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US spelling bee ends in historic eight-way tie

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The world’s premier spelling bee has ended in an unprecedented eight-way tie after hours of intense competition among American youngsters tackling some of the English language’s most obscure words.

Texas seventh-grader Rohan Raja became the eighth and final winner of the National Spelling Bee’s 92nd annual competition on Thursday after a correct recital of the word “odylic”, earning a wild round of applause from the audience.

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He hoisted the trophy with the seven other kids to survive the final round after successfully spelling a slate of tongue-twisters, including auslaut, erysipelas, bougainvillea, aiguillette, pendeloque, palama and cernuous.

The winners were “the most phenomenal assemblage of spellers in the history of this storied competition”, said the bee’s long-time official pronouncer Jacques Bailly.

Each will receive a $50,000 cash prize in addition to their own trophies, organizers said.

An American institution, the Scripps National Spelling Bee brought together more than 550 spellers from all over the country aged between seven and 14.

They were the elite among millions of youngsters, typically aged nine through 15, who competed in local and regional spelling bees this past school year.

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The competition has only tied six times in its history, though four titles in the last six years ended with a draw.

Seven of the eight winners are of Indian ancestry — a reflection of the popularity of competitive spelling among Indian immigrant families.

This was the twelfth year in a row that American youngsters of South Asian heritage clinched the title.

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China vows to retaliate for Trump’s Rose Garden press conference — and could impose new sanctions on America

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US President Donald Trump said Tuesday he was ending preferential trade treatment for Hong Kong and had signed into law an act that authorises sanctions on banks over China's clampdown in the international finance hub.

In a discursive news conference dominated by attacks on his domestic rivals, Trump declared himself to be the toughest president ever on China, a country he is increasingly positioning as his nemesis ahead of November elections.

Trump announced that he had issued an executive order on Hong Kong as he predicted decline for the restless city, on which Beijing recently imposed a tough new security law.

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2020 Election

Trump’s former White House doctor Ronny Jackson wins GOP runoff for Congress in Texas

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Ronny Jackson, the former White House physician and President Donald Trump's onetime nominee for secretary of veterans affairs, has won his bid for the Republican nomination for a solidly red congressional seat in the Texas Panhandle.

With 100% of polling locations reporting, though some mail-in ballots will still need to be counted, Jackson held a lead of 11 percentage points over Josh Winegarner, a veteran agriculture expert and lobbyist. Jackson and Winegarner were competing for a seat being vacated by U.S. Rep. Mac Thornberry, R-Clarendon, who is retiring and held the seat since 1995.

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Ivanka Trump’s tweet raises eyebrows: ‘Why is a senior White House official endorsing a food product?’

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As her big brother was dragging their 14-year-old half brother into the 2020 campaign, senior White House advisor Ivanka Trump was endorsing a line of canned food products.

If it’s Goya, it has to be good. Si es Goya, tiene que ser bueno. pic.twitter.com/9tjVrfmo9z

— Ivanka Trump (@IvankaTrump) July 15, 2020

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