Daily briefing

10 things you need to know today: July 26, 2016

Sanders strongly endorses Clinton at convention, hostage-takers kill priest at a French church, and more


Sanders forcefully endorses Clinton on convention's first night

Powerful Democrats tried to get the party's convention on track Monday after its first day was marred by a leak of internal emails that threatened party unity with signs some officials had favored Hillary Clinton over Bernie Sanders. First Lady Michelle Obama and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, a favorite of many disenchanted progressives, called for unity in support of Hillary Clinton, and against Donald Trump. Sen. Bernie Sanders urged his supporters, many of whom earlier booed any mention of Clinton, to back her as the party's presidential nominee, forcefully endorsing her and saying she "must become the next president of the United States."


Hostage-takers kill priest at French church

Two attackers stormed a Catholic church in northern France on Tuesday, fatally slitting the throat of a priest and injuring another hostage before being shot and killed by police. The attackers reportedly had taken the priest, two nuns, and several worshipers hostage. Prime Minister Manuel Valls called the attack "barbaric," tweeting, "The whole of France and all Catholics are wounded. We will stand together." The incident came as France remained on high alert after a string of terror attacks for which the Islamic State has claimed responsibility.


FBI investigates DNC email leak

The FBI said Monday that it was investigating the leak of thousands of internal Democratic National Committee emails. Hillary Clinton's campaign blamed the hacking on Russia, citing evidence uncovered by two cybersecurity firms and saying Moscow was trying to help Republican nominee Donald Trump beat Clinton in this fall's presidential election. Trump, who last week said he might not back NATO allies if Russia attacked them, called the claim a "joke." Russia denies any involvement.


Man fatally stabs 19 at Japan home for disabled

A knife-wielding attacker killed at least 19 people at a residential care facility for disabled people on Monday in the Japanese city of Sagamihara, west of Tokyo. Another 45 people were injured, several of them seriously. Police said they had arrested a suspect, who reportedly had said he believed disabled people should be "euthanized." They identified the alleged attacker as a 20-year-old former employee of the facility, and said he had walked into a police station and said, "I did it."


Turkey detains journalists as failed-coup fallout continues

Turkey on Monday issued warrants to detain 42 critical journalists on suspicion of links to the organizers of a failed July 15 coup against the government of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The government has rounded up more than 13,000 people in the military, judiciary, and other institutions in a crackdown since the uprising, which left 290 people dead. Ahmet Abakay, president of the Progressive Journalists' Association, said he feared the government was launching a "witch hunt" and treating all of its critics as coup plotters.


FiveThirtyEight says Trump would be favored to win if election were held now

Statistics guru Nate Silver's FiveThirtyEight website reported Monday that Donald Trump would be more likely than Hillary Clinton to win the presidential election if it were held today. Some polls showed Trump with a lead following his official nomination at the Republican National Convention last week. Clinton has held onto narrow leads in some surveys, but in the most recent polls Trump has edged ahead. According to FiveThirtyEight's "now-cast," Trump would have a 57 percent chance of winning the Electoral College if the vote were held today, after going from a three-percentage-point deficit in national polls overall last week to a one-point lead.


Al Gore endorses Hillary Clinton

Former Vice President Al Gore endorsed Hillary Clinton for president on Monday. He waited until the first day of the Democratic National Convention, making him one of the last big-name Democrats to get behind the party's presumptive presidential nominee. Gore, who had declined to discuss the race in the primaries, tweeted: "I am not able to attend this year's Democratic convention, but I will be voting for Hillary Clinton," citing her "qualifications and experience" and urging others to back her, too.


Fed starts meeting with no rate hike expected

Federal Reserve policy makers start a two-day meeting on Tuesday, with most analysts and investors expecting no change in interest rates as the Fed waits to see how the economy does in the wake of June's strong jobs report and the U.K.'s vote to exit the European Union. Most economists believe the Fed will avoid sending clear signals on when it plans to resume slowly raising rates after the slowdown in economic growth early this year. One economist said there's "too much volatility" to hike rates now, but the data should be more clear by September.


Michael Jordan ends silence on violence

NBA legend Michael Jordan released a rare statement Monday about police violence against the black community. Jordan said he grieved with families of African-Americans killed by police, and with those of officers targeted by gunmen. "I know their pain all too well," said Jordan, whose father was killed in a 1993 roadside robbery. Jordan said he was donating $1 million to the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, and to the International Association of Chiefs of Police's Institute for Community-Police Relations. "We need to find solutions that ensure people of color receive fair and equal treatment," he said, "AND that police officers ... are respected and supported."


Solar Impulse 2 completes last leg of trip around the world

Solar Impulse 2 landed in Abu Dhabi on Monday, marking a win for clean energy by becoming the first fuel-free plane to fly around the world. Pilot Bertrand Piccard flew the last of the trip's 17 legs, after taking turns with fellow flyer André Borschberg since the solar-powered aircraft left from the same city in March 2015. With a 236-foot wingspan, Solar Impulse 2 is wider than a Boeing 747, but it is made with carbon fiber and weighs just 5,000 pounds. Solar cells built into its wings power four motors. With a top speed of 90 miles per hour, the plane traveled 26,744 miles in 558 hours of flight time on the journey.


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U.K. official Allegra Stratton resigns
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