Nightly Brief

Your Wednesday night briefing from the staff of Courthouse News

Top CNS stories for today including a rising star in the Democratic party, the son of first-year immigrants from India, Aftab Pureval now running nack and neck withlongtime Republican incumbent Steve Chabot; meanwhile, two crucial New Jersey districts appear headed to a purple midterm outcome; a federal grand jury indicts the man accused of carrying out Saturday Pittsburgh synagogue massacre on 44 counts, including hate crimes; accused Russian spy Maria Butina gets a green likght to subpoena the Washington, D.C., college where she attended graduate school; a new study finds that the widespread use of insect repellents are leading to a decline in salamanders; scientists also find that “exploding human consumption” has led to a 60 percent decline in wildlife populations in the past four decades; on top of all this, a new analysis suggests that models used to project future changes in extreme weather behavior may be underestimating the impact of climate change, and more.

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National

Democratic congressional hopeful Aftab Pureval greets supporters before a debate in Cincinnati on Wednesday, Oct. 24, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Koeninger/CNS).

1.) A rising star in the Democratic party, the son of first-year immigrants from India, Aftab Pureval jumped out of a car as he arrived at the theater of debate in a race for Ohio’s 1st Congressional District, grabbed a bullhorn and shouted encouragement to a throng of supporters. Backers for his opponent, longtime Republican incumbent Steve Chabot, were nowhere to be seen. Yet the two are in a perfect dead heat.

Downtown Passaic, New Jersey. (Photo via Wikipedia Commons)

2.) With all the talk of a Blue Wave this midterms, the color in two crucial New Jersey districts may be purple.

The Supreme Court in Washington, Tuesday, Oct. 9, 2018. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

3.) At the San Francisco Bar Association’s downtown headquarters Tuesday, a panel of experts weighed in on the cases they find most interesting, as well as how the newly constituted bench has been affected by the contentious confirmation process of its newest member, Justice Brett Kavanaugh.

(Photo by Charly Himmel/CNS).

4.) A federal grand jury on Wednesday indicted the man accused of carrying out Saturday Pittsburgh synagogue massacre on 44 counts, including hate crimes.

This photo shows a van with windows covered with an assortment of stickers in Well, Fla. Federal authorities took Cesar Sayoc into custody on Friday and confiscated his van, which appears to be the same one. (Lesley Abravanel via AP)

5.)  The Florida man who mailed bombs to 15 prominent critics of President Donald Trump may be hit with new charges, prosecutors suggested Tuesday in a letter to a federal judge.

Mariia Butina in Moscow, in a photo she posted to Facebook in October 2013.

6.) Accused Russian spy Maria Butina can subpoena the Washington, D.C., college where she attended graduate school, a federal judge ruled Wednesday.

Regional

7.) A year after a 10th Circuit panel tossed the challenge of Wyoming’s “ag-gag” law criminalizing the collection of research data on public and private land back to the trial court for reconsideration, a judge in the case on Monday found the law unconstitutional.

8.) Blaming meager state and local oversight, a numbing audit released Tuesday says California cut doctors and insurers “questionable” Medi-Cal checks worth $4 billion between 2014 and 2017, including $383,000 in premiums for a dead person.

Science

9.) Tying insect repellents to a decline in salamanders, a study out Wednesday reports that bug sprays are giving a counterintuitive boost to mosquito populations.

In this Sunday, March 18, 2018, photo, a one-horned rhinoceros walks inside the Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary in Assam state, India. (AP Photo/Anupam Nath)

10.) A sobering new report shows the impact “exploding human consumption” has on animals, finding that wildlife populations have declined globally by 60 percent in the past four decades.

Research & Polls

11.) Screaming some scary numbers for the holiday, public health experts warned that pedestrians are 43 percent more likely to be killed in a crash on Halloween than on other nights.

International

A pall of smoke turns large parts of the sky orange, with the ancient Acropolis hill at centre, as a forest fire burns in a mountainous area west of Athens, sending nearby residents fleeing, Monday, July 23, 2018. (AP Photo/Theodora Tongas)

12.) Models used to project future changes in extreme weather behavior may be underestimating the impact of climate change because they are unable to capture a phenomenon that freezes the jet stream – and the extreme weather it brings – in place.

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