vice president in American history.

Harris, who has served as California’s junior Democratic senator since 2017, submitted a letter to Gov. Gavin Newsom, saying her resignation took effect at noon. Newsom later in the day ...Read more

Kent Nishimura/Los Angeles Times/TNS

Social media platforms are cracking down to prevent Inauguration Day violence

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Over the four years of the Trump presidency, social media platforms generally took a soft line in enforcing their policies against threats and misinformation, allowing most borderline speech, including the president's, to stand.

In the wake of a deadly riot at the U.S. Capitol aimed at disrupting the transfer of power, and ahead of an ...Read more

Georgia teen returns home after Cayman Islands prison release

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ATLANTA — After spending more than a month in a Cayman Islands prison for breaking COVID-19 quarantine rules, a metro Atlanta teenager is back home, according to Channel 2 Action News.

Skylar Mack, 18, of Loganville, arrived at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport on Friday, where she reunited with her mother, the news station reported.

...Read more

Darren McGee- Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo/New York Daily News/TNS

Gov. Cuomo to skip Biden inauguration amid concerns over threats to Albany, other state capitals

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ALBANY, N.Y. — New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is skipping Joe Biden’s inauguration, opting to stay in Albany amid threats of potential violence and the possibility of armed protesters targeting capitals across the country.

The governor said Monday he will not attend the ceremony in Washington in the wake of warnings from the FBI about pro-Trump...Read more

Rebekah Jones/Miami Herald/TNS

Rebekah Jones, Florida's former COVID-19 data manager, bonds out of jail

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FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — A judge agreed to release Rebekah Jones, the state’s former COVID-19 data manager, on $2,500 bond on Monday after she was arrested by Florida Department of Law Enforcement agents on a charge of illegally accessing a computer system.

She had turned herself in to the Leon County detention facility on Sunday night. As ...Read more

ISABEL INFANTES/AFP/TNS

‘Trump Baby' balloon is landing in a British museum

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The 20-foot balloon dubbed “Trump Baby” that floated over President Donald Trump as he traveled at home and abroad is being retired to to the Museum of London in the city where it first appeared.

The hot-air dirigible, which made its debut during a protest of Trump’s first visit to the United Kingdom in 2019, was secured by the museum ...Read more

Yuri Gripas/Yuri Gripas/TNS

Biden inaugural rehearsal evacuated amid fire near US Capitol

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Participants at a rehearsal for President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration were evacuated from the West Front of the U.S. Capitol on Monday after a fire broke out near the building, according to officials.

With tensions still high in the wake of the Jan. 6 pro-Trump attack on the Capitol, security officers rapidly whisked away the participants,...Read more

ISABEL INFANTES/TNS/TNS

Trump leaves the White House as he came in: Isolated and unpredictable

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WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump exits the White House after four years of tumult much as he arrived, with only a handful of loyalists and family members at his side.

In his final days in office, Trump found friends and political allies in short supply following the deadly Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol, when a mob of his supporters ...Read more

Kent Nishimura/Los Angeles Times/TNS

FBI seeks woman accused of taking Pelosi laptop in Capitol siege, as Washington security tightens

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WASHINGTON — A manhunt was underway Monday for a Pennsylvania woman suspected of stealing a laptop from the offices of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi during the attack on the U.S. Capitol, possibly with the intent to hand the device over to the Russian government, the FBI said.

The disclosure came as troops and police patrolled Washington in a ...Read more

KRT/TNS

Citizen Trump: The many paths ahead for the ex-president

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Most ex-presidents spend their time out of office playing golf, getting their libraries in order, making well-paid speeches, writing even more lucrative memoirs and biting their tongues about what the next guy is doing. Other than the golf, the road ahead for Donald Trump, a president who has never adhered to his office’s norms, will be unlike...Read more

Alejandro Mayorkas could face his past in latest Senate hearing

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WASHINGTON — Alejandro Mayorkas will find himself in familiar territory Tuesday when he goes before a Senate panel as President-elect Joe Biden’s nominee to lead the Department of Homeland Security.

Previously confirmed three times by the Senate for government posts, including deputy Homeland Security secretary in the Obama administration, ...Read more