World News

Senate Democrats Plan To Boycott Amy Coney Barrett’s Committee Vote

Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee plan to boycott Thursday’s committee vote on Amy Coney Barrett’s Supreme Court nomination as a protest against Republican efforts to rush her through before the election.

The plan hasn’t been finalized yet, according to a Democratic aide, but Democrats are preparing to fill their empty seats with poster-sized photos of people who would be hurt by Barrett potentially casting a deciding vote against the Affordable Care Act. These would be the same pictures of people Democrats had on display during Barrett’s confirmation hearing last week.

Democrats also intend to hold two press conferences to push back on Barrett’s confirmation ― one on the Capitol steps and one on the Supreme Court steps. They will go to one or both of these pressers during the committee vote, according to the Democratic aide.

“Throughout the hearings last week, committee Democrats demonstrated the damage a Justice Barrett would do – to health care, reproductive freedoms, the ability to vote, and other core rights that Americans cherish. We will not grant this process any further legitimacy by participating in a committee markup of this nomination just twelve days before the culmination of an election that is already underway,” Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and his caucus said in a statement Wednesday afternoon, after HuffPost’s story went up.

A boycott will delight progressives, who have been clamoring for a big fight by Democrats over Barrett’s confirmation. It won’t stop Republicans from advancing Barrett’s nomination, though.

Feinstein has come under particular criticism and scrutiny from her own party. She undercut Democrats’ message that the proceedings were a “sham” and “illegitimate” by praising both Barrett and committee chair Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.).

“This has been one of the best set of hearings that I’ve participated in,” Feinstein said at the conclusion of the hearings last week. “It leaves one with a lot of hopes, a lot of questions and even some ideas perhaps of good bipartisan legislation we can put together.”

Both NARAL Pro-Choice America and Demand Justice, a progressive judicial advocacy group, called on the party to replace Feinstein as the top Democrat on the committee. 

Schumer also said he had “a long and serious talk” with her but refused to give more details.

Asked Wednesday what would happen if Democrats don’t show up to Barrett’s hearing, Graham said, “We’ll vote the nominee out.”

This story has been updated with comment from Schumer.

Igor Bobic and Amanda Terkel contributed reporting to this story.

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World News

Mitt Romney Voted for President — but Not for Donald Trump

Utah Sen. Mitt Romney, a onetime Republican presidential candidate turned Trump enemy, told reporters on Wednesday that he has already cast his vote in the 2020 general election — but he did not vote for Donald Trump

“I did not vote for President Trump," Romney, 73, told CNN reporter Manu Raju, who shared the news on Twitter.

Romney's office confirmed his vote to PEOPLE but declined to say who he did vote for or why.

A former leader of his party, Romney has a fractured relationship with Republicans' current standard-bearer. A lifelong conservative who himself ran as the Republican nominee for president in 2012, Romney has frequently butted heads with Trump, 74, since the latter came in to office.

In the lead-up to the 2016 election, Romney slammed Trump as a "a phony" and "a fraud," urging voters to take a deeper look at the then-businessman's record.

"He's playing members of the American public for suckers: He gets a free ride to the White House, and all we get is a lousy hat," Romney said in early 2016.

Once Trump secured the Republican nomination and, eventually, the White House, the imprimatur of the presidency seemed to mend their relationship — at least, temporarily.

Trump considered Romney for a position as secretary of state (with photos of the two dining together going viral) and ultimately backed Romney in his 2018 successful Senate run, with the former Utah governor praising Trump's first year in office just months later.

But the civility had a shelf life.

In 2019, Romney issued a strongly-worded critique of Trump's character in the Washington Post.

In an even more stunning move, the senator broke ranks with his GOP colleagues this February to vote in support of convicting and removing Trump from office during Trump's impeachment trial over his Ukraine scandal. (Trump responded by calling him a “pompous ‘ass’ “ and more recently said he was “a man with very little talent or political skill.”)

Earlier this month, Romney singled out the president for failing to condemn the far-right conspiracy theory QAnon.

In a separate statement, he urged politicians across the spectrum to tone down hateful rhetoric in the weeks leading up to the election.

"Leaders must tone it down," Romney said in his Oct. 13 statement. "I’m troubled by our politics, as it has moved away from spirited debate to a vile, vituperative, hate-filled morass that is unbecoming of any free nation — let alone the birthplace of modern democracy."

Despite his continued disavowal of Trump, Romney's voting record in the Senate largely tracks the president. And he recently announcing that he intended to vote to confirm Trump's nominee to the Supreme Court, Amy Coney Barrett, later this month.

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World News

GOP senators question ActBlue's source of small-dollar donations as Democrats see cash surge

Joe Biden, DNC haul in more than $300 million in August fundraising

Insight from Steve Cortes, Trump campaign senior strategy adviser.

Several Republican senators have raised suspicions in recent days about ActBlue, the main platform for donations to Democratic candidates and causes, amid a record-breaking surge in contributions. 

Among the GOP lawmakers questioning ActBlue's source of small-dollar contributions is Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham, who's facing a shockingly competitive reelection race in South Carolina against Democratic challenger Jaime Harrison. 

During the third quarter of the year, Harrison raised $57 million — the highest quarterly fundraising total for any Senate candidate in U.S. history. Graham raked in about $28 million during that same time period. 


