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Former US Ambassador, Cotton Back Trump On Taiwan Call, After Immediate Backlash, Criticism
After criticism about Donald Trump talking with Taiwan’s leader jeopardizing U.S.-China relations, Beijing and a former American ambassador suggested Saturday that Americans have perhaps overacted and the president-elect willingness to talk with isolated world leaders doesn’t signal a dangerous foreign policy shift. Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said the call was "just a small trick by Taiwan" and that he didn’t think it would change U.S. foreign policy toward China, according to Hong Kong's Phoenix TV. The conversation Friday between Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen and Trump, a first-time elected official with no official foreign policy experience, indeed broke with decades-long diplomatic tradition. Fox News

Universities Exploring 'Sanctuary' Status For Immigrants
Universities and colleges in several states are considering labeling themselves "sanctuary campuses" amid fears from immigrant students and pressure from activists following the election of Donald Trump. College administrators in New Mexico — the state with the highest percentage of Latino residents— are looking into proposals that would grant immigrant students living in the country illegally protections while they pursue their studies. Meanwhile, advocates in California, Georgia, Illinois, Minnesota and Texas are pressing their state and private universities to provide sanctuary to these immigrant students, known as DREAMers. Fox News

Insults Fly When Trump, Clinton Aides Meet
Four weeks after the election, tensions between top operatives at the Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton campaigns erupted during a Harvard Kennedy School Institute of Politics discussion that was intended to record history by drawing out the internal deliberations of both campaigns. Facing off at long tables on opposite sides of the room during a two-hour panel, raw emotions on both sides exploded as operatives debated how Trump had won the divisive campaign. There were periods of calm, substantive discussion about data, metrics and target states, but many moments where tempers flared, with acrimony mirroring the 2016 race. Advisers on the opposing sides shouted over each other. Accusations of lying flew between them. There was lots of eye-rolling on both sides. Operatives snapped at one another for interrupting, as an air of mutual contempt settled within the room. Trump Campaign Manager Kellyanne Conway called members of Clinton's team "bitter." CNN

Impeachment Vote Looms For South Korean President
Embattled South Korean President Park Geun-hye faces an ultimatum from her own party: Announce a timeline for her resignation or face possible impeachment. Park, who's been dogged by a classified information scandal involving a longtime friend, said earlier this week she would resign if that's what the National Assembly wants.
Many observers see stepping down as a way for Park to avoid the embarrassment of impeachment as opposition parties look to press ahead next week with a vote to unseat her. Park stopped short of specifying a date for her resignation, leading some breakaway members of her Saenuri Party to ask her to set a timeline for her departure. Mainstream members of her party have stipulated that she must stand down by April 30, with a proposed presidential election in June. Her five-year term is set to end in February 2018. CNN


U.S. Veterans, Tribe Elders Join Forces In Pipeline Protest
U.S. military veterans spoke with tribal leaders on Saturday about their shared interest in blocking a multibillion-dollar pipeline project near a Native American reservation, with as many as 3,500 veterans joining protests at the site. Veterans Stand for Standing Rock members aim to form a human barrier in front of police to assist thousands of activists who have spent months demonstrating against plans to route the Dakota Access Pipeline beneath a lake near the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation. The group of veterans, including members already gathered at the site, will also finish building a barracks and mess hall near where they constructed a headquarters at the Oceti Sakowin camp about 5 miles (8 km) north of the small town of Cannon Ball. Reuters

Trump Targets Another Company, Draws Sanders' Criticism
President-elect Donald Trump, after threatening consequences for companies that move jobs overseas, turned to another Indiana company planning a move to Mexico, drawing a rebuke from former Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders on Saturday. "Rexnord of Indiana is moving to Mexico and rather viciously firing all of its 300 workers. This is happening all over our country. No more!" Trump said in a Friday night Twitter post. Rexnord Corp (RXN.N), an industrial supplier based in Milwaukee, announced plans in October to move a bearing plant, and its 300 jobs, from Indianapolis to Mexico, employees told the Indianapolis Star at the time. Reuters

