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The latest news from Life

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    Donald Trump

    • When President Donald Trump arrived in North Carolina on Wednesday to survey the damage from Hurricane Florence, he seemed to be particularly interested in the conditions near one of his golf courses. 
    • During a briefing on damage from the storm, Trump asked a local official how conditions were at Lake Norman, the location of a Trump National Golf Club. 
    • Trump at one point also told a storm victim to "have a good time" as he handed him a packaged meal.
    • Florence has led to at least 37 deaths, 27 of which occurred in North Carolina.

    When President Donald Trump arrived in North Carolina on Wednesday to survey the damage from Hurricane Florence, he seemed to be particularly interested in the conditions near one of his golf courses. 

    During a briefing at Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, Trump asked Lynn Good, chairman and CEO of Duke Energy, how things were near Lake Norman.

    Good told Trump things were "good," adding, "but still 10 or 12 inches of rain."

    "I love that area.  I can't tell you why, but I love that area," Trump said in response.

    There is a Trump National Golf Club on the shores of Lake Norman, which might explain the president's affinity for the area.

    Since entering the White House, Trump has spent at least 199 days at his properties, including 154 days at golf properties, according to an analysis from NBC News

    The president was often critical of his predecessor, former President Barack Obama, for playing golf.

    During Wednesday's briefing, Trump thanked federal and local officials for their efforts to prepare for and address Hurricane Florence, and expressed his sympathies to those who lost loved ones. 

    "To the families who have lost loved ones, America grieves with you, and our hearts break for you," Trump said. "And to all those impacted by this terrible storm, our entire American family is with you and ready to help. And you will recover."

    During his visit to North Carolina on Wednesday, Trump at one point also told a storm victim to "have a good time" as he handed him a packaged meal. The president made similar comments last year while addressing victims of Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico, a storm over which Trump continues to face criticism in terms of his response

    At another point on Wednesday, a child asked the president for a hug, and he obliged. 

    Florence has led to at least 37 deaths, 27 of which occurred in North Carolina. Thousands of people remain in shelters and hundreds of thousands remain without power. 

    Flooding from the monster storm wreaked havoc across the Carolinas and the damage is extensive. North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper on Wednesday said, "We are a state that is hurting."

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Inside the Trump 'MAGA' hat factory


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    ryan coogler lebron

    • Lebron James is making a sequel to "Space Jam" with Ryan Coogler, the director of Marvel's "Black Panther," according to The Hollywood Reporter. 
    • James will star in the film, while Coogler will produce it.
    • Bugs Bunny will also star.


    "Black Panther" director Ryan Coogler is set to produce a sequel to "Space Jam" starring Lebron James, first reported by The Hollywood Reporter Wednesday and seemingly confirmed by James' production company shortly after.

    James will act in the sequel to the 1996 film that starred Michael Jordan alongside Bugs Bunny in a live-action animated comedy. Bugs Bunny is set to return for the second installment.

    Terence Nance, the creator of the HBO sketch comedy series "Random Acts of Flyness," will direct the film.  

    According to THR, production on the Warner Bros. film is slated to start in the 2019 NBA offseason.

    James told THR that he "loved [Coogler's] vision" for "Black Panther," the blockbuster Marvel film released this spring. "For Ryan to be able to bring that to kids, it’s amazing," James told the outlet of the black heroes who appeared in "Black Panther."

    James' production company, SpringHill Entertainment, seemed to confirm its coproduction of the "Space Jam" sequel in a tweet on Wednesday, which featured the following image of lockers named for Bugs Bunny, James, Nance, and Coogler: 

    slack imgs 1

    James' last starring role came in Amy Schumer's 2015 romantic comedy, "Trainwreck." James' role in "Space Jam 2" coincides with his move to Los Angeles this summer, where he will not only play for the Los Angeles Lakers but, as many analystsnoted, look to increase his presence in Hollywood. 

    "Space Jam 2" has been a long-rumored production, but James confirmed to THR in 2016 that he would star in the sequel. At the time, THR reported that "Fast and Furious 6" director Justin Lin was slated to direct the film. 

    SEE ALSO: 'Space Jam 2' starring LeBron James is officially happening

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: A top movie actor reveals how he learns different accents


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    minimalist desk

    • Your desk should be organized in a way that maximizes productivity and your ability to perform tasks efficiently at work.
    • A cluttered, messy desk can negatively impact your ability to perform your job.
    • Here are nine things you should never keep at your desk.

     

    Organization comes naturally to some, but for others, it's just not in their nature. Maybe you're too busy to clean up, or perhaps organized chaos works well for you.

    Regardless, a messy desk can negatively impact productivity and your ability to perform tasks efficiently at work, according to a study published in The Harvard Business Review.

    Additionally, some of the items you keep on your desk may not be appropriate for the workplace, such as political items or documents with sensitive information.

    Whether your place of work is cubicle, corner office, or open layout, here are nine things you should never keep at your desk:

    SEE ALSO: 6 things you should always keep at your desk

    1. Lunch

    You may think it's wise  to eat lunch at your desk, when in fact, it could actually hurt your productivity.

    In a 2015 NPR article, Professor Kimberly Elsbach of the University of California, Davis Graduate School of Management noted, "We know that creativity and innovation happen when people change their environment, and especially when they expose themselves to a nature-like environment, to a natural environment."

    "So staying inside, in the same location, is really detrimental to creative thinking. It's also detrimental to doing that rumination that's needed for ideas to percolate and gestate and allow a person to arrive at an 'aha' moment," Elsbach said.



    2. Dirty coffee mugs

    Unwashed coffee mugs lying around can add clutter your workspace.

    "It's best to take a minute and leave your coffee mug in the kitchen immediately after usage," Valli Vishnubhotla, digital PR manager at AW Media, told Business Insider.



    3. Political items

    "Although everyone is entitled to their beliefs and opinions, your work colleagues may take umbrage to your political viewpoint," business coach and entrepreneur Eugene Gamble told Business Insider.

    This can lead to unnecessary work tension and conflict. Gamble suggested keeping your political views separate from the workplace.



    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Brett Kavanaugh supreme court whip 2x1

    • President Donald Trump nominated Brett Kavanaugh to serve on the Supreme Court.
    • The Senate, tasked with the confirmation process, is split at 51 Republicans and 49 Democrats.
    • Republicans will need a minimum of 50 votes, because Vice President Mike Pence can cast a tie-breaker.
    • But each party is looking to lock down all of their members as quickly as possible.


