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1. Impeachment 

The House is set to vote today to impeach President Trump for the second time. The single article of impeachment charges Trump with “incitement of insurrection” following last week’s Capitol breach. With the House’s Democratic majority and the votes of at least five Republican members who have said they will join the impeachment effort, the measure is certain to pass. That will make Trump the first US President to be impeached twice. Just like before, the article will then move to the Senate. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has so far been silent on its prospects in his chamber, but he has indicated he believes impeaching Trump will make it easier to rid the Republican Party of his influence. The House also voted last night to approve a resolution calling for Trump to be removed from office through the 25th Amendment, but Vice President Mike Pence, whose power is needed for such a move, has made it clear he will not invoke it.

2. Capitol riot investigation 

Officials have opened more than 170 subject files and charged over 70 cases in their expansive investigation into the Capitol riot, according to yesterday’s stunning Justice Department news conference. The acting US attorney in Washington said the scope of the crimes is “mind-blowing” and could include charges of sedition and conspiracy — serious crimes that could result in up to 20 years in prison. Other officials described rioters engaging in open-handed combat with police officers and confirmed there were pipe bombs planted outside Republican and Democratic headquarters. New threats of terrorism are also rolling in ahead of Joe Biden’s inauguration, including a plot described by a member of Congress in which thousands of armed extremists would surround the Capitol and prevent Democrats from entering. Meanwhile, YouTube has suspended President Trump’s channel, the latest social media company to discipline the President for a post it said had incited violence.

3. Coronavirus 

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has announced it will require a negative Covid-19 test from all air passengers entering the United States starting January 26. The measure is intended to curb rising coronavirus numbers, which seem to be setting new records every day. The US yesterday recorded more than 4,300 coronavirus deaths — a new daily high. Things are so bad in Ontario, Canada, the province is under a stay-at-home order, and officials have warned of a total collapse of health care systems. Japan has increased its state of emergency to seven more regions, and Ireland now has the world’s highest Covid-19 rate. How did it happen? Irish health officials say the seasonality of the virus, plus holiday gatherings, have led to inconceivable numbers of cases and deaths.

4. Abortion 

The Supreme Court has granted the Trump administration’s request to reinstate longstanding restrictions for patients seeking a drug used for abortions early in pregnancy. This was the first abortion-related case to come before new Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett, and it all but confirms abortion rights activists’ fears that she will be a deciding conservative factor in such cases. The FDA restrictions require an in-person visit with a medical professional to pick up the medication, a measure federal courts previously blocked, citing pandemic concerns. Courts have been fighting over the medication abortion rule since last summer.

5. Ireland

A landmark report out of Ireland reveals thousands of mothers and babies died in church-run institutions known as “mother and baby homes” between 1922 and 1998. Such homes were places where unwed women and girls were sent, often against their will, to deliver their children in secret. In all, around 56,000 people, sometimes as young as 12, were sent to the 18 institutions investigated in the report. One in seven of some 57,000 children born in these institutions didn’t survive long enough to leave. Irish Prime Minister Taoiseach Micheál Martin said the report “opens a window onto a deeply misogynistic culture in Ireland over several decades” and said he is planning an official state apology to survivors.

BREAKFAST BROWSE

Netflix plans to release a new movie every week of 2021

Now we don’t even need to expend energy deciding what to watch. Just take us away, Netflix!

Transparent TV screens are the cool new tech trend 

The Mega Millions jackpot is at $625 million, making it the 4th-largest prize in the lottery game’s history

Climate change is making baby sharks smaller, undernourished and exhausted

British broadcaster David Attenborough receives Covid-19 vaccine

THIS JUST IN …

Alexey Navalny says he will return to Russia

The Russian opposition politician announced he plans to return to Russia on Sunday from Germany, where he’s been recovering after being poisoned. “There was never a question for me whether to return or not, never,” Navalny tweeted today.

TODAY’S QUOTE

“The government stopped at nothing in its zeal to kill this damaged and delusional woman. Lisa Montgomery’s execution was far from justice.”

Kelley Henry, an attorney for Montgomery, who was executed by lethal injection early this morning after the Supreme Court denied a last-ditch effort by her defense team to halt the process. Montgomery was the first woman to be executed by the federal government since 1953 and was the only woman on death row.

TODAY’S NUMBER

96.3%

That was the hotel occupancy rate in Washington DC during President Trump’s inauguration in 2017. The rate for President Obama’s inauguration was 96.8%. This year, Washington hotels and tourism sources are urging people to stay home instead of flocking to the capital to observe inauguration festivities.

TODAY’S WEATHER

AND FINALLY

How the dirtiest carpets and rugs get clean 

Cleaning is a LOT more interesting and satisfying when you’re not the one who has to do it, don’t you think? (Click here to view.)

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#January #Impeachment #Capitol #riot #Covid19 #abortion #Ireland

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