“Where’s all this money coming from ActBlue coming from?" Graham asked during an interview with The Hill. "How easy would it be to just have a bunch of pre-paid credit cards?” 

ActBlue, a nonprofit technology company, was founded in 2004 to channel small-dollar donations to Democratic candidates and liberal groups. From the beginning of July through the end of September, the platform processed about $1.5 billion in contributions, about the same amount it processed for the entirety of the 2018 election cycle. It also far exceeded the $623.5 million fundraised by its Republican equivalent, WinRed, during that same period.

“Some of these shadowy figures out there running ads, is there any foreign influence afoot?” Graham mulled. “Where is all this money coming from? You don’t have to report it if it’s below $200,” he added, referring to campaign finance laws that do not require donations below $200 to be documented.

“When this election is over with, I hope there will be a sitting down and finding out, ‘OK, how do we control this?’ It just seems to be an endless spiral," Graham continued. 


ActBlue reports every contribution, including those under $200; every federal donation can be verified on the FEC's website. Fox News reached out to ActBlue for comment and will update thist story as needed.

Graham is not alone in questioning ActBlue's source of donations. Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, whose Democratic opponent MJ Hegar raised nearly twice as much as him in the third quarter, also said a probe into the group's small-donor networks would be "worthwhile."

“It’s probably a good idea,” he told The Hill. “My understanding is that any donation under $200 they don’t even have to identify the donor so obviously there’s a lot of opportunity for mischief. So, I think that would be worthwhile.'

Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., echoed that sentiment, noting he had called for an investigation into Hillary Clinton's small-dollar donor network during the 2016 presidential campaign. 


“I was always concerned about it during the Clinton campaign because you had all these allegations of bundling and all these donations coming in just under $200. Anytime you set up these types of systems people can figure out how to exploit the systems,” he said, adding: “I think it’s probably a very legitimate avenue for inquiry."

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Black Friday 2020: The best early deals, our expert buying advice, and all of your FAQs answered

When you buy through our links, we may earn money from our affiliate partners. Learn more.

Black Friday is one of the most anticipated shopping events of the year, and this year's Black Friday is shaping up to be unlike any that came before it.

Below, learn everything you need to know about Black Friday 2020, including the important dates to know, where to shop, what to buy, and the best deals our team of expert product reviewers expects to see this November. 

The best early Black Friday deals available now

What is Black Friday? 

Black Friday is an annual sales event that traditionally happens at the end of November and, historically, marks the beginning of the holiday shopping season. The event is one of the biggest shopping holidays of the year — sales are so high that the day can push a retailer into "the black," or solvency.

Shoppers can expect thousands of deals to crop up on the days leading up to and following the big sales event. That said, many retailers often wait until the big day to drop the best deals.

Is Black Friday 2020 cancelled?

No, but it will be unlike any Black Friday that came before it. This year, Black Friday will be longer and more online than ever.

Nearly every major retailer will offer deals and exclusive offers throughout the month of November, if they haven't started already. 

With the ongoing pandemic, the in-store Black Friday experience will look a lot different than in previous years. It's hard to imagine seeing the deluge of people scrambling for doorbuster deals happening this year with safety restrictions in place.

When is Black Friday 2020?

Black Friday is always the Friday after Thanksgiving. This year, Black Friday falls on November 27. 

However, due to increased online shopping and subsequent supply-chain delays related to the COVID-19 pandemic, several storefronts, including Walmart and Best Buy, have augmented their schedules. For instance, Best Buy launched its "Black Friday" sale alongside Amazon Prime Day. The electronics retailer decided to begin its sale early this year "to help shoppers start their shopping season early — and safely." 

What time does Black Friday start?

Technically speaking, Black Friday starts at 12:01 a.m. local time for online retailers. However, Black Friday sales start whenever each retailer decides their sales will go live.

From what we've seen so far, several retailers will be releasing new deals every week in 2020. 

  • Amazon: While Amazon hasn't released when it will release its official, wide-ranging Black Friday sale, it's offering several one-day offers during the lead-up. Last year, Amazon's deals started online at midnight on November 22.
  • Best Buy: Stores will be closed Thanksgiving Day, but the retailer is running its 'Prep for the Holidays Black Friday' sale for the whole month of November. 
  • Gamestop: While Gamestop has yet to announce its Black Friday sale dates, we do know that all stores will be closed for Thanksgiving Day and that the retailer is planning to offer deals ahead of November 28.
  • Home Depot:
  • Kohl's: Stores will be closed Thanksgiving Day, but the retailer's sale is slated to start on Black Friday, November 28.
  • Macy's: Macy's is currently mum on when it will kick off its Black Friday sale. Last year, Macy's opened from 5 p.m. Thanksgiving Day to 2 a.m. November 29 of last year. They reopened at 6 a.m. November 29 of last year.
  • Nordstrom: Last year, stores opened at 10 a.m. November 29 and online sales started on November 27. This year, we expect to see Nordstrom take a more online approach. 
  • Target: The company is offering new deals every week of November for Black Friday this year, with weekly ads dropping each Thursday. The first ad will be released on October 29.
  • Walmart: Walmart is holding 'Black Friday Deals for Days' events this year. Three events are taking place starting as early as November 4 both online and in stores, with a few online-only sales.  
  • Wayfair: Last year, Wayfair sales began online at 9 a.m. ET November 22. 

How long do Black Friday sales last?

