AP Top News at 12:18 a.m. EST

Updated 2 hours and 21 minutes ago

In the shadow of Texas gas drilling sites, health fears intensify

ARLINGTON, TX (AP) – In a playground outside a North Texas daycare center, laughing preschoolers chase each other around a playhouse. Toddlers spin on tricycles. A boy cries as a teacher helps him negotiate a toy. Upstream from the playground, peeking through the trees, is a site where Total Energies pumps natural gas. The French energy giant wants to drill three new wells on the property next to the Mother’s Heart Learning Center, which mainly serves black and Latino children. The three wells, along with two existing ones, would be about 600 feet from where the children planted a sunflower garden.

WHO warns new virus variant poses “very high” risk

GENEVA (AP) – The World Health Organization warned on Monday that the global risk of the omicron variant is “very high” based on early evidence, saying the mutated coronavirus could lead to outbreaks with “serious consequences” . The United Nations health agency’s assessment, contained in a technical paper provided to Member States, amounted to the strongest and most explicit warning from WHO to date regarding the new version first identified. times a few days ago by researchers in South Africa. It happened as a growing circle of countries around the world reported cases of variant and decided to slam their doors in an act now approach, to ask questions later while scientists are rushing to figure out just how dangerous the mutant version could be.

Cosby prosecutors ask Supreme Court to restore conviction

PHILADELPHIA (AP) – Prosecutors have urged the United States Supreme Court to restore Bill Cosby’s sexual assault conviction, complaining in a petition released on Monday that the verdict was overturned over a questionable deal which the comic said , granted him lifetime immunity. They said the Pennsylvania Supreme Court decision in June to overturn Cosby’s conviction set a dangerous precedent by giving a press release the legal weight of an immunity deal. Montgomery County District Attorney Kevin Steele called the court ruling an “indefensible rule,” predicting a wave of criminal appeals if it remains legal. “This decision, as it stands, will have far-reaching negative consequences beyond Montgomery County and Pennsylvania.

Biden vaccine rule for health workers stuck in 10 states

JEFFERSON CITY, Missouri (AP) – A federal judge on Monday blocked President Joe Biden’s administration from applying a coronavirus vaccine warrant to thousands of healthcare workers in 10 states that filed the first court challenge against this requirement. The court order said the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid had no clear authority from Congress to promulgate the vaccine mandate for providers participating in the two government health care programs for the elderly, disabled and poor. St. Louis-based U.S. District Judge Matthew Schelp’s preliminary injunction applies to a coalition of litigation states that includes Alaska, Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wyoming.

Jan. 6 panel establishes contempt vote against former DOJ official

WASHINGTON (AP) – A House committee investigating the Jan.6 Capitol uprising will vote on Wednesday to outrage a former Justice Department official, demanding criminal charges against a provocative witness for the second time as lawmakers seek answers about the violent attack. The committee scheduled a vote on Monday to prosecute contempt charges against Jeffrey Clark, a former Justice Department lawyer who partnered with President Donald Trump as he tried to overturn his electoral defeat. If approved by the panel, the recommendation of criminal contempt charges would then go to the Plenary Assembly for a vote, and then to the Department of Justice.

Elizabeth Holmes accuses her ex-lover, business partner of abuse

SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) – Disgraced entrepreneur Elizabeth Holmes described herself as the abused puppet of her former lover and business partner Sunny Balwani in tearful testimony Monday, as part of her attempt to refute accusations that she allegedly lied about faulty blood testing technology. she had hailed as a major breakthrough. After recounting how she met Balwani while still in high school, Holmes said she eventually fell under his grip after dropping out of Stanford University in 2003 to found Theranos, a Silicon Valley startup. which she led as CEO for the next 15 years. Crying Holmes, now 37, testified that she was raped at Stanford – a factor she says played a role in what she called subsequent enslavement to Balwani, today 56 years old.

Boebert on appeal refuses to apologize for anti-Muslim remarks

WASHINGTON (AP) – Days after fiery Conservative Representative Lauren Boebert of Colorado was harshly criticized for making anti-Muslim comments about Representative Ilhan Omar, a Democrat from Minnesota whom she compared to a bomb-carrying terrorist , the two spoke over the phone. According to the two legislators, it did not go well. Monday’s conversation, which Boebert solicited after issuing a lukewarm statement last Friday, offered the opportunity to hold out an olive branch in a house torn by tension. Instead, it ended abruptly after Boebert rejected Omar’s request for a public apology, amplifying the partisan conflicts that have become a feature, not a bug, of the GOP since a crowd of supporters. Donald Trump stormed the Capitol on January 1.

Twitter’s New CEO Goes Behind-the-Scenes to High Notoriety

Twitter’s new CEO, Parag Agrawal, has gone behind the scenes to take over one of Silicon Valley’s most high-profile and politically unstable jobs. But its previous lack of name recognition coupled with solid technical background seems to be what some big business backers have been looking to get Twitter out of its current slump. A 37-year-old Indian immigrant, Agrawal does not belong to the ranks of famous CEOs, including the man he replaces, Jack Dorsey, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and SpaceX and Tesla’s Elon Musk. These founders and leaders of branded companies have often made headlines – and on Twitter – for feats beyond the day-to-day running of their businesses.

Lawyer: Jussie Smollett “a real victim” of an attack in Chicago

CHICAGO (AP) – Jussie Smollett “is a real victim” of a “real crime,” his lawyer said as the trial of the former “Empire” actor began on Monday, dismissing prosecutors’ claim that he had staged a homophobic and racist attack in Chicago after the television studio he worked at did not take the hate messages he received seriously. Defense attorney Nenye Uche said two brothers attacked Smollett in January 2019 because they didn’t like him and a check for $ 3,500 the actor paid the men was for training to that he can prepare for an upcoming music video – not as payment for staging a hate crime, as prosecutors claim.

LSU hires Kelly away from Notre Dame to be Tigers’ next coach

LSU is hiring Brian Kelly away from Notre Dame, an astonishing decision by one of college football’s most accomplished coaches, moving from the sport’s most famous program to a Southeastern Conference powerhouse. The move was confirmed Monday evening by a person familiar with the ruling who spoke to The Associated Press only on condition of anonymity as neither school was ready to make an official announcement. Yahoo! Sports first reported the rental. It was the second college football bombshell in as many days, coming just over 24 hours after Southern California lured Lincoln Riley away from Oklahoma.

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