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Trumps at addiction summit, 1998 Jasper murder, smog report: 5 things you need to know Wednesday  4 Months ago

Source:   USA Today  

Both President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump will address attendees at the Rx Drug Abuse & Heroin Summit in Atlanta on Wednesday. The summit, which began in 2012, bills itself as "the event for decision makers and allied professionals working to address this public health emergency." Former Presidents Barack Obama and Bill Clinton have appeared in the past. Trump will head south amid his continued and numerous battles with Congress over how much information must be shared and who holds reins in the divided government. Trump on Tuesday told The Washington Post he didn’t see the point of cooperating with congressional oversight investigations, did not want current and former aides to testify before Congress and was seriously considering asserting executive privilege to hinder such appearances. 

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Avowed racist John William King, 44, is scheduled to be put to death Wednesday for his part in the 1998 murder of James Byrd Jr. In the morning of June 7, 1998, three white men beat Byrd after offering him a ride. They then chained the 49-year-old man to the back of a truck and dragged his body for nearly three miles near Jasper, Texas. The gruesome murder shook Jasper, a city of 7,600 people about 140 miles northeast of Houston, and sparked worldwide outrage. It's still considered one of the grisliest racial killings in American history. King, who is believed to be the incident's ringleader, will be the second man executed in the case. Lawrence Russell Brewer was executed in 2011 and the third participant, Shawn Allen Berry, was sentenced to life in prison. 

Wednesday's episode of the CW drama "Riverdale" (8 ET/PT) is the last one shot before the death of Luke Perry, the show's creator Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa revealed this week. Perry, who became a huge star in the 1990s on "Beverly Hills, 90210," played Archie Andrews' dad Fred Andrews on the show. He suffered a massive stroke and died March 4 at age 52. In a tweet Sunday that included a photo of Perry, Aguirre-Sacasa wrote: "As always, Fred's imparting words of wisdom to Archie. A beautiful, true moment between a father and his son. Wish these scenes could go on forever..."

California's reign as the state with the worst air pollution continues, with Los Angeles again the nation's smoggiest metro area, according to a report released Wednesday. And L.A. isn't alone when it comes to smog-choked cities in California: seven of the nation's top 10 smoggiest cities are in the Golden state, including other sprawling cities such as San Francisco, San Diego and Sacramento. The bad news came from the American Lung Association's annual "State of the Air" report, which covers 2015-2017. 

Eight Democratic presidential candidates will appear at the She The People presidential forum in Houston on Wednesday. She the People bills itself on its website as "a national network connecting women of color to transform our democracy" and the forum "will focus the nation on the issues important to women of color -- issues of racial, economic, gender, and social justice." Senators Cory Booker (New Jersey), Kamala Harris (California), Amy Klobuchar (Minnesota), Bernie Sanders (Vermont) and Elizabeth Warren (Massachusetts), former HUD Secretary Julián Castro, Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard and former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke are slated to appear at the event. In recent days, Warren and Harris have made headlines by explicitly backing the impeachment of President Donald Trump and Harris also said Tuesday that she would take executive action on gun control if she is elected president in 2020.  

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