Self-Driving Trucks: Automation that Can Save Lives on the Road

Posted on: July 25th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

ABC News(NEW YORK) — Highway workers face many dangers in active road work zones. Despite safety measures, their lives are at risk every day as they perform repairs on our roadways.

Their first line of defense are warning signs and arrow boards for drivers to know of road work ahead. But another important safety measure is the truck-mounted attenuator, which provides a safety barrier between moving vehicles and workers on the road.

Royal Truck & Equipment has created the first autonomous truck-mounted attenuator that promises to add an extra layer of safety.

“In an effort to remove the driver and workers from an unsafe situation, we identified this as an opportunity to try to take drivers out of the truck and replace it with the autonomous technology,” Royal Truck & Equipment CEO Robert Roy said.

Attenuators are designed to be a crash cushion and barrier. They use an aluminum honey comb filled with air or sand to absorb or redirect a colliding vehicle away from the workers and machinery, and have been credited with saving lives. The attenuators are mounted on the back of trucks.

The typical work zone safety setup has workers or machinery in front of the manned truck-mounted attenuator. The autonomous truck will add an extra layer of safety since it will be behind the manned vehicle.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 49 road workers were killed by moving vehicles in 2014.

This autonomous technology was developed by Micro Systems Inc., a firm that has provided unmanned vehicles to the military. Micro Systems’ “Multi-Platform Appliqué Kit” has a vehicle-controlled computer that controls motors to let the vehicle know when to turn, accelerate, stop and avoid obstacles while mimicking the exact speed, heading and the direction of the leader vehicle.

The trucks can be retrofitted to be autonomous with mechanical actuators that replicate the leading manned vehicle and replicate steering, breaking and the acceleration from GPS data supplied by the manned vehicle.

“We are pioneering this industry. We are using the latest cutting-edge technology to make work environments a safer place,” said Maynard Factor, the business development manager for Micro Systems.

Royal Truck & Equipment is currently testing the technology and hopes one day to have these trucks on the road.

“Every day, we feel better about what we do and that’s the juice that keeps us going when we built these trucks,” Roy said.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

How Megyn Kelly’s Silence Signaled the Worst for Roger Ailes

Posted on: July 24th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — The silence was the sign.

Roger Ailes, the powerful Fox News chief, first realized his career at the helm of the network he built was in jeopardy when evening anchor Megyn Kelly refused repeated overtures to issue a public statement of support, according to a source familiar with the internal discussions.

Greta Van Susteren, Bill O’Reilly and Maria Bartiromo had already defended Ailes. But Kelly was invisible -– ominously so.

At the center of this year’s presidential campaign, Kelly was being asked, cajoled and even pressured outright to pledge her support for Ailes in the first days after sex-harassment claims were lodged, two sources said. And when Kelly declined to play along, a sense of doom quickly creeped over Ailes and his cabinet of advisers.

“And what about Megyn?” was the question asked inside Ailes’ war room. “There’s a problem with Megyn. Let’s talk offline.”

The following is an account from inside Fox, based on interviews with multiple sources with direct knowledge of what occurred. Ailes’ attorney, Susan Estrich, did not respond to a request for comment.

Ailes resigned under pressure Thursday, just after the stock market’s close. In the 24 hours preceding that announcement, it had become almost a given that Ailes was being ushered out of the network he built by his boss, Rupert Murdoch, and Murdoch’s sons, Lachlan and James.

Though such an exit was almost unthinkable just a week earlier, Ailes had already come to grips with what was the shocking new reality.

The crisis exploded July 6 when former Fox News host Gretchen Carlson filed a sex-harassment lawsuit against Ailes. Fox was not named in the case.

Quickly, Ailes assembled a war room at his home in Bergen County, New Jersey. Chief among those advising Ailes was his wife, Beth. In the room or dialed in on all-points conference calls were friends, and, importantly, PR and legal staff from Fox News, who were technically not even involved in the case.

Ailes made it clear to his team that he thought Lachlan and James Murdoch would try to use the Carlson lawsuit as a vehicle to remove him from his perch. After a career of battles -– both in politics and media -– Ailes figured he’d be able to strategize and scrap his way through and stay on top.

“We’re not going to let them win,” Ailes said of the Murdoch heirs.

In keeping with Ailes’ take-no-prisoners style, it was decided that the defense would be a blistering offense. And key to that would be a campaign of public pronouncements of support from Fox employees, to be led by those with the highest profile and best ratings. Quickly, the litany of A-listers coming out in support of their embattled boss would include Van Susteren, O’Reilly, Bartiromo, Jeanine Pirro and Neil Cavuto.

“It was an unbelievable campaign,” one insider told ABC News. “There was enormous pressure.”

And the pressure was most extreme to get Kelly on board. She had taken center stage in public battles this year with Donald Trump and she is perceived to be both a strong woman and an independent thinker. Getting Kelly on board would be a coup and was to send messages both to the wider world and those inside Fox headquarters in Midtown Manhattan that things would be OK for Ailes.

Kelly wouldn’t do what Ailes wanted. (Kelly declined to comment to ABC News.)

She did, however, speak with the team of investigators retained by the Murdochs to probe what was happening at Fox. The law firm brought in to do the investigation told Fox staffers they wanted to know whether others had experienced harassment by Ailes. They started with those, like Kelly, who were headed to the Republican National Convention in Cleveland.

During that session, Kelly told investigators about harassment from Ailes she had suffered years earlier. Ailes would soon find out about that interview and news accounts detailing her account would follow quickly.

But that’s not when Ailes first realized his career at the network he founded was over. That moment had already come –- with a burst of silence.

Ailes, through his lawyers, has denied harassing Carlson or Kelly.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

No Powerball Winner in Saturday’s Drawing, Jackpot Grows to $422 Million

Posted on: July 24th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) —  If you didn’t have the winning numbers for Saturday night’s Powerball drawing — which was an estimated $391 million jackpot — don’t be upset: No one else won either.

The Texas Lottery confirmed early Sunday morning that there were no winners. Saturday’s jackpot was the ninth largest in the game’s history.

Saturday’s numbers were 39, 5, 35, 7, 23. The Powerball was 11.

Now the estimated jackpot for Wednesday’s drawing is $422 million.

Powerball Estimated Jackpot for 07/27/2016: AP: $422 Million, CVO: $291.8 Million

— Texas Lottery (@TexasLottery) July 24, 2016

The odds of a $2 ticket hitting the jackpot are more than 292 million to 1.

The jackpot has been won only 3 times this year compared to a dozen times in 2015.

Powerball is played in 44 states, Washington, D.C., the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

How This Family of Thieves Who Tried to Hide Almost $4M in Stolen Cash Were Finally Caught

Posted on: July 23rd, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

FBI(MILWAUKEE) — Archie Cabello was living a quiet life in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, working as an armed courier who delivered money to banks and businesses all over town, when he hatched a plan that would change his family’s life forever.

