Review Category : National News

Michigan Governor Tweets Up a Storm After Debate Calls to Resign

Bill Pugliano/Getty Images(LANSING, Mich.) — Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder took to Twitter Monday to defend himself against accusations that he mishandled the Flint water crisis, after both Democratic presidential candidates called for his resignation in Sunday night’s debate.

This was never about money. This was a failure of government at all levels that could be described as a massive error of bureaucracy.

— Governor Rick Snyder (@onetoughnerd) March 7, 2016

I’ve proposed more than $230 million in additional aid for Flint, and have already delivered $70 million #FlintFWD

— Governor Rick Snyder (@onetoughnerd) March 7, 2016

In a few days, political candidates will be leaving Flint and Michigan.

— Governor Rick Snyder (@onetoughnerd) March 7, 2016

They will not be staying to help solve the crisis, but I am committed to the people of Flint.

— Governor Rick Snyder (@onetoughnerd) March 7, 2016

It was former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s first call for Snyder’s resignation, joining Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, who had already done so.

“I agree the governor should resign or be recalled, and we should support the efforts of citizens attempting to achieve that,” Clinton said at the candidates’ debate in the city of Flint.

Sanders reiterated his call for the same, calling the Republican governor’s response to the crisis a “dereliction of duty.”

Snyder has said he has no plans to step down.

Clinton also said she supports efforts by Michigan’s members of Congress to allocate federal money to the Flint response.

A Senate amendment, included in a larger energy bill, would grant $250 million to the crisis but has been held up by at least one senator — Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah — who said in a statement Friday that “federal aid is not needed at this time” for Flint and that politicians are using the crisis to “funnel taxpayer money to their own home states.”

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Total Solar Eclipse: How to Watch Spectacle No Matter Where You Are

Romeo Durscher/NASA(NEW YORK) — Get ready for a total solar eclipse when the moon obscures the sun, darkening the skies and casting a spectacular shadow.

The bad news: Chances are you’re one of the billions of people who won’t have a front-row seat to the spectacle in the sky this week.

A total solar eclipse will be visible to people in parts of southeast Asia, while people in parts of Alaska, Hawaii, Guam and America Samoa will be able to enjoy a partial solar eclipse, according to NASA.

While the moon passes between Earth and the sun every month, the phenomenon of a solar eclipse occurs when the celestial bodies are perfectly aligned, with the moon blocking the sun. The solar eclipse will occur on March 9 in Sumatra, Indonesia, and will then cross the international date line, moving northeast across the Pacific Ocean and ending on the afternoon of March 8 local time just short of Hawaii.

NASA plans to livestream the period of the total eclipse, which is predicted to happen from 8:38 p.m. to 8:42 p.m. ET Tuesday night.

If you’re lucky enough to see it a person, make sure to wear protective eyewear. Under no circumstances should an eclipse be viewed directly through binoculars or a telescope, according to NASA, as the lens could intensify the sun’s rays and injure the viewer’s eyes.

The next solar eclipse that will be visible in the continental United States is set for Aug. 21, 2017, according to NASA.

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Teenager Spotted on Camera Running from Attempted Kidnapper

iStock/Thinkstock(POMPANO BEACH, Fla.) — A 13-year-old girl was caught on surveillance camera running away from a man who allegedly tried to abduct her, police say.

The incident happened in Pompano Beach, Florida. The video shows the teenager running down the sidewalk, with the alleged kidnapper driving an SUV behind her.

Broward Sheriff’s Office police say the man drove up to the girl and asked if she was walking home. The girl allegedly ignored him. Police say the man then jumped out of the car and grabbed the girl by wrist. The young girl pushed back, screaming and running away, according to police.

Police say the incident is “very troubling.”

Experts say the girl did exactly the right thing by screaming and running away.

“The kicking, screaming, yelling, anything that she can do to draw attention to that situation so she can get away…this girl saved her own life,” said Callahan Walsh, a child advocate for the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.

In 2013, an 8-year-old girl bit her would-be kidnapper and got away. Grainy surveillance footage shows her running to get her parents.

