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True to his decision to impeach, Peter Meijer says he “may very well have” ended his career.

Rep. Peter Meijer admitted on Sunday that “I could very well have” ended my career after joining nine other Republicans who voted last week to impeach President Trump.

But during an appearance on ABC’s “This Week,” Mr. Meijer – a freshman from Michigan who succeeded Justin Amash, who joined the House as a Republican but became independent in 2019 before voting for to impeach the president that year – upheld the decision.

“But I think it’s also important that we have elected leaders who don’t just think about what is in their own personal interest, not what is going to be politically expedient, but what we really need for the sake of it. country, ”he said, noting that its seat was once occupied by former President Gerald Ford.

Mr Ford committed a “courageous act” – an act that ended his political career – by forgiving Richard M. Nixon after Watergate, Mr Meijer said. Although he did not wish to reflect Mr Ford’s electoral defeat, he said he wanted to ensure that political leaders focus on “the fact that we are a nation of laws, not of men” and place the interests of the nation ahead of their own careers.

Mr Meijer said the past few days had been “absolutely devastating”. Impeaching a president, especially one from his own party, he added, was not something he had always wanted to do.

In the midst of the impeachment vote last week, Meijer said that Mr. Trump had “betrayed his oath of office by seeking to undermine our constitutional process, and he bears the responsibility of inciting the insurgency that we have. suffered.

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TimesVideoWatch Live: Mnuchin testifies before Congress Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin will testify before the Congressional Oversight Committee for the first time on his decision to end pandemic relief programs.

TimesVideoWatch Live: Mnuchin Testifies Before CongressSteven Mnuchin, Secretary of the Treasury, will testify for the first time before the Congressional Oversight Committee about his decision to end pandemic relief programs.

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Supreme Court evaluates decision on non-unanimous jury verdicts

WASHINGTON – The Supreme Court struggled on Wednesday to determine whether its April ruling to bar non-unanimous jury verdicts in cases involving serious crimes should apply retroactively, potentially entitling thousands of inmates to Louisiana, in Oregon and Puerto Rico to new trials.

The April decision, Ramos v. Louisiana, struck down a provision in the Louisiana Constitution that allowed convictions if 10 out of 12 jurors agreed. Judge Neil M. Gorsuch, writing for the majority, said the provision was a relic of white supremacy – an attempt to ensure that one or two black jurors could not prevent convictions of black defendants.

In Wednesday’s argument, Judge Clarence Thomas pointed to the provision’s “sordid roots” and Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh referred to its “racist origins.”

The Ramos decision only applied to defendants whose convictions were not yet final. Wednesday’s argument revolved around whether the ruling should also apply to inmates who had exhausted their appeals.

The new case was brought by Thedrick Edwards, a black man charged with armed robbery, rape and kidnapping. Prosecutors used 10 of their 11 strikes to exclude potential black jurors, and in the end, the jury included a black juror.

The verdict was 10 to 2 on some counts and 11 to 1 on others, with the black juror voting to acquit all charges. Mr. Edwards was sentenced to life in prison.

Judge Kavanaugh said on Wednesday that “the facts of this case certainly seem troubling as to how everything turned out.”

Judge Elena Kagan said there were good reasons to apply the Ramos decision retroactively.

“Ramos says if you weren’t convicted by a unanimous jury, you really weren’t convicted at all,” she said. “And how is it that such a rule does not have retroactive effect?”

But a precedent from 1989, Teague v. Lane, said a ruling on criminal proceedings was retroactive if it applied an existing precedent, but not if it announced a new legal principle.

Given that six justices in the Ramos decision understood it was setting aside a precedent that had allowed non-unanimous juries, argued Elizabeth Murrill, Louisiana Solicitor General, it necessarily announced a new legal principle.

The Teague decision made an exception for the new “watershed rules” on fundamental fairness and trial accuracy. But this exception has never been used.

“The Teague test is demanding,” Judge Gorsuch wrote in Ramos, “so much so that this court has not yet announced a new rule of criminal procedure capable of respecting it.”