Don't be fooled by the name that suggests it's a single day. It's most definitely not. It's more like a shopping season that begins in early November. 

Black Friday sales generally start days or weeks in advance of the actual shopping event and continue on until Cyber Monday. Better yet, some retailers hold their deals until well after both events to further boost the entire December shopping season.

What should you buy on Black Friday? 

Since it falls a few weeks before the gift-giving season, Black Friday provides excellent opportunities to buy — and save on all your holiday gifts  — before the last-minute rush. 

It's nearly guaranteed that you'll get great value for your money on certain products during Black Friday — but some tend to see better discounts at other times of the year. If you go in knowing what you're looking for, you're less likely to be ripped off by a fancy-looking coupon or to spend money on products you don't need.

Shoppers can expect tons of great deals — including so-called "doorbusters" — online before and the days following Black Friday. During the event, prices will drop to all-time lows, often beating out prices we see over the course of the year. The sale covers every product category: tech, home and kitchen, fashion, and smart home. 

This Black Friday, shoppers should expect to see similar offers to the ones we saw on Amazon Prime Day, except more wide-ranging.

We recommend focusing on the following product categories if you want the best deals: 

  • TVs
  • Smart home devices
  • Gaming consoles and video games
  • Kitchen appliances

Historically, Black Friday has been a great time to purchase big-ticket electronics — especially larger TVs. Whether you're looking for a top-of-the-line Samsung set or LG OLED, or a budget-friendly TCL or Hisense model, Black Friday will likely deliver several deals.

Much like Amazon Prime Day, we expect to see tons of discounts on smart home products. We'll likely see Amazon Echo products drop to their lowest prices ever, plus several discounts and bundles on Google's recently released products.

Black Friday happens after the latest Xbox and Playstation consoles are released. While we're unlikely to see any markdowns on the consoles, we may see a few bundles crop up. We will likely see modest discounts on games for all consoles, and huge bundles for last-generation consoles. 

If you're looking for a kitchen upgrade, Black Friday is a great time to shop. We'll likely see discounts on Instant Pot pressure cookers, KitchenAid appliances, pots and pans, plus everything else you'll want for the upcoming holiday season.

Of course, the deals found during Black Friday are incredibly wide-ranging. While we expect there to be several deals on diapers, toilet paper, or other household essentials and toiletries, please be careful not to over-stock on supplies during a pandemic.

Is Black Friday or Cyber Monday better?

It's complicated, and it matters much less this year.

For those unfamiliar, Cyber Monday traditionally comes three days after Black Friday, or the following Monday after. However, we've seen Black Friday and Cyber Monday slowly merge and expand to a weeklong, or even a monthlong affair. Different products receive better discounts on each day, and the deals that each retailer offers will vary.

This year, with most Americans shopping online, it's more critical for shoppers to know where and what time to shop, not what day. 

A good rule of thumb to follow: If you think you see a good deal, (e.g. one we recommend) create the order as soon as possible. While you can always cancel or return a product, it's impossible to take advantage of an inactive, or expired deal.

Suppose you purchase a discounted product during Black Friday and see a more significant markdown at another retailer come Cyber Monday. Don't sweat it.

You can ask the original storefront to match the price (some automatically refund you the difference), or you can return or cancel the order, then place a new order with the better price. Some orders won't even ship during the weekend, which makes it easy to cancel orders.

For those who can shop in-person during Black Friday, we've found that it's better to shop on Black Friday in these situations:

  • For expensive products
  • For major stores
  • For this year's products
  • If you plan to shop in stores (if it's available in your area)

It should go without saying, but this year's in-store experience will be a lot different from the one last year. If you so choose to shop Black Friday in-person, make sure to read up on the safety guidelines provided by each storefront.

What stores have Black Friday deals? 

Outside of a few notable exceptions like REI, nearly every major retailer and direct-to-consumer company will offer markdowns during the event. Shoppers should expect deals from Walmart, Best Buy, Dell, Amazon, Adorama,  Lowe's, Home Depot, and more.

As we do every Black Friday, we are sifting through all of the offers and rounding up the best deals from your favorite retailers. 

Will there be Black Friday shipping delays?

Shipping delays and major shopping holidays go hand in hand, and this year is no exception. Experts suggest that consumers may see low inventory problems and shipping, during Black Friday and the weeks following. 

While we do expect shipping delays, several retailers, including Walmart, Target, and Best Buy, are hoping to alleviate some of that stress by offering in-store pickup and contactless curbside pickup. This means shoppers can grab their orders at a nearby location if the store has it in stock. 

When do Black Friday ads come out?

Every year, shoppers eagerly await Black Friday advertising to get a sneak peek at the deals each retailer will over. Shoppers use these "ad scans" to help create their Black Friday game plan.

While there isn't a release schedule available, a smattering of retailers has already posted their advertising online, the most notable being Walmart. We'll update this section to include all of the available ad scans as soon as they become available.

Here are the most important ad scans currently available: 

  • Walmart: To find the ad scan, first find your local Walmart via the local directory. Once you get to the "Store Overview" page, find the "Weekly Ad" section.

How we select the best Black Friday deals

  • We only choose products that meet our high standard of coverage and that we've either used ourselves or researched carefully.
  • We'll compare the prices among top retailers such as Amazon, Best Buy, Target, and Walmart and include only the deals that are better than all others offered (not including promotional discounts that come from using certain credit cards). 
  • All deals will be at least 20% off, with the occasional exception for products that are rarely discounted or provide an outsize value.

