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5 things to know for March 4: Tornadoes, politics, Good Samaritan, Asia, Michael Jackson

(CNN)It's a grim morning in Alabama after a deadly outbreak of tornadoes last night. House Democrats start ramping up their investigations of President Trump today. The vote in the Senate will come sometime in the next two weeks. If it passes, the resolution would go to the President for his signature, but Trump has already said he'd veto it. President Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping could be meeting up later this month to end the trade war between the two countries. Meanwhile the US and South Korea canceled major war games, which North Korea has long considered a provocation. It was a shocking, outrageous story: A woman stabbed to death at an intersection while trying to help a panhandler. Now the story gets even more shocking: Baltimore police say the woman's husband and stepdaughter are the actual suspects. Part one of the new HBO documentary on Michael Jackson, "Leaving Neverland," aired last night. Part two deals with Jackson's 2005 trial on child molestation charges and Robson and Safechuck's decision to now come forward with their accusations.

Timeline of turmoil: How Virginia’s ongoing political scandals developed

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - It’s been a tumultuous few weeks for Virginia with the commonwealth’s top three officials embroiled each embroiled in separate scandals. Here is a minute-by-minute timeline of the political controversies that have put the commonwealth in the national spotlight. Gov. Ralph Northam defends proposed bill loosening restrictions on abortion in an interview with WTOP and says, “It’s done in cases where there may be severe deformities, there may be a fetus that’s non-viable. So in this particular example, if a mother is in labor, I can tell you exactly what would happen. The infant would be delivered. The infant would be kept comfortable. Virginia first lady Pamela Northam tells him it is “inappropriate circumstances.” 4:54 p.m. – Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring says Northam should resign and he will support Fairfax as the new governor. African-American leaders shocked by Herring blackface admission 11:38 a.m. – Fairfax releases statement saying it is important to listen to women who bring forward allegations of sexual assault, but reiterates his denial that he did not sexual assault anyone. ~ 2 p.m. – A law firm representing Tyson releases a statement in which she graphically describes the alleged encounter between her and Fairfax in 2004.

Who is Justin Fairfax? The descendant of slaves is next in line for Virginia...

WASHINGTON — As Virginia Democratic Gov. Justin Fairfax remains in the wings as the man who would replace him if Northam were to step down. While Northam apologized and asked for forgiveness on Saturday, he also noted that he maintained a good relationship with Fairfax, who would be America's fifth-ever black governor were he to take Northam's place. "Justin and I have a very, very close relationship," Northam said at the press conference Saturday. On Saturday, Fairfax released a statement saying he was "shocked and saddened" by the images that appeared in Northam's yearbook. "He also reached out to me personally to express his sincere regrets and to apologize." Fairfax said despite Northam's career of service to American children, soldiers and constituents, he could not condone the governor's actions from his past. Still, Northam’s admission that he darkened his face with shoe polish for a costume in the past is not the only reminder that that process is incomplete. I will be stepping off the dais today in protest of the Virginia Senate honoring Robert E. Lee. Virginia only allows elected governors to serve a single, four-year term.

Virginia’s current turmoil is state’s chance to reconcile with its racist past

“For me the scariest part is – and this has been said in the black community for decades – what happened this past week was that things we know exist came to the surface,” said Francesca Leigh-Davis, who co-hosts the RVA Dirt local politics radio show in Richmond, the Virginia state capital. To the outsider, Virginia has been moving left politically over the past decade, to the extent that some have mused whether the state, which brushes up against Washington, DC, in the north-east, should even still be considered part of ‘The South’, in the parlance of the US civil war. Simply because when you drive down the street in Richmond, there are confederate memorials. Monument Avenue, which runs from west Richmond towards the State Capitol, is a veritable rogues gallery of confederate figures. On Thursday there were again protests at Virginia’s capitol, although this time not over the blackface scandal. She thought Northam should resign because of the abortion bill, but was also turned off by the blackface controversy. The drive west from Richmond, through a barren landscape , leads to the town of Appomattox where the court house is one of the most important sites in US history. It’s not funny.” The political crisis in Virginia is a test for the Democratic party | Douglas Williams Read more Myers, 50, is only seven years younger than Herring, yet said he had never seen any of his contemporaries don shoe polish, dark makeup, or any other form of blackface. He was also troubled by the allegations against Fairfax. If any good ultimately comes from the sorry scandal in the corridors of state power, then one message at Heyer’s memorial might seem particularly relevant: “We all can create a better world,” it says.

Ralph Northam Is Just A Small Piece Of The Shift In Race Politics In...

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, presidential candidates and, perhaps most important, both of Virginia's senators and its longest-serving black representative all said Northam should step aside. The entire episode shines a light not just on Northam's troubles but also on the politics of race in the Trump era. A higher standard Rep. Lloyd Doggett, a Democrat from Texas, said on CNN Monday he doesn't think the Democratic Party can stand up to the "bigotry" of President Trump with Northam still in office. "I don't think we can do that," he said, "unless we hold all of our officials to a high standard." Trump, after all, from the day he launched his presidential run in 2015, said Mexico was sending rapists and drug dealers to the United States; exploited white grievance to win the presidency; and as president expounded a kind of moral equivalency between white nationalists and those protesting them after the deadly, racially tinged violence in Charlottesville, Va. Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown of Ohio, who is seriously considering a presidential bid, pulled no punches Sunday in an appearance on NBC's Meet the Press. But Democrats believe Northam needs to go, so they can continue to speak with some moral authority during Trump's presidency. Democrats: "It's a totally different party"; what that could mean for 2020 Democrats have a complicated history on the issue of race. The late Robert Byrd of West Virginia, a former Democratic Senate leader, had once been an official in the KKK. Northam is a reminder for many in the party of where it was, not where it's going. But in the Trump era, times have changed and the scrutiny on issues of race and gender has intensified.

