Daylight Saving Time Ends Sunday, But The Debates It Inspires Appear Endless

A customer tries watches at a watchmaker shop on Oct. 26, in Nantes, western France, two days before the end of Daylight Saving Time.

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If you’re having trouble deploying that famous mnemonic, let’s make this easy:

This is the one where you get one more hour of sleep.

Nov. 5 marks the first Sunday of November and, therefore, at 2 a.m. daylight saving time will cease, prompting clocks in the majority of the U.S. to “fall backward” to 1 a.m.

(Exceptions include Hawaii, American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands and the state of Arizona, with the exception to the exception being the Navajo Indian Reservation within Arizona, which does observe daylight saving time. Other exceptions include: huge swaths of the globe.)

But twice a year we are reminded that the ubiquity of this concept — originally adopted in the early part of the 20th century to harness the sunlight and warmth of longer summer days to decrease energy usage by keeping people outside longer — does not necessarily mean we have grown tired of interrogating its effects and usefulness.

For instance, some research suggests daylight saving time may do damage to our sleep cycle and therefore our health (although the “falling back” appears less potentially harmful than the “springing forward”).

What’s more, there is evidence to suggest daylight saving time takes a toll on TV ratings. As NPR’s Neda Ulaby put it: “Suddenly, it’s light outside for an extra hour. Watching TV is less appealing”

And then there’s the question of whether we need it and, if so, in what form.

Some studies suggest the goal of saving energy is misguided. One from 2011 that followed people in Indiana, (which didn’t uniformly observed daylight saving time before 2006) found that energy usage actually increased with daylight saving time. One possible explanation: Making us all spend more time awake during the hottest parts of the day may lead to more air conditioning usage.

Earlier this week, after months of deliberation, a special commission in Massachusetts charged with determining whether the state should switch to year-round daylight saving time delivered its findings. According to the AP, the group found that the plan would only reap some sort of benefit if all of the “Northeast” joined in. “If we don’t have New York, this is a no-go,” said Mass. state Rep. Paul Frost.

Others advocate for “inverting” daylight saving time to make the winter days longer, arguing this could even help combat seasonal affective disorder.

And after the “spring forward” of 2016, TV host Stephen Colbert asked for a more modest solution: Why not do it on a weekday afternoon?

“Why can’t they do it on a Wednesday at 4 o’clock?” he said to applause. “Hey look now it’s Wednesday at 5 o’clock. Time to go home.”


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Potential T-Mobile And Sprint Merger Falls Apart

A woman using a cell phone walks past T-Mobile and Sprint stores in 2010.

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After years of talks and speculation, Sprint and T-Mobile both announced on Saturday that they have ended discussions about a merger.

In a jointly-issued statement, the third (T-Mobile) and fourth (Sprint) largest wireless carriers in the U.S. explained that they were unable to reach an agreement on the terms of a deal.

“The prospect of combining with Sprint has been compelling for a variety of reasons,” said T-Mobile’s President and CEO John Legere in a statement. But, he continued, “we have been clear all along that a deal with anyone will have to result in superior long-term value for T-Mobile’s shareholders compared to our outstanding stand-alone performance and track record.”

T-Mobile has seen growth in customer numbers in recent years, which many view as a reward for pioneering more customer-friendly options such as dropping two-year contracts, the AP reports.

Although it has cut its costs, Sprint is saddled with considerable debt and has endured numerous annual losses.

For its part, Sprint, through its President and CEO Marcelo Claure, said: “While we couldn’t reach an agreement to combine our companies, we certainly recognize the benefits of scale through a potential combination. However, we have agreed that it is best to move forward on our own.”

Rumors surrounding the merger reached a fever pitch in October, when many speculated an agreement was near. But earlier this week, reports had begun to surface that talks were deteriorating.

Both carriers are still substantially smaller than the top two in the industry, Verizon and AT&T. Had T-Mobile and Sprint completed a merger, Reuters says the new company would have claimed more than 130 million subscribers.

Reuters also speculated that the atypical nature of Saturday’s joint statement may signify that the two companies are trying to preserve a relationship and sustain the possibility of an eventual return to talks.

