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Good morning and welcome to Fox News First. Here’s what you need to know as you start your Thursday…
Trump takes victory lap after Mueller hearings: ‘The Democrats lost big today’
Just as he did with the findings of his report, former Special Counsel Robert Mueller did not give Democrats what they wanted with his much-anticipated testimonies before two House committees on Wednesday. According to critics such as former Rep. Trey Gowdy, now a Fox News contributor, those who were seeking new ammunition for an impeachment push against President Trump were very disappointed.
Mueller sometimes appeared flustered as he strictly stuck to the boundaries of his previously released report on Russia’s interference in the 2016 election. Even a pro-impeachment Democrat like Rep. Al Green of Texas admitted there were no “wow” moments from Mueller’s nearly eight hours of testimony on Wednesday. Some analysts and hosts on CNN , ABC News and NBC conceded the hearings were disastrous for Democrats. Even liberal gadfly Michael Moore admitted defeat – with President Trump taking notice. (Moore had reluctantly predicted Trump’s victory in 2016.) Click here for Fox News Digital’s five big takeaways from the Mueller hearings.
President Trump took a victory lap after Mueller’s testimony concluded, saying it was a “devastating day for the Democrats.” (Watch his comments in the video above.) The president also predicted Democrats will suffer the consequences of their impeachment quest in next year’s elections. “I think they’re gonna lose the 2020 elections, including congressional seats because of the path they chose.” House Democrats hit back at Trump, saying that Mueller’s “powerful” testimony was about accountability. House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., said his panel will file lawsuits this week to obtain more information about Mueller’s report and to enforce a subpoena against former White House counsel Donald McGahn.
TUNE IN: Don’t miss Sean Hannity’s exclusive interview with President Trump on “Hannity” tonight at 9 ET.
Federal court blocks Trump asylum rules after judge rules to keep them in place
A federal judge in California on Wednesday blocked the Trump administration from imposing restrictions on individuals seeking asylum in the United States, just hours after a judge in Washington had decided to let the rule stand while lawsuits play out in court. The rule, published in the Federal Register last week, required people seeking asylum to apply first in one of the countries they cross on their way to the U.S. — with certain exceptions. It targeted tens of thousands of Central Americans who have crossed Mexico each month trying to enter the U.S. The rule was met quickly with a legal challenge from advocacy groups, who moved for a temporary restraining order blocking the rule.
FILE – In this July 16, 2019 file photo, Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rossello, accompanied by his chief of staff Ricardo Llerandi, right, attends a press conference in La Fortaleza’s Tea Room, in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Llerandi announced his resignation Tuesday, July 23, 2019, saying; “The last few days have been extremely difficult for everyone,” At this historic crossroads, I need to put my family above everything.” Pictured left is Erik Rolon, undersecretary of the interior. (AP Photo/Carlos Giusti, File)
Puerto Rico’s governor agrees to step down after protests
Ricardo Rosselló, the embattled governor of Puerto Rico, announced Wednesday that he will leave office Aug. 2, after more than a week of massive protests calling for his ouster over leaked obscene, misogynistic online chats. Rosselló took to Facebook to announce that his resignation will take effect at 5 p.m. next Friday. Puerto Rico’s Department of Justice confirmed to Fox News on Tuesday that search warrants had been issued in an investigation into the governor and 11 of his aides over whether they committed any crimes related to offensive, obscenity-laden online chats that were released.
This March 28, 2017, file photo, provided by the New York State Sex Offender Registry shows Jeffrey Epstein. A judge denied bail for jailed financier Jeffrey Epstein on sex trafficking charges Thursday, July 18, 2019, saying the danger to the community that would result if the jet-setting defendant was free formed the “heart of this decision.” (New York State Sex Offender Registry via AP)
Epstein found nearly unconscious in jail cell in suspected suicide attempt: Reports
Jeffrey Epstein, the politically connected financier facing multiple charges of sex trafficking, was found unconscious in his New York City jail cell with injuries to his neck in a possible suicide attempt, according to multiple reports. Epstein was found by guards sprawled out on the floor at the Metropolitan Correctional Center and taken to a nearby hospital. It’s unclear how he suffered his neck injuries. Investigators believe Epstein may have done it to himself either on purpose or as a ploy to get transferred out of the jail, sources told the New York Post.
Security camera images of Kam McLeod, 19, and Bryer Schmegelsky, 18, are displayed during a news conference in Surrey, British Columbia, Tuesday, July 23, 2019. The two young men, thought to be missing, are now suspects in the murders of an American woman and her Australian boyfriend as well as the death of another man in northern British Columbia, Canadian police said Tuesday. (Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press via AP)
Manhunt for two suspected killers in Canada grows as third victim is ID’d
Two Canadian men at the center of a nationwide manhunt after the discovery of three bodies earlier this month were charged in the murder of a Vancouver man whose identity was revealed Wednesday. Kam McLeod, 19, and Bryer Schmegelsky, 18, were charged with second-degree murder in the death of Leonard Dyck, who was found dead July 19 in Dease Lake, British Columbia, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police said in a statement. “As a result of the charges, Canada-wide warrants have been issued for Kam McLeod and Bryer Schmegelsky,” police said. McLeod and Schmegelsky, from Port Alberni, British Columbia, also are suspected in the killing of 23-year-old Australian man Lucas Fowler, and his American girlfriend, Chynna Deese, 24, of North Carolina.
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ICYMI: In resurfaced interview, Omar said jihadi terrorists not as dangerous to Americans as white men.
Bernie Madoff asks Trump to reduce his 150-year prison term.
Remembering Rutger Hauer.
MINDING YOUR BUSINESS
Oldest baby boomers remain in workforce at highest rate in decades.
These are the best housing markets for growth and stability, study says.
What happens if the government cancels all student loan debt?
#TheFlashback: CLICK HERE to find out what happened on “This Day in History.”
SOME PARTING WORDS
Mark Levin, host of “Life, Liberty & Levin,” thanks Democrats for Wednesday’s Mueller hearings during an appearance on “Hannity,” saying, “They’ve really revealed themselves as the clowns they truly are. They’ve impeached themselves today and forevermore.”
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Fox News First is compiled by Fox News’ Bryan Robinson. Thank you for joining us! Enjoy your day! We’ll see you in your inbox first thing Friday morning.
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