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    A part of Donald Trump Jr.'s speech during the Republican National Convention was a near-exact repetition of a small part of an American Conservative article written by F.H. Buckley, titled "Trump vs. the New Class," NBC News reported.

    "Our schools used to be an elevator to the middle class. Now they're stalled on the ground floor. They're like Soviet-Era Department stores that are run for the benefit of the clerks and not the customers," Trump's son said in his speech Tuesday night.

    The line in Buckley's article reads, "Our schools and universities are like the old Soviet department stores whose mission was to serve the interests of the sales clerks and not the customers."

    Buckley, who helped write Trump Jr.'s speech, quickly sought to stop any claims of plagiarism, tweeting, "Except it wasn't stealing..."

    This latest distraction comes after Melania Trump delivered a speech on Monday, which appeared to be plagiarized from Michelle Obama's 2008 Democratic convention speech.



    Photo Credit: AP

    Donald Trump, Jr., son of Republican Presidential Candidate Donald Trump, lifts his fist after speaking during the second day of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Tuesday, July 19, 2016.Donald Trump, Jr., son of Republican Presidential Candidate Donald Trump, lifts his fist after speaking during the second day of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Tuesday, July 19, 2016.

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    On the second night of the Republican National Convention, GOP leaders used their disdain for Hillary Clinton as their case for a Donald Trump presidency, NBC News reported. 

    The presumptive Democratic nominee on Tuesday night, perhaps even more than Trump, was again the star of the convention even as the night was tentatively themed "Make America Work Again" and was meant to focus on the economy.

    Few speakers addressed the topic of jobs, using their time on the podium to litigate a host of other issues against Clinton. The former secretary of state provided a desperately needed change of subject for a party bitterly divided over its own nominee's competence, ethics, and policy acumen.

    In the best-received speech of the evening, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie didn't discuss the economy at all. He devoted his remarks to "prosecuting" Clinton's foreign policy record point by point for the audience, who shouted "guilty!" at the individual charges.



    Photo Credit: Getty Images

    Andrew Christie, right, takes a photo of a delegate and his father, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, while attending the first day of the Republican National Convention along with his son Andrew Christie, right, on July 18, 2016, at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio. Christie devoted his RNC speech to Andrew Christie, right, takes a photo of a delegate and his father, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, while attending the first day of the Republican National Convention along with his son Andrew Christie, right, on July 18, 2016, at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio. Christie devoted his RNC speech to "prosecuting" Clinton's foreign policy record point by point.

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    Police have arrested a suspect in a home invasion and sexual assault in Torrington and said another suspect is in custody on unrelated charges.

    Police responded to a home on Pearl Street on Sunday after two men forced their way into the house, assaulted a woman and stole several items, police said.

    The victim was transported to Charlotte Hungerford Hospital, treated for injuries and later released. Police said she did know one of the suspects.

    Police took Hillary D. Combs, 46, of Norwich, into custody and charged him with home invasion, first-degree robbery, first-degree burglary, first-degree sexual assault and first-degree attempted sexual assault.

    Combs was held on a court-set $350,000 bond and will appear in Bantam Superior Court today to be arraigned.

    Police are still investigating and said a second suspect is incarcerated on unrelated charges.

    Anyone with information should call Detective Kyle Johnson 860-489-2038 or Sergeant Brett Johnson 860-489-2051.



    Photo Credit: Torrington Police

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    Metro-North will be providing substitute busing between New Canaan and Stamford stations for some trains on Fridays and for all trains on Saturdays and Sundays from July 22 through Aug. 21 to allow for work on grade crossings. 

    Buses will operate 15 to 20 minutes earlier than scheduled trains. 

    See the full schedule. 



    Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

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  • 07/20/16--05:31: Hot Dogs, Corn Dogs Recalled

  • Bar-S Foods Company is recalling nearly 400,000 pounds of hot dogs and corn dogs due to possible listeria contamination, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

    The Oklahoma-based company issued the recall Tuesday for chicken and pork hot dogs and corn dogs produced July 10 through 13 and sold nationwide, the USDA said.

    Recalled products include:

    • 16-ounce packages of Bun Length Franks with a "use by" date of Oct. 11, 2016, and case code 209.
    • 12-ounce packages of Classic Franks with package code 6338, "use by"date of Oct. 10, 2016, and case code 6405.
    • 24-ounce cartons of Signature Pick 5 Corn Dogs with a "use by" date of April 6, 2017, and case code 6071.
    • 42.72-ounce cartons of Classic Corn Dogs with "use by"dates of April 7-8, 2017, and case code 6396.
    • 48-ounce cartons of Classic Corn Dogs with package code 14054, "use by" dates of April 6 and 9, 2017, and case code 14038.

    Bar-S informed the Dallas office of the USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service of the precautionary recall Tuesday. The company is awaiting test results but cited "recurring Listeria species issues at the firm," according to the USDA. No illnesses have been reported.

    Consumption of food contaminated with listeria monocytogenes can lead to listeriosis. Symptoms include fever, muscle aches, headache, stiff neck, confusion, loss of balance and convulsions sometimes preceded by diarrhea or other gastrointestinal symptoms.

    The company is urging anyone who purchased these products to throw them away or return them to the place of purchase.

    More information is available by calling the Bar-S Foods Consumer Hotline at 1-888-965-6134.



    Photo Credit: U.S. Department of Agriculture

    Bar-S Food Company issued a recall Tuesday for chicken and pork hot dogs and corn dogs sold nationwide.Bar-S Food Company issued a recall Tuesday for chicken and pork hot dogs and corn dogs sold nationwide.

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    Police are investigating the suspicious death of a man in his 40s who died from a gunshot wound at Stanley Quarter Park in New Britain.

