Three of the nation’s top intelligence officials confirmed Tuesday they have seen evidence of Russian meddling in the upcoming midterm elections — part of what they say is Moscow’s escalating cyber assault on American and European democracies. “We have seen Russian activity and intentions to have an impact on the next election cycle,” CIA Director Mike Pompeo told the Senate Intelligence Com-mittee. National Intelligence Director Dan Coats and Adm. Mike Rogers, the head of the National Security Agency, agreed Russia’s interference is ongoing.
Trump prods Congress amid immigration debate: A high-stakes Senate debate over immigration got off to a halting start Tuesday, with Republican and Democratic leaders immediately at loggerheads over how to move forward and President Donald Trump warning this was the “last chance” to extend protections to “Dreamer” immigrants. Trump issued the warning in a morning tweet as the Senate opened what was billed as an unusual and open-ended debate on a host of immigration issues. But disagreement pushed any immigration-related votes into Wednesday.
Letter to Trump Jr. said, ‘You’re an awful person’: A law-enforcement official said a letter with a white powder sent to Donald Trump Jr. at his mother-in-law’s New York City home read, “You’re an awful person.” The official was not authorized to divulge details of an ongoing investigation involving multiple law-enforcement agencies and spoke to The Associated Press on the condition of anonymity Tuesday about the letter, which was mailed from Massachusetts and was received Monday. The official said the letter said Trump Jr. was getting what he “deserved.” The substance in the letter turned out to be cornstarch.
Ex-assemblyman plans to run for N.J. governor: Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy has been in office for about a month, and on Tuesday a former Republican lawmaker said he’s planning to challenge him in 2021. Former Assemblyman Jack Ciattarelli, who left office last year after a failed run in the Republican gubernatorial primary, said that “if asked today, I’m running.” The certified public accountant who owns a medical publishing company said Murphy, a former Goldman Sachs executive who has not held office before, “still hasn’t come to grips that his promises just aren’t realistic.” Ciattarelli said he plans to start a nonprofit to address property taxes, school funding and transportation.
French trial over sex with 11-year-old fuels debate on consent: A 29-year-old French man went on trial Tuesday in a Paris suburb for having sex with an 11-year-old girl, a case that has rekindled strong debate on the age of sexual consent in France. Unlike many countries, France does not have a legal age under which a minor cannot agree to a sexual relationship — although the country’s top court has ruled children aged 5 and under cannot consent.
— From our wire services
Lawyers for the suspect argued the girl was consenting and aware of what she was doing, while lawyers for the girl have said she was simply too young and confused to resist.
Slain doctor’s body may have been in home for months: A University of Connecticut scientist was arraigned Tuesday on charges she murdered her husband, a UConn doctor whose body may have been left inside their home since June. Linda Kosuda-Bigazzi, 70, declined comment as she entered Bristol Superior court for the hearing on a murder charge in the beating death of 84-year-old Dr. Pierluigi Bigazzi. He was a professor of laboratory science and pathology at UConn Health, and she worked with him.
TV station mistakenly uses P.F. Chang graphic for Pyeongchang report: Pyeongchang is a mountainous county 110 miles southeast of Seoul in South Korea, and the host of the 2018 Winter Olympics. P.F. Chang’s is an Asian-inspired chain restaurant with 210 U.S. locations. This distinction, however, appears to have eluded Chicago’s WLS-Ch.7 news team, which on Saturday morning accidentally broadcast a report about the political backdrop to the Winter Olympics, illustrated with the graphic, “P.F. Chang 2018.” Jayme Nicholas, a spokesperson for the ABC affiliate in Chicago, said the graphic was created for a different “satirical piece” in which viewers were encouraged to invent their own Olympic sports, but it was mistakenly also used for the serious news story.