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You can purchase syndication rights to this story here.

Disclosure: This post is brought to you by the Insider Reviews team. We highlight products and services you might find interesting. If you buy them, we get a small share of the revenue from the sale from our commerce partners. We frequently receive products free of charge from manufacturers to test. This does not drive our decision as to whether or not a product is featured or recommended. We operate independently from our advertising sales team. We welcome your feedback. Email us at [email protected]

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Crowdstrike CEO sees opportunites in the cloud

New York (CNN Business)Big Tech companies have been the hottest stocks on Wall Street all year, pre- and post-pandemic. But some experts think it’s time for a new crop of dynamic up-and-comers in fields like virtual reality and health tech to take center stage in your portfolio.

Part of the problem is that the run-up in the FAANG stock prices has been so massive that they’re taking over the entire market. Facebook (FB), Amazon (AMZN), Apple (AAPL), Netflix (NFLX) and Google owner Alphabet (GOOGL) — as well as Microsoft (MSFT) and Tesla (TSLA) — are now worth a combined $7.7 trillion.
The first six now make up nearly a quarter of the entire value of the S&P 500 (Tesla is still not in the index), and managers say that’s getting a bit stale for investors.

    “We’ve reached an unprecedented level of concentration in the market. It’s not really passive investing if you’re putting money into an index fund and you’re only getting a handful of stocks,” said Don Townswick, director of equity strategies and portfolio management at Conning.
    So investors need to look beyond the top tech stocks — and more at smaller, rapidly growing, innovative companies that can be the sector’s next leaders, one fund manager says.

    “Investors still need exposure to growth, but they need to separate giant tech from more innovative tech,” said Michael Loukas, principal and CEO of TrueMark Investments, which runs the actively managed TrueShares Technology, AI & Deep Learning (LRNZ) exchange traded fund.
    Loukas is focusing on emerging leaders in dynamic industries like virtual and augmented reality, cybersecurity and health care tech, he told CNN Business in an interview. The earnings and sales growth for these smaller companies is expected to be much higher than for the larger, more mature giants of tech.
    Unity Software shares surge 44% in Wall Street debut as IPO market sizzles
    “You want to invest in areas that had tailwinds before the lockdown that have only accelerated since then. These are not more consumer companies like Apple, Amazon and Google. These are fundamentally incorporated into the machinery of big businesses,” Loukas said.
    ‘You can’t just own tech through the Nasdaq-100 QQQ fund,” he added. “That’s basically FAANG.”

    Cybersecurity stocks could be among the big winners

    Loukas said his fund has sizable holdings in cybersecurity firms Zscaler (ZS) and Crowdstrike (CRWD), data monitoring company Datadog (DDOG) and authentication provider Okta (OKTA).
    But the fund is also making bets on the burgeoning gaming and esports business through an investment in newly public Unity Software and is buying innovative health care tech companies Guardant Health (GH), Schrodinger (SDGR) and Berkeley Lights as well.
    Health care CEO does 180 Zoom calls in three days to help take company public
    Connings’ Townswick added that there are smaller, nimbler tech stocks that are probably undervalued and could do well even if the FAANGs, Microsoft and Tesla finally cool off.
    “Eventually the market will reward a broader set of companies,” Townswick said.

    Big Tech under pressure

    Meanwhile, Big Tech certainly isn’t helped by recent regulatory and political actions like the government’s antitrust case against Google.
    Apple, Amazon and Facebook are already under fire from both Republicans and Democrats and that may not change regardless of whether Joe Biden wins the presidential election or Donald Trump gets a second term.
    “One of the few bipartisan issues of agreement is that tech companies should be regulated more. That sets things up for a very different environment for big techs,” said Max Gokhman, head of asset allocation for Pacific Life Fund Advisors.
    “There are better opportunities with mid-sized tech companies. Antitrust regulation is designed to help smaller rivals,” he added, saying that smaller cloud firms that compete with the likes of Amazon, Google and Microsoft could benefit.

      Gokhman also said smaller tech firms are more attractive than big techs right now because they are cheaper and more domestically focused.
      So smaller techs would benefit more from the expected eventual round of new stimulus from Washington that could come — either shortly before or just after the election.
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      Shark Tank investor Kevin O'Leary says the market 'just doesn't care' about who wins the US election

      “Shark Tank”/ABC

      • Kevin O’Leary told CNBC on Wednesday that markets are not concerned with who wins the election because they know that a $2 trillion stimulus package will be released regardless of who wins.
      • “This is the most fascinating election the American economy has ever seen because the market just doesn’t care,” the investor said. 
      • He added that policies are unlikely to change in the near term if Biden wins because the former vice president’s “hands will be tied” around the unemployment rate. 
      • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

      Kevin O’Leary said that markets are not concerned with who wins the US presidential election in a CNBC interview released Wednesday.

      The Shark Tank investor and O’Shares ETFs chairman said that there will be a $2 trillion stimulus with either candidate, and that’s really what the market is trading on right now. 

      “This is the most fascinating election the American economy has ever seen because the market just doesn’t care,” O’Leary said. 

      He also said Joe Biden is unlikely to change policies immediately if he wins the election because the unemployment rate will still be at 9%. 

