Clinton says ‘Deplorables’ comment is ‘grossly generalistic’
WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. (AP) — Hillary Clinton said Saturday that she was wrong to put half of Donald Trump’s supporters in a “basket of deplorables,” but she didn’t back down from describing his campaign as largely built on prejudice and paranoia. The Republican accused her of a “grotesque attack on American voters.”
Less than 24 hours after she made the comments at a private New York City fundraiser, Clinton said in a statement, “last night I was ‘grossly generalistic’ and that’s never a good idea. I regret saying ‘half’ — that was wrong.” But she argued that the word “deplorable” was reasonable to describe much of Trump’s campaign.
“He has built his campaign largely on prejudice and paranoia and given a national platform to hateful views and voices, including by retweeting fringe bigots with a few dozen followers and spreading their message to 11 million people,” the Democratic nominee said.
Responding in a statement, Trump said it was “disgraceful that Hillary Clinton makes the worst mistake of the political season and instead of owning up to this grotesque attack on American voters, she tries to turn it around with a pathetic rehash of the words and insults used in her failing campaign?”
Trump added that Clinton was showing “bigotry and hatred for millions of Americans,” arguing that she was “incapable to serve as President of the United States.”
In dash to November, campaigns pin hopes on turnout efforts
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Over pizza and cupcakes, Jose Nunez implored a crowd of University of Iowa students to pull out their smartphones and start sharing with online friends their personal reasons for backing Hillary Clinton for president.
Early voting in Iowa begins in late September, and the digital aide for the Clinton campaign said earnestly: “These stories are going to start making a difference.”
It’s a scene Clinton’s campaign is replicating in about a dozen of the most contested states as their aggressive voter turnout effort kicks into high gear for the sprint to Election Day, Nov. 8.
In Iowa alone, 25,000 volunteers are helping send real-time data on voters back to the campaign’s New York City headquarters, where dozens of analysts model the electorate.
The campaign says it has about a half-million volunteers in swing states, including 40,000 in North Carolina. In Florida, the largest of those pivotal states, it claims 90,000.
Rhetoric or real? N. Korea nuclear test may be a bit of both
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — North Korea’s latest nuclear test, its most powerful to date, is a game-changer … according to North Korea.
As with anything reported by Pyongyang, an authoritarian state run by a third-generation dictator who allows zero dissent or outside investigation, there’s reason to be skeptical. But even if the North’s assertion that it has rounded a crucial corner in nuclear development is more rhetoric than real, the content of its claim holds some important clues about where the country’s atomic efforts may be heading.
In a meeting in Seoul on Saturday, South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se said that Friday’s test showed that North Korea’s nuclear capacity has reached a “considerable level” after quickly progressing in the past 10 years.
The newest test by North Korea raises many big questions, including:
At least 45 killed in Syria after US-Russia agreement
BEIRUT (AP) — A day of intense airstrikes Saturday on and around the northern city of Aleppo killed at least 45 people, according to opposition activists.
The Aleppo Media Center, an activist collective, said 45 people were killed Saturday, just hours after the new U.S.-Russian agreement was reached to try and end the violence in Syria. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said 30 people were killed in Aleppo province and another 39 were killed by airstrikes in neighboring Idlib province.
Contrasting casualty figures are common in the aftermath of large attacks in Syria.
The United States and Russia announced a deal Saturday that would establish a nationwide cease-fire starting on Monday, followed a week later by an new military partnership targeting Islamic State and al-Qaida militants as well as the establishment of new limits on the forces of Syrian President Bashar Assad forces.
Previous Syrian cease-fires or limited truces have also been preceded by spikes in violence as both government and rebel forces seek to consolidate positions or gain new ground in the final remaining hours of warfare.
Analysis: Syria deal offers hope, but Russia calling shots
WASHINGTON (AP) — Saturday’s deal to renew a nationwide truce in Syria, open aid routes and establish a U.S.-Russian military partnership may be the best hope yet to end the brutal five-year civil war. It is also full of potential pitfalls and leaves Moscow with far more power than Washington to determine if there can be lasting peace.
Careful to note the possibility for failure, Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov were nevertheless upbeat as they announced the agreement after a marathon negotiating session in Geneva that culminated dozens of one-on-one conversations over the past several months. Spurred on by the violence that has enveloped the Syrian city of Aleppo — intense airstrikes were reported there Saturday — the two diplomats forged a pact they say departs from previous unsuccessful attempts to halt the bloodshed.
Yet the new blueprint appears to suffer from a fundamental imbalance common to the earlier efforts.
If U.S.-backed or other rebels fighting Syrian President Bashar Assad break the cease-fire, Russia could threaten to respond militarily or allow his forces to retaliate.
But if Assad breaks the cease-fire, the U.S. has no clear enforcement stick.
John Hinckley Jr. leaves DC mental hospital for Virginia
WASHINGTON (AP) — The man who tried to assassinate President Ronald Reagan has been released from a Washington mental hospital for good, more than 35 years after the shooting.
