North Korea, Al Franken, Leonids: Your Friday Evening Briefing


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Carolyn Kaster/Associated Press

3. President Trump lashed out at Senator Al Franken on Twitter after the senator was accused of forcibly kissing and groping a woman in 2006.

Our columnist says the quick bipartisan call for an ethics investigation of Mr. Franken shows that the days of shrugging off sexual misconduct on Capitol Hill may be coming to an end.

Writers from across the political spectrum discussed the accusations. And so did our readers. “It’s not a swamp, it’s a man-made cesspool,” one wrote.

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Andrew Gombert/European Pressphoto Agency

4. The government’s bid to block a merger of AT&T and Time Warner could become the biggest antitrust battle in a decade.

The deal is already tied up in controversy over claims of political meddling. The Justice Department favors divestiture, meaning Time Warner might have to sell one of President Trump’s favorite targets: CNN.

“If the government goes to court, it will lose,” predicted one antitrust expert.

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Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi/Associated Press

5. Zimbabwe’s governing party moved to expel President Robert Mugabe from its ranks, the first legal step to oust him after the military placed him under house arrest earlier this week.

Military leaders insist the takeover is not a coup. Earlier Friday, Mr. Mugabe, 93, was permitted to attend a college graduation in the capital (and appeared to doze off during the ceremony.)

We profiled Mr. Mugabe’s likely successor: Emmerson Mnangagwa, the former vice president, above left with the aging leader.

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Mike Nelson/European Pressphoto Agency

6. There were poignant messages between the awards at the Latin Grammys, held on Thursday night in Las Vegas.

The singer Alejandro Sanz performed “No Es lo Mismo” surrounded by DACA recipients, who embraced him at the end of the song, above. Lin-Manuel Miranda, the playwright and actor, urged the White House and Congress to recognize that “Puerto Ricans are humans, too.”

“Despacito,” of course, was the night’s big winner. The singer Luis Fonsi took home four awards, including record and song of the year.

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Matt Rourke/Associated Press

7. We published an Op-Ed by Jay-Z criticizing the criminal justice system, which he said “entraps and harasses hundreds of thousands of black people every day.”

It was spurred by the case of Meek Mill, above, an artist signed to Jay-Z’s entertainment company, Roc Nation. He was sentenced to prison this month for parole violations that were either dropped or dismissed.

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Steve Dietl/Netflix

8. Our film critic called “Mudbound,” a new drama set in rural Mississippi in the years after World War II, a “a work of historical imagination that lands in the present with disquieting, illuminating force.”

The film tells the story of two families, one black and one white, in the Jim Crow era. The director Dee Rees narrates a scene in this video.

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Pedro Puente Hoyos/European Pressphoto Agency

9. The Leonids, one of the most dazzling meteor showers, peak on Saturday. We have tips on how to see it. Above, the Leonids as seen in northern Spain earlier this week.

Cross your fingers — the last time the Leonids were this strong was in 2002. And if you want to stay on top of celestial happenings, sign up for our space calendar here.

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Erin Simkin/Hulu, via Associated Press

10. Finally, can you love someone who did bad things?

That was the question posed by Sarah Silverman in her new Hulu series, “I Love You, America,” about her longtime friend Louis C. K. In an emotional monologue, she said the wave of “calling-out of sexual assault has been a long time coming.”

“It’s good,” she added. “It’s like cutting out tumors: It’s messy and it’s complicated and it is going to hurt. But it’s necessary and we’ll all be healthier for it.”

Have a great weekend.

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Your Evening Briefing is posted at 6 p.m. Eastern.

And don’t miss Your Morning Briefing, posted weekdays at 6 a.m. Eastern, and Your Weekend Briefing, posted at 6 a.m. Sundays.

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