From 1995 to 2005, Cabello used his wife and son as accomplices to steal nearly $4 million.

It was a case that would leave the FBI and authorities in two states scratching their heads for more than a decade, until the IRS became involved and discovered a suspicious paper trail and Cabello’s son, Vincent, finally came forward.


According to federal prosecutors, Archie Cabello committed a Detroit robbery in the 1970s with his brother and then left town without giving his brother his cut of the money.

In 1995, FBI special agent Ken O’Connor said Cabello was a 48-year-old former Marine working for an armored delivery services company and decided to plan another robbery.

“The two people he was assigned with were, one had been on the job for a week, the other had been on the job for two weeks, so he was the senior guy,” O’Conner said.

For several days leading up to the heist, authorities said Cabello and his wife Marian Cabello practiced a routine. She would leave her job at a local café, seemingly on a lunch break, go for drive, park the car and watch for her husband’s armored truck to drive past.

Then one day, the FBI said Archie Cabello hit the hazard lights on the truck, and Marian pulled out of her parking spot and followed him to a strip mall where Cabello was scheduled to make a stop at a bank.

“He’s on paperwork showing he signed for the bag at 12:30 [p.m.], a bag that had about $157,000, give or take,” O’Connor said.

As the other two couriers were on a break, authorities said Cabello pulled the truck around to the back of the bank and parked next to Marian’s car, who was waiting there.

“He opened the driver door, tossed the bag into her open window, onto the passenger side seat and they both drive off,” O’Connor said.

When his bosses asked Cabello what happened to the money, he claimed he didn’t know. The other two couriers, who authorities said had no idea the money had been stolen, also said they didn’t know what happened.

Cabello was fired and the Milwaukee police and the FBI investigated the incident, but neither could pin down a suspect nor find the money.

“At the time, there wasn’t a lot of evidence, other than, you know, his story,” O’Connor said.


Two years after Archie Cabello’s son, Vincent Cabello, was honorably discharged from the U.S. Army after serving as a paratrooper, Archie roped him into his second heist.

At the time, prosecutors said Vincent had gotten a job at a security corporation in the Milwaukee area, guarding the night vault in the basement of a commercial building.

Vincent worshipped his father, authorities said, and felt “trapped” into going along with it.

“The plan they came up with was Archie would stage a robbery, he would act like a robber from beginning to end,” O’Connor said.

Archie showed up wearing a bushy beard, a backwards baseball hat and yellow-tinted sunglasses, armed with a BB gun. Authorities said Vincent Cabello had closed the vault door but purposefully didn’t spin the dial to lock it.

After Archie entered the building, authorities said the father and son team put on a big performance for the security cameras, with Archie yelling “freeze” and Vincent seeming to comply. Archie handcuffed his son, went into the vault and stole $730,000.

Det. Ron Laura questioned Vincent, and even though he didn’t break, he began to think it might have been an inside job.

“I was a little skeptical of why he wasn’t a little bit more shaken up,” Laura said. “With Vincent standing by his story, we had no probable cause to arrest him.”


One year after the second Milwaukee heist, the Cabellos moved to Portland, Oregon. By 1999, the family had moved 21 times in 18 years.

FBI had begun to suspect members of the Cabello family, but they seemed to be living paycheck to paycheck. The family rented a modest home for $975 a month in Portland, and Archie drove a beat-up, older model car, showing no obvious signs of living beyond their means.

Authorities said Archie went years without holding onto a job – that is, until his pile of stolen cash started running out.


In March 2005, Archie Cabello landed a new job with another armored delivery services company in Portland. His responsibilities included making pick-ups and deliveries for banks and government offices, including the U.S. Federal Reserve.

“He was pretty quiet, kept to himself,” said Kirk Gulian, a former operations manager for the company, “Archie seemed like a reliable worker, nothing really stood out.”

Just 10 months into the job, authorities said Cabello launched his next plan. On Dec. 6, 2005, the FBI said he was supposed to pick up a large container full of cash for delivery across town. But before Archie could reach his destination he claimed he was robbed by a bearded gunman.

“Archie told me that an armed robber came up to the armored car, displayed his hand gun and said, ‘Open the door,’” said FBI special agent Don Metcalf. “The armed robber, according to Archie during the interview, says, ‘Start driving.’”

Cabello was later found parked near a church, where a dog walker happened to be passing by. Authorities said the dog walker saw Cabello handcuffed to the truck’s front door and called 911. Cabello told the 911 operator that a man held a gun to his head and took a “couple of bags of money.” Over $7 million was on the armored car that day, the FBI said, including two shrink-wrapped bricks containing $1.5 million each in hundred-dollar bills that was missing.

As police scoured the area looking for the gunman Cabello had described to them, Cabello quit his job. Authorities realized the two bricks, totaling in $3 million, was missing from his truck, and started to suspect the armed robbery had been faked.

“The truck protection is sufficient enough to handle pistol rounds,” O’Connor said, which led him to question why Cabello would have opened the truck door when he would have known the glass and door were bulletproof.

Four days after the “robbery,” the FBI went to Cabello’s home with a search warrant and found more than 100 credit cards and 620 money order receipts, but not the stolen cash. Authorities were unable to make an arrest at that time.

“We didn’t catch them with the money, we didn’t catch him red-handed doing anything,” O’Connor said.

Prosecutors brought in IRS agent Miranda Cole to go over the credit card information and money order receipts found in the home search.

“He was really smart in how he spent his money,” Cole said. “He was renting his house. He had older vehicles. He had credit card expenses, but they were not extravagant.”

Their investigation found that Archie Cabello had made about $44,000 in legitimate earnings over a four-year period after the 2005 Oregon robbery, but the family had spent more than a quarter million dollars on the credit cards.

“They would purchase things on the credit cards and pay the bills off with these money orders, and of course, money orders can only be purchased in cash,” said Assistant U.S. Attorney Claire Fay.

But then Cabello’s son Vincent bought a Hummer and paid in cash, which is how authorities knew the Cabellos still had the money.


Four days before the statute of limitations for charging someone with a crime expired on the 2005 Oregon robbery, authorities arrested Archie, Marian and Vincent Cabello.

Facing a 51-count indictment for conspiracy to steal and possess bank money, false statements in credit card applications, filing a false tax return, and money laundering, the Cabellos were released, pending trial.


In February 2012, prosecutors received a call from Vincent Cabello’s lawyer, saying he was ready to cooperate with authorities.

“He was very willing to tell a long story of how this had started in the ‘90s and it carried through to 2005, when they committed the large $3 million theft,” said Assistant U.S. Attorney Tom Edmonds. “He was, in a way, getting something off his chest.”

Authorities said Vincent told them about a safe deposit box in Bellevue, Washington, that his father had set up under a fake name. Records show this was where Archie Cabello had stashed the stolen $3 million and he had visited the safe deposit box more than 50 times to take cash back to Portland.

