Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) had two stents inserted in his heart to address a blockage in an artery this week. The Democratic presidential candidate experienced chest discomfort at a campaign event and was taken to surgery after a medical evaluation in Las Vegas. The hospitalized Sanders was “conversing and in good spirits,” his campaign said, although he canceled upcoming events to rest. Sanders, 78, is the oldest candidate in the race and was deemed to have a “clean bill of health” earlier this year. Though Sanders has been sliding in the polls, he remains a formidable fundraiser, raising $25.3 million in the past three months from 1.4 million donations, his campaign announced this week, the largest quarterly sum a Democratic contender has posted this year. His campaign says his top donors are teachers, and his average donation this year is $19.
A white former police officer who fatally shot her black neighbor in his own home was convicted of murder this week and sentenced to 10 years in prison. “I shot an innocent man,” Amber Guyger, 31, said on the stand, but claimed she believed Botham Jean, 26, was in her apartment, not his unit one floor above. Her 911 call, in which Guyger is heard saying, “I thought it was my apartment” nearly 20 times, was played repeatedly in the seven-day trial. Jean, an accountant, was eating ice cream and watching TV on the couch when Guyger came through his unlocked door. Guyger, off duty but still in uniform, said Jean came toward her; prosecutors said he merely stood up. The case sparked protests after authorities waited three days to arrest Guyger. After five hours of deliberation, a jury made her the first Dallas cop convicted of murder since the 1970s, prompting Jean’s mother to raise her fists and say, “God is good.”
Not a witch hunt
Rep. Chris Collins (R-N.Y.) resigned from office this week before pleading guilty to insider trading and lying to the FBI. Collins, 69, the first member of Congress to endorse Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential bid, was arrested last year but still won a fourth term by about 1,000 votes in his solid-red district covering the Buffalo suburbs. Prosecutors say Collins, who sat on the board of an Australian biotech company, was caught on camera at a White House picnic phoning his son Cameron, 26, to reveal that a multiple-sclerosis drug had failed a medical trial. When the news went public, Cameron Collins and his fiancée’s father had already dumped their shares, allegedly avoiding $768,000 in losses. “I am embarrassed and dismayed,” former Rep. Collins said upon pleading guilty. He had initially derided the case against him as “a partisan witch hunt.”
Frustrated by the stream of migrants coming across the border, President Trump railed at advisers to find a solution at any cost—even if it was shooting migrants in the legs, The New York Times reported this week. Trump also floated digging a water-filled trench along a border wall and stocking it with snakes and alligators, or having the wall electrified or topped with spikes, sending aides searching for price estimates. “You are making me look like an idiot!” Trump fumed at aides in a meeting in March, before announcing that he wanted the entire 2,000-mile border shut down by noon the next day. Though his aides managed to delay the order and ultimately talk Trump down from a border shutdown, resistance from Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen led Trump to force her out. “I may be tough on Border Security, but not that tough,” Trump said in response to the Times report.
Harvard University’s undergraduate admissions system doesn’t intentionally discriminate against Asian-Americans, Federal District Court Judge Allison Burroughs ruled this week. Filed by an anti-affirmative action advocacy group, the case was seen as a major test of affirmative action in college admissions. Plaintiffs argued that Harvard puts an informal cap on the number of Asian-Americans, who make up 25 percent of Harvard’s latest entering class, docking “personal rating” points from candidates stereotyped as “quiet” or “bland.” But Burroughs said Harvard only considers race as a modest “plus” factor for certain minorities, having exhausted race-neutral alternatives to maintain diversity. “The Court will not dismantle a very fine admissions program that passes constitutional muster,” Burroughs wrote in a 130-page opinion, “solely because it could do better.” Plaintiffs pledged to appeal the decision as far as the Supreme Court if necessary.
Reviving an investigation into Hillary Clinton’s private email server, the Trump administration has contacted up to 130 current and former officials who sent messages to the former secretary of state, The Washington Post reported last week. Many of those officials were told that their emails—sent years ago—have been retroactively categorized as classified and now could constitute security violations. State Department investigators began the probe shortly after Trump’s election but seemed to have dropped the case before renewing it around August. Republican lawmakers have pressured Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to complete the review, and Trump continues to blast Clinton despite the FBI having cleared her of criminal wrongdoing. One person targeted called the revived probe “an obscene abuse of power” designed to intimidate ex-Clinton staffers and others. Another official said investigators privately termed the probe “absurd.” The department insists the investigation isn’t politically motivated. ■