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Gen Politics

    San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee, the city's first Asian-American mayor, died suddenly Tuesday morning after a heart attack, officials said in a statement. He was 65. >> PHOTOS: Notable deaths 2017 >> Click here or scroll down for more >> Read more trending news 
  • 12:27 a.m. EST Wednesday: Mary Norwood says she's asking for a recount as Keisha Lance Bottoms declares a victory in the Atlanta mayor's race. >> Visit WSBTV.com for the latest on this developing story With 100 percent of the precincts reporting, Bottoms leads by just 759 votes. Bottoms, introduced by Mayor Kasim Reed as the 60th mayor of Atlanta, declared victory as she spoke to her supporters, but Norwood said the race isn't over yet. >> On WSBTV.com: LIVE real-time election results ORIGINAL STORY: Today is the day Atlanta will decide which woman will become its next mayor. >> Watch the news report here Polls officially opened at 7 a.m. Tuesday. Keisha Lance Bottoms and Mary Norwood spent Monday at City Hall doing the people’s business, but they also did some campaigning before Tuesday’s election. And with the race coming to an end, some people are now deciding whom they plan to endorse. >> Visit WSBTV.com for complete coverage Outside City Hall, more endorsements came in for Bottoms. Prominent attorneys and progressives stood with her. “I have no doubt in my mind that Ms. Bottoms will surround herself with a team of compassionate and thoughtful people with the political savvy to make this city better,” said assistant professor Maurice Hobson. >> On WSBTV.com: Keisha Lance Bottoms, Mary Norwood face off ahead of Election Day But across town, a civil rights activist said he’s endorsing Mary Norwood. “Dr. King said it best: 'People want to be judged based on their character, not the color of their skin.' That works not just for white people but for African-Americans,” said the Rev. Markel Hutchins.  Hutchins said he supports Norwood because of her decades of public service. >> Read more trending news  “What Atlanta needs now is not just someone who is desiring of the office of mayor but someone who legitimately wants to serve the public,” Hutchins said. Both candidates were at Monday’s City Council meeting after the Tuesday’s election, and it will be one of their last; one will become mayor and the other will become a private citizen.
  • Many political contenders earned new titles as the results from Election Day rolled in Tuesday, but one Virginia politician also became a history maker as the first openly transgender woman elected and seated in a U.S. state legislature. >> Chris Hurst, whose girlfriend was killed on live TV, wins Virginia delegate seat Democrat Danica Roem, a wife and stepmother of one, beat out 25-year, 13-term incumbent Republican Del. Bob Marshall for the House of Delegates position.  “Discrimination is a disqualifier,” Roem said Tuesday night as the votes were still being counted. “This is about the people of the 13th District disregarding fear tactics, disregarding phobias ... where we celebrate you because of who you are, not despite it.” >> Read more trending news  This is Roem’s first political position. Want to learn more about her? Here are five things you should know: Roem’s race with Marshall was contentious. Marshall helped introduce the controversial “bathroom bill,' which would restrict the bathrooms transgender individuals would use. While the legislation did not pass, Marshall continued to voice his opinions about the LGBT community. The self-proclaimed “chief homophobe” refused to debate Roem in person and referred to her using male pronouns. He also produced several ads denouncing Roem’s transgender identity. One read, “Danica Roem In His Own Words,” and another stated, “Danica Roem, born male, has made a campaign issue out of transitioning to female.” >> On AJC.com: Spelman College to admit transgender female students The Democrat raised more money than her Republican opponent. The Virginia native raised $500,000, according to The Washington Post. Many of the donations came from LGBT advocates and supporters. While District 13 only has 52,471 registered voters, she reportedly knocked on doors more than 75,000 times. Marshall’s campaign said staffers knocked on voters’ doors about 49,000 times.  She began her physical transformation about four years ago. The 33-year-old started her transgender transition in 2013. She began hormone replacement therapy and later changed her name from “Dan” to “Danica.' Roem was an award-winning newspaper reporter. She graduated from St. Bonaventure University in New York with a degree in journalism. For nine years, she worked for the Gainesville Times and Prince William Times as a reporter and editor. During her stint as a journalist, she was awarded by the Virginia Press Association seven times.  She plays in a metal band in her spare time.  Roem sings in a metal band called Cab Ride Home. She’s the lead vocalist of the five-member ensemble, and they have performed more than 100 shows, including in the U.K., according to their website. 
