On the version of Hot off the Wire posted Dec. 7 at 7:30 a.m. CT:
Chris Christie is doubling down on his criticism that his fellow Republican presidential candidates are too timid to take on Donald Trump and his legal troubles. The former New Jersey governor said after Wednesday’s debate that the other three candidates on stage in Tuscaloosa were “pretending we’re the only four candidates in the race.” Christie noted that Nikki Haley remained silent through an extended discussion of Trump’s fitness for office. Christie said if Haley, Ron DeSantis and others are afraid to take on Trump, they aren’t up to being head of state and sitting across the table from other world leaders.
LAS VEGAS (AP) — Three people are dead and a fourth in critical but stable condition after a gunman opened fire at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas before police killed him in a shootout. Wednesday's attack had terrified students and professors cowering in classrooms. A law enforcement official with direct knowledge of the investigation tells The Associated Press that the shooter was a professor who'd unsuccessfully sought a job at the school. The campus is only a couple of miles from the Las Vegas Strip, where the worst mass shooting in U.S. history took place in October 2017. Police say lessons learned from that tragedy helped them confront Wednesday's attack.
MOSCOW (AP) — State news agencies and authorities in Russia say a girl shot several classmates before killing herself at a school in the city of Bryansk. Initial reports said one person besides the shooter was killed and five people were wounded in Thursday's gunfire. Russian state news agency RIA Novosti reports that one of the people injured is in serious condition. Russia's Investigative Committee says the girl brought a pump-action shotgun to school that she used to fire at her classmates. Russia’s Interior Ministry said it was looking into a motive for the shooting, which is among several school shootings in the country in recent years.
The Israeli military hit Rafah in southern Gaza overnight, residents say, as United Nations officials warn there are no safe places left in the besieged territory. The center of Gaza’s second-largest city, Khan Younis, has also seen fighting amid Israel’s widening air and ground offensive in the southern part of the territory that has displaced tens of thousands more Palestinians and worsened dire humanitarian conditions.
On Dec. 7, 1941, the Empire of Japan launched an air raid on the U.S. Navy base at Pearl Harbor in Hawaii as well as targets in Malaya, Hong Kong, Guam, the Philippines and Wake Island; the United States declared war against Japan the next day.
Next year's Belmont Stakes will take place at Saratoga Race Course. New York Governor Kathy Hochul announced the move Wednesday. The final leg of horse racing's Triple Crown June 8 will be shortened to 1 1/4 miles and the purse increased from $1.5 million to $2 million. The change of location for at least 2024 is because of a massive renovation of Belmont Park. It'll be the first time the race is held at Saratoga. The Belmont construction project is also expected to keep the race in Saratoga in 2025.
The EV trend in the US at the end of 2023 is a little tough to tease out. Overall sales hit a record, but they’re also falling short of expectations amid the industry’s push to transition away from combustion engines and quickly towards EVs. EV inventory is building on dealer lots, and many EV models are taking longer to sell than gas counterparts. Some automakers are discounting their EVs to get them to move. Ford decreased Mach-E production in recent months. This story addresses the many EV market dynamics consumers are seeing.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Two months ago, Kevin McCarthy was booted as House speaker. Now, the Republican congressman from California says he's resigning and will leave Congress by year's end. His announcement caps a stunning end of his House career for the onetime deli counter owner from Bakersfield, California. McCarthy has risen through state and national politics to become second in line to the presidency as speaker, until hard-right conservatives engineered his removal in October. McCarthy made his announcement in The Wall Street Journal on Wednesday and wrote that he'll “serve America in new ways.” McCarthy had brought Republicans into the majority but found it was much more difficult to lead the GOP’s factions.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. military has announced it is grounding all of its Osprey V-22 helicopters, one week after eight Air Force Special Operations Command service members died in a crash off the coast of Japan. The Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps took the extraordinary step of grounding hundreds of aircraft after a preliminary investigation of last week’s crash indicated that a materiel failure — that something went wrong with the aircraft — and not a mistake by the crew led to the deaths. The crash raised new questions about the safety of the Osprey, which has been involved in multiple fatal accidents over its relatively short time in service. Japan grounded its fleet of 14 Ospreys after the crash.
RENO, Nev. (AP) — A Nevada grand jury has indicted six Republicans who submitted certificates to Congress falsely declaring Donald Trump the winner of the 2020 presidential election, making the Western swing state the third to seek charges against so-called “fake electors.” Nevada Attorney General Aaron Ford began investigating the fake electors last month. The announcement represents a shift for Ford, who previously was quiet on whether he would investigate the fake electors before saying that state law did not directly address whether he could pursue charges. Fake electors were also charged in Michigan and Georgia, while 10 Republicans who posed as electors in Wisconsin settled a civil lawsuit Wednesday.
HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — U.S. Coast Guard officials are promising reforms after an internal review found a “permissive environment” for sexual assault and harassment in the service. The report comes months after the Coast Guard apologized for failing to adequately handle cases of sexual assault and harassment at the service’s academy in Connecticut. The review was ordered by Admiral Linda Fagan, commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard. It recommends a range of reforms, including an end to an environment in which inappropriate jokes and comments were tolerated. It promised a greater focus on preventing inappropriate behavior at the earliest stages.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Justice Department says four Russian men accused of torturing an American during the invasion of Ukraine have been charged with war crimes in a first-of-its-kind case. It's the first prosecution against members of the Russian armed forces in connection with atrocities during Moscow’s war against Ukraine. And it's the first time the Justice Department has brought charges under a nearly 30-year-old statute that makes it a crime to subject an American to torture or inhumane treatment during a war. The charges are largely symbolic for now, given the unlikely prospects of the department bringing into custody any of the four defendants, who are fugitives.
The Yankees acquire Juan Soto in a blockbuster deal, Joel Embiid scores 50 while the Mavericks win by 50, Marquette wins a Top 20 matchup with Texas, and the Panthers outshine the Stars on ice.
Some of the words tied to this year’s hottest topics were also among the most mangled when it came to saying them aloud. This year’s lists of the most mispronounced words in the U.S. and Britain were released Thursday by Babbel. The online language learning company commissions The Closed Captioning Group in the U.S. and the British Institute of Verbatim Reports in the U.K. to identify the top words that news anchors, politicians and other public figures have struggled with. Pronunciations that stumped included the first name of the Irish actor starring in “Oppenheimer,” Cillian Murphy. The experts at Babbel his name is pronounced KI-lee-uhn. Another name making was the singer SZA, which they say is pronounced SIZ-uh.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Norman Lear has died. The producer who made TV topical in the 1970s with the sitcom “All in the Family,” died Tuesday night at the age of 101 years old. “All in the Family" starred Carroll O’Connor as diehard conservative Archie Bunker, who clashed with his liberal son-in-law over racism, feminism and the Vietnam War. It was one of a string of TV hits for Lear and then-partner Bud Yorkin that also included “Maude” and “The Jeffersons.” Lear’s series reflected his political beliefs, which he put into action by founding the nonprofit liberal advocacy group People for the American Way.
—The Associated Press
About this program
Host Terry Lipshetz is a senior producer for Lee Enterprises. Besides producing the daily Hot off the Wire news podcast, Terry conducts periodic interviews for this Behind the Headlines program, co-hosts the Streamed & Screened movies and television program and is the producer of Across the Sky, a podcast dedicated to weather and climate.
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New details in killing of American-Palestinian teen; Jim Harbaugh heading to the NFL; Jon Stewart returning to 'The Daily Show'
Trump wins New Hampshire primary; three elected to Baseball Hall of Fame; 'Oppenheimer' leads Oscar nominations