    When President Donald Trump nominated Brett Kavanaugh, a federal appeals judge, to fill the vacancy on the Supreme Court left by retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy, it immediately created a horse race for Republicans to lock down at least 50 votes in his favor. Meanwhile, Senate Democrats are looking to block the nominee.

    Because of the split nature of the Senate, in which Republicans control 51 seats and Democrats have 49 (including two independents who caucus with Democrats), the confirmation process will come down to the wire. Republicans need a minimum of 50 votes, creating a scenario in which Vice President Mike Pence could cast the deciding vote as the tie-breaker.

    Most senators are reliable to toe the party line as to how they vote for Kavanaugh. But the vote count will likely be closer than ever, because of a mix of two moderate Republican in Sens. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Susan Collins of Maine, along with a handful of Democrats facing tough reelection bids this November in traditionally red states.

    The Senate Judiciary Committee's series confirmation hearing for Kavanaugh began on Tuesday, September 4, when political infighting enveloped much of the panel. But the committee's chairman, Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley, vowed to continue moving forward with the process.

    Kavanaugh's confirmation appeared to be on the ropes when a woman came forward accusing him of sexually assaulting her when they were both teenagers in the early 1980s.

    The Judiciary Committee has scheduled an additional hearing with Kavanaugh slated for Monday, September 24. Christine Blasey Ford, the woman accusing Kavanaugh, has declined to testify until the FBI has investigated the matter.

    This graphic serves as an ongoing whip count of who is leaning which way and whose final vote is still up in the air. It will be updated accordingly.

    SEE ALSO: Brett Kavanaugh's Supreme Court nomination has suddenly gotten back on track as Republicans grow impatient with his accuser

    DON'T MISS: The woman accusing Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault reportedly had to move out of her house and hire private security after receiving death threats

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Inside the Trump 'MAGA' hat factory


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    Simple Mobile cellphone data tips

    People are hungry for more data availability on their mobile devices — for photos, videos, music, games, texts, and other digital content. But at the same time we all want to keep our monthly and yearly service costs down.

    Fortunately, there are several ways to operate mobile devices more efficiently. Here's how you can enjoy content on your device while not having to worry about using too much data — and spending too much money.

    Deploy apps that track your data usage.

    There are plenty of apps designed to track cellular-data usage. These offerings include features such as screens that show the percentage of cellular data used in a given month, notifications of how many days are left until the current allotment ends, and cellular usage versus WiFi usage. Users can set alerts to let them know when they've reached certain data-allotment milestones. Other features keep track of how much data is used daily and set monthly forecasts for expected use. And some even include the ability to track usage in real time so that you can quickly see when lots of data is consumed at any one point.

    Sign up for a low-cost data provider.

    Some providers, such as SIMPLE Mobile, offer data costs that are low, providing a way to operate your mobile device more cost-effectively. SIMPLE Mobile has a variety of 30-day no-contract wireless service plans that provide flexibility in terms of price and capabilities. The company provides nationwide coverage on a lightning-fast 4G LTE network, and offers 30-day service plans starting at $25 a month (plus taxes and fees).

    Use data-compression apps.

    One way to reduce data usage effectively on your smartphone is by using a data-compression app. It is especially helpful if you send and receive large data files, such as music and videos, which tend to eat up a lot of data if they're transferred without compression. Compressing such files before sending and receiving them can save quite a bit on data usage, and it's simple to do. The technology can also be used for web browsing and email. Best of all, some compression products can reduce the downloaded size of webpages by a huge percentage without affecting the online experience.

    Delete apps you don't use much.

    It doesn't make much sense to hold on to data-consuming apps you seldom or never use. Many of the apps you have installed on your phone might not be of any use anyway, depending on how you use it. Do an inventory of apps to find out which ones you can delete. This could enhance operation of the device and reduce data usage.

    Limit the data usage of each application.

    Limiting the amount of data usage by apps on your device is another good practice, and especially useful if you run a large number of apps. Many apps continue to run even after you close them, in some cases via background processes. Setting data-usage limits for all or most apps can ensure that the apps will not exceed a designated threshold for data usage. And it's easy to do: On an iPhone or iPad, simply go to the settings menu and select "enable restrictions." On Android phones, go to the settings menu and select "data usage" and then tap the "set mobile data limit" box.

    Find out more about SIMPLE Mobile plans.

    Disclaimer: Please always refer to the latest Terms and Conditions of Service at SimpleMobile.com.

    This post is sponsored by SIMPLE Mobile.

    Advertisement

     

     

    Join the conversation about this story »


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    Verizon HQ 9307

    • Verizon has a large, seven-building campus in Basking Ridge, New Jersey.
    • The space can accommodate a total of 6,000 employees.
    • Business Insider swung by One Verizon Way and took a tour of its facilities.


    Verizon's corporate headquarters may be based in New York City, but the telecom giant has another big presence about 30 miles to the west.

    Verizon's recently-renovated operational headquarters are located in Basking Ridge, New Jersey. The office complex, known as One Verizon Way, can accommodate 6,000 employees.

    Verizon moved into the space in 2005. The most recent round of renovations began in 2016 and wrapped up in 2017.

    Business Insider visited the space and took a tour with Verizon's Executive Director of Global Real Estate Joe Rossi.

    Here's a look inside Verizon's Basking Ridge campus:

    SEE ALSO: At PayPal and Venmo's New York offices, employees enjoy as much free food as they can stomach, from Taco Tuesdays to secret stashes of candy

    DON'T MISS: Facebook was just named the best workplace of 2018 — step inside its New York office, where employees enjoy an in-house pastry chef and tons of celebrity cameos

    SEE ALSO: This $3.2 billion tech company you've never heard of has insane perks including massage therapists, a pool, and woodside yoga

    Verizon's operational headquarters takes up 138 acres and consists of seven interconnected buildings. The Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge surrounds the campus, which means that employees often spot turtle and bird eggs around the site.



    Verizon set up shop in its Basking Ridge compound in 2005. Previously, AT&T and Pfizer occupied the space.

    Source: New York Times, New York Post



    The office complex is known as One Verizon Way, but that's not all there is to the space.



    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    absentee ballot.JPG

    • Fairfax County, Virginia conducted a focus group this summer with college interns from across various county departments.
    • County officials learned that college students were failing to send back their absentee ballots because they didn't know how to get a stamp.
    • "That seems to be like a hump that they can’t get across," Lisa Conners, of the Fairfax County Office of Public Affairs, told WTOP on Tuesday.

    Democrats are counting on Generation Z, many of whom recently gained the right to vote, to help turn Congress blue in the midterm elections.

