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General Motors forms new development team to speed up work on self-driving and electric cars

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General Motors Co said on Thursday it was creating a team to speed up development of self-driving and electric cars, as it moves to expand its line-up of such vehicles.

Doug Parks, GM’s vice president for global product programs, was named vice president for autonomous technology and vehicle execution, as of Feb. 1.

Parks will oversee efforts to develop new electrical and battery systems and software for the vehicles, and report to Mark Reuss, head of global product development, GM said in a statement.

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Parks has held several engineering and finance roles at the automaker since 1984. Prior to becoming vice president for global product programs in August 2012, he was executive director and group vehicle line executive for electric cars.

Sheri Hickok was named executive chief engineer for “autonomous joint ventures and fleet execution,” GM said. Hickok is currently chief engineer for “next generation” pickup trucks.

Pam Fletcher, GM’s executive chief engineer for electric vehicles, will take on additional responsibilities for strategic planning related to autonomous and electric vehicles.

GM plans to launch late this year the electric Chevrolet Bolt, which would run about 200 miles on a charge, priced at about $35,000. That is roughly double the range of other electric cars in that price range.

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Earlier this month, GM said it was investing $500 million in ride-hailing company Lyft, and said it planned to work with Lyft to develop an on-demand network of driverless cars.

(Reporting by Joseph White; Editing by Richard Chang)

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Stephen Colbert rips ‘idiot’ GOP senator for defending Trump’s unconstitutional self-dealing

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"Late Show" host Stephen Colbert returned from New Zealand for a new show that aired Monday evening.

"I have been as far from the insatiable black hole of news that is Donald Trump as you can get on this planet.

I've heard there have been some developments over the last 10 days that did not go well for Donnie,"

The host ripped Trump's 71-minute press conference.

"Seventy-one minutes is not a press conference, it's a one man show," he explained. "If you liked 'Fleabag,' you'll love Donald Trump in 'Douchebag,'" he said.

[caption id="attachment_1555275" align="aligncenter" width="800"] ‘The Late Show’ graphic (screengrab)[/caption]

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Texas Republicans are abandoning the state’s GOP Speaker: ‘We no longer support him’

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Some of the most powerful Texas House Republicans said Monday they no longer support GOP Speaker Dennis Bonnen, marking the biggest blow yet to his political future amid the fallout from a secret recording released last week by a hardline conservative activist.

Five Republicans considered senior members of the lower chamber issued a statement withdrawing support for him: State Reps. Four Price of Amarillo, Dan Huberty of Houston, Lyle Larson of San Antonio, Chris Paddie of Marshall and John Frullo of Lubbock.

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Donald Trump is making a mockery of Marco Rubio — and the Florida senator is letting him

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Sen. Marco Rubio was once one of Donald Trump’s most formidable opponents; now, the Florida senator bends over backward to excuse the president’s corruption.

In 2016, Rubio and Trump sparred frequently on the Republican primary debate stage. Trump picked the uninspired nickname “Little Marco” for the senator, which didn’t seem to do much damage on its own, but Rubio never gained the momentum or strength that his backers hoped would prove to be strong enough to take down the reality TV candidate. As Rubio grew desperate, he launched one of his most memorable and pitiful attacks by stooping to his opponent’s level, implying that Trump had a small penis. It was more of an embarrassing moment for Rubio than anyone else, though Trump helped himself with a crude rejoinder.

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