May 20, 2014

A new study concludes that white husbands and wives are more similar to each other genetically than they are to random individuals, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Scientists investigated the statistical likelihood that a person will marry someone with a similar genotype, gathering data from 9,429 non-Hispanic white individuals. Researchers also examined 1.7 million single nucleotide polymorphisms (points where the DNA sequences of individuals diverge). They discovered that while the married couples were more genetically similar than randomly generated pairs, that likeness "was just one-third the magnitude of educational similarity between spouses," notes the Times' Monte Morin.

The authors of the study would like to conduct research with non-whites as well, calling their findings only "the first step" in understanding how genetics influence marriages. Their findings were published Monday in the journal PNAS. Catherine Garcia

12:25 p.m. ET
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Tired of stumbling off curbs or bumping into other pedestrians while consulting a map on your smartphone? When you wear Lechal Insoles ($100), a gentle vibration in one shoe or the other will tell you when and in which direction to turn. Just enter your destination into Lechal's GPS app, and let your phone do the navigating. The batteries for the vibrating pads last about 15 days on a charge. Besides steering you from place to place, the insoles can also act as activity trackers, monitoring distances traveled, steps taken, calories burned, and more. The Week Staff

12:14 p.m. ET
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On Monday, the World Health Organization released a list of bacteria that it has identified as humans' biggest cause for concern. The list, which includes 12 "priority pathogens" that have "built-in abilities to find new ways to resist treatment," is intended as a nudge for researchers to develop new antibiotics — and fast.

"Antibiotic resistance is growing, and we are fast running out of treatment options," said Marie-Paule Kieny, the WHO's assistant director-general for health systems and innovation. "If we leave it to market forces alone, the new antibiotics we most urgently need are not going to be developed in time."

The list, which you can see here, divides the 12 bacteria into three categories of urgency: "critical," "high," and "medium." But all of the listed pathogens present "an enormous threat to human health," The New York Times noted. The "critical" group includes three "multidrug-resistant bacteria that pose a particular threat in hospitals, nursing homes, and other care facilities," Reuters reported.

"We're at a tipping point," said Jean Patel, a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention specialist who consulted with WHO on the list. "We can take action and turn the tide — or lose the drugs we have." Becca Stanek

11:54 a.m. ET
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President Trump on Monday told health care executives that "I haven't called Russia in 10 years," despite the fact that he spoke with Russian President Vladimir Putin on the phone just 30 days ago. Trump visited Moscow as recently as 2013.

Trump's comment came in response to questions shouted to him by the press about whether there should be a special prosecutor to investigate the influence of Russia on the 2016 presidential election. The pool report claims that Trump "did not respond to the question immediately, but as the pool was mostly out, he mouthed the word 'no' to those at the table." Jeva Lange

11:38 a.m. ET
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The head of the NYPD sergeants union and the New York police commissioner are locked in a very public debate about whether or not the city will follow President Trump's deportation policies, the New York Daily News reports.

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has held a firm stance against the Trump administration's immigration policies, warning "the stroke of a pen in Washington does not change the people of New York City or our values. It does not change how this city government protects its people." Police Commissioner James O'Neill added in a memo last week that "it is critical that everyone who comes into contact with the NYPD, regardless of their immigration status, be able to identify themselves or seek assistance without hesitation, anxiety, or fear."

But Ed Mullins, the president of the Sergeants Benevolent Association, told AM 970 on Sunday that "it's almost like the world is upside-down right now. The people who are committing crimes, they don't belong in the country."

"Make no mistake about it, the members of law enforcement in the NYPD want to cooperate with ICE," Mullins added. "I speak to cops every day — they want to cooperate with ICE, they want to work with fellow law enforcement agents."

A spokesperson for O'Neill hit back at Mullins, saying, "Police Commissioner O'Neill does not need a lesson on morality from Sgt. Ed Mullins, but rather Mullins could use some education about what really drives crime in New York City and how to best deal with it."

The spokesperson went on to say: "The Department has clearly established policies and practices relating to the processing of ICE detainer requests. With these fair and reasonable procedures in place, the NYPD has continued to keep New York the safest large city in America." Read the full details of the feud at the New York Daily News. Jeva Lange

11:26 a.m. ET

President Donald Trump slammed the American military Monday, complaining the U.S. doesn't "fight to win."

"Win. We have to win. We have to start winning wars again," Trump said. "I have to say, when I was young, in high school and college, everybody used to say that we never lost a war. 'We never lost a war.' You remember."

"And now we never win a war," Trump added. "We never win. And we don't fight to win."

Trump added that the war in the Middle East has gone "nowhere. Actually, if you think about it, we're less than nowhere."

"Soldiers serving [abroad] and at home right now heard this," pointed out MTV News' Jamil Smith.

President Trump attended a military academy, but never served in the armed forces. He received a total of five draft deferments in the Vietnam War, including one for bone spurs in his heels, The New York Times reports. Trump has been previously criticized for being insensitive to the sacrifices made by service members and their families for the country: "You have sacrificed nothing and no one," said Khizr Khan, the father of an American soldier killed in Iraq, at the Democratic National Convention last year. Jeva Lange

11:01 a.m. ET

President Trump admitted he was floored by how "complicated" the health-care system is when speaking Monday at the National Governors Association meeting at the White House. "It's an unbelievably complex subject," Trump said, while outlining the plans his administration has come up with to repeal and replace ObamaCare. "Nobody knew that health care could be so complicated."

Trump explained that his team has come up with a solution that gives states "the flexibility they need to make the end result really, really good for them." But "statutorily," Trump explained, and because lawmakers "have to know what the health care is going to cost," the president said health care has to get sorted out before he can go ahead with his tax cut plan — which he promised will be "major, it's going to be simple, and the whole tax plan is wonderful." "It's actually, tax cutting has never been that easy, but it's a tiny little ant compared to what we're talking about with ObamaCare," Trump said, deeming the Affordable Care Act a "failed disaster" that's "no longer affordable."

Watch Trump break down the complexities of health care below. Becca Stanek

9:46 a.m. ET

As President Trump's relationship with the media grows increasingly combative, former President George W. Bush on Monday highlighted just how important media is to democracy. When asked during an interview on NBC's Today whether he ever considered the media the enemy of the American people — a label Trump recently assigned it — Bush was quick to point out the media's merits. "We need an independent media to hold people like me to account," Bush said. "Power can be very addictive and it can be corrosive, and it's important for the media to call to account people who abuse their power."

In Trump's first month in office, he has repeatedly attacked the media, tweeting criticisms of the "failing" New York Times, deeming CNN "fake news," and accusing news outlets of making up sources. On Friday, several major media outlets were barred from entering an informal briefing with White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer, and on Saturday, Trump announced he would not attend the annual White House Correspondents' Dinner, becoming the first president to miss the dinner since former President Ronald Reagan was sidelined by an assassination attempt in 1981.

Bush, after recalling the time he tried to convince Russian President Vladimir Putin of the importance of a free press, noted the U.S. needs to take the advice it doles out. "It's kind of hard to tell others to have an independent free press when we're not willing to have one ourselves," Bush said.

Catch the interview below. Becca Stanek

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