5 things for August 31: White House, bus wreck, NBC, Catholic Church, car seats


(CNN)Can’t step away from the chocolate chip cookies? It might not be (all) your fault. Here’s what else you need to know to Get Up to Speed and Out the Door. (You can also get “5 Things You Need to Know Today” delivered to your inbox daily. Sign up here.)

Jeff Sessions is safe — until November. At least that’s what President Trump told Bloomberg News, saying no action would be taken on the beleaguered attorney general until after the midterm elections. Trump is still ticked off that Sessions recused himself from the Russia investigation. He’s been talking about getting rid of his AG for months and may be emboldened by GOP senators who seem to be more open to the idea — as long as it happens after the upcoming elections. Meanwhile, at a rally last night in Indiana, the President went after the Justice Department and FBI leaders (again), saying he would “get involved” in DOJ affairs if “it doesn’t straighten out properly.” He also implied, to chants of “lock her up,” that Hillary Clinton could face criminal charges.

      Trump attacks Justice Department and FBI

    2. New Mexico bus-truck crash

    At least seven people were killed yesterday when a tractor-trailer blew a tire, crossed into oncoming traffic and smashed head-on into a Greyhound bus. The horrific wreck occurred on Interstate 40 in northwestern New Mexico. After the crash, some of the 49 bus passengers tried to climb out windows as bystanders walked through debris carrying ladders. The truck driver had non-life-threatening injuries. The death toll is expected to rise, a police spokesman said.

      Multiple casualties in New Mexico bus crash

    3. NBC News

    Did NBC try to kill one of the stories that led to Harvey Weinstein’s downfall? An ex-NBC News producer makes that explosive claim in a New York Times interview. Rich McHugh, who worked for months on journalist Ronan Farrow’s expose on the disgraced Hollywood mogul, said a call from “the highest levels of NBC” came that stopped work on the story. NBC News denies this, saying Farrow’s story simply wasn’t ready at the time. Farrow eventually took his work to The New Yorker, which last October published a more detailed version than NBC News says the journalist had wanted to air on its network.

      Ronan Farrow’s new piece on CBS and harassment

    4. Australia and the Catholic Church

    The Catholic Church in Australia, like in other countries, has been rocked by child sex abuse scandals. A government inquiry into abuse in Australia’s religious institutions led to a list of almost 200 recommendations, including about 20 targeting the Catholic Church. Its leaders said they’ll follow “98%” of the recommendations — but won’t compel priests to report child abuse revealed in confessions. That decision is a big stumbling block for the church as it tries to regain the public’s trust. Catholic leaders also balked at the suggestion they end mandatory celibacy for priests.

      Church: Priests won’t report abuse confessions

    5. Child car seats

    New rule: Kids should stay in rear-facing car seats until they hit the height or weight limit for the seat. This new guidance, part of updated recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics, changes what we’ve all been previously told about young children and car seats: that kids should ride in rear-facing seats until at least age 2. That’s being tweaked because car seat manufacturers are making seats that let kids stay rear-facing until they reach 40 pounds. Using the right car seat reduces the risk of death or injury by more than 70%. All kids younger than 13 years should be in a vehicle’s back seat.

      New liquid nitrogen cereal sparks controversy

    Gone but not forgotten
    The lobsters died are a crash on a Maine roadway. PETA wanted to memorialize them — with a 5-foot-tall tombstone.
    Road blocks
    This Bugatti Chiron is made out of 1 million Legos — and you can drive it!
    Executive drive
    President Obama may not be in the White House anymore, but you’ll soon be able to ride down Obama Boulevard in LA.


    A day of remembrance 
    Singers and politicians will be among the mourners when Aretha Franklin’s funeral starts this morning at 10 ET in Detroit. Of course, you can watch it on CNN. We’ll also have coverage of memorials in Washington for John McCain. His body will lie in state at the US Capitol, with a ceremony this morning in the Rotunda at 11 ET.

      Biden calls McCain a brother: We had ‘a lot of family fights’


    The number of children separated from their parents at the US-Mexico border that are still in government custody, according to a new court filing

      Some kids separated at border may never see parents again

    The estimated number of people worldwide who died by a gun in 2016, according to medical researchers in a study published this week

      By the numbers: Gun deaths in America


    Quiz time
    To protect native wildlife, a village in New Zealand wants to ban what kind of animal?
    A. dogs
    B. birds
    C. cats
    D. raccoons
    Play “Total Recall: The CNN news quiz” to see if you’re right. And don’t forget, you can also find a version of the quiz on your Amazon devices! Just say, “Alexa, ask CNN for a quiz.”


    Yeah, you’ll be busy with barbecues and football this holiday weekend, but you might still have a chance to watch that guy from “The Office” take on the “Jack Ryan” character in a new Amazon series. Or head to the theater for the historical drama, “Operation Finale.”


    Horse meets horse
    This horse gets its mind blown when it meets a statue of a baby horse. (Click to view.)

    Read more: www.cnn.com


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