Previous attempts have been made to court T-Mobile, but they appear to have run into trouble with federal overseers. In 2014, Sprint came close to buying the company, but was reportedly scared off by the threat of regulatory action. AT&T had flirted with the idea of purchasing T-Mobile in 2011, but backed off after both the Justice Department and the Federal Communications Commission expressed their displeasure with the potential deal.

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Massachusetts Becomes First State To Ban Bump Stocks After Las Vegas Massacre

A bump stock device, (left) that fits on a semi-automatic rifle to increase the firing speed.

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Republican Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito of Massachusetts signed a bill Friday, approved one day earlier by the state’s Democratic legislature, outlawing so-called bump stocks, accessories that allow semi-automatic firearms to mimic the rapid firing action of machine guns.

The bill’s passage makes Massachusetts the first state to enact a ban on bump stocks in the wake of last month’s shooting in Las Vegas, the deadliest in modern American history.

Authorities say the gunman responsible for the massacre, which left 58 people dead and hundreds wounded, used bump stocks to allow his semi-automatic weapons to rain down considerably more bullets on the unsuspecting crowd during the attack.

Bump stocks attach to semi-automatic weapons and enable sustained firing by using the force of the weapon’s kickback to bounce the firearm against the shooter’s trigger finger over and over.

The newly approved Mass. ban provides a 90-day grace period for bump stock owners to discard their devices.

The ban was approved with relative ease and little fanfare Friday, when Polito, acting in place of Gov. Charlie Baker who was away on vacation, signed an appropriations bill to which the bump stock ban had been added. The state legislature had passed the amended spending measure on Thursday.

In the days after the Las Vegas shooting, Baker, who is a Republican, had made clear he would support outlawing bump stocks, saying “if that were to pass tomorrow we would sign it.”

The Gun Owners’ Action League of Massachusetts, which is affiliated with the National Rifle Association and appeared to be the most vocal opponent of the new ban, spent Friday beseeching its members to call the governor’s office in an ultimately unsuccessful attempt to have the bump stock provision vetoed.


— GOAL (@GOALupdate) November 3, 2017

The Giffords Law Center To Prevent Gun Violence, an organization founded by former U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, who was shot and wounded at a public event in Arizona in 2011, celebrated the ban’s approval on Friday, saying in a statement they hoped other states would “follow Massachusetts’ lead.”

Massachusetts is, however, not the first state with a bump stock ban on the books. Longstanding gun regulations in California already include punishments aimed at any device that “allows the firearm to discharge two or more shots in a burst by activating the device.”

Following the tragedy in Las Vegas, in what appeared to be an unusual display of bipartisanship, Democrats, Republicans and even the NRA expressed support for some kind of regulation for bump stocks.

Multiple bills were introduced in Congress, with one in the House garnering more than two dozen signatures. But legislative momentum has stalled, as NPR’s Geoff Bennett reported in October:

“The NRA is calling for a regulatory fix for bump stocks rather than legislation. And House Speaker Paul Ryan, who first signaled an openness to considering congressional action, is now siding with the NRA. Ryan and the NRA say the best approach is for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, or the ATF, to regulate the devices.”

But — complicating matters further — regulating bump stocks is something many view as outside of the purview of the ATF. As NPR’s Ryan Lucas explained, U.S. law gives the ATF authority to regulate machine guns, which are defined as any weapon that can shoot more than one bullet “by single function of the trigger.”

“It is that last phrase — “by a single function of the trigger” — that is key to understanding ATF decisions, said Rick Vasquez, a firearm consultant and former acting chief of the ATF’s firearms technology branch, which conducts classification reviews.

“If a gun fires more than one bullet with a single pull of the trigger, then by law it is considered a machine gun. If, however, a gun fires only one bullet for each pull of the trigger, it is not.

“Bump stocks, Vasquez said, enable an accelerated shooting rate, but the way they are designed ensures that each pull of the trigger only unleashes one bullet. That means, he said, that they don’t qualify as machine guns under current law.”