Last year, a teenager in Connecticut accepted a ride from a stranger and later jumped out of the moving car, landing on the side of the road.

Experts are telling parents to teach their kids how to be street smart: use the buddy system; walk home with a friend; say “NO” to strangers; and always tell a trusted adult about any unusual or threatening encounters.

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The USS Truman by the Numbers

Department of Defense(NEW YORK) — This Week Co-Anchor and Chief Global Affairs Correspondent, Martha Raddatz, went on board the USS Harry S. Truman, the Navy’s 9th nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, currently located in the Persian Gulf.

Her visit to the massive carrier, which entered the Gulf in December, gave ABC News an exclusive close-up look at the ship that plays such a key role in the fight against ISIS in Iraq and Syria.

The USS Truman has launched over 5,000 aircraft sorties, totaling nearly 13,000 flight hours.

There are more than 70 aircraft that operate off the carrier with the majority being F-18 fighter jets.

The ship’s deployment began on November 16 and is expected to last seven months.

The crew of approximately 5,000 sailors has already traveled nearly 25,000 nautical miles.

Coming in at 1,096 feet, the USS Truman is as long as the Empire State Building is tall. The area of the flight deck alone is 4.5 acres.

The ship weighs 95,000 tons. When operating at top speed, it can exceed 30 knots, or a little over 34 miles per hour.

The USS Truman was commissioned in 1998 and had its maiden deployment on November 28, 2000.

It’s home port is Norfolk, Virginia, approximately 200 miles south of Washington, D.C.

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Father of Kalamazoo Shooting Victim Questions Clinton, Sanders Over Gun Control

Kopf family / Bronson Healthcare Group(FLINT, Mich.) — The father of a teenager critically injured in last month’s shooting spree in Kalamazoo, Michigan questioned Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders over gun control issues during the Democratic debate on Sunday.

“The man who shot everyone including my daughter in Kalamazoo had no mental health issues recorded and a clear background. What do you plan to do to address this serious epidemic?” Gene Kopf asked the two candidates during the debate in Flint, Michigan.

“I don’t want to hear anything about tougher laws for mental health or criminal backgrounds because that doesn’t work,” he added.

The man’s daughter, Abigail, 14, was one of eight victims in the shooting that left six dead including her grandmother. Suspected shooter Jason Dalton, an Uber driver, has been arrested and charged with the murders.

Before the candidates answered his question, Kopf said that his daughter –- whose heart stopped and was on life support after the shooting -– “is now laughing and giggling and has a long road to physical recovery.”

“I am looking at your daughter and I’m very grateful that she is laughing and she is on the road to recovery,” Clinton responded first. She then reiterated her call for comprehensive background checks and closing the online and so-called Charleston loopholes that make it easier for people to buy guns, and criticized Sanders for his vote for a bill that protected gun manufacturers from liability.

Sanders also pledged his support of closing the Charleston loophole, named for the shooting at a church in Charleston, S.C., where the alleged gunman was able to buy guns despite having a felony conviction on his record because the background check took more than 72 hours.

He said the country should “do everything we possibly can to minimize the possibility of these mass killings.”

He has tried to explain that controversial vote of his by saying he wanted to look out for small “mom and pop” gun shops, but tonight he seemed to defend it. He said he did not believe that if a seller sold a product legally they should be held liable, and he argued that if they could be, the implication would be “ending gun manufacturing in America.”

“I don’t agree with that,” he continued.

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Coast Guard Suspends Search for Missing Royal Caribbean Cruise Ship Passenger

iStock/Thinkstock(KEY LARGO, Fla.) — The Coast Guard announced late Sunday it had suspended the search for a man who fell overboard from a Royal Caribbean cruise ship off the coast of Key Largo, Florida.

Search-and-rescue crews searched a total area of 2,583 square nautical miles before the search was called off, the Coast Guard said.

“We want to extend our condolences to the family and friends of Mr. Mossman as the decision to suspend a search is never an easy one to make and is done with great care and deliberation,” said Chris Eddy, search-and-rescue technical specialist at the Coast Guard 7th District. “Unfortunately, despite our best efforts and an exhaustive search, our crews were unable to locate him.”