Judge Stephen G. Breyer wanted to know how many new trials would be necessary if the court made the Ramos decision retroactive.

Andre Belanger, an attorney for Mr. Edwards, said the outer limit in Louisiana was around 1,600. “The system is more than capable of handling this type of workload,” he said.

Ms Murrill did not dispute the figure, but said many lawsuits would impose huge burdens in Louisiana, Oregon and Puerto Rico, the three jurisdictions that allowed non-unanimous verdicts when the Ramos case went to trial. .

“There is no doubt that the retroactive declaration of the Ramos rule disrupts thousands of cases involving terrible crimes in all three jurisdictions,” she said. “To demand new trials in long-finalized criminal cases would be impossible in some cases and particularly unfair to the victims of these crimes.”

Justice Gorsuch said practical considerations were irrelevant.

“Wouldn’t we expect it to be difficult if, in fact, it was a breakthrough rule?” he said of the potential need for many new trials. “If this was truly a significant and important change, wouldn’t we expect there to be a burden on the state?”

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Bill Cosby case: Judges review decision to allow multiple accusers

A panel of appeals court judges closely questioned Pennsylvania prosecutors on Tuesday on whether Bill Cosby was treated fairly in his 2018 sexual assault trial when five other women were allowed to testify that ‘they too had been victims of violence by the artist during encounters dating back to the 1980s.

The hearing in the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, the state’s highest court, was part of Mr Cosby’s latest efforts to overturn his drug and sexual assault conviction of Andrea Constand at his home near Philadelphia in 2004.

A key point in the trial was the trial judge’s decision to include the testimony of other so-called “bad deed” witnesses. But Mr Cosby’s defense team argued that the collective weight of women’s accounts, who had never been the subject of their own criminal prosecutions, had unfairly tainted the jury.

“Mr. Cosby suffered unquantifiable harm,” Mr. Cosby’s lawyer, Jennifer Bonjean, said during Tuesday’s hearing.

“The presumption of innocence simply did not exist for him at this point,” she added.

Prosecutors from the Montgomery County District Attorney’s Office defended the decision during the 75-minute hearing, which took place virtually, arguing that the testimony of the other women established, as Pennsylvania law recognizes, a pattern of characteristic conduct of Mr. Cosby.

The inclusion of so-called “prior bad acts” testimony is rare, but in Pennsylvania, as in other states, it is permitted if, among other conditions, it demonstrates a pattern of signature abuse.

But some of the seven judges did not appear convinced and questioned prosecutors earnestly about the inclusion of the other women.

Referring to the argument that the testimony set a pattern, Judge Christine Donohue said, “Frankly, I don’t see it.

Justice Max Baer said, “I tend to agree that this evidence was extremely prejudicial.”

At least three other judges questioned the rationale for allowing the testimony of Mr. Cosby’s other accusers.

Mr Cosby’s conviction in April 2018 capped the precipitous demise of one of the world’s best-known and popular artists. He also offered a measure of closure to the dozens of women who, for years, had accused him of similar assaults. For many of these accusers, the verdict was a development which reflected that, in the future, the testimony of the accusers could be given more weight and credibility by the jurors.

Mr. Cosby, 83, is currently serving a three to ten year sentence at SCI Phoenix, a maximum security facility outside of Philadelphia.

But since his conviction, Mr Cosby, who denies his guilt and says any relationship was consensual, has fought to overturn the verdict, arguing that important rulings by trial judge, Justice Steven T.O ‘Neill of the Montgomery County Joint Plea Court denied him a fair trial.

A lower appeals court, however, agreed with Justice O’Neill and upheld the conviction last December. But the Pennsylvania Supreme Court later agreed to hear arguments over the judge’s decision to allow other women to testify. He also agreed to review Judge O’Neill’s decision to allow the trial despite a statement from a former district attorney that he once gave Mr Cosby a binding assurance that he would not be not charged in the case.

The former district attorney said he gave Mr Cosby the assurance to encourage him to testify in a civil case brought by Ms Constand. In this testimony, Mr. Cosby admitted to giving quaaludes to the women he was suing for sex and, in the context of the pending appeal, the Supreme Court is questioning whether the jury should have heard this testimony.