    Police officers, firefighters and EMS crews responded to the park around 7:45 a.m. on Tuesday after someone found the man down near the skate park.

    He was pronounced dead at the scene and police said they are calling the death suspicious, but they have not called it a homicide.

    Police are working to identify the man and determine when he died.  

    "We don't believe he was there for a prolonged time," Captain Thomas Steck, of New Britain Police, said.

    The park is open and police reinforce that the park is safe.

    "It's a safe park. We don't have any problems here," Steck said. "Certainly, this is out of the norm for us, specifically in our park systems."

    No additional information is available, but the investigation is ongoing.



    Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

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    FactCheck.org is a non-partisan non-profit organization that will hold candidates and key figures accountable during the 2016 presidential campaign. FactCheck.org will check facts of of speeches, advertisements and more for NBC.

    CLEVELAND — The theme of the second night of the Republican convention was “Make America Work Again,” but the false and misleading claims we flagged touched on topics beyond the economy and jobs:

    • Donald Trump Jr. distorted Clinton’s gun control proposal, claiming, as his father did, that she wants to “take away Americans’ guns.” Clinton’s gun control proposal doesn’t call for taking away guns.
    • Two speakers claimed that Clinton paid women less than men in her Senate office. That’s true if one includes only workers who worked for Clinton full-time for a full year, but it’s not accurate if including workers who worked part of the year or took unpaid leaves of absences.
    • Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson and former U.S. Attorney General Michael B. Mukasey both mentioned Clinton’s “what difference does it make” quote on Benghazi, but left out the context of that remark. Clinton didn’t say that the loss of life in Benghazi didn’t make a difference.
    • Sens. Dan Sullivan of Alaska and Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia took Clinton’s words on coal-mining jobs out of context. Capito said Clinton “promised to devastate communities and families across coal country.” But Clinton said she wants to bring renewable energy jobs to coal country to replace lost coal jobs.
    • Capito used a one-sided report and back-of-the-envelope calculation to claim that “the burden of government regulations in this country amounts to $15,000 a household.” And she exaggerated the number of coal mining jobs that have been lost since 2011, putting the figure at 60,000, when it’s 36,700.
    • Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell wrongly said that Clinton was for the Keystone XL pipeline before she was against it. She did not take a position until she opposed the pipeline in 2015.
    • Capito also said the Obama “economic agenda” has led to “the lowest workforce participation in decades,” but the rate began its decline in the late 1990s and is due mainly to baby boomers retiring and other demographic factors. The unemployment rate, meanwhile, is below the historical norm.
    • Sen. Jeff Sessions claimed that “respect for America has fallen,” but the U.S. is viewed more favorably in many countries now than it was before President Obama took office.
    • Donald Trump Jr. also wrongly said that his father “funded his entire primary run out of his own pocket.” Trump provided about 73 percent of the funding, but not all of it.

    Note to Readers

    Our managing editor, Lori Robertson, is on the scene in Cleveland. This story was written with the help of the entire staff, based in Philadelphia and Washington, D.C. Next week, we will dispatch our staffers in Philadelphia for the Democratic convention. We intend to vet the major speeches at both conventions for factual accuracy, applying the same standards to both.

    Analysis

    Distorting Clinton’s Gun Stance

    Donald Trump Jr. followed in his father’s footsteps in distorting the facts on Clinton’s gun control proposals. He claimed that Clinton would “take away Americans’ guns,” but she doesn’t propose a ban on all guns or taking away guns.

    Trump Jr.: She says she’ll issue executive orders to take away Americans’ guns. She wants to appoint judges that will abolish the Second Amendment.

    Trump’s language was similar to that of his father, who has claimed that “Clinton wants to take your guns away and she wants to abolish the Second Amendment.” As we’ve written before, her gun control proposal calls for restrictions, such as a ban on semi-automatic “assault weapons” and expanded background checks, but she doesn’t propose taking away guns.

    Her gun violence prevention proposal, which is on her campaign website, calls for expanding background checks to some private sales online and at gun shows, changing the federal law that allows gun buyers to purchase a gun if a background check remains incomplete after three days, and reinstating a ban on certain semi-automatic “assault weapons” that expired in 2004. That law didn’t ban any guns in circulation before it took effect.

    As for “abolish[ing] the Second Amendment,” that claim is likely based on Clinton’s comment in a 2015 speech that “the Supreme Court is wrong on the Second Amendment, and I am going to make that case every chance I get.” But that comment was about a specific case, the 2008 Supreme Court ruling that found the handgun ban in Washington, D.C., unconstitutional. The conservative Washington Free Beacon wrote that Clinton “appeared to be criticizing” that ruling, and her campaign confirmed to us that she was referring to that case.

    Campaign spokesman Josh Schwerin said Clinton “believes Heller was wrongly decided in that cities and states should have the power to craft common sense laws to keep their residents safe.”

    In her own words, in April, Clinton talked about protecting the gun rights of lawful gun owners: “There is a Second Amendment, there are constitutional rights. We aren’t interested in taking away guns of lawful, responsible gun owners.”

    Gender Pay in Clinton’s Senate Office

    Two featured speakers at the convention claimed that Clinton paid women less than men in her Senate office. That’s true if one includes only workers who worked for Clinton full-time for a full year, but it’s not accurate if one also includes workers who only worked part of the year, or who took brief unpaid leaves of absences.

    Annual salary data provided to us by the Clinton campaign show median salaries for men and women in Clinton’s office were virtually identical if one included employees who only worked part of the year.

    The issue of pay disparity in Clinton’s Senate office was first raised at the convention by Sharon Day, co-chair of the Republican National Committee.

    Day: She [Clinton] repeatedly plays the gender card. In fact, she boasts, “Deal me in.” Well Mrs. Clinton, consider yourself dealt in. Because as a senator you paid women less than the men in your office.