David Mossman, 46, of Texas, fell overboard the Navigator of the Seas late Friday, said officials with the Coast Guard and Royal Caribbean. The Coast Guard assumed control of the search early Saturday, the cruise line said.

“Royal Caribbean’s Care Team is providing support to the guest’s family and our thoughts and prayers are with them,” Royal Caribbean said in a statement.

Navigator of the Seas then resumed its journey back to Port Everglades, Florida, where it arrived Saturday morning. The ship had departed Port Everglades for the cruise on Feb. 28, the cruise line said.

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Nancy Reagan, Former First Lady, Dies at 94

Joe Raedle/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Nancy Davis Reagan, wife of the late President Ronald Reagan, died Sunday at her home in Los Angeles. She was 94.

The former first lady will perhaps be best remembered for her loyalty to her husband. She became fiercely protective of him after a 1981 assassination attempt, and later stood by him as Alzheimer’s disease overtook him in his last years.

In a 1998 Vanity Fair article, she vocalized this loyalty: “When I say my life began with Ronnie, well, it’s true. It did,” she said.

During her White House years, she sponsored a major drug prevention crusade aimed at children and young adults. She toured the U.S. and other nations as part of her “Just Say No” campaign, traveling almost 250,000 miles.

As the first lady from 1981 to 1989, Reagan endured criticism for bringing high fashion and a lavish lifestyle to the White House in a time of recession. Some critics called her “Queen Nancy.”

After her husband was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in 1994, Reagan became an outspoken advocate for Alzheimer’s research and formed the Ronald & Nancy Reagan Research Institute in Chicago the following year.

Reagan, who died of heart failure, will be buried next to her late husband at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California.

A ‘Painful’ Childhood

Born on July 6, 1921, in New York City, Nancy Reagan was the only child of radio actress Edith Luckett and her husband, Kenneth Robbins, the son of a once-well-to-do family who worked as a car salesman. Robbins was a Princeton graduate, but his daughter’s memoir, “My Turn,” says that he “wasn’t very ambitious.” Nancy’s parents soon separated and divorced.

Nancy’s interest in acting was sparked at an early age, as she went from theater to theater with her mother and enjoyed experimenting with stage clothes and makeup.

But life as a single working mother proved too difficult for Luckett, who sent Nancy to live with her uncle and aunt, Virginia and Audley Galbraith, in Bethesda, Maryland. Though Nancy occasionally visited her mother during stopovers in New York, she later recalled their separation as “a painful period” in her childhood.

In 1929, Luckett quit her acting career to marry a prominent neurosurgeon, Loyal Davis, whom Nancy quickly accepted as a father figure. The family moved to Chicago, where Nancy attended the Girls’ Latin School and took up swimming, dancing and tennis.

She attended Smith College in Massachusetts, where she was a self-described “average student” and regularly performed in campus plays. She graduated in 1943.

She launched her acting career shortly after graduation, billing herself as Nancy Davis. She toured from Detroit to New York City with a non-speaking role in “Ramshackle Inn” before landing a minor spot in the musical “Lute Song,” acting opposite Yul Brynner and Mary Martin in what would be her only Broadway appearance.

After a series of smaller parts, Reagan attracted the attention of MGM Studios and moved to Hollywood to begin work on her first feature film, “The Doctor and the Girl.”

Family Ties

Nancy Reagan’s career in Hollywood included 11 feature films, among them “The Next Voice You Hear,” “Donovan’s Brain” and the Academy Award-nominated documentary, “The Dark Wave.”

While filming “East Side, West Side,” Nancy Davis’s name wrongfully appeared on a published list of alleged communist supporters. She sought assistance from the then-president of the Screen Actors Guild, Ronald Reagan, who met her over dinner.

“I don’t know if it was exactly love at first sight,” Nancy Reagan later said, “but it was pretty close.”

The couple wed on March 4, 1952, in Los Angeles, with actor William Holden and wife Ardis as the only witnesses.

