He’s shaking things up. Donald Trump won’t be pursuing charges against Hillary Clinton, a top aide has said. In a video released yesterday, Trump vowed to withdraw from the Trans-Pacific Partnership on the first day of his presidency, but didn’t mention his promised Mexican border wall or a registry of Muslims. He’s mostly eluded the media lately, but will meet with the New York Times today — reportedly to discuss what Trump has called their “nasty” campaign coverage. Meanwhile, participants in Trump’s talks with foreign leaders say he’s used political meetings to advocate for his business projects in Scotland and Argentina.
The Presidential Daily Brief
This was a step too far. The Turkish government doesn’t often make concessions to public outcry, but it has agreed to withdraw a bill that would have overturned convictions for sexual assault against children if the perpetrators married the victims. Now President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says the bill will be rewritten to find a “compromise” with those who say it legitimizes rape. Meanwhile, the EU will vote this week on suspending talks on Turkey’s potential admission to the bloc. Experts expect a temporary freeze, while Erdogan’s acting casual.
They were headed home from school. Johnthony Walker, 24, has been charged with reckless driving, reckless endangerment and vehicular homicide after he wrapped a Chattanooga school bus around a tree Monday. Six Woodmore Elementary students, aged between 5 and 10, have reportedly died, while dozens were injured and several remain in serious condition. Investigators are now looking into what caused the crash as school administrators prepare for a day of mourning, while blood donation centers in the area stayed open late to accommodate long lines of donors.
Does the Donald always get what he wants? The president-elect has tweeted that British ultranationalist Nigel Farage would make a great ambassador to the U.S., though Prime Minister Theresa May rebuffed the suggestion. Trump’s also been vocally opposed to British wind farms — perhaps, some suspect, because two of them mar views from his Scottish golf course. But Britain may cling to its relationship with the U.S. as Canada says U.K. trade is far from its top priority, and billionaire Richard Branson joins the fight to reverse the Brexit referendum.
Know This: Tsunami warnings have been lifted after a magnitude-7.4 earthquake near Fukushima raised alarms. As Italy puts notorious people-smuggler Medhanie Yehdego Mered on trial, a man claiming to be the real Mered says they’ve got the wrong man. And Melbourne’s had an outbreak of “thunderstorm asthma.”
Read This: A growing number of presidential electors are rebelling against the electoral college — but not to help Hillary Clinton, who won the popular vote.
Watch This: OZY’s own Carlos Watson gives a fresh take on Trump’s upcoming agenda on Anderson Cooper’s 360°.
Yeezus is bowing out. West was hospitalized for exhaustion in Los Angeles just hours after canceling the remainder of his long-awaited Saint Pablo tour. At a show this weekend, the outspoken rapper stopped the music, ranting for 30 minutes against (among others) Beyoncé, Mark Zuckerberg and Hillary Clinton, before abruptly ending the performance after four songs. He’d already alienated some fans by admitting he would have voted for Donald Trump. Though tickets will be refunded, many believe the king of hip-hop could be approaching a career downturn.
Time to soak up the rays. Ukraine had been seeking investors for a solar project as it observed the 30th anniversary of the worst commercial nuclear disaster in history. Now two Chinese companies have announced plans to turn the site of the catastrophe into a massive 1-gigawatt solar farm. The Chernobyl Exclusion Zone, which covers 1,000 square miles around the abandoned reactor, still contains too much radiation to be used for agriculture or forestry. But the land is cheap, and there’s already electrical infrastructure in place to once again produce energy.
They’re feeling blue. Democrats’ stunning Election Day losses have raised a slew of questions about the path forward. Will they double down on liberalism and demographic destiny? Tack to the center? Reconnect with the working class? The coming Democratic National Committee chairman’s race will offer clues. Dems will choose among Rep. Keith Ellison, a Black Muslim progressive firebrand; former chief Howard Dean, who presided over banner successes in the 2006 and 2008 elections; and upstart South Carolina party leader Jaime Harrison, who brings a red-state perspective.
It’s a controversial — but welcome — move. Pope Francis has granted ordinary priests permission to absolve women of getting abortions instead of requiring repentant Catholics to seek forgiveness from a bishop. Though terminating a pregnancy remains a “grave sin” in Catholicism, many see this as an important step in reforming the Church’s long-complicated relationship with reproductive and women’s rights. With all priests now able to grant forgiveness, many women who have been ostracized by their Catholic communities may now feel able to move toward reconciliation.
Jurgen, you’re gone. After five up-and-down years, a dispiriting 4-0 World Cup qualifying loss to Costa Rica was the final straw for the German coach, who was officially let go yesterday. Klinsmann had some major wins — including a run to the Final 16 in the 2014 World Cup — but was never able to bring consistent success. The men’s chances of making the 2018 World Cup are now in serious peril, and U.S. Soccer is now reportedly turning to former coach Bruce Arena for the revival mission.