According to Vincent, Archie Cabello used the cash to buy money orders to pay off the credit cards and also gave cash to his wife and son, hidden in household product containers with false bottoms around the house, the FBI said.

When authorities opened the safe deposit box, it still had roughly $1.9 million inside.

During questioning, FBI special agent Ken O’Connor said Vincent admitted he and his father had carried out the Portland robbery.

He said his father sent his fellow courier inside the bank for a pick-up, then took off and called Vincent from a throwaway phone to get into position.

Vincent told authorities that Archie then pulled the truck near the pre-arranged meeting point in a neighborhood called Ladd’s Addiction. As Archie kept the truck moving to avoid suspicion, Vincent secretly jumped onto the truck, filled two bags of cash totaling $3 million, and waited until Archie drove back past Vincent’s vehicle, where Vincent then jumped off, taking Archie’s throwaway phone with him.

After Vincent was off the truck, authorities said that was when Archie drove to the church, handcuffed himself, and waited.

After Vincent’s confession, Archie and Marian Cabello were re-arrested for violating the terms of their release and held in custody until trial.

Vincent later testified against his father in federal court.


In March 2013, Vincent and Marian Cabello received a 15-month prison sentence each for their roles in the Portland theft. Both had previously pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit bank fraud and conspiracy to commit money laundering, but their sentences were reduced for cooperating with police.

Archie Cabello, acting as his own attorney at trial, pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 20 years in a federal prison in Texas for stealing $3 million from an Oregon armored services truck. Cabello had previously pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit bank larceny, possession of stolen bank funds, making false statements on credit applications, making and subscribing to a false income tax return, and money laundering. He is due to be released in July 2029.

The Cabellos declined “20/20” requests for comment on this report.

“Having this money was a huge break in the case,” said prosecutor Claire Fay. “It would have been a much more difficult case without the money.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Walt Disney’s California Home Saved From Demolition, For Now

Posted on: July 23rd, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

The Walt Disney Company(NEW YORK) —  A Craftsman bungalow in the Los Feliz neighborhood of Los Angeles that was once the home of Walt Disney has been temporarily saved from demolition.

The Los Angeles Office of Historical Resources on Wednesday put a 75-day hold on the two-bedroom home that is said to be the Disney founder’s first home in Los Angeles.

Ken Bernstein, the Office of Historical Resources’ manager and principal city planner, told ABC News his department took action after the home’s current owners applied for a demolition permit.

“We initiated the hold for three reasons,” Bernstein said. “The demolition appeared imminent, we had already identified the property as significant in our city-wide survey, and because of the iconic status of Walt Disney to Los Angeles and Southern California and internationally.”

Disney rented the home from his uncle in 1923, reports Los Angeles ABC station KABC-TV. He and his brother, Roy Disney, later moved to an apartment across the street but set up a studio in the bungalow’s cottage when they lived there.

The Disney brothers would go on to co-found a movie studio and open Disney theme parks. Disney is the parent company of ABC News.

The home’s current owners, identified by city records as Sang Ho Yoo and Krystal Soonbae Kim Yoo, could not be immediately reached by ABC News.

Bernstein said his office is now in the process of putting together a “more comprehensive nomination” for the property to be considered as a Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument.

“It is not a step we take lightly,” Bernstein said. “This is so the property’s history can be fully evaluated before any demolition could be considered.”

Once the nomination is submitted, it will go to the city’s Cultural Heritage Commission. The final decision will be made by the Los Angeles City Council.

Bernstein said he expects the Cultural Heritage Commission hearing to not happen until September.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Carlson Lawyer: ‘Ailes Harassed Women in Every Decade Since the ’60s’

Posted on: July 22nd, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Noam Galai/Getty Images for GIFF(NEW YORK) — A day after Roger Ailes stepped down as chairman of Fox News amid sexual harassment allegations, the attorney behind the lawsuit that kicked off the scandal claims that Ailes’ alleged harassment goes back decades.

Ailes, who has denied the claims against him, resigned from his post at the top of Fox News yesterday weeks after former network anchorwomen Gretchen Carlson filed a lawsuit against him alleging that he “sabotaged” her career because she “refused his sexual advances” and that she was fired for rebuffing him and complaining to him about sexual harassment.

Carlson’s lawyer, Nancy Smith, told ABC News Friday that the lawsuit was still pending, and noted that since it was filed, several women have come forward with their own allegations.

“I’ve spoken to women in every decade since the ’60s who have been harassed by Roger Ailes — well up into the 2000s and up to 2010,” she said. “For some, it’s quite traumatic.”

The lawyer also said that her client’s position could be improved because of Ailes’ rapid exit.

“A jury could definitely draw some conclusions by Mr. Ailes’ quick departure,” she said. “Our case continues.”

Ailes, who had overseen the network since its inception two decades ago, resigned effective immediately earlier this week, saying in a letter to his boss that he would “not allow [his] presence to become a distraction from the work that must be done every day to ensure that Fox News and Fox Business continue to lead our industry.”

Ailes’ boss, Rupert Murdoch, assumed control of Fox News as chairman and acting CEO.

Smith said that she and Carlson were “surprised” by the resignation and never imagined it happening so fast, saying “we were in it for the long haul.”

She said that Carlson’s legal team had not shared evidence from their case with investigators who were conducting an internal review for Fox News, suggesting that Ailes’ resignation was based on what was learned in the internal investigation.

Requests for comment to Ailes’ lawyer, Susan Estrich, were not immediately returned. Fox News did not immediately return ABC News’ request for comment.

However, in the past, Ailes has said that “Gretchen Carlson’s allegations are false. This is a retaliatory suit for the network’s decision not to renew her contract, which was due to the fact that her disappointingly low ratings were dragging down the afternoon lineup.”

In response to Smith’s claim that other women have made similar allegations against Ailes, his outside counsel, Barry Asen, told New York magazine earlier this month: “It has become obvious that Ms. Carlson and her lawyer are desperately attempting to litigate this in the press because they have no legal case to argue. The latest allegations, all 30 to 50 years old, are false.”

Carlson’s case will return to court on Aug. 15, when it is expected that a decision will be made over whether the case will be heard in New York or New Jersey.

Ailes’ immediate future was not clear.

A corporate source previously told ABC News that the former chairman will be available as an informal adviser to Murdoch, but would not be advising Fox News directly nor would he be a regular fixture inside the organization. That source was speaking on the condition of anonymity, because the source was not authorized to speak publicly about the matter.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

US Stocks Close Higher with S&P 500 Hitting New High

Posted on: July 22nd, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Stocks hit their fourth straight week of gains after closing in the green on Friday.

The Dow closed up 53.56 (+0.29 percent) to finish at 18,570.79.

The Nasdaq gained 26.26 (+0.52 percent) to close at 5,100.16, while the S&P 500 closed at 2,175.03, up 9.86 (+0.46 percent) from its open to hit a new record.