The Reagans starred together in the 1957 World War II film “Hellcats of the Navy” with Nancy playing a Navy nurse and Ronald the commanding officer of a submarine.

While Ronald Reagan continued his film career, Nancy Reagan retired from acting and raised their children, Patti and Ronald Jr., in addition to stepchildren Maureen and Michael from Ronald’s previous marriage to actress Jane Wyman.

“I never was really a career girl,” Reagan said in 1980. “I became an actress because I didn’t want to go back to Chicago and lead the life of a post-debutante. I wanted to do something until I found the man I wanted to marry.”

As host of “General Electric Theatre,” Ronald Reagan gave traveling speeches encouraging smaller government, and began to focus on political issues. By 1962, after years as a Democrat, he had officially changed to the Republican party, and in 1964, after making a fundraising speech at a campaign event for presidential hopeful Sen. Barry Goldwater, R-Arizona, he became the darling of the conservative movement.

He announced his candidacy for governor of California in 1966, and Nancy Reagan found herself thrust into the role of campaigner. Eager to support her husband but wary of speechmaking, Reagan adopted what would become her signature question-and-answer format while making campaign appearances. Ronald Reagan won the election in a landslide.

The Golden State Gets a Makeover

As the first lady of California, Nancy Reagan did not find the governor’s residence — an old Victorian mansion in Sacramento — to be up to standard. Her first order of business was to move the family to a 12-room Tudor home in the suburbs, citing concerns for her children’s safety.

“That house was so depressing that I just couldn’t stand the thought of living there,” Reagan later wrote in her memoir. “It was a tinderbox, its wooden frame eaten through by dry rot.”

The move brought her stiff criticism. One People magazine contributor dubbed her “imperious.”

During her eight years in Sacramento, the press remained fascinated with Nancy Reagan’s elegance. A 1967 article in Life magazine reported that she flew a private hairdresser from Los Angeles for important events, describing her as “a walking showcase for California fashion designers.”

Through her visits with hospitals and homes for emotionally and physically handicapped children, Reagan became a strong advocate of the Foster Grandparent Program — which pairs senior citizens as mentors to youth with exceptional needs — and worked to promote it throughout the state.

The First Lady and the Refurbishment

Nancy Reagan helped her husband in his unsuccessful 1976 bid for the Republican presidential nomination but later joined him in lending support to the Republican nominee, Gerald R. Ford.

She remained in the public eye after the campaign, being named an honorary chairman of Aid to Adoption of Special Kids in 1977, and consistently topping the Good Housekeeping poll of the most admired women in America.

When Ronald Reagan won the presidency in 1980, Nancy found the public spotlight could be harsh. After reportedly spending $25,000 for a James Galanos ball gown for her husband’s inauguration, she solicited more than $800,000 in private donations for a refurbishment of the second- and third-floor living quarters of the White House, later purchasing new White House china at nearly $1,000 per setting.

The spending — in addition to her accepting free designer clothing and attending the wedding of England’s Prince Charles and Princess Diana in 1981 — earned Reagan quick criticism. A 1981 Newsweek poll found that 62 percent of Americans thought she was too focused on style for a period of economic downturn, while a Washington Post column dubbed her “a symbol of the uncaring rich, a Barbie doll with an attitude.”

“Virtually everything I did during that first year was misunderstood and ridiculed,” she later wrote in her autobiography. “While I loved being first lady, my eight years with that title were the most difficult years of my life.”

Though Reagan continued to support the Foster Grandparents program as first lady, perhaps her most notable efforts were in promoting drug education and prevention programs. She toured the U.S. and nine countries as part of her anti-drug abuse “Just Say No” campaign.

In 1985, she hosted first ladies from 17 nations at the White House for a conference on youth drug abuse.

The anti-drug movement was influential in passage of the 1986 National Crusade for a Drug-Free America anti-drug abuse law. Through her platform, Reagan became the first first lady to address the U.N. General Assembly in 1988 when she spoke in on international drug trafficking laws.

The President’s Caretaker

Following the shooting of her husband on March 30, 1981, Nancy Reagan’s role as a first lady shifted to that of the president’s personal protector.