Trump, Pence Endorse Louisiana GOP Senate Candidate John Kennedy Ahead Of Runoff
Vice President-elect Mike Pence traveled to Louisiana's largest city Saturday to endorse Republican John Kennedy for U.S. Senate — a last-dash visit ahead of the state's runoff election in one week. "I'm really here to say thanks, but we have one more race to win this year," Pence told a crowd of supporters from inside a New Orleans airport hangar. As the Indiana governor looked to capitalize on the GOP's victories this election, including capturing the White House, President-elect Donald Trump also gave Kennedy his stamp of approval via Twitter. "State Treasurer John Kennedy is my choice for US Senator from Louisiana. Early voting today; election next Saturday." He added minutes later in a follow-up tweet that Kennedy would be "a tremendous help to us in Washington." MSNBC

Trump's Call With Taiwan's Leader Exposes China's Strained Relations
When President-elect Donald Trump spoke to Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen on Friday, he not only broke decades of U.S. protocol, he also opened the door to potential trouble with China — which has long refused to recognize the controversial island as a separate nation. The phone call, described by Taiwan's presidential spokesperson as a "friendly talk," is believed to be the first time a U.S. president or president-elect has had contact with a Taiwanese leader since before the U.S. cut off diplomatic relations with Taiwan in 1979. MSNBC


Chicago Pledges $1 Million Fund To Protect ‘Anxious’ Immigrants From Trump Deportations
Chicago will use $1 million leftover from a tax rebate program to defend immigrants there from any deportation efforts undertaken by President-elect Donald Trump, Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s office said Friday. “Chicago has a proud history of diversity and inclusion, and my administration will do everything in our power to ensure that immigrants remain safe, secure and supported,” Mr. Emanuel, a Democrat, said in a statement Friday. “Because the election has created anxiety and uncertainty, we’ve created a legal fund to help ensure immigrants and refugees have access to legal guidance,” the statement said. Washington Times

Emergency Officials: We Won’t Let Dakota Access Pipeline Protesters Freeze
The head of North Dakota’s emergency management services says the state is prepared to respond to Dakota Access pipeline protesters who may need help during a winter storm or some other crisis. State Homeland Security Director Greg Wilz said it would be a “huge challenge,” especially during a mass evacuation, but his office has winter shelter plans in place and various agencies are ready to respond. “The bottom line here is, if we are in a situation of life and limb, we are going to be humane in anything and everything we do,” Wilz said. “We aren’t going to let somebody out there freeze. So if they start evacuating en masse looking for shelter - which I highly suspect will happen - we would take care of that.” Washington Times

Speaker Ryan Says He And Trump Have Patched Things Up
The speaker of the House tells Scott Pelley he and President-elect Donald Trump have made up and speak on the phone nearly every day.  On the campaign trail, the two were at odds.  Speaker Ryan had called one of Trump’s statements racist and Trump dismissed him as ineffective and disloyal, but Ryan says the two are not looking back and are already working together.  Ryan spoke to Pelley today in Washington in an interview to be broadcast on 60 Minutes, Sunday Dec. 4 at 7 p.m. ET/PT. An excerpt of that interview appeared on the CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley. A transcript of it is below. CBS

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Donald Trump Singles Out Another Indiana Plant For Moving To Mexico
Fresh off a deal with air-conditioning company Carrier, President-elect Donald Trump is now singling out another company leaving its Indiana plant for Mexico: Rexnord, which plans to nix 300 union jobs from their factory in Indianapolis. Mr. Trump sent a tweet Friday about Rexnord, charging that it was “rather viciously firing” workers and vowing “No more!” Rexnord Bearings announced the move to union officials in mid-November, saying it was going forward with plans to shift the plant’s 300 union jobs and dozens of supervisory jobs to Mexico, according to a report by CBS News’ local affiliate. The move is expected to begin in April and finish by June of next year. Rexnord did not immediately reply to a request for comment. CBS

A Donald Trump Museum Could Open In Atlantic City
A group of historians in Atlantic City wants to open a museum dedicated to President-elect Donald Trump. Stockton University professor Bob Blaskiewicz told the Press of Atlantic City ( ) that the subject of Trump in Atlantic City will be of historical interest now that he has been elected president. Trump once owned three casinos in the city. They brought in a lot of money, but were involved in four bankruptcies under his watch and one more after he was gone. ABC

