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tv   BBC News  BBC News  February 1, 2017 4:00am-4:30am GMT

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a very warm welcome to bbc news, broadcasting to our viewers in north america and around the globe. my name's mike embley. our top stories: president trump nominates neil gorsuch to fill the vacancy on the us supreme court. judge gorsuch has outstanding legal skills, a brilliant mind, tremendous discipline, and has earned bipartisan support. the mainstream conservative, formerly a federal appeals court judge, will become one of the youngest to serve on the supreme court if his nomination is confirmed by the senate. standing here, in a house of history, acutely aware is of my own imperfections, i pledge that if i am confirmed, i will do all my powers permit to be a faithful servant to the constitutional laws of this great country. president trump has fulfilled a major election campaign promise
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and nominated a conservativejudge to fill the vacancy on the us supreme court. neil gorsuch, from the denver federal appeals court, is 49. he's the youngest supreme court nominee in a quarter of a century, and could now sit for decades to come. he fills the seat left vacant for a year by the death of antonin scalia. president obama's nominee was blocked last year by the republican—controlled congress. sarah corker reports. there was a hint of reality tv drama. president donald trump's nominee for the supreme court revealed during a prime time televised address. today, i am keeping another promise to the american people by nominating judge neil gorsuch. supreme court justices are appointed for life. president trump's choice, a staunch conservative judge who will help shape law for years to come on things like gun control and human rights. —— and religious rights.
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he has a tremendous mind and tremendous discipline. he has earned bipartisan support. what do we know about judge neil gorsuch? he's 49 and lives in denver, colorado. a graduate of columbia university and harvard law school. he served on the 10th us circuit court of appeal since 2006 and used to work with george w bush's justice department. he is most noted for his strong defence of religious freedom. the court's work is vital to the protection of people's liberties and law. the continuity of our constitution, the greatest chart of liberty the world has ever known. the us supreme court is hugely influential, the highest court in the nation.
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decisions made by it include legalising abortion, legalising gay marriage, and ending school segregation in the civil rights era. the ninth seat has sat empty since the death of conservative justice antonin scalia nearly a year ago. chanting: the people united will never be defeated. chanting: the people united bye... chanting: the people united by... it chanting: the people united el- %— time throughout the campaign, donald trump promised
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he would appoint a justice to fill the vacancy arising following the death last year ofjustice antonin scalia. he promised he would appoint someone who, just likejustice scalia, had a very conservative bent. someone pro—life. someone pro—gun rights. he has picked someone to fill the mould. he even talked aboutjudge gorsuch as a perfect candidate and a perfect fit in terms of following antonin scalia's legacy. i travelled the country during the campaign and many voters told me one of the defining reasons why they were going to pick donald trump as their candidate was because of this promise he made to appoint a staunch conservative justice. i am talking about people who were evangelical christians. i remember several conversations with some women in particular in southern states who said
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they were not particularly enamoured by some of the language and style of donald trump in the way that he campaigned and some of the words he used towards women, but they said they were perhaps prepared to put that aside because of his promise to pick a conservative justice. someone who would uphold the christian values that they felt, particularly when it came to things like abortion. and, rajini, the republican party really does now have its hands on all the levers of power in washington. just remind us how important the supreme court important the political make—up of it is. you talk about power. here in washington, it is all about power. yes, president trump in the white house with the executive branch holds a lot of power, as does congress. but the third institution that wields a lot of power is the us supreme court, which, of course, is right behind me. it is very influential in terms of deciding the final say, really, on certain laws.
