5 things you need to know now
5 things you need to know now
  • 9 dead in helicopter crash that killed Kobe Bryant

  • Coronavirus death toll rises to 56

  • Full recording of Trump ordering Ukraine ambassador's firing released by Parnas' lawyer

  • Des Moines Register endorses Elizabeth Warren

  • 62nd annual Grammy Awards to air Sunday night

Former Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna were killed Sunday morning in a helicopter crash in the Los Angeles area. Bryant was 41. TMZ initially broke the news. The Bryants were on their way to Gianna's basketball game when the helicopter crashed over the suburb of Calabasas shortly before 10 a.m. PT. During a Sunday afternoon press conference, Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said the helicopter's manifest showed nine people were on board. He also said it was "wholly inappropriate" to report the names of the victims, and he would not confirm their identities until after "the coroner does their job" and next of kin are notified. Numerous athletes and celebrities have paid tribute to Bryant, who is widely considered one of the greatest NBA players of all time. During his 20-year career with the Lakers, which ended in 2016, Bryant led the team to five championship titles.

Source: ESPN, Los Angeles Times

The death toll resulting from the coronavirus that originated in Wuhan, China, increased to 56, China announced Sunday. Among the 15 most recent deaths was the first fatality from the outbreak in Shanghai. Meanwhile, 688 new cases of the respiratory virus were reported across China on Sunday, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 1,975. A third case was confirmed in the United States, after a person in Orange County, California, tested positive. The patient is reportedly in "good condition." China's National Health Commission Minister Ma Xiaowei said Sunday the coronavirus is "much more" contagious than originally thought. At the same time, public health officials urged calm as the central government announced it is taking the reins from local officials in the province of Hubei, where Wuhan is located.

Source: The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times

A recording from a donor dinner in 2018 during which President Trump orders the firing of former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch was released to the public Saturday. Excerpts of the tape were released earlier this week, but Joseph Bondy, the attorney for Lev Parnas, a Soviet-born businessman who worked with Trump's personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani to remove Yovanovitch, unveiled the full 90-minute tape. Trump can be heard saying "get rid of her," after he's alerted that Yovanovitch had been criticizing him. The recording was reportedly made by Igor Fruman, another associate of Giuliani and Parnas. Trump can also be heard asking how long Ukraine could "last in a fight against Russia." CNN could not conclusively identify the other speakers in the recording, but Fruman and Parnas, whom Trump says he doesn't know, appear to be among them.

Source: CNN, Fox News

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) received a key presidential endorsement from Iowa's most significant newspaper, The Des Moines Register, with just over a week to go before the state's Democratic caucus. The Register praised Warren's stance on the economy, describing her as a capitalist who supports fair markets and measures economic success not by the stock market or unemployment rate, but "how working families are doing." Warren, said the paper, is "not the radical some perceive her to be." While the Register normally plays a crucial role in Iowa politics, it's endorsement could mean even more than usual this year, per Politico, because of the tightly contested nature of the Democratic primary. Warren, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), former Vice President Joe Biden, and former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg all are within striking distance of a victory.

Source: Politico, The Des Moines Register

The 62nd annual Grammy Awards will air live from the Staples Center in Los Angeles on Sunday evening at 8 p.m. E.T. on CBS. Official red carpet coverage will begin an hour earlier on Entertainment Tonight on CBS, and E! will begin its own coverage even earlier at 4 p.m. E.T. The awards ceremony will also stream live online at CBS All-Access. Alicia Keys will host this year's show, which will include performances from Aerosmith, Billie Eilish, Ariana Grande, Lizzo, Demi Lovato, and Lil Nas X.

Source: Vulture, Rolling Stone
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