Yearbook truths, political lies

No doubt Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh and Virginia Gov. Kavanaugh’s 1983 yearbook has the words “Devil’s Triangle” and “FFFFFFourth of July” under his photograph. Northam at first admitted he was in the photograph, then said he wasn’t. There was a national belly laugh in response to all of these implausible explanations. The nickname “coonman” hardly seems mysterious, especially for a man who admitted dressing in blackface. And why would a guy put a photograph that didn’t include him on HIS yearbook page? The mid-’80s were a long time ago, but there’s a big difference between DOING something stupid when you’re young, and BEING sexist or racist at any age. There’s also a big difference between having a few bigoted ideas about women and blacks, and having such deep-seeded prejudices that you feel compelled to boast about it in public. It may be unfair to judge people today by what they put in their yearbooks over 30 years ago, but it’s not unfair to ask questions about what was in their mind back then, whether they feel differently today, and why. Forgiveness is possible, but not without truth and accountability.

Virginia Governor Ralph Northam Denies Being in Racist Yearbook Photo and Will Not Step...

Virginia Gov. “I believe now and then that I am not either of the people in this photo,” Northam said. When asked about political leaders who are asking for his resignation, Northam said if he can communicate that he is not the person in the photograph, he can continue to lead. View Sample Sign Up Now “I plan to continue to lead,” he said. “If we get to the point where we feel that we’re not effective, that we’re not efficient, not only for our caucuses but for the commonwealth of Virginia, then we will revisit this and make decisions.” Northam said yesterday was the first time he ever saw the picture and that he never purchased the yearbook. Northam initially apologized for the photo, although he never confirmed which costume he was wearing in the photograph. Northam has faced after multiple calls for him to resign after the yearbook image was wide spread on Friday. On Saturday, Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo, President of the Democratic Governors Association, said Northam could “no longer serve the best interests of Virginians” and said he should resign and allow Lt. Gov. Fairfax to take over. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi called the photo “racist and contrary to fundamental American values” and called for him to “do the right thing.” Write to Gina Martinez at

Virginia governor denies he is in racist yearbook picture – and will not quit

There was little forgiveness in the air in national and state political circles. Most 2020 Democratic contenders demanded Northam’s resignation and before he spoke Susan Swecker, chair of the Democratic party of Virginia, said: “We made the decision to let Governor Northam do the correct thing and resign this morning – we have gotten word he will not do so. We stand with Democrats across Virginia and the country calling him to immediately resign.” The photo was included on Northam’s 1984 yearbook page from Eastern Virginia Medical School and was made public on Friday. The Democratic governor then confirmed he was one of the two people in the photo, but did not identify which individual he was. “It was offensive, racist and despicable.” Northam said he was certain the photo was not of him because he vividly remembered another damning incident, when he participated in a dance contest in Texas where he performed as Michael Jackson and darkened his skin using shoe polish. “I didn’t realize at the time it was so offensive, as I have since learned,” Northam said. Northam said reporters would have to ask the two people who called him that how they arrived at that nickname and that his more common nickname was “Goose”. “In light of his public admission and apology for his decision to appear in the photo, he has irrevocably lost the faith and trust of the people he was elected to serve,” the VLBC said. “Changing his public story today now casts further doubt on his ability to regain that trust.” The Democratic National Committee (DNC) chairman, Tom Perez, said in a statement released during the press conference that he had spoken to Northam in the morning and believed he should step down. Biden said: “Governor Northam has lost all moral authority and should resign immediately, Justin Fairfax is the leader Virginia needs now.”
Katy Perry & Luke Bryan Invited Themselves to Lionel Richie's Housevideo

Katy Perry & Luke Bryan Invited Themselves to Lionel Richie’s House

Luke talks about judging ABC's 'American Idol' with Katy Perry & Lionel Richie, and reveals what it was like having dinner at Lionel's house. Jimmy Kimmel Interviews 20-Year-Old Attacked by Snake, Bear & Shark SUBSCRIBE to get the latest…

Beyoncé and the End of Respectability Politics

It is a common belief among black people that the more successful we become, the more we should keep away from black culture — especially when white people are looking. Image Beyoncé’s mother, Tina Lawson, echoed this sentiment before her daughter’s performance: “I told Beyoncé that I was afraid that the predominately white audience at Coachella would be confused by all of the black culture and black college culture because it was something that they might not get,” she wrote on Instagram. “I have worked very hard to get to the point where I have a true voice,” Ms. Lawson recalls her daughter saying. “And at this point in my life and my career, I have a responsibility to do what’s best for the world and not what is most popular.” It would have made sense if Beyoncé decided to perform songs that were more culturally ambiguous, as to not alienate the people she was hired to entertain. She also amplified Malcolm X’s famous words about black women: “The most disrespected woman in America is the black woman. To Beyoncé, attending a historically black college is more than a niche experience coveted only by students and alumni. Beyoncé performed her sensuality proudly in those songs making political statement that a person can be both intellectually rigorous and sexually expressive. But it wasn’t clear whether, after Clive Davis called her “the first lady of music,” she would adhere to respectability politics, especially on a stage like Coachella, where she may have alienated a large portion of her audience. Black people often negotiate how much of ourselves we should show to make others comfortable. Beyoncé’s Coachella performance suggests that, as black people’s power grows, we should intentionally amplify the culture that nurtured us.