He’s been ousted. Tony Abbott lost a battle to stay in power today following a challenge for his Liberal Party leadership by senior cabinet minister Malcolm Turnbull. Voicing his concern that the coalition government could lose the next election unless a change was made, Turnbull said he was seeking to bolster the party to help it stay in power. Abbott, who has suffered in recent opinion polls, had vowed to fight and win today’s vote. But he was defeated 44 to 54, and Turnbull will soon be sworn in Down Under.
The Presidential Daily Brief
Delta State is on lockdown as police go after what they’re describing as an active shooter in a case that’s left a male professor dead. The school, which has about 4,000 undergrad and graduate students enrolled, used Twitter to warn everyone to stay calm and keep away from windows as police attempted to neutralize the threat. Meanwhile, the country coroner confirmed the single fatality — history professor Ethan Schmidt — but the school promised more information as soon as it becomes available.
This won’t be good for tourism. Mexicans who were planning to camp out last night in Egypt’s Western Desert instead fell victim to an anti-terror operation. The Egyptian military mistakenly killed 12, including the foreign visitors, and injured 10. The soldiers were chasing militants in the desert when they reportedly aimed an Apache helicopter at a tourist convoy. It remains unclear whether the civilian vehicles were in the area legally, but Mexico’s President Enrique Peña Nieto is demanding answers, and Egypt’s interior ministry has launched an investigation.
They had to run for their lives. Gov. Jerry Brown yesterday declared a state of emergency as fires destroyed nearly 1,000 homes and commercial buildings in Northern California, forcing thousands to flee. The so-called Valley Fire northwest of Sacramento erupted over the weekend, with entire towns being evacuated and flames spreading so quickly that many residents struggled to get dressed before heading out the door. Crews continue to battle the blazes, but the state’s ongoing drought and high temperatures are making the situation “explosive,” according to one official.
So much for freedom of movement. Berlin imposed border checks yesterday — despite the Schengen Agreement’s passport-free zone — in response to a huge surge of migrants. Train services from Austria to Germany were halted overnight before resuming this morning, a sign of frustration with the EU’s refusal to share the burden. Bloc leaders will vote today on a plan to relocate 40,000 asylum seekers through mandatory quotas, but central and eastern European states are opposed. The U.N. warns that thousands could fall into “legal limbo” as countries adopt different immigration controls.
They’ve taken another beating. Smaller stocks in China fell nearly 7 percent today, with the benchmark Shanghai Composite dropping 2.7 percent and the Shenzhen Composite falling 6.7 percent. These slides — their worst since August 25 — followed mixed economic data that showed retail sales up to nearly 11 percent, but industrial output missing its forecasts. Fears that policy-makers may not take steps to bolster the economy as a result may have led to the dip, and while jitters were feared on global markets, Europe hasn’t yet shown signs of panic.
Russia’s defying U.S. warnings, flying over Iran and Iraq. (NYT)
Kim Davis returns to work, says she won’t interfere with licenses. (USA Today)
Trump, Carson out in front for GOP race. (Washington Post)
Malaysian police arrest three in Bangkok blast. (Al Jazeera)
Missouri commission seeks sweeping changes after Michael Brown killing. (NYT)
Right path, wrong carriage. American Airlines sent an Airbus A321S — not certified to fly long distances over water — instead of an A321H from Los Angeles to Honolulu last month, breaking FAA rules. Staff noticed the error shortly after takeoff but decided to carry on, noting that the plane was equipped with safety gear. How a crew departed in a plane bearing the wrong tail number remains unclear, but the airline assures that it has updated its software in a bid to straighten up … and fly right.
He swears it’s authentic. Dr. Paul Booth believes he has found the first use of the English-speaking world’s preferred four-letter word for fornication. While trawling through court documents dating from 1310, he came across the word in an unfortunate man’s name: Roger F*ckebythenavel. Booth says the name refers to either an “inexperienced copulator” or an “extravagant explanation for a dimwit,” and predates the previous record by 200 years. He’s informed the Oxford English Dictionary of his discovery, but they have yet to send word.
Will these highs stay above the law? Synthetic mind-altering substances produced in China and India are taking Europe by storm. In the last year, more than a hundred new varieties entered the Continent’s bloodstreams. This 25 percent increase, part of a decade-long surge, means traditional drugs are taking a hit, but don’t bet the pharm yet: Some of these new substances are potentially more dangerous than their criminal counterparts, thanks to unknown ingredients. And the designer drug business is burgeoning so quickly that authorities are unable to keep up.
Luz, cámara, acción! Venezuelan first-time director Lorenzo Vigas collected the Golden Lion, the festival’s top prize, for gay love story Desde Alla (From Afar) this weekend. The Silver Lion award for best direction, meanwhile, went to Argentina’s Pablo Trapero for The Clan. The festival — whose jury was headed this year by Mexican director Alfonso Cuarón — also featured three major Hollywood world premieres: 3-D saga Everest, church sex abuse drama Spotlight, and Johnny Depp’s mobster flick Black Mass, all of which are stirring Oscar buzz.
He’s quietly playing the game’s best tennis. The men’s No. 1 just tallied win 27 — to Serena Williams’ 26 — beating Federer 6-4, 5-7, 6-4, 6-4, despite a rain delay and a second-set loss. The Serb, 28, prevailed with his third Grand Slam of the year, noting that he’s learned to savor success more as a husband and father. But those who feared the great men’s rivalry would end, take heart: Switzerland’s 34-year-old legend vowed to return again next year.