Crude oil dropped over 1 percent with prices hitting about $44 a barrel.

Yahoo: Verizon is reportedly close to a deal acquiring Yahoo’s internet business, according to the Wall Street Journal. There were no specifics given in the report, but sources told WSJ that terms could be reached within days. The news helped push Yahoo’s stock up over 1 percent at the close.

American Airlines: American Airlines’ shares soared over 4 percent after beating experts’ expectations on profit in the second-quarter, helped by cheaper fuel, but still falling 44 percent from a year ago. The airline reported earning $950 million for $1.77 earnings per share in quarter two.

Nintendo: Nintendo’s stock continued to enjoy its rally after the wildly successful Pokemon Go mobile game was finally released in Japan, where Pokemon originated in the 1990’s. The launch was paired with a McDonald’s sponsorship deal including Pokemon-themed meals.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Mobile Game ‘Pokemon Go’ Launches in Japan, Home of Pokemon

Posted on: July 22nd, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

iStock/Thinkstock(TOKYO) — The wait is finally over in Japan.

On Friday, Japanese Pokemon fans were able to play the wildly successful “Pokemon Go” mobile game where Pokemon first originated in the 1990’s.

The launch of the app, released in the U.S. a few weeks ago, is partnered with a McDonalds sponsorship deal selling Pokemon-themed meals in Japan.

Japanese officials issued warnings for the gamers ahead of the release including asking them to use unique names and to stay away from “dangerous zones” while playing, according to the Japan Times.

“I want people to abide by the warning so that people can play it on smartphones safely,” Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said Thursday, according to BBC.

The global success of Pokemon Go has helped Nintendo’s stock price more than double since the release.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Meet Graham, Who Survives Car Crashes So Others Can Live

Posted on: July 22nd, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Victoria Transport Accident Commission(VICTORIA, Australia) — What he lacks in looks, he makes up for in evolutionary prowess. Meet Graham, the “only person designed to survive” a car crash.

The Transport Accident Commission (TAC) of Victoria, Australia, spearheaded Graham’s creation. An artist collaborated with a trauma surgeon and a crash investigation expert to create “an interactive lifelike sculpture … designed with bodily features that might be present in humans if they had evolved to withstand the forces involved in crashes,” according to a news release.

Among the features are an enlarged skull, a flat fatty face, and a rib cage replete with “sacks” to function like an airbag.

TAC officials hope Graham will help people understand the importance of designing safer roadways.

“Cars have evolved a lot faster than humans and Graham helps us understand why we need to improve every aspect of our roads system to protect ourselves from our own mistakes,” TAC chief executive Joe Calafiore said in a statement.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Last VCR Manufacturer Is Ceasing Production

Posted on: July 22nd, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Hemera/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Don’t adjust your monitor — you’re reading this right: the VCR is dead. Or, it’s soon to be.

For those of you who may have fond — or not-so-fond — memories of the video cassette recorder, Friday is a day to feel old and wallow in VCR nostalgia that younger generations will only experience through stories of the device that changed TV viewing habits for those who had been at the mercy of broadcast schedules.

The last VCR is set to be produced in Japan by the end of the month, according to the BBC. A company called Funai Electric — which has been producing VCRs for 33 years — will cease production, the BBC reported, citing the Japanese newspaper Nikkei.

VCRs were the way videos were watched at home before DVDs and streaming video services reigned supreme.

Funai produced only 750,000 units last year, which sounds like a lot, but when compared to the 15 million units per year that it reportedly sold at the technology’s peak popularity, isn’t all that much.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

The Skyrocketing Cost of Being a Delegate

Posted on: July 22nd, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

ABC News(CLEVELAND) — Brushing shoulders with lawmakers, voting on rules about how the country conducts its democracy, witnessing history in the making…attending a national convention as a party delegate can be a once in a lifetime opportunity for political junkies.

But it costs a pretty penny.

Several delegates at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland told ABC News they had to budget around $3,000 to $4,000 for the week. Eric Rohback from Washington State said a few people “deserved a spot, but declined to run due to family budget restraints.”

For security and transportation reasons, planning committees for both the RNC and Democratic National Convention requested that each state delegation stay at specifically assigned hotels where they had reserved blocks of rooms. The costs of those rooms, according to delegates, range from $300 to over $800 a night.

“I think everyone kind of has sticker shock,” said Christine Pellegrino, a Bernie Sanders delegate from Long Island, New York, who is attending the DNC next week. “We’re the 99. We are not the 1 percent, that is for sure.”

“For a lot of us, it is a heavy lift,” she added.

Pellegrino is staying at the Loews Hotel in Philadelphia, which was officially assigned to the New York delegation. The cost at the Loews, according several members of the state’s delegation, is approximately $500/night before tax.

Another New York delegate, Virginia Ramos Rios, said she thought local hotels had gouged prices. “I was surprised that the party, which is a national organization, had not negotiated better group rates considering that they have guaranteed occupancy,” Ramos Rios said.

She is taking the train from New York and budgeting $3,000 for the whole trip. Like many cash-strapped delegates, she started a GoFundMe webpage to crowdsource funds for the trip. So far, she has raised over $2,000.

In May, network engineer Raymond Barun launched the site that linked to fundraising websites for almost half the senator’s delegates. He said the majority of folks were budgeting between $3,000 to $5,000 for the convention, but for delegates arriving from Guam and Puerto Rico, the total cost could be as much as $10,000 for the week.

“These people are taking on debt to participate in the process,” Barun said. “We try to put out the proverbial fire. We see this problem with fundraising and said, ‘Let’s get a site up that aggregates all of these fundraising links.’”

Yamina Roland, a Sanders delegate traveling from California, is planning to stay with a friend in Philadelphia to save money.

“I don’t understand how you can leverage a block of rooms for thousands of people and the best rate you can come up with is $700 a night,” Roland said. “That is even bad business for, like, Trump. I think it was definitely done to keep those of out who are not establishment politicians or even die-hard loyalist Democrats.”

Many delegates are sharing rooms to save money, and some are missing work or taking vacation time to attend the conference.

Alma Hernandez, a Clinton delegate from Tucson, Arizona, agreed that money had played a big role in the delegate process.

“I think it’s a little unfortunate that some people are unable to go because they don’t have the funds for it,” Hernandez said, who also set up a fundraising page. “I wish that other people had the opportunity.”

Morgan Finkelstein, a spokesperson for the DNC, told ABC News in a statement: “We understand and appreciate the commitment that all of our delegates make to the nominating convention. Over the last three cycles in particular the internet has lowered the bar for participation by making it easier for potential delegates to get their message out and to leverage tools for crowd funding to help them perform this vital role.”
Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Roger Ailes out as Fox News Chairman

Posted on: July 21st, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Photo by Wesley Mann/FOX News via Getty Images(NEW YORK) —  Fox News Chairman and CEO Roger Ailes has resigned from the company effective immediately, 21st Century Fox announced in a press release.

