10 things you need to know today: October 30, 2016
Comey announced new Clinton emails against DOJ advice and without a warrant, Senate Democrats demand answers from Comey, and more
Comey announced new Clinton emails against DOJ advice and without a warrant
FBI Director James Comey diverged from Justice Department protocol when he sent a letter to Congress announcing the discovery of more emails "pertinent" to the previous investigation of Hillary Clinton's private email server. The New Yorker reported Saturday Attorney General Loretta Lynch advised Comey to maintain the bureau's "longstanding practice of not commenting on ongoing investigations, and not taking any action that could influence the outcome of an election." However, Comey insisted he had promised members of Congress he would keep them updated, and that the election made it more important to inform the public. Further complicating matters, Yahoo News reported Saturday night the FBI had yet to obtain a warrant permitting the agency to read the emails Comey mentioned, suggesting the announcement was made without knowledge of their content.
Senate Democrats demand answers from Comey
Four ranking Senate Democrats sent a letter Saturday to FBI Director James Comey and Attorney General Loretta Lynch demanding the FBI promptly "dispel any misleading impressions about the emails" that led Comey to reopen the investigation into Hillary Clinton's private email server. "Just ten days before a presidential election, the American people deserve more disclosure," the letter said. "Anything less would be irresponsible and a disservice to the American people." Clinton herself lobbed a similar criticism at Comey at a rally in Florida Saturday. "It's pretty strange to put something like that out with such little information right before an election," she said. "In fact, it's not just strange, it's unprecedented and it is deeply troubling."
Biden: Comey is 'tough' but 'a straight guy'
Vice President Joe Biden on Saturday proved an unexpected defender of James Comey from charges that the FBI director is misusing his position to influence the presidential election by reopening the investigation into Hillary Clinton's email servers. "I've found [Comey] to be a straight guy," Biden said in an interview with CNN's Michael Smerconish. "He's a tough guy. He's a Republican, but he's always been straight and I'm confident that this will turn out fine." Biden urged Comey to release the emails quickly and also weighed in on related stories, including Anthony Weiner ("I'm not a big fan") and Donald Trump ("fully unqualified" to be president).
Clinton just 2 points ahead of Trump in new national poll
Hillary Clinton's lead over Donald Trump drastically diminished in a new ABC News/Washington Post national poll released Saturday (but taken before FBI Director James Comey's Friday announcement about reopening the Clinton email investigation). Clinton is now ahead of Trump by just 2 points among likely voters, 47 percent to 45 percent, and within the poll's margin of error of plus or minus 3 percentage points. In an average of polls taken over four days released last weekend, Clinton led by 12 points, 50 percent to 38 percent; she still leads by 15 points among early voters.
Trump supporter arrested over allegation she voted twice
A Donald Trump supporter in Iowa was arrested Thursday over charges she voted twice in the presidential election. Terri Lynn Rote, a 55-year-old from Des Moines, Iowa, reportedly cast one early voting ballot at the Polk County Election Office and a second at a county satellite voting location in Des Moines. She has been charged with first-degree election misconduct, a "Class D felony." In a radio interview, Rote explained she was afraid her initial ballot would be changed to a vote for Hillary Clinton because the "polls are rigged."
3 astronauts return from 115 days on the International Space Station
Three astronauts returned to Earth on Sunday morning after spending nearly four months on board the International Space Station (ISS). American astronaut Kate Rubins, Anatoly Ivanishin of Russia, and Takuya Onishi of Japan landed in a Soyuz space capsule in southeast Kazakhstan. The trip to Earth took less than four hours, though the astronauts had to spend some time simply sitting in the field where they landed to readjust to Earth's gravity. Three astronauts still on the ISS now await the arrival of three new crew members.
Game 5: Cubs lead Indians 3-2 in seventh inning
Game 5 of the World Series is underway at Wrigley Field in Chicago, and the Chicago Cubs are ahead of the Cleveland Indians 3-2 at the top of the seventh inning. The Indians scored their third victory of the series during Game 4 Saturday night, giving them a 3-1 lead. If the Indians win tonight, they will take the series title.
Canada, European Union sign long-delayed CETA trade deal
After years of negotiations and with the concession of a hold-out vote from Belgium, Canada and the European Union on Sunday finally inked their approval of the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), a new trade deal that removes 99 percent of tariffs on trade among Canada and the EU's 28 member nations. If ratified by the European Parliament in 2017, CETA is predicted to produce an extra $12 billion in trade annually. Though the deal is expected to gain parliamentary approval, at least 10 percent of the legislators have voiced serious concerns about its provisions.
6.6 magnitude earthquake shakes Italy but takes no lives
A powerful earthquake struck central Italy Sunday morning, rattling the same region that has been shaken by multiple devastating quakes in recent months. Clocking in at 6.6 magnitude, Sunday's tremors collapsed several homes and churches. Some people were injured but no deaths have been reported. Among the ruined buildings was the Monastery of St. Benedict in Norcia, built on a site where Benedictine monks have been active for more than a millennium. "Everyone has been suspended in a never-ending state of fear and stress," said Bishop Renato Boccardo of Norcia. "They are at their wit's end."
New York opera canceled after sprinkling of suspected cremains in orchestra pit
New York's Metropolitan Opera canceled a show Saturday afternoon after a powdery substance believed to be the ashes left over after a cremation was sprinkled into the orchestra pit. The suspected cremains might have been an opera lover's ashes, said police investigating the incident, as a man in the audience was reportedly overheard saying "he was here to sprinkle ashes of a friend, his mentor in opera, during the performance." No arrest has been made. "We appreciate opera lovers coming to the Met," said Met General Manager Peter Gelb. "We hope that they will not bring their ashes with them."