Any decision of the appeals court overturning the verdict would be taken by majority and is not expected for several months.

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Decision to close virus test site for a day to shoot some movies

In a city used to dubbing as a movie set and the inconveniences that go with it, the decision to temporarily close a coronavirus testing site at Union Station in Los Angeles while a movie is being shot there has bothered some. residents of the city during the latest wave of infections.

The movie “It’s All That”, which stars TikTok star Addison Rae and is a reboot of the 1999 romantic comedy “She’s All That”, has received approval to film inside and out. ‘outside the station on Tuesday, the city and county film bureau said. About 170 cast and crew are expected to take part in scenes for the film, the film bureau said.

A homeless advocacy and advocacy group called Ktown for All criticized the decision and shared a copy of an email he said a resident received on Monday afternoon of the company that operates the test site. He said all test appointments for Tuesday at the station have been canceled due to an event there.

The group said the move showed the city had misplaced its priorities at a time when hospitalizations for the virus were on the rise, and that the decision to shut the site for a day was making it more difficult for people who depend on public transport. common get tested.

“This is truly one of the only Covid testing centers in the city of Los Angeles that is truly accessible by public transportation,” Devon Manney, a spokesperson for the group, said in an interview Monday night. “This is the LA we are constantly fighting against.”

Philip Sokoloski, a spokesperson for the office of the film, known as FilmLA, said on Monday evening that neither the office nor the production company’s venues team knew the station was one of the venues. city ​​virus test and were not involved. in the decision to close the site.

City officials said Monday evening that residents whose appointments were canceled could be tested at one of the city’s other nine permanent testing sites or at five pop-up locations, including one at the metro station. North Hollywood which is on the same rapid transit line as the Union. Station. They did not say who made the decision to suspend testing at Union Station on Tuesday.

They also noted that about 350 daily tests are performed on average at Union Station, which they said was less than 1% of the more than 35,000 tests performed each day.

Miramax, who is releasing the film, declined to comment on Monday night.

A Metro spokesperson referred questions about the closure of the test site at Union Station, which did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Monday evening.

A spokeswoman for Curative, the company that operates the testing site, said the tests had been canceled but had no information on the reasons.

City officials said they were trying to restore at least some of the tests at Union Station on Tuesday.

“Informed of the closure of the test site, representatives of the production of the film offered to work with representatives of the station to restore access to the test site tomorrow,” Mr. Sokoloski, the carrier, said Monday evening. floor of the film office. “The two uses of the installation may be compatible, depending on the area to be used for filming and the interest of the production in operating it.”

Andrea Garcia, spokesman for Mayor Eric Garcetti, said the city is committed to making it easier to screen residents.

“We hope to reopen operations at the Union Station site tomorrow,” Garcia said Monday evening. “We remain committed to providing free testing and plan to test over 38,000 people tomorrow.

Taylor Lorenz contributed reporting.

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Deprived of a quick decision, Democrats seek a narrower path

WILMINGTON, Del. – Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s campaign team started on election day believing the candidate had multiple routes to get 270 electoral votes, as some Democrats dreamed of a landslide.

A day later, it was clear that the path to victory would be narrower, slower, and more difficult than many Democrats had hoped for, to serve as a reminder of how deeply polarized the nation is and how difficult it has been. for the party to get the votes. from some of the various constituencies she had courted.

“I thought we were going to finish everything at 10 o’clock last night,” said former Senator Bill Nelson, Democrat of Florida. “Obviously, not only was I wrong about Florida, but what happened to Florida has happened across the country.”

Telling himself that he remained convinced that Mr. Biden would eventually win the presidency, he joked, “I’m carrying a sack and ashes.”

Mr. Biden has a clear path to the presidency, despite President Trump’s false claims about his own position in the race. Mr. Biden reversed Wisconsin and Michigan, Midwestern states that were central to Mr. Trump’s path. He rules in Arizona, another state that was for decades a Republican stronghold but rejected the party under Mr. Trump’s leadership.

