Nightly Brief

Your Tuesday night briefing from the staff of Courthouse News

Top CNS stories for today including environmental lawyers saying a comprehensive climate change report released by 13 federal agencies will provide substantial assistance to plaintiffs in major climate change litigation currently pending in the federal courts; consumer confidence slipped in November as expectations of softening economic growth next year begin to take hold; the Supreme Court deals a blow to a critically endangered species of frog by reviving a lawsuit brought by loggers; accused Russian spy Maria Butina asks a federal judge to move her out of solitary confinement; California Democrats will enter 2019 with the largest Assembly majority in the modern history of the Golden State; a new Gallup poll finds six in 10 Americans disapprove of how President Donald Trump is handling his job; the Pew Research Center finds that for most Americans, the secret to happiness and purpose comes from family, and more.

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National

In this Nov. 23, 2018, photo Shauna Turlipof, left, and Kathi Bankes make their way through other Black Friday shoppers at the Viewmont Mall in Scranton, Pa. (Jake Danna Stevens/The Times-Tribune via AP, File)

1.) Consumer confidence slipped in November as expectations of softening economic growth next year began to take hold, the Conference Board said Tuesday.

2.) Dealing a blow to a critically endangered species of frog, the Supreme Court revived a lawsuit Tuesday brought by loggers whose deals could earn them millions.

Paul Manafort, President Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman, leaves court after a May 23, 2018, hearing in Washington. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)

3.) Former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort violated his plea agreement with the Special Counsel’s office by “repeatedly” lying to the FBI and prosecutors during a recent series of interviews, according to a brief filed in federal court Monday evening.

This Oct. 12, 2018 aerial photo shows devastation from Hurricane Michael over Mexico Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert, File)

4.) Environmental lawyers say a comprehensive climate change report released by 13 federal agencies will provide substantial assistance to plaintiffs in major climate change litigation currently pending in the federal courts.

(Associated Press/Photo by Michelle R. Smith)

5.) Remarking that this is a day the Trump administration wanted to avoid, a federal judge ushered in closing arguments Tuesday morning in a case where challengers say the census is being steered to stifle Democratic political representation for the next decade.

Maria Butina walks with Alexander Torshin on Sept. 7, 2012, while Torshin was a member of the Russian upper house of parliament in Moscow, Russia. (AP Photo/Pavel Ptitsin)
6.) Currently imprisoned at a detention center in Virginia, accused Russian spy Maria Butina asked a federal judge on Tuesday to move her out of solitary confinement as she awaits an upcoming hearing in Washington, D.C.

Regional

In this Nov. 6, 2018 photo, Georgia Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams addresses supporters during an election night watch party in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Amis)

7.) After narrowly losing their respective governor’s races in Florida and Georgia in the midterm election, Democrats Andrew Gillum and Stacey Abrams released a joint statement Tuesday saying they oppose President Donald Trump’s nominee for a North Carolina federal judgeship based on his record on voting rights.

8.) Capping off a thorough trampling of the GOP at the ballot box, California Democrats will enter 2019 with the largest Assembly majority in the modern history of the Golden State.

Appointed U.S. Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith, R-Miss., answers a question while Democrat Mike Espy, left, listens during their televised Mississippi U.S. Senate debate in Jackson, Miss., Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2018. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis, Pool)

9.) Dogged by controversy for her remark about her willingness to attend a public hanging, Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith, President Donald Trump at her side, told Mississippi voters on Monday: “What’s on the ballot is not just my name, Cindy Hyde-Smith, but your conservative values, that’s what’s on the ballot tomorrow.”

In this Jan. 5, 2018 photo, T.J. Cox, a candidate for the 21st U.S. Congressional District, speaks at a Democratic Party debate at the Gallo Center for the Arts in Modesto. (Andy Alfaro/Modesto Bee via AP)

10.) Democrats inched closer to sweeping all seven competitive congressional districts in California on Monday, as Democrat T.J. Cox took the lead over Republican incumbent David Valadao in the Central Valley’s 21st Congressional District.

Research & Polls

In this March 24, 2017 photo, President Donald Trump, flanked by Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, left, and Energy Secretary Rick Perry, is seen in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File)

11.) Six in 10 Americans disapprove of how President Donald Trump is handling his job, according to a new Gallup poll released Monday.

12.) For most Americans, the secret to happiness and purpose comes from family, according a pair of newly released surveys from the Pew Research Center.

International

A Ukrainian Army solder stands on duty with his heavy machine gun at an undisclosed location in eastern Ukraine on Monday. Tensions rose across Europe after Russian coast guard ships fired on Ukrainian Navy vessels Sunday. (AP photo/Alexander Shulman)

13.) Europe, a continent defined by catastrophic wars and the clash of empires, is talking about a future where it is a military might again, and on a war footing. Its top leaders are advocating something long viewed as highly unrealistic: A pan-European army relying on European-made and -owned weapons and machinery instead of American ones. A Europe defended by its own nuclear weapons.

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