Trump announces new sanctions on Iran, including on supreme leader

WORLD NEWS Trump announces new sanctions on Iran, including on supreme leader

SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — President Donald Trump on Monday announced new “hard-hitting” sanctions on Iran, including on the country’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

Trump signed an executive order imposing additional sanctions on Iran late Monday morning, as he promised to do on Friday after pulling back on a military strike against Iran for the shooting down of a U.S. military drone.

The president said the order, which also targets other senior leaders of Iran’s regime, was prompted by a series of “aggressive behaviors” by the regime in recent weeks, including the drone shootdown.

 The president said the U.S. “does not seek conflict with Iran,” but added that the sanctions “will deny the supreme leader and the supreme leader’s office and those closely affiliated with him and the office access to key resources and support.”

“They’ve done many other things aside from the individual drone. You saw the tankers and we know of other things that were done also which were not good and not appropriate,” Trump said. “The supreme leader of Iran is one who ultimately is responsible for the hostile conduct of the regime. He is respected within his country. His office oversees the regime’s most brutal instruments.”

Last July, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that Khamenei has “his own personal, off-the-books hedge fund called the Setad, worth $95 billion, with a B.”

“That wealth is untaxed, it is ill-gotten, and it is used as a slush fund for the IRGC,” Pompeo said last summer. “The ayatollah fills his coffers by devouring whatever he wants.”

“The assets of Ayatollah (Khamenei) and his office will not be spared by the sanctions,” Trump said Monday. “We will continue to increase pressure on Tehran until the regime abandons its dangerous pursuits, including nuclear weapons, enrichment of uranium, engagement in and support for terrorism, fueling of foreign conflicts, and belligerent acts against the United States and its allies.”

 Trump once again called the Iran nuclear agreement “a disaster,” complaining that it was “so short term” that within years Iran would be able to make nuclear weapons.

“That’s unacceptable. Never can Iran have a nuclear weapon,” he said.

The sanctions also target eight senior commanders of Navy, Aerospace, and Ground Forces of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps, known as the IRGC, which is suspected of carrying out multiple attacks in the Strait of Hormuz this month.

“I look forward to the day when sanctions can be finally lifted and Iran can become a peaceful, prosperous and productive nation,” Trump said. “I can only tell you we cannot ever let Iran have a nuclear weapon.”

Trump signed the order in the Oval Office flanked by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Vice President Mike Pence.

“I think a lot of restraint has been shown by us but that doesn’t mean we’re going to show it in the future,” Trump said.

After signing the executive order, Trump said he would “love” to negotiate a deal with Iran “if they want to” but said if Iran does not want to, “that’s fine, too.”

Asked whether the sanctions are in direct response to Iran shooting down the U.S. drone last week, Trump said “probably,” adding, “this is basically something that was going to happen anyway.”

“My only message is that he has the potential to have a great country and quickly, very quickly. And I think they should do that rather than going along this very destructive path,” Trump said. “We can’t let them have a nuclear weapon. He said he doesn’t want nuclear weapons. A great thing to say but a lot of things have been said over the years and turns out not to be so.”

After Trump spoke, Mnuchin appeared in the White House briefing room and said the sanctions would also hit the commander of Iran’s air force, who he said is responsible for the shooting down of the unmanned, U.S. surveillance aircraft last week. He said the sanctions would affect multiple other top officials in Iran’s “chain of command” and would lock up billions more in Iranian assets.

He defended sanctions against Iran as “highly effective” and said that while sanctions were already in the works, additional measures were added after recent attacks by Tehran. He signaled that Iran’s Foreign Minister Zarif would also face additional sanctions later this week.

Mnuchin was asked if the new sanctions indicate that the Iranian strike of a U.S. military drone was, in fact, intentional.

“I wouldn’t read anything into that,” Mnuchin replied. “The executive order that the president signed was in the works previously. These actions are people who have either made threats or specific things and again I don’t think you should interpret this anywhere otherwise other than we are designating people who we believe were responsible for the chain of command, whether they knew it or not.”

The secretary defended the sanctions against criticism that they are largely symbolic and do not have any real teeth, especially after Iran’s recent attacks on a U.S. drone and oil tankers in the Strait of Hormuz.

