Jan 24, 2020
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Impeachment Trial, Coronavirus, Australian Open: Your Friday Briefing

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Good morning.

We’re covering the latest from the impeachment trial (including a view of the Senate you probably haven’t seen) and the results of some high-profile matches at the Australian Open (spoilers ahead). It’s also Friday, so there’s a new news quiz.

House impeachment managers are expected to wrap up their opening statements today, before yielding the floor to President Trump’s defense team, which is scheduled to begin its presentation on Saturday. (Senate rules dictate a six-day schedule during impeachment proceedings.)

Eric Adams, the Brooklyn borough president and a possible candidate for mayor of New York, prompted a fierce debate this week when he said that newcomers to the city were “hijacking” apartments from longtime residents.

“Go back to Iowa,” Mr. Adams, who was born in Brooklyn, said on Monday. “You go back to Ohio. New York City belongs to the people that was here and made New York City what it is.”

He later walked back his comments, but they speak to “the broader problem of the invasion narrative in American politics and social thought,” our columnist writes.

Another angle: Andy Byford, the New York City subway chief who earned praise (and a nickname, “Train Daddy”) for improving the antiquated transit system, resigned on Thursday. He had increasingly clashed with Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who has final say over the subway.

F.B.I. agents spent years trying to understand Saudi Arabia’s connections to the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

Now a joint investigation by The Times Magazine and ProPublica explores what some agents discovered: a series of missed opportunities by the agency to resolve questions about the link to one of Washington’s closest allies.

Middle East peace plan: President Trump said he would soon release his long-awaited peace plan and invited Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel and his chief rival, Benny Gantz, to the White House next week to discuss it. Palestinian officials reiterated that they would treat any American proposal as dead on arrival.

“Jungle Prince of Delhi” update: After publishing an investigation last year about a reclusive family in India, The Times received tips from readers that helped unearth more information.

Snapshot: Above, part of the excavation of Herculaneum, an ancient Roman city that was destroyed in 79 A.D. in the eruption of Mount Vesuvius, which also buried Pompeii. Two studies published on Thursday offered new details about the victims.

In memoriam: Jim Lehrer, a PBS newsman for 36 years, gave viewers an alternative to network evening news programs, with in-depth interviews and news analysis. He died on Thursday at 85.

Australian Open results: Coco Gauff, 15, upset the reigning champion, Naomi Osaka, today, and Serena Williams was ousted by the 27th-seeded Wang Qiang of China.

News quiz: Did you follow the headlines this week? Test yourself.

Modern Love: This week’s column is by a woman whose father advised her, “Never count on a man.”

Late-night comedy: Trevor Noah said, “If you didn’t want to be bored at work, you shouldn’t have become a senator, O.K.? You should have stuck with racecar driving, Mitch McConnell.”

What we’re reading: This profile of Lizzo in Rolling Stone “reveals how hard the Grammy-nominated singer fought to become a new kind of superstar,” writes Remy Tumin of the Briefings team.

Cook: Pasta alla vodka is a quick, flavorful dish that leaves enough time to make a salad.

Watch: “The Gentlemen,” from the British director Guy Ritchie, features villains and supervillains, crime and punishment, winks and splatter-happy schtick, our film critic writes.

Read: A collection of reviews and essays by the New Yorker critic James Wood is among 12 books we recommend this week.

Smarter Living: Our Climate Fwd: newsletter usually offers a weekly tip on something you can do for the environment, but this week it’s looking at the bigger picture.

Of the many rules that govern the Senate impeachment trial of President Trump, there is none more incongruous than the one covering what food and drink is allowed on the floor during the proceedings: water, milk and candy. That’s it.

The candy is thanks to the “candy desk,” a relic now assigned to Senator Patrick Toomey of Pennsylvania. It’s on the Republican side of the chamber, in the back row on the aisle.

The tradition of the candy desk started in 1965 with Senator George Murphy, a sweet-toothed California Republican, and in recent years it has been controlled by lawmakers from Pennsylvania, which has the country’s biggest confectionery industry. The desk is currently stocked with Hershey bars with almonds, Rolo caramels, Milky Ways, 3 Musketeers bars, Palmer Peanut Butter Cups and Goldenberg’s Peanut Chews.

As for beverages, only water is permitted — both still and sparkling — though a legislative rule book does refer to a lawmaker who was permitted to ask for a glass of milk in 1966. Even though the proceedings have so far made for some very long days, coffee is not allowed.


That’s it for this briefing. See you next time.

— Chris


Thank you
Mark Josephson and Eleanor Stanford provided the break from the news. Adam Pasick of the Briefings team wrote today’s Back Story. You can reach us at briefing@nytimes.com.

P.S.
• We’re listening to “The Daily.” Today’s episode is about fracking natural gas, an issue that could win the swing state of Pennsylvania.
• New York Magazine profiled Michael Barbaro and the team behind “The Daily.”
• Here’s today’s Mini Crossword, and a clue: Use a stencil (five letters). You can find all our puzzles here.

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