  • Former interim Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Donna Brazile apparently had much to say about former President Barack Obama in her revealing book. An excerpt from Brazile’s newest book, “Hacks: The Inside Story of the Break-ins and Breakdowns That Put Donald Trump in the White House,” focused heavily on the relationship between certain high-profile Democrats and how certain egos and competencies affected the DNC’s debt, reports The Daily Caller. >> Donna Brazile tells critics of her new book to 'go to hell' “We had three Democratic parties: The party of Barack Obama, the party of Hillary Clinton, and this weak little vestige of a party led by [Florida Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz] that was doing a very poor job getting people who were not president elected,” Brazile wrote, criticizing the former DNC chairwoman for incompetence. Her criticisms focused primarily on the three. She even wrote at one point, “[Obama] left it in debt. Hillary bailed it out so that she could control it, and Debbie went along with all of this because she liked the power and perks of being a chair but not the responsibilities.” Brazile accused Obama of caring “deeply about his image” and using the DNC to fund “his pollster and focus groups.” This was especially odd considering Obama was in his second term as president, so he was unable to run for the position again, she said. >> On Rare.us: President Trump uses Democratic primary 'rigging' allegations to blast his Justice Department “As I saw it, these three titanic egos – Barack, Hillary and Debbie – had stripped the party to a shell for their own purposes,” she added. Brazile said Obama, Clinton and Schultz loved the Democratic Party dearly and sincerely but “leeched it of its vitality and were continuing to do so.” In another portion of the book, which was highly publicized, Brazile stated that she found “proof” that the DNC rigged the nomination process in favor of Clinton over Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). Several Democrats shared their support of Brazile’s claim, including Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.). Warren told CNN’s Jake Tapper on Friday, “What we’ve got to do as Democrats now is we’ve got to hold this party accountable.” >> Read more trending news Brazile walked back her statements on Sunday, telling George Stephanopoulos of ABC’s “This Week,” “I found no evidence. None whatsoever.” Brazile took over as interim chair for the DNC in July 2016 after Schultz was forced to step down, the result of an email leak that revealed DNC staffers aided Clinton’s campaign over Sanders’ in the primary. Schultz later argued that the primary was “by the books” and “followed the rules.” A WikiLeaks email leak a few months later revealed that Brazile provided Clinton's team with some key details of the presidential debate questions ahead of time.
  • President Donald Trump took to Twitter on Saturday morning to thank former President Jimmy Carter for his remarks about “how badly I am treated by the press.” >> See the tweet here >> Reports: First charges filed by Special Counsel Robert Mueller Trump was referring to a recent interview with the New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd that had the Georgia native asserting the “media have been harder on Trump than any other president certainly that I’ve known about.” >> Trump ally Roger Stone suspended from Twitter after profanity-laden rant Added Carter: “I think they feel free to claim that Trump is mentally deranged and everything else without hesitation.” >> Donald Trump slams Michael Moore's Broadway show as 'total bomb'; filmmaker fires back Also in that interview, the Democrat offered Trump his services to negotiate with North Korea’s leader – an offer the White House formally rebuffed on Friday. >> Read more trending news The 93-year-old repeated that he and his wife Rosalynn voted for Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders over Hillary Clinton in last year’s Democratic primary. He questioned whether Russia’s attempts to interfere in the election changed “enough votes, or any votes” to matter. And he knocked some of former President Barack Obama’s foreign policy decisions.