According to the release, Rupert Murdoch will take over as chairman and acting CEO of Fox News Channel and Fox Business Network.

“Roger Ailes has made a remarkable contribution to our company and our country,” said Murdoch. “Roger shared my vision of a great and independent television organization and executed it brilliantly over 20 great years.”

He added: “I am personally committed to ensuring that Fox News remains a distinctive, powerful voice.”

Ailes’ resignation comes after former anchor Gretchen Carlson, a mainstay of the network for 11 years, left Fox News on June 23 and shortly afterward filed a lawsuit against her former boss. In it, she alleges that Ailes had “sabotaged” her career after she “refused his sexual advances,” and that her job was terminated in retaliation for rebuffing him and complaining to him about sexual harassment.

Fox News and Ailes have denied Carlson’s allegations in the past.

“Gretchen Carlson’s allegations are false. This is a retaliatory suit for the network’s decision not to renew her contract, which was due to the fact that her disappointingly low ratings were dragging down the afternoon lineup. When Fox News did not commence any negotiations to renew her contract, Ms. Carlson became aware that her career with the network was likely over and conveniently began to pursue a lawsuit.”

Rupert Murdoch’s sons, Lachlan and James, who are 21st Century Fox’s executive chairman and CEO, respectively, said of Ailes’ resignation: “We join our father in recognizing Roger’s remarkable contributions to our company…. We continue our commitment to maintaining a work environment based on trust and respect. We take seriously our responsibility to uphold these traditional, long-standing values of our company.”

Fox News is owned by 21st Century Fox.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Wall Street Gives Back Gains with Down Day

Posted on: July 21st, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

JaysonPhotography/iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — The roller coaster on Wall Street continued Thursday, as the markets followed Wednesday gains by giving most of them back.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average dipped 77.80 to a close of 18517.23.

The Nasdaq ended the session at 5073.90, down 16.03 from its open, while the S&P 500 lost 7.85, closing at 2165.17.

That despite a drop in jobless claims Thursday morning. The Labor Department’s weekly report showed just 253,000 Americans claimed unemployment benefits for the first time. The figure marked the 72nd consecutive week that the figure was below 300,000 — the longest such streak since 1973.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

No Powerball Winner; Jackpot Rises to $390M

Posted on: July 21st, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — The Powerball jackpot is now up to an estimated $390 million after no winning ticket resulted from Wednesday night’s drawing.

The winning numbers were 6, 25, 35, 58, 66. The Powerball was 5.

The next drawing will take place Saturday at 10:59 p.m. ET. Your chances of taking him the big prize are 1 in 292 million.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Five Things You Didn’t Know About Reddit Co-Founder Alexis Ohanian

Posted on: July 21st, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

ABC News(NEW YORK) — Reddit is known by many as “the front page of the Internet.”

It’s a no-frills social platform with a network of 234 million unique users and eight billion monthly page views. Users can post in almost 900,000 “subreddits” or ask anything of prominent figures like President Obama, Snoop Dogg and NASA Mars scientists.

The site was founded in 2005 by Steve Huffman and Alexis Ohanian, who met as college freshmen in a dorm at the University of Virginia — neither with any intentions of creating the ninth largest website in the U.S.

Ohanian, who was dubbed “Mayor of the Internet” by Forbes in 2012 and is the best-selling author of Without Their Permission, sat down with ABC News’ Rebecca Jarvis on “Real Biz With Rebecca Jarvis” to talk all things Reddit, his early inspirations, tortilla makers, tech investing and the best piece of advice he’s ever received.

Here are five things you might not know about Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian:

1. Without Waffle House, there may have never been a Reddit.

Ohanian skipped out on his LSAT after he got a hankering for waffles, and it was inside the Waffle House down Route 29 in Charlottesville, Virginia, where he had an epiphany.

“If I wanted waffles more than this LSAT, I probably shouldn’t be a lawyer,” Ohanian said. “I went back to my apartment and talked to Steve, and said, ‘Let’s make something together — let’s start a company.’”

And that’s how Reddit was born.

2. Ohanian was born on April 24, the same day as the recognition day for the Armenian genocide.

“My entire paternal side being Armenian imbued me with a very strong sense of responsibility,” said Ohanian. “Knowing about all of their sacrifices, I think, gave me a tremendous amount of strength and ability to endure.”

3. His favorite app (after the new Reddit app) is Snapchat.

“It took me a while to get into it, I didn’t understand it,” Ohanian said. “It’s a very different approach to authenticity, but I very much see Snapchat and Reddit as kindred spirits in that way because it’s about being real. Not just for a generation, but I think more broadly, something more and more people want.”

4. He doodled Reddit’s mascot ‘Snoo’ before the company was ever launched.

If you know Reddit, you know Snoo: The little alien is the site’s mascot. Ohanian drew the little guy/gal while he was sitting, bored, in class at UVA.

“I actually had the mascot before we built the website, which is not the right order to do it,” Ohanian said. “I’ve literally met at least six people who have the Reddit alien tattoo on them!”

5. His Reddit username is ‘knOthing’

Ever wonder what the site’s co-founder goes by on his home turf?

“My username is kn0thing. It was from high school. It was King Nothing, a Metallica song. I was really into Metallica.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Queen May Dislike Trump but Artists Have Limited Say in Music Use

Posted on: July 21st, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — As Donald Trump emerged on the stage in Cleveland on Monday night, silhouetted against bright lights with Queen’s “We Are the Champions” playing in background, the crowd went wild. But Queen did not.

In a tweet posted on Tuesday morning, the British rock band said that the playing of the song was an “unauthorised use” and “against our wishes.”

But that’s only partially true: Playing the song appears to have been perfectly legal, as ABC News has learned that the Republican National Convention did have a license that grants it access to play the song in public.

“In order to publicly perform music in a public location, you need a performing rights license,” Marc Jacobson, a music and film lawyer in New York City, told ABC News.

In this case, the rights to play songs by Queen publicly are owned by a company called BMI.

Jodie Thomas, a spokeswoman for BMI, told ABC News that the RNC has a license — called a “conventions license” — that allows it full access to the BMI musical repertoire, which includes Queen.

The Trump campaign itself has a different kind of license — a “political entities license” — which means certain songs from the BMI library are off limits. Thomas said that Queen had objected to the campaign’s use of the song, and that BMI subsequently informed the campaign that it was no longer authorized to play the song.

Thomas also noted that “the RNC is more appropriately covered by the political entities license, which we are in the process of transitioning them to,” and that in the meantime, BMI has sent a letter to the RNC “letting them know that Queen has objected to the use of their music.” She added that BMI hopes that the RNC complies.

However, “as a matter of copyright law — assuming there’s a license for public performance — they have no right to stop it,” Jacobson said.

That being said, the playing of the song is still against the wishes of Queen, and there may be other avenues that Queen, or other artists who disapprove of the use of their work, could pursue.