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a case will start in a lower court but might eventually end up at the us supreme court. just to give people an idea of what kind of decisions the supreme court make, we are talking about legalising abortion, legalising gay marriage, and ending segregation in schools during the civil rights era. rajini, almost everyone seems to say whether they are pro or anti him. he is a proponent of strictly interpreting the constitution. the democrats are saying in the past few minutes there are serious questions about whether he believes the constitution protects everyone orjust the interests of the wealthy. he has a history of representing big corporate giants, doesn't he? there are people who are not happy. that is right. this pick is not a surprise in terms of why donald trump chose him,
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because he has been a corporate lawyer. he has also served on the court of appeals in colorado. he made some decisions that made conservatives very happy, in terms fo upholding religious freedom and the police's right to use force. but it is a divisive appointment. donald trump says he wants to pick someone pro—life. that will make abortion rights and pro—choice activists unhappy. some of the people are gathering outside the us supreme court right now. they are women rights activists and pro—choice groups as well as lgbtq rights organisations. it's not surprise this is divisive. you ask me about the balance of the supreme court. there are ninejustices. before scalia's death, he was a conservative. there were four conservative justices, they're still on the bench, of course,
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and four liberals on the bench. anthony kennedy is seen as a swing vote. now we have a slightly conservative leaning supreme court. if any of the three justices who are in or nearing their 80s retire anytime soon, then president trump could also pick their replacements, and that would make the supreme court lean even more heavily toward the conservative. but the role of the supreme court is trying to make a stand on divisive issues. that is why we are seeing some protesters gathering outside the supreme court. many people will be absolutely delighted with this, it is worth pointing out. we have already heard from people like paul ryan, the speaker of the house, who said this was a phenomenal choice. other republicans are supporting that view. there are others on the other side, like senator charles schumer, who have raised concerns about this appointment, notjust when it comes
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to corporations, but whether or not judge gorsuch will uphold things like women's rights. i'm joined by dr larry sabato from the university of virginia's centre for politics. welcome. president trump said he got the very bestjudge in the country for the supreme court. he is a9, isn't he, he could be making nomination for decades if he is approved. what you expect from him? i expect very conservative rulings, just as you suggested, for a long, long time. what is interesting about the united states supreme court is there is no term. they serve for their lifetime and that means that many of them, most of them, serve for decades. he will be on the scene long after donald trump. it is a very important appointment, probably the most important appointment any president makes and donald trump has pleased all conservative republicans, which means 80— 90% of
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the party, and he is particularly pleased the evangelical christians your correspondent was quoting, they voted for donald trump, even though they didn't like him or respect him much, they expected him to deliver this sort of appointment of the supreme court. we talked about the political make—up of the court, though, there is a history of justice is not always heading in the political direction that the presidents who appointed them expected. yes, there have been some exa m ples of expected. yes, there have been some examples of that in modern history, president eisenhower appointed one who turned much more liberal than he expected and he called it, "the biggest dam full mistake ever made." more recently, president bush senior appointed what was presented to him asa appointed what was presented to him as a conservative justice, appointed what was presented to him as a conservativejustice, david souter, who turned out to be one of the most liberal members of the court. so, now, what presidents do is carefully fed the individuals they plan on nominating. and i don't think donald trump has any doubts or
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worries about the new nominee —— vet. he is competent tivoli conservative. and his mother was a reagan cabinet officer. so he is very unlikely to change on the court. stay with us on bbc news. still to come: a british mission heads to antarctica to hunt for missing meteorites. it hopes to unlock the secrets of the solar system. in other news: the head of france's far—right party, marine le pen, says she will not pay back more than $350,000 to the european parliament, which says she's misused the funds. the money was used to pay an assistant whose work should have been in the parliament. but she spent most of her time working in the national front‘s headquarters. there have been protests in romania after the government pushed through an emergency decree which will decriminalise official misconduct for smaller sums of money.
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ministers also want to pardon to thousands of prisoners convicted of offences in which the financial damage was valued at less than $50,000. the czech foreign ministry says hackers have stolen thousands of e—mails from its servers. the foreign minister said no confidential material had been compromised as that was sent via a separate system. but czech media quoted unconfirmed reports that the e—mails included sensitive information on the country's nato and eu allies. this is bbc news. i'm mike embley. the latest headlines: president donald trump has nominated the mainstream conservative neil gorsuch to fill the vacancy on the us supreme court. let's stay with that story. allen mendenhall is the executive director of the blackstone & burke centre for law & liberty. hejoins us from montgomery, alabama. welcome, thank you very much for
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your time. what do you make of this appointment, if it is confirmed? well, i think it is a very solid appointment for donald trump. i think gorsuch is a reliable conservative and i think he will sail through the nomination process, i really do. i know that is a bold statement to make, but, you know, he was confirmed by a voice vote, unanimously confirmed when he was appointed to the 10th circuit, and the senate judiciary appointed to the 10th circuit, and the senatejudiciary committee is 20 members, all you need is a majority to sail through that, then you get into the full vote, the full senate vote and all you need is a majority to be confirmed. but the democrats can of course filibuster but then the republicans would just need 60 votes in order to invoke it and get their nominee through. and i believe that with 52 senators and with