“There is no question, these sanctions have been very effective in cutting off funds,” Mnuchin said. “When we do sanctions, we do intelligence. We follow the money and it’s highly effective.”

“We have sanctions against bad behavior and there is no question that locking this money up worked last time, and there is no question locking the money works now,” he said.

Trump tweeted earlier Monday that the United States is not being fairly compensated for protecting shipping lanes in the Strait of Hormuz and questioned the United States’ role in providing security in the important maritime region.

 The Strait of Hormuz is one of the most important waterways in the world, as it is responsible for being the shipping gateway for 21 percent of global oil and petroleum products. But it has also been a hot spot for tensions between the United States and Iran. Last month, the Trump administration blamed Iran for attacks on oil tankers in the Strait of Hormuz and then last week, Iranians shot down an American drone outside the narrow passageway in the Gulf of Oman.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo landed in Saudi Arabia on Monday and tweeted following a meeting with the Saudi King that they discussed “heightened tensions in the region and the need to promote maritime security in the Strait of Hormuz.”

“The Supreme Leader’s Office has enriched itself at the expense of the Iranian people,” Pompeo wrote in a statement shortly after Trump signed the executive order imposing the sanctions. “It sits atop a vast network of tyranny and corruption that deprives the Iranian people of the freedom and opportunity they deserve. Today’s action denies Iran’s leadership the financial resources to spread terror and oppress the Iranian people.”

Pompeo noted that “the only path forward” is for Iran “to negotiate a comprehensive deal that addresses the full range of its destabilizing behaviors.”

“Until it does, our campaign of diplomatic isolation and maximum economic pressure will continue,” Pompeo pledged. “When the Iranian regime decides to forgo violence and meet our diplomacy with diplomacy, it knows how to reach us.”

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 24 Jun 2019

ABC’s Robin Roberts to host primetime special on legacy of ‘The Lion King’

Entertainment News  ABC's Robin Roberts to host primetime special on legacy of 'The Lion King'


Rock’n Robin Productions(LOS ANGELES) — Before the new film hits theaters, The Lion King is getting its own primetime special on ABC.

Robin Roberts is set to host The Lion King: Can You Feel the Love Tonight, exploring the franchise’s long-lasting appeal and giving a sneak peek into the upcoming film.

The special will include interviews with director Jon Favreau and members of the cast, including Donald Glover, Seth Rogen, Billy Eichner, Alfre Woodard and Chiwetel Ejiofor. Roberts will also take viewers on a behind-the-scenes visit to the studios where the new film is currently being readied for theaters, and preview an exclusive unreleased scene.

The voice actors from the original 1994 animated Lion King — including Whoopi Goldberg, Matthew Broderick and Jeremy Irons – will also participate in the special, along with Elton John, who co-wrote and performed songs in the original film and who contributes a new song to the new film.

“The legacy of The Lion King is absolutely incredible, and I’m excited to give fans a special look at this iconic film,” Roberts says in a statement.

“It’s a dazzling glimpse into what it takes to bring The Lion King to life in its many forms and how meaningful it has become for the cast members of both the original and new film, as well as Broadway and music legends.”

The Lion King: Can You Feel The Love Tonight with Robin Roberts airs Tuesday, July 16 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.
The Lion King, featuring CGI animation, hits theaters July 19.

Disney is the parent company of ABC News.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 24 Jun 2019

Trump dismisses Khashoggi investigation, Pompeo doesn’t raise it in Saudi meeting

WORLD NEWS Trump dismisses Khashoggi investigation, Pompeo doesn't raise it in Saudi meeting

Sarah Silbiger/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — The murder of Washington Post Jamal Khashoggi did not come up in Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s meeting with the Saudi king on Monday, according to a senior State Department official.

It’s the latest sign that the Trump administration has dropped the issue and tried to move past the brutal killing for the sake of what it says is a critical economic and security partnership.

President Donald Trump was dismissive on Friday of Khashoggi, the Saudi dissident who resided in Virginia, when he said that he did not raise a new United Nations report on the murder in his conversation with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman Friday.

“I think it’s been heavily investigated. … By everybody,” Trump told NBC News in an interview.

