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November 20, 2018

President Trump has given Special Counsel Robert Mueller written responses to questions asked about Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election, Trump's lawyers said Tuesday.

Attorney Jay Sekulow said copies of the questions and Trump's answers, as well as correspondence between Trump's legal team and Mueller's office, will not be released to the public. Another attorney, Rudy Giuliani, said it is now "time to bring this inquiry to a conclusion." This is the first time Trump has directly cooperated with the probe, The Associated Press reports.

It took about a year for Mueller's office and Trump's attorneys to reach the compromise of Trump answering Russia-related questions without having to appear for a sit-down interview. Part of the compromise included Mueller setting aside for the time being questions about obstruction of justice in relation to the firing of former FBI Director James Comey, AP reports. Catherine Garcia

4:48 p.m.

An alarming number of young e-cigarette users don't realize just how much nicotine they're exposed to when vaping, a new study has shown.

Published on Monday in the journal Pediatrics, new research revealed that adolescents were getting a high amount of nicotine even when they thought the products they were using were nicotine-free. The study surveyed more than 500 adolescents, and then performed urine tests on 284 of those, and eventually found that about 40 percent of teens who thought they were using nicotine-free products still tested positive.

While e-cigarettes are thought by some to be healthier than traditional cigarettes, nicotine is no less addictive in a Juul than in a Marlboro. And in many cases, vapers were found to be taking in similar levels of nicotine in their e-cigarettes compared to traditional cigarettes.

The addictive powers of nicotine are causing concern that the lack of awareness around e-cigarettes may lead to a "generation of addicted young people" who will vape for years to come, or even switch to more harmful traditional cigarettes, NBC News reported. "This may be a pathway into nicotine addiction" that nobody saw coming, explained Andrew Stokes, a professor of global health at Boston University.

Read more about this study's troubling conclusions at NBC News. Shivani Ishwar

4:47 p.m.

Trump's chief policy adviser Stephen Miller is well-known for his hawkish stance on immigration. But a new report from Politico highlights just how personal the matter is to him — to the point where he will reportedly take time to focus on a single migrant detainee's deportation.

Three current and former Department of Homeland Security officials told Politico Miller began calling Immigration and Customs Enforcement shortly after President Trump took office in 2017. He would reportedly insist that the agency include more details, including full names and pending criminal charges, in press releases about immigrants ICE apprehend.

Officials reportedly said nothing of the sort had ever been done before: unless the individuals had been convicted or charged, releasing such information would constitute a breach of personal privacy. But in 2017, an executive order issued by Trump concerning public safety contained a provision which excluded non-U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents from such privacy protections.

Administration officials largely resisted acting on the provision, per Politico. "We tried to protect as many people from Miller and his requests as possible," said a former DHS official. “When he started going lower and calling random career officials, we would have to go and say, 'If Stephen calls you, elevate it immediately and do not answer.'"

It all highlights Miller's "granular interest in the people crossing the U.S. border, and the unprecedented steps" the 31-year-old has taken to bring their personal information to light. Read the full report at Politico. Tim O'Donnell

4:28 p.m.

Marvel has been planting the seeds of its grand finale, Avengers: Endgame, for nearly a decade now — and there's no better example than a prescient scene from Avengers: Age of Ultron.

The looming threat of Thanos hung over Joss Whedon's 2015 sequel, when Tony Stark was haunted by the fallout of the Chitauri alien invasion from the original Avengers. The man behind that invasion was none other than Thanos, who even then was seeking to obtain the six Infinity Stones and wipe out half the universe.

Tony's desire to protect the Earth from returning alien invaders is what inspires him to secretly build Ultron, an artificial intelligence program that goes awry. In a brief scene that sets up the primary conflict of Endgame years in advance and could easily inspire a callback, Tony defends his thinking.

"A hostile alien army came charging through a hole in space — we're standing 300 feet below it," Tony says. "We're the Avengers. We can bust arms dealers all the livelong day but that up there? That's the endgame. How were you guys planning on beating that?"

Steve Rogers responds, "Together." Tony retorts, "We'll lose," to which Steve says, "Then we'll do that together, too."

Earlier, Tony saw a vision of his fellow Avengers dying, apparently at the hands of this alien threat. He explains that the worst part of this nightmare wasn't that his friends were killed, but that he wasn't.

Four years later, the endgame Tony foresaw has arrived, and just as he feared, half of the Avengers were murdered in Infinity War while he survived. In Endgame, which derives its name partially from this scene, the Avengers will seek out a rematch against Thanos. Although they failed last time because they were split apart, this time, they may able to beat him just like Steve said: together. Brendan Morrow

4:26 p.m.

