Daily briefing

10 things you need to know today: December 10, 2017

Moore and Jones make final push before Election Day, Trump visits Civil Rights Museum, and more


Moore and Jones make final push before Election Day

The Roy Moore campaign on Sunday began sending out robocalls featuring the voice of President Trump touting Moore's record on key issues. If "Alabama elects liberal Democrat Doug Jones," Trump warns, "all of our progress will be stopped full." The Jones campaign is also marshaling its allies for the final 48 hours before the special Senate election. Jones has promoted endorsements from celebrities including Keegan-Michael Key and Connie Britton, and Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) and former Gov. Deval Patrick (D-Mass.) have traveled to Alabama to help Jones court the black voters he needs to win. Final polls show a close race, though Moore has regained some of his early lead as most GOP voters remain loyal despite the sexual misconduct allegations leveled against him by multiple women.


Trump visits Civil Rights Museum

President Trump attended the opening of the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum in Jackson on Saturday, touring the facility and making brief remarks. "The Civil Rights Museum records the oppression, cruelty, and injustice inflicted on the African-American community, the fight to end slavery, to break down Jim Crow, to end segregation, to gain the right to vote, and to achieve the sacred birthright of equality," Trump said, adding, "That's big stuff. That's big stuff. Those are very big phrases, very big words." His presence at the museum opening was protested by Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.), a Civil Rights leader, and Derrick Johnson, the NAACP president, among others. Lewis and Johnson boycotted the event because of Trump's presence.


California governor says wildfires are the 'new normal'

"This is kind of the new normal," California Gov. Jerry Brown (D) said Saturday of the massive wildfires in Southern California that have claimed at least one life and burned tens of thousands of acres. "With climate change, some scientists are saying that Southern California is literally burning up," Brown continued. "So we have to have the resources to combat the fires and we also have to invest in managing the vegetation and forests ... in a place that's getting hotter." Fires in the northern part of the state this fall killed more than 40 people and burned more than 8,000 structures. Dry, windy conditions have made the blazes now burning near Los Angeles difficult to contain.


Arab League states demand Trump retract Jerusalem decision

Foreign ministers from 22 Arab League nations issued a statement Sunday saying President Trump's decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel this past week is a "dangerous development that places the United States at a position of bias in favor of the occupation [of Palestine] and the violation of international law and resolutions." The statement asks Trump to make a retraction. Failing that, signatory states will petition the United Nations Security Council to pass a resolution denouncing the decision, which critics say will impede the Israel-Palestine peace process.


Swedish synagogue attacked with firebombs

A synagogue in the city of Gothenburg, Sweden, was attacked with firebombs late Saturday evening while a youth event was happening inside. No one was injured, and the building was not damaged. Swedish authorities have arrested three people in connection to the attack, and eyewitnesses report the flaming objects were thrown by a group of about a dozen young men. The attack has been linked in news reports to Friday protests in Malmo, Sweden, in which critics of President Trump's decision to acknowledge Jerusalem as Israel's capital shouted anti-Semitic slogans.


Violence erupts near U.S. Embassy in Lebanon

Lebanese security forces deployed tear gas and water cannons against protesters outside the U.S. Embassy near Beirut, Lebanon, on Sunday. The demonstrators, who threw rocks and set fires in the road, were protesting President Trump's announcement that the United States will recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital. "There is a lot of anger here," said Al Jazeera reporter Zeina Khodr, who was on the scene. "What they're chanting is, 'Palestine forgive us, they closed the door on us,' clearly in reference to Arab leaders."


Mueller filing says Manafort violated gag order with Ukraine op-ed

Court documents filed by Special Counsel Robert Mueller on Friday present evidence that former Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort, who was indicted in connection to Mueller's Russia probe in October, violated a gag order by heavily editing an op-ed defending political work he did in Ukraine. Manafort's attorney claimed earlier this week he was not significantly involved in crafting the article, but Mueller's 41-page filing presented evidence including "emails, drafts with tracked edits, and records showing that a computer user named 'paul manafort' created a version of the op-ed and made numerous changes," Reuters reports. Prosecutors used this discovery to bolster their case against lifting Manafort's house arrest.


Appeals court judge accused of sexual harassment

Judge Alex Kozinski of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit has been accused of sexual harassment by a former clerk, Heidi Bond, in a Washington Post report. Bond alleges Kozinski showed her pornography on multiple occasions, asking what she thought of it and whether it made her aroused. Five other women have made similar accusations against Kozinski; all are former clerks or externs of the court. Kozinski said he does not "remember ever showing pornographic material" to staff, that he "would never intentionally do anything to offend anyone," and that it is "regrettable that a handful have been offended by something" he "may" have done.


Trump tangles with Washington Post reporter over rally crowd photo

President Trump took aim at a Washington Post reporter, Dave Weigel, on Twitter Saturday evening after Weigel posted a photo questioning the president's claim that his Florida rally for Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore was "packed to the rafters." By the time of Trump's post, Weigel had deleted the offending photo, which he originally believed showed a half-empty arena at the start of Trump's talk. Trump demanded an apology, retraction, and that Weigel be fired. Weigel quickly obliged the first two requests but has retained his job.


SNL's Santa faces tough questions about the news

Saturday Night Live's mall Santa Claus (Kenan Thompson) and his elf sidekick (Kate McKinnon) face some tough questions in the cold open from children who are more interested in benefiting from Santa's ethical omniscience than from his gift-giving capacities. After a couple present requests, a kid named Tyler cuts right to the point: "What did Al Franken do?" "Well, Tyler," Santa answers after a failed attempt to shove this question over to the elf, "I guess you could say that Al Franken is on Santa's naughty list this year." "And what about Roy Moore? Which list is he on?" Tyler responds. "It's not really a list," McKinnon's elf interjects. "It's more of a registry." Even Santa's standard threat of coal in the stocking isn't what it used to be for news-savvy kids. As little Jessica scoffs, "We both know coal is a dying industry."


A surge in violence in Pakistan
The rubble of a Peshawar mosque damaged in a suicide bombing.

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The Adani Group scandal, explained
Gautam Adani.

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China says it successfully cloned 3 'super cows'
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China says it successfully cloned 3 'super cows'

Japanese restaurants fight back against viral 'sushi terrorism' trend
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Republicans oust Ilhan Omar from House committee
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