Donald Trump Jumps Into Sensitive International Issue With Taiwan Call
On Saturday, China’s foreign minister described this controversial call as a “little trick” by Taiwan, and the Chinese government has already contacted the Obama White House to file an official complaint, CBS News correspondent Errol Barnett reports. Meanwhile, the president-elect and his transition team are on defense, deflecting criticism and experiencing the delicacy of diplomacy. No U.S. president-elect has spoken with a Taiwanese head of state since diplomatic ties were severed in 1979 - until Friday. Mr. Trump’s transition team said the two discussed “the close economic, political and security ties ... between Taiwan and the United States” and that President Tsai Ying-wen congratulated the president-elect on his victory. ABC


Erdogan Says Turkey Faces ‘Economic Sabotage’ As Lira Plunges
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Saturday said his political enemies are trying to sabotage the economy by speculating on the stock market, foreign exchange rate and interest rates after failing to overthrow his administration in July. The lira plunged to record lows over the past week even as Erdogan urged Turks to convert their foreign currency savings into liras and gold while vowing to keep up his fight against high interest rates. Erdogan is trying to verbally stem a run on the lira, which has lost more than any other emerging market currency over the past month, damping everything from consumer sentiment to economic growth. Since a coup was quelled in July, Erdogan has sought popular support to shift from a parliamentary system to an executive presidency to concentrate power in his office. Bloomberg

SWAT Team Shoots Man To Death After Louisiana Deputy Shot
Authorities say SWAT team officers shot a man to death when they stormed a house after the man shot a sheriff's deputy. Jefferson Parish Sheriff Newell Normand says 48-year-old Deputy Nicholas Songy was hospitalized Saturday and "alert and doing well." Authorities have not released the identity of the slain man. Normand told the New Orleans Advocate ( ) the SWAT team stormed the house where the suspect was holed up and ordered him to lower his weapon. Authorities say they shot him after he refused. Songy, who is white, had arrived to investigate a domestic disturbance call. He went into the backyard where he encountered the armed man. Normand says gunfire was exchanged and Songy was hit in the leg. It was unknown where the suspect was hit. Las Vegas Sun

Colorado Man Sues Jail After Gouging Out Hs Own Eye
A man who gouged out his own eye while in jail is suing Rio Grande County saying jailers failed to adequately protect him from himself. The Denver Post reports ( Gordon Sawyers' lawsuit alleges that while he was under suicide watch — which calls for cell checks every 15 minutes — no one checked on him for three hours one night in early December, during which he gouged out his right eye. Sawyers had been arrested on Nov. 18, 2015 for allegedly burning down an art gallery to cleanse it of witches. The lawsuit says Sawyers' psychiatrist told jailers that Sawyers was suffering from severe mental illness and should be watched carefully because his delusions were likely to intensify. Las Vegas Sun

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American Airlines Flight Attendants Demand New Uniform Recall
American Airlines flight attendants are demanding a "full recall" of their new uniforms after some 1,600 workers became ill. The Association of Professional Flight Attendants union said the uniforms, rolled out in September, are to blame for headaches, rashes and respiratory illnesses. There have been more than 1,600 health complaints from cabin crews, official said. American said the issues were isolated and possibly due to a wool allergy. "The growing number of reports of suspected reactions, triggered by both direct and indirect contact with the uniform, has prompted APFA to ask that all uniforms be recalled until further joint testing with the company can be completed," the union said. UPI

VA Dentist Resigns After Possibly Infecting 600 Veterans With HIV And Hepatitis
An unidentified Department of Veterans Affairs dentist in Wisconsin resigned after possibly exposing hundreds of patients to HIV and hepatitis B and C. Officials at Tomah Veterans Affairs Medical Center announced Friday the dentist, who placed veterans at risk by reusing his tools, resigned after initially moving to an administrative role, The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported. "Although we cannot prevent the dentist from resigning while administrative actions are pending, we are continuing reporting procedures to the state licensing board and the National Practitioner Data Bank," acting medical director at the center Victoria Brahm said. "We will not stop doing all we can to ensure those responsible for this serious breach of patient trust are held accountable." UPI

