Trump impeachment trial, Kobe Bryant, coronavirus: 5 things to know Wednesday

Editors, USA TODAY Published 3:21 a.m. ET Jan. 29, 2020 | Updated 8:03 a.m. ET Jan. 29, 2020CLOSEPresident Trump impeachment trial: And now the questions ...President Donald Trump's impeachment trial heads toward written questions Wednesday after his defense team closed out opening arguments. For less than two hours, Trump's legal team summarized its case against the abuse of power…


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Editors, USA TODAY
Published 3:21 a.m. ET Jan. 29, 2020 | Updated 8:03 a.m. ET Jan. 29, 2020

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President Trump impeachment trial: And now the questions …

President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial heads toward written questions Wednesday after his defense team closed out opening arguments. For less than two hours, Trump’s legal team summarized its case against the abuse of power and obstruction of Congress articles of impeachment. They also argued that the articles fail constitutionally, and that Trump did not delay aid to Ukraine in an attempt to pressure the country into investigating the president’s rivals. Senators will have 16 hours for written questions that will be read by the chief justice. By late in the week, they are expected to hold a vote on whether or not to hear from any witnesses, according to the Associated Press. 

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US to evacuate Americans from Wuhan amid coronavirus outbreak

U.S. consulate staffers and some other Americans in Wuhan, China, will be evacuated to California on Wednesday amid the coronavirus outbreak that has killed more than 100. Wuhan is one of more than a dozen cities under tight lockdown as the government struggles to contain the virus. About 1,000 Americans are believed to be in Wuhan, although not all want to leave.  The State Department said some private, paying U.S. citizens would be added to the charter flight, which has a capacity of 240. Five coronavirus cases have been reported in the U.S, with no deaths.

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Remembering Kobe Bryant: NBA community honors basketball legend

More NBA arenas are expected to pay tribute to Kobe Bryant on Wednesday, three days after the basketball icon, his 13-year-old daughter Gianna and seven other people died in a helicopter crash in Southern California. On Tuesday, the NBA on TNT honored the Los Angeles Lakers great at Staples Center during an hour-long special as basketball greats shared emotional stories remembering their friend and teammate. The luxury helicopter, Sikorsky S-76B, lacked a key safety feature that the National Transportation Safety Board recommended, an official confirmed Tuesday. The NTSB had recommended it be required on large passenger-carrying choppers after a Texas crash in 2004, but that never happened. 

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Schools canceled on Grand Cayman Island as Caribbean reels from magnitude 7.7 quake

Public schools were canceled and water was cut off to much of Grand Cayman Island on Wednesday as the region reeled from a magnitude 7.7 earthquake in the Caribbean Sea and a series of strong aftershocks that shook a large stretch from Florida to Mexico on Tuesday. The initial tremor was centered 86 miles northwest of Montego Bay, Jamaica, and 87 miles west-southwest of Niquero, Cuba, the U.S. Geological Survey said. There were no reports of casualties or heavy damage. The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said any tsunami threats have passed and no other ones are foreseen. It was the fourth magnitude 7 or greater quake in the Caribbean since 2000, according to AccuWeather meteorologist Jesse Ferrell. The quake appeared to be on a fault boundary between the North American and Caribbean plates, said seismologist Lucy Jones.

Heads up: Satellites could crash in orbit above Pittsburgh

Two satellites may collide in space above Pittsburgh on Wednesday, a space tracking company has warned. With thousands of satellites orbiting Earth, every now and then, the orbit of one can cross the path of another. Space debris tracking company LeoLabs predicted that a decommissioned space telescope and an experimental U.S. payload would pass within about 30 yards or less of each other 559 miles over Pittsburgh Wednesday evening. The probability of a collision is about 1 in 100, according to LeoLabs. It isn’t clear whether a collision would pose a threat to people on the ground, astronauts onboard the International Space Station, other satellites orbiting our planet or the planet itself. 

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