A spokeswoman for the District of Columbia’s Department of Mental Health said early Saturday that all patients scheduled to leave St. Elizabeths Hospital had been discharged. John Hinckley Jr. was among those scheduled for discharge.
An Associated Press reporter saw a hired car pull into the driveway of the Hinckley home about 2:30 p.m. Officers from the Kingsmill Police Department chased reporters away.
A federal judge ruled in late July that the 61-year-old Hinckley is not a danger to himself or the public and can live full-time at his mother’s home in Williamsburg.
Hinckley had already been visiting Williamsburg for long stretches at a time and preparing for the full-time transition. He’ll have to follow a lot of rules while in Williamsburg, but his longtime lawyer Barry Levine says he thinks Hinckley will be a “citizen about whom we can all be proud.”
Brock Turner sex assault focuses attention on sex registries
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — When ex-Stanford University swimmer Brock Turner became a registered sex offender for life last Tuesday, he joined a nationwide list of registered sex criminals that has grown dramatically in recent years to more than 800,000.
Even some who have denounced Turner’s six-month jail sentence as too lenient for sexually assaulting an unconscious woman question whether he should spend his life with the stigma and onerous restrictions of a registered sex offender.
They join a growing number of defense attorneys, advocates and judges who are questioning the fairness of applying lifetime, blanket restrictions to expanding definitions of sex crimes that frequently treat first-time offenders the same as serial rapists.
In California, Florida, South Carolina and Alabama it’s impossible for people convicted of any sex crime to be removed from the online registries showing their pictures, addresses, convictions and probation details. Offenders have been turned into victims themselves when they are targeted in vigilante attacks or can’t find jobs or places to live, critics say.
Stanford University law professor Michele Dauber, who lambasted Turner’s sentence as too lenient and is leading a campaign to oust the judge who imposed, said requiring the 21-year-old man to be registered as a sex offender until he dies may be too harsh.
Kashmiri police face public wrath amid anti-India uprising
SRINAGAR, India (AP) — Before the crack of dawn and before the protesters hit the streets to resume demands India leave Kashmir, he dressed like an ordinary man and made sure not to carry anything identifying him as police.
He joined six passengers in a shared taxi outside his village in a lush pine forest near the militarized boundary that divides the Himalayan region between India and Pakistan. A young woman asked if he was a policeman, warning that it could mean trouble for all of them if he was found out by the anti-India protesters who regularly check IDs at highway roadblocks.
“I couldn’t lie,” the officer said. He managed to convince them he could pass undetected. “But deep down I was shattered, and scared, given how hard it is to hide one’s identity in this place.”
As Kashmir enters a third month of tense conflict marked by violent street clashes and almost daily protests, Indian government troops backed by local police are maintaining a tight security lockdown throughout the region.
That’s left the local Kashmiri police, tasked with patrolling the streets, gathering intelligence and profiling anti-India activists, feeling demoralized, afraid and caught in the middle between the Indian authorities who employ them and the friends and neighbors who question their loyalties.
After 15 years, last artifacts of 9/11 have been given away
NEW YORK (AP) — Behind the barbed wire, the white minivan’s busted windows and crumpled roof hint at its story. But forklifted to this windblown spot on the John F. Kennedy International Airport tarmac, between a decommissioned 727 and an aircraft hangar, it’s doubtful passing drivers notice it at all.
In the long struggle with the searing memories of 9/11, though, the van’s solitary presence here marks a small but significant transition point.
Tons of wreckage — twisted steel beams weighing up to 40,000 pounds, chunks of concrete smelling of smoke, a crushed fire engine, a dust-covered airline slipper — were salvaged from the World Trade Center site for preservation in the weeks after the 2001 terrorist attacks. Now, 15 years later, this van, part of a government agency motor pool likely sheltered from the impact in the parking garage beneath the complex, is the very last artifact without a resting place.
When the van is claimed, as soon as a few weeks from now, it will fulfill a pledge that, to move beyond 9/11 without losing sight of it, New York would share relics of that terror, along with the tales of sacrifice and fear that come with them.
The decision by officials to give away pieces of Trade Center wreckage has been praised and criticized over the years. But its impact is undeniable.
Woman in iconic V-J Day Times Square kiss photo dies at 92
NEW YORK (AP) — The woman in an iconic photo shown kissing an ecstatic sailor in Times Square celebrating the end of World War II has died. Greta Zimmer Friedman was 92.
Friedman, who fled Austria during the war as a 15-year-old, died Thursday at a hospital in Richmond, Virginia, from complications of old age, her son, Joshua Friedman, said.
Greta Friedman was a 21-year-old dental assistant in a nurse’s uniform when she became part of one of the most famous photographs of the 20th century.
On Aug. 14, 1945, known as V-J Day, the day Japan surrendered to the United States, people spilled into the New York City streets from restaurants, bars and movie theaters, celebrating the news.
That’s when George Mendonsa spotted Friedman, spun her around and planted a kiss. The two had never met. In fact, Mendonsa was on a date with an actual nurse, Rita Petry, who would later become his wife.