    Later in the night, Kimberlin Brown, an actress best known for her roles on two soap operas, said that in “then Senator Clinton’s office … men have been paid better than women.”

    We took an in-depth look at this issue back in April 2015 when RNC Chairman Reince Priebus made a similar claim. Those attacking Clinton base their claims of gender pay disparity on a report by the Washington Free Beacon of publicly available expense reports submitted biannually to the secretary of the Senate. Looking at median salaries among full-time, year-round employees, the Free Beacon concluded that women working in Clinton’s Senate office were paid 72 cents for each dollar paid to men.

    The Clinton campaign provided FactCheck.org a list of the names, titles and annual salaries of every full-time person employed in Clinton’s Senate office between 2002 and 2008. Those data show the median salary for men and women to be the same at $40,000. The data also show Clinton hired roughly twice as many women as men.

    The Clinton list of salaries included full-time workers who may have worked only part of the year, or who took brief unpaid leaves of absence. Experts told us that Clinton’s methodology was reasonable, because Senate staffers often toggle between Senate and campaign work. But experts also told us the Free Beacon methodology was legitimate, too.

    “There are many different ways to measure these things and you will get slightly different answers,” Eileen Patten, a research analyst at the Pew Research Center, told us last year. “It’s not that either data set is flawed. They just show different things.”

    Context Makes a Difference

    Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson led his speech with an oft-used quote from Hillary Clinton on the Sept. 11, 2012, Benghazi attacks, but he left out the full context.

    Johnson: “What difference, at this point, does it make?” I am the guy that got under her skin and provoked that infamous response from Hillary Clinton by asking a pretty simple question: “Why didn’t you just pick up the phone and call the survivors?”

    Former U.S. Attorney General Michael B. Mukasey was more egregious in misrepresenting Clinton’s quote, saying: “So I guess about her emails we’re soon gonna hear the same infamous question that we heard about the death of four Americans in Benghazi, what difference at this point does it make?” Clinton didn’t say that the deaths didn’t make a difference.

    Johnson’s initial question in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on Jan. 23, 2013, was about ascertaining whether the attack on the diplomatic facilities in Benghazi started “spontaneously” in response to an anti-Muslim video on the internet, as the Obama administration initially said, or whether it was a terrorist attack, which the administration later acknowledged. (See our latest “Benghazi Timeline” story for more on that.)

    Johnson asked: “But, Madame Secretary, do you disagree with me that a simple phone call to those evacuees to determine what happened wouldn’t have ascertained immediately that there was no protest? That was a piece of information that could have been easily, easily obtained?”

    Clinton said she didn’t want to “interfere” with the FBI or State Department investigations. After some back-and-forth, she made the “what difference does it make” comment, saying, “With all due respect, the fact is we had four dead Americans. Was it because of a protest or was it because of guys out for a walk one night who decided that they’d they go kill some Americans? What difference at this point does it make? It is our job to figure out what happened and do everything we can to prevent it from ever happening again, Senator.”

    Republicans, like Mukasey, have portrayed the remarks as being uncaring toward the lives lost that night. Johnson himself went on to describe in his speech several victims of terrorists attacks, saying “it made a difference” to them. But Clinton’s full remarks indicate she was concerned about the lives lost.

    Here’s the fuller exchange between Johnson and Clinton:

    Johnson: But, Madame Secretary, do you disagree with me that a simple phone call to those evacuees to determine what happened wouldn’t have ascertained immediately that there was no protest? I mean, that was a piece of information that could have been easily, easily obtained?

    Clinton: But, Senator, again—

    Johnson: Within hours, if not days?

    Clinton: Senator, you know, when you’re in these positions, the last thing you want to do is interfere with any other process going on, number one—

    Johnson: I realize that’s a good excuse.

    Clinton: Well, no, it’s the fact. Number two, I would recommend highly you read both what the ARB said about it and the classified ARB because, even today, there are questions being raised. Now, we have no doubt they were terrorists, they were militants, they attacked us, they killed our people. But what was going on and why they were doing what they were doing is still unknown —

    Johnson: No, again, we were misled that there were supposedly protests and that something sprang out of that — an assault sprang out of that — and that was easily ascertained that that was not the fact, and the American people could have known that within days and they didn’t know that.

    Clinton: With all due respect, the fact is we had four dead Americans. Was it because of a protest or was it because of guys out for a walk one night who decided that they’d they go kill some Americans? What difference at this point does it make? It is our job to figure out what happened and do everything we can to prevent it from ever happening again, Senator. Now, honestly, I will do my best to answer your questions about this, but the fact is that people were trying in real time to get to the best information. The IC has a process, I understand, going with the other committees to explain how these talking points came out. But you know, to be clear, it is, from my perspective, less important today looking backwards as to why these militants decided they did it than to find them and bring them to justice, and then maybe we’ll figure out what was going on in the meantime.

    Targeting Coal Miners?

    Sen. Dan Sullivan of Alaska and Sen. Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia took Clinton’s words on coal-mining jobs out of context. Sullivan claimed that Clinton “promised” to “target” coal miners and oil drillers for “extinction.” Capito said Clinton “promised to devastate communities and families across coal country.”

    Clinton has said she wants to “move away from coal,” but added, “we don’t want to forget those people.” She promised to bring renewable energy jobs to coal country to replace lost coal jobs.

    Sullivan: We will put coal miners and oil drillers back to work, not target them for extinction as Hillary has promised.

    Capito: Hillary Clinton has already promised to put a lot of coal miners and coal companies out of business. She wants to put thousands more Americans out of work. She has promised to devastate communities and families across coal country.

    Sullivan and Capito were referring to Clinton’s much-criticized comments at a CNN town hall forum in March. Journalist Roland Martin asked Clinton to make her case for why “poor whites who live in Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama” should vote for her and support her economic policies.

