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News Wrap: Mayor of Portland, Oregon, asks for ‘cease-fire’

In our news wrap Tuesday, the mayor of Portland, Oregon, is calling for a “cease-fire” and the removal of federal law enforcement from his city. Agents again used tear gas overnight after some protesters attacked a security fence at the federal courthouse. Also, news sources report that Russia is using English-language websites to spread disinformation about the coronavirus pandemic.

Read the Full Transcript

  • Judy Woodruff:

    Negotiations over another pandemic aid package are intensifying on Capitol Hill, with federal jobless benefits set to expire on Friday.

    Today's talks came as COVID cases nationwide topped 4.3 million, with 148,000 deaths.

    White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows met with Senate Republicans, but Majority Leader Mitch McConnell acknowledged his caucus is divided.

  • Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky:

    There are some members who think we have already done enough, other members who think we need to do more. This is a complicated problem.

    We have done the best we can to develop a consensus among the broadest number of Republican senators. And that's just the starting place. That's just where we begin in dealing with the other side and with the administration.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    Later, President Trump said that he does not support parts of the Republican bill. He did not elaborate.

    Meanwhile, McConnell also said that he opposes including nearly $2 billion for a new FBI headquarters near the Trump Hotel in Washington. He said that the White House insisted on including it.

    There is word this evening that Russia is using English-language Web sites to spread disinformation about the pandemic. The New York Times and the Associated Press say top Russian military intelligence operatives are targeting American and Western audiences. The reports cite U.S. government officials and newly declassified information.

    U.S. Attorney General William Barr defended his use of federal forces against civil unrest today. He told the House Judiciary Committee that — quote — "Violent rioters and anarchists have hijacked legitimate protests."

    Democrats charged, Barr has misused the Justice Department to defend President Trump.

    We will get much more after the news summary.

    The mayor of Portland Oregon, Ted Wheeler, is pressing for a cease-fire and the removal of federal agents from his city. Overnight, agents again used tear gas, after some protesters attacked a security fence at the federal courthouse. They have gathered near the site for two months.

    The Democratic presidential nominee-to-be, Joe Biden, called today for using economic aid to address racial inequities. It includes billions of dollars for minority-owned businesses and a tax credit for home ownership.

    The former vice president spoke in Wilmington, Delaware, and contrasted his approach with President Trump's.

  • Former Vice President Joseph Biden:

    He's shown that he can't beat the pandemic and keep you safe. He can't turn the economy around and get America back to work. And he is, horrifyingly and not surprisingly, intentionally stoking the flames of division and racism in this country.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    The proposals that Biden highlighted today are part of larger economic plans that he began to lay out earlier.

    The Trump administration will impose new curbs on DACA. That's the program that bars deporting people brought to the U.S. illegally as children. Under revised rules, new applications will be denied and renewals will be cut from two years to one. The administration is still mulling a way to end the program that will pass muster with the U.S. Supreme Court.

    We will have more on the story a little later in the program.

    Thousands of people filed past the U.S. Capitol throughout this day, as the body of the late Congressman John Lewis lay in state. They stood in socially distanced lines well into the evening to pay respects to the civil rights icon. Lewis' funeral will be Thursday in Atlanta.

    There is more economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic. The business group Conference Board reports that consumer confidence fell this month, as new infections surged. The Federal Reserve has extended seven emergency lending programs through year's end to aid in economic recovery.

    And the Miami Marlins has canceled its games through Sunday, after 15 players tested positive.

    And on Wall Street today, weak corporate earnings weighed stocks down. The Dow Jones industrial average lost 205 points to close at 26379. The Nasdaq fell 134 points, and the S&P 500 slipped 21.

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