Morning Headlines - Thursday, Mar. 7, 2024

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

Morning Headlines - Thursday, Mar. 7, 2024

U.S. and World Headlines

Democrats Pin 2024 Hopes And Fears On Biden's State Of The Union

Democratic lawmakers tell Axios that President Biden's State of the Union performance on Thursday will be pivotal for his attempts to dispel voter concerns about his age.

Some Democrats dread a high-profile senior moment. Others expressed confidence that Biden can repeat last year's energetic performance. "We are all nervous," said one House Democrat, citing concerns about the 81-year-old Biden's "ability to speak without blowing things."

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House Approves Spending Package To Avert Shutdown

The House on Wednesday approved a package of six spending bills, sending the legislation to the Senate days ahead of Friday’s partial government shutdown deadline.

The “minibus” — which funds a slew of programs and agencies through the end of fiscal 2024 - cleared the House in an 339-85 vote, with 207 Democrats and 132 Republicans throwing their support behind the measure.

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‘Rust’ Movie Armorer Found Guilty Of Involuntary Manslaughter, Acquitted Of Evidence Tampering

Hannah Gutierrez Reed, the “Rust” film armorer, was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter Wednesday in a New Mexico trial stemming from the 2021 on-set fatal shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins, who was killed by a live round of ammunition fired from a prop gun that was held by actor Alec Baldwin.

Gutierrez Reed, who was responsible for firearm safety and storage on the movie’s set, was acquitted of a separate charge of evidence tampering, which was brought after prosecutors alleged she transferred a “small bag of cocaine” to someone else after a police interview on the day of the shooting on October 21, 2021.

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February 2024 Was The Hottest On Record

The world has marked yet another consecutive month of record-breaking heat. New data from Copernicus, the European Union's climate change monitoring service, shows that last month was the hottest February on record globally, with "exceptionally high" temperatures in both the air and sea.

The record heat comes as the U.S. continues to battle weather extremes.

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A Quarter Of US Adults Want Their State To Secede

Calls for Texas to secede from the US are growing louder, with advocates saying it could then stop migrant flows from Mexico without being hamstrung by the federal government.

The Lone Star state may have the country's noisiest secessionist movement, but it is not the most popular.

That label goes to Alaska, a new survey shows.

Researchers found that more than a third of Alaskans — 36 percent — want the Last Frontier to call it a day and leave the union.

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Wisconsin Headlines

Wisconsin Lawmakers Claim More Than $1.4 Million In Per Diems

Lawmakers spent more time in the Capitol than they did two years ago as per diems were up in 2023 compared to the last time they hammered out a budget, according to records from the chief clerks offices.

In all, lawmakers claimed more than $1.4 million in 2023 for 12,890 days. By comparison, they claimed less than $1.2 million in 2021 for 11,468 days as both numbers took a dip from 2019 with the Capitol still getting back to its normal rhythm after the COVID-19 pandemic.

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VP Harris Announces Federal Apprenticeship Program During Madison Visit

During the latest of a series of Biden administration stops in Wisconsin, Vice President Kamala Harris announced an apprenticeship program for the federal workforce while in Madison Wednesday.

Harris spoke at a construction site that will eventually house the city’s fleet of electric buses. The city broke ground on the site just three weeks ago with the help of roughly $13 million in federal funding from President Joe Biden’s infrastructure act.

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Medical Examiner Says Two Wisconsin Inmates Died Of Fentanyl Overdose, Stroke

Two of the four inmates found dead at Waupun Correctional Institution since June died of a drug overdose and a stroke, a medical examiner said Wednesday. Tyshun Lemons, 30, was found dead at the prison on Oct. 2. Cameron Williams, 24, was found dead there on Oct. 30.

Dodge County Medical Examiner PJ Schoebel said in a telephone interview that Lemons overdosed on acetyl fentanyl, a potent opioid painkiller. He has ruled Lemons' death accidental.

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Second Man Sentenced For Murder Of Dodgeville, Wis. Woman

The Wisconsin Department of Justice today announced that Philip G. Schmidt-Way, 29, of Loveland, Colo., was sentenced to life with the ability to petition for extended supervision after 20 years for the murder of his grandmother in Dodgeville, Wis. on July 19, 2021.

Last month co-defendant Aric Way, father to Schmidt-Way, was sentenced to life in prison without parole for his role in the homicide. In Mr. Schmidt-Way’s proceeding, the sentencing court described Aric Way as the mastermind.

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Evers Signs UW Construction Bill That's Part Of Diversity Deal With Republican Lawmakers

Democratic Gov. Tony Evers signed a bill that authorizes spending hundreds of millions of dollars on Universities of Wisconsin construction and renovation projects.

The governor signed the bill privately on the morning of March 6. The measure is part of a deal Republican lawmakers cut with UW regents in December that limits diversity positions across the UW system in exchange for money to cover staff pay raises and construction projects.

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Last Update: Mar 07, 2024 5:15 am CST

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