New sexual abuse allegations are roiling Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the Supreme Court.
Another accusation. Another denial. Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination for the Supreme Court is in further disarray after a graphic new allegation of sexual misconduct when he was a freshman at Yale. The White House distributed a vehement denial from Kavanaugh and denounced the accusation from Deborah Ramirez, published in the New Yorker, as a Democratic-inspired effort to “tear down a good man.” Republican Sen. Charles E. Grassley said the Senate Judiciary Committee would “attempt to evaluate these new claims”; Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein called for an immediate postponement of confirmation proceedings until the FBI could investigate. Meanwhile, professor Christine Blasey Ford, who accuses Kavanaugh of sexual assault when both were teenagers, and the nominee are scheduled to testify before senators Thursday.
Year of the Woman, 2018?
As if the November midterm election wasn’t fraught enough, how Republicans are handling the Kavanaugh accusations has made it more so. The GOP push to install him on the Supreme Court before Nov. 6 has risked further alienating female voters already put off by President Trump and his party. An NBC News-Wall Street Journal poll found that women want Democrats to control Congress by 58% to 33%. In California, suburban women will play a key role in at least half a dozen races that could flip seats held by the GOP, including in the contest between Republican incumbent Rep. Steve Knight and Democratic challenger Katie Hill.
Trump is back in New York for the United Nations General Assembly. In his debut at the gathering of world leaders last year, Trump unleashed some verbal fire and fury, by threatening to “totally destroy” North Korea and blasting “loser terrorists.” This week, expect more tough talk on Iran and self-praise for talks with Kim Jong Un, U.S. trade protectionism and victories against Islamic State. His audience, though, may be a bit more jaded, having had a year to size up Trump’s bluster and find ways to work with or around him.
Rising and Falling With the 1%
Californians are just over six weeks away from electing their next governor. A new L.A. Times series is taking a look at the biggest issues John Cox or Gavin Newsom will face. First up: the economy and taxes. Did you know that nearly 70% of California’s revenue comes from personal income tax? And that the top 1% of filers paid out nearly 46% of income tax revenue? This top-heavy approach has its dangers, especially if the economy goes south. We asked Cox and Newsom what should be done — and we’re asking you too.
On Instagram, the waterfalls and swimming holes of Angeles National Forest look amazing. In real life, even more so — except for the broken bones that can result. Officials in Southern California say rescues in nature areas have increased dramatically in recent years as people visit the spots they see on social media and sometimes try to create their own like-worthy posts by engaging in risky behavior, like diving into a rock pool. See the video — ouch!
-- A Times analysis of complaints against police reported to the California Department of Justice shows law enforcement agencies across the state upheld 8.4% of complaints filed by members of the public from 2008 to 2017.
Kermit the Frog. Fozzie Bear. Big Bird. Jim Henson, who was born on this date in 1936, created the Muppets for children growing up in an increasingly troubled era. When he died unexpectedly in 1990, he left behind a legacy that endures today.
-- Forests in Brazil and Peru hold some of the world’s last remote indigenous groups. Now they are increasingly threatened by outsiders. (National Geographic)
-- When family members turn against each other over politics — on video. (Vox)
ONLY IN L.A.
When Deborah L. English was growing up, she had a passion for art, but her family didn’t have much money. So at roughly age 10, she started a business painting snowflakes, trees and elves on windows for Christmas. She’d go on to run her own multimillion-dollar firm designing the look of stores for food retail giants such as Whole Foods.