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Published: Monday, January 23, 2017 @ 10:44 AM
Updated: Monday, January 23, 2017 @ 11:54 AM
Frank Luna contributed to this report.
During a interview Sunday with Kellyanne Conway, NBC's Chuck Todd asked the counselor to the president why the new White House press secretary, Sean Spicer, "(uttered) a provable falsehood" when talking about the size of the crowd that attended the inauguration of President Donald Trump on Friday.
During his first official press conference, Spicer scolded the media for its reporting on the size of the crowd at Friday's inauguration.
"This was the largest audience to ever witness an inauguration, period," Spicer said, contradicting all available data.
Barack Obama's first inauguration on Jan. 20, 2009, attracted the largest crowd of people on record, with an estimated 1.8 million attendees.
Official estimates of attendees at the inauguration of Donald Trump have not been recorded, but preliminary estimates said 700,000 to 900,000 people were expected to attend the event on Friday.
Conway, on NBC's "Meet the Press," defended Spicer by suggesting he was putting forth "alternate facts" in reference to the crowd size.
"Why (did) the president ask the White House press secretary to come out in front of the podium for the first time and utter a falsehood?" Todd asked. "It undermines the credibility of the entire White House press office on day one."
"No it doesn't. Don't be so overly dramatic about it," Conway said. "You're saying it's a falsehood … and Sean Spicer, our press secretary, gave alternative facts."
"Wait a minute, alternative facts?" Todd said. "Four of the five facts he uttered were just not true. Alternative facts are not facts. They are falsehoods."
Merriam-Webster, known for publishing dictionaries, took to Twitter Sunday after the interview to clarify the definition of "fact."
"A fact is a piece of information presented as having objective reality," the tweet said.
The tweet was liked more than 40,000 times.
A fact is a piece of information presented as having objective reality.https://t.co/gCKRZZm23c— Merriam-Webster (@MerriamWebster) January 22, 2017
Merriam-Webster said that "lookups for 'fact' spiked after Kellyanne Conway described false statements as 'alternative facts.'"
"In contemporary use, fact is generally understood to refer to something with actual existence, or presented as having objective reality," the listed definition explained.
Published: Saturday, January 20, 2018 @ 8:35 PM
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — A 9-year-old girl unwittingly ate, and handed out to other classmates, THC-laced candy, school officials said.
The girl brought the candies to school last Thursday and said she could not see; another girl ate them and started to feel dizzy, Albuquerque School of Excellence Dean of Elementary School Students Kristy Del Curto told KRQE.
“We noticed the student who initially brought the edible to our school was acting strange. She started saying she couldn’t see,” Del Curto said.
Three students shared one gummy and the student who handed it out had three or four pieces, Del Curto said.
Paramedics were called and monitored the students, who eventually recovered.
The student who brought them to school did not know they were medicinal, THC-laced gummies, Del Curto said.
Published: Sunday, January 21, 2018 @ 8:42 AM
Updated: Sunday, January 21, 2018 @ 10:03 AM
BOSTON — UPDATE, 10:03 a.m. 1/21/2018: Despite the shutdown of the United States government early Saturday, the NFL announced Sunday morning that the Armed Forces Network will air the AFC and NFC Championship games.
The NFL also said it is providing free access to the games via NFL Game Pass to all USO centers.
Meanwhile, Congress is back at work Sunday, attempting to create a deal to end the shutdown.
Great news as Armed Forces Network will air both Championship Sunday NFL games today for our service members around the world— Brian McCarthy (@NFLprguy) January 21, 2018
ORIGINAL STORY: As a result of lawmakers failing to resolve a standoff over immigration and spending, the United States government has been shut down indefinitely – meaning everyone has been affected, including troops overseas.
There is a lot of fallout from the shutdown. From government employees who aren't being paid, including the Defense Department, to the Armed Forces Network being taken off the air, the effects of a standstill government can be felt across the board.
Since the AFN has been taken off the air, that means many of our troops overseas won't be able to watch the NFL playoffs Sunday.
Surely it's not the biggest issue surrounding a government shutdown, but it's a big morale issue.
Watching the Patriots on the Armed Forces Network has been a comforting piece of home for army Sgt. Matt Connolly, who's serving in South Korea.
"It's kind of the only thing we can do for fun over here," Connolly told WFXT.
For the first time since he's been stationed in Korea, his family came to visit him for the AFC Championship game.
"I'm actually on leave right now. My family from Boston is here right now and we were looking forward to watching the game," Connolly said.
With no one to run it, AFN is off the air.
