5 things you need to know now
5 things you need to know now
  • Republicans to unveil Senate health-care bill today

  • Trump says he told Republicans to 'add some money' and 'heart' to health bill

  • Intel chiefs say Trump asked them to publicly deny Russia collusion

  • Stabbing of officer at Flint airport investigated as terrorism

  • ISIS blamed for destruction of historic Mosul mosque

Senate leaders on Wednesday began circulating a discussion draft of their proposal to replace ObamaCare a day before its scheduled formal release. The working document seeks to roll back taxes and penalties in the Affordable Care Act, cut back its Medicaid expansion, change the Obama-era health law's subsidies, and give states more flexibility to opt out of some insurance requirements. The proposal also would cut off Planned Parenthood from federal funding. Congressional aides emphasized that the Senate GOP plan, which Democrats and most Republicans complained was drafted in total secret, would surely be changed to muster the 50 votes Republicans need to pass the legislation. With a slim majority, the GOP needs to get nearly all of its 52 senators on board, because no Democrats or independents are expected to back it.

Source: The Washington Post

During a rally in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Wednesday night reminiscent of his time on the campaign trail, President Trump brought up the GOP's plan to repeal and replace ObamaCare, saying, "I hope we are going to surprise you with a really good plan." Trump revealed that he has been "talking about a plan with heart," adding that he told Republican senators, "Add some money to it!" He acknowledged that the Republicans have a "very slim" majority in the Senate and "basically can't afford to lose anybody" when it comes time to vote. "If we could just get a few votes from the Democrats, it would be so easy and so beautiful," he said. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) plans on finally letting senators see a draft of the bill on Thursday.

Source: Fox News

National Intelligence Director Dan Coats and National Security Agency Director Mike Rogers reportedly told the Senate and Special Counsel Robert Mueller's team that President Trump had asked them to publicly announce there was no collusion between his campaign and Russia. A public hearing earlier this month did little to elucidate what unfolded in the intelligence directors' conversations with the president, in part because when the intel chiefs sought guidance from the White House on whether the talks were protected by executive privilege, they did not receive an answer. Both firmly stated they did not feel pressure to interfere in the investigation, although they described their interactions with the president as uncomfortable, and did not act on his request.

Source: CNN

A man stabbed a police officer in the neck at Bishop International Airport in Flint, Michigan, on Wednesday in what the FBI said it was investigating as "an act of terrorism." At least one witness said the attacker shouted "Allahu akbar," Arabic for "God is great," before stabbing Lt. Jeff Neville from behind. Investigators said that after his arrest the suspect, identified as Amor Ftouhi, said something like "you have killed people in Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan, and we are all going to die." Police said Ftouhi, 50, is from Quebec, and entered the U.S. legally on June 16. He reportedly asked officers who arrested him why they didn't kill him. If the attacker's motives are confirmed, the incident will be the first Islamist extremist terrorist attack on U.S. soil since President Trump took office, although there have been similar incidents recently in Europe. Neville was in critical but stable condition late Wednesday.

Source: The Associated Press

The Islamic State destroyed the centuries-old al-Nuri mosque in Mosul on Wednesday night, according to the Iraqi and U.S. militaries. Col. Ryan Dillon, an American military spokesman in Baghdad, said drone surveillance confirmed the historic mosque had been destroyed, but added, "We don't know how." Maj. Gen. Joseph Martin said ISIS blew up the mosque as "our Iraqi Security Force partners closed in." The mosque was where ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi declared a caliphate after his forces took control of Mosul during an offensive in northern Iraq and Syria. ISIS said it was a U.S. airstrike that brought down the mosque and its iconic leaning minaret, known as al-Hadba. The mosque was built by Nur al-Din Mahmoud Zangi, a 12th century ruler who unified Arabs against European crusaders.

Source: BBC, The New York Times
Start every morning with all you need to know
Delivered to your inbox