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just... i think they can peel off eight democrats, i really do, you know, senatorjoe eight democrats, i really do, you know, senator joe manchin eight democrats, i really do, you know, senatorjoe manchin and the bulldog democrats that could turn over. i don't think this nomination will be as controversial as the next one, because right now you are replacing a scalia with a scalia. what happens if you are replacing vince bourke or briar? the course could be big for president trump, i think there are three around the age of 80 —— briar. whether or not the democrats can block this nomination, they say there are serious questions about whether he believes the constitution really protects every american, notjust constitution really protects every american, not just the constitution really protects every american, notjust the wealthy. he has spent his career pretty much representing big corporate clients, hasn't he? well, i think it is wrong to read a lot into the types of clients people have represented. if they are working for a law firm you would expect them to represent those firms' clients. now, if it were
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something like, you know, you work for the acl, the institute for justice, a public interest firm, thenit justice, a public interest firm, then it is fair to read into those clients, you know, certain ideological viewpoints. if you are working for a big law firm you should expect to have big corporate clients. i think it would be a mistake to just look at clients and to infer some sort ofjudicial philosophy for the types of entities you represent. just briefly if you wouldn't mind, would you expect him to be part of any move to overturn rowe v wade, which enshrined legal abortion, it is known trump and pence are in favour? it is interesting, he has never ruled on a case involving rowe v wade or its progeny. he roared against protecting funding for planned parenthood. that is correct. --
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ruled. he found 0bama's unconstitutional change, because it was against sincerely held religious beliefs, so he sided with v lobby, and he studied under the australian legal philosopherjohn dennis, a student of new natural law, writing a book on euthanasia, so there are... you know, there is a record that you could examine for clues as to how he might rule on an abortion issue, but i think that is a question that will be put to him in the confirmation hearings. it is one of those things. there is a funny dance to be played. 0n the one hand a judge cannot really speak directly about issues which might come before him on the court, and on the other hand senators are wanting transparency and disclosure and pr wanting to vet the nominee, so there isa wanting to vet the nominee, so there is a very interesting back and forth
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that takes place during these confirmation hearings. thank you very much. thank you very much. donald trump's election has emboldened europe's far—right parties ahead of elections this year in france and the netherlands. in germany, the alternative fuer deutschland party, the afd, is putting its own candidate directly up against the chancellor angela merkel. 0ur correspondentjenny hill has been to the northern region of mecklenburg—vorpommern to find out who's voting for the afd and why. europe's ) this is a patriotically bring. in communities like this, there are warming to the idea. it can be hard to make a living on germany's north coast and it feels a long way from berlin. they've little trust here in angela merkel. after all, they say, she has little time for them. translation: theyjust
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look after the big cities but these small communities up here are alone, nothing is being done for us, nothing is being done for us, nothing gets through to us, they've forgotten us. good news for germany's right wind party alternative for deutschland. polls say one in every ten voters supports afd. in this region it's even more popular. translation: the other parties avoid the real problems. merkeljust sticks to her views even though she sees what she's got us into, like the terror attacks. if she hadn't brought those people into the country are victims of the berlin christmas market would still be alive. and afd has ambition. this for my radio presenter is standing directly against angela merkel in her own constituency. he's unlikely to take her seat but it isn't impossible. translation: we've got a bit problem with radical islam and we need to
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talk about it. it's been taboo in germany. the afd broke that taboo. thank god people now talk about their fears. just look thank god people now talk about theirfears. just look at thank god people now talk about their fears. just look at who is carrying out terror attacks in europe. they're all islamists. 2017 may yet be the year europe's political landscape shifts beyond recognition. there are elections in france and the netherlands too. the real election battles will be fought in communities like this where people feel forgotten by their national governments, left behind by the political establishment. if europe's leaders really want to stop the rise of the right they must meet this challenge, reconnect with those voters and read gain their trust. a recent display of right wing solidarity in the german city of cobbler and is. afd shares views and 110w cobbler and is. afd shares views and now a platform with the french presidential candidate marine le pen and the far right dutch politician
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geert wilders. there emboldened by brexit and donald trump's victory. but in the shadow of a monument to german unity, afd‘s bid for election glory already divides this country. jenny hill, bbc news, koblenz. campaigners in australia are calling foran campaigners in australia are calling for an end to the use of shark nets after they have been killing turtles. some are being cut deliberately by those who oppose them. in a country where catching a wave is a national obsession, the allure of the ocean is endless. as is the debate over how best to share these waters with some of the locals. shark nets have been the answer since the 1930s. they extend hundreds of metres out at sea. they do not create an enclosure, but they offer reassurance. they are a great idea.
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we have to protect humans. that is what it is all about for me. i am against them. you see creatures in the wildlife getting stuck out there. you take the risk in the ocean. that is where sharks belong. that is what the nets are trying to keep out. great whites are targeted by the programme in new south wales. they nets are put in place from september to april and when the beaches are at their busiest they trapped 130 last year. they also trapped another 600 marine animals, including dolphins, rays, and turtles. this video shows what happens when they get stuck. a group of tourists managed to set this turtle free but 19 others died in the nets last year. they have whale and dolphin alarms they're checked every three days.
