What to Know
- Aides to Joe Biden struck a more aggressive tone as the former vice president faced scrutiny over his past behavior toward women
- Measles continues to spread with outbreaks in four states infecting more people in the first three months of 2019 than all of last year
- A man has been identified as the suspected shooter in the killing of rapper Nipsey Hussle, whose legal name is Ermias Asghedom, police say
Get the top headlines of the day in your morning briefing from NBC 4 New York, Monday through Friday. Sign up for our newsletter here.
Joe Biden Team Blasts 'Trolls' Amid Scrutiny Over Behavior
Aides to Joe Biden struck a more aggressive tone as the former vice president faced scrutiny over his past behavior toward women. In a statement, Biden spokesman Bill Russo blasted "right wing trolls" from "the dark recesses of the internet" for conflating images of Biden embracing acquaintances, colleagues and friends in his official capacity during swearing-in ceremonies with uninvited touching. The move came on a day in which a second woman said Biden had acted inappropriately, touching her face with both hands and rubbing noses with her in 2009. The allegation by Amy Lappos, a former aide to Democratic Rep. Jim Himes of Connecticut, followed a magazine essay by former Nevada politician Lucy Flores, who wrote that Biden kissed her on the back of the head in 2014. The developments underscored the challenge facing Biden should he decide to seek the White House. Following historic wins in the 2018 midterms, Democratic politics is dominated by energy from women. The allegations could leave the 76-year-old Biden, long known for his affectionate mannerisms, appearing out of touch with the party as the Democratic presidential primary begins.
Trump's Threat to Close Border Stirs Fears of Economic Harm
President Trump's threat to shut down the southern border raised fears of dire economic consequences in the U.S. and an upheaval of daily life in a stretch of the country that relies on the international flow of not just goods and services but also students, families and workers. Politicians, business leaders and economists warned such a move would block incoming shipments of fruits and vegetables, TVs, medical devices and other products and cut off people who commute to their jobs or school or come across to go shopping. Trump brought up the possibility of closing ports of entry along the southern border Friday and revisited it in tweets over the weekend because of a surge of Central Americans migrants who are seeking asylum. Trump administration officials have said the influx is straining the immigration system to the breaking point. Elected leaders from border communities stretching from San Diego to cities across Texas warned that havoc would ensue on both sides of the international boundary if the ports were closed. They were joined by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which said such a step would inflict "severe economic harm."
Disaster Aid Stalls in Senate Amid Fight Over Puerto Rico
Senate Democrats blocked a Republican disaster aid bill, saying it doesn't do enough to help hurricane-torn Puerto Rico. The move tossed long-sought relief for victims of hurricanes, floods and western wildfires into limbo. The vote escalated a fight between Democrats and President Trump, who opposes further rebuilding aid for the U.S. island territory, which was slammed by back-to-back hurricanes in 2017. The 44-49 vote fell short of a majority, much less the 60 votes required to overcome a Democratic filibuster. It sent GOP leaders back to the drawing board but seemed unlikely to kill disaster aid efforts outright, since there is much political support to send aid to Southern farmers, wildfire-ravaged California towns and Midwestern flood victims. Trump allies such as Sens. David Perdue, R-Ga., and Rick Scott, R-Fla., are among the strongest backers of the legislation, which has already faced significant delays.
US Measles Cases Surpass Last Year’s Total in Just 3 Months
Measles continues to spread across the U.S. with outbreaks in four states infecting more people in the first three months of 2019 than all of last year, according to new data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC has confirmed 387 cases across 15 states from Jan. 1 through March 28, compared with 372 cases all last year. The health agency updates the statistics weekly. There are now six outbreaks, defined as three or more cases, across four states: New York, Washington, New Jersey and California, according to the CDC. This year is shaping up to be the worst year for measles since at least 2014 and is already the second-worst since the virus was declared eradicated from the U.S. in 2000. Measles has been making a comeback as parents increasingly refuse to vaccinate their children and unvaccinated travelers bring back the disease from other countries. In 2014, there were 667 confirmed cases, according to the CDC.
Police Identify Suspect in Nipsey Hussle Killing
A man has been identified as the suspected shooter in the killing of rapper Nipsey Hussle, whose legal name is Ermias Asghedom, the Los Angeles Police Department said. Eric Holder, 29, is wanted for homicide in the shooting of the rapper, along with shooting two other people, the LAPD said. Holder was last seen in a 2016 white 4-door Chevy Cruze with California license plate 7RJD742, police said. The shooting took place at around 3:20 p.m. in the 3400 block of West Slauson Avenue, police said. The suspect fled from the scene into an adjacent alley where a vehicle was waiting, the LAPD said. Detectives are asking for the public's help to find the suspect. Anyone with information related to his whereabouts or this deadly shooting is urged to contact South Bureau Homicide at 323-786-5100. Anyone wishing to remain anonymous can call the LA Regional Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS. Police made the announcement after dispersing a crowd that had gathered for a vigil of the slain rapper earlier in the evening.
Magician David Blaine Under Investigation by NYPD Sex Crimes
Magician David Blaine is under investigation in New York over sexual assault allegations, the NYPD confirmed. NYPD Chief of Detectives Dermot Shea confirmed during an unrelated press conference that “there is an active investigation” by the Special Victims Unit into the accusations against Blaine. According to a published report by The Daily Beast, detectives have taken statements from two women, although one of the claims may fall outside the statute of limitations. One of the women told investigators that Blaine, 45, sexually assaulted her inside his Manhattan apartment in 1998, The Daily Beast reports. Blaine has not been charged with a crime. He told The Daily Beast he has not been approached by police, who would not comment on whether detectives are seeking to interview him.