Review Category : Top Stories

Your Member of Congress Could Be a Taylor Swift Fan

ABC/Richard Harbaugh(WASHINGTON) — Nothing brings Congress together like Taylor Swift.

Members are holding at least 19 fundraisers around the pop star’s two Washington, D.C. concerts in mid-July, according to the Sunlight Foundation, which tracks political fundraising.

While tickets can be found on Swift’s website for about $180, members are asking supporters for as much as $5,000 in political contributions in exchange for concert seats at Nationals Park on July 13 and 14.

“With so much competition for time and money, politicians are always looking for new and creative ways to fund-raise,” said Jenn Topper, a spokesperson for the Sunlight Foundation.

Swift has been a major draw for politicians since 2010, Topper said, citing the nonprofit’s data. But members traditionally take advantage of any well-known musician in town — from Bruce Springsteen, to the Jonas Brothers.

While both Republicans and Democrats in Congress have plans for Swift’s shows, the 25-year-old singer has kept her own political affiliation ambiguous.

Swift voted for the first time in 2008, and told People Magazine she said she “went with her gut instinct” in the voting booth.

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Scoreboard Roundup — 6/30/15

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — INTERLEAGUE
Pittsburgh 5, Detroit 4, 14 Innings
Minnesota 8, Cincinnati 5
Chi White Sox 2, St. Louis 1, 11 Innings
Colorado 2, Oakland 1
Seattle 5, San Diego 1

AMERICAN LEAGUE

Texas 8, Baltimore 6
Boston 4, Toronto 3
Cleveland 6, Tampa Bay 2
Houston 4, Kansas City 0
L.A. Angels 2, N-Y Yankees 1

NATIONAL LEAGUE

Chi Cubs 1, N-Y Mets 0
Miami 5, San Francisco 3
Washington 6, Atlanta 1
Milwaukee 4, Philadelphia 3
L.A. Dodgers 6, Arizona 4

WOMEN’S WORLD CUP

USA 2, Germany 0

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DOJ Report Cites Law Enforcement Shortcomings in Ferguson Unrest

Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — A report commissioner by the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services, a part of the Justice Department, found that multiple shortcomings on the part of law enforcement contributed to the violent riots in Ferguson, Missouri last year.

The report has been disseminated to certain agencies, but the final version won’t be released for a few weeks. The draft version of the report, obtained by ABC News, included 42 findings related to law enforcement’s reaction to the initial protests.

Among the findings were that inconsistent training and different policing philosophies contributed to poor incident command and management, that the Ferguson Police Department and the St. Louis County Police Department used only immediate tactical responses do to the mistaken belief that riots would be “short-lived,” and that use of canine units “unnecessarily [incited] fear and anger among amassing crowds.”

The report also cited military-style uniforms, equipment, weapons and armored vehicles used by law enforcement that “produced a negative public reaction.”

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Pilots Fired for Letting Playboy Model Take Mid-Flight Pictures in Cockpit

NELSON ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — An Argentinian airline has fired two pilots after they were pictured taking selfies with a Playboy model in the cockpit mid-flight, the airline said.

Model Viky Xipolitakis posted photos to her Twitter account showing her posing between two smiling pilots with the cockpit controls behind them.

In video obtained by Argentinian news program Telenoche and shared with ABC News, one of the pilots is seen explaining how various controls work to the model, who appears to be the one taking the video.

She has since apologized via social media but that has not helped save either pilot’s job.

Patricio Zocchi Molina and Federico Matias Soaje were fired by Aerolineas Argentinas on June 25, three days after the flight in question, though that may not be the end of their punishment.

“Also criminal proceedings against the above-named and against the passenger involved will be initiated under Article 190 of the penal code for putting the flight’s safety at risk,” the Argentinean airline said in a statement.

For her part, Xipolitakis has not taken down the pictures from her Twitter post on the evening of June 24, but has added several statements in Spanish relating to the incident.

“I sincerely and wholeheartedly did not imagine I could cause this much damage,” she wrote in one of the posts.

“With respect to the extraordinary flight, being there was an unforgettable and beautiful experience, I never thought there would be this much fuss,” she wrote in Spanish.

The airline, which referred to her only as “the passenger,” stated that she will be banned from both Aerolineas and Austral flights for the next five years.

The Federal Aviation Administration has no jurisdiction in this matter, since the airline in question is an Argentinian company that handles domestic flights in Argentina, but the agency does have specific rules when it comes to pilots using handheld devices.

Commercial pilots are not allowed to use personal wireless devices “while at their duty station” and it is only allowed if “directly related to operation of the aircraft, or for emergency, safety-related, or employment-related communications,” according to the FAA regulations. That said, these rules do not apply to anyone occupying the jumpseat.