U.N. special investigator Agnes Callamard released a report on Wednesday that found Khashoggi’s killing was perpetrated at the highest levels of the Saudi Arabian power structure and requires further investigation of Saudi leadership, including the crown prince.

Khashoggi was killed inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, Turkey, last October — an act that the Saudi government at first denied, then called a mistake and finally blamed on a rogue operation. The hit team has been on trial in Saudi Arabia, although Callamard’s report criticized that judicial process as lacking transparency.

Pompeo met both the crown prince and his father King Salman in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, on Monday. In a brief 15-minute meeting, Khashoggi’s killing and other human rights abuses in the country did not come up, according to the senior official, who said they did not know whether it was raised in Pompeo’s one-on-one meeting with the crown prince, who is sometimes referred to by his initials “MBS.” A readout of both meetings by the State Department spokesperson also made no mention of Khashoggi or broader human rights abuses.

Those abuses were well documented in two State Department reports released last week — one on human trafficking and child soldiers and the other on international religious freedom. Both reports labeled Saudi Arabia as among the worst offenders on these issues.

Pompeo, who has consistently defended the Saudi leadership and said that the U.S. has to continue to investigate Khashoggi’s killing, was traveling to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates Monday to bolster both partners against the threat from Iran.

Both he and Trump have made clear that the Saudis are critical strategic partners against Iranian activity in the region, including as a customer of U.S. arms.

“Saudi Arabia is a big buyer of America product. That means something to me. It’s a big producer of jobs,” Trump said.

He denied giving the Saudis a pass on “bad behavior,” but argued it was nothing out of the ordinary.

“This is a vicious, hostile place. If you’re going to look at Saudi Arabia, look at Iran, look at other countries,” he said.

The only difference, he suggested, was that they purchase U.S. weapons: “I only say they spend $400 to $450 billion over a period of time — all money, all jobs, buying equipment … Take their money.”

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 24 Jun 2019

WNBA star Candace Parker on the strong women who influenced her and the NBA Awards

Sports News WNBA star Candace Parker on the strong women who influenced her and the NBA Awards

Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images(NEW YORK) — WNBA star Candace Parker is outspoken about the women who have influenced not just on the court, but off it, too.

One of the most prominent of those influences was late college basketball coaching legend Pat Summitt, who Parker played under for four years at the University of Tennessee.

On Monday night at the 2019 NBA Awards, Parker will honor another strong woman, who was a dear friend of her role model Summit, with the 2019 Sager Strong Award. This award is given to “an individual who has been a trailblazer while exemplifying courage, faith, compassion and grace.”

That 2019 honoree and close friend is none other than “Good Morning America” co-anchor, Robin Roberts.

“For four years and beyond Coach Summitt spoke about Robin Roberts in the highest words that you could describe somebody,” Parker said. “To be able to present this award to her really means a lot to me and I know it would mean a lot to Coach Summitt.”

Being impacted by strong female role models

Since the WNBA wasn’t around for most of Parker’s childhood, she says looked up to athletes in other sports who showed her the type of athlete she wished to become.

“Women’s soccer, and even the Magnificent Seven gymnasts put women’s sports, for my generation, on the map,” Parker said. “It was really cool to go out and pretend you were Dominque Dawes or Dominque Moceanu or Mia Hamm.”

Now, Parker is quite the influential woman herself. The WNBA star has two NCAA championships, one WNBA championship and two Olympic gold medals under her belt.

Parker broke barriers as the first woman to dunk in an NCAA tournament game and the first player to dunk multiple times in their WNBA career. On top of her success as a basketball player, she has now stepped into the booth as a commentator for ESPN.

While the list of Parker’s jobs and accomplishments is extensive, her purpose, she said, is being a mother to 10-year-old Lailaa.

Finding balance with basketball and motherhood

When Parker got pregnant shortly after she became a professional basketball player, she had the same concerns as many working moms. She worried that she would have to sacrifice one for the other, whether it giving up her love of basketball or giving up being a present mother.

That’s when, she said, Summitt stepped up to help her not only develop as an athlete, but as a mother.

“She basically showed me that you can have both. You can have a family and you can have a career and you can give to both,” Parker said. “That was huge for me, being able to see her do that as a role model.”

Parker said finding the balance came from realizing she needed both her love of basketball and love for her daughter for her own happiness.

