Morning Headlines - Friday, Mar. 24, 2023

U.S. & World and Wisconsin trending headlines, and the meme of the day.

Morning Headlines - Friday, Mar. 24, 2023

U.S. and World Headlines

US Retaliates With Airstrikes In Syria After Iranian Drone Strike Kills US Contractor

The U.S. military carried out several precision airstrikes in Syria on Thursday, reportedly killing eight Iranians, in retaliation for a drone strike Iranian forces conducted earlier in the day on a coalition base that killed one American.

The Defense Department said Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps crashed a UAV into a building near Hasakah in northeast Syria at approximately 1:38 p.m. local time, leaving one U.S. contractor dead. The attack also wounded five U.S. service members and another U.S. contractor.

According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, an opposition war monitor, two of the American strikes killed at least eight Iranian fighters.

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Will He Or Won’t He? Bragg Faces Historic Test With Trump Indictment

Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg (D) is facing the biggest political test of his career: the possible indictment of former President Trump.

It’s a consequential moment that could end with Bragg becoming the first in history to prosecute an indicted former president.

As the possibility rises, Bragg is facing questions about the strength of his case, about his motives for going forward and even over whether he’ll pull back from the brink.

“Alvin Bragg is caught between a rock and a hard spot,” said Susan Del Percio, a longtime New York-based Republican strategist who has opposed Trump. “He had to bring the charges forward because of public pressure, but he isn’t sure if they’ll stick.”

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Appeals Court Blocks COVID Vaccine Mandate For Federal Workers

President Biden's order that federal employees get vaccinated against COVID-19 was blocked Thursday by a federal appeals court.

The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans rejected arguments that Mr. Biden, as the nation's chief executive, has the same authority as the CEO of a private corporation to require that employees be vaccinated.

The ruling from the full appeals court, 16 full-time judges at the time the case was argued, reversed an earlier ruling by a three-judge 5th Circuit panel that had upheld the vaccination requirement. Judge Andrew Oldham, nominated to the court by then-President Donald Trump, wrote the opinion for a 10-member majority.

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Utah Becomes First State To Sign Law Limiting Kids' Social Media Use

Utah became on Thursday the first state to enact legislation that restricts children and teens from using social media without their parents' consent.

Gov. Spencer Cox (R) signed two bills into law aimed at limiting when and where anyone younger than 18 years old can interact online, and to stop companies from luring minors to certain websites.

Under the law that's due to take effect on March 1, 2024, social media companies will have to instate a curfew for minors in the state, barring them from using their accounts from 10:30pm to 6:30am.

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Death Of The Camaro! Chevy Announces Plans To Stop Manufacturing Sporty Model

The Chevrolet Camaro, for decades the dream car of many teenage American males, is going out of production.

General Motors, which sells the brawny muscle car, said Wednesday it will stop making the current generation early next year.

The future of the car, which is raced on NASCAR and other circuits, is a bit murky. GM says another generation may be in the works.

'While we are not announcing an immediate successor today, rest assured, this is not the end of Camaro's story,' Scott Bell, vice president of Chevrolet, said in a statement.

The current sixth-generation Camaro, introduced in 2016, has done well on the racetrack, but sales have been tailing off. When the current generation Camaro came out in 2016, Chevrolet sold 72,705 of them. But by the end of 2021 that number fell almost 70 percent to 21,893. It rebounded last year to 24,652.

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Wisconsin Headlines

Hackers Attack Wisconsin Court System Computer Network

Hackers have attacked the Wisconsin court system's computer network, court officials said Thursday.

A cyberattack began early this week, according to a statement from court officials. Network users may have experienced intermittent service or slower than usual response times from online services, court officials said. Asked when specifically the attack began and if it's still ongoing, courts spokesman Tom Sheehan said in an email that he had no further information.

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Wisconsin Supreme Court Candidates Dispute One Another's Impartiality

The two candidates in Wisconsin’s contentious Supreme Court race each argued that their opponent was driven by partisan motives in back-to-back appearances on Wisconsin Public Radio Thursday.

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Wisconsin’s New Secretary Of State Surprised By Appointment

Wisconsin’s newly appointed secretary of state said Thursday that she had no idea Gov. Tony Evers was going to offer her the job, defusing Republican allegations that her appointment was part of a long-planned scheme tied to her dropping out of a U.S. Senate race last year.

Evers announced Friday that longtime Secretary of State Doug La Follette, a Democrat who narrowly hung on to the position in November, had abruptly resigned. The governor said he appointed Sarah Godlewski to the position rather than call a special election.

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Wisconsin Man Pleads Guilty to Making Racially Charged Threats Toward Black Residents

United States Attorney Gregory J. Haanstad of the Eastern District of Wisconsin joined Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division in announcing that on March 23, 2023, a Wisconsin man pleaded guilty to one felony count and one misdemeanor count of intimidating and interfering with Black residents because of their race and because they were exercising their right to fair housing. 

According to court documents, William McDonald, 45, of West Allis, Wisconsin, admitted that in March 2021, he vandalized a Black woman’s vehicle parked outside her apartment by slashing her tires and smashing her windshield. McDonald then left a note on her car, filled with racial slurs, threatening to slash her throat, and demanding she move out of West Allis. A week later, McDonald slashed two of her car tires and left another note filled with racial slurs and giving her an ultimatum – move out of the neighborhood or suffer violence. In April 2022, a Black woman and her two minor children moved into McDonald’s apartment complex. Shortly after they moved in, McDonald vandalized her front door with racial graffiti and left her a note, calling her family a racial slur and demanding she get out of the building.

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Wisconsin Statewide Unemployment Rate Hits New Record Low Of 2.7% In February, State Adds 7,500 Jobs In February

The Department of Workforce Development (DWD) today released the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) preliminary employment estimates for the month of February 2023, which showed Wisconsin's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate dropped to a record low of 2.7%.

In addition, total seasonally adjusted nonfarm jobs increased 7,500 over the month of February and 50,300 year-over-year to hit a new record high of 2,997,400. The total jobs number puts the state 3,400 jobs above pre-COVID-19 peaks.

Wisconsin's record low unemployment rate of 2.7% for February is down 0.2 percentage points from January's rate of 2.9% and beats the previous record low of 2.8% set in January through April of 2022. The state's labor force participation rate of 64.5% in February was unchanged from January. Nationwide for the month of February, the U.S. unemployment rate was 3.6% with a labor force participation rate of 62.5%.

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Last Update: Mar 24, 2023 6:51 am CDT

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