The NFL says it is providing free access to Sunday's Championships via the NFL Game Pass to all USO centers.
"No matter what, I'm going to watch them," Connolly said.
Sen. Ed Markey says he's in a holding pattern right now as he says he and most of his colleagues are preparing to negotiate through the night – but it's still unclear if that will be an option.
Immigration issues are at the center of the shutdown. Many Republicans don't want to negotiate on those issues until a spending bill is passed and the government re-opens.
However, those immigration issues – including the DREAMERS Act – are a priority for many Democrats.
Markey told WFXT that he believes everyone needs to continue working to find some sort of compromise, and he wants President Donald Trump to take the lead.
"Bill Belichick is telling the New England Patriots for tomorrow, 'Do your job,' and we are saying to President Trump for tomorrow, 'Do your job, Mr. President. Make sure that the funding is there for our troops. Make sure that our defense is taken care of, but make sure that we also protect child health and the Dreamers,' but thus far he's been unwilling to do his job," Markey said.
Published: Saturday, January 20, 2018 @ 7:17 PM
— Jim Rodford, bassist for popular rock band The Kinks from 1978 to 1996, has died at 76, according to the band.
The Kinks, whose hits include “You Really Got Me,” “Lola,” “I’m Not Like Everybody Else,” “A Well-Respected Man,” “Victoria” and “Waterloo Sunset,” made the announcement Saturday on its official social media accounts.
“It is with deep sadness that we have learned that Jim Rodford passed away – he toured and recorded with the Kinks for many years and will be greatly missed. He was much loved by all of us #JimRodford,” the band said on Twitter.
It is with deep sadness that we have learned that Jim Rodford passed away - he toured and recorded with the Kinks for many years and will be greatly missed. He was much loved by all of us #JimRodford https://t.co/LmWFGd9ZRV— TheKinksOfficial (@TheKinks) January 20, 2018
Founding member Dave Davies also expressed his sorrow over Rodford’s “sudden loss.”
“I’m devastated Jim’s sudden loss I’m too broken up to put words together it’s such a shock I always thought Jim would live forever in true rock and roll fashion – strange – great friend great musician great man – he was an integral part of the Kinks later years RIP,” he wrote on Twitter.
I’m devastated Jim’s sudden loss I’m too broken up to put words together it’s such a shock i always thought Jim would live forever in true rock and roll fashion - strange - great friend great musician great man - he was an integral part of theKinks later years RIP #JimRodford pic.twitter.com/rL5vAuuVwp— Dave Davies (@davedavieskinks) January 20, 2018
Although Rodford did not play for the band when they burst onto the scene in the ’60s, he was credited by Davies as being an integral part of “The Kinks” in their later years. Rodford would later return to the band The Zombies.
Published: Saturday, January 20, 2018 @ 6:39 PM
— For the third time in the week since the Brightline train started its service from West Palm Beach to Fort Lauderdale, a person has been hit by the passenger train, according to Fort Lauderdale police.
Detective Tracy Figone, public information officer for the police department, said a pedestrian attempted to cross the train tracks at Northeast Third Avenue and North Flagler Drive when the gates were down. The person’s injuries are not life-threatening, according to Figone.
Four people have been hit and killed by Brightline trains since it started testing service.
Friday night, a Brightline spokesperson reiterated the message from a press conference earlier that day: Safety.
“Today, we joined with partners in South Florida to stress our top priority - safety. Incidents like these can be avoided and train warnings need to be treated exactly like red lights, stop signs and crosswalks,” the spokesperson said.
On Friday, Brightline officials announced newly planned safety and public education initiatives in the wake of two fatal accidents in the last week.
On Wednesday, 51-year-old Jeffrey King was hit and killed by a northbound Brightline train when he pedaled his bicycle around the gates near the Florida East Coast Railway crossing about 4:30 p.m. on Ocean Avenue. Last Friday, 32-year-old Melissa Lavell was hit and killed near the intersection of Northeast Sixth Avenue in Boynton Beach. Witnesses told police she attempted to beat the train when the gates were down.
An 18-year-old who jumped in front of the train while it was making a test run in July was ruled a suicide, officials said. The November death of a woman on the tracks was ruled an accident.
During the press conference, Brightline’s President and Chief Operating Officer Patrick Goddard said they plan to implement electronic signs as well as put employees at busy intersections as extra warnings of passing trains.
“We offer our deepest sympathy to those affected by the recent incidents,” Goddard said at a news conference to announce the new safety measures. “The fact that these incidents are completely avoidable is what makes them so tragic.”