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San Francisco to offer free community college to residents: mayor

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San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee said on Tuesday the city would become the first in the United States to offer tuition-free community college to its residents, framing the move as a way of helping to narrow wealth inequality in the city.

The $5.4 million plan also includes $500 grants to low-income City College of San Francisco students to spend on books, transportation, school supplies and healthcare, Lee said in a posting on online publishing site Medium.com. Grants of $200 would also be made available to poor part-time students, he said.

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“At a time when the political rhetoric is punishing those who are less fortunate, San Francisco has again united around our values and taken the national lead on this important issue of equality,” Lee said.

The mayor’s office did not return a call for comment beyond the posting.

The college charges $46 per unit, according to its website. The plan is to take effect in the fall.

San Francisco Supervisor Jane Kim spearheaded the initiative. Kim was endorsed last year by U.S. Senator and presidential candidate Bernie Sanders in her unsuccessful state senate bid.

Both she and Sanders ran campaigns that focused in part on dealing with the crisis of student debt, which totals more than $1 trillion in the United States.

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During a news conference on Monday, Kim said San Francisco has “the fastest growing income gap of any city across the nation,” citing research from the Brookings Institute.

“We as politicians, as policymakers are responsible for at least trying to reverse those trends. And one of the best ways we can do that is investing in our citizens,” she said.

The plan aims to increase enrollment at the community college by 20 percent.

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The San Francisco Chronicle newspaper reported that funding will come from a real estate transfer tax that was approved by voters last November.

(Reporting by Curtis Skinner in San Francisco)

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GOP will be ‘aided and abetted’ by Russian bots and trolls defending Trump: Former FBI counter-intel chief

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The former assistant director for counterintelligence at the Federal Bureau of Investigation warned Americans to "hunker down" because Russian intelligence will be repeating Republican talking points.

Frank Figliuzzi was interviewed Thursday by MSNBC's Brian Williams on "The Last Word."

"Frank, Fiona Hill -- who richly deserves it -- has been awarded front page status tomorrow morning on the front page of The New York Times, and I imagine newspapers and websites across this country," Williams noted.

"It was extraordinary today when she -- in effect, begged -- asked, certainly, members of the committee to stop supplying Russian talking points, to stop advancing Russian propaganda in the Congress of the United States," he continued.

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Trump has committed 6 impeachable offenses: Harvard Law’s Laurence Tribe says ‘the evidence is all there’

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Constitutional law expert Laurence Tribe broke down the six impeachable offenses President Donald Trump has committed during a Thursday appearance on MSNBC's "The Last Word" with Lawrence O'Donnell.

Tribe has argued 36 cases before the United States Supreme Court and taught at Harvard Law for 50 years. He co-authored the 2018 book To End a Presidency: The Power of Impeachment with Joshua Matz.

"Everyone was in the loop, it was no secret. That was the testimony from Ambassador Gordon Sondland yesterday as he implicated the president, Secretary of State, White House chief of staff, and former National Security Advisor John Bolton and other administration officials in the plot to bribe the president of Ukraine to publicly launch an investigation into Joe Biden in exchange for U.S. military aid to Ukraine that was authorized by Congress and that the president was withholding," O'Donnell reported.

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Rachel Maddow breaks down how public opinion is catching up with the facts of Trump’s impeachment

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MSNBC anchor Rachel Maddow on Thursday broke down how the details from the televised impeachment hearings are being reported in local newspapers.

The host read the headlines from multiple newspapers following the damning testimony by Ambassador Gordon Sondland.

The Los Angels Times headlined, "Sonland implicates president." "Envoy says Trump directed effort," was The Wall Street Journal headline.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch headlined, "'Everyone was in the loop. It was no secret': Defiant Sondland says he followed Trump's orders."

"Trump directed pressure on Ukraine, ambassador says," headlined The Kansas City Star.

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