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This town is the best in North Carolina, report finds. Here’s why it tops the list


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Pinch-hitter pitcher Gausman sac fly in 11th, SF tops Braves


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China tops list of US’s biggest threats for first time


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Biden Tops Iowa Poll by Democratic Rural Group: Campaign Update

Biden Tops Iowa Poll by Democratic Rural Group: Campaign Update(Bloomberg) — A new Iowa poll has Joe Biden leading the Democratic presidential race in the first caucus state. The former vice president also placed as likely caucusgoers’ top second choice, putting him in a strong position with just two weeks to go until voters begin to choose their nominee.Biden had the support of 24% of likely caucus-goers polled by Focus on Rural America, an Iowa group with Democratic ties that has been polling in the state since last year. Biden’s backing in the survey has been roughly stable since the group’s September poll, when he was at 25%. He is also the second choice of 24% of those surveyed, an important measure given that caucusgoers have the chance to choose a second candidate if their first choice gets below 15% at their caucus site on Feb. 3.Elizabeth Warren was in second place at 19%, a 4-point drop from her showing in the previous poll. Pete Buttigieg was in third place at 16% and Bernie Sanders was in fourth at 12%. Amy Klobuchar, who’s staking her campaign on success in Iowa, was in fifth place at 11%. Buttigieg was the second most-popular second-choice candidate, with 21% of likely caucus-goers saying they’d support him if their first choice is not viable.The poll’s ordering of the top four candidates is different than the well-regarded Des Moines Register poll released 10 days ago, which had Sanders leading and Biden in fourth. The discrepancies probably reflect what’s expected to be a messy caucus night result that few Iowa Democrats are willing to predict.The poll, conducted by David Binder Research, surveyed 500 likely caucusgoers and has an error margin of 4.4 percentage points.COMING UP:Democratic presidential candidates Pete Buttigieg, former mayor of South Bend, Indiana, and Michael Bloomberg, former mayor of New York, both plan to address the U.S. Conference of Mayors on Wednesday.The candidates will debate again in New Hampshire on Feb. 7.The first-in-the-nation Iowa caucuses will be held Feb. 3. The New Hampshire primary is Feb. 11. Nevada holds its caucuses on Feb. 22 and South Carolina has a primary on Feb. 29.(Michael Bloomberg is the founder and majority owner of Bloomberg LP, the parent company of Bloomberg News.)To contact the reporter on this story: Jennifer Epstein in Washington at jepstein32@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Wendy Benjaminson at wbenjaminson@bloomberg.net, Edward DufnerFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.



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Tally of children split at border tops 5,400 in new count

Tally of children split at border tops 5,400 in new countU.S. immigration authorities separated more than 1,500 children from their parents at the Mexico border early in the Trump administration, the American Civil Liberties Union said Thursday, bringing the total number of children separated since July 2017 to more than 5,400. The ACLU said the administration told its attorneys that 1,556 children were separated from July 1, 2017, to June 26, 2018, when a federal judge in San Diego ordered that children in government custody be reunited with their parents. Children from that period can be difficult to find because the government had inadequate tracking systems.



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Iraq blames 'malicious' hands as toll from unrest tops 100

Iraq blames 'malicious' hands as toll from unrest tops 100Twelve anti-government demonstrators were killed Sunday in ongoing protests in the capital Baghdad, the latest fatalities in six days of clashes that have left more than 100 dead and thousands wounded. Iraq’s government has scrambled to contain the popular anger that has racked Baghdad and a number of southern cities since Tuesday. In the first official statement from the government accounting for the violence, Interior Ministry spokesman Saad Maan said Sunday that 104 people had been killed in the six days of unrest, including eight members of the security forces, and more than 6,000 wounded.



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Joe Biden Tops Bernie Sanders’ First-Day Fundraising Tally

Joe Biden Tops Bernie Sanders’ First-Day Fundraising TallyREUTERSJoe Biden’s presidential campaign announced Friday that it had raised a total of $ 6.3 million in the first 24 hours of his candidacy—the largest single-day tally for any 2020 candidate thus far. “That’s more than any other presidential campaign so far,” boasted a note to supporters. The campaign said that 97 percent of online donations were under $ 200 and that the average online donation was $ 41. Additionally, they said that a total of 96,926 people contributed and some 61 percent of donations were new and did not come from pre-existing email lists. A Biden aide told The Daily Beast that the number was measured from 6 a.m. Thursday to 6 a.m. Friday, that the total includes a high-dollar fundraiser Biden attended in Philadelphia on Thursday, and that none of the funds are general-election funds. The fundraiser was held at the home of David L. Cohen, senior executive vice president at Comcast, where guests were asked to contribute up to the maximum of $ 2,800 for the primary campaign. Health-insurance executive Daniel J. Hilferty, CEO of Independence Blue Cross, was another host. Organizers told The Wall Street Journal that the fundraiser brought in at least $ 700,000 but The Daily Beast could not independently confirm that figure. Prior to the event, former Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell told The Daily Beast that he was getting calls from people looking for invitations. Biden’s overall figure is greater than the single-day totals from Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and former Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-TX), who previously held the top two highest 24-hour fundraising totals. However, Biden’s tally came from significantly fewer donors than Sanders’ and included the high-dollar event. Sanders raised more than $ 5.9 million from 223,047 individual contributors and has not held any fundraisers, nor plans to. O’Rourke has not had any fundraisers, but he will hold a high-dollar event in New York City. He raised $ 6.1 million in his first day from more than 128,000 contributors, which appeared to lead the field, until the campaign's FEC filing revealed that nearly $ 300,000 of that money was devoted to general election funds. Biden’s haul helps ease concerns from within the former vice president’s camp and supporters that he would not be able to out-raise several popular 2020 opponents. While he has access to the prior 2012 Obama-Biden email list, it is likely to have diminished in size over the years and, unlike some of his opponents who had transferred funds from Senate runs, Biden began his campaign with $ 0. Read more at The Daily Beast.Got a tip? Send it to The Daily Beast here