“We’re better when we’re happy with ourselves,” Parker said. “Everybody has mom guilt. I feel so guilty when I leave my child. But she understands that in order to be the best mom to her I have to be happy. It’s OK to continue to make yourself happy.”

Working to raise a strong woman

While her views of happiness have changed since having Lailaa, so has her purpose. Parker said being a strong female athlete is now “greater than me.”

As Lailaa grows, Parker hopes to not only be a role model for her daughter herself, but surround her the same types influential women who helped her be the person she is today.

“My daughter has grown up around so many strong, independent, free-thinking women that I don’t think she understands the limitations that are put on her. She doesn’t feel them,” Parker said.

“I want her to keep this little sliver of innocence,” she continued. “If you didn’t feel that you couldn’t do something or someone was limiting you or putting you in a box, imagine the amount of things that you could do.”

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 24 Jun 2019

Pelosi to Trump: Planned deportation raids ‘scaring’ children

Political News Pelosi to Trump: Planned deportation raids 'scaring' children

jetcityimage/iStock(WASHINGTON) — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Monday said she told President Trump he was “scaring the children” with his administration’s planned deportation raids across the country.

“When I spoke to the president, ‘I said look, I’m a mom, I have five kids, seven, nine grandchildren and children are scared, you’re scaring the children of America, not just in those families but their neighbors and their communities,” Pelosi said at an event in Queens, New York, about her Friday evening phone call with the president.

A source familiar with the phone call between Pelosi and Trump said the call took place at 7:20 p.m. Friday evening and lasted for about 12 minutes.

On Saturday, Trump tweeted that he would delay the Immigration and Customs Enforcement raids for two weeks to give Congress time to “work out a solution to the Asylum and Loophole problems at the Southern Border.”

 ICE planned to target more than 2,040 undocumented immigrant family members who had received deportation orders but were still living across the United States, an unprecedented show of force in 10 cities to deter families from attempting to enter the United States illegally.

“This is not about fear,” ICE Acting Director Mark Morgan told ABC News Live in an interview on Friday. “No one is instilling fear in anyone. This is about the rule of law and maintaining the integrity of the system.”

Morgan said the goal was to deter more people from coming illegally to the United States. Of the roughly 144,000 migrants stopped by U.S. authorities in May, more than 105,000 came as families. The numbers represent the largest North American land migration trend in more than a decade.

This week, the House and Senate will vote on emergency spending proposals that would provide the Trump administration with $4.5 billion in border security and humanitarian aid.

But with each chamber voting on a different package – neither of which addresses asylum laws – it’s unclear if lawmakers can reconcile the proposals and send a compromise to the White House before next week’s July Fourth recess – and the president’s July 6 deadline.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 24 Jun 2019

Fury unleashed: Samuel L. Jackson calls out Sony for Nick Fury eye patch blunder

Entertainment News  Fury unleashed: Samuel L. Jackson calls out Sony for Nick Fury eye patch blunder


Jay Maidment(LOS ANGELES) — Sony Pictures has some major explaining to do to Marvel Cinematic Universe star Samuel L. Jackson.

On Monday, Jackson, who’s portrayed S.H.I.E.L.D director Nick Fury since 2008’s Iron Man, took to Instagram to go off on a major blunder that Sony made in its ad campaign for Spider-Man: Far From Home.

In his post, Jackson shares an image of two side-by-side Homecoming posters that feature his Nick Fury character. However, in the poster on the left, Fury is wearing his signature eye patch on the wrong eye.

“Uhhhhhhh, What In The Actual F*** IS GOING ON HERE???!!! he captions the photo, adding the hashtags #headsgonroll #lefteyemuthafukkah.

Humorous as it may be, this isn’t the first time that there’s been a marketing blunder when it came to a Marvel superhero film.

In March, Marvel had to fix its Avengers: Endgame poster when Black Panther star Danai Gurira’s name was omitted. Of course, fans had plenty to say to Marvel when that happened.

“Don’t let it happen again,” one fan wrote, sharing a gif of Gurira saying, “Wakanda forever!”

