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At least 12 people killed as Texas floods forces home and prison evacuations

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At least 12 people, including five Army soldiers, have died in Texas due to torrential rain in the past week which has also damaged hundreds of homes and led the state to evacuate three prison facilities, officials said on Friday.

The U.S. Army and local rescue teams were using boats, helicopters and sniffer dogs to search for four soldiers who went missing when their military vehicle overturned in a flood-swollen creek on Thursday at Fort Hood in central Texas.

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Five other soldiers in the vehicle were killed while three more who survived were expected to be released from a hospital as early as Friday, a military official told a news conference.

“This tragedy extends well beyond Fort Hood and the outpouring of support from around the country is sincerely appreciated,” Major General John Uberti told reporters.

The vehicle overturned at a low-water crossing and military officials have not said why the convoy was training near a swollen waterway. The sprawling army post covering an area about 15 times larger than Manhattan was closing down flood-hit roads when the accident took place.

There was likely one more flood-related death in the state, San Antonio police said on Friday, after recovering the body of a man caught in metal bars at a river drainage site in the city.

The Texas Department of Criminal Justice began evacuating on Friday about 1,700 inmates at its Ramsey Unit in Rosharon, about 30 miles (50 km) south of Houston, due to flooding along the Brazos River.

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It evacuated about 2,600 inmates from two other facilities earlier this week due to flooding on the same river. Many of the inmates were sent to other units with available beds, it said.

The National Weather Service has placed large parts of Texas and Louisiana on a flash flood watch, including Houston and New Orleans.

Heavy rains are forecast to hit Houston and eastern Texas through the weekend, likely causing more flooding, it said. Some areas could see as much as 7 inches (18 cm).

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“Due to already saturated soils, even fairly brief, intense rainfall rates can easily cause roadway and low-land flooding over urban areas,” it said.

More than 150 flights have been canceled at airports in Dallas and Houston as of 1:00 p.m. (1800 GMT) on Friday due to the weather, according to tracking service FlightAware.com.

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(Reporting by Jon Herskovitz; Additional reporting by Jim Forsyth in San Antonio; Editing by Phil Berlowitz and James Dalgleish)


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Nicolle Wallace rains hell on GOP: ‘It’s going to take a dead Russian hooker’ before they wake up to Trump criminality

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MSNBC's Nicolle Wallace this week heaped scorn upon her former party for making their minds up about impeaching President Donald Trump seemingly before hearings even started.

"It's going to take a dead Russian hooker at the bottom of the Hudson before Republicans wake up," she said. "They don't care about anything -- and now they also don't care about foreign interference in domestic elections."

Wallace then said that Republicans should be very careful about embracing a precedent in which it is acceptable for presidents to use their office to pressure foreign countries to investigate their political opponents.

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Meghan McCain snaps at View co-hosts for getting ‘cheap applause’ after she’s schooled on impeachment hearings

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"The View" co-host Meghan McCain exploded after her fellow panelists criticized Rep. Will Hurd (R-TX) for signaling he would not support impeachment for President Donald Trump, despite the testimony placing him at the center of an apparent extortion scheme against Ukraine.

The conservative McCain pointed out that independents had lost support for impeachment since hearings began, and she played a clip of Hurd explaining why he didn't believe the evidence supported impeachment -- and her co-hosts wondered if he had heard the testimony.

"I think the point of the show is we live in a world where every panel has a different view," McCain said. "I also lived in Virginia -- Trump MAGA hat people everywhere -- and there are people in this country, and congresspeople like Mike Turner who are not convinced what happened."

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Mar-a-Lago to host event for conspiracy nuts who believed Obama was a secret Muslim

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President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago club is hosting an event for a far-right organization that once spread bogus conspiracy theories about former President Barack Obama being a secret Muslim.

The Washington Post reports that Trump's prized Florida resort on Saturday night will play host to the Center for Security Policy, a group that believes "mainstream Muslim organizations in the United States are secretly agents of anti-American jihad."

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