  • Seattle Mayor Ed Murray is expected to resign at 5 p.m. PDT Wednesday amid allegations from five sex abuse accusers.  >> Watch the news report here Murray made the announcement in a written statement at 1:07 p.m. PDT Tuesday, about two hours after a fifth man accused him of sexual abuse decades ago. >> On KIRO7.com: Read a timeline of Seattle mayor’s alleged sexual abuse of teens, as well as his attorney’s responses, here 'While the allegations against me are not true, it is important that my personal issues do not affect the ability of our city government to conduct the public’s business,' he wrote.  >> Read more trending news A cousin of the Seattle mayor was the fifth man to accuse Murray of sexual abuse – this time alleging he was repeatedly molested as a teenager in the 1970s. The Seattle Times broke the story shortly after 11 a.m. PDT when Murray was expected to announce a plan for KeyArena. Murray’s staff canceled the press briefing. More coverage from KIRO7.com: >> Document shows foster-guardian relationship between Seattle mayor, accuser >> Man accusing Seattle Mayor of sex abuse goes public for first time >> Man who sued Seattle mayor over alleged sex abuse now seeks millions from city >> Seattle LGBTQ commission wants mayor's resignation; others say that's not in city's best interest >> Could Mayor Murray be impeached? Skepticism expressed in council meeting With an upcoming election in Seattle, Murray has publicly denied all the claims. Read more at KIRO7.com.
  • Russian President Vladimir Putin reportedly will require the U.S. embassy in Moscow to cut its staff by 755 in response to Congress’ vote Thursday to increase sanctions on Russia, North Korea and Iran. Russia’s deputy foreign minister said Sunday on ABC’s “This Week with George Stephanopoulos” that the U.S. had it coming. “I think retaliation is long, long overdue,” he said. “We have a very rich toolbox at our disposal.” He added: “If the U.S. side decides to move further towards further deterioration, we will answer, we will respond in kind. We will mirror this. We will retaliate. ... But my whole point is, don’t do this, it is to the detriment of the interests of the US.” Putin gave a TV interview with Rossiya 1 and said he doesn’t see things changing soon. “We waited for quite some time that maybe something will change for the better, had such hope that the situation will somehow change, but, judging by everything, if it changes, it will not be soon,” he said. >> Read more trending news Russian’s Foreign Ministry on Friday ordered a reduction by Sept. 1 in the number of U.S. diplomats in Russia. It said it is ordering the U.S. Embassy to limit the number of embassy and consular employees in the country to 455 in response to the U.S. Senate’s approval of a new package of sanctions. Putin said the response would be “painful” for the U.S., but he opposes further measures at this time. “We certainly have something to respond with and restrict those areas of joint cooperation that will be painful for the American side but I don’t think we need to do it,” he said. In December, in former President Barack Obama’s final days in office, 35 Russian diplomats were expelled from buildings in New York and Maryland. “These actions follow repeated private and public warnings that we have issued to the Russian government, and are a necessary and appropriate response to efforts to harm U.S. interests in violation of established international norms of behavior,” then-President Obama said in a letter, explaining sanctions. Obama said the sanctions were a response to “a global campaign of malicious cyber activities” conducted by Russia. It is now up to President Donald Trump to sign the sanctions into law or veto, and the White House says he will sign it. The Associated Press contributed to this report.
