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US winter storm knocks out power to 190,000 in North Carolina

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A powerful winter storm that hit the U.S. Southeast over the weekend knocked out power for more than 190,000 customers in North Carolina, officials said on Sunday.

Authorities urged residents to stay off the roads as snow, sleet, and freezing rain were expected to continue into Sunday, the National Weather Service said.

The agency reported between four and 12 inches (10 to 30 cm) of snow in some areas and warned about continuing snowfalls which could bring as much as a foot and a half (46 cm) from western and northern North Carolina to southwest Virginia.

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The storm prompted some 1,000 flight cancellations at Charlotte/Douglas International Airport, the sixth-busiest airport in the country, according to flight-tracking website FlightAware.

North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper said on Sunday that the state of emergency would remain in effect and that the North Carolina National Guard had been activated to help with the response.

The effects of the storm could last for days in the state, officials warned.

Utilities company Duke Energy Corp said on Friday the weather system could lead to more than 500,000 power outages in the Carolinas.

In North Raleigh, residents woke up to several inches of snow that blanketed roads, cars and homes. Many people took to Twitter to share photos of the unusually harsh weather, and the hashtag #Snowmageddon2018 was trending on Twitter on Sunday morning.

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In South Carolina, snow gave way to sleet and rain as temperatures hovered around freezing, the South Carolina Emergency Management Division said on Twitter.

The storm formed earlier this week off the Texas coast and moved east, lashing parts of Arkansas and Tennessee with icy rain.

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There are 51 votes to approve calling witnesses in Trump impeachment trial: PBS

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After pieces of John Bolton's manuscript leaked to the press confirming President Donald Trump's bribery of Ukraine, Republicans have turned to support the witnesses they once opposed.

Sens. Mitt Romney (R-UT) and Susan Collins (R-ME) both voted against witnesses and were leaning against them until Bolton's manuscript was leaked to the press after it was turned over to the White House for approval.

PBS News Hour reporter Lisa Desjardins tweeted Monday evening that the news tipped the scales and there were officially 51 votes to approve witnesses.

https://twitter.com/LisaDNews/status/1221951089647538177

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CNN

‘Give me a break’: CNN analyst explains why Trump defense of Rudy Giuliani was terrible

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While the Senate impeachment trial against President Donald Trump paused for a dinner break, CNN analysts responded to the White House's afternoon defense of the president was by blaming the Biden family.

Political commentator Gloria Borger noted that Trump lawyer, Eric Herschmann, going after former President Barack Obama just seemed desperate.

"Give me a break," she said. "What does that have to do with any of this right now? His defense boiled down to, 'He did it, so what? He did it. He was trying to root out corruption.' But if he was concerned about rooting out corruption, why haven't we seen more of that? His defense was, 'He had a reason to do it. It's OK. Therefore it was in the national interest.' This wasn't just about Joe Biden."

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2020 Election

State Department retaliated against NPR by kicking reporter off Mike Pompeo’s plane: report

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The U.S. State Department appears to be retaliating against National Public Radio (NPR) after Secretary of State Mike Pompeo suffered a caught-on-tape meltdown following an interview with NPR "All Things Considered" co-host Mary Louise Kelly.

According to PBS "Newshour" reporter Nick Schifrin, the State Department kicked NPR diplomatic correspondent Michele Kelemen off of Pompeo's jet.

"State Department removes NPR’s Michele Kelemen from Sec. Pompeo plane--where she was scheduled for a pool radio rotation--during upcoming trip to London, Kiev," Schifrin reported.

AFP State Department correspondent Shaun Tandon blasted the move on behalf of the State Department Correspondent's Association.

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