“The FAA is unaware of incidents of pilots violating the regulation,” a FAA spokesman said in a statement to ABC News, referring to carriers over which the agency has jurisdiction.

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Pilots Fired for Letting Playboy Model Take Mid-Flight Pictures in Cockpit

NELSON ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — An Argentinian airline has fired two pilots after they were pictured taking selfies with a Playboy model in the cockpit mid-flight, the airline said.

Model Viky Xipolitakis posted photos to her Twitter account showing her posing between two smiling pilots with the cockpit controls behind them.

In video obtained by Argentinian news program Telenoche and shared with ABC News, one of the pilots is seen explaining how various controls work to the model, who appears to be the one taking the video.

She has since apologized via social media but that has not helped save either pilot’s job.

Patricio Zocchi Molina and Federico Matias Soaje were fired by Aerolineas Argentinas on June 25, three days after the flight in question, though that may not be the end of their punishment.

“Also criminal proceedings against the above-named and against the passenger involved will be initiated under Article 190 of the penal code for putting the flight’s safety at risk,” the Argentinean airline said in a statement.

For her part, Xipolitakis has not taken down the pictures from her Twitter post on the evening of June 24, but has added several statements in Spanish relating to the incident.

“I sincerely and wholeheartedly did not imagine I could cause this much damage,” she wrote in one of the posts.

“With respect to the extraordinary flight, being there was an unforgettable and beautiful experience, I never thought there would be this much fuss,” she wrote in Spanish.

The airline, which referred to her only as “the passenger,” stated that she will be banned from both Aerolineas and Austral flights for the next five years.

The Federal Aviation Administration has no jurisdiction in this matter, since the airline in question is an Argentinian company that handles domestic flights in Argentina, but the agency does have specific rules when it comes to pilots using handheld devices.

Commercial pilots are not allowed to use personal wireless devices “while at their duty station” and it is only allowed if “directly related to operation of the aircraft, or for emergency, safety-related, or employment-related communications,” according to the FAA regulations. That said, these rules do not apply to anyone occupying the jumpseat.

“The FAA is unaware of incidents of pilots violating the regulation,” a FAA spokesman said in a statement to ABC News, referring to carriers over which the agency has jurisdiction.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Jeremy Renner Addresses Sexual Preference Rumors

Peter Kramer/NBC(NEW YORK) — Jeremy Renner recently responded to rumors about his sexual preference. So is he or isn’t he?

“I’m not going to try to prove what I am or am not,” the Avengers star told Playboy magazine. “It’s silly, right? When you Google yourself and the first thing that comes up is ‘Jeremy Renner gay,’ it’s like, ‘Oh, now you’ve arrived. You’re now a giant star.'”

He continued, “I don’t care, ultimately, if that’s what people want to think, read and care about. F***ing say whatever the hell you want about me. Look at where we’re at socially — leaps and bounds ahead of where we started. That’s an amazing thing. To suggest that it’s negative, that being gay is a terrible thing, a perversion or whatever — I just don’t get it.”

When the conversation turned to family, Renner talked about the home he’s in now and his plans for his beloved daughter Ava, 2.

“This will be my daughter’s place in the future,” he said. “I own it now, but Ava owns me. When she drew her first breath and with that palmar reflex grabbed my finger, the thought came to me, if all goes well, this same scenario will happen when I take my last breath.”

With his daughter and his love for her in mind, Renner also opened up about the struggles of his ongoing divorce from ex Sonni Pacheco. The two announced they were married late last year, but the two split months later. Divorce proceedings began earlier this year.

“I haven’t slept more than four hours a night in the past week,” he revealed. “My skin’s breaking out. I’ve got dark circles under my eyes. I’m dehydrated. I look like s**t. I felt pretty insecure walking into a photo shoot this morning, and I was running late because I had just gotten out of my fourth deposition for the divorce.”

The Oscar-nominated actor’s parents also split when he was just in third grade and his situation contributed to the man he is today. “They didn’t have a lot of money, and after the divorce, we moved around a lot. Up until junior high, I thought a new grade meant a new school for everybody,” he said, adding that may be what spawned his “shyness.”

Renner won’t be acting shy, however, when he stars in his next film, Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation, out July 31.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Jeremy Renner Addresses Sexual Preference Rumors

Peter Kramer/NBC(NEW YORK) — Jeremy Renner recently responded to rumors about his sexual preference. So is he or isn’t he?

