Morning Headlines - Wednesday, May 3, 2023

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

Morning Headlines - Wednesday, May 3, 2023

U.S. and World Headlines

CNN’s Trump Town Hall Reignites Debate Over Media Coverage

CNN’s decision to host a town hall with former President Trump has sparked fresh controversy around media coverage of the former president.

The network, which got into a mutually antagonistic relationship with Trump during his time in the White House, will host a New Hampshire town hall in primetime next Wednesday. CNN anchor Kaitlan Collins will moderate.

CNN came under fire almost as soon as the news of the event broke.

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What Shows Are Affected By The TV Writers' Strike?

The first TV and film writers' strike in 15 years kicked off Tuesday, and it's expected to bring production in the nation's entertainment center to a halt.

The impact of the strike could be far-reaching, depending on how long it takes for writers and studios to reach a deal. The last Hollywood strike, in 2007-2008, took three months to resolve.

With the 11,500 members of the Writers Guild of America working across film, TV, streaming and fiction podcasts, here's how the labor stoppage is expected to affect shows.

What shows are affected?

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More Than 100 Arrested Across Europe In Raids On Notorious Mafia Group

Police across Europe arrested more than 100 people Wednesday in a wave of raids against one of Italy’s most notorious organized crime groups.

The Carabinieri, a branch of Italian law enforcement, said that 108 people were served arrest warrants on charges including international drug trafficking, money laundering and possession of weapons.

Arrests were also carried out in Germany, Belgium, France, Portugal, Romania and Spain.

Authorities have been waging an intense campaign against the ’ndrangheta, arguably the world’s richest organized crime group, in recent years.

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Michigan School District Bans All Backpacks From School Buildings

A school district in Michigan has banned all backpacks from school buildings, in response to growing safety concerns.

Flint Community Schools announced last week that backpacks would be banned and the ban would be in place for the rest of the school year. The new policy went into effect on Monday.

"We are doing all that we can to create a safe and secure environment for our scholars, families, teachers and staff," Superintendent Kevin Jones wrote on the school district's website.

Jones cited growing threatening behavior happening across the country, including weapons being brought to schools, as the reason for the backpack ban.

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Fentanyl Overdose Death Rate Nearly Quadrupled From 2016 To 2021

The U.S. overdose death rate involving fentanyl nearly quadrupled between 2016 and 2021, according to a report published Wednesday.

The growing fentanyl crisis has spurred state and federal lawmakers to target the trafficking of the synthetic opioid, expand access to opioid overdose antidote Narcan, and decriminalize fentanyl test strips to use as a prevention tool.

Using death certificates via the National Vital Statistics System, the CDC report found overdose death rates involving oxycodone — an early driver of the opioid epidemic — continued to decline as the death rate from methamphetamine, cocaine and fentanyl increased.

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Wisconsin Headlines

Wisconsin Lawmakers Approve Opioid Settlement Payout

Wisconsin legislators decided May 2 to accept the state’s share of a settlement stemming from another multistate lawsuit accusing drug manufacturers and distributors of contributing to the nation’s opioid crisis.

A coalition of states and local governments secured settlements in November and December with opioid manufacturers Teva and Allergan as well as with pharmaceutical chains Walmart, Walgreens and CVS totaling $19.2 billion.

Wisconsin is in line to receive about $324.3 million, with 30% going to the state and 70% going to county governments. The Legislature’s Joint Finance Committee approved a motion to accept the money during a meeting on May 2.

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Madison Man Sentenced To 30 Months For Receiving Stolen Gun

Timothy M. O’Shea, United States Attorney for the Western District of Wisconsin, announced that Aidan Johnson, 20, Madison, Wisconsin, was sentenced today by Chief U.S. District Judge James D. Peterson to 30 months in federal prison for receiving a stolen firearm.  Johnson pleaded guilty to  this charge on March 14, 2023. This prison term will be followed by three years of supervised release.

On March 11, 2022, Johnson stole a Glock 19x from another person. Johnson possessed the firearm until June 3, 2022, when he was arrested. Throughout that period, Johnson posted photos and videos on social media of himself with the firearm.

In imposing the 30-month sentence, Judge Peterson balanced Johnson’s youth and potential with the dangers he posed to the community. Judge Peterson described the image that Johnson had been presenting throughout his social media as a “fantasy of this life dealing drugs” and “being a gangster.” In addressing Johnson, Judge Peterson stated that path “is not romantic or a way to have a good life.” Judge Peterson concluded his sentencing with the hope that Johnson finds a “peaceful, kind, and productive way of being in the community.”

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Attorney General Kaul Joins Multistate Coalition Opposing Restrictions To Title X Family Planning Program

Attorney General Josh Kaul joined a coalition of 24 states in support of reproductive healthcare provided by the Title X program, the sole federal program dedicated to family planning services. In an amicus brief, the coalition supported the Biden Administration’s appeal of a Texas court ruling that placed limitations on the Title X program’s provision of services to minors in Texas. In the amicus brief, the coalition argues imposing restrictions on the program would make it harder for vulnerable young people to seek and receive necessary medical care and could ultimately harm their health and safety.

“The district court’s ruling would lead to worse reproductive health outcomes,” said Attorney General Kaul. “The unjustified restriction the court imposed on the effective Title X program should be blocked.”

The Biden Administration is appealing a December 2022 ruling by U.S. District Court Judge for the Northern District of Texas Matthew Kacsmaryk in Deanda v. Becerra. The ruling prohibited the provision of Title X services to minors in Texas without parental consent.

In the amicus brief, the coalition of attorneys general supported the Biden Administration’s appeal, arguing that confidentiality plays a critical role in protecting adolescents’ access to Title X services.

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Arguments Set For Thursday In Lawsuit Over Wisconsin Abortion Ban

Oral arguments are set for Thursday morning as part of the latest step in a legal battle over Wisconsin's pre-Civil War abortion ban.

This week's hearing in Dane County Circuit Court comes as a Republican prosecutor seeks to dismiss a lawsuit that aims to restore abortion rights in Wisconsin.

Democratic Attorney General Josh Kaul filed the lawsuit last summer just days after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade. The U.S. Supreme Court's ruling reinstated Wisconsin's ban on all abortions except those done to save a pregnant person's life.

Kaul argues the 19th century abortion law shouldn't be enforced because it conflicts with newer state abortion laws. That includes a less restrictive law from 1985, which criminalizes providing an abortion only if it's done after the point of fetal viability.

In his motion to dismiss the suit, Sheboygan County District Attorney Joel Urmanski rejected the notion that Wisconsin's abortion laws are in conflict with each other and argued that Wisconsin's Department of Justice was trying to interfere with prosecutorial discretion. Urmanski, a Republican, has said previously he would enforce Wisconsin's abortion ban.

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Bill Would Allow 14-Year-Olds To Serve Alcohol In Wisconsin

A new bill proposed by Republican lawmakers is pushing to change the age limit for serving alcohol to fourteen years old. Currently, the age limit is 18 years old in our state.

A statement from Senator Rob Stafshol (R-New Richmond), who introduced the bill Monday, says reducing the age limit is a “simple solution” to resolve workforce shortage complications in the restaurant industry.

The bill clarifies the server would only be allowed to serve seated customers not those sitting at the bar. It also requires a licensed operator to supervise them.

Frank Harris with Mothers Against Drunk Driving says the proposal raises more questions than it solves. “This doesn’t pass any type of logical test,” he argues. “It’s not logical to allow 14-year-olds to sell alcohol in some shape or form, even with the workforce issues.”

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Last Update: May 03, 2023 6:21 am CDT

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