First Thing: Supreme court paves way for Congress to view Trump’s tax returns | Reported Crime

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The US supreme court will allow a congressional committee to receive copies of Donald Trump’s tax returns, ending a three-year battle by the Democratic-led body to see the documents the former president has refused to release since his first White House bid.

The court did not accompany its decision with any public comment, but it rejected Trump’s plea for an order that would have prevented the Treasury department from giving six years of tax returns for Trump and some of his businesses to the house ways and means committee.

The influential committee will continue to be led by a Democratic party chair, in this case the Massachusetts congressman Richard Neal, until the new Congress is sworn in January with the Republicans in the majority and therefore filling committee chairs, following the midterm elections.

It was Trump’s second loss at the supreme court in as many months, and third this year.

  • What were the other losses? In October, the court refused to step into the legal fight surrounding the FBI search of Trump’s Florida estate that turned up classified documents. In January, the court refused to stop the National Archives from turning over documents to the special house panel investigating the 6 January 2021 insurrection.

  • How should the media cover Trump’s 2024 run? We would like to hear from people in the US about how the media should cover Trump’s candidacy. Share your views here.

Up to 10 people killed in shooting at Walmart in Chesapeake, Virginia

Police at the scene of the mass shooting at a Walmart in Chesapeake, Virginia. Photograph: Kendall Warner/AP

A shooting at a Walmart in Chesapeake, Virginia, has left up to 10 people dead and wounded, local authorities say.

The shooter was among the dead, the City of Chesapeake tweeted on Tuesday. It said: “Chesapeake police confirm an active shooter incident with fatalities at the Walmart on Sam’s Circle. The shooter is deceased.”

Leo Kosinski, a spokesperson with the police department, said in a brief news conference that police received reports of a shooting at 10pm and arrived to find multiple fatalities.

The shooting is thought to have stopped when police arrived, said Kosinski, adding that he did not believe police had fired shots, but could not say whether the shooter died of a self-inflicted gunshot.

It was unclear how many people had died, but Kosinski said “no more” than 10 people were killed.

  • How many people are injured? Mike Kafka, a spokesperson for Sentara healthcare, said five patients from the Walmart were being treated at Norfolk general hospital.

US corporations gave more than $8m to election deniers’ midterm campaigns

Supporter of former President Trump wears QAnon shirt and holds a poster saying ‘Trump won!’
A supporter of former president Donald Trump wears a QAnon shirt and holds a poster saying ‘Trump won!’ Photograph: Jonathan Drake/Reuters

Some of the best-known corporations in the US, including AT&T, Boeing, Delta Air Lines and the Home Depot, collectively poured more than $8m into supporting election deniers running for US house and Senate seats in this month’s midterm elections, writes Ed Pilkington.

A study by the non-partisan government watchdog organization Accountable.US, based on the latest filings to the Federal Election Commission, reveals the extent to which big corporations were prepared to back Republican nominees despite their open peddling of false claims undermining confidence in democracy. Though many were ultimately unsuccessful in their election bids, the candidates included several prominent advocates of Trump’s lie that the 2020 presidential election had been stolen from him.

At the top of the list of 20 corporations backing election deniers through their political action committees (Pacs) is a familiar name in the world of rightwing agitating: Koch Industries. According to the Accountable.US review, the Koch energy conglomerate spent $771,000 through its Pac on Republican candidates with a track record of casting doubt on elections.

Koch Industries is the second-largest privately owned company in the US. It has been notorious for using its largely oil-related profits to push conservative politics in an anti-government, anti-regulatory direction under its owners, the brothers Charles Koch and David Koch (David died in 2019).

  • How much did the other companies spend? The American Crystal Sugar Company Pac spent $630,000; the AT&T Inc Employee Federal Pac contributed $579,000 and the Home Depot Inc Pac gave $578,000. Meanwhile, the Comcast Corporation and NBC Universal Pac contributed $365,000, and the Delta Air Lines Pac gave $278,000.

In other news …

Ukrainian firefighters working at a damaged hospital maternity ward in Vilniansk in the Zaporizhzhia region of Ukraine.
Ukrainian firefighters working at a damaged hospital maternity ward in Vilniansk in the Zaporizhzhia region of Ukraine. Photograph: AP
  • An overnight rocket attack struck a hospital maternity ward in southern Ukraine, killing a newborn baby, Ukrainian authorities have said. The child’s mother and a doctor were pulled alive from the rubble. The region’s governor said the rockets were Russian, AP reported.

  • Large-scale protests broke out at Foxconn’s vast iPhone factory in Zhengzhou, central China, images circulating on Weibo and Twitter appeared to show. Videos showed hundreds of workers marching on a road in daylight, with some being confronted by a row of riot police and people in hazmat suits.

  • The Scottish parliament can not hold a second independence referendum without Westminster approval, the UK supreme court has ruled. The unanimous judgment is likely to anger Scottish nationalists who say the country’s future is for Scottish voters to decide.