    But 49 cents may be all it takes to keep these post-Millennials from exercising their civic duty.

    On Tuesday, a Fairfax County, Virginia official said they are noticing a disturbing trend: young people failing to mail in their absentee ballots because they don't know how to get a stamp.

    Lisa Connors, of the Fairfax County Office of Public Affairs, ran a focus group this summer comprised of colleges students interning in various county departments.

    "One thing that came up, which I had heard from my own kids but I thought they were just nerdy, was that the students will go through the process of applying for a mail-in absentee ballot, they will fill out the ballot, and then, they don’t know where to get stamps," Connors told WTOP. "That seems to be like a hump that they can’t get across."

    Connors went on to say that many in the focus group said "they knew lots of people who did not send in their ballots because it was too much of a hassle or they didn't know where to get a stamp."

    "Across the board, they were all nodding and had a very spirited conversation about 'Oh yeah, I know so many people who didn’t send theirs in because they didn't have a stamp,'" Connors said.

    As a way to combat this abstention for the upcoming midterm elections, the county is focusing on raising awareness of in-person absentee voting, which students can do while they're home on fall breaks. That voting starts in Virginia on Friday.

    Another potential hurdle that the county is worried about is voters mixing up their home address, where they are registered to vote, with the address they want their absentee ballot shipped to, according to WTOP. If they mix this up on the ballot, then it's rendered invalid.

    You can buy stamps from the US Postal Service online and in person, as well as from other online retailers like Amazon and Stamps.com. Banks, gas stations, pharmacies, and big box retailers like Walmart also sell them.

    SEE ALSO: Both Democrats and Republicans think Obama's return to politics will help win them the midterms

    DON'T MISS: The midterm elections could paralyze a key instrument of Trump's agenda for the US economy

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Inside the Trump 'MAGA' hat factory


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    anita hill

    • Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh has been accused of sexual misconduct, and it's not the first time in American history this has happened.
    • There are parallels between Christine Blasey Ford's allegations against Kavanaugh, and lawyer Anita Hill's 1991 testimony against then-nominee Clarence Thomas.
    • Here's what happened in both cases, what Hill says the Senate can do better this time around, and how the allegations against Kavanaugh could impact American politics for years to come.

    When President Donald Trump nominated Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court in July, his confirmation seemed all but certain.

    A graduate of Yale College and Yale Law School, he boasted experience in the Justice Department and the White House in addition to 12 years on the DC Circuit Court of Appeals.

    Other than a squabble over the release of some documents from his time in the Bush administration, and multiple interruptions from protesters, Kavanaugh's confirmation hearings went off without a hitch.

    That is, until a bombshell sexual assault allegation from the early 1980s surfaced against him, bringing the confirmation proceedings to a screeching halt.

    While such an event may seem unprecedented, a strikingly similar scenario unfolded 27 years ago during the confirmation process of Justice Clarence Thomas. Law professor Anita Hill was called into testify publicly in 1991 about allegations of sexual harassment she lodged against Thomas in a private FBI sit-down.

    An all-male panel of senators grilling Anita Hill over her allegations and attacking her credibility was largely perceived as sexist, and brought the issue of sexual harassment into the national consciousness, as well as inspired a generation of women to run for office.

    Here's what happened last time, and how the lasting effects of Hill's case could color Kavanaugh's chances of getting confirmed to the Supreme Court.

    A tale of 2 Judges — and 2 professors

    Anita Hill 1991

    The details of both situations have some similarities: both accusers are university professors who initially made their accusations of misconduct confidentially or anonymously, but were driven by a sense of civic duty to risk everything to come forward against powerful men.

    Christine Blasey-Ford, a psychology professor at Palo Alto University and Stanford, accused a drunken 17-year old Kavanaugh of attempting to rape her when she was 15 at a 1982 house party in suburban Maryland in a letter to her congresswoman Anna Eshoo. Eshoo then passed it along to Sen. Dianne Feinstein, the ranking member of the Judiciary Committee, in July.

    After two months, Feinstein referred the letter to the FBI, the content of which was then reported on by The Intercept. Investigative journalists Ronan Farrow and Jane Mayer (who, coincidentally, co-wrote a book in the 1990s about the Anita Hill hearings), tracked down and wrote a story on Ford for the New Yorker while keeping her identity anonymous.

    On Sunday, Ford went public in an interview with the Washington Post's Emma Brown, putting a face and name to the allegations, and offering more details to back up her story.

    Kavanaugh vehemently denies having assaulted Ford or "anyone else," and said he is prepared to testify under oath to that effect.

    Hill's allegations against Thomas in 1991 were somewhat different in that they concerned a pattern of harassment and inappropriate behavior as opposed to one isolated alleged assault.

    During a private interview with the FBI, Hill accused Thomas of sexually harassing her and creating a hostile work environment over a number of years while she worked for him in the Department of Justice's Civil Rights division and at the Equal Opportunity Employment Commission in the early 1980s.

    After the interview's contents were leaked to the press, Sen. Joe Biden, then the Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, re-opened Thomas' confirmation hearings — and called for Hill to publicly testify, which she did in October 1991.

    "The most moving aspect of Hill's testimony was the vivid portrait she painted of the vulnerability, humiliation and frustration she experienced while working under such conditions," TIME Magazine writer Jill Smolowe wrote of Hill's nearly 8 hours of testimony before the committee.

    "She spoke of her fear of being squeezed out of good assignments, losing her job, maybe even not being able to find any job at all within the Reagan Administration if she continued to resist Thomas' alleged overtures."

    Casting doubt on the women

    WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 06: Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Charles Grassley (R-IA) presides over the third day of Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation hearing in the Hart Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill September 6, 2018 in Washington, DC. Kavanaugh was nominated by President Donald Trump to fill the vacancy on the court left by retiring Associate Justice Anthony Kennedy. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

    Even after the #MeToo movement has brought down dozens of high-profile men and sparked a national reckoning over sexual misconduct, there are striking similarities between how Ford is treated now and how Hill was treated 27 years ago.

    If Ford testifies, both women will have questioned by an all-male panel of GOP Senators. While there are now four women on the Judiciary Committee, they are all Democrats.

    In 1991, Republicans on the Committee pressed Hill on the most sexually explicit details of the alleged harassment, and sought to undermine her credibility at every turn.

    Why, they wondered, did she not report the alleged harassment at the time? Why did she take another job under Thomas at the EOEC after being harassed at the Justice Department? They pointed to Hill once giving Thomas a ride to the airport as evidence that she was lying about being harassed.

    Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah, who is still on the Judiciary Committee, even accused Hill of fabricating her testimony and adapting it from the book "The Exorcist."

    It wasn't only the Republicans who were criticized for how they handled the hearing. Biden came under fire for not calling multiple witnesses who had volunteered to testify in support of Hill's version of events as part of a deal with Republican leadership.

    "I wish I had been able to do more for Anita Hill," Biden told Teen Vogue in 2017. "I owe her an apology."

    Ford provided the Post with notes from a 2012 therapy session in which she discussed the alleged attack, and the results of a polygraph indicating she told the truth, (even though polygraph exams are not usually considered admissible evidence in a court of law), but that hasn't shielded her from numerous attacks on her credibility.

    Some Republican senators and commentators have zeroed in on Ford's lack of recollection of some of the key details on the alleged incident, like whose house the assault occurred at, doubting the year it happened, and her not speaking publicly about the incident for 35 years, to accuse her of lying about the entire incident.

    "Most women remember virtually everything about the circumstances of a sexual assault no matter how long ago," Dennis Prager claimed in the National Review, an argument thoroughly debunked by substantive research that trauma psychologists and other scientists have conducted on repressed memories and post-traumatic stress.

    Similarly to how Hatch and Thomas accused Hill's testimony of being "contrived ... by special interest groups," and "slick lawyers," conservative Erick Erickson claimed Ford was somehow put up to falsely accuse Kavanaugh of assault by abortion rights groups concerned about his stance on the issue — a claim Thomas also lodged against Hill in his 2007 memoir.

    Both women have also been accused of suffering from mental illness or delusions. Some Thomas supporters accused Hill of suffering from "erotomania," a condition that causes people to have wild romantic or sexual delusions.

    Ed Whelan, Kavanaugh's former coworker at the Department of Justice, wondered on Twitter if Ford's "long course of psychotherapy included recovered-memory therapy, dubious method known to create false memories." (He has since deleted the tweet.) Another conservative commentator called her a "loon."

    When asked by reporters to comment on Ford's allegations against Kavanaugh on Monday, Hatch said, "the woman is probably mixed up."

    What Anita Hill thinks the Senate should do this time around

    Brett Kavanaugh

    The Senate Judiciary Committee now has a second chance to evaluate allegations of sexual misconduct against a Supreme Court nominee, and Hill laid out a number of suggestions for them in a Tuesday New York Times op-ed.

    "That the Senate Judiciary Committee still lacks a protocol for vetting sexual harassment and assault claims that surface during a confirmation hearing suggests that the committee has learned little from the Thomas hearing, much less the more recent #MeToo movement," she wrote.

    Hill argued the committee should designate "a neutral investigative body with experience in sexual misconduct cases" to do an independent probe of the alleged incident to produce the more reliable results and avoid any semblance of partisanship.

    She also advised the committee not to rush the hearings on the matter, arguing their scheduled date of hearing testimony from Kavanaugh and Ford on Monday is far too soon to adequately prepare for a hearing on such a serious matter.

    Ford and her lawyer agree. In a letter sent to Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley and obtained by CNN on Tuesday night, Ford's lawyer requested that a thorough FBI investigation of the incident take place before her client will testify under oath.

    Hatch responded by claiming the FBI "does not do investigations like this", and said the judiciary committee would proceed as planned.

    Hill said on "Good Morning America" on Wednesday that the committee should "push the pause button" on the hearings until the FBI investigates.

    "Finally, refer to Christine Blasey Ford by her name," Hill wrote in her op-ed. "Dr. Blasey is not simply 'Judge Kavanaugh’s accuser.' Dr. Blasey is a human being with a life of her own. She deserves the respect of being addressed and treated as a whole person."

    A 2nd 'year of the woman'?

    year of the woman female senators 1992 Democratic National Convention

    Thomas was eventually confirmed to the Supreme Court by a narrow 52-48 vote.

    But the effects of Hill's testimony not only brought the issue of workplace sexual harassment into the mainstream, it also had a lasting impact on the make-up of Congress.

    The image of an all-male, all-white panel questioning Hill about the legitimacy of her experiences with harassment highlighted the lack of female representation in Congress, inspiring a new generation of women to take on the male-dominated institution.

    The year 1992 was termed the "Year of The Woman" due to the record-shattering number of women who ran for and won seats in Congress. Twenty-four women were elected to the House of Representatives for the first time, and the number of female US Senators tripled from two to six.

    This year, another record of 256 women have won primaries to advance to the congressional general elections in November. The sheer number of women running with the backdrop of the #MeToo movement could drive women — particularly college-educated suburban women who might not usually vote in midterm election — to the polls.

    "This year certainly has the potential to be another year of the woman," Laurel Harbridge-Yong, a political scientist at Northwestern University, told Business Insider.

    "To the extent the concerns around Kavanaugh are adequately handled or not, this could mobilize white suburban women, a really key segment of the electorate, to vote for Democratic congressional candidates."

    SEE ALSO: The woman accusing Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault reportedly had to move out of her house and hire private security after receiving death threats

    DON'T MISS: Here's an evolving count of which senators are voting for Trump's Supreme Court pick

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Inside the Trump 'MAGA' hat factory


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    Sahara

    • President Donald Trump recently suggested to the Spanish government it should build a wall in the Sahara desert to address the migration crisis, according to Spain's foreign minister Josep Borrell
    • When Spanish diplomats told Trump building a wall across the Sahara desert would be no easy feat the president said, "The Sahara border can’t be bigger than our border with Mexico."
    • Spain has seen over 30,000 migrants and refugees arrive by sea so far in 2018, making it the top destination for migrants arriving via the Mediterranean. 

    President Donald Trump's obsession with building walls has apparently gone global. 

    Trump recently suggested to the Spanish government it should build a wall in the Sahara desert to address the migration crisis, according to Spain's foreign minister Josep Borrell

    Spain has experienced a surge in migration, particularly over the past year as thousands of people attempt to make the dangerous journey across the Mediterranean in search of a better life in Europe. 

    The European country has seen over 30,000 migrants and refugees arrive by sea so far in 2018, making Spain the top destination for migrants arriving via the Mediterranean. Moroccans represent the largest single nationality arriving in Spain, but people are coming from other countries in Africa as well.

    Nearly 2,000 people have died attempting to make the journey across the sea to Europe in 2018 so far. 

    Trump famously called for a wall to be built along the US-Mexico border to stop illegal immigration to the US during his 2016 presidential campaign, and now apparently feels it can help Europe as well. 