Spider-Man: Far From Home on July 2.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 24 Jun 2019

Indiana Catholic high school fires gay teacher days after nearby school refused

U.S. NEWS Indiana Catholic high school fires gay teacher days after nearby school refused

smolaw11/iStock(INDIANAPOLIS) — A second Catholic high school in Indiana faced the decision of whether or not to fire a teacher in a same-sex marriage, and unlike the first school that publicly refused, this school decided to cut ties with the teacher for the church.

The push by the Archdiocese of Indianapolis for local schools to fire teachers who were in same-sex relationships, arguing that homosexual relationships go against the teachings of the church, gained public attention last week.

At the time, Brebeuf Jesuit Prepatory School announced they would be going against the archdiocese in their request to fire a teacher in a same-sex marriage. As a result, the archdiocese cut longstanding ties with the school.

Cathedral High School announced Sunday they made the “agonizing decision” to go in the opposite direction and “separate” from a teacher, but not the church.

The high school’s president and chairman of the board of directors explained their decision in an open letter posted to their website, detailing how they would have had clear repercussions for disobeying the church.

The letter states that the school would not be able to identify as a Catholic school, celebrate the sacraments or have diocesan priests serve on their board of directors, and would lose its 501(c)3 designation, meaning it would no longer be considered a non-profit school.

“Therefore, in order to remain a Catholic Holy Cross School, Cathedral must follow the direct guidance given to us by Archbishop Thompson and separate from the teacher,” the letter states, after having earlier referenced that they employed “a teacher in a public, same-sex marriage.”

The letter goes on to note that since the other school is a Jesuit school — and has a somewhat looser affiliation and dependence upon the archdiocese — the situations are different.

“Because Brebeuf is a specific ministry of the Jesuits, their canonical and nonprofit status is different than ours. Therefore, the two schools cannot function the same way if Cathedral were to receive a similar decree as Brebeuf,” the letter states.

The Archdiocese of Indianapolis released a statement on Monday, saying that the decisions come as a response to the teachers not keeping with Catholic doctrine.

“This issue is not about sexual orientation; rather, it is about our expectation that all personnel inside a Catholic school—who are ministers of the faith—abide by all Church teachings, including the nature of marriage. If and when a minister of the faith is publicly not doing so, the Church calls us to help the individual strive to live a life in accordance with Catholic teaching,” the archdiocese said in a statement.

The school told its community, via their letter, that “we offer our prayers and love to this teacher, our students and faculty, our Archbishop, and all associated with Cathedral as we continue to educate our students in the Catholic Holy Cross tradition,” without naming the teacher.

“We ask that dialogue about this difficult situation be respectful of the dignity of every person and that you continue to pray for our Cathedral family and the wider Indianapolis community,” the letter stated.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 24 Jun 2019

Biden says ‘Dreamers’ should immediately be made citizens in immigration plan

Political News Biden says 'Dreamers' should immediately be made citizens in immigration plan

Sean Rayford/Getty Images(MIAMI) — Ahead of the debates in Miami this week, former vice present Joe Biden released his immigration policy plan in a Miami Herald op-ed.

In the op-ed, Biden lays out in broad strokes his immigration priorities — starting with granting immediate citizenship to undocumented immigrants brought by their parents to the U.S. when they were children.

“DREAMers are Americans, and Congress needs to make it official. The millions of undocumented people in the United States can only be brought out of the shadows through fair treatment, not ugly threats,” Biden writes.

Biden’s op-ed does not speak specifically about citizenship for others illegally in the U.S., but does calls for improvements to the asylum process, as the U.S. has seen a surge in asylum-seekers at the border.

He also cites recent news reports prompting widespread outrage.

“Under Trump, there have been horrifying scenes at the border of kids being kept in cages, tear gassing asylum seekers, ripping children from their mothers’ arms—actions that subvert our American values and erode our ability to lead on the global stage,” he writes.

Biden also hits the current administration’s attempts to do away with Temporary Protected Status for some, which protects individuals who cannot return to their home country due to temporary dangerous conditions, and prevents them form detained by Department of Homeland Security on the basis of their immigration status.

“Trump’s efforts to repeal Temporary Protected Status (TPS) across the board have injected unnecessary uncertainty into the lives of thousands of families. Our asylum system needs to be improved, but the answer is to streamline and strengthen it so that it benefits legitimate claims of those fleeing persecution, while reducing potential for abuse,” Biden writes.