      Read more: An investment chief overseeing $23 billion breaks down 2 critical election-linked risks facing the market – and shares the smartest way to turn them both into profit opportunities

      “You got 9% of the economy unemployed. I think his hands are tied. I don’t think he does very much of anything, I think the policies remain the same,” the investor said. Even with a “blue tide” where Democrats gain control of the White House and Congress, policies are unlikely to change until the midterm elections two years down the road, he added. 

      The market is expecting increased tensions between the two largest economies of the world too, O’Leary said.

      The investor added: “If you’re the Chinese government you’d rather have Biden, but if Trump wins again … bar the doors on China relations, he’s going to put the screws down even harder and the market’s ready for that too.”

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      World News

      Biden enters final stretch with large cash advantage over Trump

      Dem strategist: Biden’s big fundraising numbers counter his low number of in-person events

      Democratic strategist Kevin Walling tells ‘America’s Newsroom’ Joe Biden’s fundraising numbers show his voter enthusiasm

      Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden had nearly three times as much cash in his campaign coffers than President Trump at the start of this month, according to the latest fundraising filings from both major party nominees.

      The former vice president’s campaign had more than $177 million cash on hand as of Sept. 30, according to a filing with the Federal Election Commission on Tuesday evening. Trump’s reelection campaign reported $63.1 million in the bank.


      Biden’s large fundraising advantage the past couple of months is fueling the disparity. Biden hauled in $281 million in September, more than three times the $81 million raised by the president. And Trump’s report indicates that his campaign spent more money than it raised in September.

      Spotlighting the president’s cash disadvantage, Trump took a few hours out of his busy campaigning schedule over the weekend to headline a top-dollar fundraising event in California that aides told Fox News brought in roughly $11 million for his reelection bid.

      President Donald Trump arrives for a campaign rally at Erie International Airport, Tom Ridge Field in Erie, Pa, Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2020. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

      But the president’s campaign emphasizes that they’ve got enough in their coffers to win the election.

      "The Trump campaign has all the resources we need going into the home stretch of this election," campaign spokeswoman Samantha Zager highlighted in a statement on Tuesday night.


      And Trump campaign communications director Tim Murtaugh tweeted late Thursday, after the campaign and the Republican National Committee (RNC) released their combined fundraising figures, that “President Trump hits final stretch with strength, resources, record & huge ground game needed to spread message and secure re-election.”

      Those numbers showed the Trump campaign and the RNC with a combined $251 million in the bank as of the end of September. A day earlier the Biden campaign and the Democratic National Committee reported a combined $432 million cash on hand.

      Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden arrives to speak during a campaign event at Riverside High School in Durham, N.C., Sunday, Oct. 18, 2020. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

      The financial advantage has allowed Biden’s campaign to vastly outspend the Trump team last month in the ad wars. Biden’s campaign spent nearly $148 million in September compared to $56 million for Trump’s team, according to figures from Advertising Analytics, a top ad tracking firm.

      While campaign cash is a crucial metric, money isn’t everything. Four years ago, Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton outraised and outspent Trump, and still lost the race for the White House.

      “As Hillary Clinton proved when she outspent us 2-to-1 in 2016, no amount of money can buy the presidency – voters have to be enthusiastic about casting their ballot for a candidate, and that’s only happening for President Trump,” Zager noted.

      And she emphasized that the Trump campaign is “running a comprehensive campaign that incorporates our massive ground game, travel to key states, and ads on digital, TV, and radio.”

      The Trump campaign has spotlighted in recent months that their large ground organization in the key battlegrounds – which was assembled over the last couple of years – is light-years ahead of the organization built by the Biden team the past seven months.

      The president earlier this week appeared to downplay the fundraising deficit. Trump told supporters at a campaign rally on Monday in Arizona that he could be “the greatest fundraiser in history” if he tapped into the business sector. The president explained that he’s avoided doing so because, he says, he would be “totally compromised” by the donors.


      The president told his supporters, “All I have to do is call up the head of every Wall Street firm, head of every major company, the head of every major energy company, ‘Do me a favor, send me $10 million for my campaign.’ ‘Yes, sir.’ They say the only thing is, ‘Why didn't you ask for more, sir?’”

      Fox News’ Thomas Barrabi contributed to this report.

      Source: Read Full Article


      Up to 100 jobs at risk as Langham’s brasserie teeters on brink

      Langan’s Brasserie, the London restaurant once co-owned by the actor Michael Caine and famous as a 1980s celebrity haunt frequented by diners as diverse as Princess Margaret, Muhammad Ali and Mick Jagger, is teetering on the brink of administration.

      Up to 100 jobs are at risk at the brasserie, which was opened in 1976 by Caine, and the restaurateur and bon viveur Peter Langan.

      The eatery was a favourite destination for the rich and famous, and especially was known for the antics of Langan, who would climb on tables and crawl beneath them to nibble his customers’ ankles, and who once put out a fire in the kitchen with vintage champagne.

      The restaurant, in Stratton Street, Mayfair, central London, has filed a notice of intention to appoint administrators, a legal measure that provides 10 working days of protection from creditors as advisors examine options for the business.

      The brasserie has been battered by Covid-19 restrictions and a lack of tourists in the capital; it also faces the end of the UK government furlough scheme, due to end on 31 October.