She took it upon herself to know the president’s schedule, including with whom he would be privately meeting. She garnered further negative press after it was made known that she was consulting an astrologer to determine precisely which days and places Ronald should avoid as potential dangers.

Reagan also became increasingly involved with personnel decisions in the administration, having effectively supported the firing of National Security Council Member William P. Clark and the hiring of Secretary of State George Schultz.

Following the president’s colon cancer surgery in 1985, Reagan played a large role in firing chief of staff Donald Regan, who published a critical memoir in response.

But despite her poor reception, Reagan remained committed to her husband’s safety.

“You have to understand, Ronald Reagan was the sun in Nancy’s life, and to see him almost killed was the realization of her worst nightmare” ABC News correspondent Chris Wallace said following the assassination attempt.

Reagan also persuaded her husband to befriend Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev, saying that it made no sense for the leaders to not be engaged in open dialogue. This friendship later led to the 1987 INF Treaty, which about brought mutual destruction of intermediate-range nuclear missiles and was considered a high achievement of the Reagan administration.

She won public sympathy when she was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1987, postponing her mastectomy for a few days because of obligations to her charity work.

When they left the White House in 1989, the Reagans moved to Bel Air, California, where Nancy anticipated a restful retirement, but she again found herself in the public eye when the Internal Revenue Service disclosed that she did not report as income up to $3 million in clothing she had acquired during her tenure as first lady.

During an annual checkup in 1994, Ronald Reagan was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, an incurable condition. Nancy’s role as his caretaker increased, and she rarely left his side as his health worsened.

In addition to her 1980 biography, “Nancy,” she published two books during her husband’s illness: the memoir “My Turn: The Memoirs of Nancy Reagan,” with William Novak in 1989; and in 2000, “I Love You, Ronnie: The Letters of Ronald Reagan to Nancy Reagan.”

The Reagans received the Congressional Gold Medal in 2002 in recognition of their service to the United States, and later that year, President George W. Bush awarded Nancy the Presidential Medal of Freedom for her devotion “to her family and her country,” according to the White House website.

Throughout her husband’s illness, Reagan became an increasing proponent of stem cell research, winning an honor from the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation in 2004.

On June 5, 2004, Ronald Reagan died at age 93, surrounded by Nancy and their children. Six days of national mourning — including a state funeral at the National Cathedral in Washington — followed, and he was buried on the grounds of the Reagan library.

Life After Ronnie

Following a fall at her home in February 2008, Reagan was admitted to St. John’s Health Center in Santa Monica, California. She suffered another fall in October 2008.

But despite the injuries, Reagan continued to promote stem cell research as a potential cure for Alzheimer’s disease.

“We owe it to ourselves and to our children to do everything in our power to find cures for these diseases, and soon,” she wrote in March 2009, praising President Barack Obama, who fought to loosen stem cell restrictions. “As I’ve said before, time is short, and life is precious.”

She attended a June 2, 2009, signing of the Ronald Reagan Centennial Commission Act, which created a commission to honor the 100th anniversary of her husband’s birth in 2011. The following day, she unveiled a bronze statue of Ronald, which now sits in the Capitol rotunda.

It was this love of Ronald for which Nancy will likely be remembered.

“I’ve had quite a life, when you stop and think about it,” she once told a Vanity Fair reporter. “I’m very lucky. Especially with Ronnie — I was the happiest girl in the world when I became we.

“Even in the very beginning, I was always so proud of him. Everything he did,” she said. “And it wasn’t that I had to force myself. I just was.”

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Coast Guard Continues Search for Missing Royal Caribbean Cruise Ship Passenger

iStock/Thinkstock(KEY LARGO, Fla.) — Coast Guard search crews have covered 1,676 square nautical miles as they continued looking for a man who fell overboard from a Royal Caribbean cruise ship off the coast of Key Largo, Florida.

David Mossman, 46, of Texas, fell overboard the Navigator of the Seas late Friday, said officials with the Coast Guard and Royal Caribbean. The Coast Guard assumed control of the search early Saturday, the cruise line said.

