10 things you need to know today: September 27, 2023

A New York judge rules Trump defrauded banks, Biden visits auto workers on picket line, and more

President Biden walks UAW picket line
President Biden walks a UAW picket line
(Image credit: Jim Watson / AFP via Getty Images)

1. Judge finds Trump liable for fraudulent property values

A New York judge ruled Tuesday that former President Donald Trump, his two adult sons and two other Trump Organization executives fraudulently inflated the value of Trump properties to get better loan and insurance terms. Judge Arthur Engoron said Trump and the other defendants showed a "propensity to engage in persistent fraud." Engoron canceled the company's New York business certificates, stripping Trump's control of key properties. The decision marked a victory for New York Attorney General Letitia James, who says Trump overvalued properties by $2.2 billion and seeks $250 million in penalties in a trial that could start next week. Trump called Engoron "deranged." His lawyer signaled a likely appeal. ABC News, The New York Times

2. Biden visits striking auto workers on picket line

President Biden visited striking United Auto Workers union members at a General Motors plant in Michigan on Tuesday, telling them, "You deserve a raise." He was the first sitting president in a century to visit a labor union picket line. Biden's remarks came nearly two weeks into the Detroit-based union's first simultaneous strike against all three Detroit automakers — Ford, GM and Chrysler's Stellantis. A day after Biden's visit to the UAW picket line, former President Donald Trump, the front-runner to be Biden's Republican challenger in 2024, is scheduled to speak at a non-union auto parts supplier in Michigan, a potentially crucial state in the election. The Detroit News

3. Senate proposes short-term fix to prevent a shutdown

Senators on Tuesday unveiled a bipartisan stopgap funding proposal to prevent a government shutdown likely to start in four days. The measure would keep federal agencies funded through Nov. 17, giving Congress time to pass annual spending bills. The Senate bill would include $6 billion for Ukraine and $6 billion for domestic disaster assistance. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) called the proposal "a bridge toward cooperation and away from extremism." In the Republican-controlled House, far-right conservatives blocking a stopgap bill dug in on demands for deep spending cuts to safety nets. Former President Donald Trump urged the GOP hardliners not to deal with Democrats. "Unless you get everything, shut it down!" Trump wrote on social media. The Associated Press

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4. Supreme Court rejects Alabama election map, again

The Supreme Court on Tuesday declined to pause a lower court ruling ordering a special master to draw a new Alabama congressional map to replace one that diluted the influence of Black voters. The Supreme Court ruled 5-4 in June that Alabama's Republican-drawn districts violated the Voting Rights Act because just one of the state's seven congressional districts had a Black majority, even though 27% of the state's population is Black. The GOP-dominated legislature drew a new map that didn't correct the problem. A lower court rebuked GOP lawmakers and called for the special master to create a new map with two majority-Black districts immediately, saying the state had already held one election with the "unlawful map." NPR

5. Ukraine 'clarifying' report it killed Russia's Black Sea Fleet commander

Ukraine's military on Tuesday backtracked on its claim it killed the commander of Russia's Black Sea Fleet in a missile strike in Crimea, saying it was "clarifying" the outcome of the attack. Russia earlier Tuesday released video appearing to show the fleet leader, Adm. Viktor Sokolov, meeting with other defense officials. Ukraine's special operations forces said Monday they killed Sokolov and 33 other Russian officers last week in a strike on Moscow's naval headquarters in Crimea, a hub for its forces invading Ukraine. In the clip, Russia's defense minister, Sergei Shoigu, discussed a drill he said Russia's Pacific Fleet wrapped up Monday, and an officer resembling Sokolov appears on a video screen, apparently joining virtually. The New York Times

6. Canada House speaker quits after honoring Nazi veteran

The speaker of Canada's House of Commons, Anthony Rota, said Tuesday he would step down after facing widespread criticism for praising a former Nazi soldier during a visit by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. Rota recognized the ex-soldier, 98-year-old Yaroslav Hunka, after Zelenskyy addressed Canadian lawmakers. "That public recognition has caused pain to individuals and communities, including the Jewish community in Canada and around the world," said Rota, a member of the ruling Liberal party. "I accept full responsibility for my actions." A deputy speaker will take charge. Russia said the incident showed its war in Ukraine was justified. Reuters

7. Hollywood writers cleared to return to work

Hollywood writers are returning to work Wednesday after the Writers Guild of America backed a deal with studios to end a four-month strike. "Today, our negotiating committee, WGAW board and WGAE Council all voted unanimously to recommend the agreement," the writers guild posted on social media Tuesday. "The strike ends at 12:01 a.m." The writers are permitted to work as the union's 11,000 members vote on ratifying the new contract over the next few days. The 148-day strike was one of the longest in Hollywood history. A key part of the deal was a new business model that includes pay residuals and viewership transparency for streaming. The Washington Post

8. Newsom signs tougher California gun laws

California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) on Tuesday signed gun control measures with tougher concealed-carry rules and a new tax on firearm and ammunition sales. Newsom said in a signing ceremony that California, which has some of the nation's strongest firearm restrictions, will fight legal challenges to its laws. He called for federal lawmakers to do more to fight gun violence. "We have a responsibility to do more and continue to lead in that conversation," Newsom said. "I think we need to be screaming louder about this." Two California mass shootings early this year increased pressure for new laws to regulate guns. Los Angeles Times

9. China warns Philippines over removal of floating barrier

China on Tuesday warned the Philippines not to "stir up trouble" after a Filipino coast guard diver removed a floating barrier installed by China to keep other countries' fishing boats out of a disputed part of the South China Sea. Authorities in Manila on Monday released video showing the skin diver cutting a rope anchoring a nearly 1,000-foot string of buoys near the Scarborough Shoal, a strategically important reef and fertile fishing ground 130 miles west of the Philippine island of Luzon. Beijing said it "firmly upholds the sovereignty and maritime rights" around what it calls Huangyan Island. Manila said the barriers endangered fishing boat crews on the shoal, which it calls Bajo de Masinloc. Al Jazeera, CNN

10. Dozens killed in fire at Iraq wedding

A fire killed at least 100 people and injured 150 others at a wedding in northern Iraq on Tuesday. Witnesses said the flames spread quickly after people set off fireworks as the bride and groom danced. "The fire led to the collapse of parts of the hall as a result of the use of highly flammable, low-cost building materials that collapse within minutes when fire breaks out," Iraq's civil defense directorate said, according to state news agency INA. Videos showed thick smoke billowing from the Al Haytham Wedding Hall as crowds gathered by ambulances outside. A wedding guest said the bride and groom were devastated but safe. BBC News, CNN

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