Biden’s plan also calls for “improving screening procedures at our legal ports of entry and make smart investments in border technology,” and “addressing the root cause of immigration by improving security, reducing inequality, and expanding economic opportunity in Central America.”

Biden’s plan would take on the U.S. approach to foreign policy in the region, calling the Trump administration’s Latin America policies at beast “a Cold War-era retread and, at worst, an ineffective mess.”

“Rather than standing with our partners in the region to take on corruption, transnational criminal groups, climate change and threats to democracy and the rule of law, Trump’s wrong-headed policies are leading us astray at every turn,” Biden writes.

Biden’s op-ed lays out the larger points in the former vice president’s immigration plans, it does not speak to the specifics of he proposes to do so. The Biden campaign told ABC News more details on the full policy would be forthcoming.

Biden also takes direct aim at the Trump administration’s handling of immigration — continuing to pit himself against President Trump rather than his 2020 competitors.

“It’s clear Donald Trump is only interested in using his policies to assault the dignity of the Latinx community and scare voters to turn out on election day, not addressing the real challenges facing our hemisphere,” Biden says, in the first paragraph of the piece.

Biden has spoken about the president’s previous family separation policy often while on the trail, saying “This is not who we are…this is not America.”

“Under Trump, there have been horrifying scenes at the border of kids being kept in cages, tear gassing asylum seekers, ripping children from their mothers’ arms—actions that subvert our American values and erode our ability to lead on the global stage,” Biden writes.

Biden also released a version of the piece in Spanish as well in El Nuevo Herald Monday.

Biden has hinted that he may be making a trip to a detention facility while in Florida this week. During an event earlier this month in Concord, New Hampshire, Biden was asked by an audience member if he would bring the press to visit a facility in Homestead, Florida while in the state for the debate. Biden said his campaign was already working on setting that up. The campaign declined to comment about such a visit when asked by ABC News.

Former congressman Beto O’Rourke, D-Texas, has already announced plans to visit the Homestead facility on Thursday.

Some of Biden’s fellow 2020 candidates, including former Obama cabinet Secretary Julian Castro, Gov. Jay Inslee, D-Washington and O’Rourke have also released their immigration plans. All call for a pathway to citizenship for immigrants illegally in the United States.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 24 Jun 2019

Houston mother arrested for allegedly killing son with SUV during game of ‘chicken’

U.S. NEWS Houston mother arrested for allegedly killing son with SUV during game of 'chicken'

Houston Police Department(HOUSTON) — A Texas mother has been charged with killing her 3-year-old son by hitting him with her SUV during what prosecutors are describing as a game of “chicken.”

On June 11, 26-year-old Lexus Stagg allegedly drove toward three of her children in the parking lot of their Houston apartment complex when she struck her son, according to a press release by the Houston Police Department.

Surveillance video taken at the community pool shows a white Lincoln Navigator driving in reverse as three children chase after it. Stagg then allegedly put the car in drive and moved toward them, police said.

Two of the three children were able to move out of the way in time, but the 3-year-old, identified by police as Lord Renfro, was struck and later died at the Memorial Hermann Southwest Hospital.

Stagg did not show any visible signs of intoxication and was released after she was questioned, police said.

Authorities initially described the child’s death as an “unfortunate accident” but determined it was not an accident after further investigation, ABC Houston station KTRK reported.

Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg told the station Stagg was playing a game of “chicken” with her children.

“Every parent has an obligation to protect their children, even from themselves,” Ogg said. “Cars aren’t toys and playing chicken with your kids isn’t a game.”

Stagg’s children were playing in front of her in the parking lot when the child was struck, Harris County prosecutor Sean Teare told KTRK. Lord Refro was run over by two of the SUV’s tires, Teare said.

In 2013, Stagg’s Child Protective Services removed two of Stagg’s older children from her home and placed them with a relative, KTRK reported. Her younger children have also been placed with relatives after the 3-year-old’s death, CPS confirmed with the station.

On Thursday, Stagg was arrested and charged with criminal negligent homicide in the death of her son, police said. She was released on $1,500 bond Friday afternoon after attending her probable cause hearing, according to KTRK.

