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October 15, 2018

Paul Allen, the philanthropist and co-founder of Microsoft, died Monday in Seattle from complications of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. He was 65.

In a statement, his sister, Jody, said Allen was "a remarkable individual on every level." Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said Allen "created magical products, experiences, and institutions, and in doing so, he changed the world." Allen founded Microsoft in 1975 with Bill Gates, and after leaving the company, he founded Vulcan Inc., which oversaw his philanthropic and business endeavors.

One of the world's wealthiest people, Allen's net worth was estimated at more than $20 billion. He owned the Portland Trail Blazers and Seattle Seahawks, plus had a stake in the Seattle Sounders soccer team. Allen was diagnosed nine years ago with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, and announced earlier this month he had started treatment for it again. Catherine Garcia

9:12a.m.

Americans' opinions on the impact social media is having on the country have shifted quite a bit in the past year.

A SurveyMonkey/Axios poll found that when asked if social media is helping promote democracy and free speech or doing more to hurt it, 57 percent of Americans said it hurts more than it helps, a dramatic spike from last year when only 43 percent said the same thing. In November 2017's survey, 53 percent of Americans said social media helps more than it hurts.

This shift in opinion has affected voters of both parties, although Republicans were more likely than Democrats to call social media harmful. Among Republicans, 69 percent now think social media does more harm than good to democracy and free speech compared to 52 percent in 2017; among Democrats, 48 percent say the same, up from 37 percent in 2017.

Additionally, 55 percent of Americans are concerned that the federal government won't do enough to regulate big technology companies, a 15-point increase from when that question was asked last year. The last version of the survey was conducted before it was reported that a political consulting firm, Cambridge Analytica, had accessed users' private Facebook data. Despite all this, 63 percent of Americans still said that social media has a positive impact on their life, with more Democrats saying that than Republicans.

This poll was conducted by speaking to 3,622 adults online from Nov. 9-13. The margin of error is 2.5 percentage points. Read more at Axios. Brendan Morrow

9:11a.m.

A federal judge in California will hear arguments Monday for blocking President Trump's November executive order restricting asylum applications to migrants who enter the U.S. legally.

Civil rights groups aim to persuade U.S. District Judge Jon Tigar the order violates current immigration law, as the Immigration and Nationality Act says anyone who arrives in the U.S. "whether or not at a designated port of arrival" may apply for asylum. They also argue the administration made a procedural error by failing to provide adequate time for public comment on the new rule.

The Trump administration has claimed via a statement by acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker and Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen that Trump holds "broad authority to suspend or restrict" immigration if he believes it is in U.S. national interest to do so.

Should Tigar, appointed by former President Barack Obama, decide against the Trump administration Monday, it will likely be a temporary ruling restoring the previous guidelines while further litigation proceeds. Bonnie Kristian

8:50a.m.

The White House giveth and the White House taketh away.

The White House has informed CNN that reporter Jim Acosta's press pass will be suspended again after a temporary restraining order preventing the suspension expires, CNN reports. Judge Timothy J. Kelly on Friday ruled that the White House needed to restore Acosta's access, and issued a 14-day restraining order, but that order expires next week.

The restraining order came as part of a lawsuit filed by CNN against members of the Trump administration, which suspended Acosta's press pass after a particularly contentious press conference exchange during which he would not give up the microphone in his attempt to ask a follow-up question. In its suit, CNN argues the White House is violating Acosta's First and Fifth Amendment rights. Judge Kelly has not yet ruled on the actual case, and while he agreed that the White House had suspended Acosta's pass without due process, he suggested it could try to revoke the pass again if it were to provide that due process in the second attempt, CNN reports.

The White House says it plans to "further develop rules and processes to ensure fair and orderly press conferences in the future." CNN's Brian Stelter writes in his Reliable Sources newsletter that the White House is trying to "establish a paper trail that will empower the administration to boot Acosta again at the end of the month." Per The Washington Post, the judge in the case can extend the current restraining order, or even consider a permanent order. Brendan Morrow

8:50a.m.

Nissan said Monday it was taking steps to remove its chairman, Carlos Ghosn, for allegedly violating Japanese financial law, CNBC reports. The Japanese auto maker said Ghosn and board director Greg Kelly had been under-reporting compensation amounts to the Tokyo Stock Exchange securities report for years. Nissan said "numerous other significant acts" by Ghosn had been uncovered, "such as personal use of company assets."

Trading of Nissan shares had already ended by the time the news broke, but shares of French auto maker Renault, also led by Ghosn, dropped by 13 percent, hitting their lowest level in three years. Japanese media reported Monday that Ghosn had been arrested. Harold Maass

7:40a.m.

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald's first weekend at the U.S. box office was not especially magical.

The sequel to the Harry Potter prequel took in $62 million domestically this weekend, coming in below its predecessor's 2016 $74 million debut. This is a disappointment, though not a disaster, for Warner Bros., considering estimates had the film pegged at $75 million or more a few days ago. Instead, The Crimes of Grindelwald ended up with the weakest opening weekend of any film in the Harry Potter film franchise. The first Fantastic Beasts held that distinction before, while the lowest opening of the original series was that of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, which debuted at $77 million in 2007, the equivalent of $94 million in 2018 dollars.

The Crimes of Grindelwald performed much better overseas than it did in the U.S., though, taking in $191 million internationally, above the original Fantastic Beasts' international opening of $145 million, so once again a blockbuster's somewhat weak domestic take has been salvaged by its performance elsewhere.

A movie franchise seeing a box office dip in its second outing isn't uncommon, to be fair, and that happened recently with both Star Wars: The Last Jedi and Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. But considering The Crimes of Grindelwald is even more connected to the original Harry Potter series than its predecessor, featuring both a young Dumbledore and Hogwarts itself, the film had potential to be a much larger hit. Unfortunately, with a Rotten Tomatoes score of just 40 percent and a CinemaScore rating of B+, the lowest of any Harry Potter universe film, it seems director David Yates and writer J.K. Rowling this time are struggling to keep audiences under their spell. Brendan Morrow

2:06a.m.

Missing for 40 years, a 1,600-year-old mosaic depicting St. Mark is back in Cyprus, thanks to the "Indiana Jones of the art world."

Arthur Brand of The Netherlands is an art investigator, and after two years of searching, finally found the mosaic, which was looted from an Orthodox Christian church in Cyprus in the 1970s, in an apartment in Monaco. He told Agence France-Presse that a British family bought the mosaic "in good faith more than four decades ago." When he finally had the mosaic in his possession, it was "one of the greatest moments of my life," he said.

Brand delivered the mosaic to the Cypriot embassy in The Hague on Friday, and it was back in Cyprus by Sunday. He earned the Indiana Jones nickname in 2015 after he found two horse statues that once stood outside Adolf Hitler's office. Catherine Garcia

1:38a.m.

During an interview with Fox News that aired Sunday night, President Trump said he will not listen to the tape recording of the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Khashoggi, a Washington Post columnist living in the United States, was killed last month inside the Saudi embassy in Istanbul. The Turkish government has supplied the audio, Trump told Chris Wallace, adding that listening to it won't change how he decides to respond. It's a "suffering tape, it's a terrible tape," Trump said. "I've been fully briefed on it, there's no reason for me to hear it. I know everything that went on in the tape without having to hear it."

U.S. intelligence has concluded that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman ordered the killing, which he denies. Khashoggi had been critical of the Saudi government, but also supported some of its policies. Trump told reporters on Saturday that a full report will be published by Tuesday, including the answer to "who did it." On Fox News, Trump said Saudi Arabia is "an ally, and I want to stick with an ally that in many ways has been very good." Catherine Garcia

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