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First Thing: House committee subpoenas key Trump aides

·6-min read
<span>Photograph: Jonathan Ernst/Reuters</span>
Photograph: Jonathan Ernst/Reuters

Good morning.

The House select committee scrutinizing the Capitol attack has subpoenaed Donald Trump’s chief of staff Mark Meadows along with three of the former president’s top aides.

The development is the most aggressive action the panel has taken since it made an array of records demands and records preservation requests last month. The advisers in question have valuable information about what Trump was doing and thinking during the insurrection.

  • Who was subpoenaed? Alongside Meadows, three of Trump’s closest aides have been summoned: the deputy White House chief of staff Dan Scavino, the former campaign manager Steve Bannon, and the former acting defense secretary’s chief of staff Kash Patel.

  • What will they be asked for? The select committee will seek documents and deposition testimonies about the Capitol attack, as well as other matters deemed relevant to the inquiry.

  • What’s next? The select committee is expected to authorize further subpoenas and schedule closed-door interviews with key witnesses, as well as the inquiry’s second public hearing.

Gabby Petito’s boyfriend charged with illegal bank card use

Gabby Petito’s boyfriend has been charged with unauthorised use of a bank card use as the manhunt for 23-year-old continues.

A warrant has been issued for Brian Laundrie’s arrest after a federal grand jury indicted him for illegal use of a Capital One Bank card and someone’s personal identification number.

  • What does the arrest warrant mean for the search? The warrant will allow law enforcement across the US to continue searching for Laundrie while the homicide investigation proceeds.

  • Who did the debit card belong to? We don’t know whose card it is or the nature of the charges. Laundrie has been indicted for allegedly using it to make unauthorized withdrawals or charges worth more than $1,000 during the time in which Petito went missing.

California to become first state to track violent deaths of LGBTQ+ people

California will become the first state to collect information about gender identity and sexual orientation in cases of violent deaths in an attempt to tackle the disproportionate risk of violence faced by LGBTQ+ people.

The governor, Gavin Newsom, signed a bill into law creating a three-year pilot program to gather such data on violent deaths. “We only know how best to address these important issues when we have the data,” Newsom said.

  • How much greater is the risk? LGBTQ+ people are almost four times more likely to be victims of violent crime, including rape, sexual assault, and aggravated or simple assault, according to a UCLA study.

  • Where will program be implemented? The law will establish a pilot program in up to six counties. Santa Clara, Los Angeles, Stanislaus and Fresno have agreed to participate.

In other news …

Nooruddin Turabi, one of the founders of the Taliban, says the movement will once again carry out punishments like executions and amputations of hands.
Nooruddin Turabi, one of the founders of the Taliban, says the movement will once again carry out punishments such as executions and amputations of hands. Photograph: Felipe Dana/AP
  • The Taliban will once again carry out executions and amputations of hands, Afghanistan’s new prisons minister and Taliban veteran, Nooruddin Turabi, has said, describing amputations as “necessary for security”.

  • Youth activists will stage their first global climate strike since the onset of the pandemic on Friday, weeks before the vital Cop26 climate summit.

  • The governor of Alaska has activated crisis standards of care as health systems hit a breaking point in the state with the highest rate of Covid.

  • Delivery workers in New York City have won a raft of new rights after lawmakers passed bills setting minimum pay, allowing workers to keep more of their tips, limiting journeys and ensuring access to bathrooms.

Stat of the day: 21,000- to 23,000-year-old tracks found in New Mexico

Human fossilized footprints at the White Sands national park in New Mexico
Human fossilized footprints at the White Sands national park in New Mexico Photograph: AP

Archaeologists believe they have uncovered the oldest known human footprints in North America, with tracks at the White Sands national park in New Mexico estimated to be between 21,000 and 23,000 years old. The discovery has been hailed as a “gamechanger”, as most scientists previously believed that the earliest appearance of humans in the Americas was 11,000 to 13,000 years ago.

Don’t miss this: the lack of attention given to missing and murdered Indigenous people

Red skirts are on display at the Arizona State Capitol in Phoenix to raise awareness for missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls
Red skirts are on display at the Arizona State Capitol in Phoenix to raise awareness for missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls. Photograph: Cheyanne Mumphrey/AP

With all eyes on the Gabby Petito case, many in the Indigenous community have felt a chasm between the way the media has approached the search for her killer and the lack of attention given to the scores of missing and murdered Native people. Although only 3% of Wyoming’s population is Indigenous, Native American victims accounted for 21% of all homicides between 2000 and 2020, a report found. Despite this, white victims were more likely to receive media coverage.

Climate check: is it time for a right to clean air?

Traffic in London at sunset
Traffic in London at sunset. Photograph: Marcin Rogozinski Zwei/Alamy

Amid a flurry of air pollution cases brought against the UK government and a related upcoming vote on New York’s state constitution, Dr Gary Fuller asks whether this piecemeal approach could be replaced with a right to clean air. While the right to a healthy environment is already recognised by 80% of UN members, the UK and US are not among them.

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Last Thing: our house was moved to a different town

After an iron ore mine in Sweden grew so vast it began to split the town of Malmberget in two, most people living near the pit packed up and left. Not Margot Isaksson though. Having bought their dream home, Isaksson and her husband decided to stick it out for as long as possible, even as the detonations in the mine shook the foundations of their house. When they realized the couple wouldn’t budge, even as Malmberget became a ghost town, the mining company sent an enormous crane to transplant their home.

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