    Her critics focused on a part of her response in which she said, “we’re going to put a lot of coal miners and coal companies out of business.” But she said more than that. Sullivan and Capito ignore her promise to create new jobs for communities hurt by the shift away from coal.

    Clinton, March 13: Look, we have serious economic problems in many parts of our country. And Roland is absolutely right. Instead of dividing people the way Donald Trump does, let’s reunite around policies that will bring jobs and opportunities to all these underserved poor communities.

    So for example, I’m the only candidate which has a policy about how to bring economic opportunity using clean renewable energy as the key into coal country. Because we’re going to put a lot of coal miners and coal companies out of business, right, Tim?

    And we’re going to make it clear that we don’t want to forget those people. Those people labored in those mines for generations, losing their health, often losing their lives to turn on our lights and power our factories.

    Now we’ve got to move away from coal and all the other fossil fuels, but I don’t want to move away from the people who did the best they could to produce the energy that we relied on.

    Clinton later apologized for her remark about putting coal miners out of work, explaining “what I said was totally out of context from what I meant.” As we wrote, former President Bill Clinton campaigned for his wife in Kentucky and elaborated on her point that renewable energy can create jobs in fossil fuel states (although he exaggerated the amount of electricity that Texas gets from wind energy).

    Regulation Exaggeration

    Capito used a one-sided report to claim that “the burden of government regulations in this country amounts to $15,000 a household.” The figure, oft-cited in conservative circles, is based on a conservative group’s admitted “back-of-the-envelope” calculation of estimated regulatory costs that does not include any potential savings.

    Capito: Right now, the burden of government regulations in this country amounts to $15,000 a household. So let me ask you … a couple of questions — are you ready? Alright. Is burdening every household in America with a cost of $15,000 — worth more applause lines at campaign rallies? Is burdening every household in America with a cost of $15,000 — worth more campaign cash? Is burdening every household in America with a cost of $15,000 — worth a few more one-liners?

    As we wrote in February 2015, the figure cited by Capito comes from an admitted “back-of-the-envelope” calculation from a report by the Competitive Enterprise Institute, a staunch opponent of government over-regulation. In the report, “Ten Thousand Commandments: An Annual Snapshot of the Federal Regulatory State,” author Clyde Wayne Crews Jr. calculates the 2013 cost of federal regulatory compliance at nearly $1.9 trillion. To arrive at the cost-per-family figure, that $1.9 trillion was simply divided by the number of American households. By that math, Crews argues, “each U.S. household ‘pays’ $14,974 annually in a hidden regulatory tax.”

    The $1.9 trillion figure is based on the Office of Management and Budget’s annual reports to Congress on the benefits and costs of federal regulation. The problem is that the Competitive Enterprise report focused on the “costs” and ignored the “benefits” listed in those reports. The OMB typically makes the case that benefits exceed costs. For example, the White House argued in 2012 that regulations that have short-term costs often result in long-term savings. “In areas that include food and workplace safety, clean air, fuel economy, energy efficiency, and investor protection, well-designed regulations are preventing tens of thousands of premature deaths and hundreds of thousands of illnesses and accidents — and saving billions of dollars,” the report states.

    While one can take issue with the OMB’s cost-benefit analyses, to highlight the costs while ignoring benefits tells only half the story.

    Capito also exaggerated when she claimed that Obama’s “recklessness” had deprived more than 60,000 coal workers of their jobs since 2011.

    Capito: His recklessness has cost more than 60,000 — 60,000 — coal workers their jobs since 2011.

    To be sure, there has been a 41 percent decline in coal mining jobs since the end of 2011, and the administration’s policies favoring cleaner sources of energy and discouraging the burning of coal have played a role. But so have competing energy sources, such as natural gas, and technology, and according to figures from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the total number of coal mining jobs lost during that period is under 36,700 — well below the figure Capito cited.

    Clinton’s Position on Keystone

    Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said that Hillary Clinton backed the Keystone XL pipeline before she came out against it. She said in 2010 that the administration was “inclined” to support the project, but that it was still under review. Clinton never took an official position until 2015, when she opposed it.

    McConnell: Hillary has changed her position on so many times, it’s impossible to tell where the conviction ends and the ambition begins. … Once a backer of the Keystone pipeline, last year she opposed it.

    The claim that Clinton backed the Keystone XL pipeline is based on an answer she gave during a community forum at the Commonwealth Club in 2010.

    Clinton was asked about the Alberta Clipper, a different pipeline project. But the answer she gave was about the Keystone XL pipeline, which would be built by TransCanada Corp. and would run 1,179 miles from Hardisty, Alberta, to Steele City, Nebraska, where it would connect with existing pipelines to refineries on the Gulf Coast.

    At the time, Clinton said that the administration was “inclined” to approve the Keystone proposal, but she stopped short of fully embracing it, saying that “a final decision” had not been made because the administration had not completed its analysis.

    Question, Oct. 15, 2010: Another international issue that you signed in on last year was the Alberta Clipper, a pipeline from Alberta that brings tar sands, oil sands directly into Wisconsin to the U.S. Midwest. This is some of the dirtiest fuel in the world. And how can the U.S. be saying climate change is a priority when we’re mainlining some of the dirtiest fuel that exists. (Applause.)

    Clinton: Well, there hasn’t been a final decision made. It is —

    Question: Are you willing to reconsider it?

    Clinton: Probably not. (Laughter.) And we — but we haven’t finish all of the analysis. So as I say, we’ve not yet signed off on it. But we are inclined to do so and we are for several reasons — going back to one of your original questions — we’re either going to be dependent on dirty oil from the Gulf or dirty oil from Canada. And until we can get our act together as a country and figure out that clean, renewable energy is in both our economic interests and the interests of our planet — (applause) — I mean, I don’t think it will come as a surprise to anyone how deeply disappointed the president and I are about our inability to get the kind of legislation through the Senate that the United States was seeking.

