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Bill Cosby continues Canadian tour amid new sexual assault allegations

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Bill Cosby, the subject of more than a dozen sex abuse allegations over the past three months, will go ahead with three Canadian shows this week, coming as more women leveled accusations against the comedian.

Protesters geared up to heckle Cosby and some fans tried to offload their tickets for the three performances in Ontario beginning on Wednesday.

Cosby, best-known as Dr. Cliff Huxtable on The Cosby Show, has had two television projects shelved and several standup performances canceled since the allegations started last year.

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He is slated to perform shows three cities in Ontario – Kitchener, London and Hamilton – this week.

Demonstrations are planned outside each venue by supporters of sexual abuse survivors. Some people were trying to sell their tickets on social media while others donated them to sexual assault support groups.

Cosby, 77, has never been charged over the allegations, which date as far back as the 1960s. He settled a 2005 civil suit that alleged sexual misconduct.

“We knew him as the warm Dr. Huxtable but the allegations paint a different picture and we can’t really support that,” said Wendy Carmichael, 62, who lost C$300 re-selling her four tickets to Wednesday’s show.

Event promoter Innovation Arts & Entertainment said the venues are contractually obliged to hold the shows, but acknowledged it was an “unpopular” decision and urged protesters not to direct their vitriol at the venues or staff.

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In Los Angeles, celebrity attorney Gloria Allred, known for her aggressive support of women who claim to be victims of abuse or harassment, held a news conference with three women who allege Cosby drugged them and was sexually aggressive toward them.

One of the women, Lynn Neal, alleges Cosby raped her in his dressing room at the Hilton hotel in Las Vegas where he was performing.

“I was in shock as I had no idea that he would do this to me,” Neal said. “I looked at him as a big brother or fatherly figure that I admired.”

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Megan Walker, executive director of the London, Ontario-based Abused Women’s Centre, said she expects several hundred protesters outside Thursday’s show in London.

Cosby’s publicist and attorney did not respond to requests seeking comment.

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Cosby Show co-star Phylicia Rashad defended Cosby on Tuesday, telling website Showbiz 411 to “forget these women.”

“What you’re seeing is the destruction of a legacy. And I think it’s orchestrated,” she said.

(Reporting by Andrea Hopkins and Eric Kelsey; Additional reporting by Reuters TV in Los Angeles; Editing by Mary Milliken and Leslie Adler)

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UK’s Boris Johnson looks set for big win in ‘Brexit election’

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Prime Minister Boris Johnson's ruling party appeared on course for a sweeping victory in Thursday's snap election, an exit poll showed, paving the way for Britain to leave the EU next month after years of political deadlock.

The Conservatives were forecast to win a thumping 368 out of 650 seats in parliament -- which if confirmed would be the party's biggest majority in three decades -- according to the survey published as polls closed.

The pound jumped by about two percent against the dollar on the projected results of what all sides had painted as the most momentous election in Britain in a generation.

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Maddow reports on ‘a tide of major newspaper editorials’ drowning Trump’s impeachment defenses

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On Thursday, MSNBC's Rachel Maddow noted the sheer volume of editorial boards from newspapers across America calling for President Donald Trump's impeachment and removal from office.

"The editorials that Steve Cohen introduced into the record there that Doug Collins from Georgia said he wanted to read and Steve Cohen said 'I'd love for you to read them,' they're part of a tide of major newspaper editorials that have come out all of a sudden in the last few days in favor of impeachment," said Maddow. "USA TODAY's editorial board saying, quote, 'Until recently we believed impeachment proceedings would be unhealthy for an already polarized nation, rather than simply leaving Trump's fate up to voters next November. But Trump's egregious transgressions and stonewalling in his thuggish effort to trade American arms for foreign dirt on Joe Biden resembled Richard Nixon. It's precisely the type of misconduct the framers had in mind when they wrote impeachment into the Constitution."

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‘People died in Ukraine’: Democrat lectures Doug Collins for Trump’s abuse of power costing lives

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During Thursday's impeachment hearing, Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA) laid bare the human cost of President Donald Trump's decision to withhold military aid from Ukraine to force them to hunt for dirt on former Vice President Joe Biden's family — something that ranking member Doug Collins (R-GA) spent the previous day denying.

"In my colleague's efforts to defend this president, you want him to be someone he's not. You want him to be someone he is telling you he is not," said Swalwell. "You're trying to defend the call in so many different ways, and he's saying, guys, it was a perfect call. He's not who you want him to be. And let me tell you how selfish his acts were. And ranking member Collins, you can deny this as much as you want. People died in Ukraine at the hands of Russia," said Swalwell. "In Ukraine, since September 2018 when it was voted on by Congress, was counting on our support. One year passed and people died. And you may not want to think about that, it may be hard for you to think about that, but they died when the selfish, selfish president withheld the aid for his own personal gain."

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