    When Spanish diplomats told Trump building a wall across the Sahara desert would be no easy feat the president said, "The Sahara border can’t be bigger than our border with Mexico," according to Borrell. 

    The Sahara desert is roughly 3,000 miles long. Comparatively, the US-Mexico border spans roughly 2,000 miles. 

    Beyond the sheer size of the Sahara, the other challenge to building such a wall is the fact Spain would need permission to do so from the African countries the massive desert stretches across. 

    Borrell spoke of Trump's Sahara wall suggestion at a lunch in Madrid this week, but did not clarify when the president made these remarks. But The Guardian reports it could've been when the Spanish foreign minister accompanied King Felipe and Queen Letizia to the White House in June.

    When asked for more details on Borrell's comments, a spokesman for the foreign ministry told The Guardian, "We can confirm that’s what the minister said, but we won’t be making any further comment on the minister’s remarks."

    It seems Trump struggles to avoid discussing his desired border wall in almost any context, and on Tuesday said a recent visit to a 9/11 memorial in Pennsylvania gave him more inspiration for his vision

    "They built this gorgeous wall where the plane went down in Pennsylvania. Shanksville. And I was there. I made the speech. And it’s sort of beautiful, what they did is incredible," Trump told Hill.TV in an interview on Tuesday. "They have a series of walls, I’m saying, 'It’s like perfect.' So, so, we are pushing very hard."

    Trump's plan for a border wall along the US-Mexico border has encountered many obstacles in Congress. The president has repeatedly claimed that construction on the wall is underway, but this is inaccurate

    SEE ALSO: Trump said his visit to the Flight 93 memorial for 9/11 victims gave him inspiration for his border wall

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Inside the Trump 'MAGA' hat factory


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    Rihanna KateHudson Ibiza Spain Atzaro (36 of 36)

    • While Ibiza is known as a party capital of the world, many wealthy and famous head to the lesser-known pastoral north of the island to relax.
    • One of the most luxurious and secluded resorts on the island is Atzaró Hotel and Spa, an agrotourism resort where Rihanna, Shakira, and other celebs have stayed.
    • I recently spent the day at Atzaró to see what it's like to live like a popstar. The food was good, the drinks were strong, and the grounds were stunning.

    The Spanish island of Ibiza is world-famous as a vacation and partying hotspot for the wealthy and the famous.

    Every summer sees the usual influx of actors, billionaires, and models and their entourages flooding in for wild parties at the island's bumping clubs and beautiful beaches.

    But what if you are looking for something a bit more secluded, classy, and chic? Ibiza has that, too.

    Enter the Atzaró Hotel and Spa, an agrotourism resort hidden in the northern countryside of the island. Considered one of the more prestigious hotels on the island, the resort opened in 2004 after being converted from a 300-year-old traditional farmhouse into the lavish 10-acre estate and gardens it is now.

    The hotel's hidden, serene location has made it a favorite of celebrities ranging from popstars Rihanna and Shakira to actress Kate Hudson, among others. 

    I recently visited Atzaró Hotel and Spa on a recent trip to Spain. Keep reading to see what it's like:

    SEE ALSO: I stayed at Robert De Niro's ridiculously swanky new hotel in Ibiza — and it makes you feel like a celebrity, if you can afford it

    DON'T MISS: I went on an epic road trip to find the best beach in 2018's hottest travel destination — and it did not disappoint

    Getting to Atzaró is a bit of a schlep. Located near Santa Eularia des Riu in the north of the island, it was a 30-minute ride from Sant Antoni de Portmany, one of the major towns on the island. It's about the same distance from Ibiza Town.



    The drive there was gorgeous. The ride revealed a lush, green countryside that I didn't even know existed on Ibiza. Located down a small country road, Atzaró is named after the mountain behind the property.



    The property was originally a finca, or Spanish farmhouse, built some 300 years ago, that served as the family home of owner and CEO Victor Guasch.



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    Jet Airways.JPG

    • Crew members on a Jet Airways flight from Mumbai to Jaipur, India, on Thursday forgot to press a switch to pressurize the plane, leading several passengers to report bleeding from their ears and noses due to low cabin pressure, CNN reported.
    • In a statement to Business Insider, Jet Airways said that "five guests who were referred to a hospital for additional medical check-up accompanied by the Jet Airways' Care team have since been released, post medical examination."
    • Cabin pressure is maintained by a flight's crew to ensure comfort for everyone aboard. When air pressure is lower, there is less oxygen available, and the air becomes thinner and drier, which can cause bleeding from the ears and nose.

    A Jet Airways flight from Mumbai to Jaipur, India, was forced to turn back on Thursday after its pilots failed to pressurize the jet after takeoff, causing several passengers to complain of bleeding from their ears and noses due to low cabin pressure, CNN reported.

    Jet Airways Flight 9W 697, a Boeing 737 with 166 passengers and five crew members, "made an air turn back due to loss in cabin pressure," Jet Airways said in a statement on Twitter.

    The Directorate General of Civil Aviation, India's aviation regulator, confirmed to the CNN affiliate News 18 India that the incident was caused by an error by the flight's crew members, saying that during the plane's climb they forgot to select "bleed switch," so cabin pressurization could not be maintained, and oxygen masks were deployed.

    "Engine bleed air" helps pressurize an airliner's cabin and provide air conditioning, according to Flying magazine.

    The flight's crew members have been taken off scheduled duties pending an investigation, Jet Airways said on Twitter.

    The airline told Business Insider in a separate statement that "five guests who were referred to a hospital for additional medical check-up accompanied by the Jet Airways' Care team have since been released, post medical examination."

    "The airline will continue to offer necessary medical care and attention to the concerned guests as required," Jet Airways added.

    Modern jetliners can cruise at altitudes of about 30,000 to 40,000 feet — levels with far lower air pressure than what our bodies are accustomed to. Cabin pressure is thus maintained by a flight's crew to ensure comfort for everyone aboard. When air pressure is lower, there is less oxygen available, and the air becomes thinner and drier, which can cause bleeding from the ears and nose.

    The flight-tracking website Flightradar24 tweeted an image showing Flight 9W 697's route.

    One passenger tweeted a video of what happened after oxygen masks dropped because of the sudden decrease in air pressure.

    In a statement to Business Insider, Jet Airways said that "144 of the 166 guests of the original flight traveled to Jaipur via an alternative flight of the airline, while 17 of them wished to travel at another point in time."

    Jet Airways added that it was "extending full cooperation to the DGCA for the ongoing investigation of the event."