Lawrence Iser, a Los Angeles lawyer who represented Jackson Browne in a lawsuit against Sen. John McCain over a similar matter, told ABC News that one such avenue would be to make a claim alleging that the artist’s right of publicity had been infringed.

“Queen has the ability to claim under the right of publicity that [the RNC is] using without permission their famous voices to sell a candidate or in this case the Republican Party,” he said.

Similarly, he said that the artists may be protected by trademark law.

“It’s called a false endorsement claim under section 43a of the Trademark Act,” Iser explained. “That gives somebody who has a well-known mark — in this case it would give Queen and the band members of Queen — the right to claim that you’re using our famous identity, our famous sound, our famous song in a manner that suggests we endorse Donald Trump.”

Finally, he said, the artists could claim that the convention is unlike other performances, and thus isn’t covered by a traditional performance license.

“I would argue in this instance — as you can [with] each of the Trumps and everyone else reading from teleprompters — this is a highly scripted show with high production values,” Iser said. “That was like what you’d expect to see in Las Vegas or on Broadway … and use of a song in a scripted show requires a grand rights license”

If all else fails, Iser said, artists can publicly denounce the use of their songs by candidates, and there is likely nothing in the performance agreements preventing them from doing so.

“Generally speaking, campaigns have historically backed away when artists have come out and said, ‘Don’t use my song,’” he said.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Future of Roger Ailes and Fox News at Critical Turning Point

Posted on: July 21st, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Wesley Mann/FOX News via Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Roger Ailes, the embattled chairman of Fox News, may have forever changed the media landscape but his future — and that of Fox News — remains uncertain.

“He didn’t just create Fox News, he changed television news as a result,” said Frank Sesno, former White House correspondent and bureau chief for CNN who is now a professor at George Washington University. “One thing Roger Ailes didn’t do is groom an obvious successor.”

In the wake of allegations of sexual harassment from former Fox News anchor Gretchen Carlson, there are reports that Ailes is negotiating his exit from the company he built. Attorneys for Ailes told ABC News that while proposals have been discussed, there is no exit agreement in place. Ailes has denied all of Carlson’s allegations.

“Gretchen Carlson’s allegations are false. This is a retaliatory suit for the network’s decision not to renew her contract, which was due to the fact that her disappointingly low ratings were dragging down the afternoon lineup,” he said earlier this month.

A departure, if it does indeed happen, would mark the end of a chapter for one of the most storied and influential careers in the history of American media.

A Start in Entertainment and Politics

Ailes began his career in media by working for The Mike Douglas Show, which gave him “a keen eye for production,” said David Folkenflik, NPR’s media correspondent and author of Murdoch’s World: The Last of the Old Media Empires, about 21st Century Fox, the parent company of Fox News.

But Ailes was much more than a television producer. According to Folkenflik, Ailes was able to walk the line between entertainment and politics with ease, and “didn’t see sharp distinctions between” the two worlds.

He advised President Richard Nixon, helping the president connect with voters over the relatively new medium that was television.

“He would stage certain kinds of televised specials where [Nixon] could be seen taking questions from voters,” Folkenflik said. “It made him seem responsive, it made him seem confident.”

Ailes went on to advise Presidents Ronald Reagan in 1984 and George H.W. Bush in 1988, according to Folkenflik.

Fox News Era

In 1996, Ailes was instrumental in the launch of Fox News — a 24-hour cable channel that would come to be a heavy-hitter in the American media landscape.

“Fox set a bar, and Fox had a voice, and Fox had an audience that proved to be disaffected with the media as it existed before,” said Sesno, who is now the director of the School of Media and Public Affairs at George Washington University. “He was focused, and politics is about winning, and he brought that ethos to Fox News.”

But to some observers, Fox News’ success was built on the back of division.

Matt Sienkiewicz, assistant professor of communications and international studies at Boston College, told ABC News that “the key to Ailes’ financial success — the core contribution — was understanding that in the 21st century the news business was going to make money dividing people rather than uniting them.”

As the media environment got more competitive, “he realized that the strategy that was going to be most profitable was going to be limit your approach, pick your lane of people — in his case older, mostly white, conservatives – and lock them in,” Sienkiewicz noted.

Throughout his tenure at Fox News, the channel has enjoyed tremendous appeal with certain audiences. Even as Ailes’ alleged scandal broke, the network continued to draw viewers.

“Fox News Channel was the most-watched basic cable network for the week of July 11, both in the total day and prime-time dayparts,” said a post on the TV Newser website, which covers television ratings. “This represents the 6th consecutive weekly win for FNC, which was up 56.5 percent in total prime time viewers and up 56 percent in total day viewers compared to the same week in 2015.”

Sienkiewicz says the network’s success can be attributed to a style of news coverage that Ailes pioneered.

Ailes knew that “if you want people to watch, you have to entertain them. You can’t just inform them,” said Sienkiewicz said, adding that Ailes’ background as an entertainment producer gave him the skills needed to create a news network. “It is a fantastically successful media business.”


While 21st Century Fox maintains that Ailes is “at work,” his lawyer would not deny that negotiations for Ailes’ possible departure from the network were ongoing.

An email to a Fox News spokeswoman requesting comment on the progress of any negotiations was not immediately returned.

If Ailes does leave, it isn’t clear who could take his place.

“I assume it will be somebody who is within the organization,” said Sienkiewicz. “I would be surprised if they went outside.”

But what is certain is the politics-as-entertainment legacy that Ailes instituted won’t soon be forgotten.

“He started smash-mouth politics, and now smash-mouth is the nominee of the Republican party,” said Sesno.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Jobless Claims Edge Down to 253K

Posted on: July 21st, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — Jobless claims were slightly lower week, decreasing by just 1,000, according to the latest figures released Thursday by the Labor Department.

For the week ending July 16, the number of people filing for benefits fell from an unrevised level of 254,000 the previous week to 253,000, marking the 72nd consecutive week initial jobless claims came in below 300,000. It’s the longest streak since 1973, the Labor Department says.

The Labor Department said there were no “special factors” impacting that week’s figures.

The four-week moving average decreased by 1,250 to 257,750.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tesla’s Elon Musk Reveals ‘Master Plan’

Posted on: July 20th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Photo by Jim Dyson/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced a “master product plan” for his company Wednesday night — based on a document he reportedly completed during a recent “all-nighter.”

Tesla, which earlier this week changed its URL from to the more succinct, and notably more generic,, recently offered to acquire SolarCity, a solar energy company run by Musk’s cousin, Lyndon Rive. In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Musk promised to include details of the proposed merger in the plan.

However, the automaker has faced intense scrutiny over the past few weeks following two collisions involving autopilot, a driver-assist program that uses cameras and radar to automatically change lanes, navigate traffic, and brake to avoid collision.