      The financial advisory firm Begbies Traynor has been lined up as potential administrator and is understood to be in talks with a number of possible rescuers, thought to include Richard Caring, owner of The Ivy restaurant and a string of other upscale London diners including Scott’s.

      UK retail and hospitality job cuts on back of Covid-19 crisis

      Marston’s – 2,150 jobs
      15 October: Marston’s  – the brewer which owns nearly 1,400 pubs, restaurants, cocktail bars and hotels across the UK – said it would cut 2,150 jobs due to fresh Covid restrictions. The company has more than 14,000 employees. 

      Whitbread – 6,000 jobs
      22 September: Whitbread, which owns the Premier Inn, Beefeater and Brewers Fayre chains, said it would cut 6,000 jobs at its hotels and restaurants, almost one in five of its workforce

      Pizza Express – 1,100 jobs
      7 September: The restaurant chain confirms the closure of 73 restaurants as part of a rescue restructure deal.

      Costa Coffee – 1,650 jobs
      3 September: The company, which was bought by Coca-Cola two years ago, is cutting up to 1,650 jobs in its cafes, more than one in 10 of its workforce. The assistant store manager role will go across all shops.

      Pret a Manger – 2,890 jobs
      27 August: The majority of the cuts are focused on the sandwich chain’s shop workers, but 90 roles will be lost in its support centre teams. The cuts include the 1,000 job losses announced on 6 July.

      Marks & Spencer – 7,000 jobs
      18 August: Food, clothing and homewares retailer cuts jobs in central support centre, regional management and stores.

      M&Co – 400 jobs
      5 August: M&Co, the Renfrewshire-based clothing retailer, formerly known as Mackays, will close 47 of 215 stores.

      WH Smith – 1,500 jobs
      5 August: The chain, which sells products ranging from sandwiches to stationery, will cut jobs mainly in UK railway stations and airports. 

      Dixons Carphone – 800 jobs
      4 August: Electronics retailer Dixons Carphone is cutting 800 managers in its stores as it continues to reduce costs.

      DW Sports – 1,700 jobs at risk
      3 August: DW Sports fell into administration, closing its retail website immediately and risking the closure of its 150 gyms and shops.

      Marks & Spencer – 950 jobs
      20 July: The high street stalwart cuts management jobs in stores as well as head office roles related to property and store operations.

      Ted Baker – 500 jobs
      19 July: About 200 roles to go at the fashion retailer’s London headquarters, the Ugly Brown Building, and the remainder at stores.

      Azzurri – 1,200 jobs
      17 July: The owner of the Ask Italian and Zizzi pizza chains closes 75 restaurants and makes its Pod lunch business delivery only

      Burberry – 500 jobs worldwide
      15 July: Total includes 150 posts in UK head offices as luxury brand tries to slash costs by £55m after a slump in sales during the pandemic.

      Boots – 4,000 jobs
      9 July: Boots is cutting 4,000 jobs – or 7% of its workforce – by closing 48 opticians outlets and reducing staff at its head office in Nottingham as well as some management and customer service roles in stores.

      John Lewis – 1,300 jobs
      9 July: John Lewis announced that it is planning to permanently close eight of its 50 stores, including full department stores in Birmingham and Watford, with the likely loss of 1,300 jobs.

      Celtic Manor – 450 jobs
      9 July: Bosses at the Celtic Collection in Newport, which staged golf’s Ryder Cup in 2010 and the 2014 Nato Conference, said 450 of its 995 workers will lose their jobs.

      Pret a Manger – 1,000 jobs
      6 July: Pret a Manger is to permanently close 30 branches and could cut at least 1,000 jobs after suffering “significant operating losses” as a result of the Covid-19 lockdown

      Casual Dining Group – 1,900 jobs
      2 July: The owner of the Bella Italia, Café Rouge and Las Iguanas restaurant chains collapsed into administration, with the immediate loss of 1,900 jobs. The company said multiple offers were on the table for parts of the business but buyers did not want to acquire all the existing sites and 91 of its 250 outlets would remain permanently closed.

      Arcadia – 500 jobs
      1 July: Arcadia, Sir Philip Green’s troubled fashion group – which owns Topshop, Miss Selfridge, Dorothy Perkins, Burton, Evans and Wallis – said in July 500 head office jobs out of 2,500 would go in the coming weeks.

      SSP Group – 5,000 jobs
      1 July: The owner of Upper Crust and Caffè Ritazza is to axe 5,000 jobs, about half of its workforce, with cuts at its head office and across its UK operations after the pandemic stalled domestic and international travel.

      Harrods – 700 jobs
      1 July: The department store group is cutting one in seven of its 4,800 employees because of the “ongoing impacts” of the pandemic.

      Harveys – 240 jobs
      30 June: Administrators made 240 redundancies at the furniture chain Harveys, with more than 1,300 jobs at risk if a buyer cannot be found.

      TM Lewin – 600 jobs
      30 June: Shirtmaker TM Lewin closed all 66 of its outlets permanently, with the loss of about 600 jobs.

      Monsoon Accessorize – 545 jobs
      11 June: The fashion brands were bought out of administration by their founder, Peter Simon, in June, in a deal in which 35 stores closed permanently and 545 jobs were lost.

      Mulberry – 470 jobs
      8 June: The luxury fashion and accessories brand is to cut 25% of its global workforce and has started a consultation with the 470 staff at risk.

