Rise and Shine: Oct. 17, 2019

Good Thursday morning, CivMixers. It’s still pretty touch and go out there when it comes to the weather. There are wind and flood advisories in effect, and the rain this morning could be heavy at times with about half an inch of precipitation falling.

Be careful on that morning commute, and leave some extra time if you can. It’s likely to take longer than usual to reach your destination.

The temperature will hover around 51 degrees, according to The Weather Channel, and winds could again reach 20 to 30 miles per hour. Things will start to taper off this afternoon, and by evening, we’ll see some clouds and just a chance of a shower.

By tomorrow, we’re going to see some sun again, and the weekend looks to be shaping up nicely, with temperatures perhaps hitting 60 on Sunday.

By the way, in case you’re keeping track, it’s the 25th day of Fall, and there are 66 days left till Winter. So get those cider doughnuts in while you can.

Also, it’s a notable day for local history buffs. In 1777, British forces under Gen. John Burgoyne surrendered to American troops in Saratoga – a turning point of the Revolutionary War.

Today is the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty and also National Pasta Day.

Happy birthday to a big bunch of Libras. Singer Wyclef Jean turns 50 today, and shares this day with rapper Eminem, who, as fans know, was born Marshall Mathers, (47); musician Ziggy Marley (50), golf Hall of Fame member Ernie Els (50), and country singer Alan Jackson (61), among others.

In the news…

He said she’s a “third-grade” politician. She said he’s having a meltdown. And with that President Donald Trump and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi chalked up the latest explosive meeting that ended abruptly with a walkout at the White House.

Just hours after Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said they stormed out of a meeting with Trump on Syria, the California Democrat updated her Twitter cover banner with an image of her in a tense exchange with the president.

The roughly 20-minute meeting – the first since Democrats began an impeachment inquiry of Trump – was a new low, according to the recollections of several Democratic officials who shared details of the get together. The White House did not dispute their accounts.

Trump had tweeted the image earlier and captioned it, “Nervous Nancy’s unhinged meltdown!”

Prior to the meeting, the House overwhelmingly voted to pass a bipartisan vote on a resolution that opposes Trump’s decision to withdraw U.S. troops from a location in northern Syria.

Trump faced off against both parties in Congress in an extraordinary confrontation over his decision to abandon America’s Kurdish allies as the vast majority of House Republicans joined Democrats to condemn his policy in an overwhelming vote.

After vowing not to cooperate with a “kangaroo court,” the president has largely failed to prevent current and former administration members from spending hours with Democrats seeking to impeach him.

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and his staff prepared his Republican caucus yesterday for the potential of becoming jurors in an impeachment trial of Trump in the coming months.

The nation’s three largest drug distributors and two manufacturers have agreed with multiple states on a framework to resolve thousands of opioid cases with a settlement worth nearly $50 billion in cash and addiction treatments. This occurs before a trial set to begin Monday.

Trump defended the Christopher Columbus federal holiday and gave a shout-out to Mother Frances Cabrini during a reception celebrating Italian heritage with Italian President Sergio Mattarella last night.

New York State now has a law that could spell further legal danger to people who Trump might pardon. That list will not include felons such as former WNY Republican Rep. Chris Collins.

Schoharie County District Attorney Susan J. Mallery contends the questionable business practices at a Saratoga Springs auto shop had no role in an October 2018 limousine crash that killed 20 people.

A bill introduced this month by Albany Democratic Assemblywoman Pat Fahy would require all single-use plastic containers — items like water bottles — to be made of 75 percent recycled material.

School superintendents in the Capital Region have a lot to say about the way the New York distributes state aid, even though they were left off the guest list for the state Senate’s roundtable discussions on the topic, which kicked off yesterday downstate.

An error in the Albany County legal system allowed a defrocked deacon convicted of child sex abuse to avoid a five-year prison sentence and stay off New York’s sex offender registry.

A defiant Troy Mayor Patrick Madden told about 100 people at a candidates forum last night that he wouldn’t change the decisions he’s made during his four years in office that his opponents have used to attack him during the campaign.

TU columnist Chris Churchill, who is not in the habit of defending Gov. Andrew Cuomo, says the governor’s recent use of the n-word during a live radio interview was “defendable.”

Cuomo’s still-unclear policy on future toll increases for the new Tappan Zee Bridge and the 570-mile New York State Thruway is casting uncertainty over the agency’s outlook as it returns to the municipal-bond market.

The New York State Drinking Water Quality Council held a meeting to discuss emerging contaminates in drinking water, which has impacted the Capital Region.

A husband and wife are accused of secretly recording customers in the women’s restrooms in Watervliet. The charges include unlawful surveillance and endangering the welfare of a child, in two separate jurisdictions.

Fred Guttenberg, Skidmore College Class of ’88, gets hate mail and posts because he’s pushing for a federal background check to buy ammunition. His only daughter, Jaime, was 14 when she was killed in the Marjory Stoneman High School shooting in Florida.

A 2017 data breach impacting more than 600 workers at Taconic Biosciences in Renssealer resulted in a sizable settlement after a class action lawsuit, but now those compromised are warning others of the dangers of these phishing scams.

The SUNY deputy police chief assigned to SUNY System Plaza in Albany has been arrested on child pornography charges.

The Washington County Municipal Building was open for business yesterday thanks to the hard work of a cleaning company and some county workers following a skunk attack.

The mothers of Eric Garner and Trayvon Martin oppose a NYC proposal to outlaw menthol-flavored cigarettes, worrying that such a ban would fuel a menthol black market leading to more deadly “stop and frisk” encounters between police and young black people.

New York state agencies are revising a plan to create a rail-to-trail corridor between Tupper Lake and Lake Placid.

The U.S. Census Bureau has asked several states to turn over driver’s license records that include personal data like eye color as part of Trump’s effort to obtain citizenship data.

Public health officials in Massachusetts are reporting 10 more confirmed or probable cases of vaping-related lung illnesses.

Megyn Kelly branded disgraced former “Today” host — and her ex-colleague — Matt Lauer a “sexual predator” as she demanded an urgent, independent investigation into the rape and sexual harassment allegations against him, and whether NBC tried to cover them up by killing stories on disgraced Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein.

UltraViolet Action, a women’s advocacy organization, called on the DNC to pull its fifth Democratic presidential debate — co-hosted by MSNBC and the Washington Post — in light of new revelations made about NBC News and NBCUniversal in Ronan Farrow’s new book, “Catch and Kill.”

Chicago parents and community groups are scrambling to prepare for a massive teachers’ strike set to begin tomorrow, prompting the city to preemptively cancel classes in the nation’s third-largest school district.

MGM Resorts International, pressured by investors to unload its remaining company-owned casinos, agreed to sell the Bellagio resort in Las Vegas to Blackstone Group for $4.25 billion and will continue to operate the property under a lease arrangement.

The first all-female spacewalk in NASA’s 61-year history is finally happening and will even take place a few days ahead of schedule – tomorrow.

Photo credit: George Fazio.

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