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Judge reinstates Seth Rich’s family’s lawsuit against Fox News, citing its ‘campaign of emotional torture’

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This Friday, an appeals court reinstated a 2017 lawsuit filed against Fox News by the parents of slain DNC staffer Seth Rich. According to the Rich family, Fox pushed unverified claims about his murder and disseminated conspiracy theories suggesting his murder was linked to DNC emails released by Wikileaks during the 2016 election, Law & Crime reports.

Joel and Mary Rich say the resulting right-wing media complex’s obsession with their son’s murder caused them “emotional distress.”

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Fox News retracted its initial story on Rich’s murder one week after it was published in May of 2017, saying it “was not initially subjected to the high degree of editorial scrutiny.”

Last year, the lawsuit was thrown out by a lower court judge who said it failed to “adequately allege essential elements of the causes of action asserted.” But this Friday, a panel of federal appeals court judges in New York said that throwing out the lawsuit was the wrong decision.

“The Riches’ complaint plausibly alleges enough facts to state a claim for intentional infliction of emotional distress — for extreme and outrageous conduct by [Fox News],” the judges wrote. “We have no trouble concluding that — taking their allegations as true — the Riches plausibly alleged what amounted to a campaign of emotional torture.”

In a statement responding to the ruling, Fox News continued to insist that their coverage of Rich’s murder wasn’t misleading.

“The court’s ruling today permits Mr. and Mrs. Rich to proceed with discovery to determine whether there is a factual basis for their claims against FOX News,” the statement read. “And while we extend the Rich family our deepest condolences for their loss, we believe that discovery will demonstrate that FOX News did not engage in conduct that will support the Riches’ claims. We will be evaluating our next legal steps.”

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In July of 2016, the 27-year-old staffer was shot and killed in Washington D.C. near his home. Police have ruled his murder to be the result of a botched robbery and have found no evidence that his killing was linked to the release of DNC emails.


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We’ll ‘come out stronger’: Michelle Obama weighs in on Trump’s ‘surreal’ impeachment

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Former first lady Michelle Obama went on NBC's "Today" on Monday to talk about the impeachment of President Donald Trump.

During her NBC interview, Obama described the Trump impeachment as "surreal" and predicted that the United States would come back stronger afterward.

"I don't think people know what to make of it," she said. "But do I think we can come back from it? Oh yeah."

Obama then put Trump's impeachment in historical perspective.

"We've seen tough times in this country," she said. "You know we've gone through depressions and wars and bombings and terrorist attacks, and we've gone through Jim Crow, and we've always come out stronger. And that's what we have to continue to believe because what's our choice? To ball up in a corner and call it a day? Well that's not fair to this next generation that's coming before us that are counting on us to get this right."

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How Bill Barr will try to destroy his own DOJ report blowing up Trump’s ‘Deep State’ conspiracy theory

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In a column for the Daily Beast, longtime political observer Michael Tomasky warns that Attorney General Bill Barr will continue to act as Donald Trump's personal lawyer and will undercut Inspector General Michael Horowitz's report that is expected to show no "Deep State" conspiracy against the president.

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Here are six hints that baby Jesus stories were added much later to early Christian legends

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The wonder-filled birth story of the baby Jesus was centuries in the making.

Picture a creche with baby Jesus in a manger and shepherds and angels and three kings and a star over the stable roof. We think of this traditional scene as representing the Christmas story, but it actually mixes elements from two different nativity stories in the Bible, one in Matthew and one in Luke, with a few embellishments that got added in later centuries. What was the historical kernel? Most likely we will never know, because it appears that the Bible’s nativity stories are themselves highly-embellished late add-ons to the Gospels.

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