Victories in Nevada, where Mr. Biden is narrowly leading, and Arizona would bring him to 270 electoral votes, the minimum number he needs to make him the 46th President of the United States. And Wednesday night Georgia was too close to call, too.

In a speech in Wilmington on Wednesday afternoon, Mr Biden said he would reach 270. “I’m not here to declare that we have won,” he said, “but I am here to report that when the tally is over, we believe we will be the winners. “

Still, the first results on Tuesday and Wednesday indicated a much tighter race in key states than many political observers – and polls – had anticipated. Mr Biden lost Florida, apparently by a larger margin than Hillary Clinton, while the outcome in Pennsylvania, long a high political and personal priority for Mr Biden, remained uncertain, even if there was signs that it was going in his direction.

In his remarks in Wilmington, Mr Biden sought to signal that he is already looking beyond the election, stressing the need for the country to come together once the results are known.

“I know it won’t be easy; I’m not naive, ”he says. “I know how deep and hard the opposing views are in our country on so many things. But I also know it: in order to progress, we must stop treating our adversaries as enemies. We are not enemies. “

Election night, however, underscored how deep divisions in the country run. A number of states Democrats had hopes of – places like Ohio, Florida and even Texas, where Mr. Biden’s running mate Senator Kamala Harris campaigned – have slipped out of reach. And the states where Mr. Biden was supposed to have a comfortable lead, including Wisconsin and Michigan, were extremely close.

Ohio, Texas, Iowa, Florida and quite possibly North Carolina – all battlegrounds, all reaching for the campaign where he nonetheless invested Democratic ticket time last week – have remained Republicans. It was a disappointment to some members of Mr. Biden’s campaign who had hoped for an early night and overwhelming rejection from Mr. Trump, even as they remained cheered by the news from Arizona.

“Running the table in modern American politics is really tough,” said Rep. Tim Ryan, Democrat from Ohio, who held on to his seat in part of the state that has become increasingly difficult for his party, and was optimistic about Mr. Biden’s chances. mostly.

Biden’s campaign officials had always said they sought to create as many avenues to 270 electoral votes as possible, and Mr. Biden’s campaign manager Jennifer O’Malley Dillon warned there are weeks that the race was closer than the polls suggested.

“We have always believed that our initial route to victory was through the Upper Midwest,” Anita Dunn, senior campaign advisor to Mr. Biden, said Wednesday. “The goal was to get 270 electoral votes, and we are confident that after the vote count, that’s where we’re going to be – above 270, that’s how you win the presidency in this. country.”

But on Tuesday, campaign officials had also considered having a clear picture of the results early on, suggesting that Mr Biden would deliver a presidential speech that hit the leadership and national unity notes that evening. Instead, given the close nature of many races, in a year when many Americans voted by mail in a pandemic, he made only brief remarks in the early hours of Wednesday, calling for the patience.

A review of election results in the battlefield states revealed hot spots for Mr Biden in a number of states, perhaps most importantly Florida.

The campaign has made an important game for the state an eternal battleground, deploying the Democratic ticket and former President Barack Obama in recent days. But as Mr Biden’s allies in the state had warned, and some within his campaign worried, he has had to face challenges with parts of the diverse Latino community. And for months, party officials in the state said, he wasn’t particularly visible on the ground, while Trump voters were clearly excited.

“Their message, their ‘socialism with a victory for Biden’, scared a lot of people in the South Florida area,” said State Senator Janet Cruz, Democrat, in a pre-election interview. “I call it a zipper effect: you start with a little problem, you close it right away. And it worked.

Mr. Biden has gained Hispanics in the state by just five percentage points, according to preliminary exit polls, a steep drop from four years ago, when Clinton gained 27 points among that group.

In one of his most notable setbacks, Mr Biden led by just seven points in Miami-Dade County, which has a predominantly Hispanic population and many Cuban-American residents, a steep drop from the margin of 29 points from Mrs. Clinton four years ago. . In Osceola County, central Florida, which has a large Puerto Rican population, Mr. Biden was ahead by 14 points, a notable drop from Ms. Clinton’s 25-point advantage.

