Morning Headlines - Thursday, Aug. 3, 2023

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

Morning Headlines - Thursday, Aug. 3, 2023

U.S. and World Headlines

Gravity Of New Trump Charges Scrambles GOP Politics

The indictment brought against former President Trump for trying to halt the transfer of presidential power in 2021 has been met with somber silence from many Republican senators, who view the new charges as more serious than the previous felony counts faced by Trump.

The four new charges unveiled by special counsel Jack Smith on Tuesday focus on Trump’s actions in the lead-up to the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol, which prompted seven Senate Republicans to vote in February 2021 to convict him on the impeachment charge of inciting an insurrection.

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Devon Archer's Full Congress Testimony Is Released

Hunter Biden's ex-business partner Devon Archer told Congress that Joe Biden's 'brand' protected Burisma from 'pressure' and the then-vice president's intimidating influence directly led to his son receiving huge sums of foreign money - and a $142,300 Porche.

According to the full transcript of his testimony obtained by DailyMail.com on Thursday, Archer said that then-Vice President Joe Biden's 'brand' protected Ukranian oil company Burisma because 'people would be intimidated to mess with them.'

He confirmed that Hunter put Joe on speakerphone 20 times over a 10 year period, which was a 'signal' of 'value,' and Hunter used his dad as a 'defensive leverage.'

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Ron DeSantis Agrees To Debate Gavin Newsom On Fox News

Govs. Ron DeSantis and Gavin Newsom have tentatively agreed to debate — one hosted by Fox News.

The Florida Republican and California Democrat have repeatedly sparred over policies in their respective states, each representing one side of the ideological spectrum though occupying different political perches. DeSantis, a Republican, is trailing former President Donald Trump for the Republican presidential nomination while Newsom, a Democrat, has brushed aside questions about his own presidential ambitions to become a super surrogate of sorts for President Joe Biden.

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Doctors Say Insurers Are Ignoring Orders To Pay Surprise Billing Disputes

Insurers are sometimes ignoring rulings to pay providers, or failing to pay them in full, under the arbitration system established by the new federal surprise billing law, providers tell Axios.

The No Surprises Act, a bipartisan effort to limit unexpected out-of-network medical bills, required that insurers and providers undergo an independent arbitration process to settle their differences without involving patients. The complaints from providers are the latest snag with the arbitration system that launched last year.

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IRS Says New Paperless Processing Initiative Will Allow For Faster Refunds

The Internal Revenue Service is looking to go paperless.

The federal tax collection agency announced plans Wednesday to allow taxpayers to submit correspondence and non-tax forms online starting next tax season and to file all returns digitally by the 2025 filing season in a paperless initiative it says will ramp up efficiency, accuracy, and enable Americans to receive their tax refunds sooner.

Taxpayers are currently able to submit annual 1040 tax returns digitally, but beyond that, nearly all correspondence with the IRS must be done through regular mail.

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Wisconsin Headlines

County Jail Officer Staffing In Wisconsin Has Fallen To A 'Crisis Level'

The Marathon County Jail can hold up to 279 inmates. But the county is so short on correctional officers that it is paying other jails to house some of its prisoners. On July 25, the county had 131 inmates in its facility, and 117 elsewhere.

“We don’t have enough staff to watch them,” said Marathon County Sheriff Chad Billeb, who oversees the jail. “In a nutshell, there is a major issue. And it’s not just Marathon County. It’s jails across the state.”

“It’s become almost a crisis level,” he added.

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Harris Visits Wisconsin Today To Tout Broadband Investments, Raise Campaign Funds

Vice President Kamala Harris will be in Wisconsin today for her fourth visit to the state since taking office.

Harris will start with a tour of Sanmina in Pleasant Prairie to highlight the administration’s investment in broadband infrastructure. She’ll be joined by Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo and U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin, D-Madison.

The visit comes as Nokia announced this morning it will partner with Sanmina to manufacture broadband network electronics at the Pleasant Prairie plant, creating up to 200 new jobs. Nokia, a Finnish telecom equipment company, said the fiber-optic broadband network electronics products and optical modules will be for use in the Broadband Equity, Access and Deployment program.

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On Its First Day With Liberal Majority, Wisconsin Supreme Court Fires Administrator

One day after the swearing-in of Janet Protasiewicz swung the Wisconsin Supreme Court to a liberal majority, the high court has fired Randy Koschnick, the director of the state's courts system.

The move invited a strong condemnation from Chief Justice Annette Ziegler, a conservative, who described it as "dangerous conduct" that the full court did not agree to.

"Allowing all seven justices the opportunity to be heard and having the benefit of thoughtful discussion and debate before a formal vote is taken is key to a properly functioning court," Ziegler wrote.

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Far Left Wastes No Time In Push To Overturn Wisconsin Legislative Maps

Just hours after Justice Protasiewicz was inaugurated, left-leaning groups filed an original action petition asking the Supreme Court to throw out the current legislative maps and redraw the lines based on provisions in state law.

The case was expected and comes about a year and a half after the current maps were put in place. Let’s do a quick recap of how we got here.

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WisDOT Sec. Thompson Makes Deputy Secretary Announcement

Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) Secretary Craig Thompson announced today his appointment of Kristina Boardman as the agency’s next deputy secretary.

Boardman becomes WisDOT’s first female deputy secretary after serving as the administrator of WisDOT’s Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) since 2016. As chief operating officer, she will oversee the department’s operations which includes 3,200 employees, dozens of field offices and a biennial budget of more than $8 billion.

Boardman replaces outgoing Deputy Secretary Paul Hammer, who is leaving the department to become deputy secretary at the Wisconsin Department of Administration.

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Last Update: Aug 03, 2023 9:03 am CDT

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