“Royal Caribbean’s Care Team is providing support to the guest’s family and our thoughts and prayers are with them,” Royal Caribbean said in a statement.

Navigator of the Seas then resumed its journey back to Port Everglades, Florida, where it arrived Saturday morning. The ship had departed Port Everglades for the cruise on Feb. 28, the cruise line said.

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Maine Man Arrested for Killing Teen Over 35 Years Ago

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — A registered sex offender was arrested in Maine in connection with the murder of a 16-year-old girl more than 35 years ago.

Philip Fournier was taken into custody Friday after being accused in the beating death of 16-year-old Joyce McLain, Maine State Police said. Fournier, 55, of East Millinocket, Maine, was 19 at the time of the girl’s death.

On the evening of Aug. 8, 1980, Joyce left her home to go jogging and her body was found near a high school two days later, police said.

Maine State Police Col. Robert Williams said Friday there wasn’t one particular piece of evidence that led to Fournier’s recent arrest, but instead it was the “accumulation” of work over the years.

It’s unclear how well Fournier knew the victim, Williams said, but police believe the two were acquainted. McLain’s mother expressed her relief after the arrest.

“I was angry off and on all through the time it took,” Pamela McLain told ABC News on Saturday. “I pushed and pushed for different things. I was a mother that wasn’t going to give up and yesterday, I was glad I was that kind of mother.”

Not long after the teen’s body was found in a wooded area near her home, her skull fractured from a blow to the back of her head, authorities interviewed Fournier. He would be interviewed many times in the ensuing 35 years, Williams said, but an arrest never followed.

Fournier allegedly gave differing accounts to authorities and others over the years, Williams said, some of which were self-incriminating.

“One of the reasons the case progressed slowly is we had to work through what he told us various times,” Williams said.

In one 1989 interview, a pastor told police Fournier came to his church one night several years prior and “confessed to him that he had killed Joyce,” according to a criminal affidavit.

The pastor said that after hearing the confession, he asked Fournier’s parents to come to the church, where their son then told his mother “three times that he had killed Joyce,” according to the affidavit.

“Fournier stated he hit McLain in the back of the head,” the pastor said, according to the affidavit, adding, “Fournier stated he tried to have sex with McClain.”

Fournier’s mother was interviewed in 2014 and she recounted the visit with the pastor similarly, saying her son told her, “I killed Joyce McClain.” She added her son began to cry, saying, “I didn’t mean to,” according to the affidavit.

Williams said on Friday that authorities are “finally at the point where we feel we’re confident that we can prove a case beyond a reasonable doubt.”

Fournier was previously convicted of possessing child pornography and is listed as a registered sex offender in Maine. The federal judge who sentenced Fournier in 2009 had urged him to tell authorities anything he knew about McLain’s death, according to The Bangor Daily News.

Fournier was taken to the Penobscot County Jail in Bangor, police said. He has not yet entered a plea and his first court appearance will be Monday. Williams said he did not know if Fournier had an attorney.

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Nancy Reagan, Former First Lady, Dies 94

Chris Carlson-Pool/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Nancy Davis Reagan, wife of the late President Ronald Reagan, has died. She was 94.

The former first lady will perhaps be best remembered for her loyalty to her husband. She became fiercely protective of him after a 1981 assassination attempt, and later stood by him as Alzheimer’s disease overtook him in his last years.

In a 1998 Vanity Fair article, she vocalized this loyalty: “When I say my life began with Ronnie, well, it’s true. It did,” she said.

During her White House years, she sponsored a major drug prevention crusade aimed at children and young adults. She toured the U.S. and other nations as part of her “Just Say No” campaign, traveling almost 250,000 miles.

As the first lady from 1981 to 1989, Reagan endured criticism for bringing high fashion and a lavish lifestyle to the White House in a time of recession. Some critics called her “Queen Nancy.”

After her husband was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in 1994, Reagan became an outspoken advocate for Alzheimer’s research and formed the Ronald & Nancy Reagan Research Institute in Chicago the following year.

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