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Obama, Bennett Agree: Keep Netanyahu Guessing
The PM has two swords dangling above his head: Bennett’s bill to retroactively legalize settlement outposts, and the possibility Obama might let an anti-Israel resolution go through the UNSC. For Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the following sequence of events would be nothing less than a scenario from hell.
On December 25, the first day of Hanukka and the day by which the High Court of Justice ordered that the settlement outpost of Amona must be dismantled, IDF soldiers might very well be called upon to trudge up to that Jewish community in Samaria and forcibly drag away its residents. Jerusalem Post

Last Chance For The President's $357 A Month Homeowner Bailout
A forgotten mortgage stimulus program that was passed by Obama to help the middle class Americans reduce their monthly payments by as much as $4,264 each year.
The government has announced that this program will expire this year and is making a final push urging homeowners to take advantage of this program. If lowering your payments, paying off your mortgage faster, and even taking some cash out would help you, it is vital you act now. Jerusalem Post

Aleppo Siege: Syria Rebels Lose 50% Of Territory
Gen Samir Sulaiman told the BBC he hoped all of Aleppo would be in government hands within weeks. Gen Sulaiman was speaking a day after the army seized another district, Tariq al-Bab, from the rebels opposing President Bashar al-Assad. Swathes of east Aleppo held by rebels have been seized by government troops and militiamen in the past three weeks. Earlier reports on Saturday had suggested as much as two-thirds of the rebel-held area had been recaptured. BBC

Obama Presses Trump On Cybersecurity
The 100-page document highlights areas where the US falls short and calls on the private sector to help hasten the improvement of digital services. President Barack Obama set up the commission in preparation for the new administration. He said its recommendations should be followed within the first 100 days of Mr Trump's presidency. "Now it is time for the next administration to take up this charge and ensure that cyberspace can continue to be the driver for prosperity, innovation, and change both in the United States and around the world,'’ the outgoing leader said. BBC

Jill Stein Drops Pennsylvania Recount Suit After Failing To Raise $1m Bond
The Green Party dropped its Pennsylvania recount suit on Saturday, ending its bid to have the state explore whether voting machines and systems had been tampered with and the election result manipulated. Late Saturday, a court canceled a hearing scheduled for Monday, when attorneys for Jill Stein, the party’s 2016 nominee, would have argued their case. Lawyers for the Green Party said they could not afford the $1m bond ordered by the court by Monday at 5pm. Green Party-backed efforts to analyze election software in scattered precincts are continuing, however, alongside efforts in other states. Guardian

Child’s Cognitive Skills Linked To Time Spent With Mother
It is a question that has troubled parents down the years. Just how much time should they spend with their children when they are growing up? Now a new study suggests that the answer – at least for mothers – should be as much as they can afford to give. The study, by academics from the University of Essex and University College London, published in this week’s edition of the Economic Journal, finds that a young child’s cognitive and social skills are improved considerably by spending more time with their mother between the ages of three and seven. Guardian

Ku Klux Klan Supporters Give Nazi Salute At North Carolina Rally In Support Of Donald Trump
Supporters of the Ku Klux Klan drove through a North Carolina market town on Saturday in what they said was a show of support for Donald Trump and his presidency. They gave Nazi salutes and shouted “White power” as they thundered through Roxboro in the middle of the afternoon. The open display by a movement condemned as a hate group illustrates the way many believe Mr Trump’s election win – after a campaign in which he promised to ban foreign Muslims from entering the country, ridiculed a disabled reporter and described Mexicans as rapists and drug smugglers – had unleashed dark forces. Telegraph

Virgin Galactic’s Space Programme Moves Forward As SpaceShipTwo Carries Out First Successful Glide Test
Virgin Galactic’s space tourism project has taken a step forward when its new SpaceShipTwo carried out a successful first glide flight in the Mojave desert. VSS Unity separated from its parent carrier aircraft WhiteKnightTwo and completed the free flight in 10 minutes, SpaceNews reported. This is the second SpaceShipTwo. The first, which was named VSS Enterprise, crashed in October 2014 killing Michael Alsbury, the co-pilot, and injuring the pilot, Peter Siebold. Telegraph

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