Morning Headlines - Wednesday, Aug. 9, 2023

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

Morning Headlines - Wednesday, Aug. 9, 2023

U.S. and World Headlines

4 Takeaways From Abortion Rights Advocates’ Ohio Win

Abortion rights advocates on Tuesday won a critical victory in Ohio, beating back a measure that would have made their push to enshrine abortion rights in the state’s constitution more difficult.

CNN projected that voters in the state rejected a proposal known as Issue 1. Placed on the ballot during what’s ordinarily a sleepy August by Ohio’s Republican-controlled legislature, at the urging of Secretary of State and GOP Senate hopeful Frank LaRose, the proposal would have raised the threshold to pass constitutional amendments from a simple majority to a 60% vote. It was widely seen as a proxy battle over the proposed constitutional amendment guaranteeing abortion rights that will be on Ohio’s ballots in November.

Here are four takeaways from Ohio’s election:

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Winning Ticket In $1.58 Billion Mega Millions Jackpot Sold In Florida

Store clerks who have faced long lotto lines recently can rejoice: The $1.58 billion Mega Millions jackpot has been won, game officials said.

And whoever bought the single winning ticket in Florida for the potential record-setting jackpot can be happy, too.

A single jackpot-winning ticket was sold, game officials said. The estimated $1.58 billion jackpot is around $783.3 million cash before taxes, it said.

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A Simple Law Is Doing The Impossible. It’s Making The Online Porn Industry Retreat

On June 15, 2022, a freshman legislator in Louisiana’s House of Representatives accomplished something no other lawmaker or activist in the country could claim: She passed a law that is changing the online porn industry.

If you think this was the result of a bitter culture war battle, think again.

“Pornography is creating a public health crisis and having a corroding influence on minors,” asserts the bill that state Rep. Laurie Schlegel introduced. Almost no one in the capitol in Baton Rouge disputes the statement; the bill sailed through the Louisiana House 96-1 and the State Senate 34-0. The bill holds pornography websites liable unless the websites “perform reasonable age verification methods” — in short, requiring users to show government ID to prove they are 18 or older.

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Moody's Cuts Credit Ratings Of Ten US Banks And Warns Six More Could Face A Similar Fate

Wall Street's main stock indexes dropped on Tuesday, after Moody's slashed the credit ratings of several regional US banks and warned it may also downgrade some of the nation's biggest lenders.

The move came months after a banking crisis sent shockwaves through the financial sector this spring, when the nation witnessed the three biggest US lender failures since the 2008 financial crisis.

The banking sector has since appeared to stabilize, but Moody's new ratings moves rattled investors, and sent shares of the 'Big Four' US banks - JPMorgan, Bank of America, Citigroup and Wells Fargo - down between 0.56 percent and 1.9 percent on the day.

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LGBTQ+ Veterans File Civil Rights Suit Against Pentagon Over Discriminatory Discharges

A group of LGBTQ+ veterans who were kicked out of the military because of their sexual orientation filed a federal civil rights suit on Tuesday over the Defense Department's failure to grant them honorable discharges or remove biased language specifying their sexuality from their service records following the repeal of "don't ask, don't tell" in 2010.

The class action lawsuit, which was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California on behalf of five veterans, claims the Pentagon's failure to correct this "ongoing discrimination" represents a violation of constitutional rights.

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Wisconsin Headlines

A Longshot Republican Enters 2024 US Senate Race Against Baldwin

A longshot candidate for U.S. Senate in Wisconsin who has never run for office in the state before plans to launch her candidacy on Aug. 8, becoming the first Republican to officially get in the race against Democratic Sen. Tammy Baldwin.

Rejani Raveendran, a 40-year-old college student and chair of the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point College Republicans, planned to announce her candidacy for the 2024 election at an evening event in Stevens Point, according to her campaign.

Several other higher-profile Republicans have decided against taking on Baldwin as she seeks a third term in a presidential election year. U.S. Reps. Mike Gallagher and Tom Tiffany have both opted against a run.

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Wisconsin Man Sentenced To 11 Years For Possessing Cocaine For Distribution

Depronce Burnett, 39, Beloit, Wisconsin, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge William M. Conley to 11 years in federal prison for possessing with intent to distribute 500 grams or more of cocaine. This prison term will be followed by a 4-year term of supervised release. Burnett pleaded guilty to this charge on May 11, 2023.

In the fall of 2021, Burnett distributed cocaine and methamphetamine in Rock County, Wisconsin, primarily out of his home in Beloit. Even after his arrest by the Beloit Police Department on September 30, 2021, Burnett directed the further sale of cocaine and methamphetamine from the jail by calling his wife, Dominque Holsten. The sales continued until police executed search warrants at their Beloit home on October 27, 2021. During the search, officers found hidden stashes of illegal narcotics, including more than 900 grams of cocaine and over 500 grams of methamphetamine, in addition to $87,000 in U.S. currency.

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Covid-19 Cases On The Rise In Wisconsin As Summer Winds Down

The number of COVID-19 cases has been growing in Wisconsin as summer winds down, according to state data.

The Wisconsin State Laboratory of Hygiene at the University of Wisconsin-Madison reported by the end of July the percentage of positive COVID-19 tests was at 8.4 percent, nearly double when compared to the 4.4 percent recorded for the for the week ending July 1.

The timing is not unexpected. Doctors say throughout the pandemic cases seem to rise in late summer and early fall.

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State Board Approves Loan For Northern Wisconsin Town Affected By Tribal Tax Ruling

A northern Wisconsin town has been granted a $610,000 loan by the state public lands board to ease financial challenges resulting from a federal court ruling that removed tribal residents from the tax rolls.

Last summer, a federal appeals court ruled the state could no longer tax tribal properties on reservation lands of four northern Wisconsin tribes. The decision stems from a federal lawsuit brought by those tribes in 2018, including the Bad River Band of Lake Superior Chippewa.

The tribes argued their members were immune to state taxation for all time under the 1854 treaty that set aside their reservations, saying taxation threatened their involuntary removal in the event of foreclosure. The state had unsuccessfully argued that tribal properties could be taxed if they had ever fallen out of tribal ownership.

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The New Liberal Majority On The Wisconsin Supreme Court Is Off To A Tense Start

When liberal Judge Janet Protasiewicz won a seat on the Wisconsin Supreme Court this year, giving liberals their first majority in 15 years, it put an end to the bitterest and most expensive state Supreme Court race in U.S. history.

But when Protasiewicz was sworn in last week, formally tipping the ideological balance of the court to the left, tensions on the bench erupted anew into public view.

First, the court’s nascent liberal majority fired a longtime court officer. The move triggered blistering blowback from the new conservative minority — and quickly led to days of rancorous news releases and tweets from the justices, trading insults and accusations of partisanship.

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Last Update: Aug 09, 2023 6:26 am CDT

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