A recent poll conducted by NPR showed “88 percent of Democrats, 77 percent of Republicans, and 82 percent of independents favor banning bump stocks. But while three-quarters of Democrats ‘strongly favor’ this kind of ban, only around half of Republicans and independents do.”

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Paintings by Indian elephant auctioned off in Hungary

BUDAPEST (Reuters) – Paintings created by an Indian elephant who enjoys wielding a brush were auctioned off by a Hungarian traveling circus on Saturday.

Sandra, a 42-year-old elephant, paints with her trunk in a Hungarian travelling circus of Florian Richter Circus in Budapest, Hungary November 2, 2017. Picture taken November 2, 2017. REUTERS/Laszlo Balogh

Three of 42-year-old elephant Sandra’s abstract canvasses, with colored lines flowing across them resembling rivers, fetched about 40,000 forints ($150) each.

A painting depicting Sandra herself, done by a Hungarian painter, sold for 260,000 forints. The money will be offered to an elephant sanctuary in Malaysia.

Sandra paints with her trunk purely for pleasure, according to her owner and trainer Florian Richter, a horse acrobat and circus director.

Sandra, a 42-year-old elephant, poses for a photo with Hungarian circus fans who bought her painting in the Florian Richter Circus in Budapest, Hungary November 4, 2017. REUTERS/Laszlo Balogh NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVES

Sandra, who was already well practised in a circus trick involving a shaving brush, was given a paintbrush and she quickly adapted her skills to the canvas.

Richter said that unlike many elephants in Thailand that are thought to be forced to paint, Sandra does it by herself when she is in the mood.

Slideshow (2 Images)

“I only help her with changing the brushes and putting them into paints but she does the rest by herself more or less. I praise her by saying ‘oh this is really good, or not so good’,” Richter said. “We have been together for 40 years so this is a family connection.”

Sandra arrived as a baby elephant at the circus where Richter grew up, as a seventh generation member of an acrobat family.

($1 = 267.5200 forints)

Reporting by Krisztina Fenyo, Writing by Krisztina Than; Editing by Stephen Powell

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Lebanon's Prime Minister Resigns, Fears Plot On His Life

Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri, center, in October arriving for a mass funeral of 10 Lebanese soldiers at the Lebanese Defense Ministry.

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Lebanese prime minister Saad Hariri announced his resignation Saturday, accusing his adversaries of political interference and citing a fear that he, like his father before him, would become the target of an assassination plot.

Hariri disclosed his surprise decision during a televised speech from Riyadh, the capital of Saudi Arabia, as NPR’s Peter Kenyon reported to our newscast unit.

“We are living in a climate similar to the atmosphere that prevailed before the assassination of martyr Rafik al-Hariri,” he said Saturday, referencing his late father who was killed in 2005, according to Reuters. “I have sensed what is being plotted covertly to target my life.”

Hariri became Lebanon’s prime minister late 2016 as part of a political deal that allowed his rival Hezbollah, the Shiite Muslim group backed by Iran, to assume the presidency and other roles within the government.

As he resigned on television Saturday, Hariri lashed out at Iran for meddling in the affairs of “the Arab world,” saying that Lebanon would “rise as it had done in the past” and “cut off the hands that wickedly extend into it.”

Lebanon is politically divided, with one camp supporting Hariri, a Sunni Muslim closely allied with regional Sunni powerhouse Saudi Arabia, and the other favoring Hezbollah, which has controversially deployed many of its fighters into neighboring Syria to support President Bashar Assad.

Lebanon has mostly managed to wall itself off from Syria’s strife, with a flourishing tourism industry, as NPR’s Ruth Sherlock reported recently.

Hariri’s speech came during his second visit this week to Saudi Arabia, which is embroiled in proxy conflicts with Iran, including Yemen’s deadly civil war.

Lebanon’s president, Michel Aoun of Hezbollah, said he spoke with Hariri by phone after the speech Saturday and, as the AP reports, he planned to work out the terms of the resignation following Hariri’s return from Saudi Arabia.