Other states show the limits of Mr. Biden’s efforts to ward off white voters who backed Mr. Trump in 2016. In Iowa, many pro-Trump counties have moved more to the right. The same pattern can be seen in Ohio.

Yet, in some states like Pennsylvania, he also appeared to be making gains with other voters, including moderates and independents.

“My friends, I have no doubts that we will come out victorious,” Biden said on Wednesday. “There will be no Blue States or Red States when we win – just the United States of America.”

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A shared decision for the Democrats

WASHINGTON – Americans who turned out in record numbers for the election were ready to weigh a change of course in the White House after President Trump’s four tumultuous years, but the unfolding results showed voters were failing not ready to hand over unfettered control of government to the emboldened Democrats who had pledged to pursue an ambitious agenda if they triumphed.

Despite a record-breaking fundraising windfall and a wave of indications that voters were deeply unhappy with Mr. Trump, the disappointed Democrats fell far short of their aspirations to take clear control of the Senate and increase their numbers. number in the House. Instead, they watched sadly on Wednesday as their path to a majority in the Senate narrowed as they absorbed unexpected losses in the House.

The split political decision underscored the fact that while they turned away from the chaos of a divisive Republican president, voters wanted to protect themselves from Democratic hegemony in the nation’s capital and state houses across the country. Away from the so-called blue wave that many Democrats had envisioned, the election was shaping up to be a series of conflicting gusts pointing in different directions which, above all else, seemed to promise continued division at all levels of government. .

In some ways, the setup could be tailor-made for former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., if he were to ultimately win, which seemed increasingly likely on Wednesday. And it mirrored the decision Democrats made this year in picking Mr. Biden as their standard bearer, pushing him above much more progressive candidates.

Mr Biden sees himself as an old-fashioned deal maker, someone who can function in the more mainstream political environment voters seemed to aspire to with mixed results like the re-election of Republican Senator Susan Collins centrist of Maine, while delivering three of the state’s four electoral votes to Mr. Biden. But there are real questions whether those old days of courtesy and compromise are gone forever.

If Mr Biden wins, the victory of Ms Collins and other Senate Republicans targeted by Democrats means he will likely face a majority led by Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, a man who recently used the majority. to thwart Democratic Presidents. The Biden-McConnell dynamic could force the new administration to reduce legislative targets for immigration, health care, the environment, and economic policy. It could also force Biden to negotiate with Republicans over his executive and judiciary candidates, who are expected to get Senate confirmation. Progressives who expected big wins on Tuesday that would allow them to rush in with bold new initiatives were going to be disappointed.

“Senate Republicans will be in a very strong position to lead the next two years,” said Sen. John Barrasso of Wyoming, a member of the Republican leadership. “Nothing will become law without the support of Republicans in the Senate.”

This is an institutional arrangement that some argue could force the bipartisan negotiation that has been so absent in recent years. But it could also be a prescription for the continuation of the partisan paralysis that has held Congress in its grip.

Mr Barrasso argued that Democrats erred in believing that deep public dissatisfaction with Mr Trump would allow them to get rid of seasoned Republican incumbents, and that they were ahead of the game by publicly presenting plans to make sweeping changes that went beyond what most voters wanted. These included threats to remove filibuster, push through an aggressive legislative agenda and add Supreme Court seats to counterbalance the three judges Republicans had installed on Democratic accusations of abuse of power. .

“Their own members were talking about these things, and many Americans felt that was too radical,” Barrasso said. “People saw this scary.”

Republicans took to the impeachment discussion in the courts in particular, pointing to it as a colorful illustration of how Democrats could institute far-reaching changes in Washington, a prospect that clearly rattled some voters.

Democrats still hoped on Wednesday to continue on the path to Senate control, if Mr Biden was elected and their candidates succeeded in toppling the two Republican senators from Georgia in two races that both appeared to be heading for a runoff in January. Yet, while contemplating failing to succeed, Democrats argued that their main problem this year was simply political geography: to gain a majority, they had to topple Republicans in states led by Mr. Trump, when the Senate races generally go in the direction of the state. presidential race.