  • A 9-year-old boy from Stockton, California, who is essentially President Donald Trump’s biggest littlest fan, wrote a letter to the president, asked to be his friend and has gotten a huge yes in response. >> Watch the news report here Dylan “Pickle” Harbin got a special shout-out from new White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders on Wednesday when she read the letter he wrote to Trump. >> See the letter here In an interview with KTXL, Harbin said, “I sent him a letter and asked if he could be my friend, and he said, ‘Yes.’ I want him to tell me I can be president.” Sanders confirmed this Wednesday, saying she forwarded the letter to the president, who accepted the offer of friendship and extended an invite for a tour. Harbin likes Trump so much that he had a “Make America Great Again” birthday cake in the shape of a campaign hat with a campaign poster that says, “Trump Pickle ’17,” on it, KTXL reported. When asked why he looked up to the president, he said, “Because he’s a smart businessman, and I like all of his suits.” >> Read more trending news SuAnn Harbin, Dylan’s mom, said her son’s reading up on Trump and his interest in politics isn’t something she forced, as some have suggested. She also said they found out 20 minutes before Sanders read the letter. They were at a baseball game in San Francisco. “It was all him. He did everything,” she said.  >> Need something to lift your spirits? Read more uplifting news “It was a complete surprise. We were at a Giants game, and they had called right before we went in to the stadium, and they said, ‘Hi, this is so and so from the White House and we’re calling to let you know that we received Pickle’s letter and that they’re going to read it at the press conference in about 20 minutes.’” (H/t New York Daily News)
  • On Monday, President Donald Trump ventured to West Virginia to speak at the annual Boy Scout Jamboree, which drew tens of thousands of scouts. >> Read the transcript of President Trump’s speech to the 2017 Boy Scout Jamboree During his speech, Trump bashed the media and former President Barack Obama and boasted about his election victory, calling Nov. 8, 2016, “a beautiful date.” At one point, Trump mentioned meeting New York developer William Levitt at a cocktail party. >> Watch the clip here  Trump seemed to win the support of the crowd from the beginning. He arrived to riotous applause and got the scouts to boo Obama when he asked, “Did President Obama ever come to a jamboree?” Obama never spoke at a jamboree while he was president, but he did record a video message for the scouts on one occasion. >> On Rare.us: A surprisingly small percentage of Americans think President Trump will 'definitely' finish his first term The Boy Scouts of America Facebook page was flooded with comments by parents who blasted Trump’s appearance, even on posts unrelated to the rally. One woman wrote, “Done with scouts after you felt the need to have my kid listen to a liar stroke his ego on our time.” Another said, “I can’t believe the Boy Scouts booed a living American president.” There were a number of comments calling the speech “propaganda,” and some even made comparisons to Adolf Hitler’s infamous rallies in Nuremberg. John McLaughlin, who led the CIA under George Bush, tweeted that the jamboree “had the feel of a third world authoritarian’s youth rally.” CNN’s Chris Cillizza published a list of “The 29 most cringe-worthy lines from Donald Trump’s hyper-political speech to the Boy Scouts.” The piece included included statements such as “You know we have a tremendous disadvantage in the Electoral College — popular vote is much easier” and “I went to Maine four times, because it’s one vote, and we won. But we won — one vote. I went there because I kept hearing we’re at 269.” New York Magazine published a similar list, though they only included 14 “inappropriate moments.” >> Read more trending news However, Trump’s supporters backed the president’s appearance and branded the backlash as another attack by the mainstream media and “leftists.” The Boy Scouts released the following statement after the backlash to Trump’s speech: “The Boy Scouts of America is wholly non-partisan and does not promote any one position, product, service, political candidate or philosophy. The invitation for the sitting U.S. President to visit the National Jamboree is a long-standing tradition and is in no way an endorsement of any political party or specific policies.”
  • In an interview with a Corpus Christi radio station, Texas Rep. Blake Farenthold, a Republican, called out “female senators from the Northeast” for the latest snag in the GOP's effort to repeal Obamacare, adding that he “might” challenge them to a duel if they were men. Farenthold spoke to KEYS host Bob Jones on Friday morning, according to the Houston Chronicle. While he didn’t name names, the only Republican female senator from the Northeast to oppose the bill is Sen. Susan Collins of Maine. Sen. Shelley Moore Capito is a Republican from West Virginia, not normally considered part of the Northeast. The third female GOP senator to oppose the bill is Sen. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, also not considered part of the Northeast.   >> Read more trending news “If it was a guy from south Texas, I might ask him to step outside and settle this Aaron Burr-style,” Farenthold told Jones, referring to the infamous 1804 duel between Vice President Aaron Burr and Treasury Secretary Andrew Hamilton. Hamilton was mortally wounded in the Weehawken, New Jersey, duel and died the next day. According to The Associated Press, Collins later responded: 'As far as I know, dueling is illegal in every state. He'll be disappointed, I guess.' Farenthold clarified his comments in a statement Monday, the AP reported. 'This was clearly tongue-in-cheek,' he said. 'That being said, I'm extremely frustrated with Senate Republicans who are breaking their promise to the American people to repeal and replace Obamacare.' – The Cox Media Group National Content Desk contributed to this report.