Wednesday morning news, January 22, 2020


Democrats, Republicans clash over rules on day one of Senate impeachment trial » Plenty of fireworks in the Senate chamber on day one of the Senate’s impeachment trial. Democrats and Republicans clashed over the rules that will govern the trial. That debate spilled over into this morning. 

House impeachment manager Adam Schiff stepped back to the lectern just after 1 a.m.

AUDIO: Mr. Schiff you have 57 minutes. Don’t worry, I won’t use it. 

Schiff argued repeatedly that the Republican plan to get straight to opening arguments and vote later on calling new witnesses in the trial is a ruse. 

SCHIFF: A vote to delay is a vote to deny. Let’s make no mistake about that. 

Democrats pushed multiple amendments to try and force new witnesses at the start of the trial. But they were unable to peel away GOP votes and each time, the Republican majority voted to shoot it down. 

ROBERTS: The yeas are 53, and the nays are 47. The amendment is tabled. 

Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts heard there with the tally. 

Just before 2 a.m. Eastern Time, the Senate voted, once again down party lines, to adopt ground rules for trial. Those rules will delay a decision on witnesses until later in the process. 


Trump touts economy, trade at World Economic Forum » Meantime, President Trump watched day one of the Senate proceedings unfold from across the Atlantic. 

The president spoke in Switzerland at the World Economic Forum. The two-day meeting brings together roughly 3,000 global CEOs and politicians at a ski resort in Davos. 

Trump touted a booming U.S. economy—as well as improvements to trade policy. 

TRUMP: Perhaps the most transformative change of all is on trade reform where we’re addressing chronic problems that have been ignored, tolerated, or enabled for decades. 

But he also celebrated progress toward winding down the trade war with China and a new trade truce with France.

Many participants at the gathering discussed strategies to meet the goals of the 2015 Paris climate accord. But the president seemingly took a jab at climate alarmism. 

TRUMP: This is a time of tremendous for tremendous hope, and joy, and optimism, and action. But to embrace the possibilities of tomorrow, we must reject the perennial prophets of doom.

But the president did announce that the United States will join an initiative to plant 1 trillion trees worldwide.


First U.S. case of new coronavirus confirmed » Health officials have confirmed the first case of the new coronavirus in the United States. 

A U.S. resident was diagnosed after returning to the Seattle area last week after traveling to central China, where the outbreak began. 

Dr. Chris Bitters is with Washington’s Snohomish County Health District. He said the man was transported to a hospital just outside of Seattle. 

BITTERS: That facility is following our jointly developed infectious disease protocols to ensure prevention of transmission in the facility. 

Nancy Messonnier with the Centers for Disease Control noted that health officials began screening passengers at several airports on Friday.

MESSONNIER: At San Francisco airport, New York JFK, and Los Angeles airport. So far, CDC staff have screened over 1,200 passengers.

She said they haven’t discovered any signs of the illness yet among those passengers. The CDC will expand the screenings to Atlanta’s Hartsfield International Airport later this week.

Six people have died from the new coronavirus. The cold-like sickness has sparked fears of an epidemic similar to the SARS outbreak that killed nearly 800 people in 2002 and 2003.


Boeing expects longer delay for FAA approval of grounded jets » Boeing said Tuesday that it doesn’t expect its grounded Max jets to fly again anytime soon. WORLD Radio’s Anna Johansen reports. 

ANNA JOHANSEN, REPORTER: The company said federal regulators are not likely approve its changes to the Max jet flight systems until the summer. That timetable is several months longer than the company was saying just a few weeks ago.

That sent Boeing shares tumbling on Wall Street—down nearly 6 percent at one point, to a 52-week low. They ended the day down 3.4 percent.

The latest timetable is based on work remaining to be done before the Federal Aviation Administration will allow the Max back in the sky. 

The FAA said in a statement that it is conducting “a thorough, deliberate process” to make sure the changes to the Max meet certification standards. The agency says it has no timetable for completing its review.

Reporting for WORLD Radio, I’m Anna Johansen. 


Two more Puerto Rico officials fired after warehouse break-in » Puerto Rican Governor Wanda Vázquez this week fired two more officials amid growing outrage over the discovery of a warehouse filled with emergency supplies sent after Hurricane Maria.

Vázquez fired the heads of the island’s housing and family departments as well as the director of Puerto Rico’s emergency management agency.

A Facebook video surfaced over the weekend showing a group of angry people breaking into the massive warehouse where they discovered tons of undistributed relief supplies. 

The governor said she decided on the firings after she met with leaders of her administration and officials were unable to provide information she requested about other collection and distribution centers.


(AP Photo/Evan Vucci) U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during a news conference at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020. 

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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