    SEE ALSO: Multiple people got sick after a passenger brought pepper spray on a Hawaiian Airlines plane

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    woman work interview happy boss

    • Perks in the workplace sometimes subtly discourage you from leaving the office on time.
    • That's why Portland design firm Work & Co decided against including fun distractions, like Ping-Pong tables.
    • Employees tend to value traditional benefits like 401-Ks and paid-time-off policies anyway.


    Snazzy workplace perks aren't always innocuous.

    Sure, free or subsidized meals, beer on tap in the company kitchen, and arcade games tucked in the corners of the office sound fantastic. And they seem to be a staple at fancy tech offices, who are known to boast pastry chefs and karaoke machines. Such office elements have stoked the imaginations of office designers around the country, and we've seen some of these fun office benefits seep into other industries.

    But there's a growing backlash to eye-catching workplace perks. Critics hold that these kinds of enticing benefits mostly serve to keep employees in the office, to the detriment of their work-life balance. And a number of locales in California have accused free company cafeterias of harming local eateries, Business Insider reported.

    Architecture critic Rowan Moore wrote in the Guardian that companies — especially big tech outfits — are increasingly creating spaces "wherein staff offer their lives, body and soul, day and night, in return for gyms, Olympic-sized swimming pools, climbing walls, basketball courts, running tracks and hiking trails, indoor football pitches, massage rooms and hanging gardens, performance venues, amiable art and lovable graphics."

    Digital design and technology agency Work & Co decided to go in a completely different direction with its office in Portland, Oregon, according to Fast Company. The designers at Casework strived to eliminate most trappings of a traditionally trendy office, eschewing Ping-Pong tables and game consoles.

    "Our hope is that everyone leaves every day and gets home to their families and friends and doing the things they love to do outside of work because that motivates everyone to be better designers and developers," Work & Co partner Casey Sheehan told Fast Company.

    The idea of a more stripped-down, back-to-basics office seems especially promising, especially given the fact that people don't tend to put much importance on flashier perks. Business Insider previously reported that employees tend to prefer that companies focus on basic benefits like 401K plans, healthcare, and paid-time-off policies.

    SEE ALSO: The progression of office culture from the 50s to today

    DON'T MISS: A Stanford professor says, at the rate things are going, workplaces will only get more toxic in the future

    SEE ALSO: See the downtown Manhattan office where a fraction of IBM's global team works on technology of the future

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    Trump National Golf Club Sterling, Virginia

    • A group of paddlers who frequent along the Potomac River in Maryland are suing President Donald Trump and his administration.
    • They are angry that his frequent golf course visits are shutting down the river, the Washingtonian reported Thursday.
    • The Canoe Cruisers Association of Greater Washington filed a lawsuit in Maryland accusing the administration of failing to notify residents and surrounding businesses of a policy that prevented them from using part of the river.

    A group of paddlers are suing President Donald Trump and his administration for his frequent golf course visits shutting down the Potomac River, the Washingtonian reported Thursday.

    The Canoe Cruisers Association of Greater Washington filed a lawsuit in Maryland accusing the administration of failing to notify residents and surrounding businesses of a policy that prevented them from using part of the river.

    The fight between paddlers and the Trump White House has been going on since the US Coast Guard implemented a temporary shutdown of the river next to Trump National Golf Club in Sterling, Virginia last summer, according to the report. The 1.6-mile stretch is roughly 30 minutes upriver from Washington.

    The lawsuit specifically mentions Karl L. Schultz, who is the commandant of the Coast Guard, and Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, the Washingtonian reported.

    It says that the Coast Guard's policy prevents the public from legally enjoying this specific area of the river when Trump was ever at his golf club. It also alleges that DHS, under the leadership of Nielsen, ignored over 600 public comments from individuals who were negatively impacted by the policy.

    "The ball's been in their court for over a year," attorney Nitin Shaw told the Washingtonian. "We hope with this lawsuit they certainly do what is right and reverse this rule to accommodate the very serious ramifications on the paddling community."

    SEE ALSO: Step inside Trump's private golf club in Bedminster, New Jersey, where the president is spending his summer vacation

    DON'T MISS: A goat herd is helping Trump pay tens of thousands of dollars less in property taxes on his New Jersey properties

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    Elizabeth Warren

    • New polling has found that a solid majority of Sen. Elizabeth Warren's constituents don't want her to seek the Democratic nomination for president in 2020.
    • Fifty-eight percent of Massachusetts voters said they hope Warren doesn't run, despite the fact that a nearly identical percentage — 57% — view her favorably.
    • But Warren, who says she is focused on winning reelection this November, regularly tops lists of likely 2020 contenders.

    Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts has for months topped lists of Democrats angling to challenge Donald Trump for the presidency in 2020, but new polling has found that a solid majority of her constituents don't want her to seek the Democratic nomination.

    Fifty-eight percent of Massachusetts voters said they hope Warren doesn't run, despite the fact that nearly an identical percentage — 57% — view her favorably.

    Just 32% of the 500 voters surveyed in the Suffolk University/Boston Globe poll said Warren should run.

    "This was a shocking finding to me, given that Democrats like her so much, and she has been making moves to run for president. I would have expected her to be leading this list of potential Massachusetts presidential candidates," David Paleologos, the director of the poll, told the Boston Globe.

    Globe reporter James Pindell noted the "common thread" among 15 polled voters he spoke with was that Democratic voters, including women, "love Warren but worry she isn't electable and they don't want to take chances when it comes to beating Trump."

    Meanwhile, a larger segment of voters — 38% — said their state's former Democratic governor, Deval Patrick, should join the race. Patrick doesn't appear on many national lists of potential 2020 contenders.

    The Republican party quickly seized on the poll results, pushing out an email titled "not #WithHer."

    "She's running. But the people who know her best don't want her to," Republican National Committee's rapid response director Michael Ahrens wrote, concluding with Warren's own catchphrase, "Nevertheless, she persisted."

    The poll surveyed 500 voters between September 13-17 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.4 percentage points.

    SEE ALSO: Elizabeth Warren just rolled out a huge plan to fight government corruption and reform the way Washington works

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    maniacNetflix still has a good deal of original content in store for the rest of this year.

    2018 has already seen the premiere of many new original shows, including the sci-fi reboot "Lost In Space," David Letterman's talk show, and Matt Groening's animated series "Disenchantment."

    Among the shows still to come is the new series "Maniac," a dark comedy starring Jonah Hill and Emma Stone, which premieres Friday, and new seasons of Netflix originals "Big Mouth" and "House of Cards."