And they said playing ball like a girl was a bad thing...

CBS Sports Network announced on Monday that it will broadcast 40 WNBA games when the season begins next month. This multiyear deal is a major win for the women's league, as it will double its national TV exposure, reports ESPN.

“We are truly excited to partner with the WNBA, bringing the country's premier women's sports league to CBS Sports Network. This partnership is one of the biggest and most impactful women's sports programming arrangements ever at CBS Sports,” said CBS Sports chair Sean McManus.

The WNBA's 23rd season opens on May 24, with the matchup between the Minnesota Lynx and the Chicago Sky on March 25 being the first to air on the CBS Sports Network. This new deal is just another addition to the WNBA's already budding network, which has ESPN showing 16 regular-season telecasts, reports ESPN.

Each year, the WNBA's average viewership steadily increases. In 2018, the league's following across ESPN2 and NBA TV went up 31 percent.

Smaller details of the deal are still being finalized. It's unclear how the WNBA will choose which games to air on ESPN versus CBS Sports after this year, and there are still discussions about expanding the coverage to include features and other WNBA programming.

Either way, this seems like the first official win of the season. Amari Pollard

4:17 p.m.

Three years after Prince's tragic accidental overdose at the age of 57, Random House announced on Monday that The Beautiful Ones — the singer's highly anticipated autobiography — will be posthumously released on October 29.

Initially announced just weeks before his 2016 death, the memoir will be a collection of Prince's unfinished manuscripts, never-before-seen pictures, and handwritten lyrics, and will invite the reader to take a deep dive into the creative process of the singer's early days as he shaped an iconic "persona, an artistic vision and a life, before the hits and the fame that would come to define him," wrote Random House, per The Hollywood Reporter.

The nearly 300-page book will also include an introduction by Dan Piepenbring — the New Yorker writer who Prince chose as collaborator before passing — focusing on Prince's last days and his conflicted attempts to reveal more of himself and his ideas to the public, while remaining true to the "mystique he'd so carefully cultivated."

The biography will cover the singer's childhood in Minneapolis, early years as a rising musician, all the way to the peak of his international fame, solely using Prince's own writings, personal archive and unfinished manuscripts. The Beautiful Ones promises to detail and celebrate the story of one of the most influential musicians of all time — read more about the upcoming work at The Hollywood Reporter. Marina Pedrosa

3:38 p.m.

The response didn't take long.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced on Monday that the United States would not renew waivers exempting five countries from sanctions on Iranian oil imports. Pompeo said the intention is "to bring Iran's oil exports to zero, denying the regime its principal source of revenue."

The list of countries includes large markets such as China, India, South Korea, Japan, and Turkey. And a few of them quickly let the U.S. know they were not happy about the announcement.

Iran denounced the move as "illegal" and denied that it has "any value or credibility." Turkey, a key U.S. ally in the Middle East, followed suit. The country's Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Twitter that Turkey would not accept the "unilateral" terms.

China also pushed back, calling Pompeo's words more evidence of the United States' "unilateral sanctions and long-arm jurisdiction."

On the flip side, Israel and Saudi Arabia — two countries historically at odds with Iran — praised the decision. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said it "is of great importance for increasing pressure" on Iran.

India, South Korea, and Japan have yet to formally respond.

The announcement is the latest example of the Trump administrating ramping up tensions with Iran — the White House recently designated Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps a terrorist group. Tim O'Donnell

3:27 p.m.

It's not a good day to be one of President Trump's picks for the Federal Reserve Board.

Not only did Herman Cain on Monday withdraw from consideration after facing Republican opposition in the Senate, but CNN is also now reporting on numerous old articles written by Trump's other Fed pick, Stephen Moore, in which he complains about "the feminization of basketball."

Moore wrote that at men's college basketball games, there should be "no more women refs, no women announcers, no women beer venders, no women anything," unless the women "look like Bonnie Bernstein." He also said that female tennis players want "equal pay for inferior work," complained about the fact that women "now feel free to play with the men," and wrote, "Women are sooo malleable! No wonder there's a gender gap."

"This was a spoof," Moore told CNN in defense of his past writing. "I have a sense of humor."

Trump has not yet formally nominated Moore to the Federal Reserve Board, although he has announced his intention to do so. Moore's nomination previously faced some setbacks especially in light of a report that he owes the IRS $75,000. As the White House interviews other potential candidates, Politico reported on April 16 that Moore's nomination may not ever end up reaching Capitol Hill. Brendan Morrow

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