President Trump’s aides and advisers have made a habit of showing him only positive polls to cheer him up, Politico reports. Aides and advisers cited in the report said they show him polls “designed to make him feel good,” usually those that focus solely on his base. New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, a Trump adviser, said the president is still “in campaign mode” and closely tracks his polling numbers. “I think he’s never really kind of gotten out of campaign mode and I thought he might,” Christie was cited as saying. Several senior aides and advisers said the Trump administration only becomes concerned when support slips in his base, while another official said public pollsters are often seen as “not understanding him.” Two other White House officials cited in the report said the strategy of focusing exclusively on polling numbers in Trump’s base was “just not accurate” and producing “delusional” ideas about the president's support.
Thousands of Zimbabweans on Saturday marched toward the home of President Robert Mugabe to demand his ouster following a turbulent military takeover earlier this week. The Zimbabwean military, which has placed Mugabe on house arrest elsewhere in the city and declared an ongoing “operation” against officials close to him, urged demonstrators to be “vigilant against agent provocateurs” as the president's grip on power looks set to end. Demonstrators in the capital of Harare marched through the streets holding signs that read, “Enough is enough. Mugabe must go,” while other protesters declared a “new Zimbabwe.” The street protests came after the ruling party's 10 provincial co-coordinating committees decided on Friday to oust the 93-year-old leader amid political and social turbulence in the country. Mugabe must be “recalled as the party president and be allowed to retire and be given his status as an elder statesman,” a statement from the Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front’s provincial committees read. Mugabe has refused to step down amid growing calls for his resignation.
Girls creator Lena Dunham has sparked controversy by defending a writer and producer on her HBO show accused of sexually assaulting an actress when she was 17. Dunham issued a statement to The Hollywood Reporter on Friday dismissing the allegations against Murray Miller, who actress Aurora Perrineau alleges raped her at a hotel in 2012. Calling Perrineau's complaint to police over the alleged assault one of very few “misreported” assault cases, Dunham and Girls showrunner Jenni Konner issued a joint statement describing the accusations as an example of “taking down the wrong targets.” “While our first instinct is to listen to every woman’s story, our insider knowledge of Murray’s situation makes us confident that sadly this accusation is one of the 3 percent of assault cases that are misreported every year,” the statement said. Dunham's remarks quickly triggered an outcry, with Harvey Weinstein accuser Asia Argento among those to ask why Dunham, a self-proclaimed feminist, would be so outspoken in speaking out about rape only to defend an accused rapist when it happens to be her friend.
Turkish authorities on Saturday opened an investigation into two U.S. prosecutors involved in a case against a Turkish-Iranian businessman. Preet Bharara, the former U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, and his successor, Acting U.S. Attorney Joon H. Kim, were named by the Istanbul prosecutor's office as the focus of the probe, according to Turkey's official Anadolu news agency. Turkish prosecutors say the sources of documents and wiretaps used as evidence in the U.S. case against gold trader Reza Zarrab are unknown and constitute a violation of international law. Zarrab was arrested last year and faces charges for allegedly conspiring to help Iran evade sanctions. A former Turkish economy minister and the head of a state-owned bank also stand accused in the case. Turkish authorities have painted the case as politically motivated and accused Bharara of having ties to Pennsylvania-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, who Istanbul claims masterminded a failed coup in 2016.
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Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri on Saturday met with French President Emmanuel Macron in Paris, his first appearance outside Saudi Arabia since his resignation announcement threw Lebanon into crisis. Hariri reportedly arrived at Macron's invitation as the French president seeks to prevent turmoil in the ongoing political crisis. In a Nov. 4 speech from Riyadh, Hariri lashed out at Iran and announced he would resign as prime minister over assassination fears. The bombshell announcement triggered concerns over instability in the region, with some suspecting Hariri was being held in Saudi Arabia against his will. Hariri has denied that Saudi Arabia influenced his decision, however. “With regard to the political situation in Lebanon, I will go to Beirut in the coming days, I will participate in the independence celebrations, and it is there that I will make known my position on these subjects after meeting President (Michel) Aoun,” Hariri said in a statement Saturday. He is expected to return to Beirut by Wednesday.
Malcolm Young, the guitarist who co-founded the legendary rock group AC/DC together with his brother, died Saturday at the age of 64. Young had struggled with dementia for the past several years and retired from the band as a result of his illness. He reportedly passed away peacefully surrounded by family. “Today it is with deep heartfelt sadness that AC/DC has to announce the passing of Malcolm Young,” the band announced in a statement. “Malcolm, along with Angus, was the founder and creator of AC/DC. With enormous dedication and commitment he was the driving force behind the band. As a guitarist, songwriter and visionary he was a perfectionist and a unique man,” the statement said. Angus Young, the group's lead guitarist, said his brother leaves behind an “enormous legacy” after the two founded the band together in 1973.
A California businesswoman has been ordered to pay $5 million to pop star Katy Perry and the archdiocese of Los Angeles in a dispute over the sale of a convent. A jury on Friday found that entrepreneur Dana Hollister intentionally interfered in Perry's purchase of an 8-acre property that had previously served as a convent in the Los Feliz neighborhood. Los Angeles' bishop had approved Perry's $14.5 million bid for the property, but Hollister allegedly swooped in and tried to buy the land from two nuns who'd lived there, according to the Associated Press. A judge later ruled that the nuns had no legal right to sell the property. Hollister has been ordered to pay $3.47 million to the archiocese and $1.57 million to Perry for the massive legal fees and other expenses the jury says she caused.
Tunisian-born designer Azzedine Alaïa, an icon in the fashion world known for his body-con designs, has died in Paris at the age of 77, according to French media. Alaïa, who gained the moniker "King of Cling" for his snug-fitting attire, worked closely with Lady Gaga and Naomi Campbell, and former First Lady Michelle Obama was known to wear his designs. No further details have been released on Alaïa's death, but Twitter tributes came pouring in Saturday to mourn the loss of a fashion legend. A fiercely private designer, Alaïa's designs defied fashion norms and largely defined the 1980s, for which he gained a cult-like status.
Former Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton drew a contrast between the responses to allegations against President Trump and Alabama Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore and those against Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) during an interview with Rita Cosby on WABC radio. Clinton said that Franken, who was accused this week of groping a female broadcaster in 2006, acted responsibly by apologizing and requesting to have the Senate ethics panel investigate his sexual misconduct. "I deeply regret what he did," Clinton said. "There's no excuse for his behavior. But he's called for an investigation. He's apologized to the woman involved." She went on to say that is "the kind of accountability I’m talking about.” “I don't hear that from Roy Moore or Donald Trump,” Clinton added. “Look at the contrast between Al Franken, accepting responsibility, apologizing, and Roy Moore and Donald Trump, who have done neither.”