    On Thursday, Netflix announced that the third season of its Marvel series "Daredevil" will premiere on October 19.

    Netflix has said it will spend $8 billion on shows and movies in 2018 — up from the $6 billion it spent in 2017. 

    To help you sort through the service's released and upcoming content, we've compiled a list of original shows that Netflix has confirmed are coming out in 2018. This excludes movies, kids' shows, and series that might not come out until 2019 or later.

    Here are all the shows we know Netflix is for sure putting out this year, along with their release date if available:

    SEE ALSO: All 73 of Netflix's notable original shows, ranked from worst to best

    "Lovesick" (Season 3) — Released January 1

    Netflix description: "In his quest for true love, Dylan found chlamydia. Joined by friends Evie and Luke, he relives past encounters as he notifies all his former partners."



    "The End of the F***ing World" (Season 1) — Released January 5

    Netflix description: "A budding teen psychopath and a rebel hungry for adventure embark on a star-crossed road trip in this darkly comic series based on a graphic novel.



    "Disjointed" (Season 1 - Part 2) — Released January 12

    Netflix description: "Pot activist Ruth Whitefeather Feldman runs a medical marijuana dispensary while encouraging her loyal patients to chill out and enjoy the high life."



    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Mark Zuckerberg happy smile smiling cheerful congress

    • Facebook has launched its new dating service, which was teased earlier this year and rolled out in beta to employees a few months later.
    • For now, Facebook Dating is only available in Colombia, but the company is expected to bring it to other countries in the future.
    • The service is built into Facebook's core mobile app, but is separate from most features in it.
    • The service will compete against the likes of Tinder, Bumble, and OkCupid.

    Facebook is officially in the dating game, but for now, you'll have to be in Colombia to use it to find your next match.

    The social networking giant on Thursday launched its new dating feature, which it unveiled earlier this year. Facebook Dating is only available in the South American country, although the company is expected to eventually offer it in the US and other countries.

    "More than 200 million people have listed themselves as single in their relationship status on Facebook," Nathan Sharp, the product manager for the new dating feature, said in a statement. "We view this as an incredible opportunity to continue helping people build relationships in meaningful ways on Facebook."

    Facebook is offering the new feature as a service within its eponymous mobile app. Users have to opt into it. Once they do, Facebook will suggest potential matches based on interests and activities. Unlike Tinder, the leading dating app, Facebook's service doesn't allow users to swipe left or right to choose potential dates based on their looks alone.

    Although built within Facebook's app, the dating service is kept largely apart from it. The company won't suggest users' Facebook friends as possible matches, for example. And users' dating activity won't be posted to the News Feed or their Facebook profile pages.

    Facebook Dating has plenty of rivals

    Facebook is entering a crowded market, with apps ranging from Tinder to OkCupid to Bumble catering to singles looking for romantic connections. However, Facebook's wealth of knowledge about users' interests and activities could help give it a leg up. The company is hoping to distinguish the service from some of its rivals by focusing on helping users find long-term relationships, rather than hookups or one-night stands.

    Screen shots of Facebook Dating, a new dating service from the social network that launched in Colombia on September 20, 2018.

    The company announced the dating service at its F8 developer conference earlier this year and touted it as an example of how it is increasingly focusing on promoting "meaningful" interactions among its users. The service comes as usage of Facebook's primary service has been declining and trust in the company has been waning in the wake of a series of scandals and setbacks, including the leaking of data on some 87 million users to Cambridge Analytica, a data firm that was linked with President Donald Trump.

    SEE ALSO: The FCC boss who repealed net neutrality says Google, Facebook and Twitter might need 'transparency obligations'

    SEE ALSO: Facebook’s stock dropped by $120 billion this week, but critics are dead wrong for calling it ‘doomed’

    SEE ALSO: Facebook is hiring 'news credibility specialists' — after saying it didn't want to be in the business of judging news trustworthiness

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    WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 06: Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee on the third day of his Supreme Court confirmation hearing on Capitol Hill September 6, 2018 in Washington, DC. Kavanaugh was nominated by President Donald Trump to fill the vacancy on the court left by retiring Associate Justice Anthony Kennedy. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

    • Christine Blasey Ford's attorney told lawmakers on Thursday that Ford "would be prepared to testify next week" as long as she's offered "terms that are fair and which ensure her safety," The New York Times reported.
    • Ford has accused Judge Brett Kavanaugh, the Supreme Court nominee, of sexually assaulting her when they were in high school. He has denied the allegations.
    • Ford's attorney said she would like to set up a call on Thursday with lawmakers on the Senate Judiciary Committee to discuss the conditions under which Ford would testify.

    Christine Blasey Ford, the psychology professor who alleges that Judge Brett Kavanaugh, the Supreme Court nominee, sexually assaulted her when they were in high school, is reportedly negotiating with the Senate Judiciary Committee about telling its members her story.

    She "would be prepared to testify next week" as long as she is offered "terms that are fair and which ensure her safety," her attorney said in an email to the committee that was obtained by The New York Times.

    In the email, Ford's lawyer said that she would like to talk with the committee on Thursday about the conditions under which Ford would testify but that it was not possible for Ford to do so on Monday, the day Republicans on the committee have set for a hearing.

    The lawyer, Debra Katz, said it was Ford's "strong preference" that an investigation into her allegations be conducted before her testimony. Katz didn't immediately respond to Business Insider's request for comment on the email.

    "As you are aware, she has been receiving death threats, which have been reported to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and she and her family have been forced out of their home," the email said, according to The Times. "She wishes to testify, provided that we can agree on terms that are fair and which ensure her safety."

    Kavanaugh, who has denied the allegations, has agreed to testify.

    According to The Times, Republicans on Thursday decided to enlist an independent attorney with experience litigating assault cases to question Ford, rather than having the 11 male Republicans on the committee do so.

    SEE ALSO: Spokeswoman for group supporting Kavanaugh says sexual assault allegations could have been 'rough horseplay'

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    Big Bang theory

    As the year flies by, the list of canceled TV shows piles up.

    While there's been somewhat of a quiet period since May, some networks are still cutting shows throughout the summer.

    The most recent cancellations come from AMC, which just confirmed to Vulture that "Dietland" will end after only one season, and HBO, which renewed "The Deuce" for a third and final season to air in 2019.

    ABC canceled the previously renewed "Roseanne" revival in late May, after Roseanne Barr posted a racist tweet about former Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett. However, ABC announced a spin-off called "The Conners" without Barr coming this fall.

