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Newtown Marks 10 Years Since Sandy Hook Tragedy (Maria)

The author writes, “December is a difficult month for many in Newtown, the Connecticut suburb where holiday season joy is tempered by heartbreak around the yearly remembrance of the nation’s worst grade school shooting. For former Sandy Hook students who survived the massacre, guilt and anxiety can intensify. … In February, Sandy Hook families reached a $73 million settlement with the gunmaker Remington, which made the shooter’s rifle. Juries in Connecticut and Texas ordered the conspiracy theorist Alex Jones to pay $1.4 billion for promoting lies that the massacre was a hoax.” 

North Carolina AG to Weigh Charges in Meadows Voter Fraud Case (DonkeyHotey)

From AP: “The North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation said it has submitted to state prosecutors the findings of its voter fraud probe into Mark Meadows, a former White House chief of staff to President Donald Trump, who was simultaneously registered to vote in North Carolina and two other states earlier this year. The State Bureau of Investigation announced Tuesday that it has turned over the case file detailing its investigation into Meadows’ North Carolina voter registration and listed residence to Attorney General Josh Stein’s office. Prosecutors with the attorney general’s office will determine whether criminal charges are appropriate, the bureau said in a statement.”

How Right-Wing Candidates of Color Delivered the House to Republicans (Gerry)

From The New Republic: “In the days following the 2022 midterm elections, conventional wisdom had it that the much-predicted ‘red wave’ never materialized because too many GOP candidates ran too far to the right on too many issues—abortion, gun control, election denialism, and connections to Donald Trump and January 6.  As Democratic Representative Elissa Slotkin explained, ‘The message on [Election Day] was the average person is done voting for extremism.’ This consensus holds for the most closely watched races, where Republicans did appear to have this kind of ‘candidate problem.’ But beneath the surface, there was an undercurrent that went badly underappreciated — one that may churn the electoral waters for years to come. In the House, where the new Republican majority was secured by wresting a handful of seats from Democratic control, one group of conservative candidates won decisively without moderating their politics.”

Outgoing Pennsylvania Sen. Toomey Blocks Landmark Legislation to Fight Global Money Laundering (Reader Steve)

The author writes, “With just weeks left in his final term, US Sen. Pat Toomey played a key role in blocking sweeping anti-money laundering legislation that was created to choke off the billions of dirty dollars pouring into the United States from shady operators, including drug traffickers, oligarchs and corrupt foreign leaders. The outgoing Pennsylvania Republican pushed last week to halt the reforms from being included in the nation’s annual defense spending bill in a blow to advocates who had gained bipartisan support to wage the most comprehensive crackdown on money laundering in a generation.”

‘Democracy Dies in Darkness, Huh?’: Washington Post Publisher Stuns Newsroom With Layoff Bombshell — And Hasty Exit (Sean)

From Vanity Fair: “The Washington Post Guild went into Wednesday’s town hall with a plan. Anticipating that publisher Fred Ryan wasn’t going to take live questions … they’d crowd-sourced a list of questions in advance and got more than 70 staffers to send a version of these questions to HR, according to a member of the Guild. The Guild had 10 designated questioners who would pop up during the Q&A portion of Wednesday’s town hall. But when that time came, after an hour-plus meeting of presentations for various initiatives, like the Post’s climate coverage and David Shipley’s plans for the Editorial page, things went awry. Ryan launched into a scripted speech in which he dropped the news that there would be additional layoffs coming — a ‘number of positions’ would be eliminated in the first quarter of 2023, he said, without specifying what parts of the company would be impacted.”

New Study Identifies Connection Between Diabetes Medications, Multiple Sclerosis (Mili)

The author writes, “A new University of Arizona Health Sciences study found that people older than 45 whose Type 2 diabetes was treated with anti-hyperglycemic medications had an increased risk of multiple sclerosis, particularly among women, while anti-hyperglycemic exposure in people younger than 45 reduced that risk.”

NASA’s Perseverance Rover Captured the Sound of a Dust Devil on Mars (Kiana)

The author writes, “Thanks to a bit of good luck, the Mars rover Perseverance has captured the first-ever sound of a Martian dust devil. The NASA rover has witnessed dusty whirlwinds before. But when this one swept right over Perseverance, the rover’s microphone happened to be turned on. So the first-of-its-kind data include the sounds of dust grains either pinging off the microphone or being transmitted to the mic through the rover’s structure, researchers report December 13 in Nature Communications. Because the rover’s microphone is turned on only occasionally, the team estimates that such events, when they occur, might be recorded just around 0.5 percent of the time.”

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