5 things for September 24: Kavanaugh. Iran. India. The Maldives.

Here's what you need to know today to Get Up to Speed and Out the Door. (You can also get "...

Posted: Sep 24, 2018 12:33 PM
Updated: Sep 24, 2018 12:33 PM

Here's what you need to know today to Get Up to Speed and Out the Door. (You can also get "5 Things You Need to Know Today" delivered to your inbox daily. Sign up here.)

1. Brett Kavanaugh

Christine Blasey Ford

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Brett Kavanaugh

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India

Iran

Maldives

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Political Figures - US

South Asia

Abdulla Yameen

Australia

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Consumer products

Elections and campaigns

Food and drink

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Political Figures - Intl

Politics

Brett Kavanaugh's nomination just got more complicated. After days of uncertainty, lawyers for Christine Blasey Ford confirmed yesterday that she will testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee in an open hearing on Thursday regarding her allegation of sexual misconduct against Kavanaugh. Ford's camp has not been pleased with how the committee has handled the possibility of Ford's appearance -- they say the committee put undue pressure on the timing of her appearance, and "important procedural and logistical issues remain unresolved." Ford also asked that the FBI investigate the matter, which will not happen, and no additional witnesses will currently be called before the committee.

2. Iran terror attack

It's still not clear who is responsible for a terror attack that killed 29 people at a military parade in Iran over the weekend. Iran is blaming Saudi Arabia for allegedly supporting perpetrators of the attack, and the US for allegedly provoking and providing materials to attackers. To make things even more complicated, ISIS shared a video the day after the attack claiming to show three of the four alleged attackers, but none of them said they were actually working for ISIS.

3. India free health care

The Prime Minister of India has launched the world's biggest health care program, with the rollout of free coverage for an estimated half a billion of India's poorest citizens. Narendra Modi said his plan -- which is being dubbed "Modicare" -- will cover an estimated 100 million "poor and vulnerable" families to the tune of 500,000 rupees ($7,800) in hospital costs per year. While some are hopeful the plan improves the quality of life for India's poorest citizens, critics say the announcement was timed to elicit a boost ahead of national elections early next year, and questioned Modi's ability to deliver on his promise.

4. Maldives election

The Maldives is adjusting to a new political reality today after surprising results from a highly anticipated presidential election this weekend. The country's president, Abdulla Yameen, appears to have been beaten out by his opposition, Ibrahim Mohamed Solih. This is critical to the Maldivan people because of Yameen's controversial rule. Yameen came to power in 2013 in a disputed election that opponents say was rigged. Since then, he has been accused of eroding democracy, cracking down on dissent and jailing opposition leaders. Earlier this year, the country was plunged into a political crisis when Yameen defied a Supreme Court ruling to reinstall opposition members of parliament and release political prisoners.

5. Strawberries

The bizarre series of cases involving needles in strawberries has now spread from Australia to New Zealand. A major New Zealand supermarket chain is removing Australian-brand Choice strawberries from shelves across the country after needles were found in a container from Western Australia purchased in Auckland. The Countdown supermarket chain said the move is a "precautionary measure," and the chain is working with Australian authorities.

If you think it all sounds a little ridiculous, the Prime Minister of Australia has some STRONG words for whoever's behind the needling. "It's not a joke. It's not funny. You're putting the livelihoods of hardworking Australians at risk and you're scaring children," Prime Minister Scott Morrison said last week. "You're a coward and you're a grub, and if you do that sort of thing in this country, we will come after you."

TODAY'S NUMBER

224

The latest death toll in last week's ferry disaster in Tanzania. We may never know how many people actually died in the capsizing, since there was no record of the total number of passengers.

BREAKFAST BROWSE

Tiger Woods won a PGA Tour event for the first time since 2013 

"Wow, Tiger Woods is still playing?!" -- Everyone who doesn't follow golf.

Two-headed copperhead found in Virginia 

Which means you gotta run twice as fast and say "nope!' twice as much.

Meghan Markle hid something meaningful in her wedding veil

And it wasn't a granola bar, which seems like a wasted opportunity.

A congressional candidate got six of his opponent's siblings to be in a political ad against their brother 

The word "awkward" was made for moments like these.