      The Restaurant Group – 3,000 jobs
      3 June: The owner of dining chains such as Wagamama and Frankie & Benny’s has closed most branches of Chiquito and all 11 of its Food & Fuel pubs, with another 120 restaurants to close permanently. Total job losses could reach 3,000.

      Clarks – 900 jobs
      21 May: Clarks plans to cut 900 office jobs worldwide as it grapples with the growth of online shoe shopping as well as the pandemic.

      Oasis and Warehouse – 1,800 jobs
      30 April: The fashion brands were bought out of administration by the restructuring firm Hilco in April, with all of their stores permanently closed and 1,800 jobs lost.

      Cath Kidston – 900 jobs
      21 April: More than 900 jobs were cut immediately at the retro retail label Cath Kidston after the company said it was permanently closing all 60 of its UK stores.

      Debenhams – 4,000 jobs
      9 April: At least 4,000 jobs will be lost at Debenhams in its head office and closed stores after its collapse into administration in April, for the second time in a year.

      Laura Ashley – 2,700 jobs
      17 March: Laura Ashley collapsed into administration, with 2,700 job losses, and said rescue talks had been thwarted by the pandemic.

      Langan lined the walls of the restaurant with work by artists including David Hockney, a regular at the restaurant, who helped design the menus turning them into collectors’ pieces, and Patrick Caulfield.

      The Irish restaurateur had a reputation for throwing out customers, but the restaurant, which had no dress code, pulled in stars such as Elizabeth Taylor, Marlon Brando and Mick Jagger in 1970s and 1980s to dine on its signature dish of spinach soufflé with anchovy sauce.

      Caine reportedly said of Langan: “Peter stumbles around in a cloud of his own vomit and is a complete social embarrassment. You would have a more interesting conversation with a cabbage.” Langan died in 1988 aged 47.

      The chef Richard Shepherd, who joined Langan’s in 1977 and was instrumental in its survival for more than 40 years, retains an interest in the business, although it is controlled by the entrepreneur Vijay Malde and former Bolton Wanderers chairman Ken Anderson.

      Langan’s closed temporarily in March just ahead of high-street lockdowns. It has not reopened. Staff were retained under the furlough job protection scheme but have been told their jobs are at risk now.

      Restaurateurs said London’s dining establishments were under serious strain from the loss of tourists and high-spending shoppers during the pandemic. New coronavirus restrictions on meeting other households indoors and the advice to avoid public transport were also taking a toll.

      One rival restaurant group said it had thousands of cancellations last weekend as “tier 2” restrictions were imposed; another said that many restaurants in London were experiencing a 75% slump in takings.

      One said Langan’s might struggle to find a buyer. “All restaurants have been struggling since March. After lockdown we were starting to see a recovery when more restrictions came in and knocked it for six.

      “Restaurants like Langan’s? How can they survive without regular visitors from out of town who want a relaxing long lunch or dinne? Those people are not around any more. London has been crippled and on the course we are on it could take a decade or more for it to recover.”

      Other London landmarks including Simpsons on the Strand, several Brasserie Blancs, and Le Caprice restaurant have also kept their doors closed since the lockdown in England ended. The Soho restaurant Polpo went into administration as did the dining chains Carluccio’s and Gourmet Burger Kitchen.

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      Nikola surges 13% after GM president reiterates confidence in partnership plans


      • Nikola leaped as much as 13% on Wednesday after General Motors President Mark Reuss said he still sees a path forward for a partnership between the two automakers.
      • Appearing on Bloomberg TV and CNBC in interviews aired Wednesday, Reuss said the companies are moving forward in completing a $2 billion deal.
      • A deal hasn’t been finalized, he added, but the automakers have until December 3 to reach an agreement.
      • Nikola tumbled on Friday after its CEO said it had a strategy ready should the agreement fall through.
      • Watch Nikola trade live here.

      Nikola shares rallied as much as 13% on Wednesday after General Motors President Mark Reuss said he still plans for the automakers to ink a partnership.

      In interviews aired on Bloomberg TV and CNBC, Reuss said that, while the $2 billion deal hasn’t been finalized, the companies are moving forward in talks. Nikola and GM first announced the agreement in September, but allegations made by a short-selling research firm prompted concerns of a canceled deal.

      GM delayed the expected closing of the deal last month, but the automaker’s president confirmed Wednesday that bringing the partnership to fruition would benefit both companies.

      “We know there’s great operational cost advantages there, there’s great efficiencies and there’s great opportunities,” Reuss said on CNBC. 

      Read more: MORGAN STANLEY: Buy these 61 stocks that will offer major earnings-driven upside following an imminent 10% market sell-off

      Shares pared some gains through the day but still sat roughly 8% higher at 2:30 p.m. ET.

      The two automakers now aim to reach an agreement before December 3. Under proposed specifics, GM would manufacture Nikola’s Badger pickup truck, while Nikola would use GM’s battery and fuel cell technology.

      The Wednesday leap follows a 15% tumble on Friday after Nikola’s CEO said it had plans to work on its own should the GM partnership fall through.

      While the stock has mostly recovered from last week’s decline, it’s still well below its June peak of nearly $80 per share. Hindenburg Research’s bearish report drove a sharp sell-off in September, and the resignation of founder Trevor Milton also slammed investor sentiment. Milton has since been accused of sexual assault by two women, extending controversy around the company and its rise through 2020. 

