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Merrick Garland reveals he plans to probe Capitol riot



Merrick Garland reveals he plans to probe Capitol riot

Judge Merrick Garland, President Biden’s nominee to lead the Department of Justice, said he will launch an investigation into the Jan. 6 Capitol riot involving supporters of former President Donald Trump but did not address whether he will examine​ Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s role in the state’s nursing home deaths.

In his opening statement to the Senate Judiciary Committee, which will hold his confirmation hearing on Monday, Garland also said he will work as attorney general to “serve the Rule of Law and ensure equal justice under the law.”

Garland, who supervised the prosecution of Timothy McVeigh for the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing, will say he plans to pursue those who stormed the Capitol as a joint-session of Congress met to certify the Electoral College vote.

“If confirmed, I will supervise the prosecution of white supremacists and others who stormed the Capitol on January 6 – a heinous attack that sought to disrupt a cornerstone of our democracy: the peaceful transfer of power to a newly elected government​,” Garland will say in his statement.​​

But he did not mention Cuomo in his opening remarks that were released on Saturday by the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Republicans on the panel are expected to grill Garland over whether he’ll investigate Cuomo for allegedly covering up nursing home deaths last spring.​

The Post revealed that his top aide Melissa DeRosa told state lawmakers that the administration hid the number of nursing home deaths during a Department of Justice investigation.

The FBI and the Brooklyn US Attorney’s Office have launched a probe in response to The Post’s report.

G​arland was nominated in 2016 by former President Barack Obama to fill the spot on the Supreme Court left open by the death of Justice Antonin Scalia.

But then-Majority Senate Leader Mitch McConnell refused to hold a hearing for Garland because it was an election year.​

Justice Neil Gorsuch, Trump’s nominee, was eventually confirmed for the court seat.

Garland, who has been a US appeals court judge since 1997, said he will explain to senators why he would leave a lifetime appointment as a judge to become attorney general.

“I have told you that I love being a judge. I have also told you that this is an important time for me to step forward because of my deep respect for the Department of Justice and its critical role in ensuring the Rule of Law,” he will say.

He noted the Justice Department’s efforts through the years to secure civil rights and to uphold the Civil Rights Act of 1957 and expressed a desire to continue in that direction.

“That mission remains urgent because we do not yet have equal justice. Communities of color and other minorities still face discrimination in housing, education, employment, and the criminal justice system; and bear the brunt of the harm caused by pandemic, pollution, and climate change,” Garland will say.

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Ohio grandmother killed by stray bullet before son’s funeral




Ohio grandmother killed by stray bullet before son's funeral

An Ohio grandmother was struck by a stray bullet and killed while planning her son’s funeral over the weekend, a report said.

Ruth Lewis, 89, gathered with relatives at a family member’s home in Warren when she was shot in the back around 7:30 p.m. Sunday, according to WKBN-TV.

She was pronounced dead a short time later. No other injuries were reported.

“This was a senseless death caused by a random bullet,” said Warren Mayor Doug Franklin.

“Obviously, she wasn’t the target so it’s so unfortunate, but that just goes to speak to the dangers of just having so many guns in irresponsible hands.”

Witnesses reported hearing at least five to 10 gunshots, including one who saw two cars driving away erratically from the home.

With Post Wires

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$140 million ‘Pelosi subway’ axed from Senate COVID bill




$140 million 'Pelosi subway' axed from Senate COVID bill

Guess she’ll have to take the bus.

Funding for a rail project near House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s California district that Republicans denounced as wasteful was removed Tuesday from President Biden’s $1.9 trillion COVID-19 stimulus bill.

The Senate parliamentarian ruled the $140 million appropriation wasn’t allowed under the so-called Byrd rule that polices unrelated items in budget reconciliation bills.

Republicans singled out the rail project as an example of unrelated “pork” in the bill, which is being rammed through Congress without Republican support using special rules that allow a simple majority vote in the Senate.

On Tuesday, Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) ridiculed the project as Pelosi’s “tunnel of love” ahead of an anticipated vote on the package later this week.

Representatives for Pelosi, who represents San Francisco, had defended the project, saying that ridership for mass-transit plummeted during the pandemic, making it reasonable to increase government spending.

“The Senate Parliamentarian has now ruled that the BART extension from San Jose to Santa Clara does not meet the requirements of the Byrd rule because it is part of a pilot project. Therefore, it will be removed from the reconciliation package,” Pelosi spokesman Drew Hammill said.

A separate $1.5 million allocation for the Seaway International Bridge between Massena, New York, and Canada also will be removed, he said.

The Senate parliamentarian previously blocked Democrats from including a federal minimum wage hike to $15 per hour in the bill.

Hammill defended the original inclusion of the rail funds.

“COVID-19 had an immediate and overwhelming effect on all of our transportation systems and the millions of transportation and construction jobs associated with them,” he said.

“As part of the $30 billion in public transit support, the House included $1.425 billion to help dozens of major transit rail capital projects, including the BART extension from San Jose to Santa Clara.”

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Masked intruder tried to break into Sandra Lee’s Malibu home




Masked intruder tried to break into Sandra Lee's Malibu home

A masked man was caught on surveillance video trying to break into the Malibu home of Food Network star Sandra Lee, a report said.

The footage shows the would-be thief attempting to get inside the front door of the home twice within a 20-minute period early on Feb. 11, according to People magazine.

Lee, 54, was not home at the time of the attempted break-in but has since beefed up security.

Lee “has hired full-time security and personal protection” since the incident, a source told the magazine, adding that the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department is investigating the case.

The culprit was caught on a doorbell cam trying to open a key lock box twice.

Lee did not recognize the man, People said.

The attempted break-in came one week after Lee revealed that her wardrobe included one-of-a-kind pieces that include a Bob Mackie frock that was once worn by Cher on the “Sonny and Cher Show.”

However, police said nothing appears to have been taken from the house.

Lee moved out of the Westchester County home she shared with Gov. Andrew Cuomo last year. The Food Network star has been silent amid recent sexual harassment claims against Cuomo, whom she dated for 14 years.

Lee said on social media in December that she “decided to get back to me.”

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