Morning Headlines - Tuesday, Apr. 4, 2023

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

Morning Headlines - Tuesday, Apr. 4, 2023

U.S. and World Headlines

How Trump's Date With History Will Play Out

A new chapter in American history will be written today when Donald Trump becomes the first former US president to appear in court facing criminal charges.

Trump's unprecedented journey will begin when he departs his Trump Tower penthouse in Midtown Manhattan at around 10.30am - closely guarded by his Secret Service detail - for an 11am arrival at District Attorney Alvin Bragg's office downtown.

Once inside and away from the glare of the world's media, the 76-year-old is expected to have his fingerprints taken but will likely avoid the humiliation of having to pose for a mugshot, according to reports last night.

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Richard Branson’s Virgin Orbit Files For Bankruptcy

Virgin Orbit, the rocket company founded by British billionaire Richard Branson, has filed for bankruptcy in the United States.

The California-based company said in a statement Monday that it had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, meaning that it can continue doing business while it restructures its debts.

“While we have taken great efforts to address our financial position and secure additional financing, we ultimately must do what is best for the business,” Dan Hart, chief executive of Virgin Orbit, said in the statement posted on its website.

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Finland Set To Join NATO, In Blow To Putin

Finland is set to officially become a member of NATO later on Tuesday and take its place among the ranks of the world’s biggest security alliance.

Neighboring Russia has already warned that it will bolster its defenses near their joint border if NATO deploys any additional troops or equipment to what will be its 31st member country.

Finland’s blue and white flag is scheduled to be raised among those of its partners outside NATO’s Brussels headquarters. Finland’s president, foreign and defense ministers will take part.

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Spy Balloon Sent Data To China In Real Time - Report

The Chinese balloon that flew over the US earlier this year managed to gather intelligence from military bases for days before it was shot down, US media report.

The balloon was able to transmit data to Beijing in real time, NBC News reported, citing US officials.

The craft picked up electronic signals rather than taking pictures, according to one official quoted by the network.

The White House didn't confirm the report.

But US officials say they managed to limit the balloon's intelligence-gathering abilities as it floated over the country.

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WWE And UFC Owner Endeavor Agree To Massive Merger

It's official: WWE and UFC will be under one house known as $TKO.

WWE and Endeavor announced Monday that the two public companies would combine in a deal valuing both companies at more than $21 billion. WWE is being valued at $9.3 billion, a more than 33% premium to the company's market cap on Friday, while UFC owner Endeavor is being valued at $12.1 billion.

Endeavor CEO Ari Emanuel will run the combined company as CEO, while WWE majority owner and Executive Chairman Vince McMahon is assuming the executive chairman role. WWE's Nick Khan will be the president of the wrestling brand alongside UFC president Dana White.

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Wisconsin Headlines

Wisconsin Supreme Court Poses High-Stakes Test For Democrats

The Wisconsin Supreme Court election on Tuesday will be Democrats’ first major test going into 2024 of whether the party can continue to galvanize voters over abortion rights and the fall of Roe v. Wade.

The race has been one of the most expensive and consequential this year, as the justices could weigh in on issues like abortion, redistricting and possible legal battles over contested election results. With conservative Justice Patience Roggensack’s retirement, Democrats also have the chance to secure a partisan majority in a key swing state.

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Wisconsin’s Record-Shattering Supreme Court Race Barrels To An End

The most expensive state judicial race in American history is coming to a fiery close: On Tuesday, Wisconsin voters will decide the future of abortion and other hot-button issues in a state at the center of the 2024 presidential election.

Conservatives currently hold a 4-3 majority on the state Supreme Court — an advantage that’s helped the right lock in power for the Republican-dominated legislature. But a win by the liberal judge on the ballot could provide a new check on the state GOP.

Spending in the race exploded and surpassed $45 million as of late last week, roughly tripling the previous state judicial race record.

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Wisconsin's April 4 Election: A Voter's Guide To Candidates, Issues

Wisconsinites are heading to the polls to weigh in on an open state Supreme Court seat, three statewide referendums and a host of local candidates.

Here's what voters need to know before they cast their ballots.

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Mega Donors Fuel Over $40 Million In Donations For Record-Shattering 2023 Wisconsin Supreme Court Race

Days before the Wisconsin Supreme Court election a major union representing transit workers wrote an $18,000 check to Milwaukee County Circuit Judge Janet Protasiewicz’s campaign.

For the Amalgamated Transit Union, which represents bus drivers and mechanics, it was a huge donation compared with their previous donation to a Wisconsin Supreme Court candidate in 2018 for just $250.

“There’s a lot on the line with the Supreme Court race here,” said Donnell Shorter, head of the ATU Local 998 in Milwaukee.

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Today's Election Could Weaken Conservatives' Long-Held Advantage In Wisconsin

For about a dozen years, Republican lawmakers have set Wisconsin's policies on everything from voting laws, to gun rights, to union restrictions; for the last decade, conservatives on the state Supreme Court have protected those Republican priorities.

That could all change as voters Tuesday decide one seat on Wisconsin's high court in the most expensive state supreme court race in United States history.

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Last Update: Apr 04, 2023 5:25 am CDT

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