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5 things to know for December 16: Impeachment, Afghanistan, Lebanon, COP25, North Korea

In an exclusive interview with the New York Post, Harvey Weinstein refused to discuss allegations against him and instead talked about his career, according to the newspaper.

Posted: Dec 16, 2019 9:10 AM
Updated: Dec 16, 2019 9:10 AM

Did you have a somewhat temperate weekend? Enjoy it while it lasts. Most of the country will be hit with snow and freezing rain sometime this week.

Here's what else you need to know to Get Up to Speed and Out the Door. (You can also get "5 Things You Need to Know Today" delivered to your inbox daily. Sign up here.)

1. Impeachment

Are you ready for another contentious week of impeachment activity? This is the week the House is supposed to conduct a full vote of the articles of impeachment. The House Judiciary Committee released a 658-page report explaining its decision to charge Trump with two articles of impeachment -- abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. It will only take a simple majority vote to formally impeach President Trump, and then it's on to a Senate trial. When the trial starts, you'll be introduced to a whole new impeachment vocabulary. First up: Impeachment manager. Those will be the head Democrats chosen by Speaker Nancy Pelosi to lead the prosecution of the President. Who will she choose? One option is independent Justin Amash, a congressional Republican who switched parties after backing impeachment proceedings. However, fellow lawmakers say it's "highly unlikely" Pelosi would make a flashy partisan gamble on such an important decision.

2. Afghanistan

The Trump Administration is preparing to announce a long-awaited reduction of US troops in Afghanistan, a senior administration official confirmed to CNN. There are between 12,000 and 13,000 US troops in the country right now, and the US has maintained a solid presence throughout the 18-year war in the area. This drawdown would remove up to 4,000 troops, with more possible reductions in the future, the official said. That matches the claim Trump made on Fox News Radio in August that his administration would take the number "down to 8,600." The reduction comes at the same time the US is restarting peace talks with the Taliban, and some worry the troop drawdown could be seen as a concession to the terrorist group.

3. Lebanon

Protests in Lebanon took a violent turn this weekend. On Saturday night, at least 46 people were injured in clashes between protesters and security forces in the capital of Beirut. The protests have been going on since October and center around accusations of corruption and mismanagement against Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri. If your memory is particularly sharp, you'll recall Hariri actually stepped down in late October, a few weeks after the protests began. He's back again, and is expected to be named head of the next government during parliamentary consultations today. Some other Lebanese leaders have said they won't join any government led by Hariri, which adds another layer of conflict on top of an already incendiary situation.

4. COP25

The marathon COP25 summit in Madrid concluded two days late and with little to show for it all. The climate summit was supposed to end with global leaders hammering out important new emissions regulations and other environmental guidelines to stave off the effects of climate change. Instead, 12 days turned into 14 and the resulting agreement was largely inconclusive, with vague language that deferred big decisions until next year's summit. For instance, the agreement concludes there's an urgent need for new carbon-cutting commitments, but doesn't really outline how to secure those commitments or what that system would look like. Some leaders put the blame on "large emitters" who were either missing in action at the summit or reportedly dug in their heels at the negotiation table.

5. North Korea 

Remember when North Korea threatened the US with a possibly-nuclear "Christmas gift?" US officials are urging the country to restart denuclearization talks, sending US special representative to North Korea, Stephen Biegun. Those talks fell apart last February after President Trump cut short a summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. North Korea has given the US until the end of the year to make a move in the nuclear negotiations, which means the country wants some sort of concession, like sanctions relief. What happens after that is anyone's guess, but it could include restarting long-range missile tests and completely severing the on-again, off-again diplomatic bromance between Trump and Kim.

BREAKFAST BROWSE

Thousands of bizarre-looking 'penis fish' washed up on a California beach 

For all those middle school boys asked to bring a news story to class, this is what is known as jackpot.

These were the top trendy food stories for 2019 

They were either meatless or fried, slapped on a bun and fought over for hours at the drive-thru.

LSU's Joe Burrow won the Heisman Trophy this weekend

You know what would go nicely with that? A College Football Playoff Trophy.

Thousands of Santas flooded the streets of NYC for 'SantaCon'

One Santa: Jolly! Thousands of Santas: Utterly terrifying.