  • The second woman to allege that she was pressured into having an abortion by Herschel Walker, the Republican nominee in Georgia’s hotly contested US Senate race, on Tuesday presented previously unseen letters, audio recordings and pages of her personal diary that she said were evidence of their relationship, which he has denied.

Qatar World Cup: Saudi celebrates shock win as the row over rainbows continues

Saudi Arabia’s Salem al-Dawsari celebrates after scoring his side’s second goal against Argentina.
Saudi Arabia’s Salem al-Dawsari celebrates after scoring his side’s second goal against Argentina. Photograph: Ricardo Mazalán/AP

We had our first big shock of the tournament on Tuesday as Argentina, one of the favorites for the tournament, were beaten by Saudi Arabia, in one of the biggest upsets in World Cup history. Saudi Arabia declared a national holiday in celebration, while a reworked version of Argentina’s triband flag – in which the yellow sun at the center weeps uncontrollably – went viral on social media in Brazil.

The reigning champions, France, saw off Australia 4-1 after falling behind in the first half, with a commanding performance that suggests they have every intent on keeping their title.

Fifa met Qatari officials after Wales fans had rainbow-themed hats confiscated before their team’s match with the USA on Monday. Fifa reminded the hosts of their assurances before the tournament that everyone was welcome and rainbow flags would be allowed. Qatari authorities brought a new level of ridiculousness to their war on rainbows when security staff tried to confiscate the state flag of Brazil’s Pernambuco, which features a rainbow.

Elsewhere at the World Cup:

  • Three of the big guns play their opening matches on Wednesday. 2014 champions Germany play Japan (8am ET), 2010 champions Spain face Costa Rica (11am), and the supremely talented Belgium round out the action when they take on Canada (2pm ET). It is the Canadians’ first appearance at a men’s World Cup since 1986 (the women’s team are the reigning Olympic champions).

  • Matches are lasting longer at this World Cup. Fifa has asked officials to more accurately monitor when a game is stopped for goal celebrations, time wasting, video assistant referee decisions, substitutions, penalties and red cards – even if it means extending a match by many minutes. England’s match on Monday against Iran lasted a record-breaking 117 minutes.

  • Wondering where Argentina’s loss to Saudi Arabia ranks in the history of World Cup upsets? We have a handy list for you – and a victory for the US back in 1950 heads the pack.

Stat of the day: California legislature is 10% LGBTQ+ in record-setting year nationwide

Supporters of California State Senator Scott Wiener march during SF Pride parade on Market Street in San Francisco, Calif., on Sunday, June 26, 2022. (Scott Strazzante/San Francisco Chronicle via AP)
Supporters of California state senator Scott Wiener march during SF Pride parade on Market Street in San Francisco, California. Photograph: Scott Strazzante/AP

Amid a rise in anti-LGBTQ+ hate across the US, California reached a milestone in this year’s midterm elections: at least 10% of its lawmakers identify publicly as LGBTQ+, a figure believed to be a first for any legislature in the country. With 12 current or soon-to-be members of the legislature identifying as LGBTQ+, the statehouse has roughly reached parity in sexual orientation and gender identity – 9.1% of Californians are LGBT, according to the US census. The legislators, all Democrats, say that despite the wins, much work remains in California and the US, including the fallout from Florida’s “don’t say gay” law

Don’t miss this: Is it time to get rid of the Thanksgiving turkey?

Turkey dinner with all the trimmings.
Turkey shortages and inflation may make this the year to alter the holiday dinner. Photograph: CSA Images/Getty Images/Vetta

The Thanksgiving turkey is a golden idol, sitting at the center of the dinner table, so Thanksgiving without it is inconceivable, right? This may be the year we test that theory. Thanksgiving dinner will cost an average of 20% more than last year, owing to price increases in ingredients such as butter, cooking oil and sweet potatoes. On top of that inflation, there’s a turkey shortage because of an outbreak of avian flu which, as of late October, had killed 6 million turkeys across the US. So, here’s a radical proposal: maybe in this Thanksgiving of the turkey shortage, it’s time to do away with the big bird – and its sleep-inducing tryptophan – altogether.

Last Thing: Oldest cooked leftovers ever found suggest Neanderthals were foodies

Reconstructions of a Neanderthal man, left, and woman at the Neanderthal museum in Mettmann, Germany.
Reconstructions of a Neanderthal man, left, and woman at the Neanderthal museum in Mettmann, Germany. Photograph: Martin Meissner/AP

If you thought Neanderthals survived on a diet of foraged berries and uncooked animal flesh, think again. Charred remnants of what appear be the world’s oldest cooked meal ever found have been unearthed in a cave complex in northern Iraq, prompting speculation that Neanderthals may have been foodies. “Our findings are the first real indication of complex cooking – and thus of food culture – among Neanderthals,” said Chris Hunt, the professor who coordinated the excavation. Hunt and his colleagues have even tried to recreate one of the recipes. “It made a sort of pancake-cum-flatbread which was really very palatable – a sort of nutty taste,” Hunt said.

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First Thing: Supreme court paves way for Congress to view Trump’s tax returns | Reported Crime

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