10 things you need to know today: November 17, 2023

Santos won't run for a second term, Israel finds tunnel as Gaza hospital search continues, and more

Rep. George Santos
Rep. George Santos meets the press
(Image credit: Jabin Botsford / The Washington Post via Getty Images)

1. George Santos says he won't run for reelection

Embattled Rep. George Santos (R-N.Y.) said Thursday he would not seek reelection after the House Ethics Committee released a report detailing "substantial evidence" he violated federal law. The findings are expected to fuel another attempt to expel him from the House. Investigators suspect that Santos used campaign funds for personal expenses and defrauded donors. He also filed false or incomplete campaign finance reports and financial disclosures, the committee alleged in its report. Santos, 35, already faces a 23-count federal indictment accusing him of stealing from donors and submitting false election filings. The panel referred the case to the Justice Department, saying Santos "has brought severe discredit on the House." The New York Times, Politico

2. Israel continues search of Gaza hospital

Israeli soldiers continued to search Al-Shifa Hospital in Gaza City for evidence that Hamas' military was operating out of the facility, as medics feared for the health of patients and other civilians trapped inside. Israel released video showing what it said was a tunnel entrance in the complex to support its allegation that Hamas was operating in bunkers and tunnels under the hospital. Earlier, Israel provided footage showing a small collection of military gear it said was found at Al-Shifa. Hamas has denied Israel's allegations. Israeli troops found the bodies of Yehudit Weiss, 65, and Israeli Cpl. Noa Marciano, 19 — two of the 240 hostages Hamas captured in Israel in its Oct. 7 attack — near the hospital. The Washington Post, USA Today

3. Cameron pledges UK support for Ukraine

British Foreign Secretary David Cameron met Thursday with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, pledging that the U.K. would continue supporting Ukraine "however long it takes" to fight Russia's invasion. "I admire the strength and determination of the Ukrainian people," Cameron told Zelenskyy. The former British prime minister visited Kyiv on his first overseas trip since Prime Minister Rishi Sunak unexpectedly asked him to return to politics in a Cabinet reshuffle this week. Zelenskyy said in a Telegram post that he and Cameron had a "good meeting" and expressed gratitude for Britain's military support, which had totaled $5.7 billion as of last month, second only to the U.S. The Guardian, Euronews

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4. Suspect arrested in death of pro-Israel protester

California authorities have arrested Loay Abdelfattah Alnaji, a 50-year-old Moorpark College professor, on suspicion of involuntary manslaughter in the death of a Jewish protester, Paul Kessler, during opposing pro-Palestinian and pro-Israel demonstrations on Nov. 5, the Ventura County Sheriff's Department announced Thursday. Kessler, 69, fell backwards and hit his head on the ground during a confrontation with a Free Palestine demonstrator, identified as Alnaji, although witnesses gave conflicting accounts of what caused Kessler's fall. Coroners determined in an autopsy that Kessler died from blunt force trauma to the head, and classified his death as a homicide, though that doesn't necessarily mean there was criminal intent. Los Angeles Times

5. New York appeals court judge suspends Trump gag order

A New York appeals court judge on Thursday suspended a partial gag order imposed on Donald Trump by the judge presiding over the former president's civil fraud trial. Judge David Friedman of the state’s intermediate appeals court issued a stay on Judge Arthur Engoron's gag order after raising free speech concerns. Engoron on Oct. 3 ordered Trump, who had criticized Engoron's law clerk, not to disparage court personnel. Trump was free to speak about other matters, but his lawyers accused Engoron of violating Trump's First Amendment rights. Engoron later imposed $15,000 in fines against Trump for violations of his order, and expanded it to cover Trump's lawyers. Soon after the gag order was paused, Trump attacked Engoron's clerk again. The Associated Press, The New York Times

6. David DePape convicted for attacking Paul Pelosi

A jury convicted David DePape on Thursday for attacking then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's husband, Paul Pelosi, in their San Francisco house. Police body-camera footage showed DePape bludgeoning Paul Pelosi, 83, with a hammer before officers subdued him. Nancy Pelosi was not home during the October 2022 attack, but DePape testified that he planned to don an inflatable unicorn costume and interrogate her on video, which he would then upload online. DePape also expressed support for far-right conspiracy theories during his testimony. The jury deliberated for eight hours before finding DePape guilty of attempted kidnapping and assault. He could be sentenced to up to 50 years in federal prison. USA Today, CNN

7. Spanish prime minister wins another term after Catalan amnesty deal

Socialist Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez sealed a four-seat majority in Spain's parliament on Thursday to clinch another term. After weeks of negotiations, Sánchez secured the coalition he needed with an amnesty deal for Catalans, many of whom had been banned from politics for years over their involvement in a failed bid to secede from Spain in violation of national law. Sánchez told members of parliament that the amnesty would help "heal wounds." Tens of thousands of Spaniards protested the deal across the country last weekend. The conservative Popular Party led July elections but its leader, Alberto Núñez Feijóo, could not pull together a governing coalition. BBC News

8. Former girlfriend Cassie accuses Sean 'Diddy' Combs of rape

Singer Cassie sued producer and rapper Sean Combs, commonly known as Diddy, in a New York City federal court on Thursday, accusing him of rape and years of physical abuse. The lawsuit says Combs lured Cassie, his former girlfriend, "into an ostentatious, fast-paced and drug-fueled lifestyle, and into a romantic relationship with him" within two years of their first meeting in 2005 or 2006, according to CNN, which obtained a copy of the complaint. Combs signed Cassie, whose full name is Cassandra Ventura, to his label, Bad Boy Records, soon after they met, when she was 19 and he was 37. Their business relationship continued until 2019. A lawyer for Combs, now 54, called the accusations in the lawsuit offensive and outrageous. CNN

9. GM union members approve contract that ended strike

United Auto Workers members at General Motors have voted to approve the new contract their union negotiated with the company. The approval made GM the first of Detroit's Big Three automakers to get a contract ratified after union members ended punishing strikes. The contract's approval had come into question when narrow majorities of workers at several GM plants opposed it. In the end, it passed by about 3,400 votes, with 54.7% in favor. As of Thursday, larger majorities had backed the UAW contracts at the other two Big Three automakers. At Ford, 66.7% were in favor, while the figure at Stellantis (Chrysler) was 66.5%, according to the UAW website. The Associated Press

10. Kaitlin Armstrong found guilty of killing cyclist 'Mo' Wilson

A Texas jury on Thursday found Kaitlin Armstrong, 35, guilty in the May 2022 shooting death of professional cyclist Anna Moriah "Mo" Wilson. Wilson, 25, had briefly dated Armstrong's boyfriend, Colin Strickland. Prosecutors said Armstrong was "not happy" that Strickland had been communicating with Wilson, who was visiting Austin, Texas, for a bike race. Hours after going swimming with Strickland, Wilson was found unconscious and bleeding from a gunshot wound in the apartment of a friend. Six days later, police issued an arrest warrant for Armstrong, whose Jeep had been spotted nearby shortly before the shooting, but she evaded capture for 43 days and was eventually caught in Costa Rica, where she was teaching yoga. Austin American-Statesman, The New York Times

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