10 things you need to know today: January 13, 2024

Winter storm blankets large swath of northern United States, more than 30 Palestinians killed during overnight airstrike in Gaza, and more

A snowplow clears snow in Iowa
A plow clears snow in Des Moines, Iowa, days before the state's 2024 caucuses
(Image credit: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

1. Winter storm blankets large swath of northern United States

A powerful winter storm blew across large portions of the northern United States Friday into Saturday, causing snow buildups, plunging temperatures and rain in a number of states. The storm continued an ongoing week of winter weather in the United States and more than 70 million people from California to New York remained under a winter weather advisory heading into Saturday. There are currently 36 states that have winter storm advisories, warnings or watches. Most of Iowa remains under a winter storm warning with six to 10 inches of snow expected, causing most of the Republican presidential candidates to cancel campaign events ahead of the state's upcoming caucuses. CNN, The Associated Press

2. More than 30 Palestinians reportedly killed during overnight airstrike in Gaza

More than 30 Palestinians were reportedly killed in the Gaza Strip during a series of overnight airstrikes by Israel on Saturday, local officials said. The dead reportedly included women and children. One of these attacks reportedly landed on a home in Gaza City, as video provided by the state's civil department shows rescue workers appearing to comb through the rubble. At least 20 people were killed in this specific attack, which occurred in the city's Daraj neighborhood, Gaza officials said. The airstrikes come as Israel and Hamas approach their 100th day of war, with no end to the conflict in sight and the death toll continuing to rise. The Associated Press

3. Ruling party candidate wins Taiwan’s presidential election

Lai Ching-te was elected president of Taiwan on Saturday, securing a third straight victory for the island's ruling political party in a blow to China's hopes of controlling the country. Lai, a member of the Democratic Progressive Party, won the election as part of a three-way contest that saw bitter campaigning from all sides, though each of the trio of candidates promised to protect the island from Chinese pressure. China has long claimed sovereignty over Taiwan and has threatened to launch an invasion, while Taiwanese leaders view the island as an independent state. China's morale on the matter will likely be deflated by the victory of Lai, who China has called an "instigator of war." NPR, Bloomberg

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4. US military launches strike against Houthi stronghold in Yemen

U.S. military forces launched another airstrike on a Houthi-controlled site in Yemen on Saturday, marking the second time in two days that Western forces have attacked the rebel group. The destroyer USS Carney conducted the strike around 3:45 a.m. using Tomahawk missiles. No additional details were provided, though witnesses in Yemen's capital, Sanaa, reportedly heard one loud boom. The airstrike came following an additional barrage of attacks against the Houthis by a joint U.S.-U.K. strike team that left at least five Houthis dead. The back-and-forth has come in response to Houthi rebels attacking shipping vessels in the Red Sea, angered over the ongoing war between Israel and Hamas. The New York Times, CBS News

5. Trump ordered to pay The New York Times nearly $400,000 in legal fees after failed lawsuit

Former President Donald Trump must pay nearly $400,000 in legal fees to The New York Times and a trio of Times reporters, a judge ruled Friday. The former president was ordered to pay $393,000 to cover the legal fees of his lawsuit against the newspaper that was dismissed last year. Trump had sued the Times and the three reporters, Susanne Craig, David Barstow and Russ Buettner, over a 2018 story about his family's history of tax schemes. Trump had sought $100 million in damages, but the newspaper and its reporters were dismissed from the lawsuit after it was determined that his claims "fail as a matter of constitutional law." Politico, CNBC

6. Federal prosecutors to seek death penalty for Buffalo mass shooter

The U.S. Justice Department said Friday it was seeking the death penalty for Payton Gendron, the white supremacist who killed 10 Black people at a supermarket in Buffalo, New York, in 2022. Prosecutors believe that "the circumstances in Counts 11-20 of the Indictment are such that, in the event of a conviction, a sentence of death is justified," the Justice Department wrote in a court filing. Gendron, now 20, was sentenced to life in prison after pleading guilty to a slew of state charges including murder and domestic terrorism. New York state does not have capital punishment, but federal prosecutors are seeking death as part of a separate hate crimes statute. The Guardian, ABC News

7. Cockpit window crack forces Japanese ANA Boeing 737-800 flight to turn back

A Japanese ANA Boeing 737-800 flight was forced to return to the airport Saturday after a crack was discovered in the cockpit window, an ANA spokesperson said. The flight, headed to Toyama airport, was forced to return to Sapporo-New Chitose airport after a crack was found on the outermost of four layers covering the plane's cockpit. No injuries were reported. The incident marks the latest in a series of mechanical failures and close calls for airline manufacturers, in particular Boeing and Airbus. The recent blowing off of a cabin door on an Alaska Airlines Boeing flight has led to renewed scrutiny of the industry. Reuters

8. Supreme Court to hear dispute over Starbucks firing of pro-union workers

The U.S. Supreme Court said Friday it would hear oral arguments in a case pitting Starbucks against its former employees. The coffeehouse giant is appealing a ruling that ordered the company to re-hire seven terminated employees who were part of a push to get their store to unionize. The case will likely have a wide swath of implications for labor and union rights across the country, and the court will decide the proper standards to be held by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) against employers in these types of cases. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is supporting Starbucks, arguing that the company was within its right to fire the employees. The Hill, The New York Times

9. Kansas Proud Boy sentenced to more than 4 years for Jan. 6 attacks

A Kansas man was sentenced Friday to more than four years in prison for his role in the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol. William Chrestman, 50, a member of the far-right Proud Boys movement, was sentenced to 55 months behind bars, with the judge saying he added "fuel to the fire" during the attack. Chrestman brought a large ax to the Capitol and admittedly threatened to kill a Capitol police officer. He was also seen shouting and egging on the crowd, telling them to "take back their house." Chrestman became notable for his garb, as he arrived at the building dressed in tactical gear and a gas mask. The Washington Post

10. Air Canada passenger falls onto tarmac after opening cabin door

An Air Canada flight from Toronto to Dubai was delayed for almost six hours this week after a passenger opened a cabin door and fell onto the tarmac, Peel Regional Police said. Authorities reportedly responded to the airport after receiving a call of a man who "opened an aircraft door and fallen out onto the tarmac while the aircraft was at the gate and boarding," police said in a press release. The man had minor injuries and was later taken into custody. Air Canada said in a statement that the man boarded the plane and opened the door instead of taking his seat, adding that the airline had followed all proper boarding procedures. USA Today

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