It is unclear if Stagg has retained a lawyer. ABC News could not immediately reach her for comment.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 24 Jun 2019

Bernie Sanders details plan to cancel $1.6 trillion in student loan debt for everyone

Political News Bernie Sanders details plan to cancel $1.6 trillion in student loan debt for everyone

SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — Sen. Bernie Sanders introduced his most sweeping plan yet to tackle the increasing cost of a higher education, introducing a bill Monday that would make public colleges and trade schools tuition free and cancel outstanding student loan debt for everyone, a proposal that goes beyond one introduced earlier this year by one of his chief presidential campaign rivals, Sen. Elizabeth Warren.

At a Capitol Hill news conference, Sanders unveiled the plan to eliminate all of the $1.6 trillion of student loan debt in the U.S. held by 45 million Americans. The plan would include all private and graduate school loan debt and would apply to all persons regardless of income. The cost, he said, would be paid for by taxing Wall Street speculation.

“If the American people bailed out Wall Street, now it is Wall Street to come to the aid of the middle class of this country,” Sanders said, referencing efforts by the federal government banks and lenders deemed “too big to fail” during the Great Recession of the late 2000s.

“The millennial generation was told that the only way they would get the good jobs available is if they received a college education,” he continued. “Unfortunately, that turned out to be bad advice.”

Student-loan forgiveness and tuition-free colleges have been a main component of Sanders’ rise as a presidential hopeful, garnering sharp criticism from both the left and the right for his ambitious, and expensive, proposals. Critics argue that the revenue generated by Sanders’ proposed Wall Street taxes would not fully cover the costs of the plan, or that the money would be better spent directly assisting those in poverty, rather than persons whose education and degrees have already left them with increased upward mobility.

This student loan forgiveness component of the plan is coupled with a larger initiative to make all public universities, community colleges, and trade schools tuition-free, which would also be paid for by the new set of taxes on Wall Street, including a 0.5 percent tax on stock trades and a 0.1 percent tax on bonds.

At the news conference, Sanders was flanked by Reps. Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash., Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., who are introducing the House version of the bill, and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., an additional supporter of the legislation. Sanders argued pursuing a higher education should not economically punish young Americans.

“The result is that many millions of young people today are forced to work at low wage jobs,” Sanders said. “Bottom line is we should not be punishing people for getting a higher education, it is time to hit the reset button under the proposal that we introduced today, all student debt would be cancelled in six months by taking this action.”

Ocasio-Cortez, who at age 29 last year became the youngest woman ever to win a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives, claimed that her election victory was “easier” than paying off the student loans she continues to carry.

“That should tell you everything about the state of our economy and the state of quality of life for working people, because in order for me to get a chance to have health care, in order for me to get a chance to pay off my student loans, I had to do something that was nearly impossible,” Ocasio-Cortez said. “And I don’t think that that is the bar for which a person should be able to access education, health care, and a bevy of other things that should be considered human rights.”

Monday’s proposal is not be the first time Sanders and Jayapal have teamed up to propose legislation to tackle tuition, although their previous proposals pale in comparison to this most recent bill.

In 2017, they introduced the “College For All Act” which would make public colleges tuition-free for families making up to $125,000 and expand loans for lower-income students looking to attend private universities.

With just two days before the first Democratic presidential debate on Wednesday, Sanders’ proposal may be another way to further distinguish himself from his fellow presidential contenders, even as some of them, longtime friend Warren included, have proposed their own plans to tackle this issue.

Warren’s plan would cancel up to $50,000 in student loan debt for people with a household income under $100,000. Those who make more, up to $250,000 would also get some debt cancellation. But the Massachusetts senator’s plan stops short of relieving debts for those who make more than $250,000.

The Vermont senator spoke to the rationale Monday for not setting income limits for either proposal, comparing the plan to others that are provided to all Americans, such as Social Security, and arguing that wealthier people would pay their share in other ways.

“I happen to … believe in universality, and that if Donald Trump wants to send his grandchildren to a public school, he has the right to do that,” Sanders said, adding, “Now, our response to making sure that this does not benefit the wealthy is in other areas, we are going to demand that the wealthy and large corporations start paying their fair share of taxes.”

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Posted On 24 Jun 2019