    For years after those comments, Clinton declined to publicly take a position on the Keystone pipeline until September 2015, during a campaign event in Iowa, when she opposed it.

    Clinton, Sept. 22, 2015: As I said, you know, I was in a unique position having been secretary of state, having started this process and not wanting to, you know, interfere with the ongoing decision making that both the president and Secretary [John] Kerry have to do in order to make whatever the final decision might be. So, I thought this would be decided by now and therefore I could tell you whether I agreed or I disagreed. But it hasn’t been decided, and I feel now I’ve got a responsibility to you and other voters who ask me about this. And I think it is imperative that we look at the Keystone pipeline as what I believe it is — a distraction from the important work we have to do to combat climate change. And, unfortunately, from my perspective, one that interferes with our ability to move forward to deal with all the other issues. Therefore, I oppose it. And I oppose it because I don’t think, I don’t think it’s in the best interest of what we need to do to combat climate change.

    As Clinton said during the first Democratic presidential debate in October 2015: “I never took a position on Keystone until I took a position on Keystone.”

    Labor Participation

    Capito also said Clinton would “double down on an [Obama] economic agenda — that’s led to the lowest workforce participation in decades.”

    But Obama’s “economic agenda” hasn’t caused the decline in the labor force participation rate, which actually started going down in the late 1990s, a full decade before he took office. Furthermore, the decline is due mainly to millions of baby boomers reaching retirement age and other demographic factors.

    Capito didn’t mention that the rate of joblessness among those who want work and are looking for it is now 4.9 percent — well below the historical norm. Meanwhile the number of job openings has more than doubled under Obama, to the highest number in the more than 15 years the Bureau of Labor Statistics has been tracking it.

    No Respect?

    Sen. Jeff Sessions of Alabama said that “respect for America has fallen. Crime is rising.” Neither statement is true.

    As we’ve written before, the U.S. is viewed more favorably now than it was before Obama took office in 2009. According to the Pew Global Attitudes Project’s June 2016 update, the percentage of those with favorable views of the U.S. increased in countries such as Japan, Italy, France, Britain, Germany and China. Among the few countries in which the U.S. favorable rating has slipped is Russia, where U.S. favorability plunged to 15 percent in 2015, down 31 percentage points from 2008.

    Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump made a similar claim about crime rates in a July 11 speech in Virginia Beach. As we wrote then, the violent crime rate is lower now than it has been since 1970. The rate has been on a steady decline since it peaked at 758.2 in 1991. It was less than half that, 365.5 in 2014. (The FBI describes its data as “estimated,” and as we mentioned it comes from voluntary reports from local law enforcement agencies. The “rate” is the number of offenses per 100,000 people.)

    The murder and nonnegligent manslaughter rate nationwide was 4.5 in 2014, the lowest point since at least the early 1960s, when the rate dipped as low as 4.6. (Note the numbers do not include lives lost in the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.)

    Trump’s Self-funding

    Donald Trump Jr. said that his father “funded his entire primary run out of his own pocket.” Trump provided most of the funding for his primary campaign, but not all of it.

    Trump Jr.: A president not beholden to special interests, foreign and domestic, and one who funded his entire primary run out of his own pocket just to prove it.

    On May 26, CNN reported that Trump had reached the required number of delegates to clinch the Republican presidential nomination. And as of May 31, Trump’s campaign had raised nearly $65 million, according to funding records from the Federal Election Commission.

    Trump contributed $395,508 directly to his campaign and loaned it another $45.7 million. But the Trump campaign spent more than $63.2 million through the end of May, according to FEC records.

    The rest of the money the campaign spent came from individual donations from campaign contributors. And as of the end of May, the campaign had received a total of nearly $17.1 million from donors other than Trump.

    So, Trump funded roughly 73 percent of his primary campaign through contributions and loans.

    — Lori Robertson, with Eugene Kiely, Brooks Jackson, Robert Farley and D’Angelo Gore

    Sources

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    Bradner, Eric, et al. “Hillary Clinton opposes Keystone XL pipeline.” CNN. 22 Sep 2015.

    CNN. “Democratic Presidential Debate in Las Vegas.” Transcript. 13 Oct 2015.

    Federal Election Commission. Donald J. Trump for President, Inc. Report of Receipts and Disbursements. 20 Jun 2016.

    “Full Rush Transcript Hillary Clinton Part//CNN TV One Democratic Presidential Town Hall.” CNN Press Room. 13 Mar 2016.

    Reilly, Katie. “Clinton Apologizes for Saying She’d Put Coal Out of Business.” Time. 3 May 2016.

    Kiely, Eugene. “Bill Clinton’s Economic Exaggerations.” FactCheck.org. 18 May 2016.

    Crews, Clyde Wayne. “Ten Thousand Commandments: An Annual Snapshot of the Federal Regulatory State.” Competitive Enterprise Institute. 2014.

    White House Office of Management and Budget. “2014 Draft Report to Congress on the Benefits and Costs of Federal Regulations and Unfunded Mandates on State, Local, and Tribal Entities.” 2014.

    Sunstein, Cass. “Making Regulation Smarter to Save Lives and Money.” White House Blog. 10 May 2012.

    Farley, Robert. “Gender Pay Gap in Clinton’s Senate Office?” FactCheck.org. 22 Apr 2015.

    Scher, Brent. “Hillary Clinton’s War on Women.” Washington Free Beacon. 23 Feb 2015.

    US. Bureau of Labor Statistics, All Employees: Mining and Logging: Coal Mining [CEU1021210001], retrieved from FRED, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis. 20 Jul 2016.

    Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Labor Force Statistics from the Current Population Survey; Labor Force Participation Rate.” Data extracted 20 Jul 2016.

    Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Labor Force Statistics from the Current Population Survey; Unemployment Rate, Seasonally Adjusted.” Data extracted 20 Jul 2016.

    Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey: Job Openings, Seasonally Adjusted.” Data extracted 20 Jul 2016.

    Kiely, Eugene. “Trump Distorts Clinton’s Gun Stance.” FactCheck.org. 10 May 2016.

    Clinton, Hillary. Gun violence prevention. HillaryClinton.com. accessed 19 Jul 2016.

    C-Span.org. Clip of Senate Hearing on Benghazi Consulate Attack. 23 Jan 2013.



    Photo Credit: John Moore/Getty Images

    Donald Trump Jr. delivers a speech on the second day of the Republican National Convention on July 19, 2016, at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio.Donald Trump Jr. delivers a speech on the second day of the Republican National Convention on July 19, 2016, at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio.

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    Donald J. Trump officially became the presidential nominee of the Republican Party on the second day of its convention in Cleveland on Tuesday -- as his children and the Republican leadership took the stage. Here are some of the night's top moments that you might have missed.

    Trump Clinches the Nomination
    Donald Trump locked up the Republican Party's presidential nomination on Tuesday just after 7 p.m. when his son, Donald Trump Jr., announced from the floor that the majority of New York's delegates were casting their vote for him.

    "It is my honor to be able to throw Donald Trump over the top in the delegate count tonight with 89 delegates and another six for John Kasich," he said. "Congratulations Dad, we love you."

    The younger Trump pledged that the campaign would put the solidly Democratic New York into play in the November election with support from areas that are not particularly conservative.

    "It's not a campaign anymore," the younger Trump said. "It’s a movement. Speaking to real Americans, giving them a voice again."

    The Stop Trump movement was stopped but not without embarrassment. Kasich has not endorsed Trump and the Ohio governor has refused to attend the convention in his home state.

    Washington, D.C.'s delegation tried to award 10 votes to U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio and nine to Kasich in accordance with its primary results, but was turned back by convention officials. All of its votes went to Trump. On MSNBC, one of the Kasich delegates called the rule interpretation an outrage.

    Alaska's delegation objected to the same rule by demanding a roll call vote. The request was denied -- and all of its delegates also went to Trump -- but the convention's speakers were delayed.

    A Hello from New York
    Donald Trump left Cleveland for New York City but returned to the convention remotely. He was proud to be the Republican nominee, he said.

    "By the way, we are going to win the state of Ohio and also of course we are going to win the presidency," he said.

    He promised to restore law and order and a strong border, to eliminate the Islamic State and to put the American people first.

    Trump will be in Cleveland again on Wednesday with his running mate, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence.

    Auditioning for Attorney General?
    New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, a former federal prosecutor, told the audience that because the U.S. Justice Department had refused to prosecute Hillary Clinton, he would present the facts and let them sit as a jury of her peers.

    "She fights for the wrong people," he said. "She never fights for us."

    He called her the architect of the disastrous overthrow of the Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi, an apologist for Nigeria's Boko Haram, which later abducted still-missing school girls, an awful judge of Syria President Bashar al-Assad and the inept negotiator of a nuclear arms deal with Iran, the worst in U.S. history.

    Guilty or not guilty, he asked in what became a refrain. 

    "Lock her up," the crowd chanted.

    Clinton fired back on Twitter with a reference to the George Washington Bridge lane-closing scandal

    "If you think Chris Christie can lecture anyone on ethics, we have a bridge to sell you," she wrote.

    Family Trump

    In addition to Donald Trump Jr.'s role in his father's nomination, he gave what some commentators called the best speech of the convention. He described his father as his mentor and his best friend, a man who never gives up, who changed the skyline of New York City.

    "For my father, impossible is just the starting point," he said. "That's how he approaches business projects. That's how he approaches life."

    He said his father had spent his career with regular Americans, pouring concrete and hanging sheetrock on construction sites, valuing their opinions as much or more than the graduates of Harvard University or Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.

    "We didn't learn from MBAs," the son said. "We learned from people who had doctorates in common sense."

    Donald Trump's daughter, Tiffany Trump, called her father "a natural born encourager" whose "desire for excellence is contagious."

    "He always helped me be the best version of myself by encouragement and by example," she said.

    They spoke as fallout continued over Melania Trump's speech Monday night — a portion of which was nearly identical to one Michelle Obama gave in 2008. NBC News reported that the original draft of the speech did not include the disputed section.

    The campaign denied there had been any plagiarism in the speech by Donald Trump's wife, and deflected questions about whether anyone should be fired. Paul Manafort, Trump's campaign chairman, accused Hillary Clinton of bringing attention to the accusations. But Donald Trump Jr. seemed to blame unidentified speechwriters and the former campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski, who was pushed out in favor of Manafort, said Manafort should take responsibility.

     

    Emilie Plesset contributed information to this article.



    Photo Credit: AP

    Republican Presidential Candidate Donald Trump's children Donald Trump, Jr., Ivanka Trump, Eric Trump and Tiffany Trump celebrate on the convention floor during the second day session of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Tuesday, July 19, 2016.Republican Presidential Candidate Donald Trump's children Donald Trump, Jr., Ivanka Trump, Eric Trump and Tiffany Trump celebrate on the convention floor during the second day session of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Tuesday, July 19, 2016.

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    There are heavy delays on Interstate 84 West in Middlebury after a dump truck crash just before exit 16 and there are also heavy delays on I-84 East in Waterbury. 

    It’s not clear if anyone was injured.



    Photo Credit: Connecticut Department of Transportation Traffic Cameras

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    Police are investigating a death at Marion and Bunker Hill avenues in Waterbury.

    Witnesses said they heard several gunshots at 4:47 a.m., then there was a pause that was followed by more gunshots.   

    Officers at the scene originally called it a fatal shooting, but police are now calling this an "active and ongoing death investigation."

    Waterbury police and State troopers are also at the scene and no additional information on how many victims there are or what happened.

    No additional information was immediately available. 

    Check back for updates.



    Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

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    A Hartford church is paying for gas for some Hartford residents today. 

    Mount Olive Church Ministries is offering “free gas on God” at two gas stations in the city. 

    At 1 p.m., they offered gas at the Valero Gas Station at 215 Albany Ave. and gave away $1,600 worth of gas.

    At 4 p.m., they are offering gas at Noble Gas Station, at 3250 Main St. 

    The first 75 Hartford residents who pull up to the pumps will receive a Free Gas on God payment of up to $20. 

    Rev. Dion J. Watkins, Senior Pastor and Mount Olive Church Ministries said he wanted to aid the community at large as God directs our path. 



    Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com

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    A former New Britain math teacher faces sexual assault charges after police said he had inappropriate contact with a high school student.

    Kelsey Cabral, 33, of Kerin Drive in New Britain, was arrested Tuesday and charged with risk of injury to children by sexual contact, fourth-degree sexual assault, risk of injury to children by impairing morals, tampering with a witness and criminal attempt to tamper with evidence, according to police.

    Police said Cabral taught math at Slade Middle School.

    Carbal was suspended immediately after another student reported an alleged inappropriate relationship to school administrators in May, according to police.

    During the suspension, Carbal, who had worked for the district for ten years, resigned, police said. 

    “Our criminal investigation began immediately it involves collecting some data the serving of search warrants evidence collected during those processes linked the suspect to our victim,” New Britain police Capt. Thomas Steck said.

    Consolidated School District of New Britain Superintendent Nancy Sarra released a statement which read in part:

    "The truth along with the safety of our children are our top priorities within the Consolidated School District of New Britain."

    Police said there is no indication that any other students were involved. Cabral was released on a $250,000 bond and is due back in court on Aug. 4.



    Photo Credit: New Britain Police Department

    Kelsey Cabral, 33, is accused of having an inappropriate relationship with a student.Kelsey Cabral, 33, is accused of having an inappropriate relationship with a student.

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    The Connecticut Humane Society partnered with the Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut and St. Vincent de Paul Place for a free pet wellness clinic Wednesday in Norwich.

    "It is enabling us to help pet owners who can't have access or don't have access to pet health care to come get some free services," says Theresa Geary, Director of Operations, Connecticut Humane Society.

    All of the pet services are provided by in house veterinarians from the Humane Society at no cost to the owner.

    "So we will examine these animals, we will do some nail trimming, some basic you know mat grooming if we need to," says Geary. "But really we're wanting a veterinarian to get their hands on these animals, often it's the first time, and they’re going to look for heart worm testing, we're going to look for flea and tic problems, and we really want to make sure these guys are in good health."

    Something the Connecticut Humane Society places a strong emphasis on.

    "It's really important if we take a pet into our home that we're providing for them what they deserve," says Alicia Wright, Coordinator at the Connecticut Humane Society. "What they need, what they want as we would for our own children or other members of our family."

    This was the 4th clinic held at the William A. Buckingham Memorial Building in Norwich, with the intention to complete 6 clinics funded by multiple grants. Appointments are first come first serve, and they are hoping to serve around 40 pets with the estimated cost for these services being roughly $260. 

    "It's a great opportunity for us to connect with the community and work with them by keeping those pets in their home instead of bringing them into a shelter so it's a great, great event for us," explains Wright.


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    A two-alarm fire at a three-story building in New Britain displaced 12 people on Wednesday, fire officials said. 

    Firefighters responded to 112 Wilcox Street just before 3:30 p.m., found heavy fire on the back porches and extinguished the blaze in around half an hour.

    All three apartments were occupied when the fire started, but no one was injured. 

    New Britain officials said the fire appears to have started on an upper-level back porch and rear porches sustained heavy damage, firefighters said. 

    The cause of the fire is under investigation.

     [[387678251, C]]



    Photo Credit: NBCConnecticut.com
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    Southwest Airline delays continued Thursday morning after flights were grounded nationwide Wednesday, leaving passengers stranded at U.S. airports, while the airline worked to fix a computer glitch.

    A company spokesman tells NBC Chicago that systems were gradually coming back online, but the website remained down several hours after the issues began at about 2 p.m. CT.

    In a tweet Wednesday evening, the airline said it would be offering "flexible accommodations for rebooking your travel" once its systems resumed "full functionality." 

    Earlier, Southwest said in a statement that a temporary ground stop was put in place Wednesday for flights that had not left the gate as the company dealt with issues on "multiple technology systems as a result of an outage."

    Southwest said in the statement: "We are now managing flight delays across our system, with a temporary ground stop in place for those flights that have not left the gate. We apologize to our Customers whose travel plans are impacted."

    The website remained down as of 7:30 p.m. ET. The airline did not say what systems were down, but indicated a team was getting systems back online.

    "We are aware and investigating current issues with our systems. We will keep you posted as we have more information to share," Southwest's official Twitter account said at first, as many on Twitter expressed bewilderment at unexplained flight delays.

    "Functionality continues to experience intermittent performance issues and we have some manual systems in place," a representative said Wednesday evening.

    A spokeswoman for the Norm Mineta San Jose Airport said that a computer issue caused Southwest flights to be grounded until the problem is fixed.

    Officials at Philadelphia International Airport said the issue was expected to persist throughout Wednesday evening. Ten flights scheduled to depart through 7:40 p.m. were not able to take off.

