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Minnesota Gov. Dayton: Footage of Jamar Clark’s fatal shooting is inconclusive

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Video footage taken from the back of an ambulance does not appear to show conclusively what happened in the fatal shooting of an unarmed black man by a Minneapolis police officer a week ago, Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton said on Monday.

The shooting of Jamar Clark, 24, on Nov. 15 sparked more than a week of protests amid questions over whether he was handcuffed at the time and demands from protesters that authorities release videos of the incident.

Police have denied that Clark, who died the next day from a gunshot wound to the head, was handcuffed when he was shot. The officers involved have been identified.

“I have seen the tape,” Dayton told a news conference. “It doesn’t show anything that would provide any confirmation to one point of view or another.”

Dayton said he would not discuss details about the tape. As governor, Dayton has direct authority over the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, which is investigating the shooting along with the FBI.

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Federal authorities investigating whether Clark’s civil rights were violated have said release of videos and other evidence would be detrimental.

Dayton said the camera looked out the back door of the ambulance with the purpose of recording what would occur in the back of the vehicle.

“It is just a very brief fragment where Mr. Clark and one of the officers encounter each other and then they disappear from sight,” Dayton said.

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Dayton said there was nothing more of substance in the video until, it would appear, after the shot was fired, when one officer comes back into view.

Authorities have said there was no video of the shooting from police dashboard or body cameras, but investigators are reviewing video from business and security cameras in the area, as well as witnesses’ cell phones.

The shooting comes at a time of heightened debate in the United States over police use of lethal force, especially against black people. Over the past year, protests against killings of unarmed black men and women – some videotaped with phones or police cameras – have rocked a number of cities.

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The NAACP Minneapolis said in a statement that Dayton’s remarks reinforced the public’s need to see the videotape for themselves and to draw their own conclusions. The group supports an immediate release of videotapes.

Dayton has said he has urged that tapes be provided to Clark’s family and released publicly when they would not jeopardize a U.S. investigation.

Clark’s funeral is scheduled for Wednesday.

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Although protests have been largely peaceful, police have used pepper spray and fired rubber marking bullets at least twice when demonstrations became heated.

A police union representative has said Clark grabbed one officer’s gun, although the weapon remained in its holster.

(Reporting by David Bailey in Minneapolis; Editing by Tom Brown)


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Trump’s racism is ‘disqualifying’ for him to remain as president: former White House lawyer

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Former acting Solicitor General Neal Katyal explained on MSNBC on Thursday why he viewed President Donald Trump's racist attacks on four women of color in Congress as disqualifying.

Anchor Brian Williams read a quote from Susan Glasser of The New Yorker.

"Half of the country is appalled but not really sure how to combat him; the other half is cheering, or at least averting its gaze. This is what a political civil war looks like, with words, for now, as weapons," Glasser wrote.

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Lawrence O’Donnell reports on the growing movement for the impeachment of President Donald Trump

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Anchor Lawrence O'Donnell reported on the growing movement for the impeachment of President Donald Trump during Thursday evening's "The Last Word" on MSNBC.

"The House of Representatives conducted a symbolic vote on a hastily written impeachment resolution by Democratic Congressman Al Green in reaction to the president’s tweeted comments that the House of Representatives voted to condemn as racist," O'Donnell reported. "The impeachment resolution had nothing to do with the [Robert] Mueller investigation and referred only to the president being unfit for office because of the language that he has used recently about members of Congress and immigrants and asylum seekers."

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Video proves how far the Trump’s GOP has gone from the era of Ronald Reagan and HW Bush

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The immigration policies of Donald Trump’s presidency would have no room for his GOP predecessors Ronald Reagan or George H.W. Bush—who both embraced work visas, family unification, easy border crossings and a better relationship with Mexico.

That counterpoint can be seen in a very short video clip from the 1980 presidential election where Reagan and Bush—who became Reagan’s vice president for two terms before winning the presidency in 1988—were asked about immigration at a campaign debate in Texas. Their responses show just how far to the right the Republican Party’s current leader, President Trump, and voters who have not left the GOP to become self-described political independents, have moved on immigration.

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