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Morning Scoop

Wednesday Scoop: Smollett Controversy

📚Plus, have you read Michelle’s memoir?



Jussie_Smollett_(26362136311) (1)
The charges have been dropped against Smollett, who remains the center of controversy. (image: Dominick D via Wikimedia Commons)

The big story…

“Empire” Actor Jussie Smollett’s Charges Dropped

Jussie Smollett’s charges were dropped Tuesday with the actor saying he has been “truthful and consistent” from the beginning. While the prosecutor’s office says dropping the charges was just, the mayor and police superintendent believe otherwise. CNN reports, “Hours after prosecutors announced the ‘Empire’ actor would face no charges on allegations that he duped police into thinking he had been the victim of a hate-fueled attack, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson held a news conference excoriating Smollett and the Cook County State’s Attorney Office.” Among those who stand by Smollett’s innocence are 20th Century Fox Television, The Roots front man QuestLove and Smollett’s “Empire” costar Taraji P. Henson, to name a few.

In politics…

Betsy DeVos Proposes Major Funding Cuts

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos went before Congress yesterday to persuade legislators to cut funding for the Special Olympics and other student programs in favor of funding for charter schools. DeVos’ proposed budget would cut over 10 percent or $7 billion from the Education Department. The cuts include defunding the Special Olympics by almost $18 million. DeVos suggested that this event be run by philanthropic organizations rather than the government. This was the first time the Ed Sec was called in and questioned by a Democratic Congress. TBD on whether these budget cuts and others will go through.

In music…

Justin Bieber Takes a Break

Justin Bieber is taking a step back from music and touring to focus on his mental health. The singer announced this decision in an Instagram post saying, “I’ve toured my whole teenage life, and early 20s, I realized and as you guys probably saw I was unhappy last tour and I don’t deserve that and you don’t deserve that, you pay money to come and have a lively energetic fun light concert and I was unable emotionally to give you that near the end of the tour.”

Trending today…

The One Where Emma Is All Grown Up


Last but not least…

Track Review: Tedeschi Trucks Band ‘When Will I Begin’

I’m a sucker for slower songs, even if my persona is upbeat and alternative rock is my favorite genre. One of my favorite groups, Tedeschi Trucks Band, released Signs in February 2019, and their third track “When Will I Begin” tugs my emotions in all the right ways. Read more in Adam Shay’s review for CMN.

Today’s Morning Scoop was made possible by Natalia KolenkoAdam Shay, and the CMN Staff. Michelle Obama’s book ‘Becoming’ is set to become the bestselling memoir of all time. NBD. P.S. Was this newsletter forwarded by a friend? Subscribe here to get the Morning Scoop straight to your inbox every day.


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Grace Cooper is a recent graduate of the University of Pittsburgh where she studied Nonfiction Writing and Psychology. When she's not obsessively reading or writing about the news, you can probably find her eating too much pizza and watching When Harry Met Sally for the hundredth time.

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