    NBC Bay Area's John Zuchelli contributed to this report.




    Photo Credit: Chopper 5
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    Southwest Airlines planes on the ground at Dallas Love Field, the airport reported the flights were grounded for about 45 minutes Wednesday due to equipment problems.Southwest Airlines planes on the ground at Dallas Love Field, the airport reported the flights were grounded for about 45 minutes Wednesday due to equipment problems.

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    Rep. Mark Takai, a first-term Democrat from Hawaii, died Wednesday of pancreatic cancer.

    Takai, 49, died at home surrounded by his family. He announced in May that he would not seek re-election.

    Born on Oahu, Takai served in the state House of Representatives for 20 years before he was elected to Congress, first winning his statehouse seat at age 27. He served as a longtime lieutenant colonel in the Hawaii Army National Guard for more than a decade. In Congress, he sat on the Armed Services and Natural Resources committees.

    Takai was first diagnosed with cancer in October and initially expressed optimism that he would recover. But in May he announced the cancer had spread.

    "The Takai family thanks the people of Hawaii for their support during this difficult time," said a release by his office. His family requested privacy.

    Takai is survived by his wife, Sami, and two young children.



    Photo Credit: AP, File

    This Nov. 4, 2014, file photo shows then-Hawaii State Rep. Mark Takai doing some last minute campaigning for Congress on election day in Honolulu. Takai was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer last year and died on Wednesday, July 20, 2016.This Nov. 4, 2014, file photo shows then-Hawaii State Rep. Mark Takai doing some last minute campaigning for Congress on election day in Honolulu. Takai was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer last year and died on Wednesday, July 20, 2016.

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    Clinton police are looking to identify two shoplifting suspects.

    Police said on July 1 two suspects entered the Clinton AT&T store on Glenwood Road. One suspect distracted the clerk while the second swiped items off a shelf and hid them in his pants, according to police.

    The suspects made off with four Fitbit devices valued around $700, police said.

    The first suspect was described as male, around 30 years old, heavy set with a full beard. He was wearing a red baseballs style cap and a grey hooded, lightweight shirt.

    The second suspect is described as male, around 30 years old with a thinner build. He was wearing a baseball style cap and a black jersey-type shirt.

    Anyone with information should contact Ofc. Matt Reed at (860) 669-0451.



    Photo Credit: Clinton Police Department

    Police said the two suspects pictured above made off with four Fitbits valued around $700.Police said the two suspects pictured above made off with four Fitbits valued around $700.

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    A home care worker is accused of stealing her charge’s bank card and using it to make unauthorized purchases.

    Southington police said Latoya Credle, 27, of Ansonia, turned herself in Tuesday after learning of a warrant for her arrest.

    Police said Credle was employed by the victim as a person caretaker. According to police, Credle took the victim’s bank debit card and make unauthorized purchases totaling $1,131.81.

    Police also said there were two “super check advances” from a credit account in the victim’s name. The victim told police she had no knowledge of the account and never had a credit card or checks issued. The check advances totaled $1700.

    Credle faces charges of 4th-degree larceny, credit card theft, criminal impersonation and illegal use of a credit card. She was released on a $2,500 bond and expected in Bristol Superior Court on August 1.



    Photo Credit: Southington Police Department

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    A Connecticut woman’s social media response to a Playboy playmate 's photo of a naked woman in a gym locker on her Snapchat has gotten popular. 

    Last week, Dani Mathers, posted a selfie in a gym locker with a naked woman in the background.

    The former Playboy Playmate of the Year can be seen in the photo with one hand over her mouth as if to stifle a laugh accompanied by a caption that reads, "If I can't unsee this then you can't either." 

    Nicole Henry, of Hebron, said she couldn’t ‘unsee’ Mathers' post.

    “I was upset," Henry said. "I was mad. I was like, 'why would you do that to another human being?'"

    After seeing the post, the kindergarten teacher was compelled to post a photo of herself in a bikini. 

    "My body has rolls," the Facebook caption reads, in part. "This body may be fat, but it’s volunteered at the local children’s hospital and worked at many day care centers taking care of kids of all ages."

    Henry's message for the post, that's been shared hundreds of times, is for people to love themselves, no matter what shape or size. 

    "I want people to understand that they should love themselves and it’s okay to like yourself," Henry said. 

    Mathers has since posted an apology video on her Snapchat and appears to have deleted all of her social media accounts.

    Los Angeles Police said they were investigating the Playboy model for allegedly "illegally distributing" the photo. 



    Photo Credit: Facebook/Nicole Henry
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    Two water fight events in London, prompted on social media in the midst of a 90-degree heatwave in the U.K., ended in chaos with five people being stabbed, NBC News reported.

    London's Metropolitan Police said "our officers came under attack" from bottles and other objects in the capital's Hyde Park after they attempted to negotiate with a group attempting to set up stereo equipment.

    The chaos lasted almost four hours — from 8:40 p.m. to 2:20 a.m. local time (3:40 p.m. to 9:20 p.m. ET) — with police using riot shields and horses to push the more than 2,000 people out of the park.

    Two 16-year-old boys were also stabbed at another water fight in the city's Burgess Park, police said, where 500 people gathered. Neither suffered life-threatening injuries.

    Meanwhile, a British solider died while on a training exercise in the sweltering temperatures.



    Photo Credit: AP
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    Two women sunbathe in Hyde Park in London on Tuesday July 19, 2016. Temperatures soared today and are expected to reach 35ºC around 95 Fahrenheit on the hottest recorded day of the year.Two women sunbathe in Hyde Park in London on Tuesday July 19, 2016. Temperatures soared today and are expected to reach 35ºC around 95 Fahrenheit on the hottest recorded day of the year.

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