Hariri previously served as Lebanon’s prime minister from 2009 through 2011.

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3 Ways To Think About What Mattered In The Deluge Of Political News This Week

Robert Mueller, special counsel in charge of the investigation into Russian connections with the Trump campaign, rocked the political world charging three Trump campaign officials this week.

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The week started with “legal shock and awe,” as Carrie Johnson, NPR’s Justice correspondent described it on the PBS NewsHour.

It’s hard to believe it was only Monday that indictments were handed down stemming from special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into the Trump campaign and Russia.

There was lots of fallout from that. But it was hardly all that happened this week — there was a terrorist attack that killed eight people in New York, a major tax bill unveiled that could affect millions of Americans and party division was again highlighted on the Democratic side.

That’s life in the deluge of news during the Trump presidency.

Here are three ways to think about everything that went down (and a day-by-day recap below that):

1. The Russia connection got closer

Mueller and his team of investigators rocked the political world and the White House. Mueller and the court documents, especially the guilty plea from George Papadopoulos, a Trump campaign foreign policy adviser, wound up revealing a few things:

  • Russia was trying to infiltrate the Trump campaign, and it succeeded, at least to an extent;
  • Papadopoulous was “proactive” in cooperating with the the feds. And given that he was arrested in July at Dulles Airport (without any leaks) and a plea wasn’t officially released until October means he may have been helping agents take measures to find out more information, like, for example, by possibly wearing a wire.
  • Other Trump campaign officials knew about Papadopoulos’ contacts with Russia, including the president, the attorney general and Sam Clovis, a former co-chairman of the campaign. As a result of the finding, Clovis withdrew for a job in the Trump administration;
  • Mueller knows more than the public or reporters do. This is likely just the beginning, as the circle gets tighter, and it is becoming apparent that Mueller has cooperating witnesses.

This Russia connection is a big problem for Trump. He had taken to calling it a “witch hunt,” but methodically gathered evidence is going to be difficult to overcome with spin and deflection — despite Trump’s, and conservative media’s, best efforts this week in pointing again to Hillary Clinton.

And despite an economy that seems to be chugging along and a jobs report that showed the lowest unemployment rate in 17 years, Trump hit record low approval ratings this week in Gallup and the NBC/Wall Street Journal polls.

2. Trump’s terror attack comments again undermine a critical democratic institution

President Trump speaks during a Cabinet meeting and remarks hotly that he wants changes to U.S. immigration laws to possibly prevent future attacks.

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The terrorist attack that appears to be ISIS-inspired, led to Trump again showing his hard-line nationalist side when it comes to immigration. The suspect came to the United States in 2010 under the diversity visa lottery program. Trump called for its elimination, blamed Democratic Senate leader Chuck Schumer for its implementation and lashed out again at the American judicial system.

Many questioned Trump’s response about U.S. courts, because, as the ostensible chief law enforcement officer in America, his talk could make prosecutors’ jobs more difficult. The American judicial system is something past presidents held up as a shining example of how free nation-states operate — that it shows the world how fair and just America is, unlike places that have fewer freedoms.

Trump also flirted with the idea of sending the suspect to the prison at Guantanamo Bay.

But a couple of fact checks: First, Trump’s attack on Schumer was overwrought. Yes, Schumer co-sponsored the legislation that introduced the program in 1990, but it was a bipartisan effort and signed by a Republican president, George H.W. Bush, into law. And during the Senate effort to overhaul the immigration system in 2013, Schumer proposed getting rid of the program. (See NPR’s Brian Naylor’s fact check on this from earlier this week.)

Second, on Guantanamo, as NPR’s Ryan Lucas noted in the NPR Politics Podcast this week, no one arrested in the United States has ever been sent to Gitmo. Sure, that kind of talk makes Trump look tough with his base, but it doesn’t align with the facts. The U.S. court system has done a much more efficient job of prosecuting terrorism suspects than the trial process at Guantanamo.

But, in the end, it doesn’t appear that sending the suspect to Guantanamo was something under real consideration, anyway, since the Justice Department has filed charges against him. It was a question from a reporter that Trump simply reacted to. This is what Trump does, and he proves it over and over again — he shoots from the lip, says things that could have major consequences, but might not really mean them.

