Tuesday morning news: January 22, 2019

British prime minister pushes Brexit Plan B » British Prime Minister Theresa May says she will not delay Britain’s exit from the European Union.

MAY: We will honor the mandate of the British people and leave the European Union in a way which benefits every part of our United Kingdom and every citizen of our country. 

May said she’ll keep working to win over British lawmakers, who soundly rejected her Brexit agreement with the EU last week.

Among the remaining roadblocks: plans to temporarily keep Britain in a customs union with the EU to avoid checks at the border between Ireland and Northern Ireland.

But Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn said he’s not hearing anything new from Prime Minister May.

CORBYN: The government still appears not to have come to terms with the scale of the defeat in the House of Commons last week. The prime minister seems to be going through the motions of accepting the results, but in reality is in deep denial. 

Corbyn has previously called for a second referendum on Brexit.

Parliament is scheduled to vote on her revised proposal and potential alternatives one week from today. The UK is scheduled to leave the EU on March 29th.

Sen. Kamala Harris announces presidential campaign » Another Democratic lawmaker is setting her sights on the White House.

HARRIS: I am running for president of the United States, and I’m very excited about it. I’m very excited about it.

California Senator Kamala Harris on ABC’s Good Morning America. Harris, who is the second black woman to serve in the Senate, announced her White House bid on MLK Day. She is the daughter of parents from Jamaica and India.

In a campaign video released Monday, the 54-year old portrayed herself as a fighter for justice, decency, and equality. She plans to propose a nearly $3-trillion tax plan and a Medicare-for-all government healthcare system.

Harris was elected to the Senate in 2016. Before that, she served six years as California’s attorney general.

Court rules for Texas in Planned Parenthood defunding case » A federal appeals court last week lifted a lower court ban that prohibited Texas from cutting Planned Parenthood from its Medicaid program. WORLD Radio’s Leigh Jones reports.

LEIGH JONES, NEWS EDITOR: In February of 2017, District Judge Sam Sparks blocked Texas from stripping $3 million in Medicaid funds from Planned Parenthood. The move to pull funding from the abortion giant came after undercover videos appeared to show Planned Parenthood executives discussing the sale of body parts from aborted babies.  

But Sparks ruled the officials had provided no evidence of wrongdoing.

Last week, the 5th U-S Circuit Court of Appeals removed Sparks’ preliminary injunction. The court said he should have given greater weight to state findings on whether Planned Parenthood staff were medically and ethically qualified.

The case now goes back to Sparks to determine whether the state has cause to pull the group’s funding.

Reporting for WORLD Radio, I’m Leigh Jones.

Winter storm wreaks havoc across Midwest and Northeast » Heavy snow and ice across the Midwest and Northeast grounded thousand of flights, as delays and cancellations continued into Monday.

This Massachusetts resident said her family returned from a cruise to find their return flight to Boston from south Florida cancelled.

AUDIO: We’ve been told we can’t get back until Wednesday.

She said she may rent a car and drive home, but many roads are also blanketed with ice. This motorist visiting New England from Tennessee said he narrowly avoided an accident.

AUDIO: We about just had a wreck not too long—we was back and forth sideways about four or five times.

Officials blame the storm for multiple deaths, including a Kansas snow plow driver involved in a weather related crash and a Connecticut subcontractor who died when a tree fell on him.

And the snow and ice won’t be melting anytime soon. Falling temperatures replaced the weekend’s precipitation as bitter cold and gusty winds swept across the eastern U.S.

Congolese court upholds election results » The Constitutional Court in the Democratic Republic of Congo on Sunday rejected allegations of fraud in last month’s presidential election and confirmed Felix Tshisekedi as the winner. WORLD Radio’s Kristen Flavin has more.

KRISTEN FLAVIN, REPORTER: The electoral commission announced earlier this month that Tshisekedi won with nearly 40 percent of the vote compared to 34 percent for challenger Martin Fayulu.

But Fayulu and his supporters claimed the election was rigged. He cited election data leaked by the Congo Research Group showing he won by a wide margin. But the court said Fayulu had no proof to back his accusations.

The African Union postponed a mission to the country on Monday after  the Congolese government refused to heed an unprecedented request to delay announcing the election results. The union said it had “serious doubts” about the vote.

Reporting for WORLD Radio, I’m Kristen Flavin.

(AP Photo/Frank Augstein) British Union flags fly in front of The Houses of Parliament in London, Tuesday, Jan. 22, 2019. 

WORLD Radio transcripts are created on a rush deadline. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of WORLD Radio programming is the audio record.

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