The autopilot program reminds users to keep their hands on the wheel, prepared to take over at any time –- and Musk has said that the ultimate responsibility for driving lies with the driver. Nevertheless, the company faced an outcry after a 40-year-old Tesla enthusiast was killed in Florida in May when his Model S, driving on autopilot, crashed into a tractor-trailer it had failed to detect in its path.

Some investors grumbled that Tesla should have disclosed the crash more quickly, but Musk fired back, saying in a statement, “There is no evidence to suggest that Autopilot was not operating as designed and as described to users,” and noting the fatality was the first in more than 130 million miles of autopilot driving. (In comparison, the U.S. average is one fatality per 94 million miles driven.)

Less than two months later, however, in early July, a Model X on autopilot swerved off the road and struck a cable rail in Montana. No one was injured, and Tesla says the driver did not have his hand on the wheel despite repeated alerts from the vehicle.

Musk released his plan for the company Wednesday night, including the creation of solar-roof-with-battery products, manufacturing alternative types of vehicles, including SUVs and pickup trucks, and expanding the self-driving capabilities of Tesla vehicles.

Musk notes that the new plan comes as the “first master plan that [he] wrote 10 years ago is now in the final stages of completion.”

He admits that his initial plan was risky, in fact, writing that “starting a car company is idiotic and an electric car company is idiocy squared.”

He defends the merger between Tesla and SolarCity, saying that the creation of energy generation and storage technology can’t be done while the two are separate companies, while also insisting that the company will push forward with self-driving technology despite the two accidents reported this year.

“When used correctly,” Musk says, even partially autonomous driving “is already significantly safer than a person driving by themselves and it would therefore be morally reprehensible to delay release simply for fear of bad press or some mercantile calculation of legal liability.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Airbnb Hires Former Attorney General Eric Holder to Help Mold Anti-Discrimination Policy

Posted on: July 20th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza(NEW YORK) — Former Attorney General Eric Holder will join Airbnb in their effort to help craft an anti-discrimination policy.

The company announced Holder’s hiring in a blog post on Wednesday. Pointing to recent shootings in Minnesota, Louisiana and Texas, which have sparked protests around the country, Airbnb cofounder Brian Chesky offered an update on his June vow to “review every aspect of the Airbnb platform to help ensure we are doing everything we can to fight bias and discrimination.”

Chesky says that in addition to Holder, the company has sought assistance from Laura Murphy, the former head of the American Civil Liberties Union’s Washington, D.C. Legislative Office, and leading civil rights attorney John Relman.

He says the review is only about half-complete, but promised not to “repeat our prior mistakes and delays,” and that Airbnb will “be smart and innovative and…create new tools to prevent discrimination and bias that can be shared across the industry.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

L.L. Bean Recalling Nearly 7,000 Kids Water Bottles Over Lead Concerns

Posted on: July 20th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Jfanchin/iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Kids water bottles sold at L.L. Bean retailers around the country are being recalled after the company learned that the exterior base of the bottles contain high levels of lead.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission says that the recall affects five styles of bottles with printed graphics. The prints include “Dino Bones,” “Flower Power,” “Orange Grid camo,” “Purple Tie Dye Butterfly,” and “Robo Shark.” In total, approximately 6,700 water bottles are being recalled.

Consumers should immediately stop using the bottles and contact L.L. Bean for a full refund.

A sticker at the bottom of all recalled water bottles includes the item identification number 297684, as well as PO#844 and BB2D2-LLB-R45-O413.”

L.L Bean says the lead issue was found in routine testing by the manufacturer and the CPSC notes that there have been no reports of lead posioning due to use of the bottles.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Wall Street Posts Gains, While Facebook Hits All-Time High

Posted on: July 20th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

JaysonPhotography/iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Wednesday was a day of solid gains on Wall Street as two major indices and one major social networking site hit all-time highs.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished the day at 18595.03, up 36.012 from its open.

The Nasdaq closed up 53.56 at 5089.92, while the S&P 500 gained 9.24 to a close of 2173.02.

Those represented all-time highs for the Dow and the S&P 500.

Facebook stock also traded at an all-time high during Wednesday’s session, climbing one percent to $121.82 at one point. Pushing the social network’s stock higher was an announcement that one billion people are using its Messenger app. Messaging is crucial to social media companies who can claim that they are used as a main form of communication.

A big merger in the world of beer. Anheuser-Busch InBev won U.S. antitrust approval from the Federal Trade Commission, allowing the company to take over SABMiller — provided InBev sells its stake in MillerCoors LLC and allow increased distribution for smaller, competing brands.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Uber Teams Up with DigitalGlobe for Improved Mapping

Posted on: July 20th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Uber(NEW YORK) — Hate having to explain where you are to your Uber driver? Well, thanks to the ride-sharing company’s latest partnership, that may soon improve.

Uber has teamed up with DigitalGlobe to use its high resolution satellite imagery.

In a press release Tuesday, DigitalGlobe said Uber will leverage its “industry leading constellation of sensors to access imagery and location intelligence to help identify and improve pick-up and drop-off locations.”

While more details weren’t provided, DigitalGlobe said the partnership was a multi-year and global one.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

HSBC Banker Arrested at JFK in Foreign Exchange Probe

Posted on: July 20th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — The global head of HSBC’s foreign exchange cash trading in London was arrested at New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport on Tuesday night.

Mark Johnson was arrested by agents from the FBI and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation’s Office of the Inspector General (FDIC OIG) around 7:30 p.m.

The arrest was part of a three-year investigation into foreign-exchange rigging at global banks, Bloomberg reported. Johnson was the first person to have been arrested as part of the investigation.

According to Bloomberg, Johnson was charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud. He was scheduled to appear in a federal court in Brooklyn, New York, on Wednesday.

HSBC did not immediately return requests for comment.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Google Unveils New Art and Culture App

Posted on: July 20th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Google(NEW YORK) — Google is making it easier to broaden your cultural horizons — all from the palm of your hand.

The company released its new Art and Culture app on Tuesday. The app will “help you discover works and artifacts, allowing you to immerse yourself in cultural experiences across art, history and wonders of the world — from more than a thousand museums across 70 countries,” Google said in a blog post.

Users can search for art using a key word, time period or even by color, and they can even take virtual or 360-degree tours of historic sites.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Roger Ailes’ Lawyer Not Ruling Out Possible Fox News Departure Negotiations

Posted on: July 19th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Mike FANOUS/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images(NEW YORK) — In an interview with ABC News Tuesday, a lawyer for Roger Ailes did not rule out that negotiations for the Fox News chief’s possible departure are ongoing, but said “there is no deal” and that Ailes “is at work,” overseeing Fox News’ coverage of the Republican National Convention.

Ailes is facing a sexual harassment lawsuit from former Fox News anchor Gretchen Carlson.

Attorney Susan Estrich said there were “lots of conversations” taking place, and that there are “lots of different people doing a lot of talking”..

