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News Wrap: Trump defends Juneteenth rally in Tulsa as ‘a celebration’

In our news wrap Friday, President Trump defended his plans for a campaign rally on June 19 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The day, known as Juneteenth, commemorates the end of slavery, and Tulsa was the site of a white-on-black massacre in 1921. Also, the drive to reform policing in the United States is gaining momentum. New York state has moved to ban chokeholds and release police disciplinary records.

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  • Judy Woodruff:

    The drive to reform policing in America is gaining more momentum. New York state moved today to ban choke holds and to release police disciplinary records.

    Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the changes into law in Albany. He also said he will tie state funding to local action.

  • Governor Andrew Cuomo:

    We're not going to fund police agencies in this state that do not look at what has — look at what has been happening, come to terms with it, and reform themselves. We're not going to be, as a state government, subsidizing improper police tactics. We're not doing it.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    Meanwhile, Louisville, Kentucky's City Council enacted Breonna's law banning no-knock warrants. It is named for Breonna Taylor, who was killed by police inside her home.

    And President Trump said that he would favor ending police use of choke holds, except in limited circumstances. He also demanded again that the city of Seattle end the occupation of its Capitol Hill neighborhood by protesters.

    In the presidential campaign, Mr. Trump defended his plan for a campaign rally on June 19th in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The day is known as Juneteenth and commemorates the end of slavery. And Tulsa was the site of a white-on-black massacre in 1921.

    But, in a FOX News interview, the president dismissed the criticism.

  • President Donald Trump:

    You can really think about that very positively as a celebration, because a rally, to me, is a celebration.

    It's going to be really a celebration. And it's an interesting date. It wasn't done for that reason, but it's an interesting date, but it's a celebration.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    Mr. Trump also plans to accept the Republican renomination for president in Jacksonville, Florida, on August 27. On that date in 1960, a white mob attacked black protesters in Jacksonville, an incident now known as Ax Handle Saturday.

    A federal appeals court in Washington heard arguments today over ending the prosecution of Michael Flynn. The Justice Department wants to drop charges against President Trump's former national security adviser. He pled guilty to lying to the FBI in the Russia probe, and then tried to withdraw the plea.

    More U.S. businesses got the green light to reopen today, from bars in Iowa and wineries in Northern California to the San Diego Zoo. But Utah and Oregon delayed further action, as COVID-19 infections keep growing.

    Still, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said that is not yet clear what's causing the resurgence. Officials cited several possible factors during a teleconference.

  • Jay C. Butler:

    Sometimes, an increase is driven by increased availability of testing. Sometimes, it's driven by outbreaks. And we have seen outbreaks in certain occupational settings, in long-term care facilities. Early on, we saw clusters of infections in shelters for people experiencing homelessness.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    The CDC also posted guidelines that had been expected for weeks. They range from avoiding elevators to safely attending concerts. They do not address such issues as going to church or dating.

    New protests erupted in Hong Kong today, marking one year since a violent clash with police. Thousands of people demonstrated at busy shopping malls. They carried banners and chanted slogans calling for Hong Kong's independence. Riot police stood by, and there was no word of violence.

    The prime minister of Lebanon held emergency cabinet talks today, and the central bank agreed to try to shore up the economy amid nationwide protests. Beirut woke this morning to streets covered in shattered glass and broken storefronts after clashes between demonstrators and security forces.

    Back in this country, the Trump administration formally ended protections for transgender people against discrimination in health care. The final rule defines gender as a person's biological sex. An Obama era rule defined it as an internal sense of being male, female or some combination.

    And Wall Street managed a partial comeback from Thursday's rout. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 477 points to close at 25605. The Nasdaq rose 96 points, and the S&P 500 added 39. Even so, it was the worst weekly loss since late March.

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