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Inside Daily Brief (Nov 21st, 2017)

The Federal Communications Commission is expected to repeal net neutrality rules in a vote next month. FCC Chairman Ajit Pai has pushed for the undoing of the Obama-era rules, which require internet service providers to treat all internet traffic equally. Under Pai's plan, "The Restoring Internet Freedom Order," providers would have more control over what website their customers can view, and the costs associated with online access. The FCC, now a 3-2 Republican majority, is expected to approve the proposal on December 14. “Under my proposal, the federal government will stop micromanaging the internet,” Pai said in a statement. The proposal has pitted telecom companies, which have battled broadband regulations for years, against internet companies such as Amazon, which argue that the companies could favor certain web sites over others. The plan is expected to face legal opposition. - NYT

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U.S. Rep. John Conyers, the longest-serving member of the House of Representatives, is accused of making sexual advances on female staff members. Buzzfeed obtained documents from a complaint, which included four signed affidavits from former staffers. The women claim Conyers requested sex acts, caressed their hands, rubbed their backs and legs, and asked them to transport women with whom Conyers was reportedly having affairs. The Michigan Democrat is also accused of using public funds to settle a sexual harassment claim from a former staffer. The woman filed a complaint in 2014 claiming she was fired for refusing Conyers' sexual advances. She signed a confidentiality agreement "in exchange for a settlement of more than $27,000," Buzzfeed reported. The settlement money came from Conyers’ office budget instead of a designated fund. Conyers’ denied the settlement to the Associated Press. - BUZZFEED

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CBS has fired television host Charlie Rose after eight women claimed he sexually harassed them. In a note to staff, CBS News President David Rhodes said Rose's immediate termination "followed the revelation yesterday of extremely disturbing and intolerable behavior said to have revolved around his PBS program." Rhodes said that despite Rose's journalistic contributions to CBS, "there is absolutely nothing more important, in this or any organization, than ensuring a safe, professional workplace." In a Washington Post report published on Monday, eight women accused Rose, 75, of "lewd phone calls, walking around naked in their presence, or groping their breasts, buttocks or genital areas." The report said the women, ages 21 to 37 at the time, were either employees or wanted to work at the “Charlie Rose” show when the alleged encounters happened in the late 1990s to 2011. - USAT

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Investigators found additional remains of U.S. Army Sergeant La David Johnson in Niger. Johnson was killed along with three other U.S. soldiers when an ISIS-linked group ambushed their patrol near the village of Tongo Tongo on October 4. The Pentagon confirmed that the additional remains were found on November 12, at the site where Johnson's body was recovered. His body was found nearly a mile away from the ambush scene, separated from the Green Beret-led team. It took nearly 48 hours to find Johnson after he was deemed missing. Investigators are looking into witness accounts that Johnson was found with his hands tied, according to CNN. "The department continues to conduct a detailed and thorough investigation into the deaths" of the four soldiers, a Department of Defense spokesperson said. - REUTERS

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The Treasury Department issued new sanctions against North Korea, a day after the Trump administration designated the country as a state sponsor of terrorism. The sanctions target one person, 13 entities and 20 boats. Reuters reports that the 13 North Korean and Chinese organizations are accused of supporting North Korea through trade and helping the country avoid nuclear restrictions. Three blacklisted Chinese companies - Dandong Xianghe Trading Co., Dandong Kehua Economy & Trade Co., and Dandong Hongda Trade Co. - have collectively done more than $750 million in trade with Pyongyang, the department said. "We are also sanctioning the shipping and transportation companies, and their vessels, that facilitate North Korea's trade and its deceptive maneuvers," Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said. - CNBC

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Retired baseball pitcher Roy Halladay flew his plane fast and low, coming within 75 feet of coastal homes, before diving into the Gulf of Mexico earlier this month, the National Transportation Safety Board found. Investigators released a preliminary report about the crash that killed Halladay, 40, a Cy Young Award winner. Halladay was the only person aboard the ICON A5 plane when he took off from a lake near his home in Odessa, Florida, on November 7. He flew up to 1,900 feet before dropping down as he neared the coastline. Halladay was traveling at about 105 mph when he skimmed the water’s surface at 11 feet. He later flew close to nearby homes before climbing and diving into the water at a 45-degree angle. The plane slammed into the water and turned over. Halladay had logged roughly 700 hours of flight time since retiring in 2013. - WAPO

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President Trump made a joke about his reversal of Obama-era policies during the annual pardoning of Thanksgiving turkeys on Tuesday. Trump pardoned two turkeys, Wishbone and Drumstick, during the White House tradition at the Rose Garden. He mentioned the turkeys - Tater and Tot - that Obama pardoned last year. "As many of you know, I have been very active in overturning some of my predecessor's executive actions," Trump said. He joked that the White House counsel informed him that "Tater and Tot's pardons cannot under any circumstances be revoked," adding "Tater and Tot, you can rest easy." Wishbone and Drumstick will join Tater and Tot to live at "Gobbler's Rest" at Virginia Tech. - CBS

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The U.S. Justice Department has asked Harvard University to turn over records related to student admissions or face a potential lawsuit. The federal government is investigating whether the school's admission policies violate Title VI of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. Under the law, institutions that receive federal funding are barred from discriminating based on color, race or national origin. The Wall Street Journal reported that the department is investigating allegations similar to a 2014 lawsuit, which claimed the school's admissions discriminated against Asian-Americans. Harvard has until December 1 to turn in documents about its policies, or the Justice Department said it "may file a lawsuit." - REUTERS

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German authorities arrested a man in connection with the stolen diaries and other personal belongings of the late Beatles singer John Lennon. Police recently recovered about 100 items believed to be Lennon's and stolen from his widow, Yoko Ono, in New York about 11 years ago. The items include three diaries, a handwritten music score, two pairs of glasses and a cigarette case. Police arrested an unidentified 58-year-old man in Berlin on suspicion of fraud and handling of stolen goods. Police said a second suspect, believed to be a former employee of Ono, is in Turkey and "unattainable" at this time. - BBC

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Actor Sacha Baron Cohen has offered to pay the fines of six tourists who were detained in Kazakhstan for dressing as his character Borat. The Czech tourists reportedly wore black wigs and neon green “mankinis” when they were fined $67 each for minor hooliganism. In a Facebook post on Tuesday, Cohen wrote: "To my Czech mates who were arrested. Send me your details and proof that it was you, and I'll pay your fine." He provided them with the email address arrestedforwearingyourmankini@gmail.com. Cohen wore the mankini swimsuit in the 2006 movie "Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan." - AP

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