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News Wrap: Schumer denies threatening Supreme Court justices

March 8, 2020


JUDY WOODRUFF: In the day’s other news: Progressive
champion Elizabeth Warren has ended her bid for the Democratic presidential campaign. The Massachusetts senator had led the race
back in October, but she failed to win a single state, including her own on Super Tuesday. Today, she addressed supporters outside her
home in Cambridge, and acknowledged there was no way forward. SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN (D-MA): I will not be running
for president in 2020. But I guarantee I will stay in the fight for
the hardworking folks across this country who’ve gotten the short end of the stick over
and over. That’s been the fight of my life, and it will
continue to be so. JUDY WOODRUFF: Warren didn’t endorse former
Vice President Joe Biden or Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, saying she needs time to think
about it. Biden leads Sanders right now 626 to 550 in
the Associated Press delegate count. It takes 1,991 to clinch the Democratic nomination. We will return to the campaign after the news
summary. The U.S. Senate’s top Democrat insisted today
that he never threatened two Supreme Court justices, but he also voiced regret. On Wednesday, Minority Leader Chuck Schumer
had said conservatives Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh would — quote — “pay the price”
if they vote to curtail abortion rights. Chief Justice John Roberts condemned the comment. And, today, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell
blasted Schumer’s statements. The New York Democrat responded on the Senate
floor. SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D-NY): I’m from Brooklyn. We speak in strong language. I shouldn’t have used the words I did, but
in no way was I making a threat. I never, never would do such a thing. And Leader McConnell knows that, and Republicans
who are busy manufacturing outrage over these comments know that too. JUDY WOODRUFF: Schumer said he had meant the
justices might face political, and not physical, consequences. The leaders of Turkey and Russia agreed today
on a cease-fire for Northwestern Syria. Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Vladimir Putin met
in Moscow. It followed clashes in Idlib province between
Turkish and Syrian forces, with two more Turkish troops killed today. Turkey opposes a Syrian offensive, backed
by Russia, that is driving new refugees to the Turkish border. The United States today pressed the Taliban
to call off attacks in Afghanistan. The militants have stepped up assaults on
Afghan forces since signing a deal for the U.S. to withdraw troops. Secretary of state Mike Pompeo said today
it is time to stop all of the violence and get serious about moving forward. MIKE POMPEO, U.S. Secretary of State: In no
uncertain terms, violence must be reduced immediately for the peace process to move
forward. We also continue to press all sides to stop
posturing, start a practical discussion about prisoner releases, knuckle down and prepare
for the upcoming inter-Afghan negotiations. JUDY WOODRUFF: Pompeo also rejected an investigation
into U.S. actions in Afghanistan. The International Criminal Court at The Hague
agreed today to allow the inquiry. It will probe allegations of war crimes against
the Taliban, against the Afghan government and U.S. forces. And the woman who first inspired the World
War II character Rosie the Riveter has died. Rosalind P. Walter passed away on Wednesday
at her home in New York. Her wartime work on an aircraft assembly line
led to a song about Rosie the Riveter. Several other women also served as models
for the character. Later, Walter became a main benefactor of
PBS. She was 95 years old. Still to come on the “NewsHour”: the lay of
the campaign trail now that Elizabeth Warren has ended her presidential bid; documenting
the anguish that migrant children faced at the hands of the U.S. government; the lives
of civilians caught in a crossfire as fighting erupts between Turkey and Syria; and a preacher
gives his Brief But Spectacular take on theology in action.

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