3. Houses divided cannot stand — and as Republicans are hoping the new tax bill can keep them together, Democrats’ rift was exposed as pretty raw

Hillary Clinton listens as Bernie Sanders makes remarks during a unity rally in July 2016 in New Hampshire.

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Trump and the GOP are hoping to paper over their internal divisions with something they hope they can all get behind — tax cuts. After failing to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, the consequences couldn’t be greater for Republicans. If it becomes law, they will finally find a pathway to unify and pass big, important legislation, something that has been elusive thus far in the Trump presidency.

Make no mistake: the divisions are there, and this bill’s fate could well be an inflection point for the party’s leaders and their relationship with this president. If it doesn’t pass, what then?

Meanwhile, Democrats’ divisions were laid bare with the publishing of a book excerpt from former acting Democratic National Chairwoman Donna Brazile. She alleges the party was in cahoots with the Clinton campaign, not just because it favored her, but because it owed them financially.

The party was literally financially reliant on the Clinton campaign, was being put on a budget by the campaign and Clinton effectively had operational control over the party. A few takeaways:

  • Some of the details that emerged were already known; Candidates all have the option to sign onto joint fundraising agreements; Sanders wasn’t and isn’t a Democrat.
  • More importantly — whether a more neutral DNC would have really changed the outcome is hardly a certainty. How much does a party really effect a primary? It can agree to hold more debates; it can help shape a media narrative, but people still need to vote — and many more voted for Clinton than Sanders.
  • All that’s true, but a candidate who is not yet the nominee is not supposed to have operational control over a party. The party was giving the impression that it was neutral, when evidently it was not. The charge from challengers was that Clinton was being treated as the nominee and being coronated. That appears to be the case from party insiders, who decide the nomination. That kind of appearance can only serve to further divide the party.

What was revealed only reinforces for the left that there was collusion — against them. It’s only going to harden and deepen the fissures in the party that is trying to oust Republicans in Congress next year and President Trump two years after that.

If the party doesn’t shape up, create a message and figure out — most importantly — how to unify its divergent factions, it’s going to be hard to mount a campaign to defeat a sitting president with a locked-in base.

Here’s a recap of the week. Yes, all this happened:


Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort leaves federal court following a hearing Thursday. Manafort and his former business partner Richard Gates pleaded not guilty to a 12-charge indictment.

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—Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and his deputy, Rick Gates, are indicted for conspiring against the the United States, money laundering and more. These charges stem from Manafort’s work overseas and before he joined the Trump campaign.

—But then, two hours later, another set of court documents dropped. And this very much had to do with Russia. A former foreign-policy adviser to Trump’s campaign, George Papadopoulos, who Trump once called “excellent,” pleads guilty to lying about contacts he had Russians. with people with ties to the Kremlin.

—Trump’s ban on transgender people serving in the military is blocked in court.

—White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders defends President Trump, claiming “no evidence of Trump-Russia collusion, and nothing in the indictment today changes that at all.” —Sanders also begins with a multiple-minute Internet meme that was supposed to be an allegory about taxes involving journalists drinking in a bar and attempting to split a bar tab based on income.

—White House Chief of Staff John Kelly says in an interview with Fox Monday night that he would not apologize for false information he recounted about a Democratic congresswoman — and then made news defending Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee and saying that the Civil War, which was fought over slavery, could have been prevented by a compromise. —Trump hits all-time low in approval in Gallup and NBC/WSJ —Clovis identified as the “supervisor” mentioned in the Papadopolous documents.


—After not tweeting since before the Papadopoulos documents were released Monday morning, Trump tweets that he was merely a “low level volunteer” and that people should “check the DEMS!” Former White House press secretary Sean Spicer earlier this year dismissed Manafort’s relevance during the campaign, saying he played a “minor role.”

In reality, while Manafort was only on the campaign for a relatively short time, he played a critical role getting Trump nominated. He was in charge of the delegate process and fully in charge of the convention, for example, working to depress potential floor rebellions over Trump’s nomination.

