Morning Headlines - Monday, Aug. 29, 2022

U.S. & World and Wisconsin trending headlines, and today's daily meme.

Morning Headlines - Monday, Aug. 29, 2022

U.S. and World Headlines

Christians In Afghanistan Face Routine Torture, Persecution From Family Members: Watchdog Groups

Christians who remain in Afghanistan in the wake of the Taliban's takeover face routine torture and persecution from both the government and their own friends, families and communities, according to humanitarian and watchdog groups.

"There are still Christians in Afghanistan," said Todd Nettleton, an author and radio host who works for the international humanitarian nonprofit Voice of the Martyrs. "I think during the time of the Taliban takeover a year ago, there was a lot of coverage that kind of suggested that all the Christians had fled the country."

As the Afghan government crumbled last year, many Christians did flee because they knew the Taliban's hard-line theology and intolerance toward Christians, especially those who had converted from Islam. Many who were widely known to have renounced Islam for Christianity escaped to other countries, he said, but the potentially thousands of Christians who remain face profound challenges.

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GOP Seat Lead Shrinks As Biden Approval Ticks Up

Republicans head into the fall still in position to gain enough House seats for a majority, but a tumultuous summer has made their advantage appear a little smaller today — with a trend so far pointing toward narrow gains instead of a wave. The CBS News Battleground Tracker estimates Republicans at 226 seats today, down from 230 estimated in July. A majority of 218 is needed to win control.

While Republicans continue to lead with people who prioritize the economy, at least three things are tempering their overall advantage.

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Biden Administration To Stop Sending Free At-home Covid-19 Tests Friday

The government will end its giveaway of Covid-19 at-home tests Friday because of insufficient congressional funding, a senior Biden administration official said Sunday.

A stockpile of the tests is being depleted, and officials want to have enough on hand in the event of a fall surge, the source said.

The giveaway, which includes tests mailed at no cost to recipients who request them at Covidtests.gov, will end Friday, according to an announcement on the site — unless there's a surprise round of funding from Congress, the source said.

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Truth Social's Ugly Truth

Truth Social, the app launched by Donald Trump as a free speech platform for conservatives, is facing serious financial and legal stress at it tries to survive.

The app is the former president's biggest business venture since leaving office — and his best effort to create an alternative populist megaphone to amplify his political brand after being banned from Twitter.

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Launch Day Arrives For NASA’s Artemis I Mission That Will Journey Around The Moon

It’s a day that has been years in the making. Launch day has finally arrived for the uncrewed Artemis I mission to liftoff on a journey around the moon. Tune in to NASA’s website and TV channel to watch the final preparations and witness the launch.

Appearances by celebrities like Jack Black, Chris Evans and Keke Palmer and performances of “The Star-Spangled Banner” by Josh Groban and Herbie Hancock and “America the Beautiful” by The Philadelphia Orchestra and cellist Yo-Yo Ma are also part of the program.

It’s a sight to behold as the 322-foot-tall (98-foot-tall) stack, consisting of the Space Launch System rocket and Orion spacecraft, glows in the early morning darkness at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

Weather conditions remain 80% favorable for a launch at the beginning of a window that opens at 8:33 a.m. and closes at 10:33 a.m. ET, according to the latest forecast.

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Wisconsin Headlines

Tim Michels Raised More Than Any Other Republican Statewide Candidate Or Officeholder In Wisconsin

Wisconsin Republican statewide candidates and officeholders have raised $23.3 million during the 2022 election cycle. Among statewide officials and candidates, Tim Michels has raised more than any other Republican.

Michels is running for Governor of Wisconsin in 2022. Michels raised $12.0 million and spent $10.6 million between Jan. 1, 2021, and July 25, 2022. According to Wisconsin Ethics Commission reports, the following individual donors and PACs gave the most money to Michels.

Of the $12.0 million in reported donations to Tim Michels’ candidate committee, $11.9 million of those contributions came from Tim Michels.

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EPA Waives Fuel Rule In Wisconsin, 3 Other States After Refinery Fire

The Environmental Protection Agency temporarily lifted a federal rule for fuel sales in four states, including Wisconsin, in response to a fire last week at an Indiana oil refinery that could affect prices and supply.

The emergency waiver was granted Saturday for Indiana, Illinois, Michigan and Wisconsin, EPA Administrator Michael Regan said. In a letter to state officials, Regan said the agency determined the waiver is necessary "to minimize or prevent disruption of an adequate supply of gasoline to consumers."

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Invasive Spotted Lanternfly Expected To Arrive In Wisconsin, Insect Expert Says

A new invasive insect is moving across the nation toward Wisconsin, with one expert saying it’s only a matter of time before it reaches the state.

Native to China, the spotted lanternfly first showed up in Pennsylvania in 2014. It has since been found in 12 states. The U.S. Department of Agriculture says the species "could seriously impact the country’s grape, orchard and logging industries" if it continues to spread.

Economists from Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences estimate the spotted lanternfly could cost their state’s economy at least $324 million annually and about 2,800 jobs.

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'Everything Is Different Here': Afghans Living In Wisconsin Reflect On 1 Year Since Fleeing Their Homes

Farahnaz Asghari lives in Appleton with her husband and three-year-old son. Every morning, she video chats with her family back in Afghanistan. It’s been about a year since she last saw them.

"I cannot start my day without talking with my family members. Actually, there is a 10-hour time gap between here and their country. So in the morning for me, it's at night for them," Asghari said. "It helps me a lot. It makes me so happy to be able to at least talk to them, if I cannot see them for a long time."

Asghari left Afghanistan with her husband and child last September, shortly after the Taliban seized control of the country’s capital Kabul and the last of the U.S. military withdrew on August 30, 2021.

But for Asghari and most other Afghan refugees, leaving their home country was just the beginning of a months-long process to resettle in the United States. Now one year later, many are still navigating life in their new country.

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Wisconsin Badgers Weekly Recruiting Rundown

Just a week away from the football team's first game against Illinois State, recruiting news is still trickling in for the Wisconsin football and men's basketball teams. 

The basketball team is still building relationships with some of their top overall targets, while the football team is evaluating film with high school football underway across the country. 

In an attempt to provide an overview of everything that happened during the past seven days, here is the weekly recruiting rundown.

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Last Update: Aug 29, 2022 5:28 am CDT

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