“I’m not going to try to prove what I am or am not,” the Avengers star told Playboy magazine. “It’s silly, right? When you Google yourself and the first thing that comes up is ‘Jeremy Renner gay,’ it’s like, ‘Oh, now you’ve arrived. You’re now a giant star.'”

He continued, “I don’t care, ultimately, if that’s what people want to think, read and care about. F***ing say whatever the hell you want about me. Look at where we’re at socially — leaps and bounds ahead of where we started. That’s an amazing thing. To suggest that it’s negative, that being gay is a terrible thing, a perversion or whatever — I just don’t get it.”

When the conversation turned to family, Renner talked about the home he’s in now and his plans for his beloved daughter Ava, 2.

“This will be my daughter’s place in the future,” he said. “I own it now, but Ava owns me. When she drew her first breath and with that palmar reflex grabbed my finger, the thought came to me, if all goes well, this same scenario will happen when I take my last breath.”

With his daughter and his love for her in mind, Renner also opened up about the struggles of his ongoing divorce from ex Sonni Pacheco. The two announced they were married late last year, but the two split months later. Divorce proceedings began earlier this year.

“I haven’t slept more than four hours a night in the past week,” he revealed. “My skin’s breaking out. I’ve got dark circles under my eyes. I’m dehydrated. I look like s**t. I felt pretty insecure walking into a photo shoot this morning, and I was running late because I had just gotten out of my fourth deposition for the divorce.”

The Oscar-nominated actor’s parents also split when he was just in third grade and his situation contributed to the man he is today. “They didn’t have a lot of money, and after the divorce, we moved around a lot. Up until junior high, I thought a new grade meant a new school for everybody,” he said, adding that may be what spawned his “shyness.”

Renner won’t be acting shy, however, when he stars in his next film, Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation, out July 31.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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DOJ Report Cites Law Enforcement Shortcomings in Ferguson Unrest

Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — A report commissioner by the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services, a part of the Justice Department, found that multiple shortcomings on the part of law enforcement contributed to the violent riots in Ferguson, Missouri last year.

The report has been disseminated to certain agencies, but the final version won’t be released for a few weeks. The draft version of the report, obtained by ABC News, included 42 findings related to law enforcement’s reaction to the initial protests.

Among the findings were that inconsistent training and different policing philosophies contributed to poor incident command and management, that the Ferguson Police Department and the St. Louis County Police Department used only immediate tactical responses do to the mistaken belief that riots would be “short-lived,” and that use of canine units “unnecessarily [incited] fear and anger among amassing crowds.”

The report also cited military-style uniforms, equipment, weapons and armored vehicles used by law enforcement that “produced a negative public reaction.”

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Greece Defaults on IMF Loan

BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images(ATHENS) — Greece officially defaulted on its debt on Tuesday night after it was unable to pay back about 1.6 billion Euros to the International Monetary Fund.

The IMF said that Greece “is now in arrears and can only receive IMF financing once the arrears are cleared.” The deadline for Greece to pay back their debt expired at 6pm ET Tuesday.

The IMF confirmed that they had received a request from Greek authorities Tuesday to extend the deadline to repay debt. That request will be sent to the IMF Executive Board.

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Donna Karan Steps Down as Chief Designer for DKNY

Photo by Chance Yeh/FilmMagic(NEW YORK) — Fashion designer Donna Karan has made a personal decision to step down as chief designer for Donna Karen New York (DKYN), the New York-based international fashion house announced Tuesday.

Karan, who spent the last three decades revolutionizing “the working woman’s wardrobe” for DKNY, will now be taking on an advisory role to focus on her Urban Zen Company and foundation, which she founded in 2007, DKNY announced on social media.

Urban Zen, a nonprofit organization committed to improving the healing and treatment experience for patients and families, was founded after Karan said she was disappointed by the health care her husband received while undergoing treatment for lung cancer, she said in a previous interview with Stand Up to Cancer.

“Over the past three decades, Donna Karan has inspired women around the world to embrace their power and sensuality,” DKNY said. “Donna Karan is an icon, visionary designer and a passionate philanthropist. She believes in dressing and addressing women. Her impact on American fashion has been extraordinary and she will continue to influence and inspire for years to come.”

“We honor Donna today and always,” DKNY added. “We look forward to celebrating her past, present and future in her memoir, which is due out in October 2015.”

Karan, 66, co-founded the company with her late husband, Stephen Weiss, and Takiyho Inc. in 1984. It went public in 1996, and in 2001, LVMH Moet Hennessey Louis Vuitton invested and helped grow DKNY into Donna Karan International.

It was not immediately clear who would be replacing Karan as chief designer for DKNY.

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