— Trump Organization attorney Michael Caputo on CNN claims Papadopoulos was just a “coffee boy.” “If he was going to wear a wire, all we’d know now is whether he prefers a caramel macchiato over a regular American coffee in conversations with his barista,” Caputo said. “He had nothing to do with the campaign.”

—There was growing speculation that Papadopoulos may have worn a wire because it was revealed that he had been taking a “proactive” role in helping the feds after being arrested — quietly and without leaks — in July until his guilty plea in early October.

—This came a day after a day after Trump tweeted “Great job by Michael Caputo on @foxandfriends.”

Great job by MichaelCaputo on @foxandfriends.

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 30, 2017

Trump is known to evaluate his associates’ prowess on cable news, then bring them closer into his circle or put them out there more (or pull them back). (See Anthony Scaramucci, Sean Spicer, Kellyanne Conway, etc.)

—Later, Sanders takes to the podium in the briefing room to again defend the president and campaign but also Kelly. She said it had been historically proven that compromises could have ended the Civil War. It was unclear if that involved slavery.

—Clovis’ attorneys put out a statement acknowledging he is the “supervisor.” Sanders says the president sees no reason at this time to pull Clovis’ nomination as the chief scientist for the USDA. Clovis is not a scientist.

—NBC reports that the FBI “grilled” Clovis last week. In an email to Papadopolous, Clovis seemed to encourage his meeting with Russians and told him it was “great work.”

—Apparent ISIS-inspired terrorist attack in New York, where eight cyclists are killed.

—White House Communications Director Hope Hicks to meet with federal investigators next week after Trump’s Asia trip. Others to be interviewed as early as this week.

—Officials from Facebook, Twitter and Google tell a congressional panel that the Russian interference campaign was broader than first known.

—House GOP pushes back tax overhaul to Thursday; it was supposed to be unveiled Wednesday. Sticking points center on which deductions can be cut, so they can pay for it. They’re still promising a markup Monday.

—More court documents released on Manafort. They show he had at least three passports and used fake names to travel to several countries. Manafort worked for free for the Trump campaign. He came on the recommendation of Tom Barrack, a long-time Trump friend who employed Gates. This raises questions about the Trump campaign’s vetting.

—Lost in the shuffle, but an amazing read: former House Speaker John Boehner’s interview with Politico, in which he very candidly shares his thoughts on a host of things and people.


—Trump points blame at Schumer for New York attack.

The terrorist came into our country through what is called the “Diversity Visa Lottery Program,” a Chuck Schumer beauty. I want merit based.

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 1, 2017

“Senator Chuck Schumer helping to import Europes problems” said Col.Tony Shaffer. We will stop this craziness! @foxandfriends

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 1, 2017

Schumer responds that he guesses it’s not too soon to politicize a tragedy. The White House had said after the Las Vegas shooting that it was “premature” to talk about guns.

—Arizona Republican Sen. Jeff Flake comes to Schumer’s defense on Twitter.

Actually, the Gang of 8, including @SenSchumer, did away with the Diversity Visa Program as part of broader reforms. I know, I was there

— Jeff Flake (@JeffFlake) November 1, 2017

—Federal officials confirm that the alleged driver in the attack came to the country via the diversity visa lottery program.

—Trump calls for an end to the program and then calls the U.S. justice system a “laughing stock.” Instead, he says he wants “quick” and “strong justice.” “What we have right now is a joke, and it is a laughing stock, and no wonder so much of this stuff takes place,” Trump told reporters during a Cabinet meeting at the White House. He adds in response to a question from a reporter, “Send him to Gitmo? I would certainly consider that, yes.”

—The White House later says it considers the suspect an “enemy combatant.” The Guantanamo and enemy combatant discussion raises the question of whether that would be allowed. First, the driver had a Green Card. Georgetown Law writes that “permanent legal residents are protected under the laws of the United States and all local jurisdictions.” Further, “due process” is guaranteed to all persons, it writes because of the 14th Amendment, “which provides guarantees for ‘any person.'”

