WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. Senate has acquitted President Donald Trump of impeachment, ending only the third presidential trial in American history with votes that split the country and tested civic norms. The proceedings also are feeding the tumultuous 2020 run for the White House. A majority of senators expressed unease with Trump’s pressure campaign on Ukraine that resulted in the two articles of impeachment. But there was nowhere near the two-thirds vote necessary in the Republican-held Senate to remove the president from office. He was found not guilty of both articles of impeachment. Trump is eager to use the tally as vindication, a political anthem in his reelection bid.
US stocks extend rally; S&P 500, Nasdaq at all-time highs
Health care and financial companies led a broad rally on Wall Street Wednesday, giving the market its third straight gain. The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq closed at all-time highs. The latest gains came as another batch of solid corporate earnings reports and more encouraging economic data overshadowed concerns about economic fallout from the virus outbreak that originated in China. Bond prices fell, pushing yields higher. Crude oil prices jumped. The S&P 500 rose 37 points, or 1.1%, to 3,334. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 483 points, or 1.7%, to 29,290 and the Nasdaq climbed 40 points, or 0.4%, to 9,508.
Buttigieg clings to narrow lead as Iowa results trickle in
NEW YORK (AP) — Pete Buttigieg is clinging to a slight lead over Bernie Sanders in a new batch of votes released by the Iowa Democratic Party. The race remained too early to call with 75% of precincts reporting by Wednesday afternoon, almost two full days after the state hosted its first-in-the-nation presidential caucuses. Much of the political world has already shifted its attention to New Hampshire, which votes on Tuesday. Wednesday’s updated results show Elizabeth Warren, Joe Biden and Amy Klobuchar trailing. Iowa officials attributed their delay to technical problems. The chaos surrounding the reporting breakdown has undermined the impact of Iowa’s election, which typically rewards winners with a surge of momentum.
FBI director warns of ongoing Russian ‘information warfare’
WASHINGTON (AP) — FBI Director Chris Wray says Russia is engaged in “information warfare” heading into the 2020 presidential election. But he says law enforcement hasn’t seen ongoing efforts by Russia to interfere in America’s election infrastructure. Wray tells the House Judiciary Committee that Russia is relying on a covert social media campaign aimed at dividing American public opinion and sowing discord. That effort may have an uptick in an election year but it’s otherwise a round-the-clock threat that is in some ways harder to combat than an election system hack. The FBI and Department of Homeland Security Department are on alert for possible election-related cyberactivity like what occurred in 2016,
Airliner skids, breaks open in Istanbul; 1 dead, 157 injured
ISTANBUL (AP) — A Turkish airliner skidded off a runway and broke apart as it tried to land in bad weather in Istanbul, leaving one person dead and more than 150 others injured. Passengers had to scramble through cracks in the plane’s fuselage to escape. The aircraft operated by low-cost carrier Pegasus Airlines plane was arriving from the western Turkish city of Izmir with 177 passengers and crew on board Wednesday when it had what the Transportation Ministry described as a “rough landing.” Istanbul Gov. Ali Yerlikaya said the plane failed to “hold onto the runway” and skidded 50 to 60 meters before it crashed into a ditch from a height of about 30 meters.
CHINA OUTBREAK-US EVACUEES
2 jets with Americans escaping virus zone land in California
FAIRFIELD, Calif. (AP) — U.S. military officials say two jets carrying about 350 Americans fleeing the virus zone in China have landed at an Air Force base in Northern California. Some will be quarantined for 14 days there while others will fly on to Marine Corps Air Station Miramar near San Diego to be quarantined. An Air Force spokeswoman says the passengers fleeing the Chinese city of Wuhan who will stay at Travis Air Force Base will be housed in a base hotel. Hotel guests and staff were moved out. Federal officials say more planes with American evacuees from China will arrive this week at military bases in Nebraska and Texas.
Snowfall blankets Texas, Oklahoma; Deep South to see storms
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — A winter storm is bringing snowfall as far south as El Paso, Texas, while areas of the Deep South are at risk of severe weather including tornadoes and torrential rains. The National Weather Service says winter storm warnings and advisories are in effect from eastern New Mexico to the St. Louis metropolitan area on Wednesday. Meanwhile, the Storm Prediction Center says severe storms are possible across much of Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama later in the day. In Oklahoma, the heavy snow prompted the closure of the state Legislature, and dozens of traffic wrecks were reported in the Oklahoma City area.
REST STOP SHOOTING
Florida trooper dies in shooting at highway rest stop
PALM CITY, Fla. (AP) — A Florida Highway Patrol trooper is dead after a shooting at a highway rest stop. The agency says Trooper Joseph Bullock died in the shooting Wednesday near Palm City. That’s about about a 45-minute drive north of West Palm Beach. The agency says the suspect then died by suicide.No further information about the suspect’s death was released, including the suspect’s gender. The shooting closed Interstate 95 in both directions in the area. Officials say it will remain closed until at least late Wednesday afternoon.
ARTILLERY SHELL-SOUTH CAROLINA
Streets closed after Civil War shell found in SC city
CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — Authorities say several downtown streets in South Carolina’s largest city have been closed after construction crews found a Civil War artillery shell. The crew in downtown Charleston called 911 around 10 a.m. Wednesday to report the shell. Charleston police say it was found just over a block from the Old Slave Mart where dozens of vendors sell merchandise. The police department called the U.S. Air Force to dispose of the shell and closed several nearby roads as a precaution for about three hours. Investigators say the shell is from the Civil War.
Judge rules against women seeking admission to Yale frats
HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — A federal judge has dismissed nearly all claims in a lawsuit that sought to force all-male fraternities at Yale University to admit women. Judge Victor Bolden in Bridgeport ruled Jan. 30 that both fraternities and sororities are specifically excluded from a federal law that bans gender discrimination in education. Three female students sued Yale and nine fraternities citing alleged sexual assault, harassment and discrimination at fraternities. Their lawyer says they’re disappointed with the ruling and considering their options. The judge allowed one claim to stand, an allegation Yale failed to act on a sexual assault complaint by one of the women.