TODAY'S QUOTE

"Harvey Weinstein is trying to gaslight society again. He says in a new interview he doesn't want to be forgotten. Well, he won't be. He will be remembered as a sexual predator and an unrepentant abuser who took everything and deserves nothing."

An excerpt from a statement signed by 23 women who have accused Harvey Weinstein of sexual misconduct. The disgraced movie producer recently told the New York Post his "work has been forgotten" in light of the widespread accusations of harassment, misconduct and rape. Weinstein has repeatedly denied all allegations of nonconsensual sex.

TODAY'S NUMBER

$1 billion

Disney's "Frozen 2" crossed this magical threshold at the international box office this weekend, making it the sixth billion-dollar Disney film THIS YEAR ALONE. No other studio has had so many films cross the billion dollar mark in a year.

TODAY'S WEATHER

AND FINALLY

She's beauty and she's grace

Chill out to one of the most famous -- and festive -- ballet solos ever, and try to remember if you have ever actually eaten a sugar plum. (Click here to view)

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 46387

Reported Deaths: 2662
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion11434680
Lake4985241
Elkhart313343
Allen2695117
St. Joseph185766
Cass16369
Hamilton1502100
Hendricks1371100
Johnson1244118
Porter69037
Tippecanoe6598
Madison64363
Clark62744
Bartholomew58044
Howard55057
LaPorte54125
Kosciusko5003
LaGrange4646
Jackson4583
Vanderburgh4576
Noble45128
Delaware42949
Boone42743
Hancock42535
Marshall4183
Shelby41825
Floyd37044
Morgan32331
Montgomery29020
Grant28726
Clinton2812
Monroe26328
Dubois2616
White25910
Decatur24732
Henry23615
Lawrence23624
Vigo2278
Harrison20822
Warrick20729
Dearborn20622
Greene18432
Miami1802
Jennings16911
Putnam1658
DeKalb1594
Scott1557
Daviess13916
Orange13323
Wayne1296
Franklin1248
Steuben1242
Perry1239
Ripley1148
Jasper1132
Carroll1092
Wabash1092
Fayette967
Newton9610
Whitley814
Randolph774
Starke773
Huntington702
Wells681
Jay670
Fulton661
Jefferson661
Washington651
Knox630
Pulaski621
Clay594
Rush563
Benton480
Adams471
Gibson462
Owen451
Sullivan441
Brown381
Blackford372
Posey360
Spencer331
Tipton301
Crawford290
Fountain292
Switzerland260
Martin220
Parke220
Ohio140
Warren141
Union130
Vermillion130
Pike80
Unassigned0193

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 52865

Reported Deaths: 2876
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Franklin9338407
Cuyahoga7013366
Hamilton5224198
Marion273138
Lucas2628302
Pickaway217641
Summit1969206
Montgomery178426
Mahoning1752228
Butler144844
Columbiana120960
Stark1052112
Lorain96267
Trumbull86362
Warren75721
Clark7399
Belmont53421
Delaware51815
Tuscarawas51510
Fairfield50316
Medina49132
Lake44316
Miami44231
Ashtabula42144
Portage41858
Licking41611
Geauga39042
Wood38451
Clermont3566
Wayne35452
Richland3185
Allen29740
Mercer2728
Darke23625
Erie22922
Greene2229
Holmes2043
Madison1888
Huron1772
Crawford1357
Ottawa13023
Washington12720
Sandusky12213
Morrow1151
Putnam11516
Hardin11312
Ross1092
Auglaize993
Monroe8617
Coshocton811
Jefferson802
Union801
Hancock761
Hocking767
Muskingum731
Preble661
Lawrence650
Williams652
Clinton620
Guernsey603
Shelby594
Logan581
Wyandot584
Fulton570
Ashland551
Brown531
Carroll513
Defiance483
Fayette460
Highland431
Knox391
Champaign381
Athens371
Scioto360
Seneca332
Perry301
Henry290
Van Wert270
Paulding230
Vinton222
Adams211
Pike200
Jackson170
Gallia141
Harrison121
Meigs110
Noble110
Morgan90
Unassigned00
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