      Nikola traded at $22.45 per share as of 2:30 p.m. ET Wednesday.

      Now read more markets coverage from Markets Insider and Business Insider:

      Bitcoin leaps to highest since July 2019 after PayPal opens service to cryptocurrencies

      Investors shouldn’t hold their breath for pre-election stimulus, Goldman Sachs says

      Market wizard Jim Rogers started trading with $600 and now has a reported net worth of $300 million. He shares the 8 trading rules that ensured his success.

      Markets Insider

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      World News

      Jeff Bezos is the first person ever to be worth $200 billion. This is how the Amazon CEO's immense wealth stacks up to the average US worker, the British monarchy, and entire countries' GDP.

      • Jeff Bezos is the world's richest person, with a net worth of $190 billion, according to Bloomberg's Billionaires Index.
      • In August 2020, the Amazon CEO briefly became the first person in history to be worth $200 billion.
      • Since the beginning of March, when the US saw its first coronavirus deaths, Bezos' wealth has swelled by $74 billion.
      • With his $190 billion, Bezos is so rich that an average American spending $1 is comparable to the Amazon CEO spending $2 million.
      • He's more than twice as rich as the entire British monarchy.
      • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

      Jeff Bezos, the world's richest person, is worth $190 billion, according to Bloomberg's Billionaires Index.

      In August, the Amazon CEO became the first person in history to be worth $200 billion as Amazon sales surged during the coronavirus pandemic, but his net worth has since dipped back down from that peak.

      Though Bezos' annual salary is only $81,840, most of his wealth comes from his Amazon shares. His fortune has become so vast that it can be compared to the British monarchy and the GDP of entire countries. 

      Read on for a look at how Bezos' wealth stacks up against a typical American worker, the Queen of England, and the oil-rich country of Qatar. 

      Bezos makes more money per second than the typical US worker makes in a week

      Since mid-October 2019, Bezos' fortune has grown by $80 billion. Based on the year-over-year change in his net worth, Bezos has made $152,207 per minute — and $2,537 per second. That latter figure is more than three times what the median US worker makes in a week.

      That means that in just one minute, the Amazon chief makes well over three times what the median US worker makes in a year: about $41,000, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics data.

      When looking at Bezos' spending power compared to a typical American household, the comparison is stark.

      Based on the median net worth of an average US household, $97,300, an average American spending $1 is roughly equivalent to Bezos spending $1.95 million.

      The average American man with a bachelor's degree will earn about $2.2 million in his lifetime, according to the Social Security Administration, and the average American woman with a bachelor's degree will earn $1.3 million in her lifetime. Bezos makes about $2.2 million in 15 minutes.

      Bezos, who has a bachelor's degree from Princeton University, makes $152,207 every minute, according to Business Insider's calculations.

      Bezos remained the world's richest person even after a 2019 divorce in which he gave up 25% of the Amazon stock the couple owned

      After the couple's divorce, Bezos' ex-wife, MacKenzie Scott, is the third-richest woman in the world, after L'Oreal heiress Francoise Bettencourt Meyers, and Walmart heiress Alice Walton.

      She kept a 4% stake in Amazon, which now makes her the third-richest woman in the world.

      Scott, who was one of Amazon's first employees, is worth an estimated $61.9 billion.

      The Amazon CEO's net worth took a hit of more than $10 billion in 2019 — and he still didn't lose his spot as the world's richest person.

      And an incredibly lucrative 2020 has kept Bezos firmly on top. Most of the world's richest people have lost money during the pandemic, but according to Bloomberg, Bezos' fortune has grown by $74 billion since the beginning of March.

      The Amazon CEO is more than twice as rich as the British monarchy

      The British royal family was worth an estimated $88 billion in 2017, according to Forbes.

      In fact, Bezos' fortune is comparable to the GDPs of entire countries. His net worth is greater than the GDP of Qatar, a country rich in oil and natural gas resources. The Amazon CEO's wealth also exceeds the GDP of Iceland, Luxembourg, and Sri Lanka — combined, according to World Bank data.

      The five richest colleges in the US in 2018 based on the size of their endowments were Harvard University, with $38.3 billion, the University of Texas system, with $30.9 billion, and Yale University, with $29.4 billion, Stanford University with $26.5 billion, and Princeton University with $25.9 billion.

      Bezos' fortune is greater than those five universities' endowments combined — with $39 billion to spare.

      Since surpassing Bill Gates as the world's richest person in October 2017, Bezos has more than doubled his wealth

      When he overtook the Microsoft cofounder, Bezos' net worth was a mere $92.8 billion. Today, Gates remains the world's second-richest person with a net worth of $125 billion.

      At the end of 2018, Bezos was worth $160 billion.

      If the US had introduced a moderate wealth tax in 1982 — when the first Forbes 400 data on American billionaires was published — his net worth at the time would have been about half that, or $86.8 billion, according to a September 2019 study published in Brookings Papers on Economic Activity.

      But even with a mere $86.8 billion fortune, Bezos would still be one of the richest people in the world, outranked only by French businessman Bernard Arnault and Indian billionaire Mukesh Ambani.

      A wealth tax has been a hot topic during the 2020 presidential race, with Democratic nominee Joe Biden — as well as former candidates Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren — calling for increased taxes on the super-rich.

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