In our news wrap Thursday, a state judge in New York ordered President Trump to pay $2 million to settle a lawsuit alleging he funneled money from his charitable foundation to his 2016 presidential campaign. The Trump Foundation denied wrongdoing but has closed its doors and will disburse remaining funds to other nonprofits. Also, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo accused Iran of “nuclear extortion.”
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A career State Department official is the latest to say President Trump pressed Ukraine to investigate his political foes.
Impeachment investigators released George Kent's private testimony today. In it, he also says that the president's lawyer Rudy Giuliani waged a campaign of lies to oust the U.S. ambassador to Kiev.
Meanwhile, Vice President Pence again defended his boss, in New Hampshire.
Vice President Mike Pence:
The American people have the transcript of the president's call, and they can see there was no quid pro quo and the president did nothing wrong. What's going on in Washington, D.C., today is a disgrace.
Also today, the president denied asking U.S. Attorney General William Barr to defend his July phone call with Ukraine's leader or that Barr refused to do so.
We will get details after the news summary.
A state judge in New York has ordered President Trump to pay $2 million over claims that he misused his charitable foundation. The state charged that the Trump Foundation funneled money to his 2016 campaign. The foundation denied wrongdoing, but it has closed its doors and will disburse remaining funds to other nonprofits.
There is news tonight that former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is close to entering the Democratic presidential race. The "NewsHour" confirmed that he is seriously exploring and is expected to enter the Alabama primary next march. The 77-year-old billionaire had said that he wouldn't run, but his political adviser now says that Bloomberg believes the 16 Democrats whether running are not well-positioned to beat President Trump.
In Iraq, security forces killed at least six more protesters today and wounded 35 in Baghdad. They were shot as they tore down part of a barrier built to keep them from government offices in the so-called Green Zone. But the demonstrators remained defiant.
Man (through translator):
You politicians have destroyed the country. The security forces of both the Ministries of Defense and Interior are with you, hitting us. Why? Are you subordinate to these parties? These parties should be rooted out. No party will remain.
Later, four protesters were shot dead as security forces broke up a sit-in the southern city of Basra.
Tensions over Iran's nuclear program intensified today. Tehran has now resumed enriching uranium gas, violating a nuclear accord that the U.S. renounced last year. Today, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo condemned what he called nuclear extortion.
Meanwhile, Iran claimed that it barred a U.N. nuclear inspector last week because she had traces of explosives on her. The U.N. nuclear agency denied it.
The International Criminal Court handed down a maximum sentence of 30 years today for a Congolese warlord known as the Terminator. Bosco Ntaganda showed no emotion during his sentencing at The Hague in the Netherlands. He'd been convicted of war crimes and crimes against humanity. The case stemmed from Congo's bloody ethnic conflict in 2002 and 2003.
Police in France have dismantled two makeshift camps in Northern Paris, where more than 1,600 refugees had been living in tents. The migrants, mostly from sub-Saharan Africa, were escorted into buses. Authorities said they would be taken to public shelters, but support groups voiced concern.
Julie Lavayssiere (through translator):
We don't know yet what solutions are proposed, besides temporary housing in a sports hall. We knew that the situation in these camps was worsening and that nothing was done about that. But we regret that these are still temporary solutions and not preventive measures.
France has seen an influx of migrants and refugees, but the government has now pledged to — quote — "take back control" of immigration.
Funerals began in Northern Mexico today for nine Americans killed by drug cartel gunmen. About 500 mourners gathered in the farming town of La Mora 70 miles south of the Arizona border. A mother and two of her sons were the first to be laid to rest.
Meanwhile, the investigation continued. Officials say the killers may have mistaken the Americans for a rival gang.
Back in this country, Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson announced that he is retiring at year's end. He had acknowledged drinking before falling asleep at the wheel of his car at a stop sign. He had also been heavily criticized by President Trump over crime in Chicago.
Today, Johnson brushed aside the criticism, but acknowledged the wear and tear of three years as superintendent.
This job has taken its toll. It's taken a toll on my health, my family, my friends. But my integrity remains intact, and I'm proud of what the department has accomplished during my tenure.
Johnson took the post in 2016 amid an outcry over a white officer shooting a black teen 16 times.
The number of people with illnesses linked to vaping in the U.S. has passed the 2,000 mark, including 40 deaths. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported the numbers today. Separately, Juul Labs, the country's leading e-cigarettes-maker, said that it will halt sales of its mint-flavored products.
On Wall Street today, stocks rose after China said that any phase one trade deal with the U.S. would eliminate some tariff hikes. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 182 points to close at 27674. The Nasdaq rose nearly 24 points, and the S&P 500 added eight.
And the National Toy Hall of Fame has named its class of 2019. The new inductees are Matchbox cars, which debuted in 1953, the coloring book, first produced in the 1880s, and the collectible card game Magic: The Gathering, introduced in 1993.
We're familiar with all of them.