National News

National News at a Glance

Posted November 3, 2018 7:41 p.m. EDT

A Nation in Turmoil Prepares to Deliver a Verdict on Trump

The tumultuous 2018 midterm campaign barreled through its final weekend as voters prepared to deliver a verdict on the first half of President Donald Trump’s term, with Republicans bracing for losses in the House and state capitals but hopeful they would prevail in Senate races in areas where Trump is popular. The president was set to storm across two more states Sunday and three Monday. More than 28 million people had already cast ballots by the end of Friday, about 10 million more than at a comparable point in the 2014 midterm elections, according to the Democratic data firm Catalist.

GOP Tactics Amplify Theme of Us Vs. Them

As Republicans scramble before Tuesday’s election to try to save their majorities in the House and Senate, many party officials and candidates like Jim Hagedorn, the nominee in Minnesota’s 1st District, have concluded that their best shot at victory is embracing the Trump political playbook of demonization. The goal — through attacks on prominent liberals, minorities and immigrants — is to stoke an us vs. them narrative about the country’s security, culture and heritage, in hopes of getting conservatives to see the election as a battle to save the nation’s future. Hagedorn is making his fourth run for the seat. Polling indicates a tight race.

Gunman in Yoga Studio Shooting Recorded Racist, Misogynistic Videos in 2014

The 40-year-old man who police said shot and killed two women at a Florida yoga studio Friday spewed racist and misogynistic vitriol in YouTube videos posted in 2014, lamenting his inability to have successful relationships with women. Scott P. Beierle of Deltona, Florida, fatally shot himself and injured five others after he entered the yoga studio in Tallahassee, Florida, shortly after 5:30 p.m. and began shooting patrons with a handgun, police said. The two women who died were both connected to Florida State University, where Beierle had been arrested at least twice in the past, one time on charges of battery against women, records show.

Minorities Are Most Vulnerable When Wildfires Strike in U.S., Study Finds

Ian Davies, a graduate student at the University of Washington, has published a new study on wildfires, and on who is most at risk. The study, which appears in the journal PLoS One this month, suggests that people of color, especially Native Americans, face more risk from wildfires than whites. But it was not because these people were living in places that were more likely to burn in a fire. Instead, the factors included things like access to a car — critical for evacuations — and whether the people spoke English fluently.

Rural America’s Own Private Flint: Well Water Too Polluted to Drink

The groundwater that once ran cool and clean from taps in the Midwestern farming town of Armenia, Wisconsin, is now laced with contaminants and fear. People refuse to drink it. Rural communities call it their own, private Flint— a water crisis tied to industrial farms and slack regulations that for years has tainted thousands of residential wells across the Midwest and beyond. Now, fears and frustration over water quality and contamination have become a potent election-year issue. President Donald Trump’s actions to loosen clean water rules have intensified a battle over regulations and environmental protections unfolding on the local level.

School District Apologizes for Costumes of Mexican Stereotypes and Border Wall Prop

The superintendent of the school district in Middleton, Idaho, apologized Friday after photos circulated showing some staff members at an elementary school wearing Halloween costumes depicting Mexican stereotypes and others posing behind a border wall adorned with President Donald Trump’s slogan “Make America Great Again.” The two photos were among several costume pictures posted to the school district’s Facebook page before being taken down. By Saturday, 14 staff members who were involved in the photos had been placed on paid administrative leave, The Associated Press reported. The pictures exacerbated a racial divide in a state that is predominantly white but where Hispanic people are the largest minority group.