1/ The special grand jury investigating efforts by Trump and his allies to overturn the 2020 election concluded that “one or more witnesses” committed perjury during their testimony and urged Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis to “seek appropriate indictments for such crimes where the evidence is compelling.” Willis will now decide whether to criminally charge Trump or his allies based, in part, on the findings by the special grand jury. Willis told a judge last month that decisions about potential prosecutions were “imminent.” The jurors also “unanimously” concluded “that no widespread fraud took place in the Georgia 2020 presidential election,” rejecting Trump’s conspiracy theories after hearing “extensive testimony” from election officials, poll workers, and other experts. Witnesses were not identified in the public, five-page excerpt of the grand jury report, nor did it mention which Georgia laws – other than perjury – the jurors believe may have been violated. (Associated Press / NBC News / Politico / New York Times / Washington Post / Bloomberg / Wall Street Journal / CNN / CNBC)
2/ The special counsel investigating Trump’s his role in the Jan. 6 insurrection subpoenaed Mark Meadows for documents and testimony. Meadows is one of Trump’s most senior officials that Jack Smith’s office has subpoenaed. Last week, Smith subpoenaed Pence. Smith also is investigating Trump’s handling of classified documents after leaving office. (CNN)
3/ The FBI conducted two planned searches at the University of Delaware as part of the Justice Department’s investigation into Biden’s handling of classified documents. The previously undisclosed searches were conducted in recent weeks, with the consent and cooperation of Biden’s legal team. The FBI removed multiple boxes from the premises, but the documents reportedly didn’t have classified markings. (CNN / CBS News / Wall Street Journal)
4/ Biden suggested that the three unidentified objects the U.S. military shot down were unrelated to the Chinese spy balloon, but that his administration still doesn’t “know exactly” what the objects were. The U.S. intelligence community’s current assessment is that the aerial objects were “most likely tied to private companies, recreation or research institutions.” Biden added that there is no evidence of a “sudden increase in number of objects in the sky.” (New York Times / CNN / Axios / Bloomberg / ABC News)
5/ The Kentucky Supreme Court ruled that the state’s near-total bans on abortion will remain in place while legal challenges continue. The state legislature passed two laws in 2019 that ban nearly all abortions in Kentucky with no exceptions for rape or incest. The American Civil Liberties Union has challenged the two laws on behalf of Kentucky’s two remaining clinics, which were forced to stop providing abortions in early August. The ACLU argued that the laws violate Kentucky’s state constitution, including the “right of seeking and pursuing their safety and happiness” and freedom from “absolute and arbitrary power.” In November, Kentucky voters rejected a ballot measure that would have amended the state constitution to explicitly say that there is no right to an abortion. (Politico / NPR)
6/ The president of the World Bank will resign after refusing to say whether he accepted the overwhelming scientific consensus that fossil fuels are driving the climate crisis. David Malpass, who was nominated by Trump, said he would resign in June – a year before his term ends. The departure allows Biden to install a new head of the World Bank who can implement the administration’s goal of overhauling the financial institution to focus more on fighting climate change. (Associated Press / New York Times / Axios / Washington Post / Bloomberg / The Guardian)
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