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some are set free, but others die. some campaigners have decided to ta ke some campaigners have decided to take things into their own hands. this is where they live and we cannot exclude them from where they live. they are not coming into the car parks and messing them up so we should not go to their habitat and destroy it. this man admits he has cut shark nets in the past. he says they do not protect humans, only harm sea life. the net is a random thing, it's not based on any science or any factual data. it's out there killing anything and everything and the risk to people, that gets back to the risk to people, is negligible. we do advise nobody enters the water. there has not been a fatal shark attack on these beaches in 60 years. the government says this is a sign nets do work, and cutting them is dangerous. people who have deliberately cut them and tampered with them, obviously, it is dangerous, not only for the individuals
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involved, but they are creating a real hazard for people at the beaches. finding the right balance between protecting humans and preserving sea life is a challenge. it seems that it is elusive as ever. hywel griffith, bbc news, sydney. thousands of meteorites fall to earth every year but there's something puzzling about the ones which have been found in antarctica. experiments show they contain very little iron, making them different to ones collected elsewhere. now a team of scientists is setting out to find out why. rebecca morelle went to meet them. antarctica is prime space rock hunting ground, but one kind of meteorite made of iron is surprisingly scarce. now a new hunt is soon to begin. scientists at the university of manchester are developing
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high—tech metal detectors, based on landmine technology, to track down the meteorites. antarctica's missing iron meteorites have been a mystery for years, but now scientists think they've cracked it. the idea is there is a lot there, but they're buried in the ice, and as the ice sheet floats so does the meteorite. but when they hit this mountain range there forced upwards. meteorites made of rock, the most common kind, come all the way to the surface. but the meteorites made of iron, like this, conducts heat from the sun, so it melts the ice below. scientists think these missing meteorites are sitting only 30 centimetres, one foot, below the surface, waiting to be dug up. this beautiful, large iron meteorite... iron meteorites are particularly valuable to science. they provide us with a snapshot of the earliest part when the planets were first forming, so they tell us how they were formed. that's really exciting because it can provide us
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with an indication of what our early solar system looked like. scientists will start testing the technology by the end of the year. the mission to antarctica will be a gamble, but the team hopes it is one that will pay off. the secrets of our solar system could lie just beneath the ice. rebecca morrelle, bbc news. a reminder of our top story: president trump has announced his choice of nominee to fill the va ca ncy left choice of nominee to fill the vacancy left for a year on the supreme court. it turns the balance backin supreme court. it turns the balance back in the conservative favour. neil gorsuch is an appeals court judge in from november. he's a9 so could be on the court for decades. —— from bemba. much more on the bbc news when tied at any time. thanks for watching —— from denver. it is really soggy outside right
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now, especially in eastern areas of the uk. many of us had the worst of the rain hours ago, but through the early hours of wednesday it is just going to stay damp wherever you are across the uk. talking a little bit about the future, we'll see more storms forming across the atlantic, coming out of the us and moving across the atlantic and heading in our direction. lots of cloud, lots happening and i think towards the end of the week that's when we are a little bit concerned that there is some severe weather heading our way. in the short term we have the rain across eastern areas, so this is 6am—8am. notice how some northern and western areas brighten up a little bit later in the afternoon and then it will probably go downhill again, a second time, across the south—west and wales. but in southampton, oxfordshire, around here, birmingham, into manchester, the north—west, a little bit of sunshine. the far east again cloudy again, with rain. little bits and pieces of rain in northern ireland and then
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brighter, a little bit drier and brighter, across scotland. so a real messy picture across the uk on wednesday. be prepared for sunshine, well, be prepared for the rain, but expect a little bit of sunshine. how is the rest of europe doing compared to us? well, it will turn very unsettled from spain, into france and the uk. all these weather systems will be piling into western parts of europe, quieter across the mediterranean and certainly quieter across central parts of europe, the east as well. here is a closer look at the nasty weather system. this will probably bring windy weather to ireland and western parts of the uk. southern coasts have gales in many areas and some outbreaks of rain. so a blustery, wet day. this is the first big low. quite mild, but it won't feel like it in the wind. once the big low starts pulling away, another smaller but more intense weather system is going to develop. this one could do one of two things.
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it could either be quite nasty still and move into france. this will probably be less severe for us. and the other scenario is that this will probably affect south—western areas and track towards the north. this is the more likely one, because of the distinguish between the two tracks. right now this is what it looks like. rain and severe gales in the south—western areas, but stay tuned to weather updates. the latest headlines from bbc news. my name's mike embley. donald trump has delivered on a major election campaign promise and nominated a conservativejudge to fill the vacancy on the us supreme court. neil gorsuch, from the denver federal appeals court, is a9. if confirmed by the senate, he could sit for decades. president trump said judge gorsuch had impeccable qualifications and would strictly uphold the constitution. in a sharply divided country there's been a mixed reaction
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to the nomination, campaigners for women's and lgbtq rights have been protesting outside the court in washington. the new head of homeland security in the us has been defending president trump's executive order temporarily banning travellers from seven muslim—majority countries. generaljohn kelly insisted the extreme—vetting policy was not simply a ban on muslims. it has led to widespread confusion and protests around the world. now on bbc news, hardtalk.
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