—Some Trump allies are growing very concerned about the Mueller investigation. Former Trump campaign aide Sam Nunberg told Vanity Fair, for example:

“Here’s what Manafort’s indictment tells me: Mueller is going to go over every financial dealing of Jared Kushner and the Trump Organization. Trump is at 33 percent in Gallup. You can’t go any lower. He’s f——-.”

—Congress releases social media posts that were bought and paid for by Russian accounts.

—Republican Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina, the only black Republican senator in Congress, responds to Kelly’s comments about a civil war “compromise.” “There was no compromise to make — only a choice between continuing slavery and ending it,” Scott said.

—After hours earlier questioning the efficacy of the U.S. judicial system, Trump went to bed tweeting that he wanted the “DEATH PENALTY” for the New York truck attacker. He also seemed to give away a previously unknown detail, that the suspect asked to hang the ISIS flag from his hospital bed.

…There is also something appropriate about keeping him in the home of the horrible crime he committed. Should move fast. DEATH PENALTY!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 2, 2017

The death penalty is not an option in New York State. It is outlawed there.


—Trump tweets again about “DEATH PENALTY.”

NYC terrorist was happy as he asked to hang ISIS flag in his hospital room. He killed 8 people, badly injured 12. SHOULD GET DEATH PENALTY!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 2, 2017

—Republicans in the House unveil their tax overhaul.

—Trump announces his pick to be the new Federal Reserve chairman, a fed governor, Jerome Williams. Williams, a lawyer by training and a former Wall St. investment banker, would be the first fed chair in 40 years not to have his doctorate in economics.

—Clovis withdraws from the Trump administration post he had been nominated for.

—Trump says he met with Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley earlier in the day and wants what he calls “immigration reform” after the New York attack. Trump called on Congress to immediately terminate the visa lottery program. “It’s a disaster for our country,” Trump said, adding, “The people put in that lottery are not that country’s finest.” He also again called for an end to “chain migration.”

—It’s revealed that Jeff Sessions may have known more about campaign aides’ ties to Russia. Both Papadopoulos and another foreign-policy adviser Carter Page both told Sessions about Russian contacts. Page testified behind closed doors on Capitol Hill that he told Sessions he was traveling to Russia to give a speech at a university. Page says he told sessions this in passing at a dinner. Papadopoulos, NBC reports, asked Sessions if he should try to use his Russian contacts to try to set up a meeting between Trump and Vladimir Putin. Sessions reportedly told him not to do so. But there will be questions for Sessions, because he told Congress earlier this year that he had no recollection of any contacts between Russia and the campaign.

—Democrats’ party divisions are ripped open. Brazile’s book excerpt is released. Trump tweets about it:

Donna Brazile just stated the DNC RIGGED the system to illegally steal the Primary from Bernie Sanders. Bought and paid for by Crooked H….

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 3, 2017

The liberal group Democracy for America says it’s pulling support from Virginia Democratic gubernatorial candidate Ralph Northam, just days before Tuesday’s election. They accuse him of running a “racist” campaign after he declares he would not support “sanctuary cities.”

Howard Dean, a founding member of the organization and whose brother runs it, blasts the decision as “incredibly stupid.”

I Hope this is inaccurate because it is an incredibly stupid thing to say and deeply discredits the organization which I founded.

— Howard Dean (@GovHowardDean) November 3, 2017

Hillary Clinton appears on The Daily Show and declared again, “I’m not going anywhere.”

Elizabeth Warren adds fuel to the fire, saying, “Yes,” she believes the Democratic primary was “rigged” in favor of Clinton.

—Trump expresses disappointment that he can’t direct the Justice Department or FBI in an interview on conservative talk radio:

“The saddest thing is that because I’m the President of the United States, I am not supposed to be involved with the Justice Department,” Trump said on the Larry O’Connor show, a conservative talk-radio show. “I am not supposed to be involved with the FBI. … “I look at what’s happening with the Justice Department. Well, why aren’t they going after Hillary Clinton with her emails and with her, the dossier? I’m very unhappy with it that the Justice Department isn’t going. I am not supposed to be doing the kind of things that I would love to be doing. And I am very frustrated by it.”

