National News

National News at a Glance

Posted July 16, 2018 10:12 p.m. EDT

Republicans Rebuke Trump for Siding With Putin as Democrats Demand Action

Republicans rebuked President Donald Trump after Monday’s news conference with President Vladimir Putin of Russia. Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., called it “one of the most disgraceful performances by an American president in memory.” The reactions of other Republican congressional leaders ranged from disappointment to shock, but the most senior Republican leaders muted their response and avoided attaching Trump’s name to their generalized statements that they believe the intelligence agencies and still see Russia as an enemy. None pledged any action to punish Trump, but Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y, demanded action from Congress, outlining four specific actions he said Republicans should take.

Turtle Researcher’s Award Rescinded After He Uses Racy Photos of Women in Presentation

Richard Vogt, a well-known turtle researcher who was being honored last week in Rochester, New York, for his lifelong scientific achievements, ignited a controversy when he gave a presentation on river turtles that included revealing photos of women in swimsuits, including his wife. Vogt's plenary lecture Thursday contained photos of men and women doing research in water environments, including a handful of scantily clad women whose torsos were censored with blue boxes by staff at the conference. The Herpetologists’ League, a membership society for scientists in the field, rescinded Vogt’s award Friday and has formed a committee to address diversity and inclusion.

Court Orders Temporary Halt to Migrant Family Deportations

Judge Dana M. Sabraw of U.S. District Court in San Diego on Monday temporarily blocked the government from deporting any families who had been separated by immigration authorities under President Donald Trump’s zero-tolerance policy on border enforcement. The move came after lawyers for the American Civil Liberties Union said in a court filing that there are growing concerns that the Trump administration’s moves to reunify more than 2,000 migrant families by July 26 to comply with a court order could be accompanied by attempts to carry out “mass deportations." They said deportations could happen so rapidly that families might not have time to understand their legal rights.

Jail Time for Drug Relapse of Probationer Is Upheld

The top Massachusetts court unanimously ruled Monday that a judge can require defendants with substance use disorders to remain drug-free as a condition of probation and send them to jail if they relapse. The defense argued that addiction is a chronic, relapsing brain disease that compromises an individual’s ability to abstain. The prosecution maintained that many individuals have the ability to overcome addiction and can be influenced by institutional penalties and rewards. The challenge was brought by Julie A. Eldred, who had been convicted of larceny to support her heroin habit. In August 2016, a district judge gave her a year’s probation, facing up to a 30-month sentence for violating conditions, including remaining drug-free.

In New Jersey, Legal Marijuana Is So Close You Can Smell It

Gov. Philip Murphy of New Jersey campaigned heavily on a promise to legalize marijuana for recreational use, which would make New Jersey the 10th state to do so, and the first in the New York City region. Full recreational legalization was projected to generate $80 million in annual tax revenue, according to Murphy’s budget proposal. Yet more than halfway through his first year, the effort has stalled. It once looked like the plan could sail through the Legislature, which is controlled by Democrats and where it has support from Stephen Sweeney, the Senate president. But an intraparty battle over the state budget consumed Trenton’s recent attention.

Charlotte Reluctantly Says It’s Willing to Host Republican National Convention

Through hours of public debate Monday, Charlotte, North Carolina, grappled with how to live up to its values. Should it be a haven for free speech and diverse ideas, or take a stand against a strain of politics that many residents bitterly oppose? At issue: whether to host the Republican National Convention in 2020. The reluctance had little to do with the complex logistical and security challenges. It was mostly about whether a Democratic-leaning city with a carefully cultivated reputation wanted to associate itself with what Trump and many in his party now stand for. The vote in favor was just 6-5.