    In other notable cancellations, USA's critically acclaimed "Mr. Robot" will end with its upcoming fourth season, and CBS' "The Big Bang Theory" is ending after 12 seasons. 

    We'll update this list as more are announced.

    Here are all the shows that have been canceled this year, including those from networks and Netflix:

    SEE ALSO: The worst TV show of every year since 2000, according to critics

    Amazon



    "Jean-Claude Van Johnson" — Amazon, one season



    "I Love Dick" — Amazon, one season



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    yacht people

    • Yacht trends are changing. 
    • More and more, people who order custom-made yachts no longer want offices onboard. 
    • Increasingly, yacht travelers want to relax during their excursions.

     

    Yachters are sick of working. 

    At least, that's what a recent trend in superyacht design may signify. Andreas Iseli, head of Winch Design yacht exteriors, told CNN that those who order custom superyachts don't want offices on-board anymore.

    "It used to be satellite domes and offices so they could keep working and now we get the request more and more 'I don't want to work on my boat, I'm off for two weeks,' so that's probably the ultimate luxury for these people," Iseli said to CNN

    A superyacht is like your typical, humdrum, run-of-the-mill yacht, except it's at least 78 feet long and may employ up to 50 people at a time to keep it running. There are at least 5,000 superyachts in the world, a number that the Warsash Maritime Academy says has been growing. 

    What kind of person buys a superyacht? Someone who can afford the price tag, which may total in the tens of millions before the yearly upkeep bill, and someone who wants to really get away from it all when they go on vacation.

    "A superyacht isn't a toy, but it's the ultimate place to go and be away from it all," Iseli said. "We have clients who literally go two weeks a year on their yacht and switch off."

    That demand for relaxation extends beyond just getting rid of the once-typical superyacht office. Arthur Brouwer, the CEO of Heesen Yachts, also told CNN that some clients request that they don't hear the boat, so they try to reduce the sounds and vibrations as much as possible.

    In lieu of home offices, superyacht owners are adding a slew of interesting features to their pleasure crafts. 

    Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen's superyacht, dubbed the Octopus, has a pool, a basketball court, 41 suites, and a recording studio. The Sultan of Oman owns a 509-foot-long yacht that can host more than 60 guests and a concert hall with room for a 50-piece orchestra. 

    SEE ALSO: I spent 3 years writing about yachts, and owning one takes way more money than you think

    DON'T MISS: The world's most expensive superyachts come with helipads, movie theaters, and swimming pools — take a look

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    Michael Cohen

    • Michael Cohen reportedly sat down for hours of interviews with the special counsel Robert Mueller that spanned several sessions last month.
    • Mueller asked Cohen about President Donald Trump's business dealings with Russia, potential collusion with Russia, and whether Trump or any of his associates had discussed a pardon with Cohen, ABC News reported Thursday.
    • Cohen is a key figure in multiple threads of the Russia investigation, and his lawyer, Lanny Davis, said earlier that given his role as one of the president's closest confidants, Cohen "knows almost everything about Mr. Trump."

    Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump's former longtime lawyer and fixer, sat down with the special counsel Robert Mueller for hours of interviews spanning multiple sessions over the last month, ABC News reported Thursday.

    Mueller is said to have asked Cohen about every aspect of Trump's dealings — financial, political, and otherwise — with Russian interests.

    The special counsel is tasked with investigating Russia's interference in the 2016 US election and whether members of the Trump campaign colluded with Moscow to tilt the race in his favor. Cohen was the subject of a separate investigation by the Manhattan US attorney's office into whether he committed financial crimes and campaign finance violations connected to two payments made shortly before the election to women who claim to have had affairs with Trump.

    Cohen pleaded guilty last month to eight counts of tax evasion, one count of bank fraud, and two counts related to campaign-finance violations. He is now cooperating with that investigation, as well as a separate New York state investigation into the Trump Organization.

    But his sit-down with Mueller was entirely voluntary, sources told ABC News, and did not include any promise of leniency on the part of prosecutors.

    In addition to discussing Trump's business dealings and potential collusion with Russia, Mueller's team also reportedly asked Cohen whether Trump or any of his associates discussed the possibility of a pardon with Cohen.

    That line of questioning would suggest the special counsel is continuing to gather new information as part of a parallel investigation into whether Trump sought to obstruct justice after the existence of the Russia investigation became public knowledge last year.

    What does Cohen know?

    Michael Cohen and Donald Trump

    Cohen is a key figure in several threads of the Russia investigation, including the creation of a Russia-friendly "peace plan" during the early days of Trump's presidency, as well as an allegation that Cohen traveled to Prague during the summer of 2016 to meet with Kremlin-linked officials.

    Cohen was also central to the Trump Organization's push to build a Trump Tower in Moscow at the height of the campaign.

    Felix Sater, the Russian-born businessman and Trump associate who worked with Cohen to push the deal, confirmed earlier this year that the Trump Organization was actively negotiating with a sanctioned Russian bank to secure financing for the deal at the height of the election.

    Last month, it also emerged that Cohen had said Trump knew in advance about a Russian lawyer's offer to the campaign of "dirt" on the Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton in 2016. Cohen is said to have claimed that he was one of the people in the room when Trump greenlit the meeting, which is one of the focal points of the Russia probe.

    Cohen's lawyer, Lanny Davis, later walked back that claim, however, saying he could not independently confirm it.

    When news first broke in April that FBI agents had raided Cohen's property as part of their investigation into him, Trump defended him and slammed the raid as a "disgraceful situation."

    "It's a total witch hunt," he said at the time, adding that "attorney=client privilege is dead."

    But when it emerged that Cohen had pleaded guilty, the president turned on his former lawyer and excoriated him for striking a deal with prosecutors.

    It's unclear how much useful information Cohen had for the special counsel.

    But Davis suggested last month that Cohen could shed light on quite a bit.

    "Mr. Cohen has knowledge on certain subjects that should be of interest to the special counsel, and is more than happy to tell the special counsel all that he knows," Davis said during an interview with MSNBC's Rachel Maddow.

    In a later interview on CNN, Davis suggested Cohen's tenure in Trump's inner circle made him privy to details that have yet to be revealed to Mueller and the broader Russia probe.

    "Michael Cohen, being a lawyer for Donald Trump for many, many years, knows almost everything about Mr. Trump," Davis said.

    SEE ALSO: Experts say federal investigators now have 'the perfect storm of cooperators' against Trump

    DON'T MISS: How the president and his defenders' explanations of the Stormy Daniels-Micheal Cohen scandal have evolved over time

    Join the conversation about this story »

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