—Trump later goes on Fox and is interviewed by Laura Ingraham and seems to downplay some in his campaign, including his son, being willing to work with a foreign government to try and get “dirt” on his opponent:

“Well, she [Clinton] talked about oppo research is wonderful. Oppo research. But not when it comes to us. OK? Oppo research for us, of course, is no good. No.”

—The White House approves a climate report that states unequivocally that climate change is happening — and that humans are the cause. Ironically, the president has previously said climate change is a “hoax” and many in his administration deny humans are to blame.

—Trump’s Twitter account goes down briefly. Twitter blames it on an employee and says they’re taking “safeguards” so that it doesn’t happen in the future.”


Attorney General Jeff Sessions testifies on Capitol Hill in June. He said he was unaware of any contacts between the Trump campaign and Russia, but court documents released this week show otherwise.

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—It’s revealed that Papadopolous had multiple contacts with Russians and that he bragged about them in front of Trump and Sessions. Trump and Sessions have both denied knowing about anything about anyone in the campaign having contact with Russia. Trump said so before reporters in February. Sessions did so multiple times in congressional testimony. Trump tells reporters he doesn’t “remember much” about his conversation with Papadopolous and calls the meeting “unimportant”:

“Took place along time ago. I don’t remember much about it. All I can tell you is this. There was no collusion. There was no nothing. It’s a disgrace, frankly, that they continue. You ought to look at Hillary Clinton.”

—Trump tweets encouragement of the FBI/DOJ to look into Democrats “rigging” the primary.

Pocahontas just stated that the Democrats, lead by the legendary Crooked Hillary Clinton, rigged the Primaries! Lets go FBI & Justice Dept.

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 3, 2017

—Trump leaves for Asia for APEC meeting, as North Korea threat looms, and he tore up the Trans-Pacific Trade partnership and has questioned the trade deal with South Korea.

—Jobs report comes out, and it shows job gains of 261,000 and unemployment ticking down to 4.1 percent, the lowest level since 2000. A day earlier, in a statement about the tax bill, the president took credit for strong economic numbers:

“The policies of my Administration have already helped to drive the stock market to all-time highs and the unemployment rate to a 16-year low.”

Trump adds that tax cuts would be “the rocket fuel our economy needs to soar higher than ever before.”

—NPR’s Scott Detrow discovers a second financial agreement in 2015 between the DNC and the Clinton campaign.

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Fresh Air Weekend: Actor Jonathan Groff; Humorist John Hodgman

Jonathan Groff plays an FBI agent and criminal profiler in the Netflix series Mindhunter.

Patrick Harbron/Netflix

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Patrick Harbron/Netflix

Fresh Air Weekend highlights some of the best interviews and reviews from past weeks, and new program elements specially paced for weekends. Our weekend show emphasizes interviews with writers, filmmakers, actors and musicians, and often includes excerpts from live in-studio concerts. This week:

‘Mindhunter’ Actor Jonathan Groff On His Most Life-Altering Roles: Groff says his work on HBO’s Looking changed his life: “It’s one of my favorite things I’ve worked on, the most personal thing I’ve worked on.” He now stars in the Netflix series Mindhunter.

Tom Hanks And Matthew Weiner Cross Over Into The World Of Fiction: The actor and the Mad Men creator each recently published a book: Hanks’ Uncommon Type is a short story collection and Weiner’s Heather, The Totality is a novella about two upper-class New Yorkers.

John Hodgman Reflects On His Mother’s Death And White Privilege: Hodgman says, “The biggest privilege of white privilege is the ability to turn off race and pretend that it is not an issue.” His new book is called Vacationland.

You can listen to the original interviews here:

‘Mindhunter’ Actor Jonathan Groff On His Most Life-Altering Roles

Tom Hanks And Matthew Weiner Cross Over Into The World Of Fiction

John Hodgman Reflects On His Mother’s Death And White Privilege

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