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Prayers, fear in tsunami-struck Indonesian towns as toll tops 400

Prayers, fear in tsunami-struck Indonesian towns as toll tops 400A small Christmas service was held near a stretch of Indonesia’s tsunami-struck coastline Tuesday, as panicked residents in one coastal town tried to flee after rumours spread that another deadly wave was about to smash into the coast. It turned out to be a false alarm, but widespread fears about a repeat disaster — and warnings that clean water and medicine supplies were running low — rippled across the region as the death toll from Saturday’s volcano-triggered disaster topped 400. Thousands more have been displaced, with many left homeless after houses were flattened by the killer wave.



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Joe Biden tops key 2020 poll as he mulls whether he is too old to run for president

Joe Biden tops key 2020 poll as he mulls whether he is too old to run for presidentJoe Biden, Barack Obama’s vice-president, has emerged as an early frontrunner among Democrats vying for the 2020 presidential nomination with a dominant lead among voters in Iowa, who will be the first to state their preference next year. A new CNN/Des Moines Register/Mediacom poll finds 32 per cent of likely caucusgoers saying they back Mr Biden as their first choice, ahead of 19 per cent for Bernie Sanders and 11 per cent for Beto O'Rourke, the telegenic campaigner who came close to an against-the-odds win in Texas last month. The results have Democrats salivating about a dream ticket that matches a 76-year-old veteran, who is popular with blue-collar voters, with Mr O’Rourke, a 46-year-old with a knack for producing viral videos. “It’s early days and a lot can change but it could be a way to get past the age issue with Joe,” said a Democratic strategist who spoke on condition of anonymity ahead of endorsing a candidate. “Then again, it’s two white men.” Mr Biden has not yet decided whether he will join a crowded field of contenders. However, he has done little to dispel the speculation and has touted his age as an advantage. Profile | Joe Biden “I’ll be as straight with you as I can. I think I’m the most qualified person in the country to be president,” he said during a speech at the University of Montana earlier this month. “The issues that we face as a country today are the issues that have been in my wheelhouse that I've worked on my whole life.” His supporters say he is best placed to woo back the parts of the Rust Belt and middle America that were unimpressed with Hillary Clinton’s run and defected to Donald Trump in 2016. But doubts remain that the Democrats are in danger of losing the youth vote if they plump for Mr Biden or the likes of Mr Sanders, 77, or Elizabeth Warren, 69. The Associated Press reported at the weekend that Mr Biden was talking to friends and long-time supporters about whether he was too old to run for the White House. They have floated the idea of teaming up with Mr O’Rourke. Mr O'Rourke excited Democratic voters and individuals donors in Texas, a usually staunch Republican state. Beto O'Rourke is mulling a 2020 run after a strong midterm showing Credit: Sergio Flores/Reuters The three-term Congressman initially ruled himself out of a 2020 run but is now considering capitalising on his sudden national profile. He became famous for livestreaming almost every aspect of his life during the midterm campaign when he came within three percentage points of a giant-killing victory over Ted Cruz. Iowa is a critical state for would-be presidents. It represents the first votes of the election cycle as, come February 2020, party supporters gather in caucuses to select their preferred candidate. The winner has gone on to clinch the nomination in every contested primary season since 2000. Among other notable contenders, Ms Warren, the Massachusetts Senator, polled eight percent and Kamala Harris, the California Senator, won the backing of five percent of respondents in the new poll. Last week the New York Times reported that Mr Sanders and Ms Warren had met to discuss their rival presidential ambitions, but that neither had tried to dissuade the other from running, nor had they agreed to a joint-ticket.  Ms Warren, a noted progressive like Mr Sanders, has drawn fierce criticism for publishing the results of a DNA test to prove that she has Native American ancestry. The move followed Mr Trump, who mockingly dubbed Ms Warren "Pocahontas", alleging such claims were false.



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Time running out for survivors as Indonesia toll tops 1,400

Time running out for survivors as Indonesia toll tops 1,400The death toll in Indonesia’s twin quake-tsunami disaster passed 1,400 Wednesday, with time running out to rescue survivors and the UN warning of “vast” unmet needs that have fuelled looting. Indonesian soldiers have been ordered to fire on those raiding stores on the quake and tsunami-struck island of Sulawesi, a colonel told AFP, after desperate survivors emptied shops of food and water.



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