10 things you need to know today: April 25, 2023
Fox News fires Tucker Carlson, Biden announces 2024 re-election bid, and more
Tucker Carlson leaves Fox News
Tucker Carlson, Fox News' top-rated prime-time host, has left the conservative cable network, Fox said Monday. Carlson, whose show averaged more than three million nightly viewers, was among the Fox hosts who had been expected to testify in Dominion Voting Systems' defamation lawsuit against Fox News before the network agreed to pay $787.5 million to settle the case. Carlson came under scrutiny and ridicule after Dominion's lawyers released private text exchanges among several Fox stars, including Carlson, Sean Hannity, and Laura Ingraham. In one, Carlson said he hated former President Donald Trump "passionately." Carlson said Trump's claims about voter fraud costing him the 2020 election were "insane."
Biden announces re-election bid
President Biden formally announced on Tuesday that he is running for re-election in 2024. He asked voters for another term to "finish the job" he started. Biden, already the country's oldest president, would be 86 at the end of a second term, and he has faced concerns about his age, but he presented his more than 50 years of experience in Washington as one of his key advantages. The announcement comes on the four-year anniversary of when Biden declared he was running to challenge then-President Donald Trump in 2019, saying he aimed to prevent Trump from "forever and fundamentally" changing the nation's character.
Sudan factions agree to 72-hour cease-fire
Sudan's warring factions agreed to a 72-hour cease-fire scheduled to start Tuesday to allow foreign governments to get their citizens out of the country. The United States and Saudi Arabia mediated the temporary truce, the Sudan Armed Forces said. Sporadic fighting has continued through several earlier cease-fires. Fighting broke out last week between army forces led by Gen. Abdel Fattah Burhan, Sudan's de factor leader, and his former deputy, Gen. Mohammed Hamdan Dagalo, who leads the Rapid Support Forces paramilitary group. "During this period, the United States urges the SAF and RSF to immediately and fully uphold the ceasefire," U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in a statement.
Kenya starvation cult death toll rises
The death toll linked to a Kenyan Christian death cult rose to 73 on Monday as investigators found more corpses on the property of the cult's leader. Police have exhumed most of the bodies from shallow graves. The dead are believed to be followers of the pastor of Good News International Church, Paul Mackenzie. Survivors have told police that Mackenzie said they would go to heaven if they starved themselves to death. Police detained Mackenzie, now on a hunger strike, pending an investigation after receiving a tip that he was urging his followers to fast to death. Officers found more than a dozen emaciated people. Several of them later died. Thirty-three people have been rescued, the Directorate of Criminal Investigations said on Twitter.
Don Lemon out at CNN
CNN This Morning co-host Don Lemon tweeted Monday that his agent told him CNN had "terminated" him. "I am stunned," Lemon said. "After 17 years at CNN I would have thought that someone in management would have had the decency to tell me directly." The news broke shortly after Fox News announced it had parted ways with its top-rated prime-time host, Tucker Carlson. Lemon faced intense criticism for his treatment of women starting in February when he said former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley (R), now running for the Republican presidential nomination, wasn't in her "prime" at age 51. Lemon was held off the air for several days and apologized for the comment, which he called "inartful and irrelevant."
China backs off ambassador's comment on Ukraine sovereignty
China on Monday walked back a statement by its ambassador to France about Ukraine's sovereignty over Crimea that sparked widespread criticism in Europe. The ambassador, Lu Shaye, had answered a question about Crimea by saying that former Soviet states didn't have "effective status under international law." The remark fueled mistrust of Moscow regarding its respect for the existence of numerous former Soviet republics, including the Baltic states, Latvia, Estonia, and Lithuania. China's foreign ministry spokesperson Mao Ning said Beijing "respects the sovereign status of the republics after the disintegration of the Soviet Union," and noted that "China was one of the first countries to establish diplomatic relations" with those countries after the Soviet Union broke apart.
Ex-Minnesota officer Kimberly Potter released
Former Minnesota officer Kimberly Potter was released from prison Monday after serving 16 months of a two-year sentence for manslaughter in the killing of Daunte Wright, an unarmed Black man, during a traffic stop. Officers stopped Wright for having expired tags and a hanging air freshener. There was a brief struggle when police tried to arrest Wright on an outstanding warrant, and Potter shot the 20-year-old when she mistook her gun for her Taser. Potter said during the trial she was "sorry" and "distraught." Wright's mother, Katie, said she was "dreading" Potter's release. "Some say I should forgive and be at peace but how can I?" she said.
Susan Rice to step down as Biden's domestic policy adviser
Susan Rice, President Biden's domestic policy adviser, plans to step down next month, NBC News reported Monday, citing current and former administration officials. Rice oversaw some of the most controversial issues during her tenure, including immigration. White House Chief of Staff Jeff Zients credited Rice with taking Biden's agenda and the Domestic Policy Council "to new heights." Rice served as national security adviser under then-President Barack Obama. Biden put her on his short list for vice president, and surprised some political strategists when he chose her for the domestic policy job, since her experience was focused on foreign policy.
First Republic lost $100 billion in deposits
First Republic Bank reported Monday that customers took out $100 billion in deposits last month after two regional bank failures raised questions about the financial health of the industry. The bank said deposits fell more than 40 percent to $104.5 billion at the end of the first quarter. When the quarter started, deposits totaled $176.4 billion. The numbers would have been gloomier, but First Republic received $30 billion in deposits from banking giants, including JPMorgan Chase & Co., to signal confidence in the bank. First Republic said its profit fell 33 percent in the quarter compared to the same period a year earlier. Revenue fell 13 percent. The bank's shares have fallen nearly 90 percent since March, The Wall Street Journal reported.
Bed Bath & Beyond shares plunge after bankruptcy filing
Bed Bath & Beyond shares plunged 25 percent on Monday after the struggling retailer filed for bankruptcy protection. The company announced Sunday it was holding a liquidation sale after failing to line up the funds it needed to continue operating. Bed Bath & Beyond now plans to use the Chapter 11 process to keep it going as it sells off inventory and salvages assets like its Buy Buy Baby stores. A bankruptcy judge on Monday authorized the company to borrow $40 million to keep it stable through the sale process. The company sent customers an email telling them they had until Wednesday to use any coupons they had at the 360 Bed Bath & Beyond stores or 120 Buy Buy Baby locations.