The death toll in Gaza continued to rise as the week-old cease-fire between Israel and Hamas forces collapsed on Friday. At least 32 people – identified as civilians – died and others injured as the conflict resumed and Israeli forces reopened their ground operations in the Gaza Strip immediately after the truce expired at 7 a.m. local time.
Resumption of combat came as efforts from Qatar and the United States to arrange for a longer cease-fire to allow more refugees to flee and humanitarian aid to enter Gaza failed.
Israel claimed that Hamas forces broke the hiatus by firing rockets at southern Israel while the cease-fire was still in force.
No immunity in criminal cases for Trump
Former president Donald Trump’s efforts to claim immunity on charges related to efforts to overturn the 2020 presidential election were rebuffed by a federal judge on Friday. Judge Tanya S. Chutkan denied the motion by Trump’s lawyers to exempt him from liability from criminal prosecution based on a claimed immunity as president.
“Whatever immunities a sitting president may enjoy, the United States has only one chief executive at a time, and that position does not confer a lifelong ‘get out of jail free’ pass,” wrote Chutkan.
Santos expelled from House
Rep. George Santos (R-New York) made history on Friday, but probably not in a way he would have preferred. The House of Representatives voted 311-113 to expel him following an ethics report showing many falsehoods and misrepresentations regarding his life, education and career.
He’s also been indicted by federal prosecutors on a variety of charges.
Santos is only the sixth member to be expelled from the House. Almost all Democrats voted in favor of removing him from office, along with 105 Republicans.
First woman on Supreme Court dies
Sandra Day O’Connor, the first woman to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court, has died at the age of 93. The cause of death was given as advanced dementia and respiratory illness.
She was appointed to the high court by President Ronald Reagan in 1981 and served until her retirement in 2006. Considered a moderate conservative, in 1989 she cast the key vote that kept the court from overturning Roe vs, Wade, which created a national right to abortion for women. That 1973 ruling was overturned in 2022 on a 6-3 vote.
She voted with the majority in 2000 that resolved the presidential election in favor of George W. Bush over Al Gore.
Weather: Warming, warming, warmer
Isn’t December supposed to be cool or ever cold? Not in our West Orange County area. The forecast for Saturday is a daytime high of 69 with an overnight low of 48 under mostly sunny skies. Sunday’s high will climb to 71 (51) with partly cloudy skies. Monday gets summer-y at 77 (53) and partly cloudy skies, and Tuesday peaks at 81 (53) with lots of sun.