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News Wrap: Severe storms across the South kill at least 7

In our news wrap Thursday, severe storms killed at least seven people in parts of the South late Wednesday. Reported tornadoes struck in Texas, Louisiana and Oklahoma before moving east to Mississippi and Alabama. Also, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to curb the Clean Water Act as the Trump administration had wanted. A 6-3 decision found that the law can include pollution released into the ground.

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  • Judy Woodruff:

    In the day's other news: Wall Street rallied for a time, but could not hold its ground.

    The Dow Jones industrial average gained just 39 points to close at 23515. The Nasdaq fell a fraction, the S&P 500 slipped 1.5 points.

    At least seven people have died in severe storms rolling across the South. Reported tornadoes struck in Texas, Louisiana and Oklahoma late Wednesday, and the front moved east to Mississippi and Alabama. A barrage of apparent twisters hit Southern Oklahoma. Other storms killed three people and destroyed nearly 50 homes around Onalaska, Texas, where the county executive surveyed damage today.

  • Judge Sydney Murphy:

    I think there are a lot of us that have never seen anything like this before. The swathe from this tornado was huge. It was very wide.

    And, of course, part of it, as we all ran around with our face masks, is that this community is now facing two disaster declarations at the same time.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    The storm system already knocked out power to more than 150,000 customers from Texas to Georgia.

    Back in this country, the U.S. Supreme Court refused today to curb the Clean Water Act, as the Trump administration wanted. The 6-to-3 decision said that the law includes pollution released into the ground, if it ultimately reaches waterways.

    Separately, by 5-4, the court allowed deportations of immigrants who are permanent residents if they have committed a crime. It could affect thousands of people.

    A federal judge in Chicago has dismissed Jussie Smollett's lawsuit alleging malicious prosecution. The actor sued the city after being charged with falsely reporting a racist and homophobic beating. The judge ruled that Smollett cannot bring his claim until proceedings against him have ended.

    And American eighth-graders' test scores in U.S. history and geography have declined. The latest assessment, from 2018, shows a drop from four years earlier. Only 15 percent of students were proficient in U.S. history, and only 25 percent in geography. The scores could worsen further as the pandemic disrupts the current school year.

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