Your Wednesday Evening News Briefing: Apple, Hurricane Florence, CBS

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Your Wednesday Evening News Briefing: Apple, Hurricane Florence, CBS

By Joumana Khatib and Marcus Payadue

  • Sept. 12, 2018

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Good evening. Here’s the latest.

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CreditNick Cote for The New York Times

1. A crackdown on e-cigarettes.

The F.D.A. warned that teenagers’ use of e-cigarettes had reached an “epidemic proportion.” It gave Juul and other manufacturers 60 days to prove that they could keep their products away from minors or face a ban.

The agency also said it was sending warning letters to 1,100 retailers — including 7-Eleven stores, Walgreens stores, Circle K convenience shops and Shell gas stations — for selling e-cigarettes to minors.

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CreditLuke Sharrett for The New York Times

2. Hurricane Florence watch:

Three million people in North and South Carolina stand to lose power and could be without it “for a very long time,” the head of the region’s main electric utility said.

The storm is charging toward the Carolinas and is expected to make landfall early Friday. Above, a woman in Myrtle Beach, S.C., preparing for Florence.

Once it is ashore, Florence’s drenching rains may cause “catastrophic flash flooding and significant river flooding” over a wide area of the Carolinas and the Mid-Atlantic states, the National Hurricane Center said. Some spots on the coast could receive as much as 40 inches of rain.

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CreditJim Wilson/The New York Times

3. Apple unveiled a new entry-level iPhone as well as its biggest, and most expensive, phone yet, the iPhone XS Max.

Apple’s next operating system, iOS 12, would be available Sept. 17, the company said. The update includes the Screen Time feature for limiting how long people spend on their phones.

The company also introduced a fourth-generation Apple Watch with a larger screen and an F.D.A.-approved heart monitor.

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CreditSpencer Platt/Getty Images

4. After three decades of denial, the Vatican is being forced address the sexual abuse scandal as a global crisis.

Pope Francis, whose leadership has been shaken by accusations of churchwide cover-up, has summoned bishops from around the world for an unprecedented meeting, set for February. The subject: to discuss how to protect children.

And Cardinal Donald Wuerl, the Roman Catholic archbishop of Washington who has been accused of mismanaging cases of abuse, sent a letter informing his priests that he planned to discuss whether to resign with Francis in Rome.

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CreditBrad Barket/Getty Images for Peabody

5. Jeff Fager, the executive producer of “60 Minutes,” is out at CBS, the network said. Officials cited a breach of company policy.

His firing comes just days after the ouster of Les Moonves, the longtime CBS chief, after a dozen women accused him of misconduct.

In articles in The New Yorker and The Washington Post, Mr. Fager had been accused of touching women at company parties in ways that made them feel uncomfortable and fostering a culture of harassment at “60 Minutes.”

CBS’s president told the staff that the departure was “not directly related to the allegations surfaced in press reports, which continue to be investigated independently.” Mr. Fager has denied any wrongdoing.

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    CreditJohn Moore/Getty Images

    6. The detention of migrant children has jumped to its highest levels ever, The Times found.

    The huge increases, which have placed the federal shelter system near capacity, are a result not of an influx of children entering the country, but a reduction in the number being released to live with families and other sponsors, the data suggests.

    Separately, nearly $10 million was diverted from FEMA to pay for immigration detention centers at the start of the current hurricane season that began in June, according to a budget document released late Tuesday.

    The transfer was a part of more than $200 million the Department of Homeland Security moved from the budgets of other agencies to ICE’s detention and removals.

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    CreditRoss Mantle for The New York Times

    7. Household incomes increased for the third straight year, the Census Bureau said, returning to roughly the levels before the 2008 recession.

    Now, 10 years after the financial collapse, things are eerily calm. The economy, by nearly any official measure, is robust. But the uneven nature of the recovery has compounded a long-term imbalance in the accumulation of wealth, which now comes largely from investment portfolios, not salaries.

    Find all our special coverage about where we stand after the 2008 recession here. Above, a view of Las Vegas. The middle class there is still getting squeezed.

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    CreditSteven Senne/Associated Press

    8. Voters in Rhode Island head to the polls today. One thing to watch: Gov. Gina Raimondo, above, faces a challenge in the Democratic primary from Matt Brown. We’ll have live results this evening.

    And in races across the nation, voters and candidates are warming to a new sight on the campaign trail: children. Many politicians argue that motherhood not only doesn’t disqualify them, it also makes them more qualified. And from bridges to bagels, New York’s sometimes bizarre Democratic primary for governor comes to a close.

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    CreditBill Ingalls/NASA

    9. A mission to Mars, brought to you by … Budweiser?

    With NASA’s budget flattening, the agency’s administrator is considering ways to generate funding.

    “Is it possible for NASA to offset some of its costs by selling the naming rights to its spacecraft?” he wondered at a recent meeting.

    While sponsorships would most likely provide only modest financial help to the space agency, the administrator imagined it could help raise the awareness of NASA’s missions among the public and help spur children to pursue careers in space. He’s asked a committee to review the ethical considerations.

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    CreditAgence France-Presse — Getty Images

    10. Finally, a glimmer of good news: The Ethiopia-Eritrea border is open for the first time in 20 years.

    Long-separated families held tearful reunions. People from both sides ran toward one another as the border crossings opened, hugging, kissing and crying as if in a coordinated act.

    “There wasn’t any day that went by that I didn’t think of my mother,” one man from a border town said, choking up. “I never thought this day would come.”

    Have a wonderful evening.

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