Earlier Tuesday, a purported severance document was posted to Twitter by journalist Matt Drudge before being swiftly deleted. Estrich said that she believed it was a “draft term sheet” that “got floated around somehow … in the jumble of PDFs.” She added that there are “lots of proposals and ideas going around.”

Estrich said that neither she nor Ailes likely saw the document that Drudge posted.

The lawyer added that she does not know exactly where it came from, and that she told Drudge to remove it from the social network because there was no agreement.

A spokesman for 21st Century Fox issued a statement earlier Tuesday, saying: “Roger is at work. The review is ongoing. And the only agreement that is in place is his existing employment agreement.”

Also on Tuesday, New York magazine published a story citing unnamed sources that claimed that another Fox News host, Megyn Kelly, had “told investigators that Ailes made unwanted sexual advances towards her about [10] years ago.”

In the interview, Estrich, the lawyer, reaffirmed a written statement that she previously supplied, saying Ailes “never sexually harassed Megyn Kelly.” In the statement, she said that Ailes “has spent much of the last decade promoting and helping her to achieve the stardom she earned.”

The story about Kelly comes a few weeks after Carlson, a mainstay of the network for 11 years who left Fox News on June 23, filed a lawsuit against Ailes. In it, she alleges that Ailes had “sabotaged” her career after she “refused his sexual advances,” and that her job was terminated in retaliation for rebuffing him and complaining to him about sexual harassment.

In a video posted to Twitter Tuesday, Carlson said she wants “to support all women who have been victims of sexual harassment” and said that “it’s so important that we will not be silenced.”

Fox News and Ailes have denied Carlson’s allegations.

“Gretchen Carlson’s allegations are false. This is a retaliatory suit for the network’s decision not to renew her contract, which was due to the fact that her disappointingly low ratings were dragging down the afternoon lineup. When Fox News did not commence any negotiations to renew her contract, Ms. Carlson became aware that her career with the network was likely over and conveniently began to pursue a lawsuit.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Melania Trump’s $2,200 RNC Dress Sells Out

Posted on: July 19th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Brian van der Brug/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Style-savvy Melania Trump strikes again.

The Slovenian-born former model inspired so many women to snap up the $2,190 dress she wore during her speech Monday night at the RNC in Cleveland, that the retailer sold out of the stunner within hours of her appearance.

The wife of presumptive GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump, Melania bought the dress — a cotton silk off-white dress from Serbian-born, London-based designer Roksanda Ilinic’s Roksanda label — from online retailer Net-a-porter, according to “Women’s Wear Daily.” Roksanda’s pieces have been worn by Kate Middleton, Emma Stone, and Olivia Wilde.

But Melania did customize the dress, which the designer calls the “Margot,” choosing to add chiffon poufs.

According to Net-a-porter, Melania chose the stunner without the help of a stylist.

Melania’s love of fashion is apparent: From her days as a globe-trotting model, to the stunning Christian Dior by John Galliano wedding gown she wore when she married Donald, to her QVC jewelry and watch collection, style is an important aspect in her life.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Roger Ailes Reportedly Under Increasing Pressure to Leave Fox News Amid Sexual Harassment Claims

Posted on: July 19th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

Mike FANOUS/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Amid speculation that Fox News Chairman Roger Ailes is under increasing pressure to leave the cable network amid sexual harassment claims, Fox News’ parent company 21st Century Fox insisted Tuesday that Ailes remained “at work.”

Two sources told New York magazine Tuesday that Ailes had been given until Aug. 1 to leave his position at the company, following allegations of sexual harassment from former Fox News anchorwoman Gretchen Carlson. The Wall Street Journal, a publication that was part of the same company as 21st Century Fox until mid-2013, likewise reported that he was in negotiations to exit the network.

A spokesman for 21st Century Fox issued a statement saying: “Roger is at work. The review is ongoing. And the only agreement that is in place is his existing employment agreement.”

Carlson, a mainstay of the network for 11 years, left Fox News on June 23 and shortly afterward filed a lawsuit against her former boss. In it, she alleges that Ailes had “sabotaged” her career after she “refused his sexual advances,” and that her job was terminated in retaliation for rebuffing him and complaining to him about sexual harassment.

In a video posted to Twitter Tuesday, Carlson said she wants “to support all women who have been victims of sexual harassment” and said that “it’s so important that we will not be silenced.”

Fox News and Ailes have denied Carlson’s allegations.

“Gretchen Carlson’s allegations are false. This is a retaliatory suit for the network’s decision not to renew her contract, which was due to the fact that her disappointingly low ratings were dragging down the afternoon lineup. When Fox News did not commence any negotiations to renew her contract, Ms. Carlson became aware that her career with the network was likely over and conveniently began to pursue a lawsuit.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Wall Street Closes Mixed as Dow Sets Another Record

Posted on: July 19th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Wall Street closed mixed on Tuesday, but the Dow had its sixth record high close.

The Dow closed up 25.96 (+0.14 percent) to finish at 18,559.01.

The Nasdaq gave up 19.41 (-0.38 percent) to close at 5,036.37, while the S&P 500 closed at 2,163.78, down 3.11 (-0.14 percent) from its open.

Crude oil fell over 1 percent with prices hitting less than $45 a barrel.

Netflix: Netflix’s shares tumbled over 13 percent Tuesday after investors reacted to disappointing subscriber numbers in its quarter two report. The streaming service expected to add 2.5 million subscribers in the second-quarter, but only added 1.7 million. In the U.S., Netflix added 160,000 users, lower than the projected 500,000 subscribers.

Winners: Johnson & Johnson’s stock climbed nearly 2 percent after surprising investors with a sales and profit beat in the second-quarter. Shares for Microsoft Coproration were up over 3 percent in after hours trading after exceeding expectations in its fiscal fourth quarter.

Nintendo: Since the release of Pokemon Go, Nintendo’s stock has skyrocketed and more than doubled in price to $42 billion. On Tuesday, shares soared another 14 percent at the close.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Global Economic Growth Will Be Lower Because of Brexit Vote, IMF Says

Posted on: July 19th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — The global economy faces “a wave of uncertainty” in the wake of the United Kingdom’s referendum to leave the European Union, and for that reason, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has cut its forecast for global growth — saying world economies will grow by 3.4 percent next year.

In April, the IMF projected that growth would be 3.5 percent, but said that the vote, commonly called Brexit, “caught financial markets by surprise,” and creates “a substantial increase in economic, political, and institutional uncertainty,” and thus necessitated lowering the projection.

“Brexit has thrown a spanner in the works,” said Maurice Obstfeld, IMF Chief Economist and Economic Counselor, using the British word for a wrench.

Had the vote gone the other way, the IMF said it would have actually revised April’s forecast upward by 0.1 percent.

The good news is that the United States should be minimally affected, according to the fund.

“The impact of Brexit is projected to be muted for the United States,” the report said.

The U.S. economy is projected to grow by 2.2 percent in 2016 and 2.5 percent in 2017, according to the report.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.