Amazon wants its Alexa voice assistant to be everywhere

Just remember to be polite to it. When the robot uprisings come, you'll be the last to go.

TODAY'S QUOTE

"Sometimes, life gives you lemons. Sometimes, it gives you bananas. And sometimes, it gives you something you'd never expect!"

The Texas Department of Criminal Justice, after discovering $18 million in cocaine hidden in a shipment of bananas.

AND FINALLY

Wooo pretty...

Not quite ready for the week yet? Just hypnotize yourself with this painting technique and you'll be all good to go. (Click here to view)

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 22947

Reported Deaths: 977
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hennepin7695581
Ramsey2698110
Stearns199512
Nobles14963
Anoka128963
Dakota120249
Olmsted58210
Washington57630
Kandiyohi4761
Rice4232
Clay41625
Scott3832
Todd2960
Wright2801
Mower2311
Sherburne2222
Carver1892
Benton1733
Steele1490
Blue Earth1261
Martin1265
St. Louis11714
Freeborn1020
Unassigned9410
Pine890
Nicollet827
Winona7815
Carlton730
Cottonwood690
Watonwan640
Otter Tail630
Goodhue603
Polk592
Crow Wing591
Chisago541
Itasca548
Dodge460
Le Sueur441
Meeker440
Chippewa441
Morrison410
Jackson390
Douglas390
Lyon380
Murray360
Becker360
Isanti320
McLeod300
Waseca250
Rock220
Mille Lacs191
Wabasha170
Fillmore171
Pennington170
Swift170
Sibley150
Beltrami140
Brown142
Cass132
Faribault130
Wilkin113
Norman110
Kanabec111
Pipestone100
Marshall90
Wadena80
Pope80
Aitkin70
Koochiching70
Yellow Medicine60
Lincoln50
Mahnomen51
Renville50
Big Stone40
Red Lake40
Redwood40
Clearwater30
Traverse30
Lac qui Parle30
Grant30
Houston20
Roseau20
Hubbard10
Lake10
Kittson10
Stevens10

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 18559

Reported Deaths: 506
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Polk3930118
Woodbury267232
Black Hawk172443
Linn94176
Marshall88215
Dallas87517
Buena Vista7020
Johnson6078
Muscatine54941
Wapello5456
Crawford4892
Tama40026
Scott35210
Louisa34210
Dubuque33418
Jasper25816
Pottawattamie2348
Sioux2130
Washington1858
Wright1450
Allamakee1204
Plymouth1191
Warren1160
Story991
Mahaska918
Poweshiek898
Bremer676
Henry671
Clinton601
Des Moines591
Boone570
Taylor490
Guthrie463
Cedar461
Clarke450
Benton391
Monroe385
Jones360
Iowa350
Shelby340
Clayton323
Osceola320
Buchanan320
Webster321
Marion310
Hamilton290
Madison271
Fayette260
Cerro Gordo251
Monona240
Cherokee240
Lee240
Winneshiek230
Davis200
Grundy190
Lyon190
Jefferson190
Harrison190
Floyd181
Sac170
Dickinson160
Mills160
Hardin160
Hancock160
Humboldt150
Butler150
Delaware150
Appanoose143
Ida140
Keokuk140
Greene130
Clay130
Howard120
Audubon121
Emmet120
Lucas120
Cass110
Jackson110
Page110
Winnebago110
Franklin100
Pocahontas100
Carroll90
Van Buren90
Kossuth90
Chickasaw80
Adair80
Union70
Adams70
Montgomery60
Mitchell50
Ringgold40
Fremont40
Palo Alto30
Worth30
Calhoun20
Wayne10
Decatur10
Unassigned10
Rochester
Clear
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Hi: 72° Lo: 50°
Feels Like: 59°
Mason City
Clear
60° wxIcon
Hi: 75° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 60°
Albert Lea
Clear
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Hi: 75° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 63°
Austin
Clear
63° wxIcon
Hi: 75° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 63°
Charles City
Clear
61° wxIcon
Hi: 73° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 61°
Lingering showers Thursday AM will turn to sunshine by the afternoon
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