“The card was very difficult for us,” said Senator Chuck Schumer of New York, who formulated the Democratic campaign strategy. He noted that Republicans defended seats in only two states carried by Hillary Clinton in 2016: Maine and Colorado. Mr Schumer’s decision to try to broaden the playing field to force Republicans to spend more resources and give Democrats a shot at a majority has succeeded to some extent by putting more races on the line. But it only went so far.

With the exception of Maine, where Ms Collins defied all odds, the emerging presidential results appeared to match the Senate result, with Democrats winning in Colorado, where Mr Biden prevailed, and Arizona, where he opened. an advance. But that meant Republicans could survive well-funded Democratic challenges in states like Iowa, Montana, and possibly North Carolina.

Despite expectations from both sides that Mr. Trump’s presence on the ballot would hamper Republicans in competitive states and districts, the president appeared to have had substantial coattails in conservative-leaning states, turning into constituencies of basis for re-electing incumbents crucial to maintaining the party’s grip on the Senate. In other areas where the president was weaker, such as Democratic-leaning Maine and more conservative suburban districts across the country, voters seemed to have stuck with Republicans they knew rather than taking a chance on Democrats.

This was the case in the Omaha suburb, where Mr Biden won a potentially crucial electoral vote, but Republican Rep. Don Bacon defeated Liberal Democrat opponent Kara Eastman to retain his seat. The story was similar for veteran Republican Ann Wagner of Missouri, Steve Chabot of Ohio and Rodney Davis of Illinois, who all kept their jobs. And in New York, three Democratic challengers lagged behind in their efforts to oust Republicans, while two first-term Democrats elected in the party’s 2018 midterm poll – Reps Max Rose in Staten Island and Anthony Brindisi in downtown New York – were in danger of losing.

Republicans have gained ground in part by portraying challengers and incumbent Democrats – however moderate they may be – as socialists bent on forcing an extremely liberal agenda on their constituents, such as defounding police departments and enacting environmental regulations. strict and costly.

“The suburban voter rejected the radical left,” said Corry Bliss, a senior Republican strategist who was one of many to warn of a grim environment that could cost his party seats this year. “They respect the cops, don’t want the Green New Deal and don’t want to be taxed into oblivion.”

The momentum was playing out on a smaller scale across the country, as Democrats also failed in their efforts to sweep state houses Republicans have controlled for years in Iowa, North Carolina and Texas, Denying them crucial power over politics on issues such as abortion, guns and police reform as well as control over the overhaul of national and national electoral maps.

During the campaign, Mr Biden, who served as a Delaware senator for over 45 years, spoke about his experience working across the aisle and suggested he could win over the half-dozen Republicans necessary to advance legislation. But that was provisioned to the Democratic majority, and on Wednesday he faced a situation where he could win the White House while Republicans still controlled the Senate. Mr Biden and Mr McConnell are used to making deals, but the terms were not always approved by their fellow Democrats.

Rahm Emanuel, who as President Barack Obama’s White House chief of staff clashed with Mr McConnell in 2009 and 2010, predicted the Republican leader would not be able to replicate his relentless obstruction strategy given the serious issues the nation faces during a pandemic. . And he noted that Mr. McConnell is expected to protect Republican Senate candidates in 2022 in states like North Carolina, Ohio and Wisconsin.

“He can no longer lead a scorched earth policy,” Emanuel said. “He knows this card is biased against him.”

Asked Wednesday in Louisville, Ky., How he would work with Mr. Biden, Mr. McConnell was not ready to concede the election. “I don’t know if I’ll need it or not,” he told reporters.

But as he wrapped up his campaign on Monday, Mr. McConnell made it clear to his supporters he had zero tolerance for some of the changes Democrats hoped to bring about.

“When it comes to ending the filibuster, Washington State, Puerto Rico State, Supreme Court, it will not be presented to Mitch McConnell’s Senate,” he said. he promised. “I’m in top form and ready for another term not only for Kentucky, but also to set the nation’s agenda.”