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Political news from WNPR

Gage Skidmore / Creative Commons

Many Americans were surprised by the results of the presidential election last month. During the early morning hours of November 9, half of America celebrated the ascension of the man (and not the first woman) that championed the needs of Americans who felt betrayed by those in power. The other half feared the election of a man with no experience in government and a stated desire to dismantle much of President Obama’s legacy.

Nancy Eve Cohen / New England Public Radio

In the weeks after Election Day, in response to current events, the U.S. flag on the main flagpole at Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts has alternately been flown at full-staff and half-staff, burned, removed, and now replaced.

Sandy Hook Ride on Washington

The Connecticut Supreme Court will hear an appeal in a case brought by Newtown families against gun maker Remington Arms. The families are arguing that the manufacturer shouldn't have marketed and sold military-style weapons to civilians.

Donald Trump announced in a series of tweets Wednesday that he will be taking himself "completely out" of his business operations to avoid potential conflicts of interest as president. The president-elect did not offer details of the plan or say that he would divest financially from his businesses, but he did promise a news conference in the coming weeks that would address the issue.

Nancy Pelosi beat back her toughest challenge yet to her leadership of Democrats in the House of Representatives, defeating Ohio Rep. Tim Ryan to secure another term as House minority leader.

The California Democrat got 134 votes to Ryan's 63 in a secret ballot vote on Wednesday. Pelosi had boasted going into the vote that she had support from two-thirds of the caucus, and she received just over that amount.

In the past week President-elect Donald Trump has tweeted about Cuba, and the recount funded by the Green Party. He tweeted eleven times about Hillary Clinton and voter fraud, including a controversial tweet in which he claimed that "millions of people voted illegally." Trump re-tweeted a 16-year-old who criticized coverage of CNN, and said people who burn the American flag should face consequences - "perhaps loss of citizenship or a year in jail!" 

President-elect Donald Trump has chosen Wilbur Ross Jr., a billionaire investor and turnaround specialist, as his commerce secretary.

Ross announced his selection Wednesday during a joint CNBC interview with longtime Wall Street banker Steve Mnuchin, Trump's pick for Treasury secretary.

"Wilbur Ross is a champion of American manufacturing and knows how to help companies succeed," Trump said in a statement announcing his choice.

President-elect Donald Trump has picked his campaign finance chairman, Steve Mnuchin, to be his Treasury secretary. The Wall Street banker spent 17 years at Goldman Sachs, where he was a partner, and is now chief executive of Dune Capital Management, a privately owned hedge fund.

Mnuchin confirmed his selection Wednesday during a joint CNBC interview with billionaire investor Wilbur Ross Jr., who has been tapped for commerce secretary.

Rifle fire crackled over a snowy field in central Estonia, interrupted by the rhythmic thumping of a heavy machine gun. From their position on a ridge, paratroopers from the U.S. Army's 173rd Airborne Brigade opened up on the opposite tree line, as their comrades below inched toward an imaginary enemy bunker.

The foe in the exercise earlier this month was unnamed. But with the Russian border just 70 miles away, it was clear what kind of scenario was being played out.

Harriet Jones / WNPR

Workers in several low-wage industries in Hartford went on strike Tuesday, as part of a coordinated protest across the country. Fast-food, security, janitorial, homecare, and child care workers all took part in the day of action.

Updated at 3:18 p.m. ET with McConnell reaction

With an early morning tweet, President-elect Donald Trump revived an issue that hasn't been front and center in American politics for more than a quarter-century.

Flag burning.

Here's what Trump posted at 6:55 a.m. ET:

DonkeyHotey / Creative Commons

Governor Dannel Malloy wants to close Connecticut’s juvenile jail in Middletown by mid-2018, but what will replace it?

This hour, we hear from the Connecticut Juvenile Justice Alliance about its new report that includes the perspective of delinquent youth. The youth offer their opinions on how the state can improve its juvenile justice system.

Stephen Moore, a senior economic adviser to Donald Trump, was once a doctrinaire libertarian and free-trader. Now, Moore says: "Donald Trump's victory has changed the [Republican] Party into a more populist working-class party in some ways that conservatives like myself will like and some that we'll be uncomfortable with."

Digital Vision / Thinkstock

Concerned by a spike in stolen guns in the city of Hartford, police are reaching out to legal gun owners in the capital city and asking them to take better care of their weapons.

Jeff Djevdet / Creative Commons

The charged language used by President-elect Donald Trump this election season may have emboldened people with open hostility toward blacks, gay people, Muslims, Mexicans, Jews, and women.

How do we respond to incidents of hate and people who feel emboldened to hate? How do we teach our children to respond? How do we begin to see bigotry through a wider lens?

President-elect Donald Trump won a convincing electoral vote victory on Nov. 8, but he is claiming falsely that widespread voter fraud cost him the popular vote.

The latest totals show Hillary Clinton leading Trump in the popular vote by more than 2 million. Trump tweeted on Sunday afternoon, "I won the popular vote if you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally." He did not provide evidence to back up that claim, and Trump's representatives did not immediately respond to a request for more information.

Former Cuban leader Fidel Castro has died at age 90, according to Cuban state media, confirms NPR.

Castro, who took power in the Cuban Revolution in 1959, led his country for nearly 50 years.

After undergoing intestinal surgery, Castro had ceded power in July 2006 to his younger brother Raul, who announced his death late Friday on Cuban state television.

Under Fidel Castro's direction, Cuba became the one and only communist state in the Western Hemisphere.

c_vincent/iStock / Thinkstock

It’s been nearly 70 years, and it’s still painful for Ed Spires to tell the story.

In 1948, Spires received an undesirable discharge from the U.S. Air Force because he was gay. Now the 91-year old from Norwalk is suing to have his status upgraded to honorable.

Domenic Chavez / World Bank

President-elect Donald Trump hasn’t elaborated much on immigration policy, beyond what he laid out during the campaign. But enough has been said that many believe he will limit the number of refugees allowed into the U.S.

The city of Boston has a lot of work to do to truly address its racial divisions — that’s a clear sentiment that emerged from many people taking part in the opening session of a city-wide dialogue on race organized by Mayor Marty Walsh.

A multi-racial crowd of close to 1,000 people turned out for the first session on Saturday.

For 19-year-old Nate McLean-Nichols, the police’s treatment of young African American men is his number one racial priority.

jennie-o, creative commons

In his recent New Yorker commentary, Jelani Cobb writes about the defiance some states are feeling towards President-elect Trump and his policies. Democratic leaders in California and New York have released statements saying they'll protect their most vulnerable communities. 

South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley has been selected as U.S. ambassador to the United Nations in President-elect Donald Trump's administration, according to Trump's transition team.

Haley has accepted the position, which requires Senate confirmation.

NPR State Department correspondent Michele Kelemen reports the position was elevated to Cabinet rank by President George W. Bush and that President Barack Obama kept the designation. But Kelemen says the job of U.N. ambassador was not traditionally Cabinet-rank and it's unclear whether Trump will maintain that status.

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy told a group of refugees, Jewish Community leaders, and elected officials on Tuesday that places where local police don’t enforce federal immigration laws should not be called "sanctuary cities."

Meeting with The New York Times today, Donald Trump said the words many have been waiting for: "I disavow and condemn them."

The leader of a refugee resettlement agency in New Haven told a group of elected officials and Jewish and Muslim community leaders on Tuesday that he wants President-elect Donald Trump to visit.

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