As calls for resignation grows, Al Franken plans announcement
Is Al Franken's political career over? We'll soon find out. The Democratic Senator from Minnesota is set to make an announcement Thursday where he is expected to address his future. Senate leaders and Democrats have united in calling for Franken to resign amid a slew of accusations of sexual harassment and groping. Franken is one of the latest high-profile politicians to be accused of sexual misconduct, a list that includes Republican Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore. Rep. John Conyers, D-Mich., the longest-serving member of the House, announced his resignation Tuesday in the wake of multiple sexual harassment claims against him.
Southern California fires: Evacuations ongoing as wildfires intensify
The wind-driven wildfires hitting Southern California will intensify Thursday after another blaze grew into a force of destruction. On Wednesday, a new wildfire in west Los Angeles, the Skirball fire, set several homes ablaze near Bel-Air and other exclusive neighborhoods. Nearly 200,000 people have been told to evacuate as a result of the five separate blazes. The Thomas fire, which started in Ventura County northwest of downtown Los Angeles, is considered the largest wildfire and has grown to 140 square miles, according to The Associated Press. Experts say that Santa Ana winds, one of the nation's most notorious wind events, have fueled the destructive wildfires and are expected to whip through the region for the remainder of the week.
Wildfires destroy homes in Southern California
Net neutrality protests hit Verizon stores
Net neutrality supporters will hold protests at Verizon stores on Thursday to show their opposition to the Federal Communications Commission's plans to roll back current net neutrality regulations. Net neutrality, or open Internet, is the principle that Internet service providers (ISPs) should give consumers access to all legal content and applications on an equal basis, without favoring some sources or blocking others. The Republican-controlled FCC plans to vote Dec. 14 to overturn the Obama-era rules. Protesters chose Verizon stores because FCC Chairman Ajit Pai formerly was an attorney there. Verizon and other ISPs oppose net neutrality.
Ex-USA Gymnastics team doctor faces sentencing
Former USA Gymnastics and Michigan State doctor Larry Nassar, who has been accused by more than 100 women of using his position of authority to sexually abuse them, is set to be sentenced Thursday on federal child pornography charges. A sentencing guideline calls for Nassar to receive 22-27 years in prison. In a separate case, Nassar, 54, pleaded guilty last month in state court to seven counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct in connection with seven victims. Nassar's accusers include U.S. Olympians McKayla Maroney, Aly Raisman and Gabby Douglas.
Want to make changes to your Medicare coverage? Time's almost up
Medicare's fall open enrollment period ends Thursday. The annual seven-week period, which began Oct. 15, is the time for adding or changing coverage related to Medicare Part C (known as an Advantage Plan) and Part D (prescription drug coverage). This is generally the only time of year you can make changes (If you want to sign up for Medicare for the first time, you have a window that starts three months before the month in which you turn 65 and ends three months after). Here's how you can avoid three common mistakes when picking a Medicare plan during